Ramadan was a monumental cultural and search milestone in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) earlier this year, featuring the highest-ever peak in Google searches. People across the region made 7.2 billion general searches during the holy month — a 21% jump compared to Ramadan 2022.1
We saw 193 million searches directly related to the occasion — for example “Ramadan meal. That’s 73 Ramadan-specific searches being made every single second — day and night — during that time across the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia, and Egypt.2
Of those 193 million searches, people made around 1.5 million queries related to the Ramadan countdown. This is indicative of people’s excitement and anticipation in the lead-up to the holy month.3
Source: Google internal data, EG, KSA, UAE, All Ramadan-specific queries across Google platforms, 2023
This year, Ramadan retail sales were projected to reach USD $66 billion, despite the impact of inflation. And they look set to grow even more next year, with 56% of people who celebrate Ramadan in Saudi, 64% in UAE, and 74% in Egypt saying they’d spend more during the holy month.
Here are three simple actions your brand can take to capture the full Ramadan 2024 opportunity:
Top tip to entice Ramadan consumers looking for value
Ensure you’re offering consumers value by clearly mentioning anything related to price — like discounts, reductions, or sales — in your Ramadan ad campaigns. If you’re already running sales or discount campaigns and want to ensure you maximise your return on investment, AI-powered Performance Max can help you multiply conversions across the Google Ads inventory. Use it to find untapped growth opportunities from new search queries, Google platforms, and even price-sensitive consumers.
One in five start their preparations three to four weeks before the holy month actually starts.16 We saw search interest for “iftar special recipes” grow by 19X in the lead up, with “Ramadan invitation ideas” on the rise by 70%.
And people are increasingly exploring retail-related Ramadan topics online. We’ve seen a 2.8X rise in retail searches over the past five years.17
But people are not just exploring shopping options for themselves. Ninety five per cent believe that Ramadan is a time for thinking about the needs of others, with 59% spending more on charity this Ramadan versus last.18 Family and friends come into the picture too, with 46% of consumers increasing their gifting budget this holy month compared to last.19
Top tip to entice Ramadan consumers
It’s vital to create demand in those moments that inspired consumers are in the mood to explore. Demand Gen generates and grows demand by helping consumers to discover products and make purchase decisions as they stream, watch, or scroll across Google platforms — including YouTube Shorts. To capture consumers’ attention and drive conversions at moments that matter, ensure your ad creatives are immersive, relevant, and highly visual.
Feeling inspired? Take your Ramadan planning one step further and discover how to own the online video moment during the holy month, uncover the top three video trends likely to shape this year’s Ramadan content, read how a Saudi charity used AI to raise millions of dollars for orphans, and understand how Christian Dior Parfums used augmented reality ads to reach more than 4 million people over Eid.