May 2012

On Site Content for Ecommerce SEO

We’ve discussed the importance of on site content in previous blog postings, and I’ll get into some more in this post. Along with external links, social media, and site traffic stats, on site content is one of the key factors in a successful SEO campaign. When we say “on site content” we mean specifically the written content on the homepage as well as category pages.

Written content is critical because Google values it much higher than it ever did previously so it’s important to have proper written content, especially on ecommerce sites which are notorious for being light on written content. Ever since the Panda update in early 2011, written content has become critically important on site, as well as in off-site link opportunities. In order to get the proper recognition and authority from Google, you should have unique relevant content on your homepage, and all category and sub-category pages, and specifically the category pages that you are targeting for SEO.

Another important point to consider with ecommerce on site content is the product descriptions. Very often, the same products are sold on multiple websites with the same manufacturer product descriptions. Google picks up the product descriptions as duplicate content across the different sites which could hurt your rankings and SEO. The best-case scenario for this is to re-write all of your product descriptions so they are sure to be unique across all websites selling the same product. This is of course time and resource intensive, but good things never come without a cost, and if you want to stay ahead of your competition, this is one way to make sure you do.

As part of our [...]

By |May 29th, 2012|eCommerce SEO|Comments Off on On Site Content for Ecommerce SEO|

Search Engine Optimization Overview: What Matters?

Search engine optimization (SEO) has become more widespread, and especially in the last two years as the internet grows by leaps and bounds. More websites means more competition, and web marketing and SEO has become critical to a website’s success whether it’s done in-house or through an outside firm. If you expect to be competitive and successful in the online space, SEO is a must have whether you do it in-house or with an outside SEO firm.

Only a few years ago, the “winners” of SEO and the sites with the best search engine ranking positions were given to the websites with the most links. Off-site links were just about the only thing that was measured. So, if you had a million links coming into your website, you were probably doing extremely well, and it didn’t matter where those links came from. 100,000 links from message board spammers in India? No problem, you still got the SEO juice. More recently, Google and other search engines have taken steps to reduce and eliminate the effectiveness of such linking schemes, and reward the websites with relevant “high value” links. Recent “Panda” and “Penguin” updates from Google have had significant impact on what works and what doesn’t – but more on that later….

There are many pieces of a successful SEO puzzle, and some are more important than others. I’ll briefly explain each part here, and then each separately in more detail in future blogs. There are four main areas of SEO to take into consideration when developing a winning SEO campaign: 1) On-site content and optimization, 2) off site link building opportunities, 3) social media presence and activity, and [...]

By |May 18th, 2012|Search Marketing|Comments Off on Search Engine Optimization Overview: What Matters?|

Bing and Yahoo – Do They Matter for SEO?

It’s no secret that Google is the most widely used search engine, and the number of Google users vastly outweighs the number of users on Yahoo and Bing combined. This gives Google tremendous power and authority over the market. When it comes down to SEO, the experts are always focused on what works for Google, because that’s where the majority of online search traffc is generated. Since most traffic comes from Google, we always focus on what works best for Google because that will have the biggest impact on results.

Where does that leave Bing and Yahoo? Should you just forget about them and not even consider them at all for your SEO? The answer is, of course, no you should not forget about them, because they are capable of bringing more traffic and customers to your site. Why ignore a potential revenue stream? Estimates vary, and many people agree that Google accounts for about 70% of online searches, while the remaining search engines divide up the remaining 30%, with Bing and Yahoo having the largest parts of it.

As for SEO for Bing and Yahoo, we don’t recommend specifically optimizing for those search engines because all of the efforts you make to optimize for Google will also benefit your rankings on those search engines as well. Doing things like increasing the amount of unique written content on your website, building links to quality relevant websites, writing press releases, and creating social media content and interactions will all help benefit your SEO for Google, Bing, and Yahoo. By optimizing your website and keywords for Google, you will receive the same benefits on other [...]

