Monday, February 6, 2012

Search engine optimization existed before search engines

One of Loren Feldman's clients is Acer's Home and Garden Center in New York. Now I probably wouldn't patronize a home and garden center that is thousands of miles from my home - with my lack of gardening skills, I rarely patronize home and garden centers within two miles of my home. But it's interesting to see the material, which demonstrates Jim Ritchie's knowledge of gardening.

In a recent video, Ritchie is demonstrating a little knowledge of Loren Feldman's area, noting how Acer's website is showing up on search engines. Here's the video:

But I want you to notice something about the video. Look behind Ritchie. There's a row of shelves there. Some products are at the front of the row, while others are along the row. Some products are on higher shelves, and some are on the bottom shelf.

There's optimization going on there, too. And that optimization has been going on long before there were such things as search engines.

Sylvester da Cunha explains various shelf position tactics:

Traditionally, "eye-level shelving" is best, followed by "waist-level", [knee-level] and ankle-level" . It is near impossible to locate all the items at eye-level and store experience have proved that consumer responses to shelf locations depend upon such other factors as the product package size, whether or not its being advertised, its need for visibility and intended market segment.

Studies have proved for instance that when a heavy 54 oz juice product was shifted from a non-visible lower shelf to a higher visible location the sales instead of increasing dropped by 15% because of the difficulty experienced in lifting such a heavy item.

Lower shelves hold definite merchandising opportunities for children. Chocolates showed an increase in the range of 14 to 39 per cent in their sales as they were clearly visible to the 'junior' target group.

Now a number of studies have been done on shelf product positioning, but when you think about it, it's all common sense. Don't put kids' products six feet above the store floor. Thank you, please pay me $2,000 for that advice. (Gotta get that smartphone somehow.)

The same common sense applies to online marketing, which is why Jim Ritchie's simple act of describing what his company does enabled his page to be found by search engines.
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