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Attracting Quality Traffic

There is a difference between Search Engine Optimization expert and an SEO marketer. The SEO programmer works with keywords and codes that enable the website to reach a search engine’s first page and earn a high page rank. The SEO marketer is more concerned with attracting high quality visitors.

The discipline of attracting good visitors is in itself a complex technology that takes into account communication styles, human motivational factors, consumer behavior, and website design. It is very possible for a SEO marketer to attract more traffic than the shopping cart can handle, without ever reaching on the top of any search engine’s ranking system.
 
Despite the claims to the contrary made by the professionals, any Do-It-Yourself business owners can learn how to attract quality visits to their website. The first thing they must realize is that high traffic numbers do not translate into high sales figures. In the SEO marketing world, a site with only a few thousand visits a month can earn the same profit as one which attracts millions of hits a month.
 
Hits vs. Sales
 
A hit merely refers to the fact that a visitor has accessed a web page. It does not track whether they came to shop, clicked in by accident, or were mislead by an affiliate publisher. 
 
A good sell-through ratio must be the goal of all ecommerce businesses. They must work to decrease the number of people who arrived at the site arbitrarily, and increase the number of shoppers who are pre-sold and ready to buy.
 
Understanding the website’s traffic, combined with shopper behavior, will determine whether the business should engage in a PPC or affiliate campaign, list on a comparison shopping site, buy targeted traffic, or build their marketing campaign on a combination of these marketing venues.
 
Target Audience
 
The first step is to identify the type of people who are currently buying from your site, or buying from the competition. This should be done long before a webmaster ever considers paying a SEO expert to code the site to improve rank on a search engine.
 
Being on the first page of the search engine’s results for ‘Buy Gadget’ is useless if the primary keyword phrase used by shoppers is ‘Model XXX Gadget.’ In most cases, ‘Buy Gadget’ is so generic, that even if a SEO expert can achieve a first page listing, they cannot maintain it for long.
 
Don’t ignore the people who already have their credit cards n their hands as the website is designed to cater to the masses. One of the best ways to do this is to find out who the product reviews. The way a shopper writes, their vocabulary, their grammar style, tells a lot about what they want, need, and who they are as a shopper. Another place to look is the forums. Of course, most of the people in the forums have already bought the product, and are ahead of the game. But, they will give a marketer clues as to what converted them from consumer to avid fan of the product.
 
One way to test intangibles such as communication style is to create multiple sales channels on the site. Channel A may lead the customer directly to the shopping cart or ask for reviews. Another may lead them to social networking tools. The next may lead them to tutorials and relationship building tools. 
 
Landing Pages and Channels
 
Customers will be brought from the web to landing pages at the start of these channels. How far the customer goes through the process, where they buy or leave is vital to determining who the shoppers are, and who are only visiting.
 
Not all customers should be forced to enter a site through the index page. In fact, leave the index page to track random traffic that accidentally hits the website.
 
Test the market. Change keywords and catch phrases in the advertising text. Keep track of the ratio between hits and sales. Most important, track the website’s exit pages, it can be more eye-opening to learn why people leave, then understand why they arrive.
 
A good tracking system can identify the keyword terms that bring shoppers directly to the shopping cart, and which takes visitors to an area of the site where they leave without making a purchase.
 
Where to Find Keyword Phrases
 
The last place a DIY marketer should look for keyword phrases is the SEO manuals and search engine keyword ‘tools.’
 
It is amazing to discover the number of repetitive phrases used in forums, emails, and newsletters that may have been completely missed by the search engines, but are ‘buzz’ words for anyone who is really into the product or service.
 
Pretend that you’ve never heard of the product. Go surfing for information, keywords, and phrases. Sometimes a brand name becomes the generic term for a product. Other times it is a truly arbitrary term.
 
Last visit the competition and see what they are doing that works. There is nothing wrong with borrowing a few retail patterns that ‘speak’ subliminally to consumers.


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