Artist, Craftspeople - Your Personal SEO online- How to protect it!

Venues love to steal your thunder and your SEO and use it to steal customers that want your products. The Search Engines could care less and I feel are in cahoots with this process 100%. Wonder why when you go to google with exact details of Your merchandise in the search bar you see your items from venues before you see your items from your website?

You probably sold or removed a lot of the items you see in search yet they still point to places like Amazon, Ebay and Etsy? some of these items may be over ten years since you removed them from the venues. This is called Black Hat SEO and is about the rottenest thing a site can do. Zero moral values and zero concern for you the artist and crafts-person that created the product ,name, picture, and description. They pretend the item still exist and submit it to Google as if it does exist but once you click on it the page says sold and then they do their best to redirect you to other products.
The company name, product name, picture, and description should be yours but not so and if you go to google images or google inline search results .. you will find out the hard way. Competing with imaginary copies of your own products that google gives priority to because they pay google is no fun at all.

Do not confuse good free advertising with stolen SEO or redirected urls that do not point to where you are selling. there is a huge difference. ask.. is it helping you or can it help you?
So.. What can you do to stop this if it is not helping you? You can stop it but you must be on top of things constantly and follow a few rules. I will state the rules below and reasons if possible.

1) It may be too late to continue using your present company or domain name but maybe the damage can be repaired that has been done. Try repair first and as last resort try using a different name for your company and your products and possibly new pictures and new descriptions. The company name, product name, picture, and description should be yours only. Starting new is not that hard to do and makes the search engines re look at you and what you do as a new fresh product.

2)What got you in this mess? This is the key to fixing things. the #1 cause of almost all of these issues is VENUES. They are great and serve a purpose but they steal your SEO in most cases. A few exceptions exist but a very few. You list an item on say Etsy with your company name, your company description, title and pictures. The next day they are on google with an url pointing to Etsy and often with a fine selection of your competitor's similar items. Your website items are sometimes found on Google.. well below Etsy's version of you.

Solution- don't list on Etsy or list on your website with a totally different name and description. Keep in mind Etsy pays Google a lot of money monthly. Etsy is the preferred customer.. not you.
also be sure to use google to submit a site map and submit often various urls to be indexed by google. I do 10 pages a day of my site when i can  (often) Use "Fetch as Google" to do this and you are allowed up to 500 pages a month. This works.

List things on your website under a name that is not used on Etsy and products you do not sell on Etsy with a description not used on Etsy and preferably pictures not used on Etsy. Give out cards with each order pointing to your website. Discount coupons work well also. Eventually you will be at the top of search on Google as there is no other items that are like yours on Etsy. Try a mailing list and perhaps do shows and give cards out.

Ebay- the same applies but Ebay only submits fixed price to Google so you are safe with auction items but not safe with fixed price items. Ebay also has better SEO practices that tend to not steal as bad and items roll off the search quickly -not the case with Etsy. Other sites.. best to expect the worst and be prepared. Protect yourself.. see above.









Sellers - Ebay Etsy Amazon or Personal Website?

Ebay Etsy Amazon Personal Website- What is your choice? A mix or none of the above :-)
Venue Fees are a factor and they vary by site and include FVF (final value fees) credit card and payment processing fees. Item listing fees, store or shop monthly fees, annual contract fees on stores if you close them(Ebay), advertising fees. some account types include a certain number of included free listings (ebay) Amazon is free listings and monthly fee. Etsy is per listing fee but cheap, 5c a month.

Website Fees- generally monthly and can vary as the type of hosting you have. You can go it alone with a simple host company like hostgator or godaddy or get a site that offers a website already designed to facilitate selling with a payment processing option built in and forms to list item pictures and descriptions. The later is by far the most popular. the prices vary and some actually have the gall to charge a FVF on your sales after you pay a monthly fee. Be careful, shop around. try supaduma.me  UK company that has long term website experience and a fantastic track record of support including a 800 phone number for USA to call them. some other things to greatly consider- Support, limit of amount of inventory per monthly fees charged. how the site runs? can you use your domain name? will they set this up for you? IS IT EASY TO LIST AND SET UP?

