It’s that time of year again. While everyday people are excited for traditional festivities, advertisers are doing a facepalm to figure out how to put their product in front of their target consumers. After some research on holiday tips and tricks, I came up with the following takeaways for paid search, mobile, display, social and SEO:
- Customized Messaging. Millennials didn’t have to adapt to technology, so they want their consumer data to be used so messaging is hyper-personalized. Make sure that content is relevant and that the tone is appropriate for your target audience.
- Keep it Consistent. Call out holiday promotions in your ad copy by keeping it short, sweet, and consistent. With all of the advertising clutter during the holidays, users want to get the information they need quickly and easily. At the same time, they need to trust the source, so it’s important to ensure that the landing pages reflect the same messaging from your text ads.
- Holiday Keywords. Other advertisers have seen a slight bump in traffic with holiday-related terms, so why not give it a go?
- Add Negatives. With increased volume comes a lot of irrelevant traffic. Stay on top of unwanted clicks by routinely evaluating SQRs and adding negative keywords where appropriate.
- Build Various Extensions. By creating extensions, you can easily take advantage of the extra real estate on the SERP. Not only will your ads be larger, but you can utilize extensions to highlight product benefits and features, promotions, ratings and more.
- RLSA Campaigns. Implement remarketing lists so you can customize your ads to people who have already visited your site and adjust your bids accordingly. Recapture their attention and boost your conversion volume.
- Have a Mobile-Friendly Page. In 2014, almost 25% of holiday shoppers used a smartphone to purchase a holiday gift and 25% of all US retail sales were influenced by mobile. It is imperative to have clean, concise pages that will make shopping a breeze for the mobile consumer. Keep in mind that initial impressions have a huge impact on how long someone will stay on your site, so make sure the content above-the-fold is appealing to your users.
- Make Promotions Easily Accessible. If you’re offering coupons and other discounts this holiday season, make it easy for the user to locate the different specials and pull them up on their smartphone.
- Utilize Different Settings. Think like your customers; if they’re more likely to call your business or look for your location, implement call and location extensions.
- Deliver Promotional Messaging. Studies show that display and social media will be the avenues shoppers take to look for discounts. Search engines are least effective at 3x less than display.
- Don’t Rely Entirely on the Automated Processes. Stay on top of your creative rotations, optimizations and targeting to keep your programmatic fresh and relevant.
- Ensure Cross-Device Engagement. There should be continuity in engagement between mobile, tablet and desktop as well as a framework in place to measure how that engagement drives action on each device.
- Implement Native Advertising. Make your ads blend smoothly into the flow of content which can yield a better customer experience and more engagement. However, research suggests that the more transparent you are in your advertising efforts, the more trust you will instill, so be careful not to make your ads “too native.”
- Target Mobile. As mentioned earlier, a quarter of Americans are using their mobile devices to make purchases this holiday season. Improve your social efforts to beat out the competition.
- Optimize for Conversions. Prioritize conversions rather than clicks so that you’re spending on the most qualified traffic. Then you don’t have to worry about click-happy users who don’t end up making a purchase.
- Create Lookalike Audiences. Target customers who have made purchases or highest revenue customers (if you have a large base to choose from).
- Leverage Organic. Prices will go up, so include compelling offers to your community, something that will encourage them to share at less cost to you.
- Utilize Pinterest and Other Shopping Platforms. More than ever, consumers are discovering and sharing products they love in the social space. Take advantage of the increased purchase intent within Pinterest and other channels.
- Get Site Updated to Https. Google uses this as a ranking factor, so by converting your site to https, you will have a better overall domain authority and query rankings, not to mention you’ll foster more trust with visitors who prefer secure sites.
- Ensure Your Site Has a Responsive Design. Google has a mobile ranking algorithm they use for determining how well a site will display on mobile devices.
- Have the Appropriate Schema Markup: It’s important to have the appropriate Schema markup for all product information. Additional metadata allows for better indexation and can help display reviews, pricing, etc. within the organic search results page.
- Mobile App Indexation. Include the appropriate markup within your app for indexing by Google.
Hopefully these tips and tricks will guide you towards a successful holiday season in the digital marketplace!