Visibility is the single most important factor that connects you to your target audiences initially. If you aren’t onvisible (visible online) then you’re definitely missing out on an opportunity to keep up with (or stay ahead of) the competitors and consumers. Today, the scope for you to engage with customers is greater than ever. And with increased choices in the market place a shopper has a higher chance of getting lost online. Hence, it is extremely important for you to be effectively onvisible. The competition is fierce and the business environment is challenging, but it is equally rewarding, too.
Change is the only constant in the retail industry. And with consumer spending going up by 5%, an average growth rate of 4.46%, and retail sales in the United States depicting an upward graph (last valued in May 2014 at $391.16B), old and new retailers of all sizes, including individual direct sellers/marketers, online retailers, franchise unit owners and large store operators are looking at prospective growth through a variety of e-marketing and online advertising strategies aided through Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Identifying the need for SEO:
- Organic search is the largest drive of online traffic to websites worldwide and 89% of all retail consumers use search engines when making a purchasing decision
- Combining SEO with key marketing disciplines like content, mobile, and social can turn your organization into a traffic, conversion, and revenue generating machine
- The significance of SEO within a retail business strategy is evident – companies adopting SEO are outperforming their competition
You may be looking at a combination of some or all of the following:
- Increasing the footfall at your outlet(s)
- Attracting more people towards your website
- Informing your audience about your forte
- Improving the buying experience for your customers
- Increasing customer loyalty towards your brand (the average brand loyalty level in the U.S., across a subset of categories is 22%)
- Tapping a demographic of the population different from your existing target group
- Making people aware about exclusive offers/discounts
- Reaching out to prospective customers through technological/social platforms
- Engaging your customers in the virtual space
- Expanding to new markets – domestic/national/international
What do you need?
The highest (quantifiable) ROI is the ultimate aim for any profit-oriented business. The subset of the broad aim would be smaller short and long term goals which would depend upon the services/products/brands you offer (variety and assortment), demographics of your target customers, your business approach, marketing strategy, promotional emphasis, size and scale of your business, competition, etc.
You need an SEO approach that’s directly proportional to your needs and priorities.
- Unparalleled visibility – With eCommerce and mCommerce on the rise, you have to be virtually (and physically) visible to the people you wish to cater to. Technology brings consumers into the shopping experience via options such as touch screen ordering, QR code advertising, mobile coupons and shopping lists.
- Customized solutions – With a view to creating an enormous boost in viewer traffic (resulting in increased sales and the ability to reach more potential customers), long term investment in the improvement of customer experience, optimum utilization of the multitude of digital platforms and the constant endeavor to ensure the best possible brand visibility, you need customized search engine optimization strategies and solutions.
- Content Strategy – While optimized content gets you found; quality is what will make you saleable. A unique content strategy, which blends seamlessly into your overall SEO strategy, is a must-have.
- Extensive research – Competitor analysis and research on industry trends should ideally lay the foundation of your SEO strategy based on – keywords, content, social media, links/backlinks, images/videos, etc.
- Geo-specific retail SEO – An unarguably important thing that will drive people towards you – proximity. If you are a multi-location retailer, you should have a metro-level strategy for your brand (which would comprise of sub-strategies with different approaches depending on the locations you are present in). If your presence is limited to the local markets, ensuring optimum utilization of social media to engage local customers is a must – local SEO is a rewarding technique for brick and mortar The focus should be on local search listings, which potential customers bank on to find businesses and services in their area. With local SEO tactics, smaller retailers can tailor their online marketing techniques to appeal to people located close enough.
- User Experience – Enhancing the user experience should also be at the top of your list of priorities. For instance, in case of E-commerce websites, the research and analysis must boil down to each individual product page (instead of just a few top-level pages). This would enable you to figure out and resolve issues that may not be explicitly visible.
- E-retail offering – In case you are an E-retailer, getting people and credible sites to link to your website should be one of your focal aims. Measurability and accountability are two stark features of any online marketing endeavor. You need an expert partner to figure out what’s not working for you – it might be something as simple as not linking your best products to your homepage, or lack of traffic to static pages. Focusing on product category pages (instead of focusing on individual product pages) could prove to be fruitful, too. Not limiting SEO to HTML and PDF pages, but also leveraging images (and including alt text and optimized captions), also needs to be an integral part of the SEO strategy for E-retail clients.
We can help!
We will start by understanding all about your business, your aims and your audiences. Whatever the size, scale or nature of your retail business, we’ll devise a strategy (tailored to suit your needs) to ensure the highest ROI and make you onvisible.