Author: Jessica McDonald

Seller Focus – Sarah Kadlic

Like many successful eBay businesses, Sarah Kadlic started out on eBay by selling some of her own things from around her house. When she had no unwanted items left to sell, she decided to try selling one of her paintings.Sarah Kadlic

Sarah: I was always painting as a hobby, so I thought, why not try to post a little painting and see how it goes? I almost pulled the listing down, feeling embarrassed, but someone commented “this is a great painting, I wonder if it could be a little larger”. I was dumbfounded. She liked it?? I sold my first painting for $10 profit. I was hooked. Little did I know my art career had just begun and would last through the next decade and more.

By 2006 I was routinely painting two paintings a day and listing them to my eBay store where I would auction them off. My paintings would start at $49 and sell upwards of $200-$700 sometimes. The auction world was taking off and eBay was at the center. Competition increased though, as more artists came to sell on eBay.

Products Chosen

Advanced eBay design and custom Shopify store.

The Process

Sarah: When I contacted the team at Frooition, they were so responsive and amazing. They guided me every step of the way.

I’d been reluctant up to this point to spend money on my web image. However, the work I had seen the Frooition team do on websites made me realize this would be so worthwhile and would elevate my items and brand!

Selling high ticket luxury items, it was important that Sarah Kadlic’s content and visuals of their website convey luxury, in order to reflect the products and encourage trust from customers.

I was struggling with how to combine my art and jewelry. I kept thinking they should be separated since they are so different, and I wondered how receptive people would be to seeing both together if they were only interested in one or the other.

My Frooition designer Kim thought it would be great to combine both and create a brand name (mine) around them. I was worried about seeing my name in limelight but I trusted my designer who not only had a great knack for style, but she knows a lot about marketing online.

I was really interested in having beautiful pictures and design simplicity and the Frooition designers knew exactly how to arrange this so that customers could shop easily.

People have always commented that my art was fresh and modern, but I never seemed to be able to communicate this through a shopping platform until now.

There is such strong creativity driving this business. Beautiful artwork and a stunning inventory of precious jewelry from a range of eras. Sarah’s designer Kim was tasked with bringing all of these creative influences together to create one cohesive brand image.

Kim: After looking at the wonderful pieces of jewelry and the art that Sarah creates for her collections and reading a little about her business I knew that it was Sarah who needed to be the main brand of the business itself. We then discussed adding each collection under the brand name Sarah Kadlic.

It was important to both Sarah and myself to allow the products to be the main focal point of the store. I didn’t want to create a design that would take anything away from her products. I wanted the design to compliment them. I created a minimal design using a selection of colors that Sarah favored and taking inspiration from the pieces that Sarah Sells. I wanted to create a store design that involved the beauty of her paintings and the elegance of her jewelry collection. I used Sarah’s product images to create all the graphics that are in the design, which highlights the beauty of her inventory.

Conversion-focused on all devices

Whether the customer would be searching for a potential engagement ring on their smartphone during a lunch break or laying on the sofa in the evening browsing artwork from their tablet, we designed Sarah’s eBay listings and website to be optimized for every device. Our responsive design determines the dimensions of the display accessing the website and intelligently delivers the best user experience for each user, regardless of what device they’re using.

Sarah Kadlic eBay listing design on tablet

The Result

Sarah: I now have a Shopify store and eBay listings which look professional and tell my brand story.

Updating my stock is easy because all of my eBay items automatically pull into my Shopify website store.

Everyone I have worked with at Frooition, all the designers and intermediary people have been the kindest, most professional people I have ever encountered online. Respectful, incredibly professional, timely, very responsive. It was a seamless process. I feel so lucky to have found the Frooition team, they were a perfect fit in every way and I got even more than I had hoped for. I truly feel every penny I spent was well worth it!

process. I feel so lucky to have found the Frooition team, they were a perfect fit in every way and I got even more than I had hoped for. I truly feel every penny I spent was well worth it!