Paypal fees you really can not include here but some sites are now processing their own buyer payments. That would include Amazon and Etsy. Paypal is still part of Ebay and is their main and only preferred payment system so technically they are part of Ebay still.(imo)
Sales- the main reason we bother :-) Sales at the venues are the reason they remain in business. Some sellers do better at some venues than others and it really varies from merchant to merchant even with similar merchandise. For me to suggest a venue over another would simply reflect my experience , nothing more. You have to test the waters with what you offer and do it constantly.

http://mbsy.co/fzQpC  <- no idea how this code works but if you sign up call support and ask for the discount - 20% for 4 months i think.

 UK Support Hotline:
0208 968-6285
 US Support Hotline: (free- weird hours- UK time early mornings are best)
(855) 787-2387
I have been using this company for about 5 years so I can promise they are very good. I also have researched a lot of the other sites for Sellergroup.com registered member purposes so i do know.

I will not slam the Larger sites here by name but.. please be careful. I fully believe the so called top 10 website building sites are a ripoff. add the fees up and then the benefits they offer as opposed to the amount of product space you need including growth for future. Keep in mind you will need to promote yourself with a website else it will be a waste of time and money. An exception to this is if you are using it jointly as inventory management as this is a working solution and a place to move inventory around between venues. more on this later and some warnings about SEO theft by venues of your products. (next article)








Lots of USA Cities Ban the American Flag on Fire Trucks

I have to admit that Living In Las Vegas makes me proud! We do not Ban the American Flag here on fire trucks nor do we require them. :-) a perfect balance in my opinion.

Those that do ban the flags should get booted from political office by the voters of America. Perhaps they could move to some country that thinks like they do? I imagine they were also like the draft Dodgers in Vietnam War and never protected their country other than sucking off the public for a free ride. Why is it always the politicians that sit behind a desk that are the whiny little complainers about things like this?
I did a google search on this subject- Amazing!




Online Sales and Politics in 2016- Sellergroup News

One has to wonder how "Sales" will be this year online with the political season being so heated. Many are sick of the way the two candidates have turned the fight to the lowest level of trash that can be remembered, ever. :-) but then again some are entertained to the maximum with all of this. I have to admit that i am of the later. LOL.

Like when a natural disaster strikes or war coverage- the political coverage has become intense beyond normal. The TV coverage is good but the internet can get more into the details and be addictive. I do think more are going online for news and one wonders if this will help sales or hurt or be a wash. :-)

I do hope that Sales are fine this year and that with cooler weather more will be inside and buying online for the holiday seasons throughout the rest of this year and into next year. I imagine that the Elections will have it's toll on sales both online and in retail stores both.

One good thing about the internet is it is growing daily as a better source of News and more people turn to it for updates on issues like Politics and world events. So it could even help Sales this year. Store Sites and seller's Venues this year with online stores are a lot better represented online in 2016. It will be interesting to see the online sales stats after the year is over.






Website Promoting Methods 
  How to Promote your Website 
-Part Two

A lot of things you can do to promote your website, new site or older. One thing that is almost a sure bet is that if you do not promote your website you will not get the amount of traffic you want and deserve. The reasons Venues do ok is they promote and most of the promoting they do also is free. A lot of the venue promoting is done by the sellers to promote their shops on the venues.  I suggest you focus on free promoting until you are ready (if ever) to pay. Often paying has zero results except to feed the person you pay.

Promoting for free generally involves a few categories - Shows- passing out cards, direct mail pamphlets sent with existing orders, email lists, links on Blogs and websites pointing to your target website. These are THE MOST powerful tools to help get you traffic and they are obvious. use them if you can. The details are the key to promoting as is the consistency that you promote. Keep a log and promote as often as you can. This also is how you promote your Brand so do not be so tuned in to results. It is not a magic potion and the results are slow generally.

Then there is Google, Bing and social media. Social media includes Instagram, Personal Facebook, FaceBook Groups, FaceBook Business pages, Twitter, Pinterest and more. Most of these methods are obvious with the exception of Bing and Google. They require some work and as you get it set up .. it is easy. Best to get a system in place and do it often.

Google needed links after you have a google account: Google Webmaster tools (google it) Bing has a similar set up.
 
https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/googlebot-fetch

https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/

https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/search-analytics

Site Maps
https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/sitemap-list

Site maps - you will need to google this on the internet and I suggest create one if your website provider does not provide this service. many of them do including supadupa. There are many free sites that will create a sitemap for you with a link to submit to google. this is do-able. check your internet website provider first.

