Merch Hero’s Christmas cut-off dates!

Merch Hero’s Christmas cut-off dates!

Merch Hero’s Christmas cut-off dates!

There are only 5 weeks left until Christmas, and it’s high time for you to launch your holiday-themed campaign! 


The Merch Hero team has worked extremely hard to give you as much time as possible for you to run your Christmas campaigns while still guaranteeing your buyers will get their products by the 24th of December! Check out 2019’s cut-off dates below: 

Please take the  dates above into consideration when planning your x-mas campaigns, as production and delivery this year is divided into different types of products and geographies (in order to be as optimized and broad as possible), and they’re all following the GMT time!


What are you waiting for to launch your holiday campaign at www.merchhero.io

Moteefe – Let’s do business, together

Merch Hero’s Base Costs

Merch Hero’s Base Costs

Merch Hero’s Base Costs

Merch Hero is now here, a world-class integration for your e-Commerce stores! 

We offer the best prices, the best quality products, the best rates for tracked shipping, and of course, the best platform where you can find all the information you need at the tip of your fingers!

We believe that, in order for us to be the best, we need to be offering you the lowest prices in the European and North American markets which, as they rely on our globalized supply chain, may vary as products in different markets may be produced by different suppliers. To make your lives easier, we compiled the base costs* for each product in our portfolio! Check them out below:

FULFILMENT USA (USD) FULFILMENT EU (EUR)
Product name Weight (grams) Base costs Shipping Base costs Shipping
Unisex Hoodie 600 $13.99 $6.00 €11.99 €7.00
Kid’s Hoodie 400 $13.99 $6.00 €11.99 €7.00
Unisex Sweatshirt 400 $10.99 $6.00 €10.99 €7.00
Kids’ Sweatshirt 400 $10.99 $6.00 €10.99 €7.00
Premium Men’s T-shirt 200 $8.99 $4.00 €8.99 €5.00
Men’s Tanktop 200 $9.99 $4.00 €8.99 €5.00
Premium Women’s T-shirt 200 $8.99 $4.00 €8.99 €5.00
Women’s Racerback Tanktop 200 $9.99 $4.00 €8.99 €5.00
Flowy Tank 200 $12.99 $4.00 €11.99 €5.00
Men’s Longleeve 200 $8.99 $4.00 €9.99 €5.00
Classic Men’s T-shirt 200 $5.99 $4.00 €5.99 €5.00
Classic Women’s T-shirt 200 $6.99 $4.00 €6.99 €5.00
Kids’ T-shirt 200 $8.99 $4.00 €8.99 €5.00
Women’s Longsleeve 200 $8.99 $4.00 €9.99 €5.00
Men’s V-Neck 200 $8.99 $4.00 €8.99 €5.00
Women’s V-Neck 200 $8.99 $4.00 €8.99 €5.00
Baby T-shirt 200 $8.99 $4.00 €8.99 €5.00
Babygrow 200 $8.99 $4.00 €8.99 €5.00
Canvas (20 x 30) 900 $18.99 $9.00 €15.99 €10.00
Canvas (40 x 40) 900 $20.99 $9.00 €17.99 €10.00
Canvas (60 x 40) 900 $23.99 $9.00 €20.99 €10.00
Canvas (60 x 60) 900 $27.99 $9.00 €22.99 €10.00
Canvas (75 x 50) 900 $34.99 $9.00 €29.99 €10.00
White Mug (11oz) 200 $4.99 $5.00 €4.99 €6.00
Black Mug (11 oz) 200 $5.99 $5.00 €5.99 €6.00
Magic Mug (11 oz) 200 $8.99 $5.00 €8.99 €6.00
iPhone case 200 $6.99 $4.00 €7.99 €5.00
Samsung case 200 $6.99 $4.00 €7.99 €5.00

We believe these prices will enable you to achieve higher profits and scale your online business!

Are you interested in starting to sell? Don’t hesitate in doing so! Head over to www.merchhero.io and launch your campaign today!

Moteefe – Let’s do business, together

Announcement of Merch Hero

Announcement of Merch Hero

Announcement of Merch Hero

We’re proud to tell you that Merch Hero is now available! A world-class solution for your Shopify store (and for other platforms soon), which relies on Moteefe’s  great supplier network!

Here are the top 3 reasons why you should use Merch Hero for your e-commerce store:

Firstly, thanks to our global scale we bring you the best base costs available, allowing you to generate higher profits and scale your online business!

