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eCommerce SEO: 5 Quick, Effective Tips

ecommerce seoCommerce SEO is crucial for any digital storefront. After all, eCommerce search engine optimization is required in order to outrank competitors and outperform paid ads. While the eCommerce SEO strategies for Google, Amazon and Etsy may seem to have different requirements, they ultimately evaluate your product listing for relevancy. By following site-specific guidelines as well as on-site optimizations, your eCommerce store or listing can begin ranking.

 

5 Quick, Effective Tips for eCommerce SEO:

  1. Product Descriptions

Whether your own site or an eCommerce platform’s, utilize every opportunity for product information. Product descriptions will be the most influential in your ranking. Keep these detailed, with the most important information mentioned first. However, filling out product information about size, ingredients, quantities, and other factors will offer supplemental support. Every time there is an information box, find the answer and include it.

 

  1. Selective Tagging

There will always be an opportunity for tags, whether the title tag, meta tag, or product tag. First, do your own search and see what competitors are trying. If certain key phrases or tags seem to be oversaturated, refine your tags. While your tags should use keywords with high volume searches, your listing shouldn’t be lost in the noise. Find some niche keywords where your product has limited competition, but relevancy toward your listing.

 

  1. Photo Enhancement

For every product, upload a minimum of three photos. This can include different angles, backgrounds, and zooming. Your customers do not have the chance to pick up and inspect your product like they could in a physical store. Choose from high quality photos that are consistent with your brand (you would hate to lose a customer from photos that look suspicious or low quality). Then, include photo tags when possible (often mentioned as an alt tag).

 

  1. Customer Service

Many eCommerce platforms will consider product likes, reviews and visits into their algorithm. Therefore, deliver what your customers want. Find a trend among the most-loved products. Reevaluate your keyword strategy based on the best selling products. Encourage people to leave reviews, whether in email marketing or a note in your delivery package.

 

5. Consider Paid Ads

Paid placements can improve your organic efforts. After all, conversions from these ads can help you learn about your keywords, increase the number of reviews, and increase page visits. Determine a budget then test social media advertising and search engine marketing options.

 

Learn more ways to improve your eCommerce web presence. Talk to a representative at Frost Media Solutions today!

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Airbnb Profile Optimization

Airbnb is a great way to make some extra income and meet interesting travelers — it’s a win-win all around!.

At the core of what drives Airbnb ahead of their competitors is their search algorithm, which rewards good hosts by showing their listing higher up in the results; in turn, this can attract more users and bookings, creating a positive reward cycle.

Optimizing your profile to appeal to Airbnb’s search algorithm is important for growing your number of bookings and running a successful listing. Here are the top strategies for optimizing your Airbnb listing:

1. Make Sure Your Photos Stand Out

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As users browse through their options, each listing is afforded a headline and a photo. Make sure that the 140-character headline provides 1 or 2 of the best details about your listing — is it walkable? Is there transportation nearby? Is it in a historic area of downtown, or a trendy, up-and-coming area? Use the headline to grab users attention (but don’t go over the top, since if aspects of the listing are exaggerated, you risk getting bad reviews or losing potential bookings).

Similarly, the photo chosen for the listing should offer a glimpse into a pretty living room or neat bedrooms so users immediately get a feel for what the most important parts of the space look like. Try to take photos during a time of day that offers the best natural lighting. Take photos with a meticulous attention to details like lighting, neatness, color, angle. This can set a listing apart, especially in areas where there are lots of listings at similar price points.

For eligible hosts, Airbnb even offers free professional photography of your space; check to see if you are eligible, and take advantage of it! The photos will be watermarked with “Airbnb Verified”, which helps in building trust with users that the space in the photos accurately reflects what they’ll open the door to. Airbnb rewards those who have high quality photos and descriptions.

2. Make it Easy to Book and Never Cancel

Ease of booking is another element that Airbnb heavily factors into its on-site search algorithm. This is divided into two important factors to pay attention to: cancellations and response rates.

