If you own an ecommerce site in Australia, you are most likely aware that there are certain seasons that bring in a sales spike. The holiday season is probably the first thing that comes to your mind. However, there are also other seasons that are worth your attention like Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Most online marketing strategies that want to take advantage of such seasons mainly focus around email marketing and pay-per-click marketing (e.g., AdWords). What is often forgotten is the strategy for organic traffic. With most online retailers focusing more on PPC and email marketing, you can say there’s a blind spot in the market and you can take advantage by formulating an online seasonal keyword marketing strategy for organic SEO.
What Are “Seasonal” Keywords?
As mentioned above, there are certain seasons that an online retailer should pay attention to such as Christmas, Easter, and Wedding season. You can even say that ‘anniversary’ and ‘birthday’ are seasonal keywords. This is very important as getting organic means having a solid foundation of good keywords.
To better illustrate the point, here’s an example:
There are people who are looking for party costumes, so they search for “party costumes for women Melbourne” or something similar. However, when the Halloween season arrives, the same customer will search for “Halloween party costumes for women in Melbourne.” To give you another example, some users search for “gift for dads Melbourne.” When the holiday season comes, they search for “Christmas gifts for dads Melbourne.”
In most cases, there’s a small difference in wording, but it’s a difference that you can’t afford to ignore. This is because, in the eyes of search engines, the two keywords are not the same. In other words, if you search for “party costumes for women,” you’ll have a different set of search engine results compared to when you search for “Halloween party costumes for women.”
This also means that if you have only optimised for “party costumes for women,” when Halloween season comes, you won’t be able to take advantage of the opportunity of the said season.
To take advantage of the opportunity, it’s critical that you have a separate campaign targeting a specific season.
When to Start Implementing Your Seasonal Keywords Strategy
Aside from keywords, this is probably the next most important factor that you need to get right. Because of the sheer amount of data on the Internet, search engines need a bit of time to sort out the bad sites and the good ones. The time needed can vary from one industry to another.
At the very least, you should start implementing your campaign strategy 6 months ahead of the season. This is to ensure that your landing page and SEO efforts get noticed by search engines.
How Do I Find My Seasonal Keywords?
This depends on your niche and budget. There are services that can offer you more details, which allow you to have a better set of keywords to work with. Keep in mind that such kind of service can also get expensive.
If the budget is a bit tight, then you can simply use Google. Use Google Keyword Planner, which is part of Google AdWords.
If you type the keywords “Christmas gifts” in the Google Keyword Planner, it will then give you keyword variations like “Christmas gifts for dad,” “Christmas gifts for mother,” etc.
The information will also include the number of searches for a specific keyword, which is a good indicator if a specific keyword is worth targeting. The tool will also include the total number of searches on a monthly period.
How to Maximise Your Visibility
Now that you have a good set of seasonal keywords, the next step is maximising the benefits you can get.
- Have a specialised landing page – Search engines love it if you go into specifics. Thus, a page about Halloween party costumes will rank higher compared to a page about party costumes in general when the Halloween season arrives.
- Leverage through social media – You can further maximise the landing page by creating an interesting and shareable content that links to your landing page itself. Good content topics usually revolve around “Top X Christmas Gifts for X,” “Top X Scariest Children Costumes” or something similar. This type of content is easily shared and clicked on social media platforms.
- Ads – If you really want to get serious, you can then spend on ads so people will know that you have new content. If you already have an email list, then you can simply do an email blast to notify your costumers without having to spend a lot of money.
What to Do with the Landing Page Once the Season is Over
Basically, you have three options: take down the page, do a re-direct, or leave it as it is.
Taking down the page is the least productive thing you can do. So, your best option is to either do a re-direct or leave it as it is. Each has its pros and cons.
If you do a re-direct, you can still get the benefits of sending traffic to related pages or products. The traffic may not be as high compared to the peak of the specific season, but traffic is traffic. The downside with this option is that the search engine ranking power of that page will most likely take a hit.
The other option is to leave it as it is. The upside of this option is that the ranking power of the page won’t get a hit and it may even get more powerful because it’s already aged. So, when the season comes again next year, you can expect higher rankings and more traffic. On the downside, until the next year’s season arrives, there’s little benefit you can get from the landing page.
Ecommerce is a tough market and choosing to take the extra mile is what separates the fluff from the meat. If the retailers are focusing on Christmas season alone, go further by also focusing on other seasons like Valentine’s Day and Easter. If online retailers are doing PPC and email marketing, you can go further by having a campaign which focuses on seasonal keywords.