New tricks for Old Pueblo

New tricks for Old Pueblo

December 7th, 2008

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Originally published in Multichannel Merchant

In this article on Multichannel Merchant, Netconcepts founder and President Stephan Spencer sits down with Amy Africa to review Old Pueblo Traders, an eCommerce clothing site. Stephan’s contribution discusses key concepts in SEO like this one:

In my brief tour of Oldpueblotraders.com, I found plenty of opportunities for major traffic gains through search engine optimization. The first one became immediately obvious as I was loading the home page. Directing my Web browser to load http://www.oldpueblotraders.com/, I was immediately redirected to http://www.oldpueblotraders.com/pagebuilder/.

Unfortunately, the type of redirect used was a temporary one (302) instead of a permanent one (301). I discovered this through the use of a server header checker (http://www.webrankinfo.com/english/tools/server-header.php) A 301 redirect passes PageRank and link popularity to the destination URL, whereas a 302 redirect does not. Luckily, this is an easy thing to fix.

For more about this eCommerce website audit, visit the original article on Multichannel Merchant here.

SEO Report Card: Pinkorpunk.com

April 2nd, 2008

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Originally published in Practical eCommerce

In this edition of the SEO report card, Jeff Muendel reviews eCommerce site pinkorpunk.com. This niche eCommerce site sells accessories that (you guessed it) are either pink or punk. This website audit is especially helpful for other new eCommerce sites, since pinkorpunk.com launched quite recently. Here’s a little bit about what Jeff has to say about this unique boutique.

Pinkorpunk.com is a fairly new website, which may partially explain its PageRank of 0. But, the other factor in the ranking is the site’s small number of inbound links. Yahoo! sees 45 links from outside sites while Google doesn’t list any at all. Inbound links translate to PageRank, and higher PageRank translates to better search engine results. This site, with its vibrant content, should have no problem garnering links! A linking campaign is in order here. Research online directories and get listed in those that still have decent PageRank (many have been recently demoted by Google in that regard). A blog is also in order, especially with such hip content. Online press should be a target as well, as should social media avenues like MySpace, Flickr and Facebook.

For more about this niche eCommerce store, visit the Practical eCommerce website audit here.

Being Off-Topic, Off-Message, or Off-Brand Can Be Good For Your SEO!

March 20th, 2008

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Originally published in Search Engine Land

Ok, perhaps I’m being a bit provocative here, but sometimes it’s the off-topic, off-message, or off-brand content that earns you the most valuable links—links that you wouldn’t have otherwise gotten. Those links can really pay the bills, in terms of the extra search traffic and resulting sales. The brand police within your company may pitch a fit, but heck, it’ll be worth it! Here’s how it’s done:

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SEO Report Card: Seenon.com

March 10th, 2008

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Originally published in Practical eCommerce

In this month’s edition of the SEO Report Card on Practical eCommerce, Netconcepts Jeff Muendel takes an in-depth look at Seenon.com, a celebrity fashion site. From home page content to what Jeff calls “an attractive and aggressive design,” this is a good website audit to read for the trendy and stylish.

This month’s report card website is Seenon.com, an ecommerce site that tracks the fashion tendencies of the famous and sells those garments and accoutrements to interested consumers. The site is pleasant to the eye and has an exciting, almost urgent feel to it, but how does it do in terms of search engine optimization? Not bad at all actually, and to that end, I thought it would serve as a good example of attractive and aggressive design that does not come at the expense of SEO.

For more about this fashion site web audit, visit Practical eCommerce here.

Ecommerce Blogging: Who, What And When

March 5th, 2008

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Originally published in Practical eCommerce

If you’ve even remotely considered adding a blog for your eCommerce site, then this article is for you. In this article originally featured on Practical eCommerce, Jeff Muendel helps eCommerce business owners design a strategy behind blogging.

A focused, well-written blog can get readers hooked on the blog and promote repeat visits to the website or garner subscriptions via RSS feeds and email newsletters. These recurring communications will help to tie potential customers to your site, encourage natural link building and increase repeat visits. Journalists are also more likely to follow a blog or subscribe via RSS than to visit the corporate site repeatedly. So, several avenues of search optimization and online marketing can be addressed with a single blog entity.

