ER 015: Keywords in URL, New Chat Feature, Build Your Fan Base & Audience
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Shopify Build a Business Winners
Sand Cloud Towels – learn from these guys on how to build an audience
This is The Ecommerce Roundup, Podcast 15, today is September 8, 2017, I’m your host Bryan, and here’s the ecommerce news roundup for this week –
- Getting your keywords in your URL for your Amazon listing
- A new chat feature for Amazon customers within the Q&A section
- How to build an awesome fan base
- Wall Street Segment
How to get your keywords in your Amazon listing’s URL
This isn’t new information but I just saw it recently and so I think it’s good to share. For SEO reasons, it’s a good idea to have your keywords in your URL. And as you know, Amazon is a website and so when you list products on Amazon, Amazon assigns them a URL. If you have your best keywords in your URL, then you will do better in organic search with Google and Bing, which will lead to more people finding your product on Amazon, so it’s a good idea to get your best keywords in your Amazon URL. Amazon already does great with SEO, but this just puts icing on the cake in terms of maximizing the SEO for your Amazon listing in search engines.
So how do you do this? How do you influence which keywords Amazon picks and assigns to your product’s URL?
Viral Launch came out with a PDF that I saw explaining this process. Here’s the summary. Pick your best 5 keywords. Put them in the front of your title. After your fifth word put a hyphen or colon in the title and then continue with your product’s title. Words like like, and, and the will not be used by Amazon when they make your URL. If you have fewer than five words then Amazon will take however many you have before the hyphen or colon, and then pick another word for you, so it’s best to use 5 keywords for this.
To change your URL, just update your title. Then within a few days your URL should be updated by Amazon.
This is a cool little hack. Will it change your business? No I don’t think so. This is certainly not an important task to do but it also only takes a few minutes so consider doing this. You could even test this against an old title, which is a better idea. Just make sure you save your old title first, then change it to a new title to max out the keywords in your URL, and let it run for a couple weeks. See which one works better for your business.
A new chat feature for Amazon customers within Q&A
I just came across this new feature today. So, as you know Amazon shoppers can ask questions about products at any time and these questions and answers show up on your product listing page.
It used to be that when you answered a question, that was that and then both the question and answer went on your page.
Now after answering a question this morning, I was taken to a chat page where I could chat with the person who asked the question. On the side of the site, Amazon also is trying to get you to do this chat on their mobile app, by telling you that the chat experience is better on mobile.
This blew me away because never before has Amazon allowed such close interaction with third party sellers and Amazon’s customers. Yes, you can email Amazon users but chat is a more intimate experience between a shopper and a brand. I’m sure there are many rules about what you can and can’t say to a potential customer but this is just another sign that Amazon is positioning themselves to be a global mall so to speak and is encouraging brands to interact with customers on Amazon. It’s an awesome development, and I don’t know where this is going, but it’s encouraging to know that AMazon is developing tools that allow sellers and buyers to interact in a closer way.
If you want to test this out, just answer a question on your product’s page. If you don’t get this chat box then maybe they’re rolling out this feature slowly, and just check back within a few days.
How to build an awesome fan base
So Shopify concluded their build a business competition recently, and I checked out the winners out of curiosity. I’ll link to the winners in the show notes, http://www.businessinsider.com/tony-robbins-shopify-build-a-bigger-business-winners-2017-9/#nikalene-riddle-skinnymixers-2.
If you don’t know what this is, Shopify has a business competition I think every year. It’s a great idea because it allows SHopify to promote their business while sharing Shopify success stories and giving small businesses exposure. It’s a great competition and everyone wins. including you and me because then we can study the winners and try to emulate what they are doing well.
One of the winners was a towel company called Sand Cloud. They won the category for “best raving fan culture” which basically means, they have the most engaged audience. Building an audience is such a hugely important task for any ecommerce store I started to check out their website some more. I’ll link to their site in the show notes and you have to go see it, https://www.sandcloudtowels.com
They do a few things amazingly well. First, they have a clear mission, stated at the top of their website, by giving away a percentage of sales to a charity. While I believe giving money away is a wonderful thing, I want to put my marketing hat on for a second at the risk of sounding cynical. Warby Parker and Toms shoes are also social enterprises as they also give product or money away, and I thought that this was a tactic that had been played out. Do people still really care about this? Am I really more likely to buy a towel from a company because they’ll give money to marine research and conservation? I think at first the answer is no. However, these guys have a unique product. They have tie dye beach towels with cool designs that clearly appeal to millennials. Their towels are really expensive too. So they combine a premium product, with burning man style beach culture branding that unites a tribe of people around the rallying cry of “save the fishies.” I don’t think supporting a charity outright works unless it’s woven into the brand story which they do very well here. But, not only that, the charities these guys support are also their customers, which I think is the huge kicker. Warby Parker and Toms shoes give product away to people in need, but those people in need don’t buy from them. With this towel company, the companies they support are also staffed with their customers! It’s an awesome connection for them.
Additionally, they have an ambassador program that emphasizes Instagram, which is the social channel of choice for creatives and millennials.
I don’t want to take too long talking about this company, but if you’re building an audience or a brand, and you should be, then you should go to their site and study what they do well.
For me, the clear takeaway, is unifying the story and mission. It’s all targeting the same person which is their customer. They nail their target market of people who go to the beach and who care about the beach. From there the word spreads to groups outside of beach culture.
Can you support your customers either through charity or otherwise? Sometimes this is just giving them exposure on your own social channels. But, these guys at Sand Cloud Towels do it better than most. No wonder they have a raving fan base.
Wall Street Segment
In this week’s Wall Street segment, let’s talk about Amazon making news again, as they always do.
Amazon is looking for a second headquarters outside of Seattle. And they say it’ll be a full equal to the headquarters in Seattle. This is an interesting move. I don’t really understand it unless the city of Seattle isn’t supporting the infrastructure to help Amazon grow. And if that is the case, then that’s a bad move by the city and people of Seattle, because Amazon has transformed the city for the better. Lately, Seattle’s politicians have taken an anti-business stance and so this could be a reaction to that. Any city worth their weight should be doing everything they possibly can to land this gig. Amazon said they are looking for a place with metro area of more than 1 million people, and business friendly environment. I’m going on the record right now and I think they’ll move to Atlanta. Atlanta is a huge city, has tons of space, decent weather, has Georgia Tech which is a good engineering school, is in a business friendly state, and has a giant airport. It’ll be interesting to see what happens!
Kohls announced that they’re going to start selling Amazon devices like the echo in stores. What the heck is with this idea? Are they trying to accelerate their bankruptcy? I really don’t understand this move. Maybe management is just trying to juice revenue right now and sell the company before the inevitable happens. I don’t know.
Shopify stock is on a tear. Payments stocks like PayPal and Square are also doing well. It seems insane that in this current economic environment things could continue to go up as they are but they keep moving up.
Bitcoin has crashed a bit due to China cracking down on the cryptocurrency and the ecosystem around it. However, the coin bounces back. I think on these dips it’s a great buying opportunity to get more.
So that’s it for today. Thanks for listing.
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