Basically, never cancel a booking. Airbnb rewards hosts who show that they are reliable. Make sure your calendars are up to date. If you are having trouble with fielding too many bookings, Seth Porges, a New York City Airbnb host recommends adding a note to your listing description that prompts users to email you first about availability. This way, you can feel out if you really do want to book with them, while simultaneously avoiding cancellation afterwards.

The response rate is more fuel for search rank; try to respond to people as quickly as possible. Even if you are already booked, or can’t make the accommodation they request, even replying with a simple, “I’m sorry, we’re booked,” is infinitely better than no response at all. Airbnb tracks these responses and rewards hosts who are prompt; striving for that 100% response rate is a great way to optimize your profile for search!

3. Reviews

Airbnb considers the quality and quantity of reviews for search rank. Accumulating numerous reviews is key to pushing your profile to the top.

Hopefully, you really are a fantastic host and your guests will have nothing but good things to say about you. However, if you are uncertain about what they may say, send them an email first. Ask about their stay and if they had any specific complaints about areas you could improve. If they come back with tons of grievances, take it gracefully and leave it at that.

If they come back with tons of praise, ask them directly if they could leave a review on your profile. Another good tactic is to leave a quality review of your guests on their profile (since reviewing goes both ways!). Airbnb reports that if you leave a review for your guests, they are more likely to leave a review for you.

4. Become Verified 

Make sure you go the extra mile and become fully verified. This includes uploading an image of government ID to AirBnB in order to verify your identity, as well as providing a phone number and email address that Airbnb will also verify. At the end of the process, you get a Verified ID badge on your profile.

Going through this process can feel laborious, but getting the badge is a great way to build the legitimacy of your profile!

Implementing these four tactics together will optimize your profile so you get a great on-site search rank, which means more bookings and meeting more great travelers, so you can get the most out of using AirBnB!

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Airbnb Reviews vs Hostel Reviews: What to look for and what to expect!

Airbnb is the new way of discovering new places at an affordable price. But why should you choose to join the Airbnb community instead of going to a Hostel? We wrote down some important things to keep in mind while looking at the reviews of both communities, to experience your stay to the fullest.

First of all, what’s the difference between Airbnb and a hostel? Airbnb is a community where owners of a house, apartment or studio offer travelers a place to sleep. That can vary from an entire apartment to a little room. In most cases, you’ll become someone’s roommate for a short period. The true charm of Airbnb is that locals can guide you around the city and give you some local insight.

Hostels, on the other hand are made for travellers, typically backpackers. They offer you a bed, communal areas where you can socialize with other travellers and in some instances a place to eat too. For most people, Hostels offer the opportunity to socialize with other like minded travellers, especially people who are travelling alone on a very strict budget.

Airbnb NYC provides some insight into how the new style of accommodation is helping local businesses, as well as tourists.

  • in the past year, Airbnb has generated $105 million in economic activity

  • 82% of Airbnb properties are located outside of Manhattan

  • A visitor spends $740 on average in the neighborhood where they stay

Airbnb: Reviews and what to look for

Although Airbnb is a wonderful concept, there are several things you should look at when scrolling through the review section while you’re on the search for that perfect place. The most important one is the way the host accommodates you on your arrival. These aren’t typical hotels so there isn’t a front desk with a fully fledged check-in system. If you read in the comments that the travelers didn’t even see their host, then you won’t be having the real Airbnb experience.  You should also keep an eye out for comments related to the cleanliness of the space. While you shouldn’t expect hotel level perfection, you are paying for it – and you want it to be clean!

Airbnb focusses more on the rational points – Communication, cleanliness and value for your money are key. The ‘unmeasurable’ aspects (such as atmosphere) will be hidden amongst the reviews.

Another important feature of Airbnb is the response rate. You’re not dealing with a brand, you’re dealing with a person – so you want to make sure they’re responsive. If you asked the person a question through the Airbnb app or website, that person has 24 hours to answer. If he or she doesn’t, their response rate will drop.

