As Christmas approaches, there's a flurry of online activity. People are searching for recipe ideas, gift ideas, and let's face it, ideas on surviving the Holidays too! No matter what your blog's niche, there's no reason why you can't grab a pumpkin-spiced slice of the Holiday traffic too.
Increased traffic is only a small piece of the puzzle. Your blog needs to be ready to receive that traffic. It's time to get organized, showcase your best work, and invite your new visitors to sit down and stay a while. (Confession time: we've done a much better job at getting our Etsy shop ready for holiday traffic. Many of my pointers below are ones that Sarah and I need to take action on too! Let's grow together!)
8 Ways to Make Your Blog Holiday-Ready
- Create Holiday-themed content. No, this doesn't mean your business blog needs to showcase a DIY Christmas craft, but what about a gift guide for entrepreneurs? If your blog is all about writing, you could write a post on keeping your creativity or writing habit going even through the busy Holiday Season. Seriously, there are so many ideas here. No matter your niche, there is something related to Christmas that makes sense. For us, that meant writing on preparing your Etsy shop for the holidays, hosting a giveaway that features women with small businesses, and podcasting about the importance of supporting small businesses this Christmas.
- Create Pinterest-Friendly Post Pictures. Pinterest is a hub of holiday inspiration. Again, this doesn't just apply to DIY and recipe bloggers. Find a lovely Christmas-y stock photo (more photo ideas here) write your fab post on surviving family drama, and Pinterest it up.
- Sell a Product? Highlight it! Whether you sell an e-book, online course, printables, or some other fabulous items, make it very clear to your blog visitors that you have something for sale. Put a link to your products in your header, with a larger featured image in your sidebar. Link to your products in relevant posts. Even if your product isn't usually bought as a gift, for this time of year, frame it in gift-giving terms. What problem does it solve? What personality types will love it the most? (Maybe I'm an oddball, but I'd love to receive an e-book or course that would help my business grow for Christmas!)
- Make your Blog's Focus Clear. If you've been blogging 6 months or more, it's time to do some housekeeping. What do you write about the most? What do you enjoy writing about? It's time to refine your blog's message and tagline so your new visitors immediately understand what you're all about.
- Clearly Define your Categories. Too many categories feels confusing and overwhelming. Too few categories feels just as frustrating for a new visitor. Make each category easy to find and its topic easy to understand.
- Highlight Your Best Work. Create sidebar photo links that highlight your most popular posts. Consider a New? Start Here Page to point new visitors in the right direction and organize your content for them. (Yep, this is on our list to do too!)
- Create an Enticing Email Opt-In. We've talked about this one before, but it bears mentioning again. If you still don't have a fabulous offer that's readily apparent to each new blog visitor, you're missing out. Create an offer today. Put that opt-in box at the top of your site, bottom of each post, and in your sidebar. Don't miss the chance to connect with new readers long-term.
- Update your About Me Page. Are the photos of you and your family 2 years old? It's time for an update! Did you fail to clearly explain what your site is all about and how you can help solve a problem the reader faces? Figure out your unique selling proposition today. (Yep, even if you're an artsy, creative type, you have a unique selling proposition. Figure it out, and, well……….. sell it!)
How will you make your blog a welcoming home for holiday visitors? We're dying to know!
~ Beth Anne