November 29, 2017 | Mobile Web Monetization | by Christopher Hendrickson

Black Friday: Record High ARPU

Ad revenues rise and fall throughout the year for publishers. The highs and lows in their earnings are caused by countless events: seasonality, algorithm changes, and hundreds of other factors outside of their control.

Take Black Friday and the holiday season, for instance.

The days preceeding Black Friday—the busiest day of the year for retailers in the United States—are when advertising spend peaks in order to drive sales, which is great news for publishers. This spending is going increasingly toward online inventory, too, as more and more shoppers swap the famously crowded streets and stores for the comfort of their homes and mobile devices (digital advertisers spent 17.9% more on Black Friday in 2016 than in 2015).

Black Friday is becoming a more international phenomenon with shoppers around the world taking advantage of the deals on offer. This year in the United States alone, online shoppers spent 18% more on Black Friday in 2017 when compared to 2016 (CNBC news). This fact means that we have reached a tipping point, with more consumers now shopping online than in a physical store.

It comes as no surprise, then, that on average, Marfeel publishers saw huge leaps in terms of earnings this year. In fact, when compared to Black Friday in 2016, some publishers experienced an unprecedented 95% increase in Average Revenue Per User (ARPU). In the weeks leading up to Black Friday, there was also an observable upward trend in terms of ARPU. From Thanksgiving Day to Black Friday this year, for instance, publishers observed a huge 58% average increase in terms of ARPU.

When it comes to measuring the monetization performance of their websites, ARPU a critical metric for publishers. ARPU accounts for variances in traffic, meaning that anomalies are eliminated and publishers receive the most accurate possible insight into how their publication is really performing. This ensures that publishers are maximizing the revenue generated per visit to optimize the earning potential for each visit – a key strategy for elevated ad spend and traffic during the holiday season. Read more on Atenea.

The leaps made by Marfeel publishers are not solely due to enhanced spending around this time of the year: frequent updates and tweaks to the Marfeel solution are always working to earn long-term growth throughout the year. Newly implemented technologies such as server-side device detection, for instance, are speeding up the mobile experience for readers, engaging them, and improving ad revenues. These refinements—and others—help publishers to take advantage of the additional spending at this time of year.

(You can read our post from last week on why we predicted mobile would play a critical role in e-commerce this holiday season.)

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