You will need to get your website verified as yours with google in order to use these tools. Be sure to use the www,yoursite.com as opposed to yoursite.com the www version is considered different from the non www. most website providers are well aware of these tools, issues and will help you to verify your site as needed. That is their job and it is generally simple- you pay for this service when you pay them. If you are hosting your own website you will need to insert one line of code on your index page. also simple.

Google indexing your pages- submit thru Fetch - you can submit 10 main pages a month and Google will crawl the pages and all links. Select the main pages for this as you only get 10 a month. then you get 500 pages a month for more selective crawls. use them as often as you have time to submit. No free rides here- this is time consuming :-) results? yes.

This is not meant as a complete how to article but a general map of how to and we do have a comments area for questions. Most all of the answers can be gotten on google search. More on all of this as we go through the rest of this article.




Comments

Website Set up and Selling
Advantages and Difficulties -Part One

Starting a website- First off I highly recommend it if you are willing to do the work involved in setting one up and making it work. Technical Expertise is not required these days. :-) seriously. there are some fantastic sites that are reasonably priced that have fantastic "Themes" and work well (easily built by you) with great customer support. Don't only look at USA sites either.  This article is designed for those that have products for sale only and will be many multi parts in length. I will be getting into the finer details as we go along. I will try to do this in the order that most who get websites have normal questions.

Pricing- Perhaps the #1 question and for reasons we can all understand. :-)  Websites start at zero. Many are free and I do not recommend the Free ones that I have seen. Tictail.com is free and many sites offer a free or nearly free intro site to give you the feel of how things work. I have looked at the most popular sites and to be honest.. most are a rip off. The are big companies with huge budgets and you the customer paid for this. This does NOT result in a better site, or an easier to build site or more traffic.. what it results in is more fees for you to pay.

I do recommend a few sites Indimade.com and supadupa.me (supadupa.me is a great UK site- my TOP choice). Supadupa.me starts @$9 goes to $19 for 450 products and $29 for unlimited bandwidth and Products (the $29 plan is the absolute best deal on the net in my opinion) They bill monthly.. this is a very serious concern as you DO NOT want to get into a contract on a website unless you are 100% sure you like it and it works for you. Often it will take a few months to get used to a site and you may not like it. Those that do not offer monthly billing do so for a reason.. Crappy support and a crappy site and they know most will leave quickly if they are not in a contract. Start at the lower monthly charge if available and see how you like it. if you have to sign a contract.. tell them to go to hell.

Offering a huge discount to pay by the year says they know this is a fact that many leave. if any here decides to go with Supadupa.me as I did. this is a coupon code that will save you 20% for 4 months
 

http://mbsy.co/fzQpC  <- no idea how this code works but if you sign up call support and ask for the discount - 

 UK Support Hotline: 
0208 968-6285

 US Support Hotline: (free- weird hours- UK time early mornings are best)
(855) 787-2387

I have been using this company for about 5 years so I can promise they are very good. I also have researched a lot of the other sites for Sellergroup.com member purposes so i do know. I will not slam the Larger sites here by name but.. please be careful. I fully believe the so called top 10 website building sites are a ripoff.

The biggest issue is "how many items do you plan on listing" on your website and do they accept Paypal payment systems for your products and other methods. Is the Support good? can you call them on a phone and talk to a real person and also do they have a good Help section on your personal Control Panel. How many pictures can you list per Product and what is the total storage capacity allowed for all of your pictures. Is their site solid (runs well and up 99.9% of the time) and does it have a good track record of not being buggy? Does the site allow you to have your own Domain name and does the name belong to you? Domain names are paid for annually generally and are separate from website building companies. Godaddy is NOT the only domain name host on the internet :-) look around and price around.

I will try to continue this article weekly until it is done. (part 1 of 10)


Comments





Website SEO Name Recognition Thoughts

If you are or have in the past sold on venues like Etsy you know the frustration of the Nasty SEO tricks they use. Once you list an item that item stays on google forever and points to Etsy and since Etsy is paying google.. Google does not mind one bit. Request to get your item removed from google will result in nothing. Nothing you can do. zero. Face it and move on.

