How To Rank On Page One With An E-commerce Website

How to rank on page one with an e-commerce website.

So, the one subject that everyone loves to a be an expert in. I’m going to cut to the chase here and that is, if you’re looking for a shortcut you’re going to be disappointed. From my experience I’ve tried both black hat and white hat techniques. In essence, the main aim of this article is to provide a sustainable SEO strategy.

Now, let’s start with Google. What is the primary business of the world’s most trusted search engine?

……

It’s to provide the user with the best results matching to the query entered.

What does this mean?

Well, if you managed to trick Google with your shitty website to be ranked up the top, it’s not in companies best interest to provide your website to the user. If you’ve ever stumbled upon some readings regarding SEO, you may of heard of the Penguin and Panda updates to Google’s search algorithm.

Wow. That was a lot.

Let me break it down for you. If you’re ranking page one today, you might not rank tomorrow. This is because Google is constantly updating their algorithm. For Google to survive day in and day out, its business is provide its user’s to the best website.

How do I keep up with Google’s algorithm?

You don’t. Let me introduce to you a strategy called content first. This strategy involves providing the user with best experience possible with your content.

There are two elements with this strategy that in my opinion are essential to the execution.

  • Provide the user with unique and valuable content. With ecommerce, many product descriptions are the same. This is especially true with product specifications. But that doesn’t mean you should give up being unique with your ecommerce product data. Here are a few additions you can add to your product descriptions to spruce up your listings. Brand information, box contents, warranty information, buy now pay later descriptions, VIDEOS, buying guides, external links, reviews (are a big plus), links to your own blogs, links to manuals, contact links and more which I can’t think of at the moment.

 

  • An extension to this is to provide lots of useful content. From my research, it appears Google favours websites with more words. Yes, this rule applies with a few caveats, but nonetheless, if you apply the first rule within the guidelines I mentioned then you should be fine. I guess what I’m trying to say, is don’t babble on about the same thing for eternity. Not only will Google notice this, but the user will go back to Google for another web page.

This leads me to my next point.

User experience is a huge issue when optimising for SEO.

If people love to use your website they will return. They’re going to search for your brand and click on your result when it appears against competitors.

But how do you achieve a good user experience?

There is a few ways, though I’ll explain this in a simple manner. In the retail and real world, if people aren’t buying from your website you usually:

A – watch their behaviour

B – ask questions.

Here are some solutions below:

A – They’re a few tools to use to help with potential buyers.

  • Google Analytics
  • Lucky Orange
  • Optimizley (an advanced solution for (A/B testing)

B – use an online chat or just ask questions via email, in person or phone.

With the digital space, it is important to hypothesize on a regular basis.This is because the landscape of online e-Commerce is forever changing due to consumer demands. An example of this is the buy now pay later schemes which have dramatically transformed payments with online purchases.

This is a simple example, though there are many factors that can’t be ignored.

With e-commerce, there is a problem that frequently re-occurs with novice and professional websites. It’s the simplicity of the search flow.

I don’t know what exact percentages are but many users go straight to your search bar when looking for products on your website. With a clean user interface and experience, the user should be able to find the products they want QUICK.  

The word quick is highlighted for a specific reason. In the world of nearly infinite goldfishes online (us humans), our attention span is low. The search bar is an essential first interaction and user’s are expecting more and more from websites these days. Here are a few tips below to lessen bounce rates for SEO and improve User Experience:

  • Instant results in search bar
  • Suggested results
  • Large enough to see (yes this needs to highlighted)
  • Even add a prompt in your search bar (eg: find everything here)
  • Also Ajax filtering once search results are loaded.

The search page is just as important (sorry – there is more work). Here you will need to make sure your data is super clean. If you’ve got rubbish data, for example, a horrible category tree than don’t be surprised if your getting pathetic sales results.

Again, because lists are awesome – here are some guidelines:

  • Provide a clear category tree data
  • Provide attribute data (eg: features)
  • Provide any relevant data may be necessary when a user searching for results
  • Instant search results are required (us goldfish don’t want to wait too long

My last point, is branding.

Branding is, in my opinion, an undervalued topic of SEO that gets ignored constantly. It’s pretty simple, if you’re brand is recognised in the search results over other companies even though you may be ranked lower, it will help with your CTR in the long run.

I’ve seen this work first hand, with a multi-channel strategy. It is important not to ignore any channel and to respect it’s user’s and systems.

With a multi-channel strategy via some proposed channels you can boost your brand’s recognition.

Here are the channels not to ignore:

  • Google AdWords
  • Google Shopping
  • Facebook
  • YouTube
  • Google Remarketing
  • Retail

All these combined will boost brand awareness and hopefully boost your sales. I’ll talk more later about how to use these channels to build an amazing sales funnel to work for you.

To conclude, don’t buy any crap from some SEO expert that is spilling out on the phone. They will try and sell you rubbish with a shortcut, but in reality, life doesn’t work this way.

I’ll end this blog with a saying in life, which applies to SEO.

What comes easy, goes easy.

 

Neto Review – A Full Overview Of The Platform

Before starting this Neto review, I would like to mention the Neto partner program.

