101 Ways Optimize Online Store


 

Optimize Your Store First

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and Human Visitor Optimization are very important for your online store. If you do not work on the SEO of your store, search engines will not be able to find you. Customers do use the search engine to look for the products they want and if the search engines do not find you, chances are that your customers will not be able to find you too.

Before you start promoting your online stores, make sure that your store is ready for marketing. There is no point doing all the promotion when your store is not ready. Customers do not like to visit a store when it is still under construction and it looks unprofessional. Here are a few lists of things to make sure that you are ready.

Add products titles and products descriptions to your products

Give a product title and a product description for every product in your store. Your customers will want to know what you are selling and the details about your products. Include information like color, sizes, dimensions, material and even how to use when you are describing your products.

Have pictures of real models using your products

This is a good way of letting your customers have a feel of what it is like wearing, using your products, especially when you are selling apparels & accessories. It also gives your customers an idea the size, how to mix and match and use your products.

Create a “Contact us” page for your store

Customers will want to email or speak to the owner of your shop for reasons. They might want to ask if you can personalization a design, ask for discount for a bulk purchase, cash on delivery, feedback on your product, ask for you permission to put a link to your shop on their blog and many more.

Create a sitemap for your store

A sitemap is a page that shows all the links available. If your customer cannot find a page, they could use a sitemap to search for the page that they want.

Create a “Thank You for your purchase page” for your store

After your customers have checked out, you should lead your customer to a “Thank you for your purchase” page so that your customers will be sure that their orders have gone through. This thank you page is also great for newsletter subscription and special discount coupons for future buys. Since your customer has already agreed to place an order with you by providing their personal information, your customers will feel more comfortable subscribing to your newsletters. You can get your customers to introduce some of their friends to your online stores by offering special discount codes just for their friends.

Add meta-tags and keywords to your store

Meta-tags descriptions and keywords are very important on all websites. Although some major search engines claim that they are ignoring meta tags and their descriptions, some smaller search engines still depend on them.

Another reason why you should not ignore them is that there are a lot of websites that allow you to submit your shop will search for these meta tags and their descriptions in your website coding. Some classified allows you to enter a website address and after clicking a button, they will automatic fill in your site name and descriptions in their form for you. Some modules in Squidoo does that as well. It can save you lots of time without typing these descriptions over and over again.

Do not spam your meta tags and descriptions but remember to put important keywords on them. Here is an example of where you should put your meta tags and description of your website. It is found on top of your website coding.

EXAMPLE PICTURE!

Request testimonials from your customers

Create a testimonial page on your store. Ask your customers for permission to publish their comments on your testimonial page. Reward them with special discount coupons if they allow you to use their real names. A testimonial page will give your potential customers more confidence with your products and service.

Create a photo gallery page showing your customers using or wearing your products

Get your customers to send in pictures of them using or wearing your products. Get permission from them to use their pictures. Put some of these photos on your shop. When you have collected lots of photos from your customers, put them in photo image hosting sites such as Flickr. Tag these photos with proper keywords in these photo image hosting sites so that you can drive more visitors to your shops.

Customize your 404 error page

If you are using the default 404 error page, it will mean that your customer have only 2 choices when they reach a non existence page of your site. They will either click the “back” button, continue to be confused where they want to go, or they will just give up and close your page. Your visitor might have arrived to your non existence site from an exterior link and if they choose to click the “back” button, they will not be able to visit your site at all.

Tell your customer that they are lost or have reached a non existence page of your site. Provide them a simple sitemap of your shop or website so that they can decide where they want to go to get the information they need.

Offer different mode of payment

Not everyone own a credit card and love paypal. The best method is to offer a few payment option in your online shop. Below is a list of payment option you can consider to offer in your online shop.
Paypal
PayPal is the safer, easier way to pay and get paid online. The service allows anyone to pay in any way they prefer, including through credit cards, bank accounts, buyer credit or account balances, without sharing financial information.
WorldPay – Internet Payment Solutions for Credit and Debit Card Processing by the World’s Leading Payment Service Provider.
Internet Payment Solutions for Credit and Debit Card Processing by the World’s Leading Payment Service Provider.
Google Checkout
Google Checkout is a fast, secure checkout process that helps increase sales by bringing you more customers and allowing them to buy from you quickly and easily with a single login.

Offer other languages in your store

This is good to have if you are selling your products worldwide. Not everybody understands English. Customers will also find your site a much friendlier site to surf if you speak their language. This is important especially when a non English speaking customer is trying to understand your shipping rates and ordering procedure.

Include a currency convertor in your store

This is a good to have if you are selling your products worldwide. It is really useful if you are accepting different currency.

Place your phone number on your store

Allow customers to order your products by calling you. Some customers are just not comfortable ordering online especially when they have not tried doing that before. Speaking to a real person makes them feel that it is a real business or retail shop. Some customers might want to ask you some questions on your products that they cannot find on your website. It gives you a good chance to talk direct to your customers and understand their wants from their point of view. You might even find ways to improve what you have done through talking to them.

If you are not comfortable with customers who might call you in the middle of the night, get a spare phone with another phone number as your business phone. You can put in the time range that your customers can call you on your websites. After the specify time, you can choose to switch off your phone.

Add your photo, your staff photos or your brick and mortar storefront to your store

This is to give your customer more confident and trust that your online shop is a real shop. It will be even better if you can install a live video on your brick and mortar shop or your office and let your online customers see your operation from your website or online shop.

Include a “Tell a friend” form on your product page

This is an opportunity for your store visitor to introduce another customer to you. And the best of all, your visitors are doing it for you for free.

Add a poll to your store

Try to get your visitors to be more interactive on your site. Everyone love to have their opinion hear. You can get free polls from the list below. All you have to do is choose the type of poll you want, copy and paste the code on your website.
Pollhost.com – Get a free poll for your website.
Pollhost offers completely free website polls. Visit now to instantly create a free poll for your website or blog.
Vizu: Free Web Polls for your Blog, MySpace or Facebook page. Opinion Polls and Affordable Market Research.
Create a free web poll and put it on your blog, MySpace, Facebook or other social page. Also try Vizu Answers for opinion polls and affordable market research.

Create a page and archive all your old polls in your store

Visitors love polls. Sometime they love poll so much that they want to be interview again and again. Why not make use of this opportunities to find out more from your customers?

Offer special discount coupons for customer’s next purchase when they check out from your store

You can send your discount coupons to your customer’s email or discount coupon can appear on the page when the customers have completed their purchase. This is to encourage your customers to shop on your store again or pass the discount coupons to their friends or family members.

Get someone to proof read your store for spelling and grammar mistake

Be professional with your store. Spelling and grammar mistake gives very bad impression of your websites and products. Badly design stores with broken English give an impression to customers that the sale service will be just as bad. Online shoppers are careful about giving away their credit cards numbers or their money because there are spam everywhere.

Check and delete any broken links

Search engines and customers do not like broken links. Broken links give a feeling that you have not update your website and store for a long time and it gives an impression that you are not doing your work.

Do not uses frame on your online store

Search engines cannot read what is inside your frame. If you are using frame on your websites, it will appear that there is no keywords on your site. Search engine will have no idea about you are trying to do on your site.

Check that your online store work and display correctly on all kinds of browsers

There are so many types of browsers you can use to surf the web. Some examples are Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, Opera and many more. If you are not the one designing for your store, get your designer to test run your store on all the available browsers. Check how you stores and website appear on different resolution as well. You do not want to lose any customers just because your site appears awful on their browser.
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