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Blogs by Webster J Frogg

The Untapped Potential of Coupons
By Webster J Frogg
8/11/2008 3:10:00 PM  
For consumers, online shopping has benefits such as convenience and comparison. For companies, it gives the advantage of a national reach, builds loyalty and credibility and increases revenue. But how do companies maximize that revenue when it is easy to get lost on the web under the vast number of companies? Well, the easy answer is to become a client of ShopVisible and use our technology to optimize your location on the web, streamline the navigation of your website, effectively promote your products and simplify the check out process. But if you don’t have time for such a large commitment (you should reconsider), you might consider posting coupon codes.

For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, I’ll explain a bit more about online coupons. Recall the last time you purchased something online. Remember at checkout that box that read “Gift card/Coupon code,” or something along those lines? Did you know that you could search for these codes and get discounts such as free shipping or 20% off your order? Well, you can! And for me, that makes online shopping better because then I don’t worry about the extra cost of shipping.

Now, to the point…Companies should willingly post coupons on the Internet. Not only will this increase the number of in-bound links (which helps your search ranking), it willamplifythe amount of traffic to your site and the number of orders. If you received 20% off, wouldn’t you buy more? Plus, people already try to Google search for coupons and are sometimes successful. If people were aware of your, albeit temporary, competitive advantage it could even increase customer loyalty.

My friends at ShopVisible understand the increase in sales coupon codes offer and have designed the e-commerce platform to easily allow coupon codes and other discounts at checkout. But if you still aren’t ready for a major commitment, try posting a coupon code and see if it increases your traffic and sales.

Be sure to let me know your results!

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Tags: Coupons, promotional codes, gift cards, gift certificates
Categories: Commerce Insights Blog
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Toolbars and Page Ranks
By Webster J Frogg
8/8/2008 10:54:00 AM  

 I’ve always been interested in television and the Nielsen ratings. But keeping track of a large populations television viewing habits can be a difficult and non-precise. Nielsen ratings rely polling and user feedback amongst other reporting tools.  

The internet, on the other hand, is much easier to track. That’s why Google and other search engines use Alexa. Anyone can download the add-on to a browser and it tracks which sites you visit. Thus, Google uses this data as part of its algorithm when determining natural search rankings.

Now think about it…who goes to your website more than you do? No one…

Download Alexa and you are bound to increase your page’s ranking! 

Another cool tool by Google is Page Rank. This works similarly to Alexa and tracks traffic to the site and the number of links. To quickly get a Google Page Rank on any website just install the Google toolbar. Page Rank is one of the original core features of Google, one of the reasons why Google search results contained more relevant information. Page Rank ranks web pages based on inbound links weighs but not all inbound links are equal. And inbound link from a small website such as the Marietta Journal does not contribute as much to a Page Rank as a link coming from a large site such as CNN or the New York Times. Therefore, pay attention to this number, any number greater than four is awesome, when joining sites and directories. Remember: quality NOT quantity! 

By using tools such as Alexa’s tool bar and the Google Toolbar you can gauge the quality of your inbound links and work to build a stronger network of websites that link to your store. But there is one caveat to this Page Rank is not the sole tool Google uses to place sites in search results, relevant content is also important. A link from the New York Times may give your site a large boost but if someone is searching locally for restaurants in Marietta a link from the Marietta Journal, a local newspaper, could be just as important. 


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Tags: Google Page Rank, Alexa, Page Traffic , Page Rank, PageRank
Categories: SEO, Commerce Insights Blog
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Take Advantage of Rising Gas Prices
By Webster J Frogg
7/22/2008 12:13:00 PM  

I was reading this great article last night and it got me thinking. The cost of gas has been hitting the consumer hard. Not only do they face the increased price of goods due to shipping costs, they now also have to face the rising cost of gas to fuel their trip to the mall or retail outlet. But, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel…

Run promotions around saving gas money! Offer your customers free or reduced shipping and remind them of how cost effective it is in comparison to a full tank of gas. The relative cost of shipping a product to the customer’s door has dropped as gas prices have risen. At $4 a gallon, driving 20 or 30 miles to the mall is no longer a cheap trip. The internet offers customers a wide variety of retail stores in one convenient place, saving them the time and money it takes to travel from store to store.  Online sales have jumped from $175 billion to $200 billion in the past year, an increase that many retailers are not seeing in their physical stores. While large retailers still have to maintain big stores, smaller more nimble e-commerce stores are able to move product from warehouse to customer quickly and more efficiently. With many E-commerce stores taking advantage of drop-shipping, they are saving costs associated with maintaining inventory and managing a supply chain.