Secondly, Merch Hero offers a wide selection of premium products, produced in the USA or the EU depending on the buyer’s location, which ensure cheaper and faster deliveries, turning buyers into brand ambassadors! All orders will be sent with tracked shipping! 

We also have a team dedicated to supporting you and your needs 24/7, regardless of where in the world you might be! Just send an email to support@merchhero.io. 

What are you waiting for to test out this solution, which will for sure boost your sales? 

Don’t forget to watch our tutorial video to learn more on how to get started, and afterwards go to http://www.merchhero.io to get started!

Moteefe – Let’s do business, together

What Is Dropshipping?

What Is Dropshipping?

What Is Dropshipping?

Dropshipping is a hot business opportunity right now. If you’ve been searching online about starting a business, then you’ve probably seen some things about dropshipping. Maybe you’ve even seen “rags to riches” dropship stories.

While dropshipping is a great opportunity for a lot of reasons, the truth about dropshipping is that it’s not easy. Just like any business, it takes hard work and dedication.

You need to find good products ideas with good suppliers behind those products. You need to understand how to create effective marketing campaigns. And you need to know how to manager your numbers.

What Is A Dropshipping Business?

Dropshipping is a business model that takes wholesale items and sells them as part of your store for a profit. You don’t make the items, you don’t ship the items. You are responsible for branding and marketing the items only, and generating sales.

This is a popular method for starting an online business for many reasons:

  • No inventory risk
  • No need to create your own product
  • Requires very little startup money
  • Access to lots of software to help the research and marketing process

The model is simple in it’s most basic form. You find products from a wholesale supplier, and then you place those products on your store with your own branding. Once you have a store with products, you choose which products you want to market using either free or paid traffic strategies.

Print On Demand is a form of dropshipping. The big difference between the two is that Print On Demand suppliers print custom designs on the wholesale products you want to sell. Dropshipping you are just selling the product as the manufacturer makes it.

Dropshipping Seems Simple, But Is It?

It’s clear why dropshipping is so popular. And there are many successful dropshippers that make it sound so simple. However, don’t be fooled. Dropshipping is simple, but not easy.

The challenge that most people have is choosing the right niche and understanding how to find products. You cannot create a competitive edge without figuring this out.

Choosing a Niche

Starting with a niche helps develop your brand and create a loyal following of customers that know what to expect from your store.

A niche is just an audience of people. Say, for example, people who love cats. There are products for people who love cats. For example, cat beds, cat toys, cat grooming, shirts for cat owners, etc.

Niche selection is challenging. You want to find a passionate audience that will actually spend money on the products you sell them. Here are some niche guidelines:

  • Large audience size
  • Easy to target on social media
  • Existing competition

These are just niche guidelines, not product guidelines. Choose a niche large enough to make money, easy to reach on social media, that has existing competition to prove market demand.

It doesn’t need to be more complicated that that. Dating, Yoga, Cooking, Gardening, Gaming- these are all examples of large niches that anyone could enter.

This is just the first step. You identify a niche, then you start researching product ideas.

Finding Product Ideas

Product research should be methodical, not a guessing game. This is where most people mess up. They don’t put enough time into their product research.

There are plenty of methods out there for product research, but here are three true guidelines:

  • Passion
  • Problem
  • Pride

People buy things they are passionate about. People buy things that solve problems. And people buy things that boost their confidence or ego.

Your product does not need to fit all 3, but it should be focused around satisfying at least one.

Dropshipping is generally about products that solve problems for people. Print On Demand is generally about products that speak to people’s passion or pride.

Either way, most people don’t get it right the first time. Winning with dropshipping requires consistency. You need to constantly be searching for unique product ideas from big sites like amazon.com and aliexpress.com.

One Product Stores

A one product store combines the niche and the product into one cohesive storefront. This is a great way to start a dropshipping business.

You don’t need to have a lot of products or look like a big store to win. If you can find one unique product that solves a problem for people, then you can create an entire store around that one product.

To find good ideas for one product store, look at Google Trends and Google Adwords. See what types of things are trending, and what people are searching for in Google. Then go look through suppliers to find if there are any innovative product ideas you can market.

People search Google when they have a problem or want to know/buy/do something. So Google can give you a lot of great insight into good product ideas.

Creating a Competitive Advantage

The problem with dropshipping is everyone has access to the same products. If everyone is selling the same item, what makes yours different?

You need to find a unique advantage to win with dropshipping. This is one of the single biggest reasons dropshipping store fail; they don’t give people the right reasons to say yes to buying from them.

