By early 2007, Mike Anderson at partycheap.com realized his online store had a problem. His custom built ecommerce solution was not scalable. It was good for about 10-30 orders a day, but could not handle the volume of orders he received at that time.
Mike decided to go with Volusion’s online shopping cart with a very serendipitous result: partycheap.com’s internal product pages were being indexed by Google and other search engines. Customers began to find his holiday-themed party supplies, costumes, and decorations directly on search engine result pages.
As soon as Mike and the staff at PartyCheap realized that Volusion’s shopping cart was improving their search engine results, they decided to capitalize by improving the site’s content. “We had top ten search rankings for some of our key theme party terms on our old site, but only on a couple of category pages. With Volusion, each single product page has the opportunity to get ranked. Once we realized the advantage the Volusion software gave us, we spent a lot of manpower filling out the meta tags and writing unique content for not only categories, but for individual products as well. It’s hard work, but over a three month period our organic search traffic has doubled,” said Anderson.
The term “hard work” is an understatement from Mike Anderson. Mike and the PartyCheap staff used two people full time for two months to fill out metatags and keyword rich product descriptions and category pages for over 6,000theme party andholiday themed supplies, decorations, and costumes. They also used Volusion’s internal search reports to figure out what customers were searching for and created searchable categories for those as well.
What does Mike think about Volusion’s more css-driven, SEO friendly Version 5? “The upgrade was straightforward and our customers didn’t even notice the difference.”
Although Volusion’s tools have made their business more scalable, they vow to continue putting in the work it takes to bring in traffic and close sales. What advice does Mike have to offer other merchants? “Running an eCommerce storefront is a never-ending job. Anyone who thinks they can just open up an online store and expect money to pour in is going to be disappointed. Focus on small fundamentals, product selection, vendor costs, marketing ROI, and transaction costs. The advantage that Volusion gives us is that they take care of the technology and we can focus on our specific industry.”