It’s hard to believe the first quarter has come and gone. For many eCommerce store owners, the momentum of holiday shopping continues into the first few weeks of the new year as gift cards are redeemed, exchanges are made, and accessories bought for all the presents received.
The first quarter also is a time for merchants to evaluate what they did right and what they did wrong during the holiday season and make adjustments to ensure that the new year is one full of success.
Whether it be finally pulling the trigger on a responsive redesign, implementing a better search application, optimizing item pages, or streamlining the checkout process, we’re here to help you make 2019 the best year in your company’s history.
Here at Your Store Wizards, we’ve been hard at work as well! Our team has accomplished many of the goals we set out to complete in Q1. Many of which lay the framework for some very exciting products and features that will be released over the next several weeks and months.
On to the first quarter highlight reel!
Refined our Yahoo! Store Responsive Store Product: Believe it or not, there are still plenty of Yahoo! Store owners who have not made the move to a responsive website yet. For years, it’s been standard that websites are built in this fashion to ensure they display properly across all devices – from desktops down to the smallest of smartphone screens.
With more and more shoppers making purchases from the palm of their hands, it’s never been more important to invest in a responsive redesign. All you need to do to see just how many people are visiting your site from a mobile device is to have a look at your Google Analytics account.
Go ahead, you may be in for a surprise!
I know that all merchants have limited budgets when it comes to redesigns and we’re sensitive to that. However, you don’t need to break the bank when going responsive. If you’re a Yahoo! Store merchant, we are able to make your store responsive quickly and affordably using the Yahoo! responsive templates and carrying over many of the custom features that already exist on your site.
There is no better time than right now to get started on a redesign so you’re ready to face the 2019 holiday season head-on. Let’s begin the conversation today, going responsive is less expensive than you may think!
Introducing AMP Wizard! In just a few days, I’ll be sharing details on a new product being offered to improve mobile visibility and speed for Yahoo! Stores. Last year, Google released what has been called the “speed update” which included an update to its mobile algorithm.
Before this update, Google took site speed into consideration when displaying organic search results – but only for desktop searches. With the “speed update,” Google now takes site speed into consideration for both desktop AND mobile searches. So slower loading sites will be less inclined to get good placement in the organic results.
When the update rolled out, Google’s recommendation to site owners and developers was to serve up AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) versions of pages to mobile search users. However, this was not a feature available to Yahoo! Store owners… until now.
“The Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) project is built on top of existing web technologies to enable blazing-fast page rendering and content delivery.”
Our team is putting the final touches on our AMP Wizard and we’ll be officially rolling it out in just a few days. Full details on the product will be provided at that point, but in general, AMP Wizard is designed to solve two problems:
- Provides a lightning-fast version of your website to mobile search users that maintains full functionality of your store without any intervention from you and no second store/site/platform to maintain.
- Helps to improve your mobile search engine optimization efforts by conforming with Google’s AMP recommendations post-”speed update.”
Stay tuned for more on AMP Wizard coming soon!
Update to Search Magic Analytics – Search Magic users will be happy to see the return of the analytics widget on their dashboard following our latest update. The widget returns after a small number of users reported erroneous data being displayed. After identifying the root cause and rolling out an update to all users, the analytics widget is back and functioning as originally intended.
But we’re not done yet!
Soon Search Magic will be fully integrated with Google Analytics giving store owners a more detailed look at how shoppers use the site search. This is just another way we’re continually working to make Search Magic the most robust and affordable 3rd-party search application available.
Considering Switching Platforms? It may not be as easy as you think! If you’ve been considering moving your eCommerce store to a new platform, there are many important considerations to take into account.
- Can I easily export my products and import them?
- Can I keep order and customer history?
- Will my SEO take a hit?
…and the list goes on! And let’s not forget the cost of the migration itself and the time and effort involved from both the store owner and the developer(s).
Changing platforms is something that should be carefully considered and all options weighed – including staying put.
But if you’ve done the research, weighed the pros and cons, and are 100% sure that changing platforms is something you have to do, we’re here to help. We’ve put together a comprehensive “plan of attack” for those store owners who wish to migrate to and from Yahoo! Store, Big Commerce, Shopify, and Magento.
We will walk you through the initial planning to make sure all your ducks are in a row and work with you every step of the way to make sure the migration goes as smooth as possible.
Even if a switch is something you’ve only considered in passing, it’s good to speak with us to discuss why you’re considering a move, have us take a look at your store to see what will carry over and what won’t and give you an honest recommendation.
First, some background on California’s Proposition 65. The proposition requires that the state maintain a list of chemicals that are known to cause health issues and is updated at least once a year. Currently, there are more than 900 chemicals on the list that range from ingredients in common household cleaners to food and drugs as well as chemicals used for manufacturing or construction.
Store owners selling items which contain a chemical that is part of the Prop 65 list are required to provide a notice alerting customers of the chemical’s presence. This is required for both bricks-and-mortar and online retailers.
Our Prop 65 Wizards makes merchants compliant by providing the appropriate notice on the item once a shopper adds it to their cart. Using geolocation technology, we are able to only display the notice to users within the state of California.
Prop 65 Wizard is available for Yahoo! Store and Big Commerce* and is a monthly subscription service. (*A setup fee applies for Big Commerce installs.)
Things You May Not Have Noticed – Over the past few months we’ve also made some changes internally which are designed to better support our clients and allow us to continually work on improving existing products and develop new ones.
- We’ve created an App Development Team whose sole responsibility is to research and develop new products and features for Yahoo! Store, Big Commerce and Shopify. This team is also responsible for enhancing our SaaS products including Search Magic, Feed Wizard and more.
- Our Support Wizards have been empowered to “do what it takes” to solve your problem quickly and efficiently with a goal of making that Wizard be the one person who you deal with from initial inquiry to problem solved.
- Finished our conversion to a new billing system which includes a new feature that will alert you via a phone call when a credit card has expired or a payment failed to allow you to quickly update your information with us to avoid any interruption in service.
With AMP Wizard just around the corner, the groundwork has been laid for additional services which will be built off that product’s backend which I think many merchants will be excited about – including one that… well, I can’t spill the beans just yet!
Maybe in my May update, I can share a little more!
In the meantime, be sure to subscribe to our blog (enter your email address in the top right of the page) and follow us on Facebook. These two channels are where you will be among the first to learn about new products and features.
As always, if I or any member of our team can be of service, feel free to contact us.
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 email@example.com.