There are some technical things to keep in mind:

  • Secure website with reputable shopping cart
  • Great user experience – load speed, page layout, ease of navigation
  • Professional brand

Without any of those, people won’t even stay on your website. But that still isn’t enough to get them to buy.

To create buying desire, you need to be unique. That could be your product, your store, your sales process, your delivery process, etc. There are many ways. Customer service is one of them. Great content is another one.

Product descriptions are one of the best ways to set your store apart. Use powerful and descriptive language, and make sure to illustrate the benefits of your product. Understand the main thing your product does for people, and then use your product descriptions to channel that desire into a purchase.

Another way to create competitive advantage is your marketing. Creating great content, having a well thought out email list, introducing bundle offers, retargeting your visitors with multiple types of ads, collecting reviews- these are all ways you can stand out.

Building A Brand

Remember that your brand is more than your logo, website design, or product. Your brand is the feeling people get when they think about your company and your products. Building a brand takes some time, but doesn’t need to take forever when done strategically.

While branding does start with the look of your website, including colors and images, it has more to do with the user experience. Good branding creates emotional connections to the company.

Think about the companies you use in your own life. Do you love your cable company or do you just deal with them? If someone different came along, would you switch brands?

Now think about the iPhone. People have waited in lines for the new iPhones. In fact, people may not even be able to responsibly afford a new iPhone, and still find a way to purchase it. That type of loyalty and desire is far more than just a phone. That’s the power of a great brand.

Pros and Cons of Drop Shipping

Business owners must always look at both the pros and cons of any business situation before making a final decision. While there are many pros to dropshipping and Print On Demand services, it isn’t a solution for everyone in e-commerce sales.

Pros of Drop Shipping

Consider these pros of drop shipping and print on demand e-commerce solutions:

  • Quick startup: With a Shopify, a PayPal account, a supplier, and a few plugins, you can have an operating business within a day
  • Minimal overhead: Other than the paid website services such as e-commerce platforms, SSL certificates, and hosting, there are no required overhead costs such as utilities or staff
  • Less capital requirement: Without having to buy in bulk and store it, new business owners are able to move products and generate cash flow without major capital outlay
  • Expansive product selection: Suppliers are eager to find great new platforms to sell more products giving e-commerce stores lots of opportunities to diversify product lines
  • Scalability: Growing is contingent on the marketing and fulfillment efforts of the website owner, adding staff or virtual assistants for smart growth

Cons of Drop Shipping

Consider these cons of drop shipping and print on demand e-commerce solutions:

  • Reduced margins: Margins are contingent on the cost of buying products on-demand as well as the competition undercutting pricing to capture market share
  • Inventory problems: Tracking the availability of items for sale on your website and confirming that suppliers have adequate stock is difficult and can force refunds of products bought that can’t be fulfilled
  • Dropship Suppliers’ errors: Many products come from overseas fulfilled at large distribution centers where language barriers and inefficient processes lead to the wrong items getting delivered to customers
  • Confusing shipping: Shipping times, durations, vendors, and costs all vary from supplier to supplier which can inflate shipping costs to customers or lead to confusion for dropshipping website owners.

How To Choose Suppliers

New dropshipping website owners need to consider how they choose their suppliers. It may seem easy to jump onto AliExpress dropshipping and go with any of the suppliers in that marketplace. After all, the platform is simple and free to use. However, many “suppliers” on these sites are secondary suppliers tacking on their own markup and extending the time required to fulfill orders because they need to get it from the source.

As you choose a dropshipping wholesale supplier or print on demand company, make sure you are able to connect with a person at the company. Ask a lot of questions about the products, where they are sources, where the manufacturing plant is, and the time frames from purchase to delivery. If you cannot speak with someone before you become a merchant for them, chances are you won’t get any help if a problem arises with a client order.

Considerations when choosing a wholesaler supplier for dropshipping products:

 

  • How extensive is their product line?
  • Where are the products manufactured? Where is the fulfillment center?
  • How much inventory does the fulfillment center maintain?
  • What shipping services do they use?
  • What are the costs and timeframes for shipping? Are there breaks for multiple items?
  • How long to fulfill orders?
  • Is tracking information for shipping provided? (If so, is this provided to you and the buyer or just you?)
  • What is the return policy?
  • How are order errors addressed?
  • Are the price reductions for hitting certain sales numbers?

