20 Nov A guide to Black Friday SEO
It’s never too early to start thinking about Black Friday. As November rolls around, you’ve got your great deals and exclusive discounts sorted. You’re all ready to go!
But is your website prepared? Is your Black Friday SEO on point?
While it used to be an American custom, Black Friday has made its way across the pond to the UK, and it marks the start of one of the most profitable times of the entire year for many retailers. So it really does pay to get it right.
Don’t worry, we’ve got your back. Here’s a complete guide to getting your Black Friday SEO sorted all year round.
Always have a page live
Having a page that specifically targets Black Friday is something you probably already expected us to say. But what we actually recommend is having that page live (and linked to) on your site every day of the year even when it’s not Black Friday. While this page shouldn’t be visible in your main navigation, it should still be linked to from elsewhere, i.e. not an orphaned page.
So, why should you have a page live all year round? It’s all to do with building authority and relevance for the right keywords.
The two most highly searched for terms on Black Friday are – yes, you guessed it – ‘Black Friday’ and ‘Cyber Monday’.
These keywords will be your starting point. Now, they’re going to be incredibly competitive, so you probably aren’t going to rank for these particular ‘head terms’ immediately which is why your page needs to be live all year round and optimised for them as much as possible. Without looking spammy, of course.
How long should I keep my Black Friday page live for?
The simplest answer is, all year round. That is if you want your Black Friday SEO efforts to work as hard as they could.
Now, where it is placed on your website and linked to from, and the content on there will be different at different times of the year but the actual page – with its evergreen URL – should be active all year round.
So, let’s go into more detail on what types of content should be on your page throughout the year.
1. For the majority of the year…
Utilise long-tail keywords
We’ve already talked about Black Friday SEO terms that are probably going to be too competitive for you to rank for, but including long-tail keywords on your main Black Friday page – you know, the one that’s live all year round – will help to grow that page’s relevance for anything and everything to do with BF.
We’ve screenshotted some example long-tail keywords below that are perfect to be used:
As you can see, there is a lot of volume for these Black-Friday-related questions, so make sure you’re throwing your hat into the ring to rank and build authority for these terms.
John Lewis has done a great job with their Black Friday page. We’ve included a screenshot of it below. As you can see, it includes numerous iterations of the target keyword, and also has long-tail keywords that will help this page rank for those questions.
In fact, John Lewis ranks at position 9 for the phrase ‘what are Black Friday sales’. So it definitely works!
Their title tag and meta description is also optimised for ‘Black Friday 2020’ and ‘Black Friday Deals’, the former of which will change every year:
So, for the majority of the year – the only exceptions being the month of Black Friday and the run-up to the big day – your own website’s Black Friday page should be populated with keyword-rich informational content such as this. And as we mentioned above, it should be live, indexable and linked to from elsewhere on your site for 365 days of the year. (Just not in the navigation bar all-year round, remember!)
And just like our good friends, John Lewis, it’s important that you include calls to action and banners to encourage people back into your sales funnel elsewhere in the site. If you have an ‘Outlet’ page or ‘Sales’ page, then remind them that this is the perfect place to get your products for less while they wait for Black Friday to arrive.
2. At the start of November
Black Friday always follows the day after America’s Thanksgiving day, which usually sits at the end of November. So once Hallowe’en is over and done, it’s time to turn your attention back to your dedicated Black Friday page that is already live and has been building relevance and authority all year round.
Now is the time when you should add your Black Friday page into your main navigation bar. While it should have already been linked to from elsewhere on your site, it now needs to sit front and centre of your website and be visible to your customers so they know to come back to you when the day rolls around.
You should also add a little something to your Black Friday page. Keep your long-tail keyword content and add a bright and bold banner above (ideally at the top of the page) that perhaps details your planned discounts and what people should expect to see from your sale. Make it eye-catching and offer people the option to sign up for a reminder newsletter – a great way to scoop people back into your sales funnel.
