Most marketers attribute the traditional holiday season with about 35% of annual revenue. Then there are other retailers like Wine.com, recently highlighted in an Internet Retailer article, which count on the holidays to generate up to 80% of revenue.  The importance of this season means that many businesses spend a good part of the calendar year getting ready for what they hope will be a busy time. And 2010 will be different for marketers with an online presence because of several new trends.

Writing for Internet Retailer, Paul Demery describes the new transparency that will be available to consumers.  With more mobile phone apps at their disposal, tech-savvy consumers can stand in a store and compare the price they’re looking at with what the competition is offering. And if they’re uncertain about a product, they can instantly access peer reviews. Retailers who want to increase market share may roll out their m-commerce programs well in advance of the holiday season in order to work out problems before the orders really begin rolling in.

In addition, market giant Google is promoting new ways for marketers to engage shoppers. For example, marketers can opt to have a banner ad follow shoppers as they move from site to site while looking for products or other information.  Google is also promoting a service that allows marketers to dynamically change ad copy. By directly providing data to Google, marketers will be able to quickly change details such as promotional pricing or free shipping offers.

Marketers will also want to consider how much of their search budget to place with Google versus the increasingly powerful Bing which will be the underlying search engine for Yahoo later this year. Demery cites industry analysts who are advising their clients to study actual “search marketing-driven conversion rates and average order values”  from the early part of December last year. Marketers can use that information now to plan their bid rates for key words for this holiday season.

So while it looks like summer outside, marketers already have visions of sugar plums dancing and orders jumping in December.

[Source: Demery, Paul. “Looking ahead to the holidays.” Internet Retailer. May 2010. Web. 20 May 2010]