Takeaways and Tips to Improve SEO

You’ve added a bunch of bells and whistles to your e-commerce site, but your plain-Jane competitor is selling more of the same items as you.

Why? The plain-Jane e-commerce site may not be as pretty to look at as your site, but it’s probably kicking your butt in search engine optimization (SEO).

What you do with your SEO may not be visible to the naked eye, but it’s picked up by the search engines. And the better you do SEO, the greater the chance a consumer will find your e-commerce site via Google, Yahoo, MSN and the rest of the search engines. And increased traffic equals more revenue.

Speaking at last month’s Internet Retailer conference in Boston, Marissa Colwell, director of media for online home decor merchant Improvement Direct, offered several SEO strategies.

Here’s are four of Colwell’s takeaways for SEO success:

  1. Don’t just guess when it comes to keyword research and selection – this is the foundation of the SEO process. Improvement Direct used Google Tools and Keyword Discovery, though there are plenty of free and paid tools available.
  2. The title tag is the most important keyword on a landing page, and unique title tags need to be used for each individual page to show search engines a distinction between other pages on your site. The title tag should be effective in describing the page’s content; it should also be short and informative.
  3. Take time to create meta tags. Consider the meta tag to be a marketing ad, and write a description that would interest you if it came up in a search result. But don’t use generic or unrelated terms, or cut and paste the entire content of the document into the meta tag.
  4. The way you label an image also can influence SEO. Be sure to use descriptive file names as opposed to “image1.jpg.” Store all images in a unique directory, and use commonly-supported file types such as JPG or GIF.

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