Wirecutter will launch its own deals event Aug. 21
Deals are becoming a bigger piece of Wirecutter’s brand, so The New York Times-owned commerce publisher on Aug. 8 is launching a deals holiday. On Wirecutter Deals Day, Aug. 21, shoppers can get exclusive price cuts on products like Lenovo laptops and ones from newer companies like lamp company Fully and housewares company Snowe that never or rarely discount their prices online.
In the lead up to Deals Day, Wirecutter will promote the sale on its social channels, email newsletters, homepage and articles on topics including how to spot counterfeit merchandise and how to evaluate third-party online retailers.
The Deals Day is a way for Wirecutter to set itself apart from other commerce-focused publishers — not, the publisher stressed, an attempt to compete with Amazon Prime Day or Cyber Monday.
“We are an editorial department, we’re not a retailer,” said Adam Burakowski, Wirecutter’s deals editor. “I don’t ever think of this as one of the big deal days.”
Wirecutter is best known for its exhaustively detailed product guides, but deals have become a bigger part of the site. Its deals page consistently ranks among the site’s five most-visited every month. Burakowski’s team keeps track of a database filled with over 5,000 products sourced from over 850 guides, watching to see when they go on sale. Over the past 12 months, its deals-focused newsletter has grown to nearly 100,000 subscribers, a six-fold increase.
Last year, Wirecutter developers overhauled the site’s CMS so deals could get published faster. During tentpole holidays including the most recent Prime Day, the site hires extra contributors to keep up on all the deals. Wirecutter has a deals Twitter account with over 54,000 followers.
With deals becoming popular with readers, Burakowski early this year set out to see if a discount-averse brand that was popular with Wirecutter’s audience would give readers an exclusive discount. Wirecutter got Xtreme Comforts, which sells a pillow that’s one of Wirecutter’s top 50 sellers, to offer a discount. The pillow instantly became a top 10 seller, convincing Burakowski to build a program for exclusive deals.
Most of the products sold in the Deals Day will be in the housewares and office categories. Burakowski said he sees room for expansion into other categories as well.
Being able to use programs like Deals Day to show it can deliver business outcomes for brands will be key to Wirecutter’s continued growth, observers said.
“With CPM and CPC [cost per click] having been completely crushed over the past few years, they’re moving to a place where they can take their authority and trustworthiness and they can monetize it directly,” said Bill Konrad, co-founder and co-CEO of digital consultancy and user exerience design firm Konrad. “It’s kind of the 2018 Groupon strategy but with authority and quality guarantees and journalism backing it.”
Member Exclusive‘Math doesn’t add up’: Publishers still face tough choices
“Just salary cuts will at most bring the costs down by 10%, at most, I can guarantee,” one exec messaged me.
Complex Networks plans to diversify its way through the pandemic
Complex Networks bills itself as one of the most diversified digital media companies in the business, so it’s counting on diversification to protect its business.
‘Rats out of the sewers’: Ad fraudsters are leaping on the coronavirus crisis
For ad fraudsters, the coronavirus pandemic is a crisis too tempting to go to waste. Website traffic is surging. But with advertisers adding coronavirus-related keywords to their block lists and others pausing spend altogether, ad prices on news sites are low. With less competition in the auction, low quality ads — and even publishers’ own […]
SponsoredRegulations are prompting publishers to develop new strategies around user log-ins
In a post-GDPR and post-cookie world, more publishers are making concerted efforts to explain the value of their content to users and increase the volume of consumer authentication.
WTF are post-auction discounts?
Post-auction discounts let advertisers compete in the auction as if it bid $6 or $7 or more, but then benefit from a discount after winning the auction.
Highsnobiety closes commerce, cuts 25% of staff
Highsnobiety was one of a few publishers who invested in product creation for its commerce business, rather than just peppering its site with affiliate links.