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World Cup & sporting events cuts shopping dead says eBay CEO

By Chris Dawson July 12, 2018 - 11:36 am

eBay CEO Devin Wenig has tweeted an interesting factoid after monitoring shopping behaviour around the world cup schedules. Football is killing shopping, but there are some interesting trends.

For the 90 minutes of the game, for the two countries playing eBay have seen a 30% decline in shopping which spreads for about 45 minutes before and after the game finishes. That’s not surprising and is only likely to get greater as the final approaches this Sunday. Don’t expect to get too many sales as football fans around the whole world tunes in to watch the final but especially for the two countries involved in the match.

This should also tell you that it might be worth pausing or adjusting your paid shopping campaigns. There’s no point splashing a ton of cash in territories where fewer people than normal are watching.

Interestingly, Devin also said that post match, shopping recovers quicker for consumers in the country that wins the match – doubtless fans from the losing side are drowning their sorrows whilst the winners turn to shopping in a fit of euphoria. Devin theorises that “It’s counterintuitive but I think part of what is helping is a rush of gear and team branded stuff in post win enthusiasm.”

Again if you run paid search campaigns a lesson for the future is to heavily promote related goods and complimentary products to the winning country post match.

This is a lesson that would apply to all major sporting events. With tennis and football being aired on this coming Sunday, it would be reasonable to expect considerably dampened online sales from when the men’s singles tennis final starts at 2pm until after the World Cup football final finishes after it’s 4pm kick off.

An interesting side note is that Amazon appear to have delayed Prime Day until next week to avoid shopping clashes with the football, but they are holding their Amazon Prime Day Unboxing event this Sunday. It remains to be seen if the World Cup and Tennis finals result in a lower than expected turn out at the events.

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