On your marks, get set… “Merchants have less than a 30 day window from now, until roughly the end of November, to get some of those last-minute structural changes in place,” said Brian Klais, VP of search at Madison, Netconcepts, a Madison, WI-based search engine marketing firm. He’s referring to search engine optimization, and getting Web sites running smoothly and cataloged by the search engines. At the top of the list are cleaning up structural changes in URLs, fixing any 301 redirect issues, and reviewing on-page content.
“What retailers can do now with very little spare time is to think about merchandising strategies. If free shipping is featured in the merchandising mix, then retailers can maximize the offer by keeping an eye on those dates for searchers,” Klais advised. He went on with a few tips: Make sure the title tags and the content on the pages have an offer within. Include the words free shipping in the title tag. “It might be enough to convert searcher activity into a click and then into a sale,” he said.
Ideally, SEO will be in place by mid-November for most retailers, if it’s not already done, in order to allow for indexing by the search engines. That requires about a two-week buffer to obtain proper indexing and link juice, according to Klais.