If you have an idea for an ecommerce venture or are thinking about taking your retail business online, now is the time to seize the moment and start taking action. Below we have compiled a few general strategies for those interested in pursuing ecommerce as a new road to success.
Just like a brick and mortar business, ecommerce requires that you understand the market for your products. The first thing to do is see if consumers are looking online for the products or services you are planning to offer. Google's Keyword Tool should provide you with the traffic volume data you need. Enter a list of 20 or so keywords which best describe your products and see if the results offer viability in terms of demand. Low traffic keywords doesn't necessarily equate to low viability. Certain products, by their nature, will manifest low numbers, but may in fact be ideal for your ecommerce efforts. Also try searching your desired keywords in Google just as you would from a consumer’s standpoint. This can help you gauge just how competitive these keywords are, in accordance with traffic data. Are companies bidding on your keywords in the paid or sponsored listings? How many sites are competing in results (found just below the keyword entry box)? If competition is low, you might be able to carve your niche on many desirable keywords.
Software for ecommerce is expensive but it can provide a strong foundation for online retailers with a lot of products. A good system carries a number of features that includes seamless integration with merchandizing, product tracking and reporting, as well as sales and conversion data. When researching ecommerce software, look for integrative features like SEO and CMS functions, content editing, and if the program includes “back office” functionality for warehouse management and stock control. Last but not least, a solid software platform for ecommerce should have an effective payment system that enables seamless authorizations and product settlements.
There are several excellent ways to market your website and its products. And because many of the techniques for ecommerce marketing are highly specialized, many experts will agree that consulting with an experience ecommerce Internet marketer is the best approach. This way, you can rest assure knowing that the right tools and strategies are in place to maximize your website and product’s visibility. Ecommerce marketers commonly use a combination of organic SEO, Pay Per Click advertising, affiliate marketing, and social media. Typically, search engine optimization ideal for low-competition markets, such as those products that Amazon and other powerful websites are not optimizing for. When SEO deems too competitive, many Internet marketers utilize paid search advertising and other forms content marketing and direct online marketing. Consultancy services are also a good route to take for ecommerce marketing, especially if your inventory is small or if you have a very niche product line that you know best. Here professional Internet marketers can offer insights and training on how to establish your own SEO or PPC program.
Ecommerce is becoming more and more prevalent, particularly through mobile devices. And because consumers are shopping on there smartphones, having a mobile-friendly shopping cart is going to be the new “must have” for online retailers. Keep reading the Web Ecommerce Solutions blog to stay fresh on the best practices of ecommerce and online marketing.continue...
As more consumers are utilizing the convenience of smartphones for shopping and researching products, ecommerce stores are presented with a new opportunity. In a recent survey focusing on the quality of mobile phone services of amongst a multi-industry roster of ecommerce store, one international pharmaceutical company scored the highest. The results from the study display signs of the growing need for businesses to start taking on mobile-friendly website to better suit their markets shopping behaviors.
The implications derived from the study made by dotCommerce are clear. It is imperative for web marketers to develop web pages that are easily accessible from mobile devices. According to the study, only one third of businesses involved provided a dedicated mobile website for potential customers.
Ben Stavely, top honcho for dotCommerce sums it up quite nicely. He said, "growing consumer expectations and a fiercely competitive market make this an area where getting left behind is a big risk and yet, a very real possibility".
The mobile ecommerce study further revealed that navigation is critical factor in determining mobile rendering quality. The worst performing aspects were payment confirmations and checkout processes. With predictions for mobile shopping coming up positive, it is reasonable to assume that the holiday season will usher in tremendous opportunities for those who have prepared for this challenge ahead of time.
Many of the businesses involved in the study gave survey participants the impression that they lack understanding of what mobile shoppers demand. Confirming the arrival of mobile shopping as a way to boost sales, the challenge is on for ecommerce websites to provide solutions for this need. Referring to the results of the study, Stavely added that, "these findings paint a clear picture of the mobile challenge retailers must tackle today".continue...
