Search Engine Optimization (SEO) FAQs

Contents

What is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a collection of techniques and best practices aimed at improving a site's visibility in the organic search results in order to attract qualified traffic. For an ecommerce website, the prospect of being found through organic search is attractive due to the potential for targeted traffic and sales that can result.

What is organic traffic?

Organic (natural) search traffic refers to the unpaid traffic that naturally finds its way to a site through search engines. Most organic traffic originates from a search entered into a major search engine such as Google, Bing, Yahoo or even YouTube or Google image search.

What is the difference between on-page & off-page SEO?

SEO can be generally categorized into two components, on-page and off-page optimization, each of which is critical to search engine success. On-page optimization involves developing your site's content for relevance to popular keywords, and ensuring that its code and content are correctly structured such that search engine spiders can index them.

Off-page optimization refers to the quality and quantity of links pointing to a page, which are used by search engines to help determine authority and relevance. Many aspects of off-page optimization are not directly controlled by the site owner, but building quality content that is valuable to users can help make a site more “link-worthy” and contribute to its off-page optimization.

Both on and off page optimization are necessary to achieve effective, long-term SEO success in most industries.

What is the difference between SEO and PPC?

SEO involves building the content of a site for optimal search engine visibility to users entering relevant queries. SEO is a long term marketing activity and results take both expertise and time to achieve.

Pay-per-click (PPC) marketing utilizes paid advertisements on search engines and sites to attract qualified clicks to a website. Advertisers pay for each click generated through PPC campaigns, with the cost per click determined by a competitive bidding system.  PPC allows you to target specific keywords and have your advertisement appear when those keywords are entered by users.

How long does it take to achieve results from search engine optimization?

The time it takes to reach your SEO goals will depend on many external factors including the techniques used, keyword competitiveness, industry conditions and even the age of the site.

With proper on-page optimization, a noticeable increase in visibility for the target keywords often takes place fairly quickly, but the increase from page optimization alone is not enough to realize an increase in traffic in most industries. For instance, when a page appearing on the 10th page of the search results is optimized correctly for its target keywords, it may move up to the 3rd page of the results in searches for those keywords. While a significant improvement has taken place, most users are not going to click through to the 3rd page of results, so traffic will not likely improve without further work such as link building over a period of months.

What can I expect from Volusion's Starter SEO packages?

Volusion's Starter SEO Packages includes on-page optimization for 5 pages each month. Optimizing pages of your site for popular keywords increases the chance that users will find those pages in related searches.

An SEO Starter Package is a great option for businesses looking for a quality on-page SEO solution at a low monthly cost. It is also a cost efficient way to optimize a large quantity of pages over time when optimizing all pages at once is not economically feasible.

Quality on-page optimization establishes a critical foundation for SEO success and is an essential online marketing activity for any ecommerce business. The SEO Starter package does not include off-page optimization, another important component of search engine optimization.

What can I expect from Volusion's Advanced SEO packages?

Volusion's Advanced SEO Packages is a flexible, smaller scale alternative to Custom SEO. It begins with technical optimization, a full website audit, 5 pages of on-page optimization and a formal strategy document. After the first month, the campaign shifts to a customized strategy that can include on-page and/or off-page SEO tactics. The Advanced SEO package does not include social media marketing. 

What are the advantages of using a Custom SEO strategy?

Volusion’s Custom SEO Package includes the development and implementation of a wholly customized SEO strategy for your company's goals. Our SEO experts will ensure that the code and content of your top pages are optimized for the right keywords and perform link and content building throughout the engagement.

In addition to thorough SEO work, the Custom SEO Package can include complementary social media marketing and conversion optimization strategies. All Custom accounts receive a dedicated Marketing Consultant in addition to the SEO Specialist and a Social Media Manager if applicable.

Can't we do SEO ourselves?

Yes, with lots of time, expertise and patience. Learning the ins and outs of SEO, developing a strategy, and implementing/monitoring progress is a time consuming feat that many business owners aren't interested in tackling. Our SEO services are offered for clients who want to spend time on other aspects of their businesses while letting experts handle their SEO campaigns.

Can you guarantee me anything?

It would be unethical for any SEO service provider to guarantee specific search engine results due to the uncontrollable variables that influence them. Any company that makes such a promise demonstrates a fundamental lack of understanding of SEO. The methods and practices we employ are both ethical and have a strong history of success.

How can I determine if my website is optimized for search engines?

One of the best ways to gauge your current SEO standing is to have an SEO audit completed for the site. We offer a comprehensive and affordable audit that contains both SEO analyses and specific recommendations designed to help you take the next step - whether it be performing SEO yourself or enlisting our SEO services. Learn more about the SEO Audit.

How many keywords do you implement? 

A general rule for SEO is to optimize each page for about 3-5 primary keyword phrases. While there's no concrete rule, our team follows this general guideline in performing keyword research for each page. The total number of keywords depends on the number of pages being optimized.

How much involvement is needed from me?

Aside from a few items that require client approval, you can be as involved or hands-off as you would like. Some of our clients choose to be highly involved and enjoy providing content ideas and suggestions. Others prefer to concentrate on their day-to-day business and leave all SEO efforts to our team. We respect each store owner's personal time commitments. Regardless of your involvement level, our SEO team will always provide consistent reporting to ensure that you're informed on current developments.

What else would you suggest I do to increase sales and traffic to my site?

An effective SEO campaign can significantly increase organic traffic to your site, but it doesn't guarantee sales conversions. There are many external variables affecting conversions that are simply outside the control of your SEO expert, including demand, pricing and other market forces. That said, there are a few complementary practices that the SEO team recommends to all ecommerce clients: design and marketing.

All the SEO in the world cannot improve a shopper's reaction to a poorly designed website. The shopper should immediately "feel" your online store is legitimate and trustworthy. If they don't trust your site, they won't purchase a product nor will they come back to the store to browse in the future.

Likewise, SEO on its own does not make up a complete marketing strategy. Your online marketing strategy should also include complementary elements such as social media, PPC (pay per click) advertising, and shopping feeds. There's no exact recipe for success, but it's rare to find a successful company that doesn't actively market itself through multiple online channels.

Why do you only optimize a few pages when my site has hundreds of other pages?

Because web pages are ranked individually, having each page optimized for keywords relevant to its content would be ideal. We focus on the most important landing pages because achieving SEO results for even a single page requires a lot of time and effort. Thus, optimizing an unlimited number of pages for a flat rate would be unfeasible.

Our Starter SEO Packages, which include on-page optimization of a set number of pages each month, allow you to continuously build optimized pages for a low monthly fee.