Sarah Kadlic eBay design in screenFull view:Sarah Kadlic eBay design


Sarah Kadlic Shopify design in screen

Full View:Sarah Kadlic Shopify design

Essential Guide to SEO for E-Commerce Sites

SEO for e-commerce

SEO for e-commerce is a vital part of customer acquisition and something that every merchant should have a working understanding of.

SEO for e-commerce does not need to be complex or scary. We have broken the following guide down into easy chunks so that by the end of reading you will understand the following:

  1. What is SEO?
  2. How do search engines work?
  3. How you can improve your SEO

What is SEO For E-Commerce?

SEO simply stands for search engine optimization. Improving your website’s search ranking is called SEO.

How do search engines work?

Let’s say you have a website and you sell leather jackets. When someone searches on Google or any other search engine, your website will be in the search results. To make sure that people see your result, you need your website to be on the first page of results. Ideally in the top three.

When you start to show up on the first page, this will bring a lot of free organic traffic to your site.

SEO for e-commerce is needed to get your store near the top of search results.

If 100,000 people are searching for leather jackets every month and you are in the first page of results, you will have a lot of free traffic coming to your site. This organic traffic is:

    • Relevant
    • Free
    • long-term

Paid ads are effective, but the traffic they bring will stop as soon as the campaign stops. Organic traffic is long term. Optimising your site and helping search engines like Google to see that your site is relevant to your key search terms will make your Google AdWords for these search terms less expensive.

How do search engines decide what appears on the first page?

Search engines use hundreds of factors to determine the order of pages shown as a search result. They do not disclose all of these factors, and you cannot control all of them. But if you understand the points which are known, and how to tweak your site to meet these points, you will improve the search engine ranking of your site and gain more organic traffic.

The Index of the Web

When you put a new site live on the internet, search engines send out a programme known as spiders to crawl every page, collecting information.

The main information spiders collect is :

      • Site tagline
      • Headings
      • Keywords
      • Text
      • Content
      • Links
      • Images

The spiders ignore the styling (the CSS) of your site. The search engines store every bit of information the spiders retrieve. This data is referred to as the index of the web.

When you make a search, the search engine goes to its database and searches for entries related to the search term. Usually, there will be hundreds of thousands of results on the list. Now it is time for the search engine to ask questions to decide which results are most relevant and useful to you. According to Google, they ask over 200 questions to determine relevance. These questions include;

      • How many times is the search term mentioned on this page?
      • Is the search term in any headings?
      • Is the search term in the URL?
      • Is this page from a low or high-quality website?
      • How many other websites link to this page?

From these questions, Google will give every page a quality score. This page is now shown to the user, with the highest quality results at the top.

By making our web pages easy for spiders to crawl and information easy for them to find, we can increase our quality score and appear higher in search result rankings.

Google will automatically crawl your website, but if you want it to be done immediately you can manually submit your website to Google. It’s very simple. All you need is your website URL. You can submit your website to Google here.

How to make sure your site is easy to crawl

Connect Pages

Your home page is where a spider will start its crawl. It will then look for a link on that page to the next page in your website, which it will follow and look for a link to the next page, and so on.

A common error made by many e-commerce sites is burying their product pages deep within their link structure. This will not only make it more difficult for users to find products, it will also impact the product pages PageRank score, making those pages less likely to appear high in search.

Having product content only a link away from your home page will make them easier for both the search engines as well as your customers.

It is good practice to link every page on your site so that the spiders can access all of the information for your site and store it all together.

Text in images

Bots cannot properly read text in images. Bots are very advanced now and do recognize text in images, but all search engines, including Google, advise people not to put important text in images. If you use important text in images, you run the risk of it not being crawled and so not appearing in search results.

savonne-1  savonne-2

The example on the left would not do anything to help a website gain ranking for the search term “Emily sotto wedding dresses” because the text is inside the picture. In the picture on the right, the text is a header outside of the picture and so would be collected as crawl information and help the page to show for this search term.

ALT Tags

An image’s alt text is a short description that describes the visual. This short description shows in place of an image if the image fails to load, and matters when it comes to SEO. Search engines can’t read pictures the same way they can read text, so you need to use this attribute to tell search engines about their subject matter.

