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Earn Links Organically With a User-Focused Content Strategy

Content StrategyBloggers and website owners know too well the importance of quality content. Actually, the value derived from your site by users is largely determined by the content, other factors come later.

Creating user-focused content will help your website earn organic links as well as helping your online business thrive. Getting to know exactly what your users want can be an uphill task. The tips below (segmented into two parts) will help you develop content that will not only help retain current users but attract potential clients as well.

Part I: Know exactly what your audience like

Figuring how exactly what resonantes with your target audience is vital to the health of your content strategy. Extracting this information can not only fuel a link earning content strategy, but also ignite aspects of your SEO strategy. Below are a few ways in which you can learn more about your audience.

Talk to your clients

Remember without engaging your users you will never ever learn more on their tastes and preferences. After posting something on your site ask them questions concerning that particular topic. Also, your system should allow users to leave their phone numbers and email addresses when making comments. This way you can contact them later and have a more personal conversation or even send them mails.

Note that communicating to clients is very important in establishing long-term relationships and even building trust. Clients will always feel how much you value them and be very honest with you.

Conduct background research

Usually when you post content, users will comment, like and even share that information. Be very keen and take track of these responses. When you talk to users they will tell you what interests but you can only know the truth after presenting that content.

Get to know the number of tweets and Facebook shares a particular post gave you. For example if you post an article an article about traveling tips and another about health, look at the response you get for both. If the article on health issues elicits more reaction, then your users are more concerned about their health and not traveling.

Note that these are judgments made from simply observing what happens. Dig deep into what makes users value another topic and not the other.

Study the trends in social media

Social media is important to the success of any online marketing and SEO strategy. As such, study what happens on social media very carefully. People may not be reading or sharing your content not because it lacks value but due to the language and style of content. Learn to use the jargon that is appropriate for either twitter or Facebook at that given time. Also do not limit yourself to Twitter and Facebook use sites as LinkedIn and Pinterest as well.

Be efficient with alerts and RSS feeds

Sometimes you might be committed and rarely have time to follow up on current news. Using Google and Talkwalker alerts will save you time. Set up alerts depending on your niche, that way you will be notified whenever something important comes up.

Part I: Develop content that resonates with your audience

Once you established the means for which you can generate ideas, now comes the harder part of actually putting those ideas in motion. Below are a few tips to help direction your efforts with the right intentions.

Work hard to retain your current customers

As much as you are looking to expand your client base, never ignore existing clients. It is important that your current clients or users remain loyal. Be creative and craft ways of rewarding loyal customers. For example you can offer those discounts, incentives, free shipping and coupons. This way they will feel appreciated, make repeated purchases and refer others.

Create content that targets your niche

If you operate a local American travel website, the content might interest someone from Europe who is interested in visiting America. Therefore develop your content to cater for that particular area but make it appealing to others also. As such, you will get numerous links that are from both within and without.

Think locally and act globally

Creating a natural content strategy that favors your local audience is not a bad idea. However, in order to attract more users develop something that can be consumed by people of diverse cultures.

For example, if you own a website that advises on health matters in your region, you can design the content to suit anyone. Health is diverse and problems related to health are common in most parts of the world. As a hint you can have a list of as many health facilities as possible and let users search the ones closer to them. If you liaise with the health facilities, then you can agree on commission rates for each referral.

The most important thing in link earning is to know what your users want. After that you can develop tailor made content to specifically meet their needs. Remember the importance of social media in expanding your customer base. Also note that there is no standard formula when it come s to natural link building, just use the mentioned tips and a little creativity.

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How to Integrate Custom Design Software on Your Ecommece Website

Neon Tank TopsPeople want to express themselves and want to showcase how creative and unique they are. One of the most common ways people can do this is through custom designed clothing.

Whether it's custom tank tops or hats, online clothing stores that offer custom clothing capabilities have become really popular. But what further separates the most popular and authoritative custom clothing websites from the rest are those who allow visitors to do the designing directly from the website.

If you're clothing site owner or marketer looking to tap into this niche, you'll want to integrate custom design software on your ecommerce website. In this article, we'll show you how.

Custom Designer Interface

The easiest way for your customers to custom design clothing is via your website. Usually, this feature will have its dedicated tab or page which has a blank shirt, tank top, or canvass to work with.

Users can choose the color and size and customize it to their liking. The amount of customization will depend on what you can handle and what the software is capable of. However numerous your customizations are, the user interface should be easy to use and not tasking to the customer.

Creating a feature like this on your website is a very hard task-- something that will eat up a lot of your time and is probably outside your field of expertise all together as this is a very high-level task to accomplish. Fortunately, there are already a lot of pre-made custom design software available online which you can purchase and easily add to your website.

Integrating the Software

Tools such as LiveArt are easy to use and the setup process will comprise of most of the work. For instance, one online store that offers custom neon tank tops The Neon South uses Design Studio on their website. It is easy to use and provides ready to use outputs in PDF, PNG, or SVG formats.

