The 50 Best Tips
— Shari Altman, Altman Dedicated Direct, “What Sells Where?” October, Catalog Success
✱ Grow your search term list.
Test three to 10 times as many distinct keywords as there are pages on your site. If you carry, say, 5,000 SKUs, test between 15,000 and 50,000 terms. Assign tracking codes to gauge sales and costs at the keyword level.
— Alan Rimm-Kaufman, Rimm-Kaufman Group, E-commerce Insights column, “Winning at Paid Search ’07,” January, Catalog Success
✱ How Cabela’s tests its SEO.
The outdoor sporting-goods cataloger tracks its search engine optimization program performance by comparing, week to week, the percentage of keywords ranked in Google’s top four, along with the percentage in the top 10. The keyword sample includes 90 product-specific (“tail”) keywords and nearly 2,000 general keywords.
— Stephan Spencer, Netconcepts, “SEO Testing: How to Go All Out,” April, Catalog Success
✱ Use the first three pages rule.
Compare paid campaign keyword strategies with natural search results for the same words. If they’re not coming up on the first three pages of a search engine based on natural search, focus on improving ranking of those nonranking terms.
— iCrossing, “Study Finds Integrating Paid and Natural Search Significantly Boosts Online Performance,” April 17, Catalog Success Idea Factory
✱ Avoid ads on your site.
If your conversion path is nothing but a series of ads linked together, you’ll likely lose your audience early on — probably at screen one or two. Use your conversion path as a forum to earn consumers’ trust and respect, not as a medium to bombard them with an advertisement at every possible moment.
— Bronto Software, “Six Ways to Succeed — Post-click,” Aug. 28, Catalog Success Idea Factory
✱ Make it easy for consumers.
Consumers want to quickly find what they need. In fact, Forrester Research says nearly half of people who visit a landing page leave within eight seconds. So, your landing page needs to connect buyers with their product without making them have to search or wait for it. With this in mind, don’t ask customers to fill anything out when they get to the landing page. Make them visual with a limited amount of text, particularly for retail stores. Have product selections update dynamically based on factors such as availability, new additions, sale items, etc.