Category Archives: Ecommerce

Beyond Keywords: Synonyms for Successful SEO

In previous articles, we explored how Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can bring more traffic to your site. With SEO, search engines like Google can better serve your website to relevant customers. The goal of this process is to increase your rank in searches where your products are services could be the answer.

One of the main ways people perform SEO is through the use of key words and phrases. These dialogues are determined by the words your audience use to search your line of work. However, keywords alone cannot fully improve your visibility.

The Issue with Key Words

While key words are still an essential part to bringing traffic to your site, search engines have become smarter over time. In the past, using a key word multiple times in your content would increase your rank in relevant searches. However, entities such as Google have broadened their scope to include the user experience when judging rank. This means that readability becomes a factor in determining your site’s placement.

When reading anything, hearing the same word over and over again can get boring if not annoying. Repetition breaks the natural flow of a piece and can cause readers to stop reading. The same applies for your content. While you could use your keywords as many times as possible on your site, it will not be attractive to your users. As with any piece of writing, the use of synonyms can help greatly with this issue.

Improving Content & SEO with Synonyms

Synonyms, words that are similar to your desired word, will not only improve the readability of your content, but also improve your SEO as a whole. Today, search engines can understand and define synonyms of your key words and phrases. Thus, using synonyms will continue to enhance the searchability of your site, if not broaden the words that users can use to find your services. At the same time, your writing will be improved as a whole, making it more palatable and interesting.

Keeping users on your page is key to create customers. In order to tell if your site is attractive as well as optimized for searchability, make sure to read your content multiple times. How does it sound? It is enjoyable? is it relevant? Being critical of your content is a simple step in optimizing your website for turning visitors into customers.

Want to Learn More?

Wondering what key words you could use to optimize your website? Interested in learning more about the many ways you can work on SEO? BCSE is always here for you! Reach out to us with any questions you may have! If you are desiring a more hands-on approach to learning more about SEO, join the waitlist for Carrie Saunders’ upcoming course, “The Converting Website.” In this course, she will dive into SEO and other important factors that aim to optimize your website.

Improving SEO: Content Pruning

In previous articles, we have explored some techniques we can use to improve our site’s searchability and ranking through Search Engine Optimization (SEO). From technical SEO to on-page SEO, there are many aspects that we can work on to push our search engine ranking higher. One such method is content pruning.

An aspect of your site that search engines consider when determining your rank is content. Quality content not only is essential for good user experience, but also for the bots that crawl your website in search of its meaning. If the bots do not find value in your content, they will rank your page lesser, bringing down the ranking of your site. Thus, it is important to cut content that isn’t helping your business thrive.

Content pruning is the process of removing content that is no longer relevant. Such content could be out-of-date, low performing, or too similar to other content, bringing your search engine rank down. Any content that confuses users or causes them to leave your site should be questioned. By removing ineffective content, you bring focus to your site, improving user experience and SEO.

Bad Content Vs. Content in need of Editing

When content pruning, you may wonder what the difference is between bad content and content that just needs some improvements. The main difference between bad content and editable content is potential.

If a currently ineffective page has the potential to reach the goal you created it for, then it may be worth editing. If the page already has rich content that could be improved, it may be worth bringing it up to date. Sometimes, the problem with a page is less about the content and more about the linkage. A page could be great, but not linked in a way that is reachable by most users and bots. These kinds of pages have room to grow and still be useful.


However, pages that are completely out-of-date and no longer serve a purpose lack potential for expansion, especially if a better page already exists to replace it. Your company may have grown beyond this page, the content no longer relevant or accurate. A bad page could also be seen as useless by your users, despite its original intentions. These kinds of pages are on the chopping block for content pruning.

There are also some pages that are not bad, but do not rank well for special reasons. These pages tend to have content that is misunderstood by the bots because they are unusual in their usage. Pages that are only live for certain parts of the year, or pages that are aimed at very specific parts of your audience could fall into this realm. These are pages that should be hidden rather than removed, as they are useful to your business in certain cases.

