How we attract customers through search marketing

A group of women very happy with their shopping

The Little Things in Life sells all kinds of jewellery, including special accessories for weddings. Tactical use of pay-per-click advertising and SEO has ensured it consistently gets to the top of internet searches

Peter and Angela Bishop opened their online jewellery business - The Little Things in Life - in mid-2006. It started selling fashion and costume jewellery, but it has developed several specialist areas that have proved to be incredibly successful.

"Jewellery is still a key part of what we sell, but we now have three other important areas," explains Peter. "The first is wedding jewellery and accessories, the second is jewellery stands and mannequins, and the third is fascinators - these have really taken off," says Peter.

Getting found online

Peter and Angela certainly seem to have cracked the two key challenges facing any online business. Firstly, attract people to your website and get them to buy, and, secondly, provide products and a service that keep them coming back for more.

"Our marketing is all online," says Peter. "We've been using search advertising since we first set up and we're still using it today. We also advertise and have links on other websites, such as bridal sites and shopping sites to bring people to our website."

Peter employs someone to help with pay-per-click and search engine optimisation, but he's no novice when it comes to online marketing. "We get a lot of business from people finding us in searches. You've got to be on the first page."

Search marketing tips and tricks

It took Peter a couple of years to see which keywords work best and really make the most of pay-per-click advertising. "Believe me, it's a big exercise," he says. "We understood the basics quite quickly but it took us a couple of years to really understand all the potential of search advertising and you are learning all the time. It's worth it, but you have to dedicate a lot of time to it."

Peter has discovered that some terms are already bringing up his website from natural (unpaid) searches - so he uses other keywords to maximise pay-per-click results. He's also found that negative keywords are very important. "We've found that you have to put in a lot of negative keywords. We don't do Indian wedding jewellery, for example, so we put 'Indian' in as a negative keyword."

Getting the basics right

Above all, though, great customer service is at the heart of The Little Things in Life. "We attribute a lot of our success to our customer service," says Peter. "We always ship that day or the next at the latest, and all our prices include delivery. We know people get irritated when postage and packaging is added on.

"A lot of customers have thanked us for our speedy delivery, and they really appreciate the free postage."

Ecommerce content edited by Chloe Thomas of eCommerce MasterPlan.

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