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Christmas Affiliate Marketing Campaigns

StephenR

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The 2004 holiday season was pheonominal. As reported by VeriSign, Inc. ecommerce sales totaled a whopping $8.8 billion during the Thanksgiving-Christmas holiday season. This number climbed more than 24% from the 2003 holiday push. The average price per purchase reached a high of $178 three days before Christmas. You have to love those last minute shoppers! The final five shopping days during the 2004 holiday rush saw online sales total $1.5 billion. These numbers clearly indicate consumers were much more confident shopping Online than in previous years.....so what are YOU doing to be a productive affiliate THIS year?

Although the Verisign report is no longer available here is some useful statistical data gleaned from the report to give you an idea of what may also be great markets this year:
- Online transactions for the electronics category increased 17 percent for the entire holiday shopping season as compared to 2003. This category picked up steam from a four percent increase as of December 12, 2004 and a 12 percent increases as of December 19, 2004. The category also carried an average ticket price of $291, the highest average price across all categories.

- Online transactions for the apparel category increased 45 percent for the entire holiday shopping season as compared to 2003. Women's apparel represented the largest portion of this category, accounting for 40 percent of the total sales this season. Women's apparel also showed the highest increase in average ticket price, increasing 28 percent to $140 this year as compared to the 2003 online holiday shopping season.

- Online transactions for the entertainment category (music and video downloads) increased 54 percent for the entire holiday shopping season as compared to 2003.

- Online transactions related to the photo-printing-and-sharing category increased 120 percent for the entire holiday shopping season as compared to 2003. This was the fastest growing of all categories tracked during the 2004 holiday season.

- Online transactions for the general retail category increased 24 percent for the entire holiday shopping season as compared to 2003. The Kitchen-and-Housewares subcategory held the highest share of this category at 28 percent. Kitchen-and-Housewares also held one of the season's highest average ticket prices at $148 - second only to the electronics category.

Spending Patterns

- Consistent with previously observed consumer online shopping behavior, Monday again was the busiest shopping day of the week. Monday, December 20, 2004, the peak online shopping day from the week, accounted for 4.8 million transactions, representing more than 23 percent of the week's activity.

- In the "brick-and-mortar" world, retailers expect that December 26, the day after Christmas, will draw a large number of consumers to their stores. This year, December 26 fell on a Sunday, a day of the week with historically low online shopping activity. Therefore, the equivalent spike in online shopping activity occurred on Monday, December 27, 2004, the first weekday following Christmas. The total volume of transactions recorded on December 27, 2004 was 3.8 million, a 61 percent increase as compared to Friday, December 26, 2003 (the first weekday following Christmas in 2003). This also represented an eight percent increase as compared to Monday, December 29, 2003 (the first Monday following Christmas 2003).

- The total amount spent from Thanksgiving 2004 through Monday, December 27, 2004 was $8.8 billion, a $1.7 billion - or 24 percent - increase in sales as compared to the same period in 2003 (Thursday, November 27, 2003 to Monday, December 29, 2003).

- The average sale amount during the time-period from Thanksgiving 2004 through Monday, December 27, 2004 was $145, a 12 percent increase as compared to the same time period in 2003 (Thursday, November 27, 2003 to Monday, December 29, 2003). The average ticket price reached a high of $178 on Wednesday, December 22, 2004.
If you're planning on setting up some new affiliate sites for the upcoming holiday season I highly recommend you start your Christmas Affiliate Marketing Campaigns now. By starting now you'll ensure your new sites will have plenty of time to work their way up in the major search engines.

I have done some research and uncovered some great affiliate programs you may want to promote now and during the upcoming holiday season. Here ya go:

CandlePeople.com (sold via DiscountCandleShop.com) - With the CandlePeople.com affiliate program you will earn 10% on all sales you generate. You will also earn 2% on all sub affiliate sales. Their current top affiliate produces $5,500 in monthly sales. They also provide a great datafeed as well.

DesignCrafters.com - Design Crafters offers Business Christmas Cards and holiday greeting cards tailored to your specific needs. I find this to be a very interesting business and affiliate program which may prove very lucrative. Design Crafters will pay you 10% of the total cost of all orders before tax and shipping charges are added in. Cookies are stored for 6 months and you'll be paid on the first of the month.

Maine Made Christmas - If properly marketed this could also prove to be a very good Christmas affiliate program to promote....after all who doesn't hang a wreath at Christmas!? Maine Made Christmas Maine Made Christmas will pay 10% of the product cost excluding shipping. Generally speaking this means you'll earn $3.00 per sale. This is not a significant amount but when you consider their average wreath price is $30.00 you may do well in volume sales.

Bare Necessities - Bare Necessities has the most complete selection of men?s and women?s brand name intimate apparel on the Internet. You will earn 8%-10% sales. There web site is very tasteful, easy to navigate and the affiliate program is conducted through LinkShare.com

The Sharper Image - Sharper Image will pay you 10%-14% commission on every hi tech gadget sale you make. Sharper Image is very popular and chances are you have reviewed one of their magazines on a flight somewhere and saw something you liked..I know I have :) You will receive a check monthly for all commissions generated. The average order from a Sharper Image affiliate site is over $125. They have recently implemented a low $25 monthly payment minimum and also offer separate affiliate programs for our European and UK online stores. Their affiliate program is also conducted via LinkShare.

Good luck to your Christmas Affiliate Marketing Campaigns and DON'T procrastinate. A good plan today is better than the perfect plan tomorrow - General George Patton.
 
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