6 holiday SEO tips (to increase traffic during the shopping season)

Holidays are that time of year when people spend a lot of money on gifts for friends, family and loved ones.

In fact, according to the National Retail Foundation (NRF), American consumers expected to spend about $ 998 on Christmas gifts in 2021.

Historical planned vacation expenses per person from 2004 to 2021;  National Retail Foundation data

This is a fantastic opportunity for SEOs and marketers.

In this post, you’ll learn six simple SEO tips to implement for the holidays so you can rank your pages higher for the busiest seasons of the year.

1. Add internal links to your vacation pages

Internal links are links from page to page on your website. They help PageRank flow around your site, which is important because PageRank is a Google ranking factor.

This means that if you can add internal links from relevant pages on your website to your important vacation pages, you can actually increase their rankings on Google.

Here’s how to do it. First, make a list of all your important pages for the holidays. Next, Sign up for our free Ahrefs Webmaster Tools (AWT) and scan your site.

When the scan is done, go to Connection opportunity report in the Ahrefs site audit. This report will show you relevant linking opportunities on your site.

Internal Linking Opportunities Report, via Ahrefs Site Audit

To find relevant and contextual internal linking opportunities, set the filter to Landing page and search the pages of your holidays.

Review suggested opportunities and add internal links where relevant. We recommend doing this at least a month or two in advance so that Google and other search engine crawlers have time to crawl those pages and discover new links.

Find out more: Internal Links for SEO: A Workable Guide

The holiday season means that people search for specific keywords for the holidays. For example, every year there is a huge spike in dental questions related to Halloween:

Google Trends for the query, "dental halloween"

You should create pages to rank these keywords.

Here’s how to find them:

  1. Go to Ahrefs’ keyword explorer
  2. Enter one or more relevant keywords (for example, if you sell consumer electronics, you can enter keywords like “air fryer”, “headphones”, “laptop” etc.)
  3. Go to Corresponding terms report
  4. Use the To include filter to search for relevant holidays (e.g. Black Friday, Christmas, etc.)
Report on matching terms, via Ahrefs' keyword explorer

Note that keywords related to a vacation do not necessarily have to include the actual name of the vacation. It can be related to the person people are shopping for. For example, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.

Then we can follow the above steps. But this time, in the To include box, we will search for “for dad” and “for mom”. If we do this for the keyword “golf”, here’s what we see:

Report on corresponding terms, with terms such as "for dad" And "for mum" filtered, via Ahrefs Keywords Explorer

When you have a list of good holiday topics to turn to, follow the video below to create pages that can rank for them:

Side note.

As it will take some time to rank for these keywords, create these pages before the holiday season begins.

3. Update seasonal content

Within a single year, the holidays are seasonal. But look at it from a long-term perspective and the holidays are actually evergreen.

For the foreseeable future, holidays like Valentine’s Day, Black Friday, and Christmas are always will be the great shopping seasons. This means that from an SEO perspective, search intent is unlikely to change much.

So rather than creating new pages every year (and deleting the old ones), it will be much better to create an evergreen page that you will update a month or two before the holidays.

This way, you’ll maintain link equity, continue to build authority on that page, and hopefully appear at the top of Google for your target query every year.

For example, this is what TechRadar does every year for its “Black Friday Deals” page. You can see it has consistently held top positions for that page since 2020:

Location history for TechRadar's Black Friday Deals page, via Ahrefs Keywords Explorer

So while it doesn’t get a lot of traffic during the “low season”, it gets a lot of it during the holidays:

Amount of organic traffic that TechRadar's Black Friday Deals page gets, via Ahrefs' Site Explorer

Side note.

While the peak in 2020 seems small, it still received around 150,000 research visits. But keeping the page evergreen has led to even more traffic in the upcoming holiday season, peaking around 1.7 million search visits.

If you’ve already created seasonal pages for previous years, consider redirecting them to your evergreen page.

4. Optimize your Google business profile

If you have a concrete presence, make sure you’ve claimed your Google Business Profile (GBP) and optimized everything (including adding vacation times).

This will ensure that your business has a chance to appear on the Google Map Pack whenever someone searches for something nearby.

"Map pack" for the question, "singapore halloween costumes"

Claiming and optimizing your GBP is a pretty straightforward process, which you can complete in 30 minutes. Just follow the guide here.

The Google business profile also allows you to share updates, offers and events related to your business. They appear in a carousel at the bottom of the Google Business dashboard.

Google Business update from Tinsel Rack

Use it to share deals and offers for the upcoming holiday season.

Learn more about creating great business posts in this short guide from Google.

5. Take advantage of free product listings on Google Shopping

Google Shopping was originally only “pay-to-play”. But in 2020 Google opened it to organic ads.

The organic Google Shopping results for the query, "Axel Arigato"

With 1.2 billion monthly Google Shopping searches, it means you’ll want to be here this holiday season.

To show your products on Google Shopping organic listings, you need a Google Merchant Center (GMC) account.

Google Merchant account setup

Then follow Google’s instructions below on how to show your products for free on Google Shopping.

Find out more: Show your products for free on Google

6. Improve click-through rates (CTRs) for important holiday pages

More clicks mean more visitors. And having more visitors during the holidays probably means more sales.

So ideally you would like to optimize the titles and meta descriptions for your important vacation pages.

Usually, the best way to do this is to test them using search ads. This is because Google Ads will provide you with click data on which title and meta description combinations work best for a particular page.

The problem, however, is that holidays only last for a short period of time. This means there is no time to gather enough data on the combination that will work.

So here’s an alternative method. We can observe how your competitors’ paid ads have performed and use them as inspiration.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Enter a competitor’s ad URL in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer
  2. Go to Ads report
Report on ads, via Ahrefs' Site Explorer

Here, you’ll see their ad copy, the exact landing page they’re sending traffic to, the keywords they’re targeting, and the estimated amount of traffic each ad is generating.

Use it to inspire not only your ad copy, but your paid ad strategy as well!

Find out more: How to Create the Perfect SEO Title Tag (Our 4 Step Process)

Final thoughts

These are some low-impact SEO tips for more organic traffic. But SEO takes time. So, if a vacation is coming up, be sure to implement them soon!

Did I miss any SEO tips for the holidays? Let me know on Twitter.

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By LocalBizWebsiteDesign

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