With the holidays fast approaching, Google has marked the critical Australian Ecommerce dates leading to gift-giving season. December 4, 11, and 16 are the dates that would make the most impact for Australian retailers hoping to cash in on the holiday shopping frenzy.
December 4 marks the closing of the international shopping window and people will start looking at local stores to fill up their gift lists. By December 11, worrying over whether gifts can be delivered on time will occupy a lot of people's minds. If you can guarantee delivery by the 24th, you'll have lots of sales opportunities.
The 16th is expected to be frantic, since this is the last day that most shops can ensure timely delivery. Google recommends effective advertising to ensure that your company makes the most of the season.
The period leading to these important holiday dates require better advertising campaigns. Ross McDonald, Google Australia's head of retail says that "major retail advertisers miss 80% of their potential search traffic because their daily ad budgets were the same as the middle of the year".
Most consumers begin their holiday shopping the day after Thanksgiving, often referred to as Black Friday. So start building your arsenal now prep-up for these big dates.continue...
Calling all ecommerce PPC marketers! Here we will share an expert Pay Per Click advertising tip to maximize your ecommerce PPC efforts. Some of the real professionals in PPC may already be familiar with this neat little ninja trick, but for many mid-level ecommerce advertisers, this is a tool that offers tremendous direction and insight.
To find the foundation to this trick, click into the Campaigns tab in Google AdWords. In the lower sub-set of tabs is an option toward the right side called Dimensions. The Dimensions tab reveals valuable data about your campaigns' performance.
In the Dimensions tab, you can better learn the nature of your audience how it's reacting to your ecommerce PPC advertising efforts. On the left side, note the various View options. Here you can find different categories of information, such as the Search Terms that are triggering your ads, as well as the Times of Day in which your ads are being shown. In essence, the Dimensions tab can show you how well your impressions are truly panning out.
From the Dimensions tab, you can reveal many profitable opportunities and advancements in your Pay Per Click endeavors. Pinpoint areas to expand into new ad groups, find out when to pause and activate select campaigns, and target certain keywords that simply do not apply (negative keyword research.)
The Dimensions tab is particularly valuable for PPC advertisers who use broad and modified-broad phrase match bidding. The Search Terms View can show you the precise search terms that are triggering your ads. This data can help pinpoint keywords that resulting in wasted impressions. Additionally, this View enables you spot keyword phrases that profitable and worthy of their own ad groups.
Begin exploring the Dimensions tab and start advancing your Pay Per Click ecommerce strategy to the next level.continue...
Deep link building is a highly effective technique to improve you Ecommerce SEO efforts. Not only does deep linking help promote specific product pages in the search engines, but deep link building helps the overall performance of the domain.
In essence, backlinks that are not directed to a website’s homepage are called as deep links. These links are actually directed to one of the sub-pages of the concerned website. This form of linking is importance for large websites in order to make them more popular on search engines like Yahoo, Google, and Bing. It helps the website being optimized to be found by people who are looking for keywords in their searches. Deep linking for ecommerce is a very important aspect, because it helps the optimization of those inner-pages that often influence conversions.
Deep linking tells the search engine that our website offers relevant and desired information in all its content. It is one of the most powerful tools to advertise the content of our site throughout the Web. Links are like votes, and using deep links makes our content more relevant to the search engines.
An ecommerce website can always use more traffic, thus improving its conversion opportunities. Thus better link popularity is a prerequisite for search engines optimization when it comes to ecommerce. Any ecommerce site will benefit from deep linking to pages that provide product information and the like. These pages are often the most important, and when linked to, can find their way to the search engine results.
1) Get all of your link building resources in line, whether that be article submissions, forum posts, or blog commenting.
2) Determine the sub-pages and product pages of your ecommerce website that offer the most value.
3) Pinpoint the keyword phrases that you plan to target for each sub-page for SEO purposes.
4) Use your link building resources to direct relevant anchor text links to these inside pages.
5) Boom! That's deep linking!
