This is the #FridayFlopFix edition of the Daily Golden Nugget. Each week, I look for candidate websites that are not ranking very well in Google search results and dissect them to figure out why they are ranking poorly.
This week, I searched for "jewelry stores Florence, SC" to find that poorly ranked site. I found an interesting situation with the store Fisher Jewelers & Silversmiths that I'll investigate today. I first noticed the AGS listing for the store shown here:
I found that in the 5th place on page 2 of the search results before seeing the main website for this jeweler. I eventually found the Contact Page of their website on page 3 of Google results, shown here:
The Fisher website is http://www.fisherjewelersandsilversmiths.com/. This is what it looked like when I first visited:
At first glance, I found it hard to imagine that this site would be ranked on page 3 of Google. It has a new design and plenty of photos, and it's even mobile-friendly, therefore there must be a deeper flop that needs to be fixed.
I also noticed the use of the HashBang--that's the #! Character combination--in the URL that might be causing a low ranking. This is the URL for their jewelry page:
The hashbang topic is quite technical, but you can read more about it here and here.
WIX Killed Them
I didn't realize it at first, but their website is devoid of written words. Every page is a photo gallery and every photo gallery is loaded through a hashbang AJAX script. Google doesn't yet have the ability to understand what's in a photo. Every page of your website still needs some written text in order for Google to understand what you are selling.
Fisher built their website using the WIX service, but as I'm about to illustrate, this particular WIX setup is harmful for their business.
To really understand what's happening here, we have to look at the background code. I've compiled this long screen shot to show it:
There are huge sections of AJAX code that power the hashbang feature. In essence, this website is a single skeleton page without any information. That large AJAX code magically makes the photo galleries appear when you click a link from the top navigation.
After a close inspection I realized that the flop here is that Google can't decipher the AJAX code that WIX created. According to this Google forum thread, this problem started in September 2015 and hasn't been fixed yet. As of this writing, that was 5 months ago.
First, the fix for this website is to move away from WIX. At this point no one should be using WIX, or any site that uses the hashbang technology. Clearly Google isn't perfect and those hashbang website have been trouble for a long time. There's no need to use that technology any more. Those of you with a WIX website should move off it.
Second, your website needs written text and images, preferably more text. As of today Google can't easily understand photos and relies on page text to correctly classify a website.
That's it for this weeks; I'll see you next time...
FTC Notice: I randomly choose this website and won't be telling the retailer jeweler that I'm giving them these flop fix ideas. Unless someone else tells them, they will only find out about this Nugget if they use Google Alerts or examine their Google Analytics and Google Search Console. I'm not doing this to solicit business from them, but rather as an educational exercise for everyone. This #FridayFlopFix is completely impartial and all my comments are based on previous experience in my website design and marketing agency, and from my personal research data.