As 2020 came to an end, online shopping and consumer behaviour saw significant, lasting changes. The considerable growth in digital commerce accelerated new generations to shop online, with more than 62% of Gen X and 44% of Boomers shopping online than before the pandemic. More consumers also shifted loyalty with 36% of consumers trying a new brand during the pandemic, and 73% plan to continue to shop with those brands moving forward.
As the holiday season started to wind down in December, reports showed eCommerce sales going up 49% year-over-year (YoY), accounting for 19.7% of all retail sales compared to a year ago at 13.4%. Furniture and home décor jumped 31% in online sales while groceries and electronics rose approximately 6% YoY.
December sales saw a slight decline before Christmas, but then saw an uptick the week of Christmas from in-store shopping. Online holiday sales were impacted by shipping delays globally and consumers were forced to shop in-store or leverage BOPIS (Buy online, pick up in-store), which was up 208% in April and continued to grow through the rest of 2020.
Acceleration Partners’ clients experienced similar results as we saw declines month-over-month (MoM) from November, as well as after mid-December. Clicks were down 37% MoM and orders were down 41% MoM, but revenue was only down slightly at 6% YoY, adding to only the second month (July) in the full year where we saw an overall revenue decline YoY. Overall, clients saw a 19% increase in revenue and 49% increase in actions (orders and leads) YoY.
Revenue, orders and clicks down, AOV Slightly Down
Looking at our client data between November 2020 to December 2020, we saw decreases MoM across all merchant verticals, as expected, with triple digit growth from October to November.
While orders were down 41% MoM, Average Order Value (AOV) was only down 5% MoM, reiterating that consumers were still focused on buying gifts but did slow down as the free shipping benefits expired.
While all affiliate partner/publisher types were down MoM, the smallest decline came from content (down 29% MoM) as some consumers finished their shopping journey.
Acceleration Partners client performance data: December 2020
Overall, the December “wins” for Acceleration Partners’ clients globally included strong promotions at the beginning of December.
While our merchant verticals saw declines MoM, we did see increases YoY from the household and technology verticals as consumers shifted spending to buying home décor gifts and/or spending their holiday gifting funds on ways to improve their homes.
Acceleration Partners’ clients: December over November 2020 data analysis
Affiliate Partners: December over November 2020 data analysis
Acceleration Partners: client revenue Year-over-Year (2019 to 2020)
Revenue was up 19% YoY and Actions (orders and leads) were up 49% YoY, which is consistent with the significant accelerated growth ecommerce saw globally in 2020.
Up next … quarterly client data
We will start sharing our client data quarterly in 2021. Look for the next report to be shared in April.
Questions about this data or the strategies other brands are finding successful? Contact our team!
Kelly Ground is the Associate Director of Strategic Accounts at Acceleration Partners