Analyzing your Site for Content Pruning

Trying to figure out what pages need cut, edited, or left alone can be tough. The best way to determine what pages need content pruning is to illustrate the big picture of your site’s performance. What pages are performing well? What pages are lacking? Such information can be found through analytics services like Google Analyics 4 and Google Search Console. With analytics services, you can analyze data such as page views, bounce rate, and conversions to see how attractive your pages are. Internal linkage is also an important factor to look at when determining a page’s success, as well as external links, such as social media. How users arrive and respond to your page determines your page’s success.

Want to Learn more?

Carrie Saunder’s upcoming course, “The Converting Website,” will dive into SEO and other important factors that aim to optimize your website. Join the waitlist today to stay up to date on the classes release!

A Closer Look at Universal Analytics & Google Analytics 4

In our previous article, we discussed some of the challenges that we may face when switching from Universal Analytics to Google Analytics 4. Most of these challenges stem from the absence or inclusion of certain features that were different in Universal Analytics. Let’s take a deeper dive into some of the differences that set Universal Analytics and GA4 apart.

When Universal Analytics was created, less than half of the population had smart phones. At that time as well, eCommerce profit was only half of what it is now. With both of those factors increasing over time, marketing and privacy were both heavily impacted. GA4 is designed to handle these changes better than Universal Analytics can. Some key aspects that have changed include privacy concerns, data collection, and general future proofing.

Privacy

Privacy continues to be an important aspect of online life, and GA4 aims to increase its privacy options as compared to Universal Analytics. Some ways that GA4 does this is by making it easier to customize and control collected data. In GA4, you can easily delete data at the request of a user as well as determine how long you want GA4 to store user data before deleting it entirely. You can also turn off the collection of certain data, such as location specific or ad personalization data if desired.

The most notable way GA4 has grown from Universal Analytics’ privacy is through its decision to no longer collect or store IP addresses. In Universal Analytics, IP addresses were collected unless manually set to be anonymized. This push for increased user privacy has resulted in mixed feelings on part some companies. Many marketing efforts relied on tracking IP addresses to identify users and their location for the sake of advertisements. However, with GA4s personal identifiers for users and variety of tools, this shift shouldn’t impact the effectiveness of this tool, being beneficial for both users and eCommerce shops.

Data Collection

As the replacement for Universal Analytics, GA4 aims to better understand the user experience and journey. With the market changing, GA4 has shifted its focus to customer acquisition and retention unlike its predecessor who focused strictly on acquisition. As a result, the metrics GA4 tracks have evolved from Universal Analytics. Behavior, for example, was a collection of metrics included in almost every report in Universal Analytics. Behavior included metrics like bounce rate, page session, and average session duration. These have now been replaced by engagement metrics in GA4, which track engaged sessions, engaged rates, engaged user per session, and other data.

Metrics collected for monetization have also changed between Universal Analytics and GA4. In Universal Analytics, monetization data was found in conversion reports. The data collected on monetization was limited to eCommerce. In GA4, monetization is its own category that includes other streams of revenue, including ad revenue, in-app sales, and eCommerce. While this allows companies to better see where their company is making money, GA4 does not inherently track non-monetary conversions, a metric that was an option in Universal Analytics.

Future Proofing

With GA4 becoming the default Google Analytics tool in July of 2023, it includes a variety of new features that Universal Analytics did not offer. Customization of reports, metrics, and even dashboards offer the ability to track and visualize data to your needs. Machine learning is ingrained in GA4, offering not only insights like Universal Analytics, but also a variety of machine learning tools to explore. Anomaly detection and predictive analytics offer ways to identify key changes in your data and to note patterns that could follow in the future. Overall, we have not yet established the full potential of GA4’s new and improved analytics service.

Want to learn more?

Interested in using GA4 to gain a deeper understanding of your business? Want to learn more about the capabilities that GA4 has to offer? Save your seat today for Carrie Saunders’ “4-Day Google Analytics 4 Boot-camp.” In this bootcamp, Carrie will guide you in getting your GA4 account set up and exploring the many ways you can use it to optimize your business!

