Custom content could encourage more sales this Thanksgiving weekend.

It’s Thanksgiving weekend – the starting line for the biggest shopping season of the year. As consumers open their wallets and begin to purchase products for their loved ones, marketers closely monitor their efforts to make sure their strategies pay off. It may be Turkey Day, but it’s never too late for some last minute content marketing adjustments that put branded content in front of buyers this holiday weekend.

IgnitionOne recently highlighted the 2010 and 2011 shopping trends that shaped past Thanksgiving weekends. Marketers should consider these statistics as clear indicators of what to expect this year, though every shopping season brings a few surprises.

In 2011, the biggest sales uptick occurred on Cyber Monday, which recorded $1.25 billion in sales and was considered the heaviest online shopping day in history. Fifty percent of those sales came from professionals purchasing goods at work, as they likely couldn’t get to stores to take advantage of the highly publicized deals on Black Friday.

Many Americans depend on Thanksgiving weekend for appealing deals. In 2010, this weekend raked in $45 billion in sales, but in 2011, retailers calculated $52.4 billion – a 16 percent year-over-year increase, according to CNN. More, 226 million consumers visited brick-and-mortar stores or shopped online in 2012, up from 212 million the previous year.

IBM Cyber MondayWhen looking at Cyber Monday specifically, IBM’s Cyber Monday Benchmark Report notes that sales increased 33 percent in 2011 from the previous year, and social chatter leading up to the day rose by 115 percent year-over-year.

While online marketers might not have offline stores to take advantage of Black Friday’s historic events, Cyber Monday remains an invaluable date for brands that want to significantly increase profit margins. Developing custom content that sparks social chatter could be the ideal way to encourage an uptick in sales this year, as consumers spend more time showrooming products and discussing trends via social media before they buy.

Ted Karczewski is an Executive Communications Associate at Brafton. He works to develop his own voice and apply his passions to the evolving world of SEO and content marketing, but he doesn't shy away from writing for fun. After graduating from Suffolk University, Ted used his Communications degree to test out Sports Journalism before Marketing at Brafton.