Search Engine Optimization

Search engine optimization or SEO in short, is a set of rules that can be followed by website owners to optimize their websites for search engines and thus improve their search engine rankings. Search engine optimization is essential because the majority of search engines users are more likely to click on one of the top 5 suggestions in the results pages.

A Web crawler, is an Internet bot that systematically browses the World Wide Web, typically for the purpose of Web indexing. Web search engines and some other sites use Web crawling software to update their web content. Web crawlers can copy all the pages they visit for later processing by a search engine which indexes the downloaded pages so the users can search much more efficiently.

Meta tags are a great way for web developers to provide search engines with information about their sites. Meta tags can be used to provide information to all sorts of clients, and each system processes only the meta tags they understand and ignores the rest.

Spamdexing is the deliberate manipulation of search engine indexes. It involves a number of methods, such as repeating unrelated phrases, to manipulate the relevance or prominence of resources indexed, in a manner inconsistent with the purpose of the indexing system.

A natural search is one where results are returned based on the natural indexing of the Web site, as opposed to those that are returned based on paid advertising and editorial changes made by the search engine itself such as paid advertising.

Attributes in SEO

By researching your market’s keyword demand, you can learn which terms and phrases  target the SEO. Meta descriptions are HTML attributes that provide concise summaries of webpages. Page title gets you more hits because it’s memorable or concise, but it also helps your search engine ranking. Your domain name is how users will find, remember, share and identify your company online. In both social media and search engines, the domain name is the primary way by which users can identify where the link will lead.

Search Engine Marketing Methods

Pay Per click or PPC is a advertising model used to direct traffic to the websites. Essentially you pay when someone clicks your link and is directed to your site.

Paid inclusion is a search engine marketing model in which Web site owners pay a search engine company to guarantee their sites will show up in search results.

Video Marketing is designed to combine the power of video and internet marketing to create visibility for websites or businesses.

Sponsored Listings are paid advertisements in the form of a hypertext link that shows up on search results pages. The ads are typically for products and services that are generally or very specifically related to the keywords in the search query.

Google Adsense is a program run by Google that allows publishers in the Google Network of content sites to serve automatic text, image, video, or interactive media advertisements, that are targeted to site content and audience.

Hats in SEO

Black hat SEO refers to the use of aggressive SEO strategies, techniques and tactics that focus only on search engines and not a human audience, and usually does not obey search engines guidelines.

White hat SEO refers to the usage of optimization strategies, techniques and tactics that focus on a human audience opposed to search engines and completely follows search engine rules and policies.

Search Engine Guidelines


  • Ensure that all pages on the site can be reached by a link from another findable page. The referring link should include either text or, for images, an alt attribute, that is relevant to the target page.
  • Provide a sitemap file with links that point to the important pages on your site. Also provide a page with a human-readable list of links to these pages.
  • Limit the number of links on a page to a reasonable number (a few thousand at most).
  • Design your site for all device types and sizes, including desktops, tablets, and smartphones. Use the mobile friendly testing tool to test how well your pages work on mobile devices, and get feedback on what needs to be fixed.
  • Ensure that your site appears correctly in different browsers.

Web Analytics

Web analytic tools provide the measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of web data for purposes of understanding and optimizing web usage. However, Web analytics is not just a process for measuring web traffic but can be used as a tool for business and market research, and to assess and improve the effectiveness of a website.


Commerce is, quite simply, the exchange of goods and services, usually for money. We see commerce all around us in in millions of different forms. When you buy something at a grocery store you are participating in commerce. In the same way, if you place your possessions onto your front lawn for a yard sale, you are also participating in commerce. If you go to work each day for a company that produces a product, that is another form of commerce.

There are several roles in commerce:

Buyers – these are people with money who want to purchase a good or service.
Sellers – these are the people who offer goods and services to buyers. Sellers are  recognized in two different forms; retailers who sell directly to consumers and wholesalers who sell to retailers and other businesses.
Producers – these are the people who create the products and services that sellers offer to buyers. A producer is always, by necessity, a seller as well. The producer sells the products produced to wholesalers, retailers or directly to the consumer.

All of commerce at its simplest level relies on buyers, sellers and producers. Although there are also complications inside of commerce such as its elements.

  • You must have a product or service to offer.
  • You must also have a place from which to sell your products.
  • You need to figure out a way to get people to come to your place, or marketing.
  • You need a way to accept orders and money.
  • You need a way to deliver the product or service.
  • You also need to accept returns and provide customer service or technical support.

With e-commerce there tends to be lower transaction costs and larger purchases per transaction. Other websites may offer customers other items that are similar to what you are looking for or what other people who ordered this item also purchased. Ecommerce provides the transportation of the item in a reasonable amount of time as opposed to regular commerce where you’d have to retrieve the item your self. With e-commerce anything you order conveniently comes right to your mailbox.

Customer interactions are also improved as well. From your comfort of your own home you are able to virtually communicate with sellers or businesses to make any inquiry related.

