‘Tis the Season for SEO: Gearing Up for Holidays with Seasonal SEO

The phenomenon of “Christmas creep” has our holiday season starting earlier each year, encroaching on earlier fall holidays like Halloween. For Americans, Black Friday, the day after their Thanksgiving , marks the beginning of the mad rush to the stores. This year, though, big discounters like Costco have started the Christmas creep even earlier.

Shopping for Christmas well before Labor Day?  Retailers have to compete and advertise for their holiday specials earlier and earlier to gain recognition in organic searches. Most customers may not have started to shop for Christmas yet, but retailers should already be implementing a seasonal SEO strategy.

This Christmas is expected to have lackluster sales; but that makes it all the more important that retailers effectively target consumers and become very visible.  Two crucial days are Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which is the Monday after Black Friday.  Trends show that while shoppers may hit the physical shops on Friday, they are back indoors searching for the best promotions and prices on the internet.

Many sites prepare for the onslaught of virtual shoppers by instituting a code freeze, or disallowing any changes on their website. While this reduces the chance your system will have a meltdown during this most crucial time, it does make your site less attractive to the search engines.  Using a proxy SEO platform is a good way to keep current with keywords and trending topics while implementing your code freeze.  Otherwise, optimise your site now and do not make major changes during the holiday season.  Make sure links are active and that holiday-related pages (like gifts, ornaments, etc.) are easily reached by consumers.

Employing other effective SEO techniques, such as creating a “Gift Ideas” page (“gift” being one of the most commonly searched for term), using targeted and accurate meta descriptions, blogs, and social media, and incorporating “free” into your site – “free shipping,” “free gift wrapping,” are two good examples that will draw customers.

The holiday season begins earlier and earlier: get ready for the shoppers with an optimsed site.  Even if sales are expected to be sub-par, consumers will be looking for deals.  Help them find you.

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