Dealing with Supply Chain Problems

It’s always smart to order a few products yourself to test the supply chain before spending a lot of money on marketing. Order the products you intend to sell, and see if what you get is what you expected to receive.

It’s important to find out about poor quality products, lengthy shipping times, and customer service issues before your customers do.

If you took the time to properly choose your wholesale distributor, you will most likely pre-empt major supply chain issues. However, be aware of orders made on your site and where they are in the fulfillment process. Being proactive and contacting a customer when you become aware of a problem such as long delivery time, is better than letting the customer wonder what happened to their order.

Margins and Making a Profit

Making money is the name of the game. When it comes to dropshipping websites and print on demand services, there are those who move a lot of product, thus have a million in revenues who aren’t making any money. This is because their margins are too low as they work to attract buyers from competitors. They aren’t able to make enough on every sale to cover all operating costs including hosting, marketing, and service.

There are two types of margin you have to consider when looking at the markup of any product you sell: gross profit and net profit. Gross profit is the profit on any given item, meaning it is the difference between your retail price or revenues and cost of goods sold (COGS). Gross profit doesn’t consider anything beyond COGS and revenues (excluding sales tax). Net profit subtracts administrative, sales, taxes, and marketing costs from the net profits. If you aren’t considering net profits, you could be turning a lot of product inventory without making money.

As a rough example, think about the cost your wholesaler charges for a print on demand hoodie: $12.99. If you sell the hoodie for $19.99, you have a $7 gross profit on this. However, if your prorated costs for administration and marketing are $3 per item sold regardless of the gross profit, you now have $4 net profit on the hoodie. If you run a sale on hoodies for $15.99, you would have $3 gross profit but a $1 net loss on the sale of each hoodie.

Choosing A Markup Strategy

This is how you price your products. You receive the item at a wholesale cost, and then you add a “markup” to the item for resale on your store. That markup is your profit.

Some new business owners will choose the same markup strategy for every product. But this is not a great strategy. You should price your products strategically.

First, consider the product you are selling. If you only have one product, then that one. If you have multiple products on your store, the one you are advertising. You want your markup on your primary product to follow this formula:

Product Price = Cost of Goods Sold + Target Cost Per Action + Profit Margin

The two variables you know are Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) and your Target Cost Per Action (CPA). Your Target CPS is how much you can spend to acquire a customer with marketing.

Your COGS is the price your supplier gives you. And by looking at similar prices products online, you can determine a reasonable amount you can charge for your product. Just go to Google Shopping.

So if you have COGS of $15 and your product price point is market value at $30, then you have a margin of only $15 for your CPA and profit. To make $5 profit per sale, your target CPA needs to be $10.

You can adjust these numbers however you want. But ultimately you want to find a product with enough margin that will allow you to scale a business, because you will incur other costs as you grow. Like hiring a team.

You also need to consider shipping costs. Will you charge for shipping or give free shipping?

Free shipping on stores just means you have to mark your product up to absorb the cost of shipping on your item. This can be done on small, light items because they are cheap to ship. And can help you sell more because of free shipping.

If your product requires more expensive shipping, but your cost is set by market, then you may have to charge for shipping. For example, a basic t-shirt costs $7 to print and $4 to ship. A reasonable price is $20 to sell. Therefore you have a $9 only, and that doesn’t include marketing costs. So you likely need to charge your customers $4 for shipping to keep your margin, because most probably won’t buy a $24 t-shirt.

If You Make It, You Must Market

You need to market your products. It’s that simple.

If you aren’t telling people to go to your website through conversations or advertising, then nobody will ever buy anything.

You don’t need to spend a ton of money on advertising to get started, but you do need to put time and effort in to make it work for your store.

How to market your dropshippring products:

  • Join groups (online and in-person) and participate: don’t focus on sales in the group as you should focus on being active and become an expert resource.
  • List items on Amazon and Google: help the search engines help you by registering your store and products in the right places
  • Optimize your website and build content: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) requires understanding what your target audience is searching online and building credibility with the search engines that you are the legitimate and best resource
  • Advertise: social media and search engine advertising is highly targeted and affordable

It’s up to new e-commerce website owners to determine exactly how much they want to devote to marketing and advertising. Because this is a low-overhead business entry, many people fall into the trap of thinking it is a no-cost business.

If you don’t want to spend actual dollars at the start, you’ll need to do more sweat equity work. However, if you want things to scale, earmark a designated percentage of revenues to go back into marketing.

One of the great things about dropshipping solutions is the automation that you can incorporate into the entire process. Automation still requires oversight. You are the business owner and the customers expect service from you when things go wrong – and there will be times where things will go wrong.

