Want to know what not to do this Black Friday from an SEO standpoint? Here are 5 key mistakes that marketers make and the reasons why you shouldn’t do the same this Black Friday:
1. Avoid brand new pages.
I see this almost every year for every ‘holiday’ (in the world of eCommerce, Black Friday can definitely be considered a ‘holiday’). Businesses create a brand-new page for Black Friday every year – for example, URLs for multiple Black Friday pages might look as follows:
This means that search engines have to re-crawl and understand each page every single year and, given the short time frame involved, this doesn’t give the page much time to gain traction. Let’s say, for example, that in 2020 acme.com was featured in a list of best Black Friday deals in the national press – all of these valuable, authority-building backlinks are lost in 2021 and 2022 because, in the eyes of search engines, they are brand new pages. Instead, it would be wise to build a Black Friday URL that is updated each year, building upon and maintaining the success and authority earned from previous years.
2. Ensure you have a purpose-built, unique landing page.
Your Black Friday landing page should be optimised for search terms relating to the topic of Black Friday, in order to pick up on related search traffic.
Pre-pandemic searches for ‘black Friday’ grew year-on-year (see screenshot below).
We don’t just see this increase in external searches, but also on the site’s internal searches too. Just using your existing sale or deals page, even with a new and fancy header image, isn’t going to communicate to users or search engines effectively enough that this is the Black Friday page they’re looking for (said in Obi Wan voice). This is especially paramount when you consider the amount of Black Friday content being published within the eCommerce world.
3. Have your own discount codes page, or ensure discount codes are included on your Black Friday page to reduce bounces.
Users will typically leave the sales funnel to search online for discount codes, and there will be a proportion of users who won’t return for one reason or another. These users mean lost revenue.
4. Launch your page early.
Even if the deals aren’t active yet, you can create great content talking about what a customer can expect to see and include an email sign-up field, promising either early access or a notification of when deals are live. Not only will this help you to capture valuable customer details, but will also mean that the page can be indexed early and begin to gain traction. If you launch your page on the week of Black Friday, it doesn’t give it long to start ranking.
5. Use data.
Look at the keywords that customers were using last Black Friday, and ensure your page is optimised for these terms. You can also check out recent trends if you’re seeing a lot of traffic for pages and search terms with an informational intent. Then, ensure that the products in question are prominently featured in the Black Friday copy in order to capitalise on users working their way through the purchasing funnel who are close to pulling the trigger.
BONUS TIP: Use paid media, including retargeting, to ensure that your Black Friday deals are put in front of users during this consideration and research phase, in order to ensure they don’t miss out on an offer which could turn them from a visitor into a customer.