Connect with us

SEO

The Hidden Opportunity for Ecommerce Websites in Google Images

Published

on


Around three-quarters of U.S. internet users regularly or always search for visual content prior to making a purchase, according to eMarketer; only 3% never do.

When it comes to shopping online, product images create a positive experience for potential customers.

Many experts share that featuring multiple professional images for a product helps reduce customer uncertainty, resulting in improved conversion and lower return rates.

Google Images search share is approximately 26% of overall search, according to Jumpshot and Moz.

Optimized product images can drive new customer acquisition for ecommerce websites. Connecting discovery of up-to-date and accurate product information like images is key to completing a successful buyer experience on Google Images.

Here’s why Google Images offers a great opportunity to acquire new quality traffic.

Google Images: What Changed?

Google partnered with Getty Images to create a new search results experience for Google Images users.

As result of this partnership, Google announced two major changes to image search that change how Google displays indexed images and refers traffic to publishers.

Moving forward, Google is removing the option to “View Image” and replacing it with “Visit Site”, theoretically shifting traffic from Google Search to publisher sites, as evidenced by Google’s Danny Sullivan in the following tweet:

Ecommerce marketing professionals have a tremendous opportunity to create a new or improved channel for customer acquisition through Google Image Search.

Here are three ways to optimize your product images and get them indexed in Google search for high-quality traffic with purchase intent.

1. Nail the Basics of Image Optimization

Descriptive file names are key to getting your product images found.

Also, you’ll want to add optimized alternate text. Image alt attributes are a must for ecommerce websites in case an image doesn’t load.

Google also uses the alt text to understand image context which has been confirmed by the Google webmaster team.

A great example is how MVMT Watches names their product images.

As shown in the below example of MVMT watches, if someone searches for “gunmetal watch”, MVMT owns the first organic result in Google Images search, largely due to proper use of naming and image alt text.

MVMT Gunmetal Watch

For more help with the basics of image optimization, see 14 Important Image SEO Tips You Need to Know.

2. Markup Your Images with Schema

Using structured markup to enable rich product images and product attributes lets brands attract potential searchers while they are searching for items to buy on Google or images that include products you sell.

Maintain the accuracy and freshness of your product information, so your customers find the relevant, current items they’re looking for.

Make Google Images your storefront window with structured markup. A must for any ecommerce brand or retailer is adding structured data markup to websites and ensure Google understands the product images and related attributes.

Google suggests adding markup to your product pages so they can provide detailed product information in rich search results, including Google Images. High intent searchers can see product price, availability, and review ratings displayed on search results.

Google has enabled a new report for ‘Products’ in Search Console for ecommerce sites that use structured markup to annotate their product information.

This new report allows a brand or search marketer to see any pending issues for markup on your site. Once an issue is fixed, the report can be used to validate the resolution of your issues by recrawling your affected pages. Learn more about the rich result status reports.

3. Show Your Product Information in Google Search & Google Images

Another must for any marketing professional working with a retailer or ecommerce website is having accurate information about your products show up in Google Search and Google Images.

With the recent changes to Google product feeds, you can now update your product information in real-time to match related queries from high intent searches or buyers.

The new expansion of the Google product feed is boon for retail brands and marketers looking to properly display their product information (like images) in real-time.

Imagine a fast fashion brand that changes its product inventory quarterly or brands offering exclusive or limited edition products that they launch and sunset on Google Search and Images.

Marketers can now easily upload their product feed and images to Google’s Merchant Center making them eligible for immediate display in search results for web and images search.

The product information (like images) is ranked based on the relevance to search queries from the user, and best of all, it’s free to use. This functionality is now available to brands in the US with additional countries rolling out soon.

Product information in Google Search

4. Show Your Product Images in Google Knowledge Cards

New for 2019 is Google giving manufacturers more control over their brand and product information.

Brands that manufacture their own products, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and/or B2B companies will attest that getting their product images to show accurately in Google is imperative for discovery in their category and overall brand awareness.

Another recent announcement from Google is the ability to update your product information (like Images) through their Google Manufacturer Center.

You can now update your product description, variants, and rich content like images and videos that can show on the product’s knowledge panel.

Product Information in Product Knowledge Panels

5. Leverage Your Customers for Authentic Images

Harness the power of user-generated content to increase trust and conversions. Add customer images throughout your ecommerce website.

Encourage your customers to post their images (with your products) to platforms like Facebook and Instagram, then repurpose that content on your product and checkout pages.

Follow brand leaders like Vanity Planet, which encourages customer engagement and shares their UGC throughout the shopper journey:

Vanity-Planet-UGC

6. Compress Your Images

Last but not least, ensure that your images load fast and are optimized for speed.

