The changing of the clocks and the passing of the long Easter weekend trigger important trends and behavioural changes that brands can benefit from as consumers “spring forward” and summer comes into view, with holiday planning, treat buying, and mobile shopping all on the agenda.

The start of British Summer Time is a trigger for significant changes in consumer behaviour, providing opportunities for savvy brands and retailers to grow their share-of-wallet by adjusting their marketing strategies.

There are three major opportunities that brands should start tapping into to take advantage of these behavioural changes, if they are not already:

Summer holiday spenders

The official start of British Summer Time is a common trigger for consumers to look ahead to last-minute spring getaways to dodge the April showers, mini-breaks to take advantage of the two Bank Holidays in May, and ultimately their summer holidays.

For somebody who has been browsing bikinis and flip-flops, special offers on sun cream and swimming towels could be just the ticket – but not everyone chases the sun with their choice of summer holiday destination. To tap into the lucrative holiday market, use observed insights into what people are actually browsing and buying to make recommendations and promotions more relevant to the individual consumer, whether they’re looking at beach towels or hiking boots.

“Bonus bounce” puts luxury back on the agenda

After a period of abstinence following the excesses of Christmas and New Year, the clock change ushers in bonus season and increased optimism as consumers look ahead to the summer. This is a great opportunity to re-engage with consumers who have browsed your site – or even filled an online basket – without completing a purchase.

One luxury fashion brand that we work with on display advertising campaigns saw click-through rates rise to double the industry average through the use of sophisticated targeting that was based on whether each customer had abandoned their basket, just browsed items without selecting them, or simply visited the brand’s website.

Segmenting your customers based on how frequently they shop with you, and how much they spend, can also help target messaging and price points at the right level to increase the chance of conversion with email and display campaigns.

Smartphones take over as evenings lengthen

As the evenings get warmer and lighter, our insight suggests that consumers will be out and about more than they were over winter, so you need to engage them on the move with targeted messages to their mobile devices. Look out too for an increase in smartphone use over tablets as consumers turn to smaller, more portable devices on the go. Advanced attribution techniques can help you identify any changes in habits when it comes to device usage to ensure you’re targeting consumers in the right way. With increased mobile usage, the summer also presents a prime opportunity for brands to invest in location-specific campaigns.

Consumers are now well and truly out of their winter hibernation mode and have their eyes fixed firmly on the impending arrival of summer. Each of these areas could prove well worth the investment for brands and retailers looking to take advantage of changes to consumers’ priorities and preferences at this time of year. The clocks have ‘sprung forward’, and marketers must get on the front foot as well with relevant and timely insights-driven strategies for the months ahead.

Luke Griffiths

Luke Griffiths


Luke Griffiths, Head of Marketing Solutions EMEA, eBay Enterprise