Wow, what a holiday selling season. The dust is settling and ComScore is calling it a 26% y/y increase for the holiday shopping season. We definitely saw that and more at ChannelAdvisor.
As we look back at the data, one of the big shining spots AND surprises for us was the performance of Comparison Shopping Engines. CSEs have always been an important element for a retailer in our mind, so we typically advise customers to a) make sure you are there and b) look for them to be 5-10% of your online channel sales. Well this holiday season we’re seeing CSEs achieve that range and more. In fact, we have some mid-tier (IR200-500ish) customers where CSEs (carefully managed for strong ROI) are in the 30-40% range with better economics in many cases than any other channel.
This graph really tells the story – it shows our y/y growth in Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) driven by CSEs for our customers.
Throughout the holiday season we saw CSE contribute 2-3X compared to last year. Why was this? Stay tuned for a series of posts I’ll be doing in January, I call “Why CSE?” Many retailers we talk to don’t see value with the CSE channel, so I want to tackle that issue head on in early 07 using the substantial growth we saw from CSE as a kick-off.
Finally, in related ecommerce news, I thought you may be interested in a post at sister site, eBay Strategies, about a new Google Checkout $10 off promo. Also, eBay raised their fees (again) and is holding a big shin-dig in two weeks for top sellers. I’m sure some Shopping.com news will come out of that so stay tuned for that plus more details on “Why CSE?”