There are many tools, such as TinyPNG, that help you compress your website images.

Also, most hosting platforms offer CDN services for fast delivery. An optimized file size improves your odds for indexing in Google Images.

Properly followed and executed, these six image search tactics can give your ecommerce website a boost in traffic and sales.


Image Credits

Featured Image: Paulo Bobita
All screenshots taken by author



Continue Reading
Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

SEO

Rand Fishkin on optimizing for and against Google

Published

on


NEW YORK – Google’s relationship with brands has shifted from referrer to competitor, SparkToro CEO and co-founder Rand Fishkin said at SMX East on Wednesday during his keynote about how the search engine’s business model has been evolving.

Now that the majority of Google searches are no-click, companies will have to find on-SERP opportunities to reach their audiences and strengthen their branding so that users will actively seek them out, said Fishkin.

The zero-click search trend

More than half (56.1%) of Google searches conducted from a mobile browser and 34.9% of Google desktop searches ended without a click to other content, according to Jumpshot data. “However, the trend is the same: organic, going down; while paid and zero-click searches are on the rise,” said Fishkin.

Source: SparkToro.

“In September, 7.5% of all searches resulted in a click to an Alphabet property,” said Fishkin. “Google is the biggest beneficiary of Google Search today. Nobody else comes close to that 7.5% number.”

From middleman to “competitor”

In addition to organic click volume eroding, Google’s direct answers and its foray into verticals resolves searches in numerous industries, such as weather, travel, local, and reviews, without the user ever having to click through to the sites that originally published that information.

“This is widespread, friends,” said Fishkin, citing results from Google Hotels, Flights, Jobs, the local pack and other types of rich results surfacing on the main results page. “We are talking about results that are taking business away from Skyscanner and Kayak in travel, from Eater and Yelp in local results, from U.S. News and FiveThirtyEight in the college rankings, from Wunderground and Weather.com, from MetaCritic and PC Gamer, and basically everybody but Alphabet when it comes to a lot of popular culture and media stuff.”

What brands can do about it

“We have to find ways to make our brand what searchers seek out,” said Fishkin. “I don’t want searches for ‘weather’; I want searches for my brand: I want searches for ‘Weather Underground’ and ‘Weather.com’ and ‘Weather Channel.’ I want to find ways to benefit from zero-click searches.”

Despite the bleak outlook for organic traffic in certain industries, there are still a number of ways that brands can influence what Fishkin refers to as “post-search behavior.”

Source: SparkToro.

Designing content with rich results in mind is one way companies can increase their visibility on the search results page — what Fishkin refers to as and “on-SERP SEO” — and the attribution from those results may help familiarize users with your brand. Buying ads will also help you do this, Fishkin said.

Offline brand campaigns, such as billboards, radio and TV ads can also influence search behavior. If users are actively seeking out your brand, claiming or suggesting changes to your knowledge panel can help you positively influence brand perception. To bolster your brand even further, Fishkin recommended reputation management SEO to help control branded search results.

The prisoner’s dilemma for brands

“The prisoner’s dilemma is ‘Do I optimize for zero-click searches, for providing these answers, for marking my results the way Google wants them — and potentially losing traffic as a result?’” said Fishkin, highlighting the predicament that many brands are now finding themselves in.

If your brand doesn’t benefit from ranking for a given query without traffic or doesn’t receive credit for it, you should instead optimize for keywords that do send traffic, Fishkin said. Source: SparkToro.

Fishkin’s mechanism for navigating this dilemma divides the issue into two categories: one for all types of content that can surface as a rich result (above), and another specifically for search results derived from structured data (below).

Brands should consider whether they will gain or lose value from adding structured data, and whether it’s more practical to cede the answer box to a competitor and pursue other keyword opportunities. Source: SparkToro.

“All of us have to try and build walls to protect against the competition that will absolutely come to sector after sector from Google as they search for growth … that is just the reality,” said Fishkin. “But, I think we have an opportunity to build our own brands and still succeed.”

Relying on search engines to reach your customers inherently makes brands susceptible to the way those search engines deliver results. However, by complementing your SEO efforts with a strategy that creates demand for your brand, you may be able to insulate yourself and stay ahead of the competition.


About The Author

George Nguyen is an Associate Editor at Third Door Media. His background is in content marketing, journalism, and storytelling.



Continue Reading

SEO

Understanding referrer clicks and how they can skew search engine market share

Published

on


As every search marketer knows, clicks are a key metric in measuring search traffic, yet counting clicks can be a complicated thing. All clicks are not the same. There are paid clicks. There are organic clicks. There are mobile clicks. And many times there are clicks that get quickly redirected in the blink of an eye without a user even realizing it. These redirected clicks can cause discrepancies and confusion in click reports.

