It’s no secret that the holidays are the biggest time of the year for businesses. Many small shops rely on the burst of traffic that the holiday season tends to bring. That’s why you need to prepare for the holiday season by ramping up your website for proper Holiday SEO.
We recommend starting this process a little early, about 50 days to be exact. You see, you can’t start ranking on Google the day before a holiday. You need time for search engines to crawl the site and for people to come to you naturally. That’s why should probably begin around the middle of October. That way, you’re covered for Black Friday and Cyber Monday as well.
50 days rule
50 Days in Advance: Change the layout of your website and then create a scheduled post on social media to promote the upcoming sale you have for the intended holiday. This will also include your email newsletter if you have one.
10 Days in Advance: Post another reminder through all your platforms to remind people of what you have in-store.
1 Day in Advance: Last time, send out another reminder, telling them it’s time for the promotion.
These steps only apply to marketing your sale though. There are a few other things you’ll need to do to optimize your pages for Holiday SEO.
You need to create customized landing pages that adhere to the rules of your deal and the products that people will get a discount on. You should also title these temporary pages like “Holiday Spirit Flash Sale,” let them know that these products are only here for a short time. You can also consider which of your products perform the best and create pages according to that. Maybe you sell t-shirts and notice that you see parents buying for the children during the holidays. You could then create a page that says “Holiday Sale: Kids and Teen Clothes: 50% Off.”
Holiday SEO Preparations
Since your landing page is going to draw in traffic for a specific holiday crowd. You need to make the Meta description fit the page you’re creating. Make sure the title, keyword usage, and Meta description all fit the goal you’re going for. Take a look at the example below for Kirkland’s.
Their title is simple and straight to the point. They have a holiday sale for home décor. Their Meta description reflects that by going a little further into it. They also feature their keyword of “Holiday Sale” in both, along with their company name to set them apart.
You also need a way to advertise frequently. The best way for small businesses to do this is through social media. Social media, especially Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest can influence your holiday traffic in a huge way. If you run reminders, like the ones mentioned above, in regular intervals, you can engage with your audience more dynamically. Most of these platforms also have ad campaigns that you can create to target new people based on criteria you choose (age, gender, hobbies, etc.). These platforms remain much cheaper than Google AdWords too. I will say that they aren’t as powerful and therefore not as successful, but we’ve seen some good results.
The holiday season is a great time to start introducing people to new products. If you’ve been wary about testing something new for your store, there’s no better time than the holiday season. People are in the buying mood so as long as you keep your trusted products or services at the top, you can make room for your new items a little further down the page.
If you’ve made pages for previous years, like the ones mentioned above. There’s no reason you shouldn’t re-use that material. It saves you a lot of time, hassle, and space on your website. By updating your existing pages, you also stay ahead of the curb because search engines have had the luxury of browsing your pages already. Just make sure the product is the same or similar to what you were offering last year and update any mentions of dates as well.
Maybe the most important thing you do to get ready for Holiday SEO is to optimize page speeds for your new pages and overall site. A lot of your holiday traffic will come from mobile, especially new users. You need to make sure your site is fast or they will most likely move to on to something else. If you take away anything from this article, make sure its MOBILE SPEED! You should be testing and tweaking well in advanced.