This is a continuation of a series of website marketing checklists. Check out all Web Marketing Checklists in this series.

What this is about: This list covers general points related specifically to ecommerce websites. While not everything here will apply to other sites, there is information that can be gleaned and applied to service related websites, as well as others.

Why this is important: Being able to convince the shopper to follow through on the purchase is essential to being profitable. The visitor looks for specific cues that help them assess the creditability of the site and the security of their information. Providing these cues will help you provide a better experience that leads to deeper customer satisfaction.

What to look for:
  • Mini-product basket always available: If you use mini-baskets that update in real time as products are added, make sure they are available throughout the entire shopping process.
  • Displays payment options: Whatever payment options you provide, let the visitor know what they are long before they add their first product to the cart.
    • CC: If you accept major credit cards, display their icons in a conspicuous place.
    • Paypal: If you accept Paypal, be sure this is a known option early in the shopping/checkout process.
    • Google Checkout: If you accept Google Checkout, be sure this is a known option early in the shopping/checkout process.
  • No multiple paths to dupe product pages: Make sure there is only one workable URL per produce, even if there are multiple paths to each product.
  • No tracking IDs in URLs: Avoid using tracking and session IDs in URLs. Look for more search engine friendly means of keeping track of a visitor's session.
  • Exclude shopping cart pages: Keep the search engines out of all shopping cart pages. These aren't the pages they are looking for. Move along. Move along.
  • No (or nofollowed) links to secure pages: Avoid linking to secure versions of product pages (using absolute links in cart helps prevent this.)
  • Keep secure cert current: Make sure that your secure certificate is kept up to date. Expired certificates create security warnings that scare off would-be customers.

Stoney deGeyter is the President of Pole Position Marketing, a leading search engine optimization and marketing firm helping businesses grow since 1998. Stoney is a frequent speaker at website marketing conferences and has published hundreds of helpful SEO, SEM and small business articles.

If you'd like Stoney deGeyter to speak at your conference, seminar, workshop or provide in-house training to your team, contact him via his site or by phone at 866-685-3374.

Stoney pioneered the concept of Destination Search Engine Marketing which is the driving philosophy of how Pole Position Marketing helps clients expand their online presence and grow their businesses. Stoney is Associate Editor at Search Engine Guide and has written several SEO and SEM e-books including E-Marketing Performance; The Best Damn Web Marketing Checklist, Period!; Keyword Research and Selection, Destination Search Engine Marketing, and more.

Stoney has five wonderful children and spends his free time reviewing restaurants and other things to do in Canton, Ohio.


This ecommerce checklist is as good as the one shared in your web marketing checklist...Thanks... :)

Thanks for the checklist. Will definitely help in providing better E-commerce sites to our clients :)

Excellent list - I'd only add two things

CLEAR navigation - I know you've included this in your other "lists" but it doesn't hurt to add it again. And navigation is vital on an ecom site.

Multiple search options - not everyone finds products the same way. If you ahve a lot of products for sale, category pages as well as simple and advanced search really helps.

If you have products that can fit more than one category, enter them in every category that is appropriate. If you sell thigns that can be sub categorized have more than one main category page - list supplements by both categorized Ailments and categorized Products for example.

Let the customer search by manufacturer if you carry someone else's products.

Hint: Try to make one of your search systems mimic Amazon stores. People are familiar with the Amazon search structure and using a system they are comfortable with helps both sales and the all important trust factor.

And whenever possible use a one page checkout system. Multiple page checkouts often lose the customer before the final "yes I want this order" click.

@ Karen - good point on the navigation and while I deliberately repeat things from one list to