[intro]Before you begin, it’s important that you read this Guide first. When you have completed this Guide, you will be aware of the tasks you need to complete the basic Off-Site SEO for your EKM online shop.
When you have completed the On-Site SEO on your EKM online shop, you can begin to look at the Off-Site SEO. Essentially, if an online shop or website has plenty of external links pointing back it it, search engines see this as a measure of value; if a website or online shop is being linked to lots of different places then it must be more useful than one that is not linked anywhere.
With this in mind, it’s also important to consider where those external links are placed. Search engines recognise that blogs and social media platforms are populated by real people 99% of the time, so links on these kinds of websites are more valuable than those on directories which are not often frequented.
Therefore, external links on blogs, social media and similar are what you are aiming for. You also need to ensure that your EKM online shop has been submitted to search engines too - by providing them with information about your shop you are making it easier to be identified, and therefore, appear in search engine results.
This Guide will cover the tasks you need to complete to improve the Off-Site SEO of your EKM online shop so that there’s more chance of your shop displaying in the search results of your target customers.
Search Engine Submissions
When you have ensured that all of your content is up to standard, the next step is to submit your EKM online shop to the search engines. This is so that you don’t have to wait for the search engines to discover and crawl your shop and instead, you submit all of the information they need manually which will help you become naturally more visible in search engine results. These Guides will take you through the processes required:
[tips]When you have submitted your EKM online shop to the search engines, it is worth using a site such as Moz Local to monitor your business listings going forward. [/tips]
A very simple, yet often overlooked way of generating traffic to your EKM online shop is by creating an email signature which links to the shop and lists its social media. You need to ensure that when conversing by email over any aspect of your EKM online shop with suppliers, customers and potential customers you have the relevant details easily accessed via your email signature. Ensure that your email signature includes a minimum of:
- Your email address;
- Telephone number;
- The URL of your EKM online shop;
- Matching social media icons (hyperlinked to the relevant profiles).
It’s essential that you have set up a blog for your EKM online shop and are updating it regularly to help your search engine visibility. As mentioned previously, search engines - particularly Google - like blogs as they recognise that blogs are updated and maintained by human beings and not bots - so with that in mind, quality blog posts that link to your EKM online shop content do carry a lot of weight.
You can read more about blogging here if you’ve not set one up already as it will guide you through the process of creating your first few posts. After you've populated your blog with a handful of posts to get it started, you need to take a look at this Guide which shows you how to blog for SEO, organically increasing traffic to your blog and thus, your EKM online shop.
An often overlooked aspect of Off-site SEO is Customer Feedback. This can come in many forms and via many different platforms. It’s essential that you have provided different ways for your customers to provide feedback and reviews. This can include:
- The Customer Reviews feature on your EKM online shop;
- Customer Reviews on your Facebook Page;
- Third-party platforms such as TrustPilot and Reviews.io.
Whether you have some or all of the above examples set up already, it’s important that you check that you prompt customers for feedback regularly. Using TrustPilot, this step is completed for you (as the platform emails the customer a week after their purchase to request a review) so check this is the case with what you have set up already. If it’s not, you may want to amend the content of your Order Complete emails to add an email address for customers to provide feedback. Plenty of folks are flattered by this request and will often comply as it’s a ‘personal touch’ to tell a customer that their opinion matters, and more so if you implement one of their requests.
You can also regularly encourage your customers to tell you what they’d like to see in terms of product lines, discounts, promotions and services via a specific blog post or a Webpage on your EKM online shop. This is a good way to identify gaps in the market and gauge trends in your industry that your competitors may not have discovered themselves, as well as encourage an organic relationship between your business and your customers to grow. Customer Reviews and feedback encourage potential visitors to visit your EKM online shop.
A successful online shop requires social media! Whether you like using it yourself or not, it’s essential that you provide different platforms for your customers to contact you on. Search engines recognise that social media content is generated by human beings and not bots, so any links to the content of your EKM online shop on a social media platform carry a certain amount of weight in terms of authenticity. It’s these quality ‘backlinks’ which improve the SEO of your shop. You can read more about social media in this Guide; minimally, a Facebook Page is a good place to start if you’re not sure where to begin.
Whether you trade online only or have a physical shop, it's important to list your EKM online shop on the relevant map platforms. During the set-up process, you can elect to list your business as 'online only' (so there's no chance of customers visiting your personal address) and for those of you who also have a physical shop, you can list vital details, such as parking facilities and opening times on your business profile. To do this on Google Maps, you need to create a Google Business Profile, which you can set up by following the steps here. When you have created your Google Business Profile, repeat this process on Apple Maps by following the steps here. Finally, create a listing on Bing Places For Business by following the steps here.
[contact] If you need our help with your EKM online shop, contact your Account Manager or Customer Support, who will be able to point you in the right direction. We're open from 8am-6pm weekdays and 9am-5.30pm on the weekends. If you'd like to suggest a feature or an upgrade on any of the EKM platforms, please let us know on the EKM Suggestions board. If you have a non-account specific question ask the EKM Team, join us in EKM Community. [/contact]