So what can you do to help yourself? I suggest you select another name and never use it to list an item on another greedy internet venue. They would steal your life blood if they could and sell it to the highest bidder. Use this name only with your website products. place the name in the picture names, Description, SEO Tags, and the title. Link to your personal websites using this name but only to your website.. see the logic? never cut and paste anything to a venue that has this name in it.

This also applies to items you sell if you have a unique name for a product. If you listed them to a venue .. you are screwed as now the venue will use that name to attract buyers forever and ever with Google's full consent - as long as they are paying Google.

If you are like me.. the best idea is to start fresh and do it right. Get new names and follow these rules.. never give these names to a venue to screw you over for years to come. Etsy in particular. Unfair tactics and unscrupulous practices go hand in hand with greedy internet venues.

Comments












 Tips on Listing on Ebay and Etsy by Sellers

A few tips for listing on Ebay and Etsy trying to get more done in less time and still do a good job.

Main Folder- Set up a main Folder to hold pictures and descriptions

Pictures- use a number system example #25a,b,c,d,e  and t for thumbnails if you use them. always use small letters. Ebay requires 500pixels per side minimum.

Title and Description Keywords- numerous titles are good too if listing in various places. you can research your stats on etsy for search terms. they help in titles and key words. a doc file for each item with matching # to pics or a master doc for all depending. eliminated formatting if you do it from scratch or use a text file for pasting in old info.. as it removes formatting.

Actual Listing- mostly cut and paste if you did something similar to above and reusable for various sites and websites.

lots of ways to do this but putting a system in place is best.









Sellergroup.com Jokes Thread :-) 2nd Edition


A sweet grandmother Telephoned St. Joseph's Hospital. She timidly asked, 

"Is it possible to speak to someone who can tell me how a patient is doing?" 

The operator said, 

"I'll be glad to help, dear. What's the name and room number of the patient?"





 Unidentified Collectibles Adventure
By NookCove

Adventurous curating for NookCove leads to unidentified collectibles. Who knows what an estate sale will have hidden in their hodge-podge boxes or single items, a yard sale where one person’s junk is another person’s treasure, and let’s not forget thrift shops where the sorters don’t know the identity of an object and slaps a price sticker on the item. Such adventures are addictive.

This is my latest unidentified acquisition from a thrift store: three green-painted, glass material, tree-shaped ___________; where to begin to fill in the blank. Known about the objects is:

A set of three
Peeling green paint
Made of glass
Tree shaped
Concave glass within the object
Bubbles in the glass
No seams in the glass







Ebay Collectibles and Vintage Internet Sales

Collectibles are a very large part of internet sales and encompass a large variety of different types of items with a lot of these crossing over into even broader collecting areas. Collectors in the USA alone certainly are in the high millions if one was to look closely. Some collectors border on the fanatic to collectors that are just beginning. Ebay is by far the largest most successful site as a collectibles venue (among other things :-)

In fact Ebay was started by a pez collector  looking for a pace to sell his items he did not want. Pierre Omidyar was born in 1967 and has a place in Henderson NV town next to Las Vegas. His net worth is $7.5 Billion.

I think he was just another guy back in those days :-) LOL

Ebay really did start as a collectible venue in 1995 with Pierre Omidyar writing the code to make it work. History was created in the USA and parts of the world as Ebay has been an Icon every since. It was and still is a much needed company.

The internet and especially Ebay helped collectors take their obsessions to the next level. :-) New material showed up over night that many collecting areas had never seen before. As the collecting fields mature this is fairly uncommon these days. I would suggest most collectibles have decreased in value with some greatly increasing as nothing is a better judge of rarity than to see either none offered for sale or a few million of the item. Price guides of pre internet days are often way off as to value, being often way too high or equally often way too low. I do think the more obscure collecting areas you are dealing with the more often this will apply. In the more common collectible areas as Stamps and Coins they generally are fairly set in price , of course always considering the various grades of quality and condition.


The more people that join a collectible area to start a collection, the more in demand the available total inventory becomes. Some items are in fact unique in nature or certainly near unique. Example Civil war photos of certain Confederate Soldiers, usually signed. Of Course if it is a family relative the value becomes much more to the collector.