From the SEO benefits of business blogging to how it can help your customers, Jeff covers the basics of “who, what and when” of blogging. Read the full article at Practical eCommerce here.

How to Get on Google Maps Without an Address

February 11th, 2008

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Originally published in Search Engine Land

One of the top issues in delivering up local search results in a map-based format is what to do with businesses which have no street address. During the SMX Local & Mobile conference back in October, Dick Larkin asked Google Earth VP Michael Jones a question about this very thing: "What should we recommend to local businesses which do not have a local street address—how do they get into Google Maps search results?" Michael’s answer was surprising. I’ll give you his answer in a moment.

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SEO Report Card: agoodyarn.net

February 6th, 2008

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Originally published in Practical eCommerce

In this SEO report card on Practical eCommerce, Jeff Muendel, Search Analyst for Netconcepts, writes a full review of an all-about-yarn ecommerce store recommending that they redesign the site to be more search-friendly.

Jeff’s expertise begins with a critique of their home page:

I always harp on having a sitemap linked to the home page, and while some sites need it less than others, Agoodyarn.net could benefit from one almost immediately. A sitemap, which is a page that has links to all the major categories an subcategories of a web page, helps search engines through all the sections of a site. It can also be a shopping asset for customers. Almost all of the textual content on the home page is set as link text. Not only does this water down the keyword promotion that the links might garner, but itâ??s also just plain spammy. While it may not be the webmasterâ??s intent, this is a form of link stuffing, and it is frowned upon by search engines. The siteâ??s title and logo text, â??Fine yarn, classic patterns and odd notions,â?? are not textual but graphical, and therefore invisible to the search engines.

Be sure to read the full article for how simple fixes and a savvy re-design of their eCommerce site can boost this yarn retail store’s website and their overall SEO.

SEO Report Card: Juvieshop.com

January 7th, 2008

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Originally published in Practical eCommerce

The site focuses on hip, modern and stylish adolescent clothes for tweens (ages 7-12). Juvieshop.com is just over one-year-old and the site has built a PageRank of 3 for its homepage. Its theme is wholesome and the site is pleasant to the eye.

Jeff Muendel, Search Analyst for Netconcepts, covers a hip site that is targeted toward a specific age group in this website audit.

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Adventures in Searchandising Part 3

January 2nd, 2008

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Originally published in ClickZ

In part one of this series about searchandising, PJ defined this term to set the stage for what this innovative concept is, how the search engines and online customers respond to it, and what retailers can do about it. Part Two described the effect of guided navigation and extreme pagination on the search engines.

As the finale of this three part series on searchandising, PJ Fusco offers her recommendations on how:

…you can enhance the contextual relevancy of critical category pages within a complex database-driven Web site by understanding what keywords and phrases drive your revenue. But you still need to contend with that wonky pagination scheme that’s killing your crawl equity.

For more expert advice from PJ, lead strategist for Netconcepts, on this topic, visit the conclusion of this three part series on searchandising.

Adventures in Searchandising Part 2

December 19th, 2007

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Originally published in ClickZ

In part one of adventures in searchandising, PJ Fusco, lead strategist for Netconcepts, discussed how traditional merchandising methods are not optimal for online retail stores for a variety of reasons. PJ Fusco described “how merchandising strategies for brick-and-mortar retail stores don’t necessarily translate well for search engine referrals when incorporated into virtual, online retailer environments.”

As the middle of this three-part article, adventures in searchandising part two, PJ describes the effect of guided navigation and extreme pagination on the search engines. She writes,

It takes longer to crawl a searchandise-bloated site, so crawl efficiency is dampened. Over time, spiders take smaller bites of the site each time they visit, so indexed pages become stale. Fusty pages get fewer click-throughs, reduced traffic inhibits link building and page popularity, and so the downward spiral of search engine invisibility begins — all because the site provides a great user experience.

What can an e-commerce site do to add context and meaning to navigational searchandising and avoid the affects of extreme pagination while delivering a superior user experience? We’ll talk about some options next time.

With detailed examples and PJ’s expertise, this article focuses on the challenges many eCommerce sites face while they try to “searchandise.” For how to navigate through this fascinating aspect of online retail merchandising, read more about PJ’s recommended solutions in Part Three.