Return Policies

Returns happen and some of the most successful retailers are known for great return policies. Costco and REI have pretty much anything goes return policies for up to 12 months. While this isn’t likely going to be your return policy, you want to have a clearly defined one.

Your return policy should be written and noted in the sales process through your shopping store so customers have the right expectations. But don’t just set a return policy based on what you think is good customer service. That may be a great policy but not one you can afford.

The policy must align not just with what the wholesale supplier’s return policy is, but also with your merchant services provider. You don’t want to be a retailer with a 60-day return policy when your merchant services provider only offers a penalty-free 30-day return policy.

Your return policy will also be determined by how long it takes for your customers to get their products. The longer it takes to get products delivered, the longer your return policy may need to extend from the point of sale.

When and How to Scale

You’ve got momentum and are generating sales with a good profit margin. The next stage is scaling up as a retailer. While this might seem natural and without problems for a dropshipping business there are things to keep in mind.

First, you can only scale as big as you can afford the time (or hiring) to service orders and fulfillment. You will need to still be on top of the supply chain and maintain a pro-active approach if you don’t want problems to creep into your business.

The second thing to consider when scaling up is whether or not your wholesale distributors can handle the demand. If you are scaling up by increasing marketing and advertising and generate 10 times the sales, will the distributor have the inventory?

If you are scaling with a new product, you’ll need to confirm that the products are in line with the quality and delivery guidelines you’ve already established with your core offers.

The third thing when scaling up is considering the amount per item you are spending with wholesale suppliers. Remember the question about price reductions for larger quantities? This is imperative in the scaling-up process.

Find wholesale distributors who will look at the aggregate number of items you sell and give you a discount based on inventory breakpoints. For example, you may get a breakpoint of $0.10 per item once you sell 500 and $0.12 per item at 1,000. Some distributors will give a limited retroactive breakpoint for all sales in the prior quarter.

Following up with quantity discounts is the easiest way to get more profit for the same amount of work and sales. Don’t let the wholesale distributors ignore your successful marketing and sales. They need you and should provide better pricing for better e-commerce stores.

The Bottom Line

Dropshipping is here to stay. It will evolve as new technology is developed and the marketplace gets even more competitive. Give yourself an edge with a good business strategy that includes branding, marketing, and service. Most of your competitors aren’t doing this and your customers will reward you with the sales because you do.

Moteefe – Let’s do business, together

The Importance of Color Theory in Branding

The Importance of Color Theory in Branding

The Importance of Color Theory in Branding

For a new e-commerce store, the importance of color in branding and advertising is extremely important yet often overlooked. Many business owners start with colors they personally like rather than colors that evoke a psychological response by the consumer to relate and buy from their brand. Corporate branding strategies understand color psychology and the use of color in advertising. Here is how you can keep your business on par with the big boys using the right colors.

Color Theory and The Brain 

Once upon a time, the idea of color symbolism psychology was nothing more than ideas based on anecdotal evidence. Companies tested marketing colors with different ads and monitored the results. Bottom line: colors and emotions are tied together and convey a mood for people.

More research has been dumped into understanding various color meanings within the brain. Colors lead to the release of neurotransmitters and blood flow paths. The conclusion is there are some predictable patters when looking at certain colors.

Color meanings such as red and orange are stimulating, energy arousing colors while blue and green are calming. Certain darker blues can even lead to passive emotions. Red, yellow, and blue are considered powerful colors to consider for generate very strong emotions.

It’s time to go from understanding color theory to using it to your advantage in advertising.

Importance of Color Associations in Advertising

The patterns of color meanings science has developed are really just the starting point. Color meanings and preferences are highly subjective. If someone associates negative feelings with blue because they had a traumatic experience while wearing blue shorts, they might not feel calm and stable with a blue product. Color associations are tied to memories and create correlations between new products based on the associated positive or negative emotions.

Building your brand on color is not the only component you need to consider but it isn’t an element you should ignore. If you know your audience and what your products do for them, color branding will subtly help you build trust and confidence with them. That leads to more sales. However, accomplishing the right emotions in advertising can be a bit tricky.

Color and Branding – What Do You Want People to Feel

Many new business owners want their buyers to be excited when they see their product and service. This is a natural way to think about how you want consumers to view you – with happiness and excitement. However, understanding why consumers love you may have more to do with the colors you choose than you imagine.

