Regardless of whether you’re gearing up for the holidays, or are preparing for any other sales boost, it’s essential that your website is ready to experience greater volumes of traffic and purchase intent, especially if you have a new PR campaign on the horizon. With this in mind, on-page optimization for your SEO has never been more important.
While it’s important to emphasize that good SEO is for life, not just for Christmas, the creation of a strong search engine optimization strategy that can be continually revised and improved ahead of busy times in the year can be great for realizing your potential when it comes to leveraging festive conversions.
The Covid-19 pandemic has inadvertently impacted seasonal SEO for many firms, and the widespread push towards digital transformation among businesses in many industries has led to a wildly competitive landscape for many companies.
This means that it quite literally pays to optimize ahead of busy periods and reach new customers before competitors. Whether you’re seeking to promote a Christmas-themed clothing range ahead of the holidays or are simply aiming to boost conversions ahead of Black Friday—analyzing and improving your on-site SEO is essential. Let’s explore how your pages can be optimized in order to ramp up your PR to welcome new customers and those all-important conversions:
Watch your speeds
Many businesses are likely to experience different levels of customer engagement depending on the time of year. Many online stores will have already noticed differences in sales volumes depending on seasons or at certain times of the month–particularly around the days that paydays occur.
However, rises in customer interest can be mitigated by the prospect of slower page loading times as navigation volumes rise. Errors in loading on-page images, malfunctioning forms, or poor navigation can all do significant damage to businesses aiming to maximize their sales potential.
On top of this, search engine crawlers could view your website as too sluggish to position at the top of their respective SERPs, causing you to lose valuable ground over your industry rivals.
To help prevent being penalized by Google’s crawlers, keep an eye out for some on-site factors such as slow loading times, a lack of mobile functionality, broken internal links and URLs, site indexing issues, irrelevant pages, duplicated content, orphaned pages, missing SSL certificates, and canonicals that don’t work anymore.
You should also remain vigilant against any issues that could impact your website’s overall architecture. But by regularly auditing your and inspecting your website usability, you should be capable of avoiding any emerging problems when it comes to your busy festive season.
Always cater to mobile users
In this day and age, the importance of optimizing for mobile users can’t be emphasised enough. Vast quantities of your leads are likely to visit your pages via their smartphones, and failing to cater to their needs amounts to turning your back on masses of conversions.
As we can see from the chart above, a considerable majority of online traffic stems from mobile users, with mobile browsers acting as the dominant vehicle for surfing the internet since 2017.
This means that it’s imperative that your pages and landing pages are always optimised for mobile browsing as a priority, and that you’ve utilised AMP as standard wherever possible.
Look to the past for inspiration
It’s possible to look at your recurring busy periods from the past to gain better insights into what your audience searches for when it comes to purchasing intent.
Platforms like Google Search Console are naturally excellent solutions for gaining greater audience insights. The tool can help users to get search query data from established targets to better understand what they’re searching for at given periods. Likewise, platforms such as Ahrefs are strong solutions when it comes to gaining keyword research insights.
Businesses should also look to cost-effective solutions like Google Trends to better understand when their audience are searching for specific terms to better spot emerging trends.
As a key example, we can see that some search terms are highly season-specific. For instance, a Google Trends search for the term ‘gym’ shows that there are peaks in search volume in early January of each year (although this trend appeared to be impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic in 2021), which indicates that many people aim to join and attend gyms in the new year as part of their resolutions.
This indicates that you may experience better traffic in December and January and that you should tune your PR efforts accordingly to make yourself more visible to leads.
By further narrowing down your research to better understand what your audience is specifically searching for and at what time they make their queries, you can organise your on-page SEO accordingly for higher traffic volumes.
Analyze your keywords
Making sure your keywords are the perfect fit to attract the right traffic is one of the key aspects of your seasonal search engine optimization efforts. Although it would be nice for a one-size-fits-all formula for success in this area, only strong research is going to get you results in this department.
Fortunately, online resources like Lawrence Hitches’ 2023 on-page SEO checklist have shown that there are a number of essential actions that can be taken in conducting accurate keyword research and drawing on insights that can pave the way for on-page SEO success during specific seasons.
One major factor to take into account is that every keyword needs to be backed by enough search volume to ensure that your targeted keywords reach their intended audience. Although creating a bank of relevant industry keywords is certainly a good idea, it won’t amount to much if no customer is searching for your chosen terms.
Once again, Ahrefs can be a good companion in conducting more refined keyword research, but other tools like Google Search Console can be highly useful too.
For example, if you’ve found a keyword that has a search volume of around 10,000 per month, your website will gain around 1% of that search volume if it manages to rank 1st within Google’s search engine results pages. This means that it’s important to aim for high-value, low-competition keywords in order to command more search volume over time.
Getting your on-page SEO can be a difficult and time-consuming task. But by ensuring that your pages are appropriately audited, and your optimization tactics are on-point, you can enjoy more impactful seasonal PR campaigns that are more likely to win over customers and see greater volumes of traffic.