Analytics & Digital Marketing Tips

Online Holiday Marketing Tips

November 8, 2010           Digital Marketing

As online marketers, we know that all ecommerce products have a unique seasonality. The ebbs and flows of revenue help guide our annual planning. But there is also a season that transcends industry, effecting the entire online channel: The Holiday Season.

Holiday marketing - Don't forget the important things this Christmas Ahh, yes. The Holiday Season…infamous for:

(1) Presenting unique opportunities for  substantial Q4 revenue increases

(2) creeping up on you with no fair warning, and

(3) draining marketers of their creativity (often causing a state of frenzy).

At this point, you can’t change number (2), as the Holiday Season has already started. However, there is still hope for evading number (3). We have scoured through all of the ecommerce trends for the 2010 Holiday season to find our favorite holiday marketing tips to help you out.

Consumer Online shopping trends during Holidays from Google

Start With Holiday Keyword Research

Before you start, take note that holistic online marketing strategies are typically the most effective. To expedite implementation across the board, researching seasonal keywords is essential. Here are some tips for your initial research:

  • Start by researching the past by evaluating last year’s holiday keywords for any behavioral search trends. For example, the keyword modifier “buy” shows up more frequently this time of year.
  • Brainstorm ways that your product adds value to a particular Holiday. If you rent out gazebos, perhaps “celebrating Christmas outside” would be a valuable keyword phrase.
  • Avoid Holiday themed keywords that are not relevant to your customers. Long tail Holiday keywords will provide more value than vague terms like “Christmas tree.”
  • Categorize holiday keywords into silos paying special attention to what Holiday keyword themes could stand alone and what themes should be added to existing pages.

With keyword exploration out of the way, the rest of your online marketing for the holidays should be a breeze.

Seasonal Online Holiday Marketing Tips

Email Strategies for the Holidays

  • Put your best effort into the subject line to draw attention from the hundreds of other emails consumers receive during the holidays. take a look at these top 10 fall email subject lines for inspiration.
  • Start sending now and gradually increase frequency to get your brand in front of your audience before their inboxes are bombarded with promotions.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

  • Develop Holiday themed pages targeted on specific Holiday keywords, that can pull new visitors to your site as well as keep them engaged. Use Holiday keywords in the meta title, meta description, and meta keyword tags. Regarding meta descriptions, try to incorporate a call to action or a value proposition that is specific to the holiday shopper (e.g. “free gift wrapping” and “order by 12/22 to get in time for Christmas”). Keep in mind that these pages are an investment and can be recycled year after year.
  • Add (and emphasize) content that reflects holiday shopper needs to make their lives easier. For example, holiday shoppers tend to search for gift ideas, gift wrapping, and gift certificates. They are also concerned with return policies on gifts purchased, shipping changes, and delivery dates. Creating content around these topics like “Christmas Gift Ideas 2010” or “Christmas Gift Ideas for Her” can help pull visitors in while providing relevant content from the get-go.

Pay Per Click Advertising (PPC)

  • Create new ads with Holiday keywords for meaningful differentiation, to appeal to your customer’s emotional state, and to improve Quality Score (for testing ad variations in the first place).
  • Focus on the stages of the buying cycle in your ads and keywords as consumers change behavior during the Holiday Season. For example, consumers might move through the “evaluation” stage more quickly.
  • Don’t promote prices if you can’t compete Pretty simple. Make sure to scan the Search Engine Results Page of your keywords for any mention of price from your competitors.

Don’t forget, the Holiday Season is not limited to Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years. There are actually 9 Holiday Marketing Opportunities Left in 2010 for you to take advantage of:

  • Veteran’s Day (11/11/10)
  • Thanksgiving (11/25/10)
  • Black Friday (11/26/10)
  • Cyber Monday (11/29/10)
  • First Day of Hanukkah (12/1/10)
  • First Day of Winter (12/21/10)
  • Christmas (12/25/10)
  • Kwanzaa (12/26/10)
  • New Years Eve (12/30/10)

If you find yourself with limited time and/or resources, we are always here to help you look like a Rockstar.



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