With the start of September, store owners really only have 60 days to make sure their site is ready for the holiday shopping season. Over the past few years, we’ve seen shoppers take to shopping earlier and earlier thanks to stores pushing out sales and promotions before the traditional start of the season – Black Friday.
While most store owners aren’t going to make major changes to their store this time of year, such as a redesign, there are some things worth implementing ahead of the holiday rush that can have an impact on sales.
Recommendation 1: A Robust Advanced Search
First and foremost is your store’s search. Let’s face it, the standard out-of-the-box search included with your store just doesn’t cut it. It’s fine if you have a small selection of products, but for larger merchants, a more robust site search is needed.
Advanced search products offer far more features than the standard search such as filtering and sorting of results, auto-correcting for spelling errors in the query, using synonyms for more useful results, and more.
Of course, the benefit of your store’s built-in search is the price – it’s free. But at the end of the day, you’re probably losing more money than you’re saving by not providing shoppers with relevant results that result in sales.
Third-party advanced search products vary widely in cost as well as features. But a robust advanced search solution doesn’t have to cost thousands of dollars a year as some do.
At Your Store Wizards, we have one of the most feature-packed, robust, and affordable advanced search products available. It’s called Search Magic and it’s powering searches on some of the largest Yahoo! Stores.
Search Magic provides store owners with a powerful search engine backed by unparalleled technical support and ongoing product updates. Plus, it’s a fraction of the cost of other popular search products.
If your store is still running the standard search, or you’re if you’re looking to save money on your current advanced search product, it’s time to take a look at Search Magic.
The product is built by us, maintained by us, and supported by us! Best of all, there are no contracts to sign and no lengthy commitments to make. Our support team can have Search Magic installed on your Yahoo! Store in time for the holiday season. Plus, with built-in Google Analytics, you can actually see how much money Search Magic is generating for you.
Check out the feature comparison chart below, then visit the Search Magic website to learn more and to request a demo.
Search Magic Availability: Currently available for Yahoo! Store. Support for BigCommerce and Shopify coming soon.
Recommendation 2: Implement Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)
The second recommendation I have is to implement an AMP version of your store. What is AMP? Simply put, AMP stands for Accelerated Mobile Pages – a lightweight, lightning-fast version of your website that’s served up in the mobile search results instead of your regular website.
We all know that Google uses speed as a ranking factor, so having a blazing fast site for your mobile visitors is paramount. This holiday we are expected to see a record number of eCommerce transactions take place on mobile devices. Providing your visitors with an optimized, fast experience is more important than ever.
AMP Wizard from Your Store Wizards launched earlier this year and was featured during IRCE2019. The way it works is simple! Once AMP Wizard is installed, your AMP powered store resides on it’s own subdomain, such as https://amp.blaircandy.com (an actual AMP Wizard store, by the way).
We “push” the AMP version to Google where it’s stored in their cache and served up to mobile searchers. Each time you publish your store, the changes you made are automatically made to the AMP version and “pushed” once again.
There’s no need to update a separate version of your store or update an app. It’s all done automatically, making AMP Wizard hands-off for the store owner.
Like Search Magic, AMP Wizard is built by us, maintained by us, and supported by us. It’s also contract-free making it another no-risk product.
Since its release, we’ve continually rolled out updates to AMP Wizard that have improved speed (which is very important), added additional features such as embedded YouTube videos, and are preparing to launch the product on additional platforms later this year.
You may be saying, “but my website is responsive, why would I need AMP?” Once again, it’s Google’s recommendation that site owners provide them with an AMP version of their website.
AMP sites, due to their speed, get served to searchers before a non-AMP version. So from an SEO standpoint, your AMP store is more likely to appear to mobile searchers than a non-AMP store (responsive or not).
To learn more about AMP Wizard, check out this blog post as well as our list of frequently asked questions. Then, contact us right away to have AMP Wizard implemented on your store in time for the holiday.
AMP Wizard Availability: Currently available for Yahoo! Store. Support for BigCommerce and Shopify coming soon.
These two recommendations for site improvements can go a long way in capturing additional sales this holiday season and should be on every store owner’s to-do list.
As always, we’re here to answer any questions on Search Magic, AMP Wizard or any other eCommerce related issue. Feel free to reach out to our support team at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact me directly at email@example.com.
General Manager, YSW
Scott Sanfilippo began his eCommerce journey in 1994 by co-founding one of the Internet’s first online retailers, TheFerretStore.com, which was acquired by PetCo in 2006. In 2001, he co-founded the eCommerce design and marketing firm Solid Cactus, which was acquired by web.com in 2009. Today, Scott is the General Manager of Your Store Wizards and lives in Delray Beach, FL. Scott can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.