Store Coach eCommerce Blog

How To Turn Google ‘Not Provided’ Data Into Something You Can Use – Coach’s Tip of the Week

TweetShare on TumblrOnce upon a time, Google Analytics was one of the greatest tools on the planet for seeing exactly what keywords people were typing in to find your website, what pages they were landing on and what the bounce rates and conversion rates were for those keyword searches. Unfortunately, due to privacy concerns, Google has gradually been hiding all of that wonderful data that we have come to rely on. Instead, depending on the website, as much as 90% of the keywords entered now show up as “not provided” – something they might as well re-name, “not at all helpful.” A few years ago, when Google was first rolling out this change, Dan Barker wrote an excellent article about how to turn some of that “not provided” data into something you could use, titled, “How to steal some ‘not provided’ data back from Google.” While his “hack” won’t help you with past searches, it does allow you to change the way that Google collects data, which you can then use to provide much better insights into all of those “not provided” queries. You won’t be able to see the keywords people typed in, but you WILL be able to… Read More»

How to Get Traffic Without Google – Coach’s Tip of the Week

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TweetShare on TumblrSurely, few things are as great as having excellent first page rankings for numerous targeted keywords in Google. With 67% of the search market, Google, alone, can drive more than enough traffic to make any website profitable. Putting all of your eggs in the Google basket can have drastic consequences, though, as thousands of businesses discovered over the past couple of years. No search engine monkeys with their algorithm as much as Google does and you are always just one algorithm tweak away from disaster if your only source of traffic is Google. You definitely want to do everything you can to score as high as possible in Google search rankings but you are playing with fire if you aren’t also doing everything you can to bring in traffic from many other sources. Three weeks ago, Chuck Price wrote an article for Search Engine Watch that highlighted ten other sources that you should be using to generate traffic for your website. Although I won’t highlight every one of the ten methods that Chuck wrote about in The 10 Best Ways to Generate Traffic Without Google, I’ll point out what I consider to be the top methods, below: Blog Commenting… Read More»

How to Stay on Track and Get Things Done – Coach’s Tip of the Week

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TweetShare on TumblrI was having a conversation with Dave Hermansen (a.k.a. “Coach”) the other day about a couple of articles I had cranked out earlier in the day and he asked “How did you write two detailed 1,000+ word posts like that in just a couple of hours?” He commented that it would have taken him a couple of days to write each one (something that I know isn’t true because I’ve seen him crank out four very detailed tutorials in a day). I told him how I stay focused and get things done and he suggested that I write a post about it, so here goes … Really, there are only five basic things I do to make sure that I get things accomplished, no matter if that is writing a new blog article, building a new website or finding a new supplier: Know what you need to get done Do one thing at a time Have a schedule Create the perfect environment Reward yourself Know What You Need to Get Done Really, you are never going to get anything at all done if you don’t have a plan. Whether you are insanely organized and need to map out… Read More»

4 A/B Split Tests to Try – Coach’s Tip of the Week

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TweetShare on TumblrA couple of weeks ago, Jamie Smith wrote an article for Search Engine Watch that discussed 5 takeaways from 4 different split tests. People are always asking us about what they should do to boost sales and, other than fixing some obvious things that we see when they order an Expert Site Review, the next step is to run split tests. Instead of guessing what might work or rationalizing what should work, it’s a much better idea to see what actually works and the only way to do that is with trial and error. When you are stuck for new things to try, it never hurts to see the types of things other people are split testing. I thought this article did an excellent job of not only providing ideas, but also cautioning that every website is different and that you should only use the results of other websites’ split tests as ideas of what to try – not absolutes on what will necessarily work for your own website. The four things that were split test were: Testimonial placement Pricing Trust symbols Special offers Testimonial Placement We’ve pointed out numerous times, both in our eCommerce training course and… Read More»

The Best Online Shopping Portals

TweetShare on TumblrA question we are asked quite often in our eCommerce forum is, “which shopping portals should I try?” Usually, the people who ask this question have already dipped at least their toe in the water with Google AdWords/PLAs and/or Bing Ads/Shopping and are looking at trying a few other advertising venues out. Unfortunately, there really is no way to emphatically state what the best shopping portals are because what works well for one product line doesn’t work as well for others. The reality is, some niches do very well with pay per click models and others don’t. Some do well with CPM banner ads while others don’t. Some are great for re-marketing and others simply aren’t. Likewise, some niches do really well with Google Shopping but not so great with regular AdWords or vice versa. The same is true amongst the many different shopping portals. Just because Nextag didn’t work, it doesn’t mean that Shopzilla won’t. Like practically everything in eCommerce, the only way you are ever going to know for sure is to test them, yourself. There ARE some major things you need to consider BEFORE you decide to give any particular shopping engine a spin, though.… Read More»

Buying and Selling Websites – Coach’s Tip of the Week

TweetShare on TumblrBack in the day, I made my name buying and selling websites. It was far easier back then to find undervalued websites on page one or two of the search results. I’d buy them, tweak a few things to get them to the point where they were generating far more income and then flip them. It takes considerably more effort to break onto the first couple of pages of the search results these days so there are very few diamonds in the rough to be found. Because of that, it takes a very keen eye and more than a little due diligence to ensure that you are not making a mistake when you decide to purchase someone else’s website. A week ago, eCommerce business broker, Jock Purtle, wrote an article that appeared on Search Engine Journal, titled, “What Makes A Million Dollar E-Commerce Business?” In it, he lays out an 8 point plan for determining the real worth of a website. Jock’s article is not only great for people who are considering the purchase of an already existing site, it’s also a fantastic blueprint for what people should be doing with their own websites, whether they plan on… Read More»

Finding The Keywords That Trigger Your Google Shopping Ads – Coach’s Tip of the Week

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TweetShare on TumblrAs I mentioned in a previous Tip of the Week – Moving From Google PLAs to the New Shopping Campaigns – time is running out for you to convert your old PLA listing to the new Google Shopping Campaigns format. If you don’t do it yourself, Google will do it for you and I can promise you that they will be looking out for their best interests, not yours. In other words, expect to pay far more than you should if you let Google handle it for you! Although I do like the new way of being able to manage your bid prices directly in AdWords now without necessarily having to create labels for your products, what I found very disturbing is that Google seems to have hidden the ability to see what keywords are triggering your Shopping Campaign ads. As I pointed out in my original article on this subject a year ago, “Add Negative Keywords to Your Google Shopping Campaign,” if you don’t want to pay for clicks that will never bring you any business, it is essential to see what keywords are triggering your ads and to add the bad ones to a negative keyword… Read More»

Use Google Trends with Coach’s Keyword Tool – Coach’s Tip of the Week

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TweetShare on TumblrOne of the things we get the most compliments about in our eCommerce training course is our proprietary keyword research tool. What makes it so great, is that you can simply enter a general “seed” keyword or two into it and it will find all of the longer tail and related terms for that keyword. It’ll also tell you how many people are searching in the USA for each one of those terms per day as well as give you a “Market Opportunity Score” (MOS) for each one. The MOS tells you how hard it will be to rank for any given keyword phrase in Google. This is a fantastic time saver for people who have an interest in a subject, would like to set up an online store in the niche but don’t know whether or not it will be worth investing their time into the niche. In a couple of minutes, you can find out what used to take us half a day to research, one phrase at a time. Unfortunately, as great as our Coach’s Keyword Tool is at telling you what is happening right now with search terms, it can’t predict the future. With… Read More»

How to Eliminate Duplicate Content On Your WordPress Site

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TweetShare on TumblrWordPress is a powerful software platform that can run just about any type of website you could possibly dream up. Aside from ecommerce stores, where I prefer to use BigCommerce, WP is my platform of choice and we have dozens of websites in our portfolio that run on WordPress (including this site!). Out of the box WP is relatively “SEO friendly” and somewhat optimized, but there are a handful of add-ons and tweaks I always implement to make it top notch! I will outline all of them below, starting with how to use a robots exclusion file to eliminate duplicate pages on your WP site. How to Eliminate Duplicate Tag Pages The only truly “duplicate content” pages that WP creates by default are the “tag” pages. I hate tag pages because they simply duplicate the post(s) that happen to use that tag. For that reason, I recommend not using tags in most circumstances. If you want to use tags, but don’t want the tag pages cached, you can do that by adding the following line of code into your robots exclusion file: Disallow: /tag If your WP blog is located at a sub-directory location (i.e. you would… Read More»

Top 6 On-Site SEO Problems – Coach’s Tip of the Week

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TweetShare on TumblrA couple of weeks ago, I told you about the Top 6 Conversion Rate Problems we see with websites who use our Expert Site Review Service. That post concentrated on things you could fix on your site that will get visitors to buy more often. That’s all well and good if you have a lot of visitors but what if you don’t? While we certainly recommend using things like pay per click on Bing and Google as well as trying out the various shopping portals to drive visitors to your website – especially at the beginning – relying solely on paid advertising is certainly not the best way of maximizing your website’s net profit. Ultimately, you want to have the majority of your traffic coming from free sources. Obviously, your blog and social networking can drive a moderate amount of traffic to your website, but any truly successful eCommerce website owner will tell you that the lion’s share of their traffic comes from organic searches. While backlinks certainly are a huge part of search engine rankings (for now), they won’t help as much if you don’t have all of your on-site SEO ducks in a row. While on-page… Read More»