Stepping into the sticky world of toner, ink and printers!
Having had the privilege of providing my search optimisation services to a number of online retailers in the past, I was excited and nervous starting my new job at tonergiant.co.uk. Nervous mainly because I’ve never touched a printer in my life, but I was half expecting it to be like any other ecommerce site I’ve worked on in the past.. How very wrong I was!
Like any other new site I start working on, my first point of call is to look at backlinks.. and sure enough (as with all ecommerce sites I come across these days) there are some ugly, hideous and downright un-holey links. The types of links that make you stop what you’re doing and gauge out your eyes, you know what I’m talking about! Porn sites, link networks, Chinese Viagra sites you name it, I found it.
With the links situation dealt temporarily dealt with by webmaster tools disavow, I decided to have a ponder through our analytics and get some background on how your average toner and printer searcher behaves, which lead to some surprising finds. Having had a crash course in printers it came to my attention that the type of toner or ink is very specific to the machine it’s used in, meaning there’s a lot of toner search revolving around brand + model and printer model + toner. To me this signals a complex yet excellent opportunity for SEO strategy involving keyword targeting and relevance boosting to gain rankings thick and fast!
Your average link building or agency strategy is to bombard your homepage with all the links under the sun, so link value filters down through your category and brand structure from the homepage. With toner cartridges and ink being very specific to the machine it means we can bring brand relevancy down to product level, as essentially there is no category level with the site being about ink and toner – the hierarchy is toner > brand or printer > product. Cutting out category level gives us the ability to build deep links at product level bringing brand relevance and authority to both the brand page and the product page. Reversing the link building process back up the hierarchy!
What’s surprising about this is generally ecommerce sites have to share link equity and value with both brand and category page depending on how the site is structured, in our case there is only one line of link value and printers + toner can be treated as a completely separate optimisation project.
The beauty of a specialist ink cartridges website is that you can focus all of your link acquisition efforts into one single sharp spear of keywords, targeting variants of keywords like Epson toner at every level – nuking your relevancy in Google and spreading link equity across the site.
I’m certainly looking forward to implementing my tactics here at tonergiant.co.uk and will keep you all updated with a future blog about my progress and hopefully achievements!
Written by Ryan Holt