When Apple was developing the iPod mini, Steve Jobs is known to have adamantly stated that he wanted mature colors. His designer adamantly disagreed and said that vibrant, intense colors would attract the young target market. On the other hand, Whole Foods uses green and brown to depict an earth-friendly brand that helps its consumers be healthier while being good advocates for the planet. Of course, everything else you do as a brand must deliver – you can’t just choose a color and expect to have happy, loyal customers. Color is just an extension of your products, customer service, and everything your company stands for.

Target Audience and Color Meanings

Understanding your audience and demographics is very important when using color psychology. Something as simple as understanding that white often represents purity in western culture but represents mourning in some regions in Asia is important to evoke the right emotional state from your target audience.

When using color theory for your logo, website design, ads, and even product packaging you must consider what your product does and how it serves your target audience. Steve Jobs originally chose darker colors for the iPod and was smart to allow his designer to go with the brighter colors – their market was teens and young adults, not mature professionals nearing retirement.

Learn what your buyers like and love and you will have the right insights to the types of colors that will give them an immediate positive response to your website design, logo, and products. Marketing colors and advertising schemes reflect your target audience.

Colors Psychology – Universal Perceived Meaning

Color Color Meanings Types of Brands
Blue Positive emotions that generate feelings of trust and security Fiduciary brands where people must trust advice
Red Energetic and strong, red can be seen as aggressive and provocative Trendsetting brands looking to change existing models
Green Representing nature and good health with calming effects of lighter greens Organics and supplements or companies with a sustainable twist
Yellow A happy color representing optimism and vibrancy Solution-based services designed for convenience and ease
Purple Creativity, sophistication, royalty, and exclusivity Designer brands, entertainment companies
Pink Energetic or romantic depending on shade Relationship and lifestyle brands
Orange Cheerful and fun, whimsical Children’s brands
Brown Stability and simplicity Nature, outdoor, and organic lifestyle products
Black Elegant and classic Luxury products and exclusive solutions
White Clean, simple and sanitary Health, wellness, and hygiene solutions

Where to Use Color for Brand Identity

Color psychology sneaks into all aspects of your brand and e-commerce business. From the website design and logo all the way to product colors and Facebook ads, colors are everywhere. Without a cohesive color design, you can quickly find that colors don’t match, become overwhelming, and even generate negative emotions for the consumer.

Your color design should start with either the logo or the website template. Not everyone gets the logo designed before creating a website design and this is okay. Just make sure you are aware of what you want to accomplish with your logo – don’t just pick what is pleasing to you. From there, use color swatches to keep the same colors, hues, and tones throughout all designs.

Of course, you may not be able to choose the color of products, especially if you are using a print on demand or dropshipping platform. However, you can choose the colors of products to display that meet the overall color theme you create. For example, if you have children’s beachwear print on demand website with bright, happy colors such as yellow and orange, you could choose to compliment t-shirt colors for primary product images.

That doesn’t mean you should make everything on the page yellow and orange. Keep the t-shirts in bright tones but use complementary colors in advertising campaigns. Don’t jump from pastels to primary colors or other variations when you can avoid it. Overdoing color mixes will lead to a lack of emotions generated because the brain can’t pick up on any one color.

Too Much with Marketing Colors?

Don’t fall into the trap of using too many colors. Remember that you want your consumers to recognize your brand from the moment they see your ad or email. While certain color meanings like red and bright greens are great to grab attention for sales or promotions, the last thing you want is your e-commerce website brand looking like a wall of neon in a seedy part of town on a late Friday night.

Too much color will lead to confusion, countering the advertising objectives. If you aren’t sure how to compliment your main color choices, talk to a graphics designer. Great graphics designers can create a color palette for you to use in branding and advertising. This helps target main color selections with complementary colors to give viewers’ eyes a break and generate the desired emotions.

Final Thoughts: Color Meanings

Color and branding work together to help advertising campaigns and websites trigger emotions in consumers. The right emotions get people wanting to buy. Done properly, color meanings used in brand identity help create a company culture of good vibes consumers get just by looking at the logo or website.

Moteefe – Let’s do business, together

How to Optimize Your Online Store

How to Optimize Your Online Store

How to Optimize Your Online Store

Optimizing your online store requires a well-designed SEO strategy, consistent effort, and regular monitoring to make sure everything you are doing is working as planned. The internet is so vast that you can’t expect to open an e-commerce store and have it rise to the top of Google rankings with buyers immediately flocking to your website. Google has 200 (give or take) metrics that it uses in its algorithm to rank websites, but you don’t need to focus on every one to optimize your online store.

