This is the second installment in a tutorial series that breaks down everything retailers need to do for a successful 2019 holiday shopping season. 

In our experience helping hundreds of retailers get holiday-ready, the best present you can give your shoppers is the ability to easily find the perfect gift for everyone on their list — in no time — and a little something for themselves, too. 

In John Strain's previous article on the first steps to holiday readiness, he discussed how to create impactful holiday campaigns and promotions. Now let’s take it one step further to show how to launch holiday-specific content pages for your shoppers. These pages surface curated and personalized gifts, taking the endless scroll out of holiday shopping. 

Check out the below tips to learn how to:

  • Launch holiday pages easily 
  • Create holiday gift guides 
  • Improve search engine optimization (SEO)
  • Understand search intent

1. Develop engaging holiday pages in a few clicks

Your marketers and merchandisers can create, edit, and manage holiday content pages without knowing code or getting IT involved. Drag and drop tools like Commerce Cloud Page Designer make this possible because developers pull your site’s existing framework and translates design and business requirements into reusable components.

Your team can stay nimble – even at the height of the season — and adjust pages on the fly: 

  • Design, schedule, and publish holiday content pages like gift guides and stocking stuffer must-haves.
  • Drag and drop content with a visual editor to make content and layout changes easily.
  • Build new content pages with reusable components from other pages without having to design from scratch.
  • Preview changes across any device type, persona, schedule, or locale, and make adjustments in real time. 

2. Launch holiday gift guides ahead of time

Within your holiday shopping pages, you can group gifts and tailor content based on shopper preferences to showcase the most relevant product sets that drive sales. One of the most important kinds is a gift guide, critical to every holiday strategy. 

Organize gift guides by recipient, category, and price point and include an easy-to-find add-to-cart button that sticks to the top of the page. Make sure you’re using popular gift-related keywords like “gifting,” “gift guide,” “holiday gifts,” and “stocking stuffers” throughout your page to rank for SEO. 

Then, launch sneak peek or “coming soon” pages in September to start ranking early, generate excitement, and help shoppers stay ahead of the game in their gift planning. 


3. Polish your holiday SEO strategy 

In addition to including popular gifting keywords on your holiday shopping pages, take these steps to make your SEO shine all season long:

  • Ensure overlap between existing metadata and holiday queries.
  • Test your top 50 site search terms from last year’s holiday season to see if results were optimized.
  • Account for new products that you will have to add to this year’s search strategy.

4. Learn how search intent differs by device

A holiday shopper on a desktop may exhibit different buying signals than one on mobile. It’s important to recognize the differences in search intent by device when finalizing your SEO strategy. Success is in the marriage of keywords and intent. 

The good news is that almost all search engines offer auto-suggest capabilities that allow shoppers to refine their search keywords. You can gain deeper insight into keyword trends and search intent by device with open tools like Google Trends and AnswerThePublic to deliver more personalized and relevant brand experiences.


What’s next

You’ll find these and even more tips in our 2019 Holiday Readiness Guide, full of the strategies and technologies retailers should put in place now for a successful holiday season. 

Visit the Holiday Readiness Headquarters for monthly to-do’s and learning resources that will get your marketing, commerce, service, and IT teams holiday-ready.