Reviews stay within Airbnb – as it is someone’s home after all. The various verification steps needed to create an account help provide comfort that all reviews are real people with real opinions.

Hostels: Reviews and what to look for

Most hostels are being reviewed on external websites such as Tripadvisor or Hostelworld.com.

When we look at the rating of Tripadvisor, there is a general rating system just to get an overall opinion about a hostel. On the right there is a rating summary, with almost the same topics as Airbnb. The only difference is that Tripadvisor wants you to know what your thoughts are about the sleep quality and the rooms. The other useful piece of information – is being able to narrow down reviews to suit your travel type e.g. family vs. solo. By viewing reviews only relevant to your travel type you’re getting a more tailored understanding of the hostel to your needs.

We’ve broken down the differences in the table below – so that you can make up your own mind on the hostel vs. Airbnb debate!

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The Habits of a Mobile Shopper: Reviewing and Commenting

Here is another survey report from Nielsen about the habits of Mobile shoppers:

We already know that mobile shopping is growing, in step with the growing group of smartphone and tablet owners, but what kinds of activities are mobile shoppers pursuing? Considering the varying mobility between tablets and smartphones, it’s little surprise that mobile shopping activities often depend on which device is used as much as where it’s being used.

U.S. mobile shoppers use their devices most frequently in the home, according to Nielsen, as more than two-thirds of smartphone shoppers and four-out-of-five tablet shoppers do—sometimes while watching TV. While shopping on their mobile devices, tablet owners are more active with product research (59%) and are more likely to purchase physical items (38%) than smartphone shoppers (24%).

Smartphone shoppers are more active outside the home, but they are more likely to do certain mobile shopping activities from home, such as reading reviews and using social media to make a comment on a purchase. Even though smartphones and tablets are made to be mobile, some mobile shoppers never leave the couch while they’re shopping, as 95 percent of tablet shoppers and 72 percent of smartphone shoppers who make a purchase with their device do so at home, although tablet users are more likely to make a purchase overall.

For mobile shoppers who make a purchase in a retail store, smartphones are constant companions and the in-store device of choice for most. En route to the store, 70 percent of smartphone shoppers use a store locator to plan their shopping trip. Once they arrive at the store, 37 percent stay organized using lists while shopping on their phones. Savvy mobile shoppers use their devices to check prices, and the majority of smartphone (63%) and tablet (53%) owners search and scan their way to savings, though more smartphone owners do this while in a retail store. And the savings continue at the checkout lane, where smartphone shoppers are more likely to use their devices for mobile coupons (34%) and for payment (23%).

But the experience doesn’t end at the checkout line. When mobile shoppers get back home, they pick up their tablets to track and share their shopping experience on the Web. Twenty percent write comments on social media and 16 percent use their tablets to write reviews of their purchases. Among tablet shoppers, 17 percent said they follow up on their purchase by looking up information on a complementary product. And for those that never leave home to shop, the majority of smartphone (55%) and tablet (52%) shoppers said they use their devices to track the progress of their online orders.

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The Influence of Positive and Negative Online Reviews

According to a new survey conducted by Dimensional Research, an overwhelming 90 percent of respondents who recalled reading online reviews claimed that positive online reviews influenced buying decisions, while 86 percent said buying decisions were influenced by negative online reviews.

Zendesk - has reading online reviews impacted your buying decision

The survey, sponsored by Zendesk in the early part of 2013, included responses from 1,046 participants. Respondents had to be in the United States, and had to have experienced a recent customer service issue with a midsized company, either as a consumer or in a business context.

Zendesk reports:

All survey participants were asked if they had seen online reviews of customer service. About two-thirds of participants (63% for negative and 69% for positive) reported that they did recall reading these online reviews. Review sites were the most common place to read a negative review of customer service (39%) where Facebook was the most common place to read a positive review of customer service (44%).

