Columbia-based Merkle, a technology-enabled, data-driven customer experience management (CXM) company, has released its second quarter 2021 Digital Marketing Report (DMR), which analyzes and highlights trends within paid and organic search, Amazon ads, paid social, and display ad spend.

The report was marked by a strong rebound across channels with year-over-year spikes for Amazon – which hosted its first Q2 Prime Day – along with other key platforms like Google, Facebook, and Instagram. Notable sectors re-entering the digital media environment include travel and “B2B” advertisers, who made their long-awaited growth acceleration.

The Q2 2021 DMR demonstrates changing consumer behaviors with pandemic restrictions easing and vaccines now readily available to a larger portion of the U.S. population. For example, travel sites experienced a 140 percent increase in visits and an 84 percent increase in click volume year-over-year (Y/Y) during the second quarter, following several quarters of Y/Y declines.

Consumer behavior also influenced grocery-led visits, which declined by 17.7 percent year-over year, and big box retailers, which had a 30 percent Y/Y decline. Visits to essential retailer sites declined by 20 percent Y/Y, down from 33 percent Y/Y growth in the first quarter. Overall, retail saw monthly click declines averaging 20 percent.

The supercharged economy was also evident through 15.7 percent Y/Y growth in the high tech/B2B sector, as well as 52 percent increase in clicks Y/Y.