E-commerce is a cut throat business. You have to arm yourself with the proper know-how and the tools to make your site a cut above the rest. Each day, more and more sites are clambering to optimize their rankings in websites and if you lose your guard, you may just get trampled on and be left in the abyss filled with so many failed e-commerce sites. Continue reading “Search Engine Optimization And Why You Gotta Use It”
Google will look at the traffic that a document gets and changes to that traffic over time. It will also consider seasonal, daily or other timely changes to see if a document receives more traffic at these times and is therefore more relevant at these times. Any significant drop in traffic may indicate that a document is stale. Google may also consider ‘advertising traffic’ separately.
Is your primary goal in a search engine promotion campaign to increase overall traffic or to increase sales? The determination of your success will depend on your goals.
You will need to have the following statistics or metrics available to analyze your success:
- How many unique visitors you get each week
- The specific search engines that are sending you traffic
- How many hits each search engine is sending you
- The keywords people use to find your site
- What your ranks are for certain keyword phrases
- Sales per week
In order to get the above information you will need a traffic analyzer that will report your site statistics. We recommend the free Google Analytics.
You will also need to be able to integrate your site statistics with your sales/week. You can use Microsoft Excel for this purpose. You can transfer some of the information from Advanced Logger into an Excel file that also contains your average sales/day over a week. This will give you some revealing statistics about the relationships between search engines, visitors, and sales.
Over a period of time, you will be able to see the emerging relationships between keywords, search engines and sales. Analyzing these relationships will show you where you need to improve your site.
Track visitors with a traffic analyzer
A unique visitor is a person that visits your site for the first time. Some statistical reporting programs will tell you unique visitors per 24 hour period. This means, if the visitor returns the next day, they are counted again as a unique visitor, even if they have already been to your site.
When you start to analyze the data, you will be exposed to a lot of numbers. Make sure that you know the difference between the unique visitor and total hits on your site. Total hits can be anything from hits on every page to hits on every page and every graphic (total accesses).
You will need to know the number of unique visitors in order to track your sales success.
Simple site statistics usually provided by your host will tell you how many unique visitors your site is
Track Search Engines with a traffic analyzer
Depending on your site statistics program, you may also be able to see which search engines are referring traffic to your site. Google Analytics will provide graphical charts to represent site traffic.
Don’t expect to get every page ranked in every engine. Some search engines just naturally pick up more pages than others. Search engines are always in a competition for who has the biggest database of web pages. You may find that one search engine may be picking up and ranking almost every page of your site, while another engine only likes your home page. It is also dependent on the popularity of the specific search engine.
We’ve dealt with the statistics for many web sites over many years. We believe that Google sends the most traffic. But that doesn’t mean that Google always sends the most quality traffic. Quality traffic (traffic that produces sales) can vary by search engine. One important variable would be the product.
For instance, traffic from MSN may bring many sales for your product, whereas traffic from Google may yield you less sales per unique visitor.
You will need to look at your statistics over many months to determine which engines are bringing you sales and which keywords are producing traffic and sales for your specific product.
Track keywords with a traffic analyzer and a ranking report
Again, an advanced program will be very useful to help you accurately track the ranks of specific keyword phrases in the engines. You’ll need to get the free version of WebCEO which will provide you with plenty more analytical tools as well.
When you start getting a good amount of traffic (at least 500 unique visitors per week) you will start to understand that the keyword phrases people use are wide and varied. You will notice that you’re getting traffic from search engines on phrases that you never thought of. The essence of a good search engine promotion campaign is that you see a nice spread of traffic from ALL engines and a
nice spread of keyword phrases.
Some equations that may help you analyze traffic
Percent Increase of Unique Visitors:
- UVB = unique visitors before a promotion campaign. They should be over a specific period of time, like 4 weeks.
- UVA = unique visitors after or during a promotion campaign. This should be over the same period of time as UVB – 4 weeks.
- UVA – UVB = difference
- Difference/UVA = percent of visitor increase
Percent Increase of Hits from Search Engine(s):
- HB = hits from search engine(s) before a campaign over specific time
- HA = hits from search engines after a campaign over same time period as HB
- HA – HB = difference
- Difference/HA = percent increase of hits from search engine(s)
Percent increase in sales:
Sales/Unique Visitors = percent of sales/visitors
On the same day of each week (or month) you should calculate your sales/unique visitor ratio. This will tell you if your promotion campaigns are increasing sales, not just visitors. (We’ll venture to say that 1% is a good ratio. That is one sale per 100 visitors. If you see anything over 1%, you should examine the campaign and try to replicate it in any way possible.)
Anchor text is the clickable text that is associated with a link. Google looks at the anchor text,
freshness of the anchor text and changes to the anchor text over time.
- If there is a disparity between the anchor text and the document that it links to, possibly due to changes in domain ownership, Google could look at the time this occurred and ignore all the valuable links to your document prior to this event.
- Let people link to you with appropriate anchor text.
Unique Words, Bigrams, Phrases in Anchor Text
Google analyses the unique words, bigrams (pairs of letters, words or syllables) and phrases in anchor text for a document.
- Google analyzes graphs of unique words, bigrams, and phrases in anchor text to see if this information is real. Results that are created artificially would show spiky graphs whilst natural
data would show organic graphs.
- Don’t try and SPAM the search engine using unscrupulous link trading or search companies as
you could get black-listed and not recover from a lowered ranking.
