Summer may be far from over, but consumers are always thinking ahead and it could therefore be a good time for marketers to brush up their back-to-school campaigns.

Yahoo! best practices analyst Mark Melville said a BIGresearch study for the National Retail Foundation found that spending on clothing, laptops, books and other accessories for the school year will top $606.40 (£384.25) per household this year and 30.8 per cent of consumers plan to do their buying online.

He added that pay per click marketing campaigns can tap into this market by setting a “deadline” for potential customers, just as a teacher sets a due date for their students.

Limited special offers or discounts spur sales of “un-fun” but necessary products because customers know they have to buy them and “want to get a bargain at the same time”.

In addition to running these date-specific offers, Mr Melville said marketers also need to tailor their keywords and copy to ensure they are “as specific as your products”, as this will boost targeted clicks and those all-important conversions.

Microsoft’s Bing has already launched its bid to tap into the back-to-school market. The search engine’s Kristin Meldahl said its shopping service will help parents to get the best deal on supplies by allowing them to filter results by price, product or customer review.

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