Estimated to be worth over $70 Billion, the wedding industry continues to attract a variety of apparel companies, lifestyle brands and digital services hoping to serve the needs of the modern bride.
As you can see in this chart, wedding websites tend to enjoy steady traffic from the beginning of the year through the end of the summer, when they begin to decline rapidly in early September. As we move into the end of the 2017 wedding season, let’s take a look at the top wedding websites of the year, and their growth or decline since last year.
Pulling over 1/3 of the entire market, The Knot remains queen bee of wedding websites. Their top planning site competitor, Wedding Wire, came in second with 11% visit share. Notably, both sites increased their market share in the wedding industry this year, confirming an ever-growing demand for reputable research options, planning guides and vendor reviews.
David’s Bridal, the industry’s top bridal gown site, fell over 5% year-on-year, whereas traffic to up-and-comer dress shop BHLDN rose 37% since 2016. By far the fastest growth was seen by Zola, the all-in-one registry aggregation website that Millennials have fallen in love with—Zola.com grew over 3X since the same time last year.
Meanwhile, some of this year’s fast-rising search terms driving traffic to the wedding industry included “david’s bridal” (up 60% since this time last year), “the knot” (up 30%) and “wedding wire” (up 69%). Considering the drop in visitation to DavidsBridal.com this year, seeing growth David’s Bridal searches is initially surprising; however it likely reflects the enduring cultural awareness of this long-standing wedding brand, compared to lesser-known brands like BHLDN, who saw 30% growth in searches since 2016. It’s worth noting, however, that higher search volume does not necessarily translate to increased visitation, return visits, or purchases.
When it comes to popular unbranded searches—meaning search terms that don’t include the name of a brand or company—we saw an increase in queries around “bridal shower games” (up 27%), “wedding websites” (up 49%) and “wedding checklist” searches (up 65%). This offers wedding brands the opportunity to gain organic traffic by producing blog posts like “Top 10 Bridal Shower Games” or “The Ultimate Wedding Checklist.” For website services like Squarespace and Wix, the growth in searches for “wedding websites” offers an encouraging signal that they should continue expanding their wedding website templates and offerings.