Consider this: a recent post from StatCounter shows a search engine market share of Google 88.37% and Bing 6.07%. At the same time, other sites such as Statista, show Google at 62.5% with Microsoft sites (Bing) at 25%. And even another site, comScore, places U.S. Bing share at 36% on PC and 20% across all devices. Why such large discrepancies? What is driving the confusion? The answer requires an understanding of the mechanics of ad serving and web referrals.

Referrers are links that drive traffic to other websites, moving people around the internet. A referrer site is simply the site that a person was on right before they came to your page. But sometimes referrer sites get misrepresented. A click can get diverted to an ad server, then quickly redirected to your page. Take for example the retailer, Kohls. A person is surfing the Kohls website and clicks on a picture of a TAG Heuer watch:

From a user experience, this shopper goes directly from the Kohls website to TAG’s website. And yet on paper, the referrer click gets credited to Google. Why is this? Through Google’s AdSense program, the click from Kohl’s gets quickly redirected to Google’s ad server before going to tagheuer.com. The click referral is attributed to Google not Kohl’s. The clicks from ad servers can add up and skew market share, even though these are not direct search queries from a search engine.

It’s good to understand how sites such as StatCounter or JumpShot calculate their data by combining search engine referrals with ads from syndicated websites in their referrer metrics. Referrer can be rich with insightful information, but should be carefully analyzed and understood before making any optimization or business decisions. Search marketers should also stay vigilant for redirects on referrer click reports as often times there is more to a click than meets the eye.


Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.


About The Author

​Christi Olson is a Search Evangelist at Microsoft in Seattle, Washington. For over a decade Christi has been a student and practitioner of SEM. Prior to joining the Bing Ads team within Microsoft, Christi worked in marketing both in-house and at agencies at Point It, Expedia, Harry & David, and Microsoft (MSN, Bing, Windows). When she’s not geeking out about search and digital marketing she can be found with her husband at ACUO crossfit and running races across the PacificNW, brewing and trying to find the perfect beer, and going for lots of walks with their two schnauzers and pug.



Continue Reading

SEO

Want to speak at SMX West? Here’s how

Published

on


Want to showcase your knowledge of search marketing to our SMX West attendees? We’d love to hear from you, and if you wow us with your proposal we’ll invite you to speak at the conference. To increase the odds of being selected, be sure to read the agenda. Understand what the sessions are about. Ensure that your pitch is on target to the show’s audience and the session. Please also be very specific about what you intend to cover. Also, if you do not see a particular session listed, this is because there are no openings for that session. Use this form to submit your request.

PLEASE NOTE: We have changed the pitch process. We’ve put together session titles that we plan to run at the show, and we’re looking for you to tell us what key learning objectives and takeaways you’ll offer to attendees. Detailed instructions are on the pitch form.

As you might guess, interest is high in speaking at SMX conferences. We literally sift through hundreds of submissions to select speakers for the show. Here are some tips that will increase your chances of being selected.

Pitch early: Submitting your pitch early gives you a better chance of being selected. Coordinators accept speakers as soon as they identify a pitch that they think best fits the session, just like colleges that use a rolling admissions policy. So pitching early increases the likelihood you’ll be chosen.

Use the form: The speaker pitch form (http://marketinglandevents.com/speaker-form/) is the way to ask to speak. There’s helpful information there about how your pitch should be written and what it should contain.

Write it yourself and be specific: Lots of pitches come in that are not specific to the session. This is the most effective ways to ensure that your pitch is ignored. And this year, we’re no longer accepting pitches written by anyone other than a proposed speaker. If you’re a thought leader, write the pitch yourself… and make certain that it is 100% focused on the session topic.

“Throw your best pitch:” We’re limiting the number of pitches to three per person, so please pitch for the session(s) where you really feel you’ll offer SMX attendees your best.

NEW: SMX Insights Sessions. What are they? 8-10 minute solo sessions that pack a punch and wow attendees with content they can’t and won’t see anywhere else. Tactical. Specific. Actionable. Speakers are challenged to deliver the goods in a limited amount of time: one must-try tactic, one nugget of sage advice, or one takeaway that makes you more productive. Have a gem to share with your colleagues? Pitch your idea and you may make it to the SMX stage!

You’ll be notified: Everyone who pitches to speak will be notified by email whether you are accepted or not.

And don’t delay—the pitch forms for each session will close as sessions are filled, with everything closing Friday, November 29.


About The Author



Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2019 Plolu.