determinationWith all the Panda, Penguin and buzz surrounding them it’s very easy to get caught “putting out fires” all the time. It’s very tiring and not so successful overall… so let’s get going!

Below is a punch list of the things “I” think ecommerce shop owners should be concentrating on in 2013…. In order of priority. Call it a plan of attack, new year’s resolution… Call it whatever you like, but get out in front of that monster and stop “putting out fires”.

1. Content is still king if it’s not crap. What are Google and the other search engines looking for in content?

  • Make sure each page has a couple of good paragraphs.
  • Avoid lists and comma separated values.
  • Keep to that page’s topic when writing content.
  • Use common words that people might use to find your content in your content.
  • Write for the masses, not everyone is a college grad.
  • Structure your content properly with heading tags and organized paragraphs… Make it easy to scan.
  • Your content should be written for your shoppers! If it’s pushed down to the bottom of the page Google weighs it less and your shoppers likely never see it! #WasteOfTime

2. Usability is a never ending process. Making shopping easier gets more sales out of the visits you have already.

  • At least once a week shop on your website and go all the way through checkout.
  • Do you have pages that are really good but hidden from navigation?
  • Do you have the trust signals you need such as highly visible phone number, SSL, security seals, guarantees and such? These really do increase sales and Google is looking for them!
  • Do your pages load quickly? Start here
  • Are your product descriptions and images adequate for me to throw money at you?
  • Are you using colors in buttons and navigation to create a proper call to action and funnel people along?
  • It is REALLY clear what payment methods you accept? Here is a cool payment image generator.
  • Can I get a shipping quote before providing you my personal information?
  • Have privacy, conditions, shipping and returns in place and easy to understand?

3. Social Media is not going to go away just because you think it doesn’t apply to you… Instead you will go away =0

  • Minimum you should have a Facebook page. People have begun using Facebook to search for products, services and businesses instead of a search engine!
  • Very likely you should also have Twitter and Google+ (make sure to link your Google+ page and your website properly).
  • Having a Facebook page is not enough…. engage these people and find sales in return.
  • Your product pages should have at least Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Pinterest buttons for sharing. The benefit from even 1 pin is really huge!
  • Get on board with