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For advertisers and publishers, December is the last chance to boost Q4 and the entire year’s sales numbers. Consumers rush to snag last-minute holiday gifts as they prepare to celebrate the holidays and the end of the year.

Now that the trees have come down and the twinkly lights are packed away, it’s time to get back to business. As we do each month, we looked at Skimlinks’ US publisher affiliate data from December to see which editorial articles and products earned the most traffic and generated the most revenue. We analyze that data to bring you powerful insights related to otherwise undiscoverable consumer trends.

Publishers should use the trends to help inform their content strategy, while advertisers can use them to plan native ad campaigns.

The biggest trends we saw in December (which should all be applicable for the next few months) are:

  • A spike in searches for streaming shows
  • Gift guides for her
  • Athleisure wear sales race to the top

Stream On: Yellowstone Steals the Show

It seems like each week a new TV show earns the Most Searched For spot; that was Yellowstone in December, according to readership trends on the open web.

The show’s mid-season finale ended with a cliffhanger, so while fans will have to wait until this summer to see how the Jamie and Beth showdown goes, plenty of consumers are ready to catch up on season 5 now that they have some downtime. If their holidays were anything like ours, dinner conversations were filled with praise for Yellowstone, so a new audience is ready to binge-watch before the new episodes air.

The Takeaway: Finding out how to stream the most talked about shows is a top search trend for consumers and remains consistent month after month. Heading into 2023, we expect to see more searches for anticipated shows and movies, so consider that a can’t-fail blueprint for clickable content. With the Super Bowl, You, Abbot Elementary, Party Down, and more being released in Q1, there’s something for everyone’s viewing pleasure.

Publishers, mark your editorial calendar so you can push out stories just ahead of the airing of the second half of the season. But for now, leverage the popularity of Yellowstone with articles such as “10 Must-Watch TV Shows for Yellowstone Fans.”

Capitalize on the overarching trend by helping readers navigate the streaming seas. Boost your commission by telling them what they need to know: which platforms they can stream shows on and the subscription options.

Advertisers, consumers are hungry for new shows (it’s one of the best parts of January, right?), and the cold weather has them heading to the couch. The key for your campaigns is getting them in front of the right audience, which can be achieved through precise targeting.

Of course, you should go for obvious audiences and test segments outside that scope. The viewership for Wednesday, the Addams Family reboot, was 40% male, and almost half of those who tuned in were between 1-49, so targeting only teen girls would have sold the show short.


Give Her What She Wants: Gifts for Her

It may be better to give than receive, but the truth is, when it comes to giving, everyone wants to give good gifts. And most people need a little advice to find the right present. We know that’s true because, time and again, we see gift buying guides generate substantial commissions. The winter holidays followed that trend, with Gifts for Her guides leading the pack.

The Takeaway: Luckily, we’re never too far away from a holiday. Christmas may be over, but Valentine’s Day is only a few weeks away. The products people didn’t find under their trees will still top wish lists. Help consumers wrap a big red or pink bow around those. And, remember that V Day presents are for more than romantic partners.

Publishers, gift guides are a surefire way to secure revenue. They are irresistible! Check your data to see which items your readers purchased the most. Then, pepper those into guides alongside more specific and traditional Valentine’s Day buys. Help shoppers find the perfect present for everyone, including parents, siblings, grandparents and friends.

As an advertiser, pay particular attention to your messaging and consider calling out who the gift giver and receiver are in campaigns. Test out titles like “Galentine’s Gifts for Your Besties” or “Dads, Win Your Daughter’s Heart with This.” And don’t be afraid to revamp your best-performing Christmas campaigns with a Valentine’s Day spin.

Bonus Takeaway: Want to learn how to repurpose your social ads for native? Watch this webinar.


Work It Out: Athleisure Sales

What’s not to love about athleisure wear? It’s cool, comfy, and in most cases, can pull double duty in the gym and on the couch. Year after year, consumers stuff themselves during the holidays because, in the back of their minds, their resolution is to be healthy and hit the gym. You know what else is predictable? Those resolutions fall by the wayside in January just to reemerge in February when we’re ready to be serious or at least look like it with the right clothes.

The Takeaway: The pandemic overhauled people’s thinking, and casual comfort has gone from pandemic fad to here to stay. Consumers are into trendy brands like lululemon and Vuori and practical, high-performing ones like Patagonia.

Publishers can maximize sales by tapping into those nagging New Year’s resolutions with content that features athleisure wear. Add an extra dimension for readers (and extra cash for you) by including at-home workout equipment and one-stop shop brands like Dick’s Sporting Goods.

Advertisers, you, too, can leverage people’s desire to feel good and look good. Tweak your campaigns to show how much fun people have in your clothes, whether hiking through the forest with a four-legged friend or casually strolling through the mall with their beau.


Well, that’s a wrap on 2022’s monthly consumer trends but stay tuned as we have plenty of valuable insights headed your way in 2023.

Originally Published:

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