Retail is being redefined every day. Everyone still looks at their bottom line sales, but it doesn't matter anymore if the sales are from foot traffic through the front door or via shipping boxes out the back. While most retail businesses are still struggling to figure out how to bring foot traffic back in the front door, I submit that it's probably easier to learn what it takes to build your ecommerce business and increase the flow of shipped product instead.
It's time for the weekly case study of a website that's pretty old and in desperate need of a makeover. I call these weekly posts my Friday Flop Fix review. During these reviews, I look for websites that are implementing search engine optimization strategies poorly, or have poor website designs and I suggest ways to make them better.
This week, I searched Google for the phrase "jewelers Zanesville, OH" and was shown these results:
In this week's website review, I'm heading over to Laramie, WY in search of a good jewelry store. My hope, like most savvy internet users today, is that I'll find a good jeweler based on the information they have on their website. If the website I find happens to be a total flop, well, then I'll give some suggestions to fix it.
I write these website reviews every Friday to demonstrate how to apply new SEO techniques, online usability, and content building to pre-existing websites that need help. ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
In preparation for this weekend's MJSA and JA Expo at the Jacob Javits center in NYC, I'm jumping way, way back to my fifth Daily Golden Nugget from July 30, 2010 about photography. I've written about photography many times since then, written product reviews about the VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
A few weeks ago, I was privileged to present a photography workshop at MJSA ConFab. Even though I don't necessarily like to be known as "The Jewelry Photography Guy," I seem to be gaining that reputation. After all, this was the 4th time I've enjoyed teaching jewelry photography techniques at an MJSA event.
I'm always being asked the same few questions about photography, which usually includes questions about macro lenses, lighting, and ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
This is Part 8 of my annual special Daily Golden Nugget "Holiday Run-Up" series packed with tactics to help you during November and December this year. I started this series with an overview of the marketing strategies that have worked over the last 12 months and have been expanding on each idea every day since.
This is Part 3 of a multi-day Daily Golden Nugget series packed with tactics to help you in your 2015 holiday marketing. The series started with the overview of 2015 holiday marketing strategies. Today I'm specifically covering the topic of...
This is the Friday website review edition of the Daily Golden Nugget. The goal of these weekly reviews is to evaluate a random retail jeweler's website against website design methods, SEO strategies, usability, and technology trends. I use Google Chrome in incognito mode to find every review candidate with a basic local search phrase. I also try to capture my first impressions in these reviews and write them during my initial pass through the website.
I angst a lot over the poor photo quality I often see used on jewelry websites and in print ads. Someone will never know the detail of intricate fine jewelry unless they are holding it in their hand or looking at a perfect quality photo.
I have a simple idea of a perfect quality photo: just be in focus and properly lit.
I like to use photos with interesting backgrounds to attract attention and then high definition photos with pure white backgrounds on the product det... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
In this Daily Golden Nugget, I'm going to analyze the photography of a popular e-commerce jewelry site. In this exercise, I hope to reveal some aspects of photography that you can apply to the photography on your own jewelry website.
For this exercise, I'm going to search Google for the Verragio style INS-7074R. This is a very popular engagement ring style and it's easy to find many different website selling it. What I hope to find is a website that took its own photos instead of using the photos ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Your e-commerce website will thrive or starve based on your jewelry product photography. This is a tough topic that I've spoken about at the Las Vegas JCK show, at MJSA Expos, and have even given presentations to students at the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC.
One of the common errors in the English language is the confusion between the words Champagne and Champaign.
Champagne is a region in France where the sparkling wine, champagne, comes from. Those French "regions" are similar to states in the US. Although there are vineyards all over the world that produce sparkling wine, it's not "champagne" unless the grapes were grown, and the wine was produced in that region of France. The capital city of Champagne is Epernay, which I visited a few years ago. I've include... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Photography is something that many jewelers angst about all the time. Jewelry photography can be a complete nightmare to do yourself or expensive when you hire a professional. Jewelry photography will make or break the e-commerce sales on your website.