Because shopping online is highly visual, image alt text is even more important. Your site will probably have a lot of graphics—and when people search relevant keywords online, you want those graphics to show up.

Like your title tags and meta descriptions, ALT text should be as descriptive and accurate as possible.

Bad: No ALT text

Okay: “swimsuit”

Better: “Speedo Swimsuit”

Best: “Speedo Ladies one piece high leg swimsuit”

To edit an image’s alt text in BigCommerce or Shopify, hover over the image and click the “Alt” option.

Along similar lines, make sure you’re titling your images appropriately. When you upload them, their file name might be something incomprehensible like “38670209347.jpg.” Google uses the filename to learn more about the image, so something like “boy-playing-frisbee-beach.jpg” is far more useful. (Make sure you use dashes to separate words, or Google will interpret the entire file name as a single string.)


Keywords or search terms are just the words people type into a search engine when they are looking for something.

The search engine looks for these keywords in the index of the web. Keywords are an important element of SEO because you need for your website to be there when the search engine checks the index of the web for searches relevant to what you sell.

There are a few different categories of keyword you need to be aware of:

  • Generic:”Laptops” – Lots of traffic, high cost, low conversion.
  • Branded:”HP Laptop” – Relevant for enterprise level retailers and brands
  • Long Tail: “Gaming Laptops under £800” – 70% of search is longtail and it is the best converting of all the search types.

You must consider both traffic and competition for your relevant keywords. Traffic is how many people are searching using that particular keyword or phrase, and keyword competition is the measure of how difficult it will be to rank for a particular keyword.

Perfect keywords for starters would have around 1,000 searches per month and low competition.

You can research keywords using a research tool. There are lots online, but I like as a really easy beginner tool. You should also use the keywords everywhere chrome extension. These tools let you see how many people are searching for your keywords, how competitive terms are, and even see what your competitors are ranking for.

Unique Content

Building your product database can be a time-consuming process, and in an attempt to save time, many online store owners simply copy and paste the manufacturer’s product descriptions onto their website.

Duplicating content this way is why e-commerce sites tend to get penalized by search engines.

Online store owners need to assess their website and look for ways to reduce the amount of redundant and duplicate content that is present on their website.

Careful usage of the rel=”canonical” tag can help avoid these problems as well.

Always re-write every single product description to ensure that it is unique and search engine friendly. Remember to use several words that people are most likely to search for.

Improving Search For Customers and Search Engines

SEO for e-commerce is not just about showing search engine spiders what they want. It is about ensuring that your customers get the content they want when they search.

Improving Your Meta Descriptions

Search engines don’t factor this section—also known as the meta description—into their rankings. In other words, you could write the words to your favorite nursery rhyme and Google wouldn’t penalize you.

But search results are read by humans, and humans want a clear, concise description of what they will find on a page to help them decide if they should click on it or not. A compelling meta description means they’re likelier to visit your store.

Also, because search engines do use site popularity in their rankings, meta descriptions do indirectly affect your SEO.

    • Specify title tags and meta descriptions on every page
    • Include keywords in meta descriptions
    • Use action-oriented meta descriptions to call readers to “Find quality [product name here]”

Meta descriptions should include keywords, but don’t simply restate your title tag. Finally, keep it accurate and under 160 characters.


Video Appears in 14% of Internet Search Results. Google also says video campaigns will soon be grouped just like any other ad through AdWords. That means videos will soon be even more likely to show up in Google searches.

Google wants to promote results with video because its what people like. 73% More Visitors will buy after watching a product video. Video also increases time on page, and as mentioned previously, this can help to improve your quality score and ranking.

Adding video to product pages with BigCommerce and Shopify is easy and is great for customer conversion and SEO for e-commerce. With Frooition design you can also add videos to your eBay listings.


Blogging is a great way to offer useful content to your customers. Because it is useful and unique, search engines like this content. It may even be shared by readers, which spreads links back to your site.

BigCommerce and Shopify stores come with blogs as standard. It is easy to add social share buttons to these blogs with an app.

