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Spooky season is upon us—spot top insights for Halloween

September 28, 2022
Three youngsters outdoors, taking a picture of themselves with a mobile

Halloween’s just around the corner, and people are already hitting the stores. In fact, 45% of consumers have said they plan to start their shopping sometime in September.1 Using last year as an example, we can infer that consumers will spend a little over $100 on Halloween gear. The top three categories for Halloween purchases are: Costumes, candy, and decorations.1 Microsoft Advertising Insights investigated past search trends on our network to help you plan your advertising budget accordingly. Here are our top three tricks to set your campaigns up for success this year!

Halloween trick #1

Target parents first, as most Halloween-related searches on the Microsoft Search Network were made by adults aged 35-49 last year.2 This is probably because adults are the ones buying decorations and candy for the household and will be the ones purchasing any children’s costumes. See the following chart for the full distribution of searches made on our network by consumers aged 18-65+.

Bar chart about Halloween-related searches, categorized by age

Halloween trick #2

When planning Search Ads, start elevating your spending in September, but keep the majority of your budget focused on October. When looking at Halloween-related searches made in 2021, we saw that searches started slowly building in early September and continued increasing until the holiday. The week with the highest number of searches last year came around October 23, 2021.

Line graph depicting Halloween searches from September to November 2021

Halloween trick #3

Activate ads on the Microsoft Audience Network earlier than Search Ads to move users down the funnel. In reviewing last year’s insights, we saw that Audience Ads for Halloween started to boost in early summer, around June or July.2 Clicks for costumes and candy peaked at different times; however, costume clicks spiked almost 2 months before candy. This is to be expected since consumer product goods have a shorter lifecycle than apparel categories on average.

Whether you’re already set for your Halloween campaigns or still need to start, leverage these tips to help reach your consumers as they plan for the spooky season! Decorations and costumes are planned until the very last minute, so be sure to keep your ads up through the end of October, target parents, and add the Microsoft Audience Network into your campaign as well.

Microsoft Audience Network clicks-over-time line graph comparing candy and custome categories between June and November 2021

[1] Groundtruth, “Halloween Insights Spotlight”, September 2019,
[2] Insights, “Microsoft Advertising Insights search data”, 2021-2022.


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