According to Marketing Land, the overall takeaway from the survey is that mid-sized companies create better customer experiences when they react quickly to a customer service issue.

Because a company’s social media channels and website are managed most often by marketing, the study offers strong evidence toward the importance of customer service working hand-in-hand with marketing to respond quickly to online reviews and addressing customer concerns that are delivered via a company’s site and social media channels like Facebook and Twitter.

This great information was found at this original article on Marketing Land!

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Social Media & Customer Service: SWISS Airlines

Last year, SWISS had expanded its social media channels to now handle 24-hour customer services and enquiries on flights, tickets and even rebookings – a move that reflects a wider industry trend to harness the strengths of the ubiquitous and immediate nature of the internet and social media.

In addition to the conventional telephone service hotlines, Swiss passengers can get in touch with the carrier either via Twitter or Facebook, where responses will be immediate. The service is available in five different languages too: English, German, French, Italian and Spanish.

Swiss is just one of many carriers that have started to recognise the game-changing role of social media, not just for brand exposure and awareness, but also for crisis management and customer service.

A carrier’s online presence is now almost as important as any other service element, which is reiterated when blunders occur and users are instantly broadcasting their views across the worldwideweb. Although many are still dipping their toes in the water, more and more will take the leap, like Swiss, and integrate the channel in their business models.

For more information on Swiss’ new service, visit www.swiss.com

 

FB: https://www.facebook.com/flyswiss

G+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+FlySWISS/posts

Twitter: https://twitter.com/FlySWISS

Instagram: @FlySWISS

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Customers Seek Reviews for Hotels (INFOGRAPHIC)

By Kev Mason

According to the following infographic on the Hospitality industry, 60% of consumers consult some type of customer review forum prior to making a purchase. When you are looking for a hotel during your travels, you most likely check out reviews on sites such as GoogleTripAdvisor, and Orbitz.

  • How many stars does the hotel have?
  • What sort of rooms are available?
  • What amenities are included in the room?

Customers frequently go to review forums to find answers to these questions.

The Hospitality industry makes on average $425 billion a year, with $255 billion of that annual revenue influenced by review forums.

A study done by Paragon Poll shows that 82% of the Hospitality industry is trying their luck with online conversation in review forums.

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Customers on Review Forums: A Loud Voice

By Kev Mason

Today, many consumers reach to the web to find out the pros and cons of a product or brand. Many consumers even share their feelings about products on review forums and across social media platforms. Why do they share? According to a study by Harris Poll, 46% of consumers feel they can be brutally honest on the Internet, and 38% aim to influence others when they express their preferences online. Thus, traditional online brand presence is changing, and so is the traditional form of PR.

A lot of consumers take to heart what others’ have to say about a product, hence greatly influencing their decisions. According to Socialnomics, 90% of online consumers trust recommendations from people they know; 70% trust unknown users, 27% trust experts, 14% trust advertising, and 8% trust celebrities. Advertisement and TV spots influence viewers more often than not, but review forum sites take the lead. In this way, the consumers ultimately have the voice.

When you are looking for a hotel during your travels, you most likely check out reviews on sites such as TripAdvisor and Orbitz. When you are looking for a restaurant or popular bar in town, you might check out review forums like Yelp. And when ordering new products, don’t you typically check the reviews on AmazonNewegg, and Google?

Travis Tillotson, Managing Director at Surgo Group states: the “consumer impact phenomenon” has been rapidly shifting over the past 5 years, and now the direct correlation between purchasing and consumer reviews is no longer just an assumption but an actual measurable statistic, varying from industry to industry. Review Forums come in all shapes and sizes, however, brands need to take more of an active stance on trying to “control the conversation” if they want to compete.

Mr. Tillotson states that there are a myriad of ways to accomplish this feat, and they vary from industry to industry; but the bottom line is it seems brands need to be proactive about this industry shift, as no amount of positive “press” can outweigh the voices of the masses.

 

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