Ebay catalogue product focused shopping experience

eBay product based search results

Ebay has introduced product based search results for one simple reason; what works for buyers, works for sellers.

The buyer experience improvements which encourage customers to buy more items, and to buy more frequently, result in higher turnover for sellers.

But what improves the experience for customers in one category will not always be an improvement for customers in another category.

The great thing about eBay is their commitment to creating a truly diverse marketplace that works for all sellers and all customers. With over 26 million sellers and 170 million active buyers, that’s no small feat! Ebay has to constantly monitor buyer behavior and respond with changes to create the best eBay for all buyers.

The latest change that eBay has introduced to improve the buyer experience is the introduction of product based search.

This change will not affect sellers in all categories, but for the handful of selected categories where eBay has chosen to implement this selling style, it is because it is shown to be the preference for buyers.

Categories with eBay catalogue product focused shopping experience

eBay catalogue product focused shopping experience

How eBay catalogue product based shopping experience works

When a customer searches on eBay they are usually presented with a long list of results. It is then the customer’s job to refine this list using the filters provided.

Some customers love this. It is their preferred shopping style for everything. They want to see every option, browse, and discover before they buy. But for most eBay customers, this is only their preferred shopping style for some things. I may enjoy browsing designer shoes, but just want to buy the newest I phone at the best price from a trustworthy seller as quickly as possible.

As a general rule, it is true to say that the more clicks a customer has to make to find the item they want, the more likely they are to lose interest and leave the site without buying.

This is where eBay catalogue product based shopping experience comes in.

With the new eBay catalogue product focused shopping experience, a search for iPhone X or Google home will shows buyers a more clearly structured results page.

For items like an iPhone X or a Google home, there is no browsing for a unique version. These standard items can be presented to customers as a product page which makes it quicker and easier for them to get the information they need to purchase.

Product pages group identical items together. It is important to note that products are not ranked based on price alone. Search results on eBay are presented based on many factors including:

  • feedback scores
  • delivery options
  • returns options
  • seller history

The search below for iPhone X shows that the 1st and 3rd item are identical in everything except colour. The top result has 26 five star reviews though, and result three only has 7. Result number one is the most popular product in the category, and so it’s the one most customers searching “iPhone X” would be looking for.

Other buying options being presented in the result box alongside the top option offers customers transparency and allows them to immediately assess how competitive the price is.

Ebay catalogue product based shopping experience is not about price

Amazon uses product-based search, but results are ranked on price alone. This is good for some buyers, but not all buyers, and it is never good for sellers.

Ebay will not be encouraging sellers to discount products to try and improve the ranking of their listings.

The top result from this search is not the cheapest. The right-hand side of the result shows that the phone is available for less money brand new from another seller. Looking at this cheaper listing, we can see that this phone is being sold by a seller with only two positive feedback.

ebay catalogue product based shopping experience

A low price will give sellers with less positive feedback a way to get increased exposure for their items, but eBay will present the best option for customers as the top result. That means the most trustworthy seller who offers the best service at a competitive price will be the featured item.

The best way to improve the ranking of your eBay listings is to create attractive, informative listings; build positive feedback, give free delivery, and offer free returns.


The top result was from Music Magpie. The phone is refurbished, but Music Magpie have a massive amount of positive feedback and a solid history as a trusted seller. They are also offering fast free delivery.

Points to take away

  1. eBay catalogue product focused shopping experience only applies to a few select categories
  2. eBay catalogue product focused shopping experience rewards good sellers by promoting their listings
  3. eBay catalogue product focused shopping experience is what customers want
  4. You can improve the ranking of your listings by:
    • Offering free delivery
    • Creating a great buying experience with eBay policy compliant design
    • Offering free returns
    • Focusing on great service and getting excellent feedback

Sellers who focus on providing great service are likely to get more listing views with eBay catalogue product focused shopping.

This change is massively positive for all the hardworking, genuine sellers who consistently offer great service in these highly competitive categories.

Shortening the eBay customer journey

customer journey

A sale starts long before the checkout. The customer journey includes the emails people receive and the social media posts they see encouraging them to visit your listings, their product searches, viewing listings and researching options before committing to clicking that buy now button.