Follow these 9 strategies to optimize your online store for organic search success:

Keyword Optimization

Keywords are what your readers are putting into the Google search box. Every website needs to think about the best keywords that represent what consumers are looking for. For an e-commerce website, this is even more important because every product will need to have its own keyword research conducted to properly optimize the product page.

Keywords should be utilized in the product description, meta description, and tags for the product page. This provides the maximum SEO results for specific products that help the overall SEO optimization of your e-commerce store in 2019.

How to Find Keywords for Organic Traffic

Identifying keywords doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. There are a lot of free programs out there including Neil Patel’s Ubersuggest. When looking for keywords, think about what the customer will type into a search bar as they are shopping for a product. For example, if you are selling print on demand t-shirts, you’ll want to use a keyword that covers more than just t-shirts.

Describe the style or brand and something your buyer might be looking for such as men’s v-neck t-shirts. If you sell zombie themed, print on demand shirts, maybe include zombie as part of the keyword description.

When looking for keywords, you want there to be enough volume that suggests people are searching the term while also being less competitive with another store for search results. Keywords are usually more than one word and the best keywords for SEO are called long-tail keywords with three to five words in the phrase. These convert more often because they more clearly match what readers are searching for.

What a Meta Description Is

A meta description is a small snippet that describes a page’s content that is seen in organic search results under the page title. Try to limit these to 155 characters to ensure that Google picks up the entire snippet. Your SEO optimization greatly improves when you write clear meta descriptions that contain a keyword. The meta description is also called a meta tag.

What a Tag Is

A tag is a word or phrase that describes the website or webpage content. Essentially, tags are keywords you want to optimize for SEO organic search purposes. As described, the meta description (or meta tag) is the snippet that describes the page. You will also find alt-tag describes an image on your webpage, probably the product images.

As far as SEO optimization for your product or e-commerce store, alt tags can make a huge difference to improve your overall rank. Many people leave them blank even though this is part of web accessibility requirements. Describe the picture as accurately as possible in alt tags to get the most SEO optimization.

Other tags include basic page tags. Use more than one tag per image, page, product, or video to maximize your results. For example, if your product is a POD hoodie, you may want to include hoodies, men’s hoodies, women’s hoodies, children’s hoodies, lightweight hoodies, and so on as potential tags for the product.

Mobile Optimization

More and more consumers in 2019 are purchasing products from e-commerce stores and more of them are doing it via mobile phones or tablets. This means e-commerce stores, print on demand shops, and online businesses need to have a website that is optimized for mobile devices. Mobile optimization refers to how your website is seen on a mobile device.

With every second that passes, e-commerce stores lose customers who bounce from the site and go elsewhere at a rate of 20% per elapsed second. In fact, Search Engine Land reports that 95% of all paid search ad clicks come from mobile devices where consumers don’t want to spend extra time to scroll and search. Mobile optimization speeds up page loads and makes the user experience with your online business easy and better.

While most website templates in 2019 are designed for a good mobile experience, it is important that you spend the time to look at your website on your phone. In order to grow your store, you need to understand what your customers see online. Product descriptions and images should be easily read with clear font and crisp high-quality photos.

Product Descriptions and Images

Product descriptions and images are the best way to help you build an e-commerce brand and tell the story of your products in a way that relates to your buyers. If you are a dropshipping or print on demand (POD) e-commerce store, you want to get rid of the standard descriptions that come from the product wholesaler. Imagine the 50 other e-commerce stores using the same description to generate sales.

Setting yourself up as unique is the best way to grow your store and descriptions give you that opportunity. Have fun with product descriptions to show your online store’s personality and brand.

Proper HTML Site Map

To be properly optimized, your online store must have a site map that is indexed and crawled by the search engine spiders. This is the technical aspect of SEO that involves your site structure and architecture, not the content or keywords. If Google can’t see your pages or has trouble moving through the site map because it isn’t flat, meaning people can’t easily get from landing page to product and are redirected to multiple places, your site won’t rank very well.

Double check for HTML errors, images that are too large, and broken links. Fixing these issues helps improve page speed, the customer experience, and helps Google see what you are doing thus improving SEO. The spiders going through your pages is how Google reads those keywords you spent all that time to research and build. Help Google optimize your store for you with fixes to the HTML site map.

Internal and External Link Building

One of the key metrics that the Google algorithm looks at is your link building, both inbound and outbound links. There are a few ways to look at link building, some are easier but don’t provide the same SEO optimization for online stores as others.

