The purpose of the Holidays is to make it simpler to organize recipes so that they can more easily be displayed on the homepage and sidebar.
And since Holidays usually (but not always) have set dates, we can even automatically display them at the same time each year, which saves hours of work updating and reorganizing posts.
Who is this useful for?
This is useful for both new and established bloggers.
New blogs will benefit from organizing their posts into Holidays as they write them, laying a base of content that can be promoted every year.
Established bloggers will benefit from automating a key part of their business - seasonal recipes - which reduces the amount of administrative work you have to do.
Updating content from the previous year is often the best ROI on your time.
Previously ranking content
The simplest way to find what content should be updated is to go into Google Search Console for 11 months ago, and update those posts.
So in October 2022, we're featuring content from October 2021 (Halloween) and updating content from November 2021 (Thanksgiving) to get it ready for display the next month.
Do NOT update posts that are ranking in the top 1-3 positions for their primary keywords, or posts that are currently your top 10 traffic drivers. The risk of losing those rankings far outweigh the potential benefits.
Identifying seasonal content
You can use a number of free or paid tools to identify keywords that trend at a given time of year:
- Google Trends
- Keywords everywhere
- Use the top hashtags on social media to kick off research (but this isn't keyword research!)
In general, we're using the holidays as a way to display recipes using the FSRI block and don't want people navigating to these holiday archives, so we automatically noindex them and not link to them.
Pre existing categories
Many people already have holiday categories for Halloween, Christmas, etc., which we recommend deleting and reorganizing using the Holidays.
In general, you won't rank for these because the keywords are too vague and too competitive, so you don't want to create an indexable category page.
However, if you have pre-existing holiday categories, you should check Google Search Console for traffic going directly to these (expand the timeline to 12 months). You'll also want to check to see if there are backlinks going to these pages.
For 99% of recipe sites, this won't be a concern.
We recommend starting to add Holidays on:
- new recipes moving forward, and
- as part of your regular post update process.
With the Feast Plugin 7.7.0 we can assign posts to holidays without changing the modified date using the new Intelligent Post Edits setting. Enable this before making category or holidays changes.
Maintaining momentum between holidays
Some months (February, April) simply aren't very holiday-centric. In these cases, we can even create a month-specific "holiday" to feature the recipes that do well at that time of year.
Simply dive into your Google Search Console data from that month, 1 year ago, to see which recipes might work well being featured.
Updating seasonal content
Updating your content is important when featuring it, here's some resources on updating content: