When retail businesses decide to add an online store, many think that all they really need to do is make the website, add the store and sales will start pouring in. Of course, for anyone who has ever tried to make a living from an online store, the reality is pretty far from this tale. Even if you are an experienced retailer who has learned who all the good payment gateway providers are, what the best keywords are to attract consumers and use social media to extend your reach, getting customers to your site is still hard work.
To make matters even more challenging, sometimes you do it all correctly, have the hits that make your site and store successful, and then it suddenly all begins to go south. Sometimes it can do it in a matter of a few days or a week. For some retailers, it can be a source of frustration as you struggle to discover just what has changed on the web to have such an impact on your numbers. Here are a few places you may want to explore when the famous “Google Bounce” stops giving you the numbers you need.
Google and Its Algorithms
One of the first places to look when this happens is on Google itself. The number one search engine keeps a blog that updates all the changes that it makes, and this is important if you are the caretaker for even just one retail website. That is because Google creates algorithms that make decisions about who is ranked high in their search engine. Google is constantly fine tuning these so that the top sites reflect the kind of site someone is looking for when they search on Google.
Correcting for Keywords
There was a time when keywords were the number one thing that ranked your site. But then when people figured that out, they stuffed their sites with keywords to a ridiculous point. That was when Google decided that it needed more than just keywords, it needed to understand language in order to read the sites and determine what kind of information they were making available.
Today your site ranks high for a keyword in a search term if it truly talks about that item. So, checking with Google to see if they have changed their criteria for search is a good place to start looking for culprits that resulted in poor site rankings. After all, if your customers can’t find you in search, they won’t buy from you.
Is your site still relevant for the kind of search people make? This may seem like an odd question if you sell shoes and your keywords are things like “women’s brown shoes” or “kids play shoes” but you would be surprised how quickly search terms change. Look at the statistics for each page and note when things began to change.
It may be that certain words or phrases have begun to be popular in search because of a news item or something that is circulating the web right now. How does what you sell fit into that new term? When you look at all three of these concerns, you may be able to pinpoint just what is making your website numbers take a dive.