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Sitemaps for eCommerce explained

January 20, 2016 - 5 Comments

An eCommerce website is made up of many moving parts: the shopping cart, the order confirmation page, and so on. You might think that every one of these pieces and pages exists to serve your customers in some way, but some of them exist almost solely to serve search engines.

A sitemap is one such page. Your customers will probably never find your sitemap useful, but to search engines, it’s one of the most useful components in existence. Having one can improve how well your store is reviewed by search engines, and how visible each of its pages might be in searches for related keywords or phrases.

If you’re curious about the necessity of sitemaps for eCommerce, how having one can improve your store, and how you might even be able to take your existing sitemap to the next level, we’ve got you covered. Pack your bags and come along with us on a journey into the world of sitemaps.

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Marketing tactics for new stores (and the extensions to make them happen)

December 21, 2015 - 3 Comments

When you start an online store, there are hundreds of things that demand your attention. Along with the basics — order fulfillment, customer service, restocking and producing products — there are also tactics designed to grow and improve your business.

Marketing is something that new store owners usually know they need to invest their time and energy in, but struggle to start with. Finding marketing tactics that work is tricky, as is making the time to apply said tactics to your store.

To lend you a helping hand, we’ve collected a few of the most ideal ways that you can spread the word about your new store, along with the WooCommerce extensions that make these methods possible. We’ve also included some info on how to tell if this is a good fit for you, plus additional reading on each tactic.

Keen to kick off your marketing? Have a look at the strategies we’re recommending for you.

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How to improve your SEO with WooCommerce product tags

September 23, 2015 - 10 Comments

Football season is starting again in the United States. And as many fans well know, whether or not a team wins a game depends on nearly countless factors — how loud you yell at your television not withstanding.

Search engine optimization, often abbreviated as SEO, is not unlike this. How well any one website or online store ranks for any given search term depends on a mindblowing amount of factors ranging from big to small. And in the case of WooCommerce, one of these factors is tags.

Though often overlooked, WooCommerce product tags offer a small, yet necessary, opportunity for your store to optimize for online searches. With a few mindful adjustments to your language and links, tags can both boost your rankings and give you a competitive edge.

Curious? Let’s take a closer look at how product tags and SEO go hand-in-hand.

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10 WordPress plugins we greatly admire

August 18, 2015 - 86 Comments

With so many plugins available for your self-hosted WordPress site, it can often be really tough to choose the ones that best suit your needs. Currently, there are nearly 40,000 plugins in the official repo, not to mention countless premium plugins available for purchase from a host of different companies.

There are a number of ways you can work out what the best choices are for your website, but we thought we would help you out by providing you a few plugins from the WordPress community that we admire. We admire these plugins only for their usefulness, but also for the way they are built and maintained.

Some of these plugins are freely available, while some carry a price tag. But one thing that they all have in common is the fact they are all incredibly well built and perform their respective tasks in the best way possible. Some of them are also included in our WooBenefits — tailored discounts offered exclusively to WooThemes customers.

So, without further delay… here’s the list!

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The store owner’s practical guide to being search engine friendly

May 29, 2015 - 4 Comments

There are hundreds of guides out there on the topic of search engine optimization. And they all promise one thing: with their help, you’ll rank better and sell more.

The problem is, as a store owner, you only have so many hours in your day. You’ve got enough to worry about without throwing SEO into the mix. Guides that recommend investing your valuable time into copywriting, on-page optimization, link building, or content creation seem practical enough… but only if you can grow an extra set of arms.

Rather than invest all your time and effort into additional forms of optimization — some of which may not even be practical for your niche or current growth stage — it’s best to shift your mindset to simply being search engine friendly at all times. By establishing basic SEO groundwork up front you can drastically cut down on the amount of time you need to spend on future optimization.

By following this guide, you can be confident that your store is always optimized for search because it meets Google’s basic best practices. Let’s take a look at how you can get started with practical SEO.

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SEO Beyond the Basics: An Introduction to the Technical Side

December 30, 2014 - 5 Comments

SEO Beyond the BasicsWe’ve all heard about SEO basics, but what about those areas that require you to have just a little bit of technical knowledge?

This is what we call technical SEO. Yes the term is quite technical, I know. In short, it’s less about focusing on keyword optimization and more about understanding how search engines work to index your site. It’s less about ensuring your images are ready for the search engines and more about things like rich snippets, sitemaps, and URL structure.

But, wait a second. If it’s so technical, why is it so common for people to implement these tips on their sites? Well, the good news is that it’s not all that technical. Everyone has a chance to use these tips, and plenty of companies are going out of their way to work on these SEO tactics. The only thing is that many people don’t want to take the time to learn about these slightly more technical SEO topics, creating a huge advantage for you.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the more technical areas of SEO and how to implement these tips on your own online store.

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How to Generate Sustained Traffic To Your Online Store Without SEO

November 2, 2014 - 2 Comments

seo-site-visitorAs you’re probably aware, over-reliance on one source of traffic can be fatal for a marketing strategy. Google proved this when they implemented the Panda and Penguin updates that ended the eras of “keyword-rich” content mill garbage and threw out a lot of people from the search results who were gaming the system.

Plus, SEO takes up a ton of time and resources that you might be able to put into even more effective methods of drawing traffic. If you don’t have the time and money to build more backlinks and generate more content than your competitors, chances are, you’re not going to pull in the biggest and baddest keywords, anyway.

So let’s explore some other ways to go about it. This article will focus both on how to pull in initial traffic and how to get people to return once they’ve had the first taste of your site.

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Why Your Ecommerce Site Needs a Sitemap (And How to Generate One)

August 8, 2014 - 3 Comments

Ecommerce Sitemap63% of ecommerce sites have a sitemap.

That might seem like a high percentage, but what bothers me is the 37% who are missing out.

Why? Because a sitemap is an integral component in your online store’s success. Thankfully, a missing sitemap is an easily remedied problem. Here’s everything you never knew you needed to know about sitemaps so you get familiar with the concept and implement one as soon as possible. 

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Top 10 SEO Tips for E-Commerce Stores

July 23, 2014 - 10 Comments

SEO for E-CommerceIf you plan on selling any products or services via the internet, you need to make sure that people can actually find you.

There’s no sense in having a fancy website with the best products at awesome prices if your site can’t be found after the first page in Google. Few people will take the time necessary to look that far.

This is where your SEO efforts come into play. Rank higher in the search engines and people are more likely to find you. The more traffic you get, the more likely you are to make sale after sale. After all, isn’t that why you’re in this business in the first place?

Here are 10 tips to help you maximize your SEO efforts to help create a strong presence on the internet.

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