Attire Accessories -Jul/Aug 2018 (Issue 71)

108 ATTIRE Trying to optimise a website for organic search results can sometimes be likened to playing a game of cards for high stakes in which nobody will tell you the rules or what you forfeit if you lose. Google, especially, loves to come out with half-truths, innuendo and contradiction with its ever-changing policies for both organic and paid search programmes – it’s sometimes hard for even seasoned online marketing professionals to know who to believe. It’s no wonder the majority of new e-commerce retailers I speak to are nervous about online marketing, especially those who have been convinced by some of the shadier members of our profession that Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is some kind of voodoo that only those who have spent years in meditation (probably at the top of a mountain, cross-legged and surrounded by chanting monks) can perform. Whilst it’s true that working in the online marketing industry can be ‘challenging’ – read: mind-bendingly frustrating – at times, I’m here to tell you that SEO is common sense. Anybody can optimise and promote a website, assuming a willingness to learn and the time to do it.There. I’ve said it! No mystic ninja throwing star skills required. There is a quite huge caveat to the above statement when you are optimising an e-commerce website. You’ve got to think not like a retailer but like a consumer at every point in the optimisation and promotion process. A large portion of planning SEO strategy involves finding out what people are searching for and want because there is no point in ranking for what nobody is looking for! David Fairhurst looks at the importance of focused category names for e-commerce Word count