You will still need to delve into some web codes to integrate this to your website but since it is built on HTML5, it is relatively easy to do so. A little bit of web coding is needed, or you can hire someone to do it for you if you are too busy to do so. Pricing options will vary depending on your needs; however, this is a lot easier and cheaper than doing it yourself.

When planning to put custom design software on your website, make sure that it is easily seen by customers. As this feature is very sought after, it is important to showcase it to your customers. Also, make sure to thoroughly advertise this feature; put it in your front banner and place links all over your website to direct them to this feature.

Implementing the Custom Design Features

Now that you have successfully integrated the software to your website, it is time to decide on how your customers will use it. You can set it so that it is based on a template shirt but they can customize it afterwards, or you can choose a shirt design and they can do variations to it like the color of the shirt or the color of the accents. Choose an implementation that is suitable for your needs.

Also, make sure that you are able to deliver on the feature that you decided on; it might be tempting to allow customers to have full control over their customization but if it becomes difficult for you to make the said shirt, then it will become a bigger problem.

Why Custom Designed Clothing Wins

Granted not everyone has the time or the creativity to want to design their own shirts, the mere fact that you are giving your customers freedom and choice is already a huge plus. If your customers have the freedom to express themselves and be unique, this will do a very big thing for your brand.

Custom design software is the future of clothing brands as this allows customers to make a truly unique shirt of their own. This is not a gimmicky feature that will simply fade away; this trend is slowly becoming the norm. This trend is even slowly moving into the mobile space allowing customers to design their choice shirts on the go.

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3 Pillars of a Powerful Ecommerce Marketing Strategy

Ecommerce Marketing StrategyThe secret of making an ecommerce site profitable is to develop and formulate a sound marketing strategy. A cohesive, mindfully-orchestrated, and powerful ecommerce marketing strategy will go a long way in helping you to attract prospective, in-market customers, and thus earn a healthy return.

To get started on the righteous path of developing your ecommerce marketing strategy, below are three essential marketing strategies that can elevate you ecommerce site from mediocre to something extraordinary.

Search Engine Marketing

SEM is touted as an art of internet marketing that incorporates certain techniques to promote better website visibility and attracts more traffic by boosting page ranks. Visibility is the key to success amidst the stiff competition that prevails in the internet sphere.

This type of marketing system is considered useful for most businesses to enhance their visibility through advertisement and optimization. Search engine marketing encompasses both Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising, which are the two viable options for optimizing your web presence and increasing the amount of traffic to your site.

If these are endeavors in which your company as already pursued, then perhaps consider an ecommerce SEO assessment or perhaps a consultation in PPC campaign optimization.

Content Marketing

The main idea behind content marketing is to attract, acquire and retain customers by consistently creating and distributing relevant and valuable content. As it lures and attracts the prospective customers it is touted as a “pull” strategy rather than a “push” strategy. You can share information about your business in the form of e-books, blogs, press releases, videos, audios and online events.

Social Media Marketing

Using social media sites for marketing can bring about a dramatic difference to your business. You can engage with people and share content on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Youtube, LinkedIn and Pinterest. The indomitable growth of social media has made it a valuable tool for businesses to promote products, services and create brand awareness. No wonder top marketers are consistently using social media marketing techniques to retain a commanding and dominating position in the market place.

Cohesion Yields Synergy

Search engine marketing, content marketing and social media marketing are different Internet marketing methodologies to promote a business online and to build brand recognition. The ultimate goal of all of them is to drive huge traffic in order to make a strong online presence.

Yes, all these three are creative online marketing strategies to succeed online. All these innovative marketing approaches are interrelated and a cohesive approach will not only help one in attaining leading positions but also promote solid brand building. Integrating these breakthrough approaches and consistently utilizing these marketing techniques can enable an ecommerce website to aggressively and passionately thrive in this highly competitive business world.

All the above discussed ecommerce marketing strategies are the cornerstones of a successful ecommerce website. All three aims at increasing traffic to your online ecommerce website, improving your page rank and to bring in more customers. Attraction marketing strategy is the prevailing trend as it helps people chasing you rather than you chasing them. Incorporate a cohesive approach of these marketing strategies and rule the internet world.

 

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Tips to Use Schema.org for Your Ecommerce SEO Strategy

Before you start using Schema.org for ecommerce SEO, it is important to learn a few things about what it all entails or seek some professional help. Even though it is advisable to learn some coding so as to be proficient in it, one can still do a lot once he or she knows the basic construction rules and common terms used in marking up the text.

First and foremost, it is important to note that Schema.org is not a protocol neither is it a markup language on its own. It is a collection of a large amount of micro data mark vocabulary that is explained and organized at the official site. Its main aim is to make the use of structured data easier to understand for search engine crawlers and webmasters, which in turn can enhance a company's ecommerce SEO strategy. It was developed by Yahoo, Google and Bing in 2011 and is now the preferred method by search engines for web owners to structure their content if they want a rich snippet in search results.

