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The 'mystery' of search engine optimisation

SEO specialists can have retailers spending fortunes on search engine optimisation, when a few well-targeted investments will work, backed up by a lot of the single most important activity - getting (good quality and relevant) links from other websites to yours. Even a site that only executes partially well on the list below will do well.

I was prompted by a piece in the E-commerce Guide and here’s the top ten, which I generally accept and recommend. Concentrate on getting links (number six below) and the top three and you’ll be fine. If you have time, work on five, as your old product ranges will not be available on your website anymore - but you still want to keep the customer interested (and on your site).

1. Create relevant, keyword-rich product and category names, titles and descriptions.
2. Add relevant, keyword-rich content to the site.
3. Populate SEO-relevant attribute fields in your product catalog.
4. Ensure proper redirects from legacy URLs.
5. Configure 404 error pages.
6. Submit Sitemaps to search engines and directories.
7. Analyze site for broken links.
8. Fix landing pages.
9. Add tags to images and video.
10. Keep abreast of major changes in the search engine market landscape.

One and two are challenging for fashion companies as products are saddled with branded names. For example, products such as “havana shirt”, “limpopo skirt”, “frenzy trainers” actually translate from day-to-day search terms such as “T-shirt”, “denim skirt” and “fashion trainers”.

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