Optimizing your eBay store and listing pages is critical – why? Because it will drive more traffic to your store, more potential buyers to your listings, and that means more sales for you. Click on the links below for invaluable insider information on how to make your store a stronger selling tool for you, so you can blast past your competition and improve your eBay sales.
Q: What does “optimizing” my store mean?
A: Having a great eBay store design is an excellent step in building branding, trust, and upsell opportunities. However, in order for potential buyers to see your great new site and fantastic listings, you’ve got to get traffic to your store! This is where SEO – Search Engine Optimization – comes into play.
Optimizing your store means your store is set up in a way that makes it more likely for you to come up in a buyer search query, either through the eBay search or through a general Google search.
Q: Who needs to optimize their eBay store?
A: Everybody who owns an eBay store should take steps to make sure it is set up for maximum traffic!
Q: What’s the ideal time to optimize my store?
A: Right away! You can optimize your eBay store settings with or without a custom storefront design.
Q: Doesn’t eBay optimize my store for me automatically?
A: Yes and no. eBay will fill in some (but not all) of your store’s SEO settings automatically, based on keywords it picks up from your listing titles. However, these are auto-generated by a computer and do not take into account which products/keywords are most popular in your selling category or most relevant to the products you most want to push. A generic computer program does not do as good a job as someone who actually knows your product line and can do some basic research into which keywords and phrases are most likely to be used to find your products.
Q: Can you optimize my store for me?
A: Yes, we sure can! When we install a custom eBay store design, we include several store optimization steps automatically and at no charge (see details below). We also offer an advanced SEO package that goes much further to implement every possible optimization feature available on eBay. Click here for details and pricing.
Q: How much optimization is available on eBay?
A: Having a store on the eBay marketplace is a little bit different from having your own eCommerce store, as you’ve probably already noticed – eBay has a lot of say in what you can list for sale, how you present your listings, and what types of features are available in your eBay store.
Fortunately, they have built a lot of optimization settings into your eBay store settings. You can write in a store description (up to 250 characters), meta titles and meta keywords for your store homepage, all of your store support pages (such as about us, policies, etc.), and all of your top-level category pages.
Q: Where do I go to optimize my store settings?
A: Log into your eBay account and go to: My eBay > Manage My Store > Store Settings. There are several places throughout these pages where you can add/optimize your storefront. PLEASE NOTE: If you have a custom store design from NinjaTemplates, we have already implemented some store optimization for you as part of your installation; do not change anything in your store layout settings or you may break your store display.
Q: Can I just write in meta tags into the store HTML code like I do on my eCommerce store?
A: No, this doesn’t work on eBay like it would on an eCommerce site. eBay has its own meta tags for every page of the eBay site, and writing your own further down on the page would just be ignored by the search engines. You need to utilize the SEO tag input fields that are provided by eBay in your store admin pages. If you hire an SEO company to do your store optimization for you, it is very important that you select someone who is an eBay expert and knows exactly what works (and doesn’t work) on eBay.
Q: Can I add SEO meta tags to my individual eBay listings?
A: No, eBay does not permit the use of meta tags on listing pages – in fact, they will block listings that include meta tags in the code.
However, this doesn’t mean your listing pages can’t be optimized! eBay’s database will auto-generate your listing optimization settings, based on the keywords it finds in your listing titles and descriptions, with special emphasis on the titles. It is very important that you maximize your listing titles so your items can be found among all the competition. Click here for details on how to best optimize your listing titles.
Q: Is any SEO included with my eBay store design package from NinjaTemplates?
A: Yes, absolutely! We recognize that there’s little point in having a fabulous design if no one can find your store – and we include several key optimization steps while coding and installing your store design into eBay, including:
Q: Can I do more optimization even after all of the above has been implemented?
A: Yes, you can. While we include all of the above for free, there are additional steps that can be taken to optimize the store, which require implementation of meta description and keywords (see details below). Because of the amount of research required to implement the best possible keywords/phrases for your selling category, this is not something that we offer free of charge but we do offer as an add-on Advanced SEO Package (see below for details), or you can implement these steps yourself through your eBay store admin pages.
