Rakuten LinkShare Press Releases

Rakuten LinkShare Network Data Reveals Sweetest Valentine’s Day Opportunities for Online Advertisers and Publishers

Affiliate Marketing Key Driver of Online Sales for Valentine’s Day Gift Categories

New York -- February 7, 2013 -- Rakuten LinkShare today unveiled online shopping data from its performance marketing network that provides deeper insight into consumer Valentine’s Day purchasing behaviors. By identifying the biggest online shopping days and top selling products during the Valentine shopping season, online advertisers and publishers can develop more targeted and strategic campaigns.

For retailers looking to maximize their reach and align their marketing strategies with online consumer behavior, affiliate marketing is a strategically important channel. In a recent study by Forrester Consulting, in conjunction with Rakuten LinkShare, it was found that consumers visit on average 2.7 sites before making an online purchase.¹

“For Valentine’s Day gift ideas, consumers are looking across the Web for selection and value,” said Nilton Duque, director of marketing, Ice.com. “Affiliate Marketing continues to be a strong channel for driving traffic, finding new customers and driving sales because it helps consumers find exactly what they’re looking for while helping us to promote our entire product inventory.” 

According to the data, the top three sales categories for the years 2010-2012 were luxury items, jewelry and flowers. Further, the highest overall sales spike across these top three categories occurs from February 6-10 with February 8 being the day with the highest peak, on average, in online sales. However, each category has its own sales peaks.

Specifically, online luxury sales peak on February 9, jewelry sales increase consistently from January 30 through February 10 with the peak occurring the first weekend in February, and online orders for flowers spikes from February 5-13 with the peak occurring on the 13th.  Based on the information gathered over the past three years, online advertisers can anticipate similar behaviors this Valentine’s Day.

“While performance marketers have always built online campaigns around these traditional Valentine’s Day purchases, data from the Rakuten LinkShare network provides additional insight that will influence campaigns and the types of real-time offers that will prompt consumers to respond,” said Alex Czurylo, senior director of analytics and reporting, Rakuten LinkShare. “When you have a tremendous opportunity and such a short window of time, it’s critical to know exactly when to amplify your efforts so that you are reaching the right customers with the right offers at the right time and our network data helps retailers identify these trends year-over-year.”

According to the National Retail Federation, consumers spent an estimated $17.6 billion last year on Valentine’s Day and twenty percent of purchases were made online.²   As consumers become more comfortable buying luxury items online and technology enables last minute purchases, Valentine’s Day presents more opportunities for advertisers and publishers to see increased sales and commissions.

¹ Source: “Affiliate Marketing – The Direct and Indirect Value that Affiliates Deliver to Advertisers.”

² Source: National Retail Federation.

About Rakuten LinkShare Corporation
Rakuten LinkShare Corporation provides e-commerce businesses with a vast, high quality pay per action marketing network, along with expert consultative services and patented technology. Rakuten LinkShare's cost-efficient pay per action (PPA) affiliate marketing network, search marketing programs and lead generation campaigns acquire new customers, increase revenue and drive results. Rakuten LinkShare clients are Fortune 500 and prominent companies doing business online, including J.C. Penney, 1-800-Flowers.com, American Express and Avon Products. Rakuten LinkShare was founded in 1996 and is headquartered in New York City, with offices in San Francisco, Chicago, Tampa, London and Tokyo.  For more information, please visit: www.linkshare.com.

About Rakuten
Rakuten, Inc. (JASDAQ:4755), is one of the world's leading Internet service companies, providing a variety of consumer- and business-focused services including e-commerce, e-reading, travel, banking, securities, credit card, e-money, portal and media, online marketing and professional sports. Rakuten is expanding globally and currently has operations throughout Asia, Western Europe, and the Americas. Founded in 1997, Rakuten is headquartered in Tokyo, with over 10,000 employees and partner staff worldwide.  For more information, visit http://global.rakuten.com/group.

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Scott Allan

Kathy Keating
Blanc & Otus

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