3. Query Analysis – Check the Search Keywords
Google analyses the volume and kind of searches that users make through the search engine. It analyses these results over time and documents associated with the fastest growing keyword searches are ranked higher as they could indicate a hot topic or breaking news story. Google also looks at search terms and records whether a search term should produce a consistent set of results or whether searches like ‘London Software Development’ should produce a different set of results every year.
- If a document appears highly in the search results for a discordant set of search results, then it may be considered as SPAM and ranked lower as it is unlikely for one document to be a good source for a number of different topics.
- Each document should be optimized and contain information related to a few searched for keywords. If you try and put all the keywords into one document then you are unlikely to rank very highly and are much more likely to be considered as search engine SPAM.
So, before you begin to rewrite the content of your web page to increase or decrease keyword frequency, you must find the right keywords.
There are several ways to find keywords and you should strive to try all of these strategies:
- Brainstorm. Come up with at least 20 keywords or keyword phrases that you think people might type into a search engine in order to find your web pages. Use your knowledge about your industry, but try to remember to think like people that are looking for the types of products and services that you are offering.
- Ask other people. Ask business people and friends what they would type into a search if they were looking for your page or site. It is especially helpful to get the opinions of people outside of your industry, people that know little about your products and services.
- Use the search engines. Go to search engines and look for pages with content similar to your own. When you get to your competitor’s sites, look at their source code. (Place your cursor on the page, click your right mouse button and choose “view source.”) Check out the phrases they are using in the keyword meta tags (if they have them). If you find some new keywords,
be sure to write them down.
- Use a “keyword suggestion tool” such as this free one from Google AdWords.
1. Document Creation Date
The document inception/creation date is the date the document was created, first indexed or linked to or the first registration date of the domain. The inception date is used to determine the rate of growth of links to a document. For example, a document with yesterday’s inception date with 10 links to it could be scored higher than a document with an inception date of 10 years ago and a 100 links to it. For some searches that are made on a search engine, an older document may be more favorable than a newer document therefore older documents may be ranked higher and vice-versa.
Additionally to this, proper navigation allows search engine spiders to follow your links and put your pages into their database. People need to find their way around your site, as well. Sometimes, organization is what distinguishes a high quality site from a loser. A well designed navigational system will have a positive impact on search engine optimization.
- Chart the link growth to see if there is a natural growth. A spiky growth could indicate SPAM.
- Have a structured link building program
Since the beginning of the current year rights owners have asked the search giant to remove over 100 million links to “pirate” websites. This figure is already double the number Google processed for the whole last year. Google is currently processing an average of 15 million “pirate” links per month. Although this number is leveling off, the rights owners aren’t satisfied yet.
Thus far, Google has been required to delete more than 105,300,000 links to infringing websites, and most of them don’t appear in search results anymore.
As for the websites for which the company received the most takedown notices, the file-hosting search engine FilesTube tops the rankings with almost 6,000,000 URLs. Another “rogue” website is Torrentz.eu with over 2,500,000 URLs, followed by Rapidgator.net with more than 2,000,000 links. The surprising fact is that infamous The Pirate Bay didn’t show up in the top 20. Maybe this is because it changed domain names, or maybe because it hosts just 2,000,000 magnet links on the website.
Talking about the reporting groups, we can see that the Recording Industry Association of America is one of the most active senders of DMCA takedown requests. The anti-piracy outfit has sent takedown requests for over 26 million URLs within the last year and half. Despite the fact that Google responds swiftly, the entertainment industry doesn’t believe the takedowns are efficient. This is why it now asks the search giant to ban entire domains from its search results.
On the one side, the company is satisfied with the way things are going, saying that it has faith in the general workings of the DMCA takedown procedure. The only problem with the massive number of takedowns is that thousands of links are taken down in error – for example, Microsoft recently asked to remove its very own website from the search results.
In the meantime, the industry experts note that it would be interesting to see how the tension between the search engine and the rights owners develops over time.
Is it laziness? Is it narrow or closed mindedness? Is it lack of direction?
Maybe I’m just lucky. I stumbled upon the right information online early in my online business to avoid this pitfall…
For some reason, people think when you have a website, there is only one way to promote them and make money. And that’s why they will ultimately fall someday!
Gee, I get all this Google traffic and make some good money… And then one day Google changes something in their Algorithm and their business is toast…
I know it’s cliche, but don’t put all your eggs in the Google basket. Not even just Google… but search engines in general.
The reason I brought this up today is because someone called anything other than SEO (Search Engine Optimization) a fad… Wow.!
The reason he said that is because I said that Webmaster’s have to evolve and think outside to the Search Engine box.
And I guess there are types of websites that thrive in the Search Engine environment or don’t care if they make money… and that’s fine. But if you want to make a living online and make some money, you have to expand your horizons.
The things I was suggesting are not fads. These are techniques and ideas the are tried-and-true methods that have been used for years to make a lot of people a lot of money…
People (that I know) have made millions of dollars online without ever giving Search Engines… and even Pay Per Click advertising… any attention at all. They don’t care. They don’t need them.
I’m not going to get into all the different ways you can make money or get traffic without search engines in this one post, but they are out there…
Don’t think I’m saying I don’t think search engines aren’t a good way to get free traffic. They are! At the very least though, go after multiple engines… don’t get stuck on Google…
I think long term. There are things you MUST do to protect your long term objectives.
Just worrying about SEO isn’t going to secure that.