However, today we actually don't care about jewelry photography. Instead we want to talk about other photography on your website, specifically, photos of YOU!
That's right, you... Your smiling face should be somewhere on your website, as well as the rest of your employees'. This personal touch will appeal much more to the local customers that you're hoping will actually walk into your store.
Your photo, and other staff photos, shouldn't be reserved just for your "Meet Our Staff" page either. Sure, that's where they also belong, but why not have photos of you and yo... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
You will probably have the worst nightmares about photography during your entire career with a jewelry website. Hiring a professional will cost more than the website design and programming, and taking them yourself often results in blurry jewelry with gray backgrounds.
Let's face it; good-quality photos appeal to users more than blurry, unclear images. In addition, bloggers, Facebook users, and Google+ users are more likely to link to (or share) a good-quality image rather than an ugly smudge on a gray background.
Other than linking and sharing, a crisp, sharp image will also appear better in a thumbnail version that Google will display in the search results, and therefore may be more likely to get clicks and visits.
Yesterday's Nugget was pretty long to get through, but we really needed to explain how to use Google Website Optimizer ( http://bit.ly/qEVCUP ). It is such an important tool and it's easier than Google Analytics. Although, if you are still wondering what you would want to test then today's Daily Golden Nugget is for you.
Some basic things to test with Google Website Optimizer: 1. Captions on images 2. Font size, line spacing, and font family 3. Adding or reducing white space around the site 4. Culling your content or swapping it with bullet points 5. Font and link colors, underlined or non underlined links 6. Button sizes and colors 7. Jewelry photography methods using different background other than pure white 8. Headlines 9. Repositioning your call to action message<... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Good photography of your products is the only way you can sell your products online. Even if your website is ugly, good photography and good customer service will always sell jewelry.
However, there is a point of diminishing returns when it comes to your photography, and it has to do with the file sizes.
A typical jewelry product catalog will show a ring in 3 different sizes: 1. As a thumbnail on the browsing pages. 2. As a medium size image on the product description page. 3. As a large image when you want to zoom in to see details.
The lazy web programmer will use the same image for all 3 purposes, but there's a serious drawback to this. You would need to use the largest image, that is image #3, for all locations. Except that large image can be 600KB or more, and we've even seen images as large as 3MB.VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Photos and images can really spice up a website, well, that is they can spice up a website if they are done correctly.
Jewelry websites are especially vulnerable to poor quality product photos since jewelry photography is actually pretty tough.
We have a skewed opinion of jewelry photography, in that we believe it should be true to the item and not photo retouched. You don't want the customer opening their eagerly awaited online jewelry purchase to be met with disappointment because your photography was too good.
It's especially important to include some type of scaling comparison in your photography, like a coin or a pencil for example. Avoid using a real hand unless you actually hire a "hand model."
A professional photographer will charge anywhere from $25 to $200 per item photographed. It all depends on h... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
The anatomy of a website is extremely diverse. Some websites have pages of information, some have product catalogs, some have photo galleries. Even if you are using the same content management system as someone else, no 2 websites will ever be alike.
Websites are just like people: some tall, some short, some fat, some thin, some wear lots of color while others are dressed in plain, white clothes... figuratively speaking. Different parts of a website are used for different reasons too, just like your feet help you walk, your hands allow you to write and type, and your eyes let you read.
You probably never consciously think about it but your feet, hands, and eyes serve you differently. Would you attempt to walk or run using your hands in everyday life?
Determining the correct size of an image to use on your website can be tricky. Your website probably has a standard image size setting, and if you learn to size your images correctly your users will have a quality visual experience and a pleasant browsing experience.
The first thing you need to understand about website images is that no two web designers use the same terminology. Some designers will ask the "size" of an image when they want to know the pixel dimensions as they appear in the web browser; whereas the "size" for someone else actually refers to the kilobyte size of the file saved on the hard drive.
Jewelry photography is very difficult. You won't sell anything online or attract attention to your store if your photos are too small to see detail, of if the images are too grainy. Grainy images are also referre... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
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