SEO for Yola websites - A quick "How To" guide.

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So, you're concerned because your Yola website doesn't feature as prominently in the search engines as you'd wish. Let's see if we can change that!

As a community support specialist for Yola, I regularly see requests from users who ask about SEO and how to get their sites to rank and perform better in search engines. The bottom line, is that it takes time and effort to achieve a decent page rank. There is, unfortunately, no hard and fast way to get your site on the first page for a specific set of keywords.

As a hobby, my partner and I breed ball pythons. This is a very competitive field and having a website, where you can showcase your collection, is a huge advantage. Luckily I work for Yola, so I started creating the website for A & M Ball Pythons, but that wasn't enough. It is pointless having a visually attractive website, if nobody can find it.

SEO, admittedly, has a bit of a learning curve, but with the right information it becomes a simple and relatively painless task. As long as you're willing to put in the time it takes and you understand that IT WILL NOT HAPPEN OVERNIGHT.

Yola has a collection of SEO tutorials (Promotion, SEO, Traffic and Advertising) and these would be a good place to start.

With the A & M Ball Pythons website, I chose to optimise the keywords for local users. I wanted my website to feature heavily when potential clients searched for "ball pythons cape town". If you click on the search phrase, you can confirm our ranking on Google. Not only do we regularly display as the top result, but clicking through pages 2, 3 and 4, you can also see how the website dominates the rest of the result pages. At the time of writing this, my website returned 14 results on the first 4 pages in Google.

But where do I begin? That's a good question and it will always be open for discussion, but the easiest way to start optimising your site, is by adding title, description and keywords tags. Even if you do nothing else, just do this at least.

The mistake most people make, is that they don't optimise their sites for local searches. I see it on a daily basis. Entering keywords that apply to your business is cool, but if you're looking to target the market in a specific area, you'll need to do a bit more. We have an amazing tutorial that will help you to optimise your site for local searches. If you want to be competitive in your area, then this is vital to your SEO.

Another very important and very underrated SEO tool, is social media. I know we recently did a blog post on it, so I'm not going to repeat all that, but here are some more links that could help:

5 Ways to Drive Traffic to Your Yola Website
Yola Gets Gold
Five Ways to Make Google Penguin Love You

I could go on and on and on about the different facets of SEO, but that would become boring and you guys would click away. Just remember that your site will NEVER just magically appear on page one of any search engine. The results I've shown you for my site, took time. I had to learn and read and click and read and learn more, but, considering that I'm no SEO specialist, you can see that it can be done!

If your website is essential to the success of your business, then SEO is probably THE MOST IMPORTANT PART of your website. Don't hesitate to put in the necessary effort, make sure your site can be found. If prospective clients can find your site, you're good to go.

I really hope this helps and that somebody can find value in it. Now, go forth and optimise your site! You're missing out on potential clients.
;)
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Francois, Employee

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  • thankful for SEO tutorials

Posted 6 years ago

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gewgaw.co.uk

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Nice post Francois, I wonder if you can help with a question I and others have posted elsewhere - SEO for my website using ajax driven Ecwid as the shop (see ours at http://www.gewgawgiftstore.co.uk).

I agree with you, SEO IS the most important part of driving customers to an online business. Yola does a great job of SEO on the regular pages of the site, however falls down completely when it comes to the real content of our site - the products.

I had Ecwid running on our site well before the Yola Online Store became available and upload our product listings to Google Merchant which manages to get over some of the deficiencies in SEO. But I can only imagine how much more traffic we would be getting if the site was fully crawlable.

Ecwid has a great way of providing SEO support using their "Inline SEO" configuration but will not work with Yola, at the present time, due to the inability to allow the upload php files. I've tried it on a Wordpress test site and it works beautifully.

I'm in a really difficult position, I absolutely love the great visuals, ease and functionality of Yola and Ecwid cuts down on the need to produce reams of pages for each product, has great usability to be able to have your shop in multiple places around the web (website, social sites, etc.), but what is all that if no-one can find your products or site?

I hope Yola can implement some kind of SEO very soon (Christmas is coming after all!) - and not just for those who purchase the Yola Online Shop, either - there are many like me, who are quite happy to keep the two subscriptions separate.

