Carbon DMP | Travel & Home Improvement dominate Jan 2019 intent data

According to Carbon’s unique intent data – other than shopping – Travel, Automotive and Home Improvement were top of mind for consumers.

From taking advantage of the New Year sales and spending Christmas money, to making resolutions and plans for the year ahead; January can be a mixed month for consumer intent. In the table above we can see a selection of the top categories for consumer intent that we tracked on the Carbon network in January 2019. Whilst shopping dominates – both generally and with a range of separate categories – travel, automotive, and home improvement were also key.

With a strong shopping presence within our network as well as post-Christmas and new year sales, Shopping intent gets a particularly strong showing. ‘Shopping’ made up over 25% of the intent signals we saw on our network with ‘gifting’ and ‘couponing’ dominant sub-categories. Furthermore; clothing (8.9%), electronics (7.9%), furniture (2.6%), and appliances (2.5%) were other shopping-related categories dominating consumer intent.


Travel is another early-year focus with many looking to escape the UK winter. For instance; “sunshine Saturday” – the first Saturday in the new year – often sees a flurry of travel bookings as people look to resolve their post-Christmas blues. 7.7% of the intent signals collected across Carbon’s network in January were attributable to travel.

Some of the most popular travel-related intent signals from Carbon’s data in January can be seen above. UK travel is a big standout here and according to Original Cottages, uncertainty over Brexit is fuelling a marked increase in bookings of UK self catering cottages. Similarly, uncertainty around exchange rates could be driving the demand for all-inclusive packages as travellers look to lock-in food & drinks costs.

Meanwhile; early year signals for cruises is a highlight too. Over 2m UK travellers took a cruise for the first time in 2018 with a 2.1% YoY rise for cruise numbers in Summer alone according to CLIA UK & Ireland, who expect a strong 2019 too despite political uncertainties.

Home Improvement

Whilst a pre-Christmas bump for some home improvements categories was seen as many prepared for entertaining over the festive period; early January continued the trend as people shifted to improving their homes for the year ahead. With 4.1% of the intent signals in January related to home improvement, some of the dominant sub-categories included ‘decorating’, ‘building’, ‘lighting’, ‘bathroom’, ‘flooring’ and ‘kitchen’, according to Carbon’s intent data.

Research from AA Financial Services indicated that over the festive period UK consumers would spend £29.6bn on home improvements with decorating, kitchen upgrades and landscaping projects being key areas for improvement. Meanwhile; according to a Hiscox report in late-2018, bathrooms (54%) and kitchens (51%) led the way for future improvements consumers were looking at, with garden (29%) down in third most planned.

Automotive, Health & Fitness, and Personal Finance

Fitness is usually one of the most popular new year’s resolutions as people look to start the year in a healthy manner – whether its for long-term or short-term to get rid of the Christmas weight! Health & Fitness accounted for just over 2% of the intent signals, though related categories such as sporting goods (1.1% of intent signals) could also be factored into this as people take up new sports to get fit.

Automotive represented 4.7% of the intent signals we saw across the network in January 2019. ‘Tires’ and ‘auto-parts’ were key sub-categories, possibly as people prepare for the particularly bad weather.

In terms of personal finance; January can be a hard month for many. With some people paid early in December and the large amounts paid out over the festive period. In addition; with home improvement, travel and other plans many consumers are looking for loans. “Personal finance” accounted for 3.8% of intent signals on the Carbon network in January.

Intent-driven audience creation

Whilst the data showcased above highlights some key insights into a selection of the intent signals Carbon collects on a daily basis, it is what can be done with these intent signals that drive the true power. Intent data drives better targeting for brands, higher yielding audiences for publishers, and better user experiences for consumers.

Using our audience querying tools brands and publishers can create audiences based on demographics, behaviours, interests and intent; whilst our machine learning algorithms also seek out intelligent audiences e.g. audiences showcasing high levels of engagement that may have been missed by a human.

These audiences can then be exported quickly & easily for a number of purposes: anonymously or into branded buckets for data sales; privately to your own ad server or advertisers’ DSP seats (e.g. for direct deals); or made available to RTB advertisers through major DSPs including Adform, Mediamath, and Google, as well as custom audiences on Facebook. Furthermore; all profiled data is made available via a lightweight API too, to plug into a CMS or CRM to personalise UX.

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