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How To Avoid 'Crash And Burn' In Your Ecommerce Website

Nov 3, 2007
We've all seen sites that shoot to the top, almost as if by magic. They start receiving 500 000 hits a month, then a week, then a day. Most ecommerce businesses watch in envy as these gurus make vast amounts of money. Then, something happens and they slip. Their page rank drops, and when we check our keywords, they no longer dominate the front page.

Most of the time the reason for an ecommerce web site losing its rank and hits is based on one of the following ten mistakes:

#1: A 'Wiz' SEO Company Promised Them Even More

We've all seen the emails promising thousands of hits. As a website receives more hits and higher page rank, it attracts more savvy SEO marketers. A website that receives more than 2 million hits a year, and has a page rank of PR4 or higher, is a prime target for SEO marketing companies.

The trap lies in the fact that 'one size does not fit all ecommerce websites.' If your site is doing well, it is usually because you are doing something the experts overlooked. In many cases, SEO companies can dramatically increase a website's performance - for 2 to 4 months. Then, the downward spiral starts. Everything that once worked is gone, the 'flash in the pan' tricks are wearing out and the search engine robots lose interest.

In the end, the business owner spends $2000 - $5000 for a few months of glory, and then sudden death.

#2: Changing Focus

This is the most common mistake. The ecommerce business owner reads a SEO marketing article that talks about content or keywords, or finding a niche and focusing on it. Then, before taking a good hard look at their website's statistics they start making changes. The first mistake in this category is removing the page that receives 20 000 hits a day because it is an old fashion style of landing page, or it just doesn't match the theme of the new site. The second mistake is making all 'new' content that has not been visited by the search engine robots, so there is nothing to send visitors too.

Other mistakes in this category involve ending up with dead links. Every page that is deleted from a website should be deleted by hand from the company's Google Analytic's account. The best way to prevent this problem is by making the new website built on the old one. Link both sites together through a secondary or third page and let them 'float.' After a few months when the new site has a 'page rank' and is receiving hits, then bring it forward and push the old site back. But instead of deleting the old site, just change the navigation bars so they send visitors to the new pages. This way, the good landing pages are preserved, and the old pages are directing people to the new site.

One thing that a webmaster can also do is leave the URL's for each page in-tact, and just change the content. This should be done every 3 months, even if the change is minor, so search engine robots see that the site is not abandoned.

Change #3 Watch Both Your Site and Your Competitor's Site

Very few ecommerce shopping cart owners keep track of what the competition is doing, and 'harvesting' the tips and tricks that work, or avoid their catastrophes

It is also important to watch your website's analytics. Pages receiving hits need to be left alone. Pages that are ignored need to be spiced up, or linked better. And, the top exit pages need to be rewritten to keep people's interested.
About the Author
Mark Walters is a third generation entrepreneur and author. He offers free training and investing videos designed to speed you towards financial independence http://www.cashflowinstitute.com/videosignup.htm
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