How to Avoid the Holiday Slump: Fighting the Drop in Traffic

Ahhh. The holidays.  Parties, presents, travel, snow, a change in winter attire.  Also, travel, parties, work overload, families, holiday shopping, and everything else that takes away from our time online.

 

I don't know about you– but I always find a huge drop in traffic around the holidays.  It's a bit depressing.  Logically, I understand that people are more busy, are spending less time online in general, and are spending less time on blogs.  HELL– *I'M* spending less time online and less time on blogs!

 

I took this opportunity to chat up some of my favorite bloggers– who have been around!  These are all ladies who I love for not only having excellent sites, but for the longevity in fashion blogging.  They've seen a few holiday seasons come & go, and I trust their expertise on dealing with holiday traffic slumps and the blogging blues!

 

From Sarah of Style It:

I believe that everyone experiences a traffic drop during the holidays. It's hard to not take it to heart – I know many bloggers do, especially those who are just starting out – but the best thing that you can do to avoid a big dip is to keep producing great content consistently. If your readers know to come to you for a certain post or feature on a specific day of the week, don't let it fall off just because it's a holiday. After all, everyone needs something to read when too much family time becomes awkward ;).

From Julia of Fashion Pulse Daily:

 There is definitely a drop in traffic on actual holidays, and sometimes the day before, as I think a lot of readers tend to come to the site when they are at work.  I've just learned to accept it and that's the way things go; I'm busy too around these times of year, and so I think, if people are opening the newsletter or heading to the site to read, what would they like to see when there's so much extra buzz going on? Sometimes I just post a “Happy __” for the holiday, or take the time to post a thank you for the continued support of the readership. Holidays are meant to be a break from the usual routine, so I think people understand, and expect, that bloggers need that break too, and if you decide not to post content on a holiday, people will empathize, and better yet, probably not notice! Just remember that it's not personal and get back on the horse by having some great content queued and ready to go for when everyone is back to their regular schedules. You can also use this time productively, to do some analysis; perhaps look at your stats more closely, and get to know your readers, demographically, even better so that you can cater content to them more succinctly in the future.

From Grechen of Grechen's Closet:

Generally, because I am more shopping focused, I don't see very big decline in traffic during holiday season; in fact, I do quite well from Thanksgiving on.  I do notice a decrease in engagement with my readers though: comments are WAY down and I don't get as many emails.  That's what I miss the most – the interaction & comments – but those come in cycles, just like traffic.  I try to ask more questions, have more fun during “down” times, but people are focused on other things than reading & commenting on blogs right now.  And that's okay. Use this time to take a step back, forget about traffic and remind yourself what's important and why you started blogging in the first place.

From Mallory at Miss Malaprop (whose candor I love in this!):

Honestly I don't worry too much about it. Sometimes if I go on vacation while the rest of the world is not, I might pre-schedule extra posts, or look for some guest bloggers, but during the holidays I usually just let myself take the days off if I feel like it. As they say... on your deathbed, are you going to look back on your life and say, “Gee, I wish I'd worked more?”

How do you handle the drop in traffic and engagement during the holidays? Do you use it as a chance to give yourself a break or do you work harder than ever to keep people coming back for more?

 

Image by Mukumbura.

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20 Responses

  1. MJ

    So very true! I haven’t noticed a big dip just yet, but I’m expecting it and that’s okay! I also don’t stress about posting all the time either. This is usually the time I take to reassess my blog over the past year, get my goals for the new year together, and relax before I hit the ground running in January (which is when the numbers seem to be higher than usual anyways!)

    Reply
  2. lisa

    I always notice a slight dip in traffic around the holidays. But then again, it only occurs over a couple of weeks, and honestly, it’s much more important for me to focus on time spent with loved ones and relaxing than stewing over wonky Google Analytics numbers.

    Reply
  3. PurplesPrettier

    I definitely noticed a drop in readership around Thanksgiving, so I used the vacation time to queue enough content to get ME through the holiday season! Have not had to write another post since… and there was a huge uptick on the Monday after the holiday, since everyone was catching up on the blogs they missed over the weekend. I suggest having something fabulous lined up for when your readers get back to their desks.

    Reply
  4. Jessie in Fashion Limbo

    I guess the key is to not let it affect you too much, if you do experience the dip. I use and abuse scheduled posts for this time of the year as it’s pretty hectic. Then again, last year I was happily surprised when i did get plenty of visits and comments while all I was expecting was dead silence 😉

    Reply
  5. Emmy

    I am the same as Marion above. I’m a failry new blogger, and have never really thought about this. Good to have the heads up:)

    Reply
  6. Heather Fonseca

    I’m actually planning a bit of a blog-cation around Christmas, so I’m hoping traffic is off anyway! So far my numbers have been pretty consistent. This is my first Christmas season with the blog and I’m interested in seeing how the holidays affect my blog, especially after reading this post.

    Reply
  7. ShoeFoo

    I’d been trying to figure out some posts to line up while I’m offline for Christmas – and getting a tad stressed about fitting it in with all the other prep for the holidays. But having read the wise comments above I’m just going to chill about it and have a blog-cation like Heather. Thanks for the de-stressing, everyone!

    Reply
  8. Elodie

    I don’t know if it’s because of my extensive gift guide or not, but I have yet to experience this drop in traffic. I’m ready for it, and to be faire people have less time to be in front of their laptop at that time of the year, me included. I probably won’t even check my stats once I’m back home.

    -Elodie
    http://www.elle-yeah.com

    Reply
  9. Joy

    Yeah I’m slumping a little too but it’s because I don’t really have the time to blog as much with my exams and all.

    Reply
  10. Diana

    I just expect and accept the drop through new year’s. Sometimes I run fun stuff – more youtube posts, picture only posts, etc. but for the most part I just assume to see way more interest in January when people are staying in from the cold and reading more anyway.

    Reply
  11. ChicLittlePoorGirl

    It’s so comforting to read this post and everyone’s comments. I sometimes feel the urge to fight the holiday lull – but it’s nice to hear other bloggers talking about taking a break as well!

    Reply
  12. style-delights

    I am not able to log into IFB to post any link to LALM /blogpost..Is it just me or or anybody else facing the same problem..(elgg error message)

    Reply
  13. Aline C

    I haven’t had a big drop in views, but it’s down a little. I completely understand though and haven’t taken it to heart. Traffic usually picks up a couple of days after major holiday days. Like on the 26th through the 30th and after january 2. Because people are on holiday, and they’re usually done with all the crazy and are taking their time to relax so they have time to look around the blogosphere. 🙂

    Reply
  14. Salty Sticks

    I’m going to clear this up for you guys because a lot of you are blind to what is really going on. The REAL REASON YOUR TRAFFIC DROPS is because Google pushes the big companies who have the funds to rank higher.

    The holiday season is the biggest shopping season of the year. Most of the annual income is made during this time. If you pay attention to deeper statistics such as specific keyword tracking you will notice something funny going on. You can rank at the #1-5 spot for a specific keyword all year-round, but as soon as the holidays come, you are nowhere to be seen, you will drop to #130-170 overnight.

    What’s really happening is that the big companies pay Google a large sum of money to outrank the smaller blogs/websites during this time. As soon as the holidays are over, everything slowly goes back to normal.

    Your traffic drops because there is money to be made, and you’re just a little fish.

    Reply
  15. Mysterious Muse

    So glad to know it is not just me. I figured it had something to do with people spending more time on online shopping. It is interesting starting a blog and learning so much I never would have thought about from the statistics. 🙂

    Reply