Ecommerce Platforms

paypal-logo-previewPayPal Holdings, Inc. is an American company operating a worldwide online payments system that supports online money transfers and serves as an electronic alternative to traditional paper methods like checks and money orders. The company operates as a payment processor for online vendors, auction sites and other commercial users, for which it charges a fee.

oc_logo-500x500.pngOpenCart is an online store management system, using a MySQL database and HTML components. Support is provided for numerous languages and currencies.Unlike Shopify, OpenCart is open source meaning webmasters have the ability to make any changes to the design or functionality of the website. However, this also means that hosting and website security will need to be setup manually. OpenCart also has  “extensions”, between $10 and $50 that allow users to easily customize the website with ease.

shopify-platform-logoShopify has done everything they can to make setting up and running an eCommerce website as easy as possible. They handle all the hosting, security, and credit card processing to give store owners more time to focus on promoting their website. However this also means that webmasters are somewhat limited when it comes to changing how the website functions and looks. To combat this, Shopify has a wide range of website templates and apps. While there are free apps available, many have an associated monthly fee which can add up quickly.

Security in Ecommerce

Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and Transport Security Layer (TLS) are both protocols used to encrypt communications between a web server and a user’s web browser. Both SSL and TLS encrypt these communications by exchanging public and private keys to create a secure session. TLS uses slightly different cryptographic algorithms for MAC function generation of secret keys and includes more alert codes than its predecessor, SSL.

SET, short for Secure Electronic Transaction, is a standard that will enable secure credit card transactions on the Internet. SET will enable merchants to verify that buyers are who they claim to be. And it will protect buyers by providing a mechanism for their credit card number to be transferred directly to the credit card issuer for verification and billing without the merchant being able to see the number.

HTTPS also referred to as HTTP Secure is a communications protocol for secure communication over a computer network which is widely used on the Internet. HTTPS consists of communication over Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) within a connection encrypted by Transport Layer Security or Secure Sockets Layer. The main motivation for HTTPS is authentication of the visited website and protection of the privacy and integrity of the exchanged data. Htaccess or hypertext access file is a directory-level configuration file supported by several web servers, used for configuration of site-access issues, such as URL redirection, URL shortening, and Access-security control.

You can obtain server certificates such as SSL from an outside certification authority (CA), or you can issue your own server certificates by using Microsoft Certificate Services.

Payment gateway is an application on an e-commerce website that allows the website to link the client payment account with the website’s account. Payment gateways allows for the credit account details to be secure instead being sent online. There are some advantages to payment gateways such as : Guaranteed fraud protection, customer personal data protection, and supports multi-currency payment processing. Although your payments may be frozen along with your account at any time.

There are several ways to make payment processes easy in ecommerce.

  • Provide a Number of Payment Methods
  • Allow Payments without Requiring an Account
  • Have a user-friendly design and archietchure
  • Don’t Redirect People to other sites
  • Ask for Essential Information Only
  • Provide Reassurances on Security and Privacy


PayPal Payments Standard is loaded with everything you need to get paid online, including a checkout experience that’s already optimized across devices. PayPal allows you to make payments using a variety of methods including: PayPal balance, bank account, PayPal branded debit and credit cards, PayPal Credit, debit card, and credit card.

You don’t need to have a Paypal cart to process payments through Paypal. There are other alternatives such as Squarespace, Shopify, Wix, Woocommerce, and Magento. Paypal is completely free as of installation, although you are required to either convert to a premium or business account to take money for services or goods. Paypal typically charges a transaction fee. Fortunately Paypal is a platform that doesn’t require you to have a long term commitment with, so you can cancel at anytime.

With PayPal, you do not need to store and protect customers’ sensitive financial information because they do it for you. This enforces fraud protection for both the seller and consumer. Regardless of whether you are using PayPal Express Checkout or Website Payments Standard, your customers do not need to register with PayPal before they make a purchase.

When a customer reviews a product and makes a purchase through their Paypal account they are required to submit a payment method. This could be through Paypal or a card. Paypal offers methods such as Paypal balance, bank account, Paypal credit and more.

You are able to transform the Paypal checkout layout and design to match your website if you were wondering. This is extremely beneficial when trying to keep a certain design or css.

Paypal offers encryption ability through every transaction. Encryption is the process of encoding a message or information in such a way that only authorized parties can access it. PayPal delivers one of the most secure payment platforms in the world. Their team of security specialists monitors transactions and identifies possible suspicious activity, helping to protect you from fraudulent transactions.

There are no monthly fees or hidden costs with PayPal. PayPal does not charge a fee to open a PayPal account. Although, the fee for each transaction is 2.9% plus $0.30 USD of the amount you receive.

In order to integrate Paypal into your website you must follow a few steps:

  1. Open the PayPal button creation page
  2. Enter payment details
  3. Add product options and prices
  4. Customize the button text and appearance
  5. Override default shipping rates
  6. Associate transactions with your PayPal account

Finally, click the Create Button on the Create a PayPal payment button page, and then copy and paste the HTML snippet to your web page.

If your client doesn’t want to use Paypal remember there are always alternatives, although Paypal may be the safest platform as it offers encryption and minimum information input requirements. Squarespace, Shopify, Wix, Woocommerce, and Magento are all alternatives to the Paypal shopping cart.