The holidays are a great time for bloggers to increase their income. Brands want more promotions for their products, and blogs are a great platform for exposure. One way that you can be sure you increase your income during the remaining months of the year is by publishing holiday gift guides.
How to Boost your Blog Income this Holiday Season with Gift Guides
If you haven’t put together a holiday gift guide before, you may be a little confused about where to start. Don’t worry, I love doing gift guides and have put them together for three different years since I started blogging. I actually didn’t do one on my parenting blog last year, and my usual holiday income suffered.
What is a holiday gift guide?
A holiday gift guide is a post or page on your blog that suggests gift ideas. You can include things you, your spouse, or your children want for Christmas. Including things you already own is a good idea too. Once the “top toy” lists start coming out, you can add those into your holiday gift guides.
Even if you don’t do a parenting blog like I do, you can still create a gift guide. I’ll give you a few more examples, just to get you going.
- Cooking/Food Blogs – Gift guides on cookware and kitchen gadgets for newlyweds, new chefs, or kids interested in helping in the kitchen
- Fitness Blogs – Gift guides on the latest fitness tech, best exercise clothing options for men and women, or ideas for those that want to get more active
- Travel Blogs – Gift guides for the best luggage items, best backpacks for traveling, or the best cameras to take on a trip
These gift guides are beneficial to you and your readers. You now have content to publish for your readers to look through. Your readers can make their entire holiday gift shopping list from your recommendations. Plus they can earn you money too! Read on to find out more about that…
How to Organize a Gift Guide
Organizing a gift guide can be done in a few different ways. I will talk about three different displays here, but know that these aren’t the only ways you can do it. Find something that will work for you, your blog, and your readers.
Option #1: My personal favorite is to have a single page dedicated to the entire gift guide. This page is titled “XXXX Holiday Gift Guide.” The XXXX’s would be replaced with the current year.
There would then be some text on this page about the gift guide, with links to the subpages. The subpages would have the different gift ideas broken down by categories. For example, since my main niche is parenting, I had separate pages for babies, toddlers, boys, and girls. One year, I even threw in extra pages for men, women, and the home.
If you will be doing full product reviews for the items you plan to include in your gift guide, do those as normal blog posts. Then, link to the review on the subpage where it fits. So, my babies page had items like baby toys, clothing, and gear. The toddler page had puzzles, dolls, and other fun gift ideas.
Option #2: This is a better idea if you aren’t doing reviews for each item, or want something simpler. Have your subpages simply be a list or table of items with their photos and links to purchase.
Option #3: Create “Top 10” list-style posts for your holiday gift guide. You can still create the main page that links out to your blog posts. For example, “Top 10 Dolls for Christmas 2016” or “Top 10 Pet Bowls for Christmas 2016”.
How to Boost your Income with Holiday Gift Guides
This is where it gets good! It’s great that you can recommend your favorite products to others, but how do you cash in on your holiday gift guides?
- Use affiliate links. Your readers will click through to purchase the item, and you will earn a commission. Make your links look attractive with the Pretty Link WordPress plugin.
- Charge brands for gift guide inclusion. If a brand related to your niche wants their products placed in your gift guides, you don’t have to put them in for free! Lots of bloggers start at $25 for gift guide inclusion, which includes a small blurb and links to the product. You can charge more for a full page feature, or if they want exclusivity (to be the only product in a certain category).
When to Start your Gift Guides
The sooner, the better! People start shopping online for the holidays around October. I usually begin planning my holiday gift guides in August and September, getting the first posts ready to go live on October 1st. I then set a goal to stop publishing gift guide posts at the end of November. You may always have a straggler or two though!
Holiday gift guides don’t just work for Christmas. You could do them for other holidays such as Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. Back to School season is great for guides too! Basically, any time people would be shopping online for gifts.
Do you create holiday gift guides for your blog?
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