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Making SEO work for you

While many retailers are looking at implementing new mobile, social or multi-channel strategies, it’s important not to forget the basics with an online proposition.

Two retailers realised just that this week, and both lifestyle brand Lacoste and footwear brand Deckers chose to invest in search engine optimisation (SEO).

SEO can have a huge impact on website traffic and, managed correctly, can ensure retailers are introduced to a new audience depending on the relevant search terms. However, SEO is not a one-off process and must be continually managed to be most effective.

Adam Bunn, director of SEO at search engine marketing agency Greenlight, believes analysis is the key to getting SEO right: “[Retailers can ensure they’re using the correct SEO keywords] by conducting lots of analysis. There are tools both free and paid for that will help a retailer establish what keywords are being used to find products online, and how frequently they’re used each month, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

“SEO, like paid search, benefits from being planned and tracked in a way that isn’t possible with many other forms of marketing, so retailers ought to be considering conversion rates, stock levels, price competitiveness and profit margins in any decisions about keyword targeting. In this respect, a pre-existing paid search campaign can be incredibly useful for data about keyword performance before embarking on an SEO campaign.”

Ben Staveley, head of ecommerce at SEO agency dotSearch, says links are also important in an SEO strategy: “Internal links within your site help to promote from within and link everything together. Quality links pointing to you increase the strength of the site, domain authority and overall popularity.” 

Seeing the effectiveness of an SEO strategy is not immediate and retailers must wait to see results. Bunn advises a three-month wait between embarking on SEO and seeing significant results. 

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