Consider internal links where you link your own content on your website. This might be a link from a blog product review to the actual product and vice versa. This is easy and helps Google see how your website all fits together but gives the least amount of “link love” since it is only the webmaster controlling his own content.

Outbound links are places you send readers to get more information from other authoritative sources. The best links have a .gov or .edu extension but other site links are great if they are large authority sites with high Domain Authority (DA) ratings. This shows Google that you aren’t making things up and use high-quality resources to create content.

An outbound link that comes from another website to yours is called a backlink. Backlinks are the best type of links to help you optimize your website and get a higher Domain Authority (DA) for your online store. When other websites link to your content, they are giving you the social proof that Google wants to deem your articles and content as authoritative. While these give you the most value, they are the hardest to get.

These links take work but are worth it. Reach out to influencers to rate your products or pitch a guest post topic to a site your consumers go to.

Unique Meta Descriptions

You already know that meta descriptions are critical to help optimize your online store but how do you create meta descriptions that lead to clicks to your website? It’s challenging to meet the 155 character limit and be intriguing at the same time. You’ll need to include your keywords as well as qualifiers. A qualifier basically tells the Google reader something more specific about your product.

Qualifiers could be words like cheapest, top-rated, luxury, or unique. The meta description could also note a money back guarantee or free trial to entice those on the Google search page to click through to see what the offer is.

Essentially, the meta description should address two fundamental questions: what are you selling and why should the person reading the meta description buy from you. This is the commercial to keep your audience from changing the channel (going to another website) so choose words carefully. Some great meta descriptions actually have a call to action such as, “Get your free trial.”

Give the consumer a reason to you go your online store and not your competitors. When you achieve a great meta description, you will see more reach become clicks to your site. From there, the rest is up to you to deliver the best products found online.

Google Shopping

Open a Google merchant account to quickly get Google to recognize your online store. The Google Shopping search result is a bar at the top of any product search that lists various things for sale. If you type in trucker hats, you’ll see a carousel pop up at the top of the search results. Make sure you have high-quality images with great product descriptions utilizing the right keywords to get Google Shopping to help you get seen.

This is also helpful for local businesses with an online store presence. Google uses GPS to determine where buyers are and point them to the closest retailers. Ultimately Google Shopping as an SEO tool helps products rank faster and optimizes your store.

Build Blog Content

Blog content is a great way to optimize your online store with SEO keywords, relevant content, and link building for domain authority. Use blogs to create product reviews, how to guides, and offer insight to typical consumer issues or questions that help add value to your online store. New product reviews with user testimonials can grow your store.

Online stores with blog content generate 67% more leads and have 434% more indexed pages. It increases inbound link opportunities and sets your online store as a resource for information with products to purchase. Plus, you can share blogs across multiple social media channels such as Twitter and Instagram to help you optimize to the top spot on Google.

Set a content calendar with articles that revolve around the same keywords you researched for your tags and product descriptions. Blog topics should be focused on your niche and how what you sell makes life better for your customers. Articles and blog topics can be short posts but are better optimized when you have at least 1,500 words per post with three to four keywords highlighted within.

Social Media Integration

More research and data collection suggests that a strong social media presence for a website or e-commerce store increases the top search engine results (SEO) for an online store. In other words, the more followers, fans, and likes you have, the more likely you are to rank higher than your competition without that integration. As engagement grows, the Google algorithm connects the dots of relevance with potential readers.

Spend the time to share specials, promotions, testimonials, and blog content online to build a bigger following and better optimize your online store. Some social media channels hold more weight than others when it comes to ranking. Linkedin has the least linear relationship between rank and engagement while Facebook is the strongest. Pinterest is close to Facebook with Instagram and Twitter below.

Use social media to drive traffic to your site with enticing promotions, free offers, and great content. The more you can leverage your social media, the more likely you are to continue to build a stronger digital footprint.

Last Thoughts on Online Store SEO Optimization 

Improve your ranking and product sales by using proven SEO methods to integrate keywords based on what consumers want, build a website that is fast and pleasing to the eye, and look for ways to promote your content. Even a business owner on a bootstrapping budget can do all the tips outlined in this article.

Take the time to tackle each one and you’ll start to see your ranking build. If you aren’t selling with more traffic coming to the website, that means you have an issue with your pricing or your products. Monitor your progress and create a checklist to help you keep track of successes. Build on wins and adjust what isn’t working.

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