Search engine optimization (SEO) is the science behind organizing content in such a way that search engines like Google and Bing think it is important and rank web pages highly. The main challenge with SEO is that is constantly changing. Search engines change their algorithms routinely, and the guidance they issue explaining how to work with them isn’t enough to get optimal results. The vast majority of web users never make it to the second page of results, if you aren’t on page one, it’s almost like you don’t exist at all.
The Path to SEO Success
“I had been working on optimizing SEO on my own, but it’s a huge job and partnering with an expert was definitely going to be necessary to do it right,” said Stouffer. “There are plenty of companies out there that do this type of work, but you can spend a lot of money just getting them up to speed on your business model and systems. Since I was already using Command Retail for POS and E-Commerce, it was very easy for Celerant to see exactly what I was doing and they hit the ground running.”
This problem is compounded for retailers, who often manage thousands of unique pages for unique SKUs. Each one of them needs to be created with SEO in mind so they are able to rank highly in relevant search results.
Piragis took it’s entire catalog and enabled E-Commerce for each item. However, this online catalog largely mirrored the print edition, optimized for user experience and conversion. The leadership team quickly realized that it needed to make its E-Commerce presence as attractive to web crawlers and robots as it was to shoppers. When the team at Celerant launched SEO services, Piragis Marketing Director Tim Stouffer jumped at the opportunity.
SEO optimization began in earnest with a detailed audit of Boundarywaterscatalog.com lead by Celerant. Tracking analytics were turned on and studied, revealing that the website contained many duplicate entries and unnecessary data.
This series of duplications raised red flags with search engine algorithms and led them to rank the pages as having lower in importance. Celerant SEO and Marketing Technologist Emerson Scherer lead the effort to cleanup code on the back-end side of things while Stouffer optimized the front-end.
Much like testimonials validate products and claims in the minds of people, search engines assign higher rank to pages with reviews and volume matters. Celerant activated user reviews for product pages, and SKUs with customer feedback quickly saw lifts in their rankings on major search engines. The more reviews and ratings customers leave on product pages, the more authenticity and value search engines give them.