It may be a great idea to research what you find in the attic or basement before pricing and certainly auction it off on Ebay as opposed to selling at a garage sale . :-) Most items can be found on Ebay or similar and at least give you an idea of it's value. The great thing about a 10 day auction on Ebay is it will find a fair buyer most likely if you describe it correctly and place it in the correct category. Good Luck!


















What are Facebook Groups?

Facebook groups are very popular among Craftspeople and Vintage , Supplies sellers and just generally selling things that can be sold on the internet and shipped out. Picture uploads are an option and settings specifically designed to aid sellers are also. Facebook Group privacy setting range from Private to Public with a few variables also.

The groups are free and members can be invited or added if they are your FB friends. They also may request to join. Most groups are specifically about a subject of supposedly common interest to the members. example: glass boro handmade beads. With the help of a Paypal account most groups are able to offer items for sale that can be paid for and then shipped to the buyer.

Most groups set up their own rules and these vary widely to accommodate the needs of that particular group's goals and purposes. I have expected FaceBook to put controls on the groups but I have seen little done in this area. Other than rumors and a special optional format available to the groups for selling there has been little changes. I would imagine it is a little like trying to herd cats if Facebook was to try to control the groups. :-)



















Promoting Yourself & Your Products on the Internet

 Venues are a love Hate thing, Most sellers need them yet know it would be best to try other ways. Other ways rarely work as well as the venues so you are stuck. Personal websites require a lot of self promotions and a good knowledge of how to work things. Doing Shows is a great way to get traffic and get and keep your customers. Care needs to be taken to not direct them to the venues.
 


2-18-16






















Camera Tips and Your Camera Type

What Tips have you used on your Camera that you are willing to share? What type of Camera do you use? What settings do you use when Taking Product picture and What type of lighting do you use? Anything Else that would add to helping with Online usage of Digital Cameras? Read our Member replies below:



Suggested Website Providers List

A list of Internet Website Providers we suggest for readers starting their own websites. These are sites we use and provides comments both good and bad :-) that our users have experienced with their products and support. This thread could be very helpful to you and worth a read as it progresses in size. It is of course the opinions of the various users. ........... read more from link below:













How do you Bag or Package
your items you sell at shows?

I am going to sign up for a craft fair in the next month (beforehand I will be attending a show to get an idea of how these fairs work)...but I just wanted to know when you sale an item how do you wrap it for the customer?

I guess how would I wrap my stuff, bowls and ceramic ware. Would I need bags, what kind of bags? Boxes? any sites to buy these types of packaging would be greatly appreciated............see more below



NEW- added Vintage and Handmade crafting Tips






Household Tips from Sellergroup.com Members

a little tip that has already reduced stress in my kitchen.
I may be the last person in the world to know this, but I will share it with you
just in case..................

*** Push in the tabs on the end of the foil or plastic wrap package. It holds the
roll in place and is much easier to use!... see more below













Some Great Jokes from Sellergroup Members

I have a terrible time remembering jokes, but this one has stayed with me.

A mushroom walks into a bar.

He hops up on the bar stool, calls the bartender over, and orders a drink.

The bartender looks him up and down and says, "I'm sorry, I can't serve you."

"I don't understand." says the mushroom.

"I'm sorry, I can't serve you." repeats the bartender. "You're a mushroom."

The mushroom responds, "But why not? I'm a fungi!"

see more below ...:-)










How to tell Fake Druzy Drusy Quartz from Real Druzy Gemstones

Druzy or Drusy got its name from the fuzzy optical effect you get while looking at the overall piece or stone The name was created when the Arizona Druzy Blue Chryscolla was found. Sometimes this looks velvet almost but the crystal sizes get larger and the overall optical effect changes.

My druzy has mostly medium sized crystals. Solid and strong they do not flake off and all are on a solid natural base of Jasper agate. Extremely durable and strong. I can honestly say the Nevada Druzy is the absolute best Druzy in the world ... continue with article link below




added new article to above- A Druzy Quartz Rock Hunting Trip Log and Blog Article












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Sellergroup FaceBook 5 Groups -
Totally Free to join & use

Gems & Jewelry
 
Supplies  

Handmade  

Vintage  

Sellers Buyers Lounge 

Combined Main Group











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