It's a pretty straight forward process and it doesn't require much SEO or technical background. Keep deep linking for SEO and exploit a powerful web ecommerce solution.continue...
As one of the prime features of an ecommerce site, product pages demand much need attention. Smart marketers make use of effective SEO measures that target product pages because this is the bread and butter of the website.
Keen shoppers look into various product pages of different ecommerce stores. Not only do these pages serve as the "sales pitch," but product pages should find the favor of search engines to attract buyers in the first place.
By making use of these 6 solid and surefire ecommerce SEO tips for product pages, marketers can enhance the search engine performance of ecommerce store as well as attract more buyers in the process.
The most important ecommerce SEO measure that can optimize product pages is creating unique descriptions for all the products on the site. Product page content should include product benefits, as well as a moderate inclusion of the targeted keyword (which can improve the page rankings of the product page.)
The PR or PageRank of a website helps to define its authority and prowess in the search engines. If a domain has a PR of 5 on the homepage, pages closely linked to that domain may be credited with more search engine authority.
Instead of burying product pages deep into a site by means of multiple categories and sub-categories, product pages should be kept close to the greatest source related to page rank. This maybe as simple as scripting the product page URLs directly to the root of the domain.
Product pages are often filled with images. In addition, product images are appearing in the blended search results more and more. As a result, all the images should be optimized to enhance the performance of product pages in an ecommerce site. This includes a well written ALT tag as well as proper linking set-up in ecommerce product images.
Search engines look for unique content, and allowing (as well as subtlety promoting) customers to review products is a great way to publish unique, user-generated content.
A significant ecommerce SEO measure is including keyword-rich links that connect relevant product pages together. This will not only improve navigation and help facilitate sales, but will also contribute to improved SEO performance.
With customers staying active in social media platforms, it can be ideal to allow customers to tag various products with their own choice of keywords. By allowing customers to tag products, an ecommerce site can begin earning better rankings on related keywords.
By making use of some of these product page SEO tips for ecommerce, an online retailer can improve the performance of its product pages from both conversion optimization standpoint as well as search engine optimization standpoint. Thanks for reading the Web Ecommerce Solutions blog!continue...
The wrapping-up of the holiday season would usually mean a marketing halt for most ecommerce stores. Many online businesses assume the peak of storm has calmed, so they slack on their post-holiday sales strategies.
In today’s digital age, many the opportunities for ecommerce extend well beyond Christmas and into the new year. Below we outline a list of reasons why ecommerce web marketing and sales strategies should continue well beyond the holiday season.
Gift Cards: Ecommerce stores that offer gift cards should definitely keep up their web marketing efforts, however with a slightly different approach then a pre-holiday strategy. Consumers will be more apt to add more goods into their online shopping carts with incentives like "free shipping on purchases over $50" or "buy X amount, get Y for 50% off." These promotions will have gift card recipients checking-out with balances exceeding their gift card amount.
Inventory Clearance: The post-holiday season is a popular time for deal seekers. This is the ideal time to dedicate product categories to after-Christmas specials and post-holiday mark-downs. Not only can this help get rid of old inventory for next year's models, but this can also be a way to attract new customers through creative web marketing.
Complementary Shopping: A DVD player is not complete with a few favorite movies to enjoy. Many online shoppers are looking for complementary products to enhance the gifts that they have received during the holiday season. Particularly for digital devices, focusing on complementary shoppers and their motives is wise web marketing move.
Learn from the Holiday Storm: The evaluation of key online sales data after the holiday season, such as that of Google Analytics, can offer a wealth of information. Pinpoint strengths and weaknesses based on your ecommerce web marketing efforts over the holidays, and target specific areas to grow and improve.
The end of the holiday season does not mean the end of the shopping season for ecommerce businesses. Your web marketing and sales efforts should be refined and continued for several weeks beyond the peak of the season. Get creative and find ways that will incentivize the post-holiday swarm of shoppers.continue...
