Halloween looks like it will overflow with treats for retailers ready to take advantage of the holiday. This year, masks will certainly take on a whole new meaning but let’s see what else is in store for the haunting month ahead.

Below you’ll find snack-sized details about what the market holds for e-Commerce brands, which news trends you can leverage to connect with audiences, plus creative and targeting best practices.

Consumers Are Ready to Eat, Drink and Be Scary

It’s only September, but US retailers are already looking forward to boo-ming sales.

Last year with the pandemic in full swing, the National Retail Federation reported that 58% of people still planned to celebrate, with total spending reaching $8.05 billion, a slight decrease from 2019’s $8.8 billion. Now, with more people vaccinated and fewer limits on gatherings, Halloween is primed for a rebound this year.

Research from the National Confectioners Association found that 82% of people plan to celebrate Halloween 2021. A survey from The Hershey Company revealed 22% of consumers are planning to make up for the lack of last year’s festivities in a big way, and 54% plan to buy more candy for parties and trick or treaters. Etsy‘s data shows tremendous year-over-year increases in Halloween-related searches for outdoor décor (59%), earrings (73%), and DIY (1368%).

News Trends: Creepin’ It Real

Just like kids sort through their Halloween candy haul, we sifted through all US publisher network data (pulled on September 7, 2021) to find the trends that will matter this year. Use these takeaways to bring relevance to your ad campaigns.


Pageviews for ‘Halloween’ topped out at 1,383,520 in the last 90 days, up 134% compared to the previous 45 days.


Eerie-sistible Costumes

With people planning to pull out all the stops this year with their outfits, pageviews for the word ‘costume’ increased 83%.


Goblin Up Candy

Searches for the phrase ‘candy bar’ are practically otherworldly, with a 2104% increase in the last 45 days and a mind-bending 2429% increase from last year.


Oh my gourd-ness

While readership for ‘pumpkin’ is down 29% over the last 45 days, this year’s 1,107,240 pageviews still show a chilling 99% boost when compared to the previous year.


House of Horrors

Interestingly, ‘haunted house’ searches have dropped 42% versus the last 45 days and shown a devilish downturn with a 26% decrease compared to last year.


Publisher News: Giving ‘Em Pumpkin to Talk About

Now that you know what consumers are searching for, take some content inspiration for your ad campaigns from top publishers.

POPSUGAR knows consumers are digging up deals for home décor to create their own haunted houses.

Marie Claire is full of content fashion, beauty, and costume ideas for the ghostly season.

Tasty shows the spooky ability to turn candy, pumpkins, and other everyday foods into fun holiday dishes.

Make Campaigns Fang-tastic: Creative Best Practices

No matter which kind of Halloween products you sell, you can cast a spell on consumers and drive sales by ensuring you use the perfect combination of creative elements. Let’s take a look at Taboola’s Trends (US-based, pulled on September 13) that can brew up success.

Looking Fa-boo-lous: Costume Image Trends

If you’re selling Halloween costumes, feature indoor images with women and skip the animals and text.

Bone appetite: Food Image Trends

For food-related campaigns, use close-up photos of men indoors.

Watch ‘Em Scream: Video Trends

Video campaigns should have winter scenes in color but without food or text.

Wickedly Awesome Campaign Titles

Take the guesswork out of titles by using Taboola’s Title Analyzer to see which titles and keywords will deliver the most treats (aka clicks).

Squash Your Goals: Targeting Best Practices

Advertising is all about getting your ads in front of the right people when they are ready to discover your brand or purchase your products. Here are some scary good tips to help you succeed.

SmartBid is like a magic wand. The semi-automatic bidding strategy relies on historical data, increasing bids on impressions most likely to convert while decreasing bids on those least likely.

If your main KPI is pageviews, consider targeting tablets over mobile and desktop, but if your goal is conversions, target mobile devices.

Boo-st your campaigns even further by using Taboola’s High Impact solution. It gives you access to the best ad placements (homepage, mid-article, and the top of Taboola Feed) and innovative formats, including videos, rich media, carousels and stories. You’ll also get access to readership data and ensure your ads are shown in the most brand-safe environments.

Witcha Waiting For?

There’s no time to waste as Halloween will creep up before you know it. As our data shows, consumers have been hunting for holiday products for months now. People are dying to partake in the festivities, and if you follow our advice and launch your campaigns now, you can still capitalize on the bewitching season.

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