By |May 15th, 2012|Search Marketing|Comments Off on Bing and Yahoo – Do They Matter for SEO?|

Google Shopping Results Overview

We already discussed the importance of organic keyword results for ecommerce businesses. Another area of Google that ecommerce businesses should optimize is their Google shopping results, also known as Google product search. By getting your products into the Google product search results you will increase your exposure to potential customers. If a customer is searching for a specific product, they may end up looking at Google shopping, and if your products aren’t listed there, you have no chance of securing a sale. There are a couple ways to submit your products to Google shopping, the first is a product feed by using an XML file, FTP, or Google Merchant Center. The second way to get your products into Google shopping is to use the Content data API for Shopping, which can be fully integrated similar to other Google data APIs. This method is more technical and difficult to set up.

Not only do your products need to be listed in Google shopping, they need to be competitively priced in order to compete within that space. Consumers are more and more price conscious these days, especially when Google shopping lists out all of the available options and prices with the ability to sort by price, etc. Many times when customers are searching for a brand name product, they don’t care where they get it as long as they get it for a good price. Unfortunately price plays a large role in the success of Google product search, so if you hope to make sales with Google shopping, your pricing must be competitive.

The third piece of the Google shopping puzzle is getting your producs to rank high on the [...]

By |May 10th, 2012|eCommerce SEO|Comments Off on Google Shopping Results Overview|

Google Organic Keyword Results Overview

Organic keyword results are the bread and butter of search engine optimization, although, effective methods of how to improve your keyword rankings have changed quite a bit over the last year or two. That doesn’t change the fact that ecommerce websites simply must have some good organic keyword rankings for their industry and products if they want to be competitive, make sales, and stay in business! The difference between a keyword ranked in the 11th position to the 3rd and especially the 1st position can often mean a tremendous increase in traffic to your website. Conservative estimates say about 18% of keyword traffic clicks on the 1st search result, while more aggressive estimates say closer to 36%. That traffic, of course, then becomes opportunities to create sales for your website.

Speaking of turning traffic into sales – this is a very important aspect of making your ecommerce business successful. No amount of SEO or top rankings will make you successful if you have a terrible website that is ineffective at securing sales. You obviously need products that your customers want, at competitive prices, have a simple checkout process, and ideally something to keep your customers coming back for more. That could be a customer loyalty program, great customer service, niche products, contests, promotions, and many other things. Use your imagination and think through how you can turn your existing sales into additional future sales.

So now we all know and understand that having top positions in Google is a necessity to running an effective ecommerce business, and getting there is another story. There are many schools of thought on the best way, or the most [...]

By |May 7th, 2012|eCommerce SEO|Comments Off on Google Organic Keyword Results Overview|

Google Search Overview

In this blog, I’d like to cover a brief Google search overview. Things have been changing a lot the past year with Google updating their algorithm many times. We also saw the infamous Google “Panda Update” come through in early 2011 which impacted SEO for a lot of websites because of the focus on duplicate content, although, the Panda changes have been updated and fine-tuned multiple times as well. SEO strategies that used to work don’t work as well, and some even have negative consequences!

Regardless of the changes that have been taking place, many things have remained the same, or maybe I should say they remain important. Google, of course, is still king, while Bing and Yahoo continue to flounder to find ways to increase usage. If you want to do well on the internet, you want to do well with Google. There are about seven areas of Google you need to be aware of, if not focus on and I will cover them in more detail in future blogs. Number one and two of course are organic keyword results, and Google shopping results, respectively. You simply must rank well on organic keywords in order to remain competitive in your ecommerce industry. You also need to have your products set up in Google shopping, and be performing there as well. News results, video results, and image results also play a part in the Google SEO equation, with video being particularly important and valuable if done correctly. Last but not least, local results and brand results – specifically the six pack need to be considered. These are the things that need to be [...]

By |May 2nd, 2012|Search Marketing|Comments Off on Google Search Overview|