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Brands warned to expect a surge in last minute weddings as restrictions lift this June

Tom Shearsmith
24 May 2021

With lockdown restrictions scheduled to lift four weeks from today, eBay Ads UK has suggested that brands should expect a last minute surge in interest in wedding-related purchases, in anticipation of ceremonies getting back on track.

According to new insights, lockdown lifting will prompt a flurry of wedding shopping and preparation, with previous data from eBay showing a spike in wedding-related searches when the government announced the recovery roadmap on 22 February 2021.

On this date, searches for ‘bridal dress’ and ‘bridesmaid dress’ increased 33% and 31% compared to the same day a week before.

And, with eBay Ads UK having observed interest in weddings ramp up one week before ceremonies were allowed to go ahead again last year, brands are being warned to prepare for a surge of last minute planning in the run up to 21 June.

The new insights also suggest that this year will see a rise in at-home and do-it-yourself weddings, providing an opportunity for home and garden brands to engage with couples hosting their special day at home.

On the day of the roadmap announcement eBay saw a 38% boost in searches for the terms ‘wedding’ and ‘marquee’ in the same session compared to the same day a week before. Meanwhile, the next day, shoppers searched for ‘wedding’ and ‘tent’ in the same session 41% more times than the same day a week before, and carried out 30% more searches for ‘wedding’ and ‘craft’, in the same timeframe.

Harmony Murphy, General Manager of Advertising at eBay UK, said: “After a year of lockdowns causing thousands of wedding plans to fall through or be put on indefinite hold, we expect to see a wedding mania this summer as couples rush to finally say ‘I do’. However, it’s clear that the way people plan for weddings has evolved, with preparations becoming more last minute, and more couples opting for a do-it-yourself approach.

“Brands should therefore harness the freshest data insights in order to tap into these changing consumer mindsets. And, with the rise of last-minute nuptials, brands should ramp up their targeting in the coming weeks - so they have just as much to celebrate as new happy couples come June 21st .”

Last week, eBay announced that thousands of sellers offering personalised products will benefit from lower fees and new promotions until March 2022 to help them make the most of the growing demand for personalised gifts.

Selfridges has confirmed it is to offer "one of a kind" weddings this summer, having acquired a license to stage marriage ceremonies in its iconic grade II listed London store.

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