eCommerce for many businesses is their lifeblood and their sole source of income. For others, it is a value-added service to their loyal following and those too far away to come into a physical store. We all know companies like Amazon, Target, and Walmart that sell their products online so we all know what the purpose of what eCommerce has. What many don’t realize is an eCommerce is not the same as a regular website. All the items of a regular website matter but in different ways. A third of all our clients doing online sales it’s time to truly look at what works for eCommerce.
Back before 2010, and even today some people have too much social media. One might wonder how you can have too much social as social is getting out there, talking, and getting your good word out to the masses. Well, it can happen to everyone, including you. You can have too much social and when you do you will actually set your social media back. Social media is as important to have a website with great content and optimized for not only your readers but the search engines.
Over the past 30-days, I challenged myself to write some very short (500-1,000 words or less) blog articles. This goes against many that say you should make your articles from 2,000-3,000 words for optimal search engine optimization. This 30-blog article exercise had a challenge and two hidden objectives that I didn’t tell anyone. The challenge was the topics were chosen by others and randomly selected by one of our computer programs. The second was what would happen search engine optimization wise writing 30 blog articles in 30-days. The final and third reason was to stress test some blog functionality being we now have several influencers in multiple industries using our blogging system specifically for increased SEO. Let’s take a look at what happened, what worked, what was improved, and talk about a few gems that were not expected during this entire process.
eCommerce is a growing sector of the Internet. It is growing around 10% per year and increasing each year. eCommerce is our fastest growing segment for the past two years with our clients. Many clients are either doing two websites or they are doing solely eCommerce. Part of this is due to our own push on eCommerce where we are reducing the credit card percent, transaction fees, and monthly fees with our credit card providers. The other is businesses want revenue from their internet marketing presence. We have clients on nopCommerce, Etsy, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, and Shopify.
The day I decided to start my own business scared the crap out of me. I was going from a beyond comfortable guaranteed income to one where it was a complete unknown. Since I was twelve years old I had worked. Starting out as a paperboy for the Chesterton Tribune was my first step into being a freelancer as I might have delivered newspapers but was responsible for collecting money and delivering the product. I wanted the money for candy, fancy shoes, and anything else a teenager would want. I know that in the past five years if I would have stayed working for “the man” I would be close to having made half million dollars in that short period of time. So why in the world would anyone give up luxury for something less? Actually, I didn’t!
I find it appropriate to write about being human on a day I am truly struggling with humanity. I am human after all (I know shocking – even to me) so why not talk about being human, making mistakes, treating people around me with respect, and making a positive influence in people’s lives. When you grow up in a small town like Chesterton Indiana which has some really great values and then move to a growing community like Valparaiso Indiana you wouldn’t think that I would have any struggles with being human at all.
Feedback for any business is crucial to its success. You can learn what your customers are enjoying as well as areas for improvement. The key to any feedback is it not be attacking but helpful. The people that are providing feedback are doing so as they want to be heard. This is whether the experience is a positive one or a negative one. In the old days, we had feedback forms that could either be filled out during that stay or mailed in on a postcard. There are several ways of gaining feedback from users today and we’re going to look at the top three methods of not only getting feedback but also how to protect your business from negative feedback (as much as possible).
At one time we have all procrastinated and waited until that very last moment to try and get something done. We are normally not happy with the results and the results tend to show that we rushed, didn’t think everything through, and almost certainly didn’t get the results we were expecting. We have seen this a lot and even with ourselves in years past where we only marketed our company when things were slowing down. We went into a panic mode saying we need to add a customer or we’re doomed (well not that bad but I think you understand).
Marketing like everything isn’t hard but a time-consuming process that requires diligence and a strive for excellence. There is a service marketing standard called the 7 P’s of marketing. There’s also an 8th P which we will also cover which extends the 7 P’s to include one more (go figure). By being patient, studying your market, and taking care of your customer’s needs marketing is something that can propel your business to a new level.
As a company that lives on customer service and quickly communicating we live within our email system. Not only does our internal Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system keep us informed of deadlines, new tasks (e.g. work to be done), and new leads & clients it sends and communicates with our customers. On any given day we send out hundreds of emails to keep communication at the highest level possible. Email though for us is not our primary communication method as there are a lot of downsides to it. Let’s look at how we use email and how we don’t.
It is no wonder that over 40% of our clients use eCommerce to sell their products and services. Nearly 8 out of every 10 Americans is using online shopping to purchase products and services. When the search engines stated 50% of the internet was using mobile there was a big push to fix websites to be mobile friendly. With roughly 80% of the internet purchasing online shouldn’t you have a piece of the pie as well as being optimized to take the best advantage of it? We think so and these are my top tips for rocking your eCommerce SEO organically.
On the internet being found organically (or free) is what the internet game is about. Sure, you can pay the search engines to rank but that puts you into always paying. Why not pay on your own terms rather than on the terms of the search engines? Successful websites are ones that are found organically (and paid if you want a wider audience). Your marketing shouldn’t be solely paid as that is a plan for failure. We’re going to look at one of the biggest factors I continue to see when moving a website up in the search engines organically. That is pages with low word counts.