It's time to start looking tentatively towards Christmas. Don’t worry, we haven’t got Jingle Bells on just yet, but with Google expecting 4.4 billion Christmas-related searches in the UK this festive season, it’s definitely a good idea to start preparing early. With that in mind, we headed off to Google HQ (for the second time this month) for their 'Plan for Christmas with Google' event and a free mince pie or two. Here's their very useful PDF from the day, 'The Connected Christmas', which is bursting with insights & actionable tips for all advertisers. Here are our favourites ones...Insights

  • In 2008 there were 1.4 billion Christmas-related searches in the UK between October and January. This year Google are expecting a whopping 4.4 billion.
  • Growth is driven by mobile connectivity. Tablets and mobiles are adding 30% additional searches. 60% of Olympics content access was on mobiles.
  • Searching for inspiration starts as early as October.
  • Searches for terms around 'homemade Christmas' correlate with economic worries, and are likely to be big again this year.
  • Recipe searches are the largest single category of advice searches on desktops.
  • 36% of social media users trust brands that have social presence.
  • The value of ecommerce this Christmas will be £7.9 billion.
  • The shopping doesn't stop on the 25th. 13 million hours were spent online shopping on Boxing Day last year.
Top Tips
  • Be found on all screens - desktop, tablets & mobile.
  • Set up separate campaigns & ad groups for Christmas-related terms that you can pause.
  • Target your product campaigns to your store locations so that you can appear in the top search result when people are in your store but comparing prices on their mobile.
  • Connect all your media to your shopping basket with QR codes or NFC.
  • Target everyone from planners (‘book pantomime tickets for January’) to last-minute shoppers (‘Christmas gifts for grandparents with next day delivery’)
  • Get going asap as inspiration searches start in early October.
  • Compliment your PPC Christmas campaign with social media.
Good luck!From the Search Star elves.