With football mania in full swing, Patrick Wyatt, VP, Product at Criteo has uncovered some statistics that highlight the changes in online buying behaviour during world cup matches. During the recent England v Uruguay match, online sales soared in the three hours leading up to the match but then dropped by 15% once the game had kicked off. This kind of insight is crucial for marketers to understand in order to know when it is most effective for them to engage with their customers during major national events.
Like many I have been struck by the football mania that has spread as the World Cup progresses. Even in the face of the poor England performances which, although deep down we have come to expect, for some reason they never get any easier to accept.
Beyond my interest for sport’s sake, as a marketer, I am intrigued by the case study that the World Cup offers brands and retailers on how to reach people when big events are occurring, such as the World Cup, the Grand National, a General Election, the X-Factor final or even a Royal Wedding.
In this world cup, the crucial England Uruguay do or die match on June 19 for both teams, saw a peak and trough pattern of sales, with a surge before the game, a subdued period during and a climb in sales back to normal levels following the game.
According to our data we saw the following behaviour pattern unfold:
• Pre-game: From 4pm until kick-off at 7pm there was a surge in sales, registering significantly more than at the same time on the same day the previous week
• First half: Once the game kicked off, the number of sales on advertisers’ sites fell by 15% for the duration of the match
• Half time: At 7.45pm there was then a strong jump in sales during half time up to 8.00pm as people were able to concentrate on shopping and making payments without the distraction of the football
• Second half: The second half registered another significant drop in sales. What was fascinating here is that the last 15 minutes of the game saw the biggest drop in sales of the whole match (13%), as people concentrated on the game hoping for an England comeback miracle! Interestingly, no such drop off was seen in the final 15 minutes of the Costa Rica game as the result had no impact
• Post-game: Sales numbers returned to normal after the Uruguay game around 9pm before people started to log off for the evening
The charts below map the activity in more detail:
Those are incredible swings and point to the importance of engaging with customers at the right time, when they are in the market for your product or service. This tells me that brands and retailers must work with their advertising companies to thoughtfully consider the buying patterns of their consumers and would-be consumers.
Central to this insight is being able to collate, access, analyse and interpret the right data cost effectively in real time. Without this, as a marketer, you are lost.
By Patrick Wyatt