Anyone searching on eBay for a product you sell is a potential customer. They may find you when they are in the early research phase of the customer journey, or when they are ready to commit to purchasing.

Most customers will find your listings through eBay search and you can’t control what stage they are at when they find you. All you can do is create listings that fulfill customer’s needs at every stage, shortening the customer journey and converting more of your listing’s views into sales.

Be Informative

When looking for a product, customers don’t just shop around for price, but also for product information.

The more questions that your listing can answer for a customer, the better.

If you sell a blender that can blend fruits, vegetables, and nuts, then you should list all of those things. It is not enough to say that it’s a powerful 800w blender. A customer will be looking for exact information that answers their questions in easily relatable terms that they can understand.

If a customer wants to make beetroot juice and lands on your blender listing that doesn’t specify it can blend hard vegetables, they will leave your listing to keep looking for the information they need to help them decide to purchase. They may buy the same blender from another seller, simply because that was the listing they were on at the time their question was answered

The best listings consider all of the questions a customer may have in their mind and answer them in a variety of ways. Some of the best ways are:

  • Detailed description
  • Bullet pointed key features
  • Measurements
  • Well filled eBay product specification
  • Product photos from all angles
  • Product in hand picture to show scale
  • Video of product being used
  • Video of customer testimonials

A video is especially powerful as it is effortless for the customer. It also shows us information that may be difficult to convey in text or flat images. The blender for example; how loud is it? If this were a consideration for a customer, a video would be a far more effective answer than a specification of decibels.

Blendtec is the perfect example of a brand who took full advantage of the power of videos in their product marketing. Blendtec manufacture blenders. They managed to make this normally mundane item go viral with a series of videos entitled “Will it blend?”. The videos combined humor and popular culture with product demonstrations and sent Blendtech’s sales skyrocketing.

Video can be embedded directly into eBay listings with Frooition listing design. Read more about video for eBay.

Cut out landing pages

Cross promoting other items of your own within your listings is an effective way to control the customer journey.

But cross-promotion which takes a customer to a landing page before they see the listing they have selected just ads an extra step into the sales process. It increases the risk of a customer just going back to their main search results. Create a fast and enjoyable shopping experience on eBay by letting customers take the most direct route to the item they want to view.

Frooition eBay cross-sell features take your customers directly to your listing. Speeding up the customer journey.

Use a dynamic sales assistant

One of the worst kinds of delay in the eBay customer journey is landing on a dead listing. The immediate reaction for the customer will be to click back to search results, and you will have lost them. It is important that cross-promotion is dynamic because clicking back to search results will most often lose you a sale.

The best cross-promotion in eBay listings acts just like the best sales assistants in a physical store; suggesting other items that are interesting to you and taking the work out of the shopping experience.

Dynamic cross-promotion only shows live listings that you say are relevant.

Dynamic cross-promotion gives you control and lets you make sure that your customers are seeing the most relevant items you have to end their search.

Research from Bain & Co showed that companies who excel at customer experience grow revenues 4-8% above the market. Dynamic cross-promotion improves customer experience.

Super seller Linda’s Stuff uses her dynamic cross-promotion in a very clever and intuitive way; suggesting related products not just by brand; but by size, colour, and style too.


Demonstrate Trust

When researching, customers are not just comparing products, they are comparing sellers too. This is especially true with high-value items.

Your feedback score is obviously very important on eBay because this is a clear indicator of trust.

Being clear with your delivery and returns policy is also important. If you offer free delivery or returns, make a clear point of this. A promotional box in your listing or even a dynamic tab that can show different delivery and returns options for different product categories would be perfect for this.

Be Flexible with delivery

When customers need something quickly or guaranteed for a certain date they will be going through listings comparing delivery options. Shorten their journey by letting them find an option that suits them.

Delivery is a guaranteed way to differentiate yourself from sellers offering the same products.

Delivery doesn’t always need to be free to attract customers. There are situations where customers will pay a premium to receive an item quickly. The more delivery options you offer, the more sales you will make.

