According to digital marketing agency, Wolfgang Digital, Irish interest in is 30% higher than 12 months ago based on Google trends searches data, most likely the result of sterling weakening against the euro by 26%.

As the crucial Christmas shopping period approaches, Wolfgang Digital CEO, Alan Coleman says Irish retailers need a defence plan to prepare for this shopping swing towards English websites.

“This golden Christmas period is make-or-break for Irish retailers and anybody suffering a 30% loss will struggle. Because online shopping is habit forming, the pain of lost custom for Irish retailers who don’t address this could continue into 2017 as consumers form new relationships with UK retailers,” says Coleman.

So how can Irish online retailers take advantage of this record-breaking buying season and steer consumers towards their own websites? Coleman offers the following tips:

– Strong messaging to encourage customers to keep the spend in Ireland. In all of their marketing, Irish online retailers should highlight what makes buying from them better than buying from UK websites – cheaper and faster delivery, speedier returns, and all the benefits of supporting their local community by buying Irish.

– With advances in Google advertising technology, you can now create specific campaigns for specific audiences. So, for example, you make all of your existing customers an “audience”. If your customers go to Google to search for “”, you can target them an ad suggesting they continue to shop with you and you could promote your Reasons to Buy Irish landing page front and centre, winning back customers from the competition’s shopfront.

– Another clever use of ‘audiences’ is to label all your Black Friday website traffic as “Bargain Hunters”, then on St Stephens day when bargain hunters are back out in force, you can advertise to them via Google, Facebook, YouTube and beyond.

– Wolfgang Digital research shows that savvy sales shoppers will be buying big ticket items from their mobiles this sales season, so invest in mobile advertising. From midnight Thursday, average transaction volumes rocket as big-ticket shoppers stay up late on Black Friday eve to get the best deals.

– Embrace Google Shopping. This launched in September in Ireland, and has grown from less that 1% of product searches to 35% today. With Google shopping, searchers can find products for sale from online merchants with search results featuring images, stock availability, pricing and ratings.

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