Saturday, November 30, 2013

Organic SEO: Five Tips for a Successful Cyber Monday and Beyond

Thanksgiving 2013 has come and gone, so has Black Friday, and the official/unofficial holiday shopping season is off to an uproarious start. If you were wise enough to stay home on Friday, you happily missed the crowds, the fights, and the shootings! At the Organic SEO Blog, we can't help but wonder, "What's the point?" After all, many news outlets are reporting that Black Friday deals may not be all they're cracked up to be. The Wall Street Journal's blog, Speakeasy, notes:

"If you could pick only one month a year to shop, it would be December. Regardless of whether the economy is humming or slumping, retailers drop prices in December to either pad their bottom lines or try to save their years. This will be especially true this year because Thanksgiving is late in the month, leaving fewer shopping days between Black Friday and Christmas. So you’ll find lots of good deals if you wait until December to do your shopping."

In the same post, Speakeasy also notes the surging popularity of Cyber Monday:

"Cyber Monday sales once paled in comparison to Black Friday sales, but they’ve gotten much better in recent years. For that reason, this year it is easier than ever to make the case that you can save a lot by shopping on Cyber Monday."

For this reason, and more, the Organic SEO blog advocates Cyber Monday shopping for the best experience and deals. 

Now, so far we've been exploring the shopper's perspective. But what about the sellers?  Cyber Monday is a crucially important day for website owners, especially small website owners. For many website owners, a tremendous shopping day like Cyber Monday can often mean the difference between turning a profit or not. Unfortunately, the competition is truly remarkable. Millions of websites vie for the attention of Cyber Monday shoppers.

So how can you ensure that your website will stand out in your niche industry? Organic SEO, of course! The natural website optimization strategies we've advocated on this blog can catapult your website to the top of your industry. With the focus on sales, now is a good time to pay special attention to the following SEO strategies:

1. Perform a Website Audit

Now is a great time to perform a website audit to make sure your website is easily crawled by the major search engines and that your website design is user-friendly. You want to make sure you have no broken links or other problems that might disrupt a browser's experience. Our sponsor, Stepmans PC, offers a website audit service designed with organic SEO in mind.

2. Create a Unique Cyber Monday Landing Page

Obviously, this advice is not specific to Cyber Monday. If you would like to promote a specific product or service, make sure you offer a unique landing page optimized with appropriate keywords. If you are promoting a Cyber Monday deal, for example, you'll want to make sure you use that phrase on the page's title tag as well as on the page itself.

3. Increase Your Speed

A website audit can tell you if you're website is performing at optimal speed. You want to make sure that users can navigate from page-to-page quickly without any lag time. Remember, if a browse is forced to wait on your site, he/she might just as well open another tab, and forget all about your site!

4. Perform a Language Audit

We're writers here at the Organic SEO blog, so we're focused on language, but as a website owner hoping to attract business, you should be too. Language mistakes can trick the search engines, and lead browsers astray. The most profitable websites only display the best, error-free language. A website cannot be fully optimized if the language is not crystal-clear and error-free. A good SEO specialist should employ one or several copywriters who can perform this sort of work for your site.

5. Monitor Your Performance and Analyze Your Competitors

The only way to truly improve your website's performance is to monitor its day-to-day success and compare that success to your competitors. A one-day sale like Cyber Monday offers the unique opportunity to analyze your website's performance on a day when shoppers are intently browsing for products and services. If your competitors succeed and you don't succeed--well, that might mean that you need to tweak your approach to better suit your potential customers.