Take a look below at H&M’s banner as an example. They started a few days before Black Friday with a few teasing deals to pull people in.
Below is what is shown on the Currys PC World page – as you can see they have a ‘Register your interest’ button. Do something similar for your customers and you can send them your offers and discounts when they go live to remind them to come back and shop on the day.
3. When Black Friday arrives
When Black Friday finally arrives – or whenever you want your deals and discounts to go live – it’s time to tweak your page again.
Get rid of your ‘Coming Soon’ or teasing banner, and replace it with your discounted products or categories. But remember to keep your content – those long-tail keyword questions and answers – underneath your offers at the bottom of the page, as this ensures that it keeps its relevance for those Black Friday SEO terms.
Produce seasonal content
Seasonal content doesn’t just apply to the major occasions like Christmas and Easter, it also applies to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Not only does it help with relevance and can be used in line with your social media and email marketing, but it also keeps your brand at the very forefront of people’s mind when those purchasing decisions are being made.
Don’t just think written content; videos, infographics and images are a fantastic way to engage with people either on your website and social media. They’re far more likely to grab people’s attention than a wall of text. Plus they’re also incredibly shareable.
It’s important that you start planning and writing your Black Friday and Cyber Monday seasonal content early so you can have it ready to go in the run-up. Have large ‘evergreen’ guides that sit on your website and build relevance all year round, and then have annual round-up blog posts that cover your deals and discounts for each year (maybe even drop some of these commercial stats back onto your main Black Friday page post-event… It’s just another way to grow that all-important relevance!)
Have a separate page for Cyber Monday
Black Friday and Cyber Monday often go hand-in-hand, but they’re actually two very separate events. And even though a great deal of Black Friday takes place online, there are a lot of exclusive offers that can only be found in-store, whereas Cyber Monday is only online.
If your business plans on doing deals for both days, you’d be much better off creating separate pages for them both. As you can see from the screenshot below, long-tail keywords around Cyber Monday get a great deal of search volume; you don’t want to miss out on all those people!
Follow the same strategy as above for Cyber Monday, let’s recap:
- For the majority of the year (for example, after Cyber Monday to the start of the next November), your page consists of long-tail keyword questions and answers
- At the start of November, that content moves down slightly and a banner with ‘Coming Soon’ or something similar is added
- On the day, your deals go live
- Repeat once the day is over and the deals are done
Black Friday links
Link building is a key part of SEO, and that applies to seasonal pages like these. In order to rank for Black Friday-related terms, you’re going to need to acquire links from other retailers, news publications and websites that show all deals in order to rank organically above your competition.
Black Friday buying guides
Buying guides are easy-to-read and easy-to-digest posts that can shortlist the very best of your Black Friday deals. Go for titles such as ‘Top 10…’ or ‘Black Friday wishlist’, as they are incredibly appealing to users. Don’t go into too much detail; you want people to click on the website or the products rather than getting put off by too much text. Imagery is your friend here so make sure your products are showcased beautifully.
To get included in other people’s guides, join Response Source or scour Twitter to be ready to respond if journalists are asking for suggestions for their Black Friday buying guides. Bloggers and influencers are good places too as they will often put together buying guides, so if you’re a retail client – especially fashion or beauty – then this is somewhere you need to be.
Black Friday is over: Now what?
When your landing page is completely clear of deals and all your products have sold like hot cakes, it may be incredibly tempting to move your page to drafts or delete it entirely. But don’t!
Remember what we talked about earlier; rather than removing your dedicated Black Friday (and Cyber Monday!) pages altogether, keep them live and just remove your ‘Coming Soon’ banners and products. For the vast majority of the year, your Black Friday page should have nothing else on it but your long-tail keyword questions and their answers.
Now, we realise we’ve just thrown an incredible amount of information your way and – especially if you’re new to the online world – setting up your Black Friday SEO properly can be incredibly daunting. But with the right SEO agency by your side, guiding you with the latest knowledge and years of experience, you will be making the most out of Black Friday year after year.