Holiday Ideas & Strategies

8 Holiday SEO Tips to Maximize Cyber Monday and Black Friday Traffic

Kevin Jones / 5 min read
holiday seo hero 2018

8 Holiday SEO Tips to Maximize Cyber Monday and Black Friday Traffic

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SEO can be a huge driver of Cyber Monday and Black Friday ecommerce sales.

To reap those SEO benefits, you need a well thought out Black Friday and Cyber Monday marketing strategy.

Starting early is the absolute best – and recommended – way to make sure you maximize your SEO opportunities.

However, there are things you can do even in the 11th hour (i.e. very last minute) to drive more organic traffic, save on some ad spend (or redirect it to new channels and audiences) and ultimately win more customers.

There isn’t much low-hanging ecommerce fruit left – so you have to act fast.

Here is how to optimize your current SEO strategy for Black Friday and Cyber Monday right now.

Things To Consider When Creating Your Holiday SEO Strategy

Similar to your typical SEO strategy, starting early and planning are two of the most crucial steps.

We’ll walk through how to begin that if you haven’t already.

Or, if you are reading this days before the event itself, skip over the first two steps to get into what you can do now –– with existing keywords, pages, and collections (like getting that word out of your URLs) –– right now.

1. Start your holiday SEO strategy early.

To earn higher page rankings and conversions when it matters most, start the process well before the holiday season.

While November might be okay to whip up a last minute blog post, it can take a few weeks for Googlebot to scan your site and for you to fine tune your keywords.

Below, we’ve gathered a few best practices and SEO tips to help you start the SEO audit process early and make sure your products and promotions are seen this holiday shopping season.

2. Identify holiday-related keywords.

Keyword research is a huge part of a successful holiday SEO campaign.

However, forming a list of holiday-specific keywords will help your business attract new customers searching for the perfect gift.

Dig into Google Trends reports and keyword planner to discover which search terms customers are frequently using and update your keywords for these changes.

When using keyword planner you should segment traffic by month to see potential opportunities.

Average search volume does not always reveal keywords with huge holiday sale opportunities. You will notice below that search volume tends to start increasing around September.

holiday seo google keywords

3. Consider Black Friday and Cyber Monday landing pages.

A simple, but often overlooked tactic is creating Black Friday and Cyber Monday landing pages.

These pages allow you to accomplish a few things:
  1. This page can rank for Black Friday/Cyber Monday search queries for your particular niche. Search traffic increases dramatically leading up to the day.
  2. Get potential customers to sign up for your email list . You can then send them emails on these days.
  3. Use sign ups to retarget these customers on Facebook.

In the theme of starting early, create holiday landing pages to tell your loyal customer base what is coming soon.

Even if you haven’t completely finished your online merchandising for your holiday line, post a few buzzworthy styles as a sneak peak.

Not only will this excite your customers, but it will work in favor of your SEO.

Use these landing pages to start building links and begin ranking on relevant holiday search queries.

Google bots like to see well-ranking pages that are consistently updated; therefore, update the page as regularly as you can during the holiday season.

This will boost traffic to that page and ultimately drive increased holiday sales.

Example Landing Pages:

Kettlebell Kings:

Kettlebell Kings sees a huge increase in organic traffic that includes variations of “Black Friday/Cyber Monday Kettlebell Deals” as November approaches.

Creating landing pages for Black Friday kettlebell deals and Cyber Monday sales allows Kettlebell Kings to generate sales from customers looking for deals via organic traffic.

Kettlebell Kings recommends that you get landing pages up as soon as possible so they can start ranking on Google.

holiday seo kettlebell kings

Rock Bottom Golf:

Rock Bottom Golf uses a similar tactic and has landing pages for users looking for Cyber Monday and Black Friday Golf deals.

holiday seo rock bottom golf

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4. Be smart with your internal links and backlink acquisition.

Links are an important part to a successful SEO strategy.

Internal links will help Google better crawl and understand your website, and external backlinks increase both the credibility of your content and the chance that people will find your page.

As you take inventory of your existing SEO performance, make a note of which pages are already doing well.

