Phew; the holidays are almost over! For businesses and marketing agencies alike, we’ve spent months preparing for the holiday shopping season. From site optimizations – to take on an influx of shoppers – to running campaigns and promotions featuring seasonal sales, Q4 is always the busiest time of year.
Our best piece (or slice) of advice: don’t take on the holidays alone! What we mean is, the best way to tackle Q4 – to maximize returns and conversions – is to consult a digital agency to help build your holiday marketing strategy. When all those seasonal preparations start to pile up, it’s important to have support from experts to help things run a bit more smoothly.
Take baking a cake, for example. When it comes to stacking all the tiers, even the most experienced bakers need a little extra support to keep their masterpiece from wobbling. Without a proper supporting structure from dowel rods or a cake stand, those spongy layers can easily topple – all that elbow grease and delicious frosting wasted!
Think of each step of your brand’s holiday marketing strategy like a layer of cake. Your base layer is search engine optimization (SEO), the second tier is seasonal inventory planning, the third is holiday content, then seasonal sales and social campaigns, and so on. Layer after layer, you begin to build on your holiday marketing strategy. But for your Q4 strategy to withstand the weight of the holiday season – and avoid disaster – it’s going to need some support from the experts.
At CAKE, we know how to build a sturdy holiday marketing strategy. Directly from our professionals, here are some of the ways we support our clients during the holidays.
Search Engine Optimization
We here at CAKE believe that one of the most important factors to boosting a brand’s holiday sales is SEO. To develop an SEO strategy that will perform during the most competitive time of the year, we start by analyzing your efforts from the previous year; what worked, what didn’t work, and what can be improved. We use this as the basis for developing your brand’s holiday marketing strategy.
From there, we conduct extensive research on purposeful holiday keywords that will align with your brand’s content, as well as boost your rankings. Then we begin optimizing your site’s pages by highlighting some of your best-selling holiday products or services.
Our team also checks for technical audits, like 404 errors, loading speed, and making simplifications to the checkout process to make sure your site is prepared to take on the holiday traffic. Here are some of the other services our SEO team offers that support brands during the holiday season:
- Re-Merchandising – Editing products and highlighting seasonal ones at the top of the page.
- Editing SEO tags – Optimizing the title tags, meta descriptions, and H1 tags on seasonal and holiday products or pages.
- Creating Product Pages for Holiday Shoppers - To make a brand’s holiday eCommerce strategy as SEO-friendly as possible, we aim to get landing pages (like holiday gift guides or new seasonal category pages) up early. Doing this allows users enough time to search and discover your brand, products, and pages before the holiday sales.
- Blog Articles and Gift Guides – SEO works closely with the content team to write holiday-themed blogs that correlate with a brand’s seasonal products or services.
- Refresh and Reposition Evergreen Content - Take previously written blogs and revise them for the new year with new trends and products.
- Craft an “Out-of-Stock” Plan – Rather than lose out on conversions due to out-of-stock products, our CAKE team suggests providing recommendations for similar products. This strategy encourages customers to stay within a site to browse the alternatives, increasing the chances of making a sale even if their desired product is no longer available.
Content is all about what's trending, and – during Q4 – there’s no trendier topic than the holidays! To support our client’s holiday marketing strategies, our team at CAKE ensures every brand’s content is on-trend during the most wonderful time of year.
From our experience, nothing gets customers excited for the holiday shopping season, and sales like content with sentiments such as warm wishes, seasons greetings, or holiday puns and play-on-words. From ad copy featuring seasonal sales with warm, holiday jargon to gift guides and product pages highlighting the season’s bestsellers, our team works creatively to generate unique holiday-infused content.
Our team goes the extra mile to support our clients by creating blogs that can help guide brands through the holiday season. From “How to Create A Holiday Gift Guide” to “How to Make Your Holiday Marketing Inclusive to Maximize Reach,” our blogs provide users and clients alike with content that supports their every business need. From our experts at CAKE, we provide detailed guides and how-tos (featuring our own creative ideas) on a variety of topics to help our clients develop a strong holiday marketing strategy that will maximize returns and conversions.
We encourage our clients to use CAKE content as a guide during the holiday season to help increase sales, develop sales and promo guides, optimize their site and checkout process, prepare for seasonal inventory planning, and more!
Our content team also works closely with SEO during the holidays to create content that targets a brand’s audiences. From retargeting to building brand awareness to reaching new audiences, the efforts of both content and SEO strive to generate the most leads and conversions for brands during the holiday season.
Here at CAKE, we pride ourselves on our keen social media expertise. Our team certainly knows their way around Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, you name it! During the holidays, we are especially focused on social media platforms to reach customers, increase brand awareness, and promote all those irresistible sales.
One way we leverage social media to support our clients during the holiday season is through the creation of fun, creative, and engaging giveaways. It goes without saying that shoppers jump at the opportunity to earn something for “free.” This is especially true during a time of year where shoppers are burning a hole in their wallets on all those holiday gifts.
We find that seasonal giveaways are a very successful way to earn customer loyalty and increase brand awareness among new and seasoned users. They are also an ideal way to create user engagement, gain impressions and followers, as well as generate a positive brand image.
Our team also provides support on the social media end of digital marketing through the use of Facebook and Instagram stories. We leverage this “temporary content” to incorporate holiday themes and promote sales. Stories also allow your brand to have a little creative and festive moment, which goes a long way among users who are excited for the holidays!
In the past, we have used social media to support our clients through influencer campaigns to promote bundles or seasonal products. We have found that this marketing technique increases a brand’s reach, driving new purchases and expanding the target audience.
The CAKE team has also developed a “12 Days of Christmas” campaign for clients, where each day a new 24-hour limited promotion or special offer is shared (free shipping, free gift, 50% off, etc.). While our creative ideas are endless, we have seen how our social team has boosted sales and brand loyalty for our clients during the holidays time and time again.
Paid search is equally important to provide seamless support for clients during the holidays. For starters, we make sure to have longer promotional run times during this highly competitive time of year. It’s important to make customers aware of a sale ahead of time. This allows for promos to achieve their full value and reach, giving users enough time to find and become aware of a sale prior to it occurring.
For example, during Black Friday and Cyber Monday, we ensure that promos are live at least a week prior to this long weekend, knowing that customers may not be active on social channels during the holidays.
Our paid search team also focuses on deeper discounts to remain competitive in the holiday shopping marketplace. For instance, if client X is offering a 10% discount and their competitor is offering 15% off, customers are more likely to choose the latter brand. To ensure our clients are chosen above competitors, our team works diligently to anticipate a profitable and competitive sale.
Along with this, our paid team also covers on-site support during the holidays. For example, we always encourage countdown banners (counting down to either the start or end of a sale) within site landing pages. This generates a lot of urgency amongst site visitors and shoppers to anticipate or take advantage of a holiday sale, which drives purchases.
We also encourage our clients to prioritize top-of-funnel campaigns during the holiday season. This is a great way to increase brand awareness and lead generation to shoppers in the early stages of the buyer’s journey. We find this tactic helps to grow audiences during the holidays, and move browsing shoppers through the buyer’s journey.
Choose CAKE for Support This Holiday Season
At CakeCommerce, our client’s happiness and success are our top priorities. We know that the holidays are a challenging time between your personal endeavors and business activity. Allow us to offer a hand! Our team provides unmatched support for clients during the holiday season from content marketing to social media strategy and more.
To learn more about our services, contact our team.