Even though businesses are still using marketing platforms like TV, radio, and print, the effects of ecommerce are growing bigger and better. The Internet can be accessed by anyone, from any part of the world and at any time. This makes ecommerce a more convenient and efficient option for marketing and product sales for retailers.
Just like fashion and technology, ecommerce also has trends that stem from the latter examples. The underlying trends for ecommerce look bright. Small businesses to large corporate brands are able to reach out to their audiences and facilitate their buying behaviors in highly effective ways.
Today, most people tend to visit social networking sites more than any other type of website. Due to this, most of the latest trends in ecommerce have shifted focus onto these sites. In addition, the devices in which we conduct online shopping have shifted from PC's and laptops to smartphones and other PDA's. This too has been an increase focus for ecommerce companies.
There are several social sites that can be used today for ecommerce efforts; however the main one that is rating high on the ecommerce trends for 2012 is Facebook.
F-commerce is one of the ecommerce trends for 2012 that involves conducting business over the social network site Facebook. In fact, the trend is viewed to be one of the best in future based on the majority influence that the social site has.
In fact, today, there are millions of people on Facebook and many of these individuals are sharing opinions on products and brands. Apart from just the easy access to Facebook, businesses can take advantage of various tools such as Facebook coupons and now new features that facilitate actual product purchases.
The act of shopping through mobile devices is another trend that is significantly picking up among consumers. In fact, in the UK alone, it is said to increase by almost 53% in the next year at a spending rate of Euro 4.5 billion.
In case you are one of those businessmen out there who is looking for the perfect ecommerce strategy, then M-commerce is the ideal option that you need to take. This is because, in the near future, almost everyone will be using their mobile devices like smartphones to facilitate their shopping endeavors. The only real investment is finding a mobile apps developer to design a mobile-friendly ecommerce application that meets the interests of your sales objectives.
There are more ecommerce trends for 2012 that you may also need to consider depending on the type of business that you are involved in. However, the above mentioned are some of the best that will be able to give your business the exposure that you need.
Are you curious about any ecommerce trends? Let us know in the comments section below.continue...
Applying social media to your ecommerce marketing strategy is a must. Social is a serious stimulant for ecommerce in that the potential these platforms have are immense:
Social media connects your ecommerce site with millions of potential customers. Additionally, social media helps to sustain loyalty in customers and helps your ecommerce store stay top of mind with your market.
To make the most of social media marketing for ecommerce, you must do more than just choose the right channels (e.g. Google+, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) You must be able to communicate effectively, timely, and righteously.
In this article, our focus is helping you sharpen your lines of communication so that when you go to execute your social media marketing strategy, and you will have a solid perspective on how to capture the attention and respect of you audience.
Your social communications need to be engaging, clear, and concise to have the most effectiveness. When it comes to Facebook and Google+, be sure to limit how much you say to the bare minimum and share content of value. Often times less is more, and if you share something awesome without having to say much, you can earn a solid reputation and earn much need respect.
Much of this is attributed to the underlying perspective and behaviors of most social users. People use social platforms for enjoyment, or as a retreat from their bustling life. This is why you will want to be a Buddha of ecommerce enlightenment and only say what is needed. Long, drawn-out posts will have your audience thinking "I don't have time to ready this paragraph..." So keep it short and to-the-point.
Sticking to a common social media strategy is important because you will learn from your mistakes and successes. As a result, you can improve your communications and understand what works and what doesn't. Follow a consistent pattern in your postings, not only in what you say but also when you say it. Make your posts regular and on a consistent basis.
Take this into consideration across all of you social platforms. Twitter is very different from other platforms, so you will want to adopt a ecommerce strategy of consistency across the each social media channel. Any awkward our out-of-the-norm posts can result in disconnect with your loyal followers. This is a big no-no for ecommerce sites, so keep your communications consistent and regular.
It may sound simple and essential to most markets, but earn the attention and loyal sustainability of customers you have to communicate respectfully. That doesn't mean you have to say 'please' and 'thank you' in all of your posts, but rather respecting your audience by what content you put in front of their faces. In accordance with being clear and concise, be relevant and share content that is righteous to you market's liking.
