Regardless of what line of work you are in, holidays are the perfect time of the year for you to sit tight, relax, and recharge your batteries a bit. However, it is exactly the opposite if you are a blogger or if you are using a blog as a platform to promote your online business and boost the sales of your business. You ask why? Because, during the holiday season, people usually do two things: chill at home and shop.
This means you have an ideal opportunity to promote offers and pitches to your existing followers and customers, as well as expand your audience by introducing a few changes and updates on your blog. If there is anything people look for during the holidays, it’s shopping tips, creative ideas, and great deals, which means you need to start crafting effective content in advance and monetize it. But, we’re a step behind.
Here are 6 ways with which you can update your blog and boost its readership, thus make revenue during the holidays.
1. Come up with Content Ideas in Advance
Now, this fact is hardly a revelation if you’re a blogger since you need to have topics lined up for at least a month before, but in order to do good business during the holidays, you need to either increase or decrease the frequency of your posts. More specifically, you need to stick to much tighter deadlines and schedule your posts, so that they are aligned with specific holiday dates, such as Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, or Christmas, just to name a few. In order to prepare your holiday blogging schedule, start brainstorming and jot down ideas today. Here are some things which work for most bloggers:
- Browse Pinterest for holiday ideas – platforms like Pinterest and Instagram are a great source of inspiration, plus you can make use of hashtags on IG to find what’s relatively popular and trending for each specific holiday.
- Ask your followers what they would like to see on your blog via Instagram Stories – sometimes it’s as simple as asking for user feedback when deciding on what to do next.
- Long posts where you will round up all the best holiday deals, including yours – there is always a place for great deals, but they are scattered all over the place, which means you should craft articles where you list all the best offers out there, besides your gift guide.
- Write holiday-themed posts – regardless of what kind of blog you are running, you can easily work that holiday theme into it. For example, posts like “10 Ideal Gifts for Book Lovers”, or “20 Items to Help You Have the Best Christmas Ever” allow you to get pretty creative and to utilize the holiday shopping season.
Now, when it comes to producing the content itself, you will definitely have your hands full, so it might not be a bad idea to get some help by hiring a freelance writer or one of the cheap essay writing services in order to handle the increased content production volume.
2. Repurpose Your Old Holiday Content
You’ve already covered new content, but what about repurposing your old one? You can make use of those articles, posts, and content in general by polishing it a little bit and infusing it with a fresh new angle. Take your time and analyze your previous posts and see which ones have driven the largest number of followers to your website or which have inspired your audience to share it on social media.
- Repost your older content - the easiest thing to do would be simply re-posting links to your old content on social media, along with new texts and images. Also, since almost every holiday season has its own fad, make sure to update your old hashtags and/or add new ones in order to utilize the power of trends.
- Choose a different format - another effective way of repurposing holiday content would be to gather all of your best holiday articles and turn them into a free eBook or newsletter. Even your regular readers will appreciate this, especially if you arrange the articles into an eye-catching magazine-style holiday guide.
- Update your previous posts - finally, you can refresh old posts by adding new information. For instance, if you have written an epic post about 15 best holiday toys for children last year, go ahead and expand the list to include 15 new ones, or write a sequel of sorts, which will drive people to go back and look up the original article.
3. Increase Your Activity on Pinterest
They say that almost all social media platforms reflect the holiday spirit during the fall and winter months, most apparently on Pinterest. It’s the go-to place for most holiday shoppers when they are looking for creative ideas on anything related to any holiday, and you can make this work for your blog as well:
- Create a holiday-specific pin board – this one is pretty easy to do since there are so many holiday topics. We are talking recipes, cooking, decorations, wrapping presents, DIY gifts, and spending time with your family and friends, which means there are plenty of opportunities for you to create boards around these themes. Also, maximize their popularity by optimizing their titles for relevant keywords. It can be anything from “Delicious holiday desserts” or “Best no bake treats” to “DIY decorations on a budget”.
- Turn it into a group board – this is a great opportunity for you to reach out to other similar-minded people from your niche to contribute. It’s best to keep the group relatively small. As for your followers, you can invite them to contribute as well by organizing a weekly event during which they will share their pins.
- Join other holiday boards – if you are in a number of blog groups, the chances are you will be invited to their holiday boards as well. Join and contribute, as this can expose you to an entirely new audience which might not have heard about your blog before.
4. Promote Limited Offers, Deals, and Events
If you are using your blog to promote your own products, holidays are an ideal occasion for you to throw in a good deal for your audience. For example, you can provide them with a limited offer or a discount if they decide to purchase one of your items in the next 24 hours or that particular week.
If you don’t have any products of your own, you can get in touch with shops and organize offers or discounts. In order to do that, you will need to prepare months before, attend events and conferences and rub shoulders with brand reps and key industry figures. Once the holidays come around, you can ask them for a special discount coupon code for your blog. When it comes to giveaways, you may get a better response if you decide to give away a gift card, which allows your followers to pick a gift for themselves. Again, in order to coordinate with relevant brands during the holiday season, you will need to reach out to them months before and start to develop a relationship with them.
5. Create a Holiday Gift Guide
Admit it or not, holidays are just as much about shopping as they are about spending time with our beloved people. On the bright side, we buy a lot of gifts for others, and in order to do that, we often seek ideas and suggestions online. In order to help your audience with gift ideas, besides ideas we’ve mentioned above, you should put together a holiday gift guide. Remember that most people nowadays do their research online, instead of checking out the stores physically, as it saves time, and allows looking for gifts based on different criteria, such as price, taste, age, or discount.
To maximize the effectiveness of your guides, you should take a look at the analytical data and see who your target audience is. You can cater to all demographic categories of your audience and focus on what might be interesting to them. This is also useful for SEO, so you might, for example, have categories and topics such as:
- Presents for Your Significant Other
- Gifts for Toddlers
- Present for Men
- Presents for Women
And when we are talking about variety, it also means variety in price, since your audience will probably be very diverse when it comes to their budget. Some will spare no expense during the holidays, while others may be on a tight budget, and you will need to include both ends of the spectrum. But before you proceed to turn every stone you can find online in a search for the best products, you need to come up with different price ranges. For example, your price models are less than $50, between $50 and $100, $100 to $150, $150 and $200, and $200 and over. Keep in mind to consider the quality of the product first, because you want to be perceived as an authority resource.
6. Implement a Monetization Strategy
Holidays are a great way for bloggers to monetize all the extra traffic as retailers do it before the end of the year. You may be able to increase your rates and make some extra cash by almost the same way, like advertisers. However, by all means, avoid putting an actual fixed rate on your blog, because you want to remain flexible, depending on the advertiser and pitch. You can also find sources out there suggesting that you should monetize your gift guide as well. If you hired a designer to help you create a magazine-quality guide with a beautiful layout, you may be able to charge your audience for it, but it’s better to keep it free and seek out revenue elsewhere.
If you don’t plan on creating a gift guide: free or paid, you can create gift posts and insert affiliate links to actual physical products. This can keep your content free for everyone and give your readers an option to purchase products by clicking on an affiliate link, for which you will receive commissions. Talking about the affiliate links, make sure to look beyond Amazon. Although they are certainly the world’s biggest online store, there are others, plus you can also look for online shops which are rewarding bloggers with referral fees.
If you decide to implement the tips in this article, you will be able to generate more traffic during the holiday season, and hopefully, boost your revenue through monetization and sales. Resting on your laurels is not really an option, and it would be better to try and grow your following and income during these holiday months. Good luck!