Ways To Thank Customers and Encourage Loyalty

thank customers

Your customers make your business. Without them, your store is just a Website. No doubt you are thankful for the loyal customers who buy from you regularly. It is important to thank customers; to keep them loyal, and hopefully even encourage them to share their great experience with friends.

There are so many unique ways to say thank you that there’s no reason why your appreciation shouldn’t delight customers, even when it’s done on a shoestring. These gestures don’t go unnoticed either. When you thank customers in unique ways, they’re likely to share it publicly. Consider our favorite ways to surprise a customer with a thank you:

Write a note

A handwritten note is probably one of the most inexpensive and effective ways to show a customer your appreciation. It is not often we receive handwritten notes now, so this will really stand out to your customer.

Your note should be specific and personal. Write fewer notes if you need to, but maximize the impact. The extra time is worth it. You’ll make your customer’s day — everyone loves receiving real mail!

  • Use the customer’s name
  • Consider your choice of stationary

Give the gift of knowledge

Share your knowledge in ways that your customers will find useful. The more educated your customers become, the more they will appreciate your products, thus the more valuable they are to your business. Longer pieces of content can be shared via a blog, but shorter things can be shared via Facebook or Instagram. Facebook live is one area where merchants are getting really great engagement, and its the ideal place to share quick tutorials or product videos.

Start a loyalty program

A point-based loyalty program where frequent visitors earn points is a great way to reward visitor loyalty. Your rewards program doesn’t have to be complex; it can be as simple as offering customers free shipping for x number of points.

  • Make it easy for visitors to determine the value of their points. Use round numbers. Don’t set up something like 27 points is worth $1.
  • State clearly how points can be exchanged for rewards. Don’t roll out mystery rewards where customers can’t even determine what their points mean, or why should they care.
  • Use apps like Sweet Tooth with Shopify or BigCommerce to customize your loyalty program and have frequent visitors access it from desktop as well as mobile.

Remember Special Days

Thank visitors who shop on your site frequently by greeting them on special occasions such as birthdays, anniversaries, etc. Doing so will help you develop an emotional bond with your faithful visitors on a more personal level and trigger positive responses when they visit your site the next time. While you write greetings for all your visitors, take time to write a separate message for the regulars.

Give to Charity

Nothing says thank you like a thoughtful donation to someone in need. Donating a portion of profits to charity helps customers to understand more about your brand values, and encourages them to buy. You can this a step further by donating a small amount in honor of each customer. You can send a personalized note to every member of your community describing the gift and make everyone’s day.


The element of surprise is a powerful thing. Thank customers with a free, spontaneous upgrade. You can play database roulette and pick five customers at random, or make a list of your most loyal customers and send the upgrade to the highest-ranking. In e-commerce, this works really well with offering selected customers unlimited free shipping for a month.

Airlines mastered this practice decades ago with their frequent flyer programs, and it remains a great way to delight customers. It also acts as a great way to build customer loyalty and creating brand advocates.

Thank for feedback

This one probably comes naturally when the feedback is positive, but it’s even more effective to thank customers for the improvement areas they bring to our attention. All businesses have room for improvement. By thanking customers for their feedback, you show that you are a business which values customer’s opinions and embraces the opportunity for improvement.

Reach out to customers to tell them how you’ve implemented their suggestions. There is no better way to communicate with a customer than to show them you were listening.

Let the conversation also be an opportunity to gather more feedback. You want customers to feel like they have an open line of communication to you at all times — whether that’s for praise, complaints or questions.

Family and Friends Discount

If you have a customer who really loves shopping on your site, send them some discount vouchers to share with family and friends. This is a double win, as the customer will feel appreciated, and also act as an advocate to their family and friends, winning you more customers!

Excel at customer service daily

Nothing says thanks for your business better than a friendly, informed service. It’s incredible how customers relax and become more receptive when a human with personality and feelings answers the phone, rather than a robotic voice reading from a script.

Same goes for email — personal and friendly replies make customers feel valued. Let your customer service team’s personalities shine through!