Holiday season SEO
Start preparing now!

Holiday season SEO: start preparing NOW!

October 09th, 2017 – 11 Comments

It’s only barely getting colder outside, and here we are telling you to think about the snowy days of Christmas. If you have an online shop, please start thinking about the Christmas holiday season already! Because it’s never early enough to start planning for the most wonderful time of the year. Here, you’ll find out what you can do right now.

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Ranking in Google isn’t something you can do overnight, and that is why it’s never too early to start. Remember, the end of the year is approaching rapidly. Don’t forget we also have Black Friday (24th of November) and Cyber Monday (27th of November) coming up as well. You can set up a lot of content for all occasions. In this article, we’ll go over some things you can do to get prepared!

45 days rule published an article about what they called the 45 days rule. Regardless of the fact that you’ll be able to prepare earlier, their concept is interesting. It tells you to get your content in gear at least 45 days ahead, and they divide that period into three steps:

  1. 45 Days in Advance: Post your promotion to your website calendar and post a save-the-date post on social media (including your email newsletter).
  2. 7 Days in Advance: Post an upcoming events post to social media and via email and encourage other small businesses to share it with their followers.
  3. 1 Day in Advance: Post a reminder event post via social media.


Besides the promotion mentioned above, I think you can do a lot more in terms of setting up new pages and renewing old ones. Let’s dig into that a little bit more.

Setting up holiday season gift pages

First, we need to think about what kind of category or special landing pages make sense for the upcoming holidays. You can always set up pages like ‘Best gifts for fathers/girls/teens’, ‘Newest deals for your 6/10/12-year-old’, ‘Best mom/friend/grandparents discounts’ or even think along the lines of ‘Top 10 gifts for outdoor/skiing/parasailing enthusiasts’ and ‘Top 3 deals for stay-at-home moms/dads/etcetera’. Just to name a few.

holiday season preparations: santa on beach

Make your landing or category page, the page title and the meta description fit the upcoming holiday season. Obviously, these pages can be re-used for Valentine’s day and your summer sale. Find old content that fits the holidays, rewrite titles and meta descriptions to match the upcoming season and chances are you won’t have to update the post itself at all.

You can link the all-year holiday season pages mentioned above to, for instance, specific Christmas landing pages (‘Top 7/10/25 gifts for under the Christmas tree’) to boost these when the time has come. That could be around the 45-day mark mentioned by Bigcommerce, but I wouldn’t mind stretching that to 60 days. There has to be enough time for Google and Bing and all the other search engines to follow your links and find your specific holiday season landing pages in time.

Social media

Social media like Twitter and Pinterest can play a huge role in the success of your (online) holiday sale. Take Pinterest for instance. Raise your hand if you or your wife/husband has a Pinterest wish list? Most of us have that, right? If you manage to get the right products on people’s wish lists, that can have an impact on your sales. Personally, I like to draw inspiration from other people’s wish lists as well. To bring attention to your products, Facebook posts, and Facebook advertising is great. It’s all about creating demand.

In the previous section, I’ve also mentioned top 10 lists. We all know these work pretty well on social media. Similar to this, I’d recommend setting up holiday gift guides and sharing these. A good example is the Huffington Post Holiday Gift Guide. This is pretty clever. Huffington Post simply created a taxonomy for Holiday Gift Guide and added all posts that fit into this category. It creates a nice overview for all kinds of gifts for a plethora of people. ELLE has a page like that as well, and so do more companies.

New products

Following shopping guides, I’d also like to emphasize that this is an excellent time to pitch new products. If you know of potential best-sellers for the upcoming holiday season, be sure to start writing about these now. Think about how tech sites write about concept iPhones, features that might be added and things like that. The more you write about these products upfront, the more likely the sales pages for these products will rank when it matters. Obviously, you should link all pages that you made in advance to that one main page you’ll set up when the product is released and can be bought. Treat that page like cornerstone content.

Re-using content

Old wine in new bottles. If you have a Christmas guide for 2017, feel free to re-use that in 2018. Update the year, and update details like popular brands and popular products for that year. If the slug of your URL is /christmas-2017/, change that to /christmas-2018/ around August next year and redirect the old URL to the new one. No need to create a totally new page. It would be a waste of nice inbound links to not re-use that old URL. Of course, this is even easier if you simply don’t include the year in the URL.

In the months before the holiday season, you could even simply repost popular posts from last year (a bit adjusted if needed) on social media. Valentine’s Day might even become Secret Santa. Cyber Monday might match daddy’s favorites for Christmas. These are probably small adjustments; perhaps just adding ‘this Christmas’ to a meta description or title will do.

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Optimize for speed and mobile

Last but not least, we recommend you check and optimize your website for speed and mobile. These are recommendations you’ll get from any SEO blog or consultant, everyday all day. Mobile, mobile speed and speed in general, are becoming more important every year (or day, for that matter). When preparing your website for the holiday season, this is a good a time as any to re-check your mobile website and site speed and update or improve these, if possible.

That wraps it up. You can never start too early when your online business depends on the holiday season. Be prepared; start now!

Read more: ‘eCommerce usability: the ultimate guide’ »

11 Responses to Holiday season SEO: start preparing NOW!

  1. Brandfrys
    By Brandfrys on 17 October, 2017

    Very effective tips, You have explained them very well. The holiday season is just on the way and its the right time to focus on SEO and get some ranking which will drive some leads later on.

  2. HiCinko LLC
    By HiCinko LLC on 12 October, 2017

    Commendable. I will look into all this precious information and will also follow this to make my SEO thing kicking!

  3. Buy Business Class
    By Buy Business Class on 12 October, 2017

    Will definitely follow this! I hope it will be helpful.

  4. Explorer Whiz
    By Explorer Whiz on 12 October, 2017

    Wow! this is really knowledgeable trivia! Kudos

  5. Tony R
    By Tony R on 10 October, 2017

    On using old URLs, if the slug of your URL is /christmas-2017/, I would add something like, “/christmas-gift-guides-2018/”

    • Michiel Heijmans
      By Michiel Heijmans on 11 October, 2017

      Thanks for your comment.

      Did you do keyword research for that, Tony? I wouldn’t just suggest/implement changes like that. In my post, it’s just an example. But if I’d use your URL, I’d test that first, only to find that “christmas gift ideas” would be much better according to Google Trends :)

      Just pointing out that there’s more to it than just changing the URL like that.

  6. safari
    By safari on 10 October, 2017

    Thank you very much to share Holiday seasons gift to attract visitors, good idea, i love this idea.

  7. SEO Michigan
    By SEO Michigan on 10 October, 2017

    Thanks Michiel for sharing this information with yoast followers… I’m using Yoast last 2 years… very helpful plugin!

  8. Supriya Chakraborty
    By Supriya Chakraborty on 10 October, 2017

    Thank you for posting this informative blog on how to setup a festive campaign. It is a great way of boosting audience engagement and increasing the conversion rate. Please keep on sharing more helpful articles in the upcoming posts.

  9. Yum Yucky
    By Yum Yucky on 9 October, 2017

    Very, very helpful. Thank you!

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