Sunday 18 December 2016

The how to on – making your business search engine friendly
Online retail is a very competitive area of business. Just like the physical market there are hundreds of other sellers looking to engage and retain the highest number of consumers possible. For people to buy from you, they need to know you have what they need. And the easiest way for them to know you can meet their needs is through an online search via search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and so on.
Say a customer is looking for ethnic wear and you specialize in the sale of said apparel. That customer will enter into the search engine – best ethnic wear sellers online or affordable ethnic wear e-retailers. If you do not top this search, the customer will ignore your existence and as a result you lose to your competitors. Search engines are vital for your success in e-commerce. They serve as a medium through which you can direct traffic and make your store and the products you sell easily accessible over the internet.
Acquiring high ranking in search engine results isn’t as easy as you’d think though. The large volume of online sellers can drown out your existence. To improve your visibility you need Search Engine Optimization (SEO). It will help make your web content more search engine friendly and much easier to find. Search engine software uses specialized algorithms to acquire and rank information. The better you place in a search the greater exposure you will receive.
So today, let’s check off the things online sellers need for a more search engine friendly business.

1. Creating Good Content

The content you create and upload has a substantial role to play in SEO. Content that is accurately crafted stands a better chance of being picked up by search engines. As an e-retailer, you need to bear in mind your customers are looking for products not particular e-stores or online marketplaces.
To optimize your content you have to:
  • Avoid Duplicating Content

Make it a point to upload original content, especially when it comes to your product descriptions. The product descriptions from the manufacturer are used by many other online stores and sellers in the exact way. What’s worse is these descriptions are not even remotely capable of selling the product. Search engines are improving their ability to detect duplicate content allowing them to lower the ranking of web pages with the same information. Creating new and unique content may be time-consuming but it is vital for a better spot in search results. It will also ensure search engines do not ban or penalise you.
  • Use Relevant Keywords but Do Not Over Do It

Search engine software is smart enough to know if you are over stuffing your content with keywords. At the same time in case you under use your keywords you run the risk of becoming invisible to search engine bots. For optimal keyword utilization you need to make sure your keywords are strategically placed in ideal locations like the page title, subheadings, paragraphs, image tags, URLs, product descriptions and meta descriptions.

2.Tap Into Social Media

Most people believe that social media comes into the business equation for the sole purpose of communication with consumers. What they don’t know is their presence on social media can boost their rankings. SEO and social media are interlinked. Your popularity on social mediums can influence your search engine ranking. So it is advisable to get online and start growing your followers. Consistent posts like product updates, promotion alerts, general discussions and posting useful articles should help your cause. Google favors updates with immense publicity on social media. So, make sure the content you provide is reliable and of high quality to generate multiple likes, shares and re-posts.

3. Product Image Optimisation

With e-retail it is difficult for shoppers to thoroughly understand what you are selling. This is where pictures of your products come in handy. To help people see just how fantastic your products are, you need to use high quality images. But, how do you get consumers to come see these? The product images may be for human beings to see but for search engines robots to spot and understand the relevance of your images you need to optimize them effectively. Before posting or uploading pictures make sure you add your main (yet relevant) keywords into the ALT tags. Doing this helps you create unique ALT tags for your product images.

4. Use Rich Snippets
Rich Snippets are a kind of page mark-up. It offers additions bits of information under search results. Like ratings, reviews, votes, price, in stock or out of stock information. These rich snippets are HTML coded bits that are used to bait search engines. Sellers who use rich snippets increase their chances of getting clicks because these bits of information give searchers enough to understand what the search result is about before even clicking. Making it people more likely to click on your link.

5. Add Customer Reviews

Econsultancy claims around 61% of online consumers read reviews before making actual purchase decisions. Which states product reviews are essential for a major portion of consumers to make online purchases. From the SEO point of view, customer reviews mean more fresh content. And since search engines like Google like unique and new content, you can enjoy better ranking in search results. According to Internet Retailer, adding product reviews to your online store can shoot up conversion rates by 14 to 76 percent. To get constant reviews for your products, email or message customers the link to your review section.

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