You don't always need to be promoting your ecommerce site when using social media marketing. As long as you are sharing something relevant and interesting, you can br the top of mind business to you social followers. Strive to be a righteous business that promotes nothing but 'all good' things that are closely aligned with your ecommerce store.continue...
There's a lot of effort that goes into ecommerce pay per click (PPC) advertising. Ecommerce PPC campaigns a challenge to keep organized, and sometimes it seems like there's no time to develop strategies. Don't get discouraged.
There is indeed time to implement some strategies, and they're not all that hard to execute. You simply need some understanding of the Google AdWords platform and how to create a basic campaign. Below we offer five strategies for ecommerce PPC advertisers.
To produce solid ad copy that maximizes your click-through potential, your ads must include three essential elements. These are:
* Offer - what the product is you're offering
* Value - why buying this product from you is beneficial
* Proposition - what the user should do to take action
The Offer element to your ad copy is almost always given and is naturally included in the copy. It's the Value and the Proposition that are the most overlooked. The proposition is purely a call-to-action, or a verb of some sort. A couple of the most obvious for ecommerce PPC is "buy" or "save." Get creative and try more appealing verbs like "explore," "learn," or "pursue."
Stating value in your ad is one of the greatest challenges of copywriting. Pay Per Click ads have limited space for text, making it difficult to describe the benefits or unique attributes. Some of the most common are "free shipping" or using a coupon code in the ad. In some cases, taking a more emotional approach is effective. Getting to know your product and your target market is a good way to get great ideas.
Ad groups often perform the best when they're very focused to only select grouping of very related keywords. One of the biggest mistakes Pay Per Click advertisers make is having too many keywords in one ad group. As a result, they are trying to cover all of these keywords with just one ad. When this is the case, ad groups can be further segmented, or the Peel n' Stick strategy can be employed.
The process of peeling n' sticking is taking a poor performing keyword and putting it in another more relevant ad group or creating a new one. For ecommerce PPC campaign management services, good peel n' stick opportunities are often found in product variations, such as colors and models. Often times when a weak keyword placed in a new, more relevant ad group, the quality score will rise. In addition, the ad copy can be written to be more targeted.
Another awesome strategy that can significantly help improve the click-through rate (CTR) of your ads is using ad extensions in Google AdWords. Ad extensions are tools and enhancements that improve the presentation of your PPC ads. It's important to keep in mind that ad extensions are set on a campaign basis, not per ad group. So any ad extension you employ will influence all ad groups within that campaign.
One of the most effective ad extensions for ecommerce PPC are product extensions. Product extensions can display an image for the specific product being advertised, which can really make your ads stand out from the clutter. For model-specific ads, testing the product extensions feature in Google AdWords is an effective ecommerce PPC strategy.
Another solid ad extensions is using Site Links. Here you can include links in your ad that direct users to specified inside pages of your website. Not only does this help facilitate conversions and overall usability, but using the Site Links ad extension can help make your ads more prominent and outstanding in the search results. This can be very effective for competitive keywords in an ecommerce context.
Have you ever visited a product page (but did not purchase) and later noticed banner ads of the same product on other websites? That's an ecommerce store executing it's re-marketing strategy. However, instead of using Google Search, they're using the Google Display Network or GDN.
Re-marketing is a little bit tricky, but can be highly effective when done right. It's the process of serving a follow-up ad to someone who as already visited your website. Re-marketing can sometimes appear intrusive, so it's important to re-market in moderation.
Keep in mind that those being served your ads are not actively shopping like they are using search. For this reason, your ad copy and presentation should tweaked accordingly. Re-marketing is like reminding, so you want to make your presence known, but in a respectable manner.
Well we hope that the latter five strategies will help enhance your ecommerce PPC services and capabilities. If you have any comments or questions, let us know in the comments section below.continue...
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