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Search Engine Optimization For Ecommerce

Dec 5, 2007
Ecommerce business owners are bombarded with information telling them how to optimize their website, and that they need to pay attention to keywords and optimization, but most webmasters do not understand what the information means.

SEO tactics have not changed much in the last decade, but Google changes the rules approximately once every year. This means that the rules you read about keyword density, linking, etc. may be out of date within a year. Optimization is not about ranking high on search engines. Optimization is about making a website and shopping cart easy for search engines to 'read'. Or, in technical terms, make it easy for their robots and spiders to search.

Title Tags

The first mistake is usually in the title tags. This is not a place to keyword load the site, nor is it the place to give a non committal title of the business or company name. Instead, it should clearly explain what the business does, their target, and their focus.

The title tag needs to be small, about 5 words. It should also include the primary keyword 'phrase.' It is also important to use the plural form whenever possible.

Title Examples:
Buy Cars in Ohio
Online Technical Institutes
Online Shopping and Auctions

Meta Description Tags

There are no meta tag search engines now. Today, meta tags are used to help rank websites and manage AdWord programs. They are also used as teasers on searches. This should be no more than 20 words, and should be created from complete sentences that include a keyword phrase.

Meta Tags

Meta tags should be phrases that people type in when they are searching for your website. Google now ignores meta tags, but Yahoo still gives them importance. The list of meta tags should be no more than 250 characters, including commas, and be in order of relevance and importance. Do not repeat one work more than 3 times in the keyword phrases.

Most people think this is a list of words that are relevant to a website. This is not true. Writing a list of words will not benefit a website: novel, how to, write, published, publisher, submit, prose. Writing a list of phrases will benefit the website: how to write a novel, how to get published, find a publisher, submit a novel to a publisher, improve your prose. Put the most important phrases first.

Secondary & Parked Domains

The company may be called www.ajax-auctions.com, but that should not be the domain name, at least, it shouldn't be the only domain name. Domain names should include keywords: www.Online-Auction-Shopping.com. The actual domain must be short www.ebay.com and easy to follow.

However, parked domains under it and secondary domains should be keyword heavy.

Examples of parked domains on the main domain of www.oas.com
www.online-shopping.oas.com
www.christmas-gifts.oas.com
www.buy-books.oas.com

This is one way of dramatically increasing the keywords and keyword relevance. Using five domain names and creating 10 - 50 sub domains for each one will dramatically increase a website's exposure.

Inline links

Most websites make their biggest SEOP mistakes when creating the links for their site. We have all see sites with the following links: home, view, read more, go to, next, buy now, learn more.

These tags damage SEO in two ways. Each one can be converted to a keyword anchored link: shopping home, more shoes, more about shopping, continue shopping, more cameras, buy a camera, compare cameras.

Inbound Links

Creating inbound links is more important than optimizing a website. Hiring a design company to optimize a website will involve little more than creating a site that follows the rules in this article, and downloads faster than normal. In most cases, what you pay for form a design company is a total waste of time.

Creating inbound links is easy. Just follow from forums, blogs, other websites, directories, search engines, and social networking lenses like youtube, myspace, and squidoo.

Optimizing the Website

An ecommerce site needs to worry more about links and tags than it does to worry about speed. By default, shopping carts and ecommerce sites are difficult to code well. They have extensive link bars, affiliate codes, and shopping carts. This type of code makes the site almost impossible to make 'clean.' That is why the SEO tactics for websites and content management systems do not apply to shopping carts.
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 at http://www.CashFlowInstitute.com
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