It happens every year – the holidays are creeping up on us.
Whether you end up searching for the right gift for someone or rushing to ensure that the perfect products to sell get in front of shoppers, you need to make the most of the time you have.
So if you haven’t started shopping yet, go ahead.
And if you haven’t already posted your holiday marketing strategies, it’s time to prioritize and get to work.
After all, the holidays basically start on November 26th. This means that by then you will need to have your strategies in place so you can fine-tune, test and focus on fulfilling orders.
The limits of search engine optimization
January is the time to start planning big keyword strategies for the holidays that year.
SEO takes time. If you need to develop backlinks and create content to secure rankings, the time to start SEO planning and strategizing for the 2022 season is probably now.
This does not mean that all hope is lost.
There are strategies (including memberships) that can help you make the most of this year, even with just a few weeks left until the start of the holidays.
Here are our top five tactics to help you get the most out of the 2021 holiday season.
Holiday Marketing Tactic 1: Offers
This is a gift from Google to active business owners with their own Google My Business listings. Brodie Clark first detected a change in local search results to include offers in map results.
Latest in Local SEO: Prepare Display Posts – Google is now testing giving them more visibility in search
Now shows a View + Label icon in the map package/local finder (new), with the menu showing all views together (normal).
– Brody Clark (@brodieseo) September 30, 2021
There are a number of great reasons to add offer posts in Google My Business but until this change a lot of the benefits revolved around branded queries.
Now, posts will launch additional information into your map result, which is especially important for local SEO.
It can potentially help rank by boosting relevance to terms in offers, as well as improving click-through rates.
This feature was only recently rolled out, and as such it’s likely that a lot of your competitors won’t pick it up yet.
Might I suggest starting dates close to Black Friday, so they don’t run in advance — no need to get your hands on the tactic just yet.
To set these up, just head to Google My Business, create a post, and select:
And create your offer.
Holiday marketing tactic 2: Repurpose your pages
If you’re offering Black Friday or other holiday sales, make the page evergreen.
What I mean by this is that if you have regular holiday sales, you’ll always want to host the current show at the same URL as the previous one.
There are a few different ways to approach this, depending on how many vacations you need to host your landing pages.
You can host all sales on the same URL (eg – domain.com/sales/), different sales as different URLs (eg – domain.com/black-friday/), etc.
To get an idea of the simplest benefit, let’s take a look at Amazon’s Black Friday page:
They host it on the same URL every year and are now taking advantage of that. When their next sale goes live, they’ll have a strong, relevant page.
As mentioned above, you can have a page for each holiday or just one that focuses on the dominant page of your business.
If for any reason you want to keep your previous shows online, you can simply move them to a new subpage.
For example, if you were Amazon, you could host last year at:
Holiday Marketing Tactic 3: Focus on SERP Features
There may be inquiries that you want but can’t have. Queries that are too far behind your weight class (it’s 2022 kick-off time, right?).
For some of these queries, it’s best to focus on SERP features and think outside the box about how you can target them.
For example, rating “cod vanguard” will put you against game developers, and “buy cod vanguard” will put you against sites like Microsoft and Playstation.
You might be OK with the local results if you can beat sites like Best Buy.
Or you can target areas that are less concentrated in the search results.
Each of the red squares represents an opportunity.
Create videos. Focus on Twitter and Google News. Every query is different.
Think about how people refine and target their queries.
If you’re focusing on an area like the example above, think about who your audience is and craft what they want.
For example, it’s the holidays and a lot of the videos about this game are just trailers and trailers.
That’s fine for now but in late November and December it will be parents who are looking to buy the game as a gift. A better focus might be on a video focusing on the assessment with examples of how he got it and who he’s right for.
After all, you’re not trying to win over the person who wants the gift – they actually want it.
You are trying to provide content and context for the gift giver.
Additional tip: For a scenario like this where you might actually tell the person that they don’t want to give the game to your 8-year-old, you might want to create a page on your site to direct them to it. This is where you can review some of the popular games on these criteria and give them suggestions, along with a link to the page where they can purchase the game.
Holiday Marketing Tactic 4: Trends
As we noticed with the addition of Offers functionality above, it looks like Google is looking for some useful tools for marketers this holiday season.
Another new feature takes a tactic I talked about earlier — paying attention to this holiday trend’s terms — and makes it easier.
Until recently, you had to look at your keyword data to extrapolate this information:
While you’d still like to do this, Google is now showing people how individual queries are trending over the past three months:
You can still look back, I recommend using Google trends Also, but it’s great to be able to see what’s going on right now.
Fifth Marketing Tactic: Advertising
Budgets may be tight, but it really takes money to make money.
When people think of Google Ads or Microsoft Advertising, they generally think in terms of search ads, which can be very expensive.
If you’re on a budget, there’s still a place for you in display ads. Namely: Remarketing.
There are two angles you can take on this (and I recommend both, if you can manage it).
The first is simple remarketing. You place your ads in front of people who have visited your site.
Better yet, focus your ads on the section of the site they went to (I mean, I was looking for a COD Vanguard, not a new dishwasher, Walmart!).
It’s low cost and a great way to spread your holiday messages to people who have visited your site.
Get started now so you can build your audience.
Additionally, one of the unsung heroes of remarketing in my opinion is customer lists. Upload your customer lists to Google and remarket to them. You can also expand this list by remarketing to people similar to those in your lists/audiences.
Use this in conjunction with your email campaigns to make sure your holiday messages reach your audience at multiple touchpoints.
Like traditional remarketing, it’s generally more affordable because you’re in front of people who already know you, with your holiday offers.
The above information is meant to be used in conjunction with other strategies we hope you will publish and read about here in Search Engine Journal.
Now is the time to put everything in order, as there is a lot to do, and you will need time to test these strategies and combine them with others.
And remember, once the holidays are over, it’s time to start planning for 2022.
After all, every strategy is amplified by the success of the others. You’ll learn more and have the momentum to start getting bigger terms and working with bigger audiences.
- Holiday SEO and Marketing Strategy: Gain more traffic, rankings, and sales
- The best social media campaign ideas to try
- The Complete Guide to Holiday Marketing
Featured image: Jemastock / Shutterstock