Q: Can you give me the top steps I can take to optimize my eBay store?
A: Yes, these are the steps you will want to take to optimize your eBay store settings – keep in mind that some of these steps may take a few hours of research time before you begin inserting info to eBay. You definitely don’t want to rush this process, the proper research and testing are crucial to your success!
IMPORTANT: when you make changes to your store’s keyword settings, it takes up to 30-60 days for the search engines to re-index your store, so give it some time before you assess the results of your updates.
Q: What steps can I take to optimize my eBay listings?
A: Your listing pages will be ranked on eBay based on several factors, including the keywords in your listing titles, the popularity of the items/brands you are selling, how many competitors you have in your selling category, how long you have been selling on eBay, your feedback rating and DSR ratings, and other factors. Here are some steps you can take to optimize your listings rankings:
Depending on the type of eBay store subscription you have, you probably have access to store traffic reports. You can find them here:
My eBay > Manage My Store > Reports > Traffic Reports
These reports will give you all kinds of valuable information about how well your store is doing, so it’s a good idea to check them every month or two.
Traffic / Hits Rate
The number of people who are visiting your store on a daily, weekly or mothly bases is the “traffic” rating. If your traffic ratings are low, this means you need to do some SEO work so your store is better positioned for more visitors to find it. When reading your traffic numbers, it is best to compare year-over-year (e.g., how am I doing this week in December, versus how I did this same week last December?). Also keep in mind that store traffic can be influenced by outside factors such as overall web performance, eBay performance, number of competitors in the market, time of year, recent feedback/DSR rating changes on your account, etc. Check to make sure your eBay account is in good standing and your ratings are as high as possible. Spend a few minutes reading one of the eBay member/support discussion boards to find out if overall sales are up or down for all sellers, or just for you. Stay on top of the trends in your marketplace and make sure your store SEO settings are taking into account the top selling brands/products in your category.
Sales / Sell Through Rate
The number of people who view your store and/or listings and then make a purchase is your “sell-through” rating. If you are getting good traffic/hits, but your sell-through rating is low, this means you should re-examine how your listings are being presented. Are your product photos large and clear? Are your titles and descriptions accurate? Are your prices competitive with other sellers’ prices? Are your terms of sale supportive and non-threatening? Are your competitors offering promotions such as free shipping or free returns that you might want to consider implementing?
Surveying For Customer Feedback
One step we highly recommend taking, but few sellers do, is to survey your buyers to find out what you are doing right and what you could improve. Set up a simple email survey and send it to 20 of your customers (with their permission, of course). Ask them directly: Do you like the way our products are presented? What do we do well? What could we do better? Ask them very specific questions, such as: do you find the color scheme of our site appealing? Do you find the layout easy to navigate? Is it easy or hard to find the products you want in our store? Do you feel the descriptions are accurate and appealing? Would you prefer different payment/shipping/return terms? Most people want to be heard, and will gladly share their opinions with you. You may be very surprised at the valuable information you get – for free – directly from your target market!
If all of the above info seems a little too much to take in, or you find you are simply busy with taking care of your listings, sales, shipments, and customer service, simply drop us an email and we can set you up with our Advanced ebay SEO Package.
Our Advanced eBay SEO Package includes:
Time frame to complete the research and implementation for the Advanced eBay SEO Package is 5-7 business days. Cost is $100. Click here to set up your store optimization package now!
IMPORTANT: when changes are made to your store’s keyword settings, it takes up to 30-60 days for the search engines to re-index your store, so give it some time before you assess the results of your updates.
Now that your store is customized and optimized, you’ll be ready to start promoting it for even better sales! We recommend the following:
If you have questions for eBay, you can contact them via their customer support page here: http://ocsnext.ebay.com/ocs/cuhome.
If you have questions not covered here, or need personal assistance with any of your design process steps, just let us know and we’ll be happy to help. Thank you very much for choosing NinjaTemplates for your custom eBay design work!
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