5 Important Content Factors to Consider for Holiday Shopping SEO Success

This holiday season, a strong online presence in search is critical for sales success. Learn about 5 important content considerations that can help.

Analysts predict a strong holiday shopping season for retailers, with revenue increases of 7% to 9% over last year. According to Deloitte, holiday sales between November and January could reach $1.3 trillion.

Over two-thirds (66%) of shoppers looking to shop in-store will search online for the best locations, gifts, and deals. The stakes are higher than ever for eCommerce retailers, as competition is fiercer than ever.

A strong online presence in search is critical for both brick-and-mortar and online retailers this holiday season.

In this column, you’ll find five tips you can use right away to get your retail gifts ready for the oncoming holiday rush.

1. Put Your SEO Insights To Work This Holiday Shopping Season

Use Your SEO Insights This Holiday Shopping Season Businesses are being challenged to meet consumers with optimizations and personalization that meet their needs today, not what they were years or months ago.

Over a year and a half of disruption caused by the pandemic has demonstrated the importance of real-time customer insights.

If retailers only use data from previous holiday seasons to inform this year’s campaigns, they will be catering to an audience that has largely moved on.

SEO insights are as close to real-time customer feedback as you can get.

To inform holiday content creation and campaign planning, marketers should look at macro trends and industry-wide conditions, as well as their consumer search insights, on-site behavior, reviews, and other real-time data.

Gathering, analyzing, and implementing these insights on any scale necessitates the use of a technological solution to automate collection and analysis. Some solutions can use that data right away with automated personalization.

2. Anticipate Emerging Trends

In terms of macrotrends, it’s critical to be aware of the items that consumers are most interested in purchasing this year.

These trends could be influenced by where people are in their recovery from the pandemic and the restrictions it imposes.

For example, as many lockdowns ended across the country last spring, clothing and luxury items such as cologne became hot ticket items.

It’s critical to be aware of emerging trends in the geographic areas you serve and target with paid advertising.

Analyzing the keywords people use to find your locations, digging into your Google business insights, exploring trends, and social listening can all provide hints as to which product or service categories are likely to take off shortly.

For example, BrightEdge (my company internal )’s data shows growth spikes and drops in various categories. This data suggests that apparel and footwear will be big this year, as nearly half of the keywords tracked are expected to be up 20% from last year.

3. Tailor Content to Holiday Shopping Intentions and Demand

This year, it’s all about matching your content and campaigns to the search content of consumers looking for products and services similar to yours.

This entails not only comprehending the “what,” but also comprehending why specific consumers may be looking for your products.

Optimizing your video and image descriptions and alt text can help them be found on YouTube, Google Images, and in rich search results.

Ensure that each page has appropriate keyword-rich headers, titles, and other on-page elements. Remember to go beyond keywords with descriptive content that reflects your understanding of the problem your shopper is trying to solve.

Make sure you’re tailoring the entire content experience from beginning to end, and that the post-click destination matches the intent of the searcher who clicked on that ad or search result.

Wherever possible, use AI-powered technology to personalize content in real-time, better meeting the expressed needs of searchers and site visitors. According to research, personalized product recommendations result in a 26% increase in average order value (AOV).

Read SEO Tips for Small Business: 5 Ways To Rank Better.

4. Put the searcher’s shopping experience first

Make sure your website’s infrastructure can withstand the increased traffic during the holiday season.

For several years, page speed has been critical for customer experience and conversion. However, with the introduction of Core Web Vitals and the page experience update, Google intends to reward retailers who provide better experiences with increased visibility across search, local, and mobile.

Simply put, if your competitors are optimizing for CX and you are not, you may miss out on that customer.

It is critical to have a technically sound website. Ensure that images are sufficiently compressed, use a CDN where possible, and do whatever else is necessary to keep interaction times under 0.1 seconds.

Add a minimum, use breadcrumb, and use item schema to structure your data. Assist Google in determining how your content is the best answer for each relevant searcher.

5. Consider the interaction throughout for maximum search impact

Shopping for the holidays is no longer a straight line. When it comes to the holiday shopper’s journey, the walk into store > browse shelves > select item > pay at the cashier is now a rarity.

Customers may be in your store and interacting with your customer service representatives, but they may also be searching online for comparison pricing, nearby locations that may sell the same products, and eCommerce options.

Even if you have won the click and the visitor is interacting with your landing page, they may be searching and browsing for deals as well.

You must deliver content that encourages shoppers to take the next step at each touchpoint and interaction.

It begins with optimized content that performs well in search and is discovered by motivated consumers who are open and receptive to new brands, products, and ideas.

However, the next stage of that interaction must deliver.

Your lead magnets must deliver in terms of content relevance, how the content loads and displays, whether the information provided answers all of the shoppers’ questions, and so on.

Don’t make them look for deals, coupons, or reviews. Most likely, they will simply go to another retailer that makes shopping a more seamless experience.

Keep in mind that the same customer may choose to interact with you through different channels for a variety of reasons. They could be searching for something, using Facebook Messenger to ask questions, and then going in-store to complete the purchase.

76 percent of customers prefer different channels depending on their needs.

Examine each journey as a whole and make sure there are no rest stops along the way. For example, you don’t want to run Google Ads that drive traffic to stores after they’ve closed.

Similarly, it is pointless to spend money promoting items that are out of stock.

Touchpoint Quantity Will Lose to Quality Experiences This Holiday Season, Go Shopping

This holiday season, quality will triumph over quantity – quality interactions, messaging, and experiences will drive sales among a consumer base tired of the information overload that comes with a long pandemic.

Concentrate on determining which content types are resonating, where you align with high-demand categories, and how you will provide a seamless, exceptional experience from discovery to sale.

Then, wherever possible, use AI and automation to scale your efforts.

Now is the time to integrate technology, content, and workflows to engage, delight, and convert customers throughout the holiday season.

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Learn more from SEO and read How to Identify and Optimize Your MVPs (Most Valuable Pages.

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