Challenges of Switching to GA4

Starting July 1st, 2023, Google’s Universal Analytics will become deprecated. In its place, Google Analytics 4 will become the default analytics tool for tracking engagement and traffic on your websites. With more granular data collection and broader customization, GA4 has a lot to offer. However, the improvements made in GA4 as compared to its predecessor come with some challenges.

The main challenge of switching from Universal Analytics to GA4 is a general change of workflow. Universal Analytics was designed as a collection of default metrics and reports. Much of the data analysis and predefined key factors came out of the box. Overall, this made Universal Analytics easier to use and learn.

GA4, on the other hand, aims to break the limitations of Universal Analytics. With fewer default reports and tracked metrics, GA4’s usefulness can demand customization. Let’s take a look at some of the major changes that we will encounter using GA4.

Metrics

In Universal Analytics, data collected is based on “Sessions” and “Page views.” In a attempt for granularity, GA4 has shifted its data model to be based on “Events.” Due to this shift, certain metrics that were once default in Universal Analytics or either absent or changed in GA4. While these shifts don’t change the usefulness of Google Analytics Services, it may push us to change the way we determine success. Learning new metrics and what they mean for our business will take time.

Reporting

Much like metrics, Universal Analytics and GA4 have varying reports. Universal Analytics had a many types of reports that you could use in order to examine your website. GA4 has condensed those reports into fewer ones while also offering the ability to create customized reports of your own. For example, in the “Acquisition” tab of Universal Analytics, over 30 reports were available. GA4 offers only 3 general categories in its “Acquisition”tab, offering only a handful of reports within them. The rest can be tailored for your business needs. GA4’s breadth of options for customization can present a barrier in terms of its learning curve.

Need help with GA4?

Confused about how to use GA4? Need help understanding GA4’s new layout and reporting system? BCSE is always here to help! Want a more hands-on approach? Save your seat today for Carrie Saunders’ “4-Day Google Analytics 4 Boot-camp.” In this bootcamp, Carrie will guide you in getting your GA4 account set up and exploring the many ways you can use it to optimize your business!

Events in Google Analytics 4

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is a powerful tool that you can use to see how well your website is working for your business. By tracking engagement on your platforms, GA4 offers insight into how users interact with your website. Simple to start and offering a variety of metrics and reports, GA4 can help you optimize your online store.

In our previous article, we explored a few of the metrics we can find illustrated on “Report Snapshot,” under “Reports.” However, another aspect of GA4 that we can use to aid our business decisions is “Events,” a metric that tracks specific interactions on your website.

When we first introduced GA4, we briefly discussed its predecessor, universal Analytics. One important change between Universal Analytics and GA4 is the concept of “Hits” and “Events.” In Universal analytics, interactions are defined as “Hits” and fell into predefined categories that you could track. Broadening the data that you can track, GA4 replaced “Hits” with “Events.” Events allow you to track any interaction in your site and give you the ability to pick and choose what’s important to you.

Types of events in GA4

While you can create events on your own, GA4 comes with a few default events that you can start tracking immediately. You can find these events along with events you create on your own in the “Engagement” tab under “Reports.” Let’s explore a few of categories that GA4 tracks automatically.

Page Views & Sessions

Some events that are automatically tracked follow user traffic on your pages. Whether it be for the first time, or a reoccurring user, GA4 identifies and tracks the pages a user loads, how long they stay on that page, when they leave, and much more. By giving users identifiers, GA4 can collect quality data that can separate a user reloading a page many times from multiple new users visiting your site. Such information can help you identify which pages are attracting users to remain on your site and which pages could be irrelevant or difficult for users to interact with, offering room for improvement.

Transactions & E-commerce

Default events for tracking the exchange of money are available for use in GA4. These events help you note when a user converts to a purchaser, diving into detail about the page and product that led to this development. These events also can track when, for example, a subscription-based customer cancels their subscription. Such data aids in defining what sells well and what products or services are not selling, backing your future business decisions.

