Thursday, December 17, 2009

Optimizing eCommerce Shopping Sites

I read a blog post the other day about some of the challenges faced by webmasters of traditional e-commerce sites.  Basic shopping sites are in between a rock and a hard place.  They're a web 1.0 concept in a web 2.0 world.  Why do they survive?  Well, many don't.  But still many do!  The ones that survive do so because they are selling things that people want, and the webmasters know how to get the products in front of those that want them.

eBoot Camp: Proven Internet Marketing Techniques to Grow Your BusinessA big part of the problem is in differentiation.  What makes one herbal diet supplement site unique from another?  Should I buy the same remote-controlled car from this site or that one?  And, if they're all the same, that makes it very difficult for any one of them to rank well.

Here are some suggestions that will help you not only be unique, but also to rank higher, and draw more buying customers.

  • Optimize individual products

This is a biggie.  A lot of web browsers are just checking things out and doing research.  Others have done the study, made the decision, and now they're ready to buy.  They just need to find a site, and put down their credit card.  Optimize the individual product pages, and when someone searches for that specific product, it will be found.  Then the customer will buy from you instead of thousands of other sites that weren't as savvy as you.

To optimize your product pages, make sure, first of all, that your products are spiderable.  Check with your webmaster or the tech team of your website.  Then, make sure that the product name, brand, and model are in the page's title, and a few times in the product description.

  • Content pages

A good way to set yourself apart from EVERY OTHER WEBSITE selling the same stuff as you is to provide good useful information.  Not only does that make you unique, but it will build the customer's confidence in you.  You become an expert, not just a shop keeper.  They'll buy from you because you can help them better after the sale. 

If those content pages are optimized, too, then you'll draw in visitors while they're still doing the research I mentioned before.  Maybe they'll buy right away, maybe they'll come back.

  • Article links and blog posts

Offsite content is another great way to establish yourself as an authority in your field.  Plus, the inbound links will boost your ranking.  When you set these up, link to your main page, but also link to your product pages.  That will draw shopping traffic, and will also improve that product's search ranking.

  • Social Networking

Even if your website is still web 1.0, there's no reason you should be.  Get on Twitter, Facebook, and other social networks and talk with your audience.  Share your website with them.  Engage in the conversation. 

All of these strategies can work well to increase the value of your e-Commerce website!

Mark is currently in the curriculum Department of an internet and SEO training company. Mark also has other sites and blogs, including Mark's Black Pot - Dutch Oven Recipes, and his MoBoy blog.

No comments:

Post a Comment