I’m in no affiliated with Neto, however as I’ve learned in the past, some of those who are recommending Neto, is Neto partners. The kickbacks for referring clients to Neto are pretty enticing so please do your research.

Now if you’re unaware, I was involved with the initial launch of Amazon Australia Marketplace through one of my contracted jobs. We decided to give Neto a good old crack, as they were one the first to supply an Amazon Australia integration. Initially, it was great to use, but from what I was soon discovering development from the Neto team is extremely slow. Issues that occurred were simple fixes that should have been addressed immediately and complex problems which takes months to fix (completely understandable).

An example of a simple error not fixed with 6 months of use was:

• If the address supplied by the customer was filled in-correctly (eg: postcode wrong) the eparcel integration (Aus Post) would simply fail. The most annoying problem was that the Amazon integration by Neto would not signal that this error occurred, so you would have to guess if the address is wrong or correct.

This error, was exceptionally annoying and was notified to the team numerous times. However, over a 6 month period, this was never fixed!

I can’t say I’ve experienced this before for a software company.

As a result, we have since moved to another platform, for half the price with better software (Amazon integration article soon to come).

Soooo… If you’re not using Amazon you will be pleased to know, Neto is actually very sufficient in some key Areas. One those areas is the eBay Australia integration, which has an array of nifty features.

Updating listings, templates and managing multiple ebay stores is seamless. But be ready to jump through hurdles, as the data executed needs to be clean, otherwise numerous errors will occur (this needs to occur on any platform).


Here is a list of Neto’s best ebay features.

– Managing multiple stores, through product listings areas
– Easily change design templates
– Shiping rules pulled via eBay business policies (excellent for bulky items)
– Ability to allocate “Picture 10″ as an ebay Image. This allows for specific ebay images.
– Ability to add K-TYPE filtering to vehicle product categories
– Easy Image uploading (upload via the SKU number)
– Automatic pushed shipping information to ebay (including tracking). This also works with 3rd party integration (StarShipIT)


In short summary, Neto is good for ebay (and I really love it) but have you ever noticed, many businesses utilizing Neto are very focused on eBay revenue streams. This is my opinion because Neto is a one trick pony, eBay Australia.

Here is where my real issues with Neto start and why I don’t recommend the platform to use as your main front online.  

During my time using Neto I’ve been extremely baffled as to how slow some of the Neto websites load. It’s really bad!

Resentment of their web experience also doesn’t stop on the general website speed as there filtering is also immensely slow, to makes matters worse. If you know anything about E-commerce websites, AJAX filtering (this allows results to be shown without loading a new page) was introduced to assist customers to find their products fast (Which is a very important conversion factor).

This is common practice on many popular websites to support quick filtering and if you don’t believe me, visit the biggest websites in the country.

I’ve enquired about this feature numerous times and the answer I constantly get is that it is not possible for the moment and it is not in their “Roadmap”

So if you really want features built, don’t count your life on it  

If you would like to see a head to head example of Neto and another equivalent service, check out Shopify. AJAX filtering is available on third-party plugins and is SUPER SUPER FAST – it’s amazing.

Whether you see this as a positive or minus is up to you. Neto is utilising a BASE/Tag framework infrastructure. This is what is referred to as SASS infrastructure, which in Lehmans to terms is like renting a house, rather than owning it. When utilizing a SASS platform, your control over the software is limited. If you’re running 1000s or even 100s of SKUS, with many attributes an Open Source framework is most likely better suited.

If you are going to be running a website with complex parts and attributes, I would strongly recommend staying away from a SASS platform. If you’re sure you want to go on a SASS, you must find a platform that is well supported by developers all over the world. This makes for competitive offerings and a large knowledge base. This is essential when finding a platform with custom requirements.

Neto is extremely limited with developer support. Majority of the apps offered are built by themselves and are lucky to provide 100 options. In the reality of e-commerce this is pathetic. The more options and competition the better for the end user. What you will also find, is their options can easily add up in price.  

Lastly, shipping out with Neto, can be a big big problem. Not only myself but others had issues, shipping out with Australia Post.

The Neto user interface is absolute rubbish. I’m not joking. It’s utter crap.

This shows in the dispatch process as its complicated and slow.  Thankfully, there is a fix to this. I’ve implemented both Ready to Ship or StarShipIT via different platforms making the process seamless.

THANK GOD!!!

Simply, don’t use their solution as it takes longer to use and cost the same (depending on volumes)

To summarise this Neto review, the platform is good.

However, as with any e-commerce software it depends on its use that will dictate your decision. If you want to drive the majority of your sales via eBay, then go full stick with Neto.

But please, if you going to run 1000s of SKUS, with complicated data attached, please stay away or think about Neto carefully. I would recommend with confidence Shopify over Neto, if you’re after a SASS solution. If you want to own or have full control through an Open Source platform my best options for you would be Open Cart, Woo Commerce & Magento. These platforms have strong communities with great support.

As I mentioned with Neto, there are many fundamental problems that exist with the platform. I’ve had many conversations with the staff attempting to resolve issues whilst pulling my hair out. If you go with Neto, yes it can be a good platform but be prepared for simple errors to occur.

If you have any questions about thie Neto review or anything e-commerce related, feel free to email and i’ll assist with your query.