4 reasons users hate web forms

Forms are a recognised part of life, we fill in job applications, purchase products, create accounts and many other functions.  But the length and content required can and very often is a major off put to customers.

This article discussed 4 key reasons why users hate forms and also provides some thought as to simple techniques that if used wisely can improve the chances of customers filling in and completing the process.

Things about Web forms that drive visitors away from your online store:

  1. Forced to fill a long form that demands too much unnecessary information
  2. Lack of clarity regarding what kind of input is required for a particular field
  3. Not finding the right options in the fields where text input doesn’t work
  4. Form doesn’t save and the user is asked to fill the whole form again for a single error

Article: read more

Disavow Links – Improving a link profile

With the recent updates from Google, which target sites that have carried out bad practice when it comes to gaining search engine ranking position. It is important to understand how to remove links that you have no access to and are flagging concern in the relevant search engines.

I’m currently working with two ecommerce sites that have both suffered an automatic penalty from Google as a result of bad in-bound link profiles.  Searching the internet provides a large number of posts saying that it is possible to recover sites using the Google Disavow tool and also the Bing tool-set.

Both Bing and Google webmasters provide links and instruction of how to submit a list of potentially bad links to assist in the search engines ignoring them when considering the site for inclusion in the search engine results page.

The links provide access to the disavow tools and some explanation of how to use.

Google:

Disavow Tool Hlep Article: read more

Bing:

Disavow Tool Help Article: read more

HREFLANG, examples on how to implement

The two articles highlighted in this post provide a couple of examples of how to make use of the hreflang tags to promote and ensure that the correct language version of content is recognised for localised search results.

It can be very confusing when reading all the articles to see exactly how it fits and how to implement.  A couple of lines of explanation are provided (structural) that a developer can be pointed towards in order for them to add correctly to a site.

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Effective PPC Campaigns – 12 Essential Tips

I’m seeing a lot of clients moving towards Google Paid Search Campaigns to generate traffic.  A small number are also looking at running paid campaigns in Facebook to drive traffic.

Very often a large percentage of clients spend more money on getting traffic than they generate through sales, which typically comes down to poorly defined keywords and poor landing pages that add no real value.

This article from e-Consultancy covers 12 Tips to ensure that the landing page (where you send the user from serach) is built correctly, maintains trust and converts the visitor to a customer.

Article: http://econsultancy.com/uk/blog/62415-12-essential-ppc-landing-page-success-factors

Update to Google Top Level Domains

Google have recently updated the generic list of top-level and regional domains it recognises.

Domains classed as Generic TLDs can be geo-targeted in Googles webmaster tools and hence enable the user to use directory structures for internationalisation of a website.

Two links:

Article showing the additions:

http://searchenginewatch.com/article/2266224/Google-Starts-Treating-More-Country-Code-Top-Level-Domains-as-Generic-TLDs

Googles recognised page for Geo-Targeted Domains in webmasters:

http://support.google.com/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1347922

The Customer Journey to On-Line Purchase

This article looks at the different channels involved in the customer journey.  It provides a useful tool to benchmark your industry and location to see the position and importance of the various marketing channels such as

  • social media
  • search
  • direct traffic
  • referral
  • paid traffic
  • etc….

The benchmarks database at the end of the article pull s all the data into one screen for easy reference.

http://www.google.com/think/tools/customer-journey-to-online-purchase.html

Geo-Targeted Keywords

This article discusses ge0-targeted keywords and where they fit for different types of business.  With Google placing more emphasis on local search results, understanding how and what to include in your keyword focus is all important as search becomes more localised and targeted.

There’s also a link to an introductory article regards keyword research techniques tools.  It covers the principles of long-tail keywords and the importance on conversion.

Original Articles:

http://www.choosewhat.com/starticles/seo-for-beginners-part-ii-geo-targeted-keywords

http://www.choosewhat.com/starticles/seo-for-beginners-part-i-keyword-research

Getting an ecommerce project right by asking the correct questions

I’ve worked with a range of companies of late where the website has been recently re-designed but still fails to deliver the required functionality and flexibility.  It typically relates to a lack in the original specification and requirements developed at the start of the project.

Here’s a list from an article recently released that can form the basis for a useful and informed discussion with a developer.

  1. Pick a web development company that delivers good projects and websites
  2. Ensure you have access to the source code or CMS, incase you part company, what happens
  3. Where is the hosting service provider
  4. How flexible is the CMS, can I customise it.
  5. How many developers will work on the website
  6. What’s the Cost of hourly development, once site is released for changes
  7. Does the platform (CMS) allows plenty of room to grow and expand
  8. What elements are neccessary in the site for driving sales
  9. Ask for SEO friendly HTML structure – page urls, ability to modify page titles and descriptions
  10. Requriemetns for browsing products – is it by category, size, price, or anything else
  11. How do we handle international version of the site
  12. Is there a mobile visible theme for website
  13. Gifts, event or programs option for website

Baidu – Some interesting thoughts and suggestions

With the value of online transactions in China reached $190 billion in 2012 and the country is predicted to overtake the US as the world’s largest e-commerce market at some point this year.

This article looks at the opportunities, the SEO perspective relative to Google and also a brief look at paid search.

Read the full article here: