Thursday, August 12, 2010

Advanced Ebay Promotion Using Squidoo

A couple of weeks ago, I posted about using Squidoo to increase Ebay store sales on Professional Squids. This post went into detail about the benefits of creating a lens for your store, and how you can make the best use of them to drive traffic and sales. In addition, there's the part one of this post on promoting your Ebay store with Squidoo, which you should read first. Now that we've covered some of the basics, let get into some more advanced strategies for using Squidoo and Ebay together.

When you organize your Ebay store, you're going to want to make it as easy for buyers as possible. That means you'll want to separate all of your items by brand and type of item. If you don't have enough items to do this, then use a more general term to separate your items. The more items you have, the more specific you can get with your categories. This can also help with search engine optimization, since your store will have a link with anchor link text to that category page. For example, if you have a section called "collectible coke bottles," then you'll have a link headed into that category for that term. You may even want to expand upon that by using the custom pages on your store.

When you create custom pages, think of them as landing pages. Your home page is your main page, but each custom page could be focused on a different aspect of your business. If you sell types of computers, you could separate them by brand or type, and dedicate an informational page, also showcasing your items, on that page. Ebay allows you to use HTML on these extra pages, so spice it up by adding photos, simple graphics, header tags, bold tags, italicize, underlining, and as much content as you can fit in. One thing you won't want to do is link outside of your store from this area. Keep buyers in, not headed out, unless it's to harvest email newsletter subscriptions or to have them follow you on Facebook or Twitter.

Once you've created your masterpiece custom page, then it's time to promote your page using Squidoo. When you create your lenses, you'll want to work around the custom page and your store categories. You can try making one lens for every category, or a couple of lenses (or more) for every custom page. Creating related content is going to work best. To cite the previous example, let's stick with computers as a theme. If you created a custom page about Dell computers, then creating Squidoo lenses about "saving money on Dell computers," "how to add memory to your Dell computer" and "The Best Dell Laptop Computers for Travel" might be good topics for your niche. On these lenses, you'll want to work the title of the custom Ebay store page into the text of the lens somewhere, and also hyperlink that keyword term to the page. Using bold might be appropriate as well. For best search engine results, you may want to include this link somewhere in a paragraph instead of pasting it at the bottom of the page.
  • Note only one link to a specific page will be counted by search engines.
  • Link to your other custom pages and store categories when appropriate.
  • Link to your other Ebay lenses using the featured lens module, or by using keyword anchor text.

In the weeks and months to come, you should start to see your individual custom pages start to pick up in traffic. If you have traffic stats enabled, try seeing what search terms people are using to get to your page and tweak the page as necessary to include more information and keywords. Most SEO analysts say the sweet spot for keyword density for any given term is about 2-2.2%.

If you're not seeing an increase in traffic, then it could be:
  • There are too many keywords and it's stuffed.
  • There aren't enough links yet, so Google hasn't found the page.
  • There isn't enough content on the page for search engines to index it. Try adding more content. 1500 words is a good start.
  • The topic of the page is confusing. Try simplifying it to something people are searching for.
As traffic starts to pick up to these pages, you're going to want to capitalize on that by adding new items, creating new lenses, and finding new avenues to promote all of your pages. Blogging and article writing are the next step in this process, as well as Twitter and Facebook.

This same strategy can be used not only for Ebay, but for Amazon items, CafePress items, and Etsy items.