Other User Interactions

Other default events that can be found as you start using GA4 are more granular interactions with your page. Downloads, link clicks, video play backs, and scrolling are just a few of the events you can find. Such data can be tied to specific pages, offering detailed data concerning what attracts your customer to dive deeper into your website. With a better understanding of your customers, you can improve customer experience and increase the conversion rate of your online store.

Want to Learn More?

Interested in using GA4 to gain a deeper understanding of your business? Want to learn more about the capabilities that GA4 has to offer? Save your seat today for Carrie Saunders’ “4-Day Google Analytics 4 Boot-camp.” In this bootcamp, Carrie will guide you in getting your GA4 account set up and exploring the many ways you can use it to optimize your business!

Measuring Success: The Different Types of Business Income

In previous articles, we have explored some of the tools you can use to analyze how well your website is doing. Page views, clicks, and search engine rankings are ways to measure the success of your online business, but what other ways can we look at? One way to see how well your business is doing is to take a closer look at your incoming revenue.

The fact that your business’ income reflects its success is an obvious statement. However, dividing your income into different groups can help tell a more detailed story about your success. Let’s take a look at three different types of business income.

Operating Income

Operating Income is any revenue made from your business’ core activities. Sales of products and services make up the majority of this category. This category of income is the best representation of how well your company is doing. It illustrates the efficiency of your operation, and thus may be used by shareholders and potential investors to assess how profitable your business is.

Non-Operating Income

Non-Operating Income is income gained outside of the core activities of your business. Rather than sales, this income stream tends to be from passive sources. Rent, interest on an investment, royalties, and other forms of passive income fall into this category. While your business makes non-operating income, the indirect nature of this income stream makes it inaccurate when depicting the success of your core business.

Exceptional Income

Exceptional Income is income that you only earn once. Income from situations such as legal action or selling company assets fall into this category since they are not scheduled. Since these flows of income are random, it is best to not include this kind of gain in your total revenue when evaluating the success of your business.

The Bigger Picture

While there are a variety of incomes your business can earn, a gain is a gain! Interested in earning more income passively? One way you can gain more from your business is sharing your knowledge with others via a digital course. Check out Amy Porterfield’s “Course Confident,” a live 5-day bootcamp that teaches you how to start your own course and earn additional revenue!

Making Your Company Stand Out

One major challenge we encounter in the e-commerce industry is the sheer amount of competition we must face. In a sea of options, how do we make our businesses stand out amongst the rest? Let’s take a look at just a few of the ways you can make your company appear unique and enticing.

Fill a Void in your Industry  

One way to stand out in your industry is to try to fulfill a niche that isn’t as commonly addressed. This could be a certain type of product or a unique method of service to satisfy the customers demand in your industry. This niche could also be developed in your approach to how you interact with customers, such as your website, delivery methods, and overall expressed mission.  There are a variety of aspects where your company can different from your competitors. Pondering the “why” of your company, the initial goal for your business, can help identify places where your company already is uniquely yours.

Be Consistent in your Goals & Work

Customers love consistency. Being able to have expectations that are fulfilled reliably by a business keeps customers coming back for more. Reliability, quality, and convenience are just a few of the qualities customers may value. Whether it be the ease of use of your website, the check out process, or customer support, there are many aspects that can be worked on to create a sense of expertise and stability that will draw reoccurring customers.

Show you are more than just  a company

Sometimes, the characteristics that make customers choose one company over another is not necessarily the product itself. Instead, customers may value the people who work and run that business and the goals they are trying to achieve. Company culture can impact whether or not customers see your company as just a business or see a group of real people working towards a shared vision. Having a strong mission statement and sharing your story can make you stand out and entice long term customers to choose your company over others.

How can I make my company stand out more?

Making your company feel unique can be hard. It is a journey to discover your company’s “thing” or “special sauce” which may not always be obvious. Amy Porterfield can help! Amy is an entrepreneur that aims to help other aspiring business owners reach their goals. Through podcasts and online courses, she helps business owners find the resources they need for success. Check out Amy Porterfield’s free guided activity “What’s Your Thing?” to find what makes your company special.

