Interviews, insight & analysis on digital media & marketing

Who were the SEO winners and losers this Easter?

by Becky Cockman, Senior SEO Consultant at Organic

Easter provides an opportunity for retailers both on and offline to pique consumers’ interest in the weeks leading up to the long weekend. It’s no longer just a time for confectionary brands to cash in by stacking shelves in supermarkets with an endless array of Easter Eggs, but also for eCommerce retailers who sell higher ticket holiday-themed items to capture audience attention as well.

So, who won the SEO game this Easter? How did supermarkets, chocolatiers and informational sites fare? Using insight gathered over the Easter period we found there were clear winners and losers, highlighting key trends and findings that eCommerce retailers can build into their plans for next year. Evaluation by Sistrix revealed Amazon took the top spot for purchase intent (‘do’) keywords followed by Cadbury Gifts Direct, and Etsy in third place.

But the analysis isn’t just about the keywords people use when they intend to buy the products (the ‘do’ category, e.g easter eggs to buy online), it also covers informational queries (the ‘know’ category e.g. Easter things to bake and why do we eat chocolate at Easter). For the ‘know’ keywords, the top three were Wikipedia, Amazon and Britannica.

Cadbury Gifts Direct ranked in the top three for the ‘do’ keywords and also ranked highly for the ‘know’ category (coming it at number eight). Likely causes of their variety of high rankings are that alongside the CTAs like ‘shop now’ and ‘grab Easter eggs’ buttons, their Easter landing page also  included colourful visuals, a competition, and links to informative blog posts. This would be a good example to follow if you wanted to try to rank for both types of query. 

It’s also worth noting the absence of supermarkets in the rankings. Contrary to what you may think, based on this data, most big-name stores don’t seem to come out top  in the ‘do’ search rankings. In fact, the majority lurk in the bottom third of Sistrix’s leading domains with Tesco the only exception, coming in at number six. 

So given supermarkets didn’t make the top spots, what websites were coming through? Sistrix’s top 25 websites winning for visibility with ‘do’ keywords included Etsy, notonthehighstreet, John Lewis and two hamper sites. The presence of websites like these indicates Easter has gone beyond eggs, with gifts focusing on the celebration in general. For instance:

  • Etsy featured the likes of bunny wish bracelets, personalised Easter bags and Easter activity craft boxes.
  • notonthehighstreet sold all manner of kits, from hot cross bun wreath baking to personalised Creme Egg cocktails, plus items like bunny-themed children’s outfits.
  • John Lewis stocked everything from Easter decorations, tableware and cards to bunny socks, mugs and books.
  • Funky Hampers had products like ‘The Super Deluxe Chocolate Bouquet’ and a mini chocolate cheeseboard on sale.

And although was lower on Sistrix’s leading domains list, it still placed in the top 25. The company put together luxury Easter gift baskets filled with indulgent goodies like Champagne and meringue kisses. Although chocolate featured in many (truffles, bars and miniature eggs), their offerings didn’t include the traditional idea of an Easter egg.

Despite the above-average high price point (starting at £26 up to a whopping £189), Google saw enough reason to include in its search results for Easter chocolate terms, even without the classic egg element.

Sites like Cadbury, Amazon and Etsy appear in the top 25 for ‘do’ keywords alongside expensive chocolatiers like Thorntons, Hotel Chocolat, Chocolate Trading Co, Green & Black’s, and Lindt. These online retailers sell a broad Easter range, from personalised, luxury and kids’ eggs to deluxe hampers and giant one-kilogram bunnies.

What do these trends suggest? Well, most obviously it’s clear that people have different buying habits on and offline. They go in-store for basic (and cheaper) eggs, where several may be purchased at one time, and shop online for something special at a higher price point. 

Based on the trends we can see from the rankings, going forward, Easter keyword targeting should consider focusing more heavily on high-end products. One of the strategies we use in SEO to help identify opportunities is to analyse what is working and use that to inform the strategy to rank for those keywords. With so many of the top performing sites promoting higher end Easter goodies, it would be a wise move for others to follow their lead in 2023. Mull that over while you work your way through your Easter goodies – if you’ve got any left that is…