John Lewis' Christmas Ads - The Ongoing Lost SEO Opportunities
Please note I've broken some of the hyperlinks in the article below.
R .e. John Lewis Christmas ads - for some reason Christmas ads seem to be a cultural event in the cultural wasteland of the UK . It appears that one major retailer may be missing a trick from my perspective (one with SEO blinkers on).
The archived copy of the John Lewis 2021 email newsletter announcing their Xmas ad (https://emailtuna.com/johnlewis.com/4361904) linked to an "evergreen" page on the John Lewis site for their Xmas ads (https://www.johnlewis .com/content/christmas-advert) where the Youtube ad (https://www.youtube .com/watch?v=ZTttgc0DPA4) was embeded.
The above URL on Youtube has backlinks from 164 linking websites (90% dofollow) according to Ahrefs with links from quality websites like https://www.theguardian.com/music/2021/nov/30/bree-runway-holly-humberstone-and-lola-young-nominated-for-brits-rising-star-award .
The "evergreen page" (https://www.johnlewis. com/content/christmas-advert) has 547 linking websites (of which are 83% dofollow) according to Ahrefs at time of writing (which includes links for their 2022 ad campaign).
From a SEO point of view it would make sense to premiere the ad with the video hosted natively on the johnlewis.com domain so that when people share the video at the time of the "premiere" they have no choice but to share the website and not the Youtube URL (with the ad being added to Youtube at a later date) . You could have a snippet of the ad on Youtube at the time of the premiere which links back to the John Lewis website in the description / comments to bring traffic.
The purpose of the above strategy is bring traffic to their website where people might continue to browse / bookmark / purchase items - not send traffic to Youtube. It's not rocket (or satellite) science!
The opposing view might be that having this content on Youtube only might maximise the network effect with easy sharing where it can go viral etc.
This strategy could have built another 160+ links to johnlewis .com from quality websites like theguardian.com for their 2021 campaign alone.
As David Iwanow (Head of Search @ Reckitt) pointed out on Linkedin in November 2023, there is another fragmentation to consider... "some publishers put the clip on their own YouTube pages": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cyuqy4Eb_I4 .