The Effectiveness of Email Marketing

There are many ways to attract customers to your business. In previous articles, we explored the ways quality web design and search engines optimization can turn visitors into customers. However, another aspect of bring traffic to your site is advertisement. One of the most powerful, yet simple methods of advertisement is email marketing.

Is Email Marketing Still Profitable?

When you hear email, you may wonder if email marketing is still useful. With social media now playing large roles in advertising businesses, you may assume that email lists are outdated. However, that is not the case. Email lists continue to be one of the most profitable methods of gaining customers.

Why is Email Marketing important?

It’s Cost Effective

While we can advertise our businesses in many ways, email marketing is an easy and often free method to get our product out there. Even email marketing software tends to be very affordable. Email Marketing offers some of the highest conversions rates when compared to other advertising methods, such as social media. This makes email marketing an option that gets the biggest bang for your buck, generating better results than its counterparts.

It’s Easy to Implement

Bringing traffic to your site can sometimes involve complicated software that can be hard to use and implement. Email on the other hand is simple and, for the most part, universal. A large part of the world uses email, which makes it not only easy to use as a business, but easy for customers to understand as well. Its accessible via multiple devices, scalable as your company grows its email list, and even measurable in terms of its effectiveness.

It Aids Customer Engagement & Retention

Part of creating traffic on your site is encouraging people who have already become customers to use your business’ products and services again in the future. Emails is a non-invasive method of reminding people that your business exist and has a lot to offer. Sharing information about your products via email not only reminds and educates people about your business, but also could compel them to purchase.

It Builds Relationships & Credibility

One aspect of your business that separates it from other competitors is your brand. A good email illustrates your values and mission, whether that be shared through your products, blogs, or personal stories. Your brand may be what keeps people coming to your business, making email a great way to remind them of what makes your company special. Email is also an easy way to share customer feedback, like the success stories of your products or services. They remind customers of the quality and expertise of your business.

Where can I start in using Email Marketing for my Business?

Want to learn more about email marketing? Amy Porterfield can help! Amy is an entrepreneur that aims to help other aspiring business owners reach their goals. Through podcasts and online courses, she helps business owners find the resources they need for success. Check out Amy Porterfield’s free guided activity “7 Places to Share Your Lead Magnet to Grow Your Email List With Quality Leads” to get started with your email marketing journey!

A Mindset for Success

In recent articles, we have discussed many ways that you can improve your business through optimizing your website. However, there are other factors that are key to success. One such factor is your mindset. How do you approach the changes and obstacles of life and your industry? Your mindset can determine how effective you are at dealing with the daily challenges of your company and its overall success. While mindsets can vary from person to person, lets look at some common business mindsets that can help you reach your goals.

Believe in Yourself & Your Company

Success in any endeavor takes time and patience. In order to remain resilient to the ups and downs of life, you must believe in your company and its potential. The same goes for yourself. Many people may experience a sense of imposter syndrome when facing the challenges that come with running their own business. They may feel they are somehow inadequate as an entrepreneur, or even feel that they don’t deserve the fruits of their labor. Avoiding such thoughts and remembering your potential will allow you to continue carving a path towards your goals.

Have a Plan to Reach Your Vision

In order to develop a plan, you need a vision to work towards. Where do you want to be personally? What are the goals you have for your company at the moment? Once you have those set, you can start working on a plan to reach your own personalized idea of success. As with any journey, your path wont always be easy. Thinking about the possible situations that could happen in the future and how you would deal with them can help prepare you for such hardships. Whether the obstacle is big or small, approach each problem with your vision in mind.

Keep Learning & Growing

One thing to keep in mind as your company grows is that your goals are not stagnant. Once you complete the goals you set out to achieve in the beginning, remember that you and your company can continue to grow beyond them. Trying new things and expanding your vision allow you to grow not only as a company, but as a person. If you believe in your own potential, you will accomplish more. Even if new challenges arise, another thing to keep in mind is that you have learned and accomplished so much already. Failure may occur at times, but you are not falling back down to where you first started, but onto the accomplishments you already achieved.