Thanks, Chris.
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Francois, Employee

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Hi Chris,

Thanks for the feedback! With regards to your conundrum, have you tried to use Ecwid's Mobile Catalog method for SEO? It might not be ideal, but I think it's worth a shot.

Should this not work for you, please let me know so I can contact our representative at Ecwid to enquire about potential alternatives.
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gewgaw.co.uk

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Hi Francois,

The mobile catalog is activated by default, but points to a sub-domain (gewgawgiftstore.ecwid.com or mobile.gewgawgiftstore.co.uk), which, as you'll be aware, doesn't get ranked as high as a TLD by the search engines.

I'm hoping for a more acceptable solution going forward, like inline SEO or other possibilities such as using pushState to change the url - an idea would be to add an Ecwid SEO option to the site settings page where the user can input their Ecwid store id, etc. and click to activate it - similar to the Wordpress plugin.
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Sanja, Official Rep

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Hello,

We actually already have this as a feature request for our Product Team to consider as we know the important role that SEO plays.

I will not be able to tell you when this will be implemented but I just wanted to let you know that Yola is listening to their users and appreciated the feedback given.

A possible workaround is to split your store up so that each category has its own page. Then, you can use the page heading to incorporate keywords specific to that page as you would for a normal Yola page. If you wish to try this, please refer to: Yola Online Store: Categories and multiple stores.
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susan

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This is what I've done with my store (putting each category on it's own page) but so far it's not working as well as it did when I was just using paypal buttons.
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gewgaw.co.uk

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I've noticed my site urls are being converted to pretty ajax urls - that's fantastic news. Will the new #! pages be added to the sitemap as well?
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Stefan, Official Rep

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Hello gewgaw.co.uk

Where are your URLs converted?
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gewgaw.co.uk

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our urls looked like this before a couple of days ago

http://www.gewgawgiftstore.co.uk/#ecw...

now look like this

http://www.gewgawgiftstore.co.uk/#!/~...

I was assuming Yola was implementing Google's method of making ajax pages searchable - am I wrong? If so, is it ecwid that's altering them?
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gewgaw.co.uk

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my bad, just noticed this post on ecwid from yesterday about the new version 13 release -

http://www.ecwid.com/blog/new-ecwid-v...

roll on searchability!
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Gop

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Excellent catch and thanks for the heads up on the updates.
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gewgaw.co.uk

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So ecwid are implementing Google's AJAX crawling technique to help out with SEO, but will YOLA be able to add those pages to my sitemap so I can stop creating individual product pages?
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Valerie Kohlmayr

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Great post! I just took advantage of the Yola Halloween offer and upgraded www.rofasia.com to Yola Gold and was amazed to find out all the issues the Traffic Booster report. I thought we did pretty well on SEO but I have never seen so many F's on a report card :-(. No off to work to fix the issues, thanks Yola!
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Ian McCollum

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This whole deal of yola not allowing my ecwid store to be index is a nightmare. I have been beating myself up trying to get traffic and it turns out it is MY HOST BLOCKING MY EFFORTS.

Yola? When are you going to let our ecwid stores be indexed?
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Monique, VP of Customer Support

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Hi Ian. I understand the frustration. Although the rest of your site is fully indexable we need to make sure that your ecwid store can be as well. We are looking into this and I will email you back as soon as I have more news.
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Ian McCollum

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Thank you. I look forward to this feature being implemented in yola/ecwid. You can see on my site, http://bolsalista.com, that I have followed all of your SEO tips but having each product index will be a much needed boost.
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gewgaw.co.uk

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This was initially raised this time last year and is still no further forward. I'm not so sorry to say I've jumped ship and setup a new site using Magento.

The guys at Ecwid and Google both came up with the SEO solutions to allow indexing of dynamic sites, it's just incredible that Yola are still dragging their feet over this.

I wonder if your Online Shop subscribers understand the limitations?

Bye-bye Yola, it's been a fun and very frustrating journey!
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Boomer, Champion

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Thanks for this Francois - nice post!
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Francois, Employee

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It's a pleasure, Boomer!
:)
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Rui

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One of the best thing ́s yola can do to make the job easier to his users is the ability to give each individual blog post a unique meta description tag, google\bing\yahoo loves that.