So what are you waiting for? Get out there and start promoting your products, remind your customers of how they can save when shopping online and set yourself apart from your competitors.


-Webster J. Frogg

Currently rated 5 by 1 person

Tags: Gas Prices, E Retailers, promotions
Categories: SEO, RSS, Commerce Insights Blog
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Strategy of Links
By Webster J Frogg
7/16/2008 12:58:00 PM  

I have continually stressed the importance of links in regards to optimizing your storefront to ensure that your site is ranked high in search engines, Alexa and Google Page Rank. While there are three types of links: inbound, outbound and reciprocal, it is important to understand to which sites to link your URL. In the world of the Internet, linking sites is a form of association. You are saying “think of me when you are on this site, we are friends, etc.” Therefore, a rule of thumb and suggestions to link by:

1.    Content must be related!
As I stated before, links are considered association not only to customers, but search engines as well. Before adding an outbound link, make sure supporting context exists. With inbound links, you don’t want to risk putting your website in a negative light. Check the Page Rank of the sites you are associated with—yes, it is a popularity contest…but hopefully without all of the drama! This is especially useful when determining whether or not to pay to be listed in a directory. Even if the site is popular, content still must be related! Have a purpose for the link or you will be penalized when the spiders crawl.

2.    AllinURL
Searching for sites that use the same keywords you do is a great way to find new sites to which to link your site. You don’t want to link to competitors, but you should respond to blogs and forums. This will help expand industry discussion and you can sneak in your URL for contact information or as a hyperlink. For instance, if you are responding to a blog to which you disagree, include a hyperlink to the page on your site which helps prove your point. This is also a great chance to add more links to deeper pages on your site. (Yes, I do encourage comments to my blogs…I get lonely!)

3.    Blogs
We all love blogs, or we wouldn’t be here…and they are a great way to encourage customer-generated content and outbound links. For instance, I have written many blogs in response to an article. Adding the link to the article helps both sites because search engines perceive this as credibility, social interaction and related content. Truly, I do it for the sole purpose of educating my readers and avoiding plagiarism…

Blog rolls are another great way to expand your blog. Add an RSS feed of another blog on a topic that your readers might find interesting. Again, this increases credibility, association and outbound links. Additionally, with greater information on your site, you are likely to gain repeat visitors.

4.    Quality, not Quantity! 
To sum it all up, it is important to remember that when you create links on a daily basis it is QUALITY not quantity! This includes the factor on content, page ranking and credibility. The Internet is a great place to create loyal customers and gain brand awareness, but you are constantly molding your brand image. Be sure this is done with careful consideration… not everyone’s brand can be strengthened through the help of a tree frog. 

Now, go link crazy!


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Tags: e-commerce solution, link, search ranking, page rank, alexa, hyperlink, outbound, inbound, reciprocal, site optimization, SEO
Categories: SEO, RSS, User Generated Content, Commerce Insights Blog
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What Does It Take To Be Hacker Safe?
By Webster J Frogg
7/14/2008 10:31:00 AM  
Ever since the beginning of the Internet, people have worried about unsecure sites and their personal information getting in the wrong hands…the hands of hackers. Viruses have been around and with unsecure wireless networks the potential perpetrators could be seconds away. What about cookie poisoning and SQL injections—how do you protect yourself from the vast number of threats constantly trying to infiltrate your computer? I have to admit, I love my new MacBook…but I regress. 

People will always be malicious or have too much time on their hands. Sad, but true. Admittance is the first step to prevention. In June, a single Trojan virus attacked Serv-U, one of ShopVisible’s clients (they host their own site), and everything was taken down within minutes.

…   ShopVisible TO THE RESCUE!

Now introducing hacker safe software complete with hacker report.
McAfee protects ShopVisible’s sites and each client receives a hacker report that shows the attempts while keeping track of the culprits who are no longer allowed access to the site.  While this is not full-proof due to constantly changing technology and sneaky innovation, it is a pro-active stance on hackers. Be safe, get your hacker report today!

This message is brought to you by Webster J Frogg.

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Tags: shopvisible, hacker, secure site, safety, online, cookies, bugs, viruses
Categories: Commerce Insights Blog
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