Failure is Necessary for Success

As mentioned in previous sections, failure is inevitable when pursuing new endeavors. While it may appear that other entrepreneurs are talented or just plain lucky, they were not born that way. They tried and failed multiple times to arrive at where they are today. Don’t be afraid of failure. Failure is what builds success. You learn from your mistakes and become better every day. Create your own sense of luck through optimizing your actions and decisions based on the obstacles your have struggled with.

Achieving My Own Success

Sometimes it may be hard to define exactly what your personal idea of success is. The same can go for identifying your current mindset. Amy Porterfield can help! Amy is an entrepreneur that aims to help other aspiring business owners reach their goals. Through podcasts and online courses, she helps business owners find the resources they need for success. Check out Amy Porterfield’s free guided activity “Working Better Than before: Redfining your Unique Vision of Success” to explore your vision.  

Creating Trust: Turning Visitors into Customers

There are many aspects of your website that encourage visitors to become customers of your business. One thing that these factors have in common is that they create a sense of trust between you and your customer. When you meet someone for the first time, the impression you create can determine if the individual wants to pursue a relationship with you. Creating a sense of competency, transparency, and relatability can go a long way in attracting customers to your business. Let’s explore some of the ways you can create trust through your business’ website.

Competency

Language

When a potential customer arrives at your site, they want to feel like you are an expert on your product. However, this requires that you not only understand your product, but also understand your customer. Avoid the use of jargon or complicated words in favor of clear, simple language that your customers can understand. You also want to emphasize how your product will improve their quality of life. Keeping your text focused on your customer will help keep them engaged. This will not only suggest to customers that you understand them and your product, but that you don’t need to hide behind complex language and irrelevant details.

Good Experiences

Another factor that suggests competency is utilizing customer stories to advertise your product. While we can say a lot about our products, our words may be considered biased to some customers. Text reviews, photographs of customers using your product, or even videos can help potential customers gain trust in your services. Make these stories visible on your website by sharing them in high traffic areas and near the products in question.

Visibility

Competency can go beyond your webpage. Using search engine optimizing (SEO) to your advantage can make your business more visible to potential customers. As discussed in our previous article, your position in search queries is determined by your rank. A higher rank indicates that both search engines and users find your site useful and relevant. We can further show how well our products are doing by showing our ratings or reviews in search results as well.

Transparency

Security

Keeping your customers informed on your company’s practices creates a sense of transparency. This can make customers more comfortable with your business. One way we can do this is by adding security seals to our pages. These seals are visual logos that link to the certificates that protects your site. Having security seals on your website makes it clear that you value your customer’s digital safety, encouraging trust. Another visual representation of security that people notice is the small lock that pops up in the address bar when a site is HTTPS enabled. Small things like these create good first impressions and impact your SEO ranking in a positive manner.

Location

Another small change that impacts your customers’ trust can be found in your contact page. While not applicable for all companies, including your physical store address can be to your benefit. Knowing that there is a physical location can reassure customers and offer them a different avenue to purchase your products as well as address questions or issues they may have.

Checkout Process

What happens during the checkout process of your site can impact the trust your customers have in your company. The uncertainty of how much an item will cost after tax, how long it could take to arrive, or if there will be certain options available can make potential customers wary to buy your product. Being forthright with such details in the beginning can ease such concerns. Explaining what will happen during the checkout process allows customers to understand what expectations they should have. If your checkout process has no surprises, your customers are more likely to feel comfortable enough to complete their purchase.

Relatability

Your Story

Last but not least, customers can at times feel like all companies care about is money. To avoid this perception, try sharing your story with your customers. What is your company’s mission and goals? How do you want to grow? These are aspects of life that we can all relate to, in one way or another. It establishes your company as not just a logo, but a place where people work and are trying to achieve things. Customers can find this relatable and humanizing, making them more willing to begin a relationship with your company.

Want to learn more?

We at BCSE are always here to help! If you are curious about how you can further create trust on your website, contact us! Carrie’s upcoming course, “The Converting Website”, will also explore many ways you can improve the conversion of your online business. Join the waitlist today to stay up to date with its release!