As you strategize where to include internal links, use these landing pages to display holiday promotions and optimize exposure that already exists.

To build up your external links, use the holiday season for blogger outreach. The more trusted voices you have talking about your product, the better your product pages will perform on search engines.

A link building campaign has positive ramifications beyond SEO.

When you find people who are interested in your content, you are essentially doing a form of business development.

You may connect with customers, partners, or influencers who can help you find more of the former.

5. Create holiday gift guides.

Gift guides do particularly well because they offer a wide variety of products shoppers are likely searching for or will share on social media.

In addition, prominently advertised gift guides decrease the number of clicks between your homepage and your holiday product pages.

This is a plus for SEO bots scouring your site, as well as a helpful tool to convert shoppers who search by general terms such as, “best holiday gifts for girls” or “top technology gifts.”

Be sure to use a gift guide technology or create a new webpage rather than launching a micro-site.

The difference here is in where this page lives.

This might not seem like a big difference, but for SEO it is huge.

The first link will reap the benefits of all the SEO your site has already gained, while the second has to start from scratch.

Opt for webpages, not micro-sites.

6. Revisit your load times.

Every one-second delay in page load time decreases customer satisfaction by 16% and conversion rates by 7%.

Use the holiday season as a reminder to revisit the load times of your top landing pages.

In Google Analytics, visit the Site Speed tab to monitor load times and cross check this with your page performance.

One issue affecting site load times could be your images.

Remember, save all images for the web (you can do this in Photoshop) or use a converter tool (like TinyPNG) to compress large images.

BigCommerce automatically makes sure your images are optimized for the web and mobile using Akamai image manager.

7. Don’t forget about mobile.

Last year, 28% of all holiday retail sales were influenced by shopping-related mobile searches.

Similar trends have continued this year as omnichannel selling becomes the standard of the retail industry.

75% of shoppers use their mobile devices in-store to research products while 25% make purchases on their smartphones in-store.

And, as on-the-go shoppers will be in a hurry to complete their shopping, local SEO will influence whether your business appears at the top of their mobile search.

Before the holiday season begins, be sure your store is ready for mobile shoppers.

8. Revamp past articles and find the low-hanging fruit.

If you don’t already have Google Search Console set up, it’s now your highest SEO priority.

This is the one place where Google still tells you something about how your website performs in their search engine, so don’t neglect this SEO tip.

From there, sort by impressions and see which queries are getting impressions but rank just within or outside the top 10.

These present opportunities for you to make the ranking page more relevant for this term.

A quick checklist:

  • Page Title tag – is the keyword at or near the beginning of the title tag? An improved title tag can also impact click through rate – oftentimes in a big way.
  • H1 – does your page header include the keyword?
  • Body – is the keyword mentioned at least 2-3 times in the body of your article?
  • Alt text – if you have images relevant to the keywords you find, include them in the alt tag where it makes sense.

From there, flip to the page view and see which other keywords you can increase visibility for.

Lastly, see where you can reference this page from other places on your site.

Choose anchor text that provides more context about the page content.

One thing to note: don’t think of this as keyword stuffing.

If you do that, your users will notice and conversion rates will fall off.

Value your relationship with customers over everything else.

Only add keywords which are relevant for the topic, but aren’t emphasized right now.

Oftentimes, Google parses through your content and draws conclusions about what to rank a page for — and the results can surprise you.

Take the information that Google gives you in Search Console and use it to capture more organic traffic.

Executive Summary

Your goal should be to start strategic planning for holiday shopping earlier in the year, because that is the best way to begin optimizing and ranking for Cyber Monday and Black Friday keywords.

However, these last-minute SEO tips can be beneficial if you implement them now.

Launch conversion optimized landing pages like Kettlebell Kings and Rock Bottom Golf.

Be smart with your internal and backlinking strategy to these pages.

Make sure your site is fast and optimized for mobile visitors by focusing on your local SEO too.

Happy holiday selling!

Want more insights like this?

We’re on a mission to provide businesses like yours marketing and sales tips, tricks and industry leading knowledge to build the next house-hold name brand. Don’t miss a post. Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

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