Schemas for Rich Snippets

To populate rich snippets, there are certain schema types that one should use especially for Google and Bing. Some of these schemas include:

  • Review, which shows reviewer and average rating.
  • Products, it shows price range and availability.
  • Events, it shows the date, time and actual place.
  • People, it shows the organization, position or title and location.
  • Recipes, it shows cooking time, calories and ingredients.
  • Video, it shows time and video thumbnail image.

Organization is another schema type, but it is mostly used in detailed and in depth articles. It is also insightful to note that Bing naturally does not display or show rich snippets as often as Google does, even though it will not generate any rich snippets for time sensitive pages. Schema types such as Review and Products form an important part of any ecommerce SEO as they provide prospects and clients with relevant and accurate data.

SEO Value of Schema

It is important to appreciate that the use of structured data does not appeal to human users, neither is it intended for them. It is specifically meant for the search engine’s consumption and subsequent display of relevant search results. Because the major search engines namely Google, Yahoo, Bing and lately Yandex the largest search engine in Russia have endorsed Schema.org as the most appropriate markup language to use.

It is also worth noting that its continuous rise does affect both webmasters and bloggers in equal measure as it greatly improves the sites visibility in all search results. Thus for owners of ecommerce sites that rely on selling their products online, using Schema for SEO is paramount.

If you intend to use the social media to attract traffic to your ecommerce site, it is advisable to use other social graph protocols that have been developed by social network giants such as Facebook and Twitter. Their rich data can be used on the same page as schema.org. For Facebook make sure you use Open Graph and for Twitter one should use Twitter card, there has been no conflict even when all the 3 rich data markup’s have been used in the same page.

When using Schema.org, all the search engines do require webmasters to have most of the markup from Schema.org visible to the human being; this means that one should avoid using the Meta tag as much as possible. As an ecommerce site this will allow crawlers to work freely and faster with your pages; attracting enough web traffic for your site in the process.

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5 Web Design Friendly Ecommerce Platforms

Most business owners agree that ecommerce is the way to go for business growth and prosperity in today's digital world. Business owners however have to ensure that their business websites are well structured, easy to use and attractive in order to realize all the benefits associated with ecommerce. Fortunately, getting the right ecommerce web design is as easy as getting the right platform that offer enough applications to meet most if not all business owners ecommerce requirements and at the same time ensure a rich customer experience.

Ecommerce platforms are designed to make both small business web design and enterprise-level web design for big box retailers easy as they provide the tools required to run an online store successfully. Here we review the top five ecommerce platforms on the market that have been proven to offer the best web designs for basic online store owners.

1. Shopify

Shopify platform makes it possible to create easy to use ecommerce stores making it a good option for small scale businesses that that just require an uncomplicated system with built in designs. Shopify is a hosted platform which means that users never have to worry about hosting, software installation and platform performance and can concentrate on running and growing their business. The platform also offers 24 hour support well equipped to handle any queries and help users solve any problems that users encounter.

A transaction fee is charged for basic and professional plans, and an unlimited plan comes at a monthly cost of slightly less than $180. This might seem too high for some business owners but the integrated hosting and custom made designs makes it worth every penny.

2. Square Space

Square Space is the best platform for business owners looking for simple yet visually rich web design. The platforms allows the user to make beautiful professional looking websites making it ideal for designers and photographers who want to have many quality images on their websites. Square Space comes with some handy applications that allow inventory management, unlimited products upload and sales taxes configuration in addition to ensuring that customers have a satisfactory shopping experience.

3. BigCommerce

BigCommerce is another hosted platform that is friendly to most business owners. The platform comes with over 100 free templates to suit different businesses' unique requirements. The platform also comes with a list of designers that users who prefer custom made designs can use to get their requirements met.

Where ecommerce website usability is concerned, business owners get detailed reports, a variety of marketing features that include coupon codes and gift certificates, and are able to manage customer orders from the admin dashboard. Customers on the other hand get to enjoy a single page checkout that gives them a chance to review products and an easy time shopping even on their mobile devices.

4. Magneto

Magento is an open ecommerce platform that allows web designers and developers to create custom made websites to suit every businesses unique requirements. The platform is free and comes with a number of free templates and premium templates. Magento Go allows small business owners to come up with their own ecommerce designs and is equipped with features, themes and extensions that make it easy for business owners to customize their websites. Business owners looking for a more detailed ecommerce site however need to get web design services from competent web designers.

5. Volusion

Volusion is one of the pioneers in ecommerce having been launched in 1999. Over time, the platform has built a reputation and is regarded as the platform of choice for most business owners. Volusion has a wide selection of per-designed stores that are up to date and match current customer requirements.

The ecommerce platform is a hosted solution which comes at a price but with $120 per month, a business owner can comfortably run a medium sized store on this platform. This makes the platform affordable for small businesses that are starting out. Its many features also make it ideal for medium sized businesses that might require a more detailed store to match its capacity.

The five platforms discussed form a fraction of the best platforms that make wed design when it comes to ecommerce stores possible and stress free for business owners. Many other platforms exist and business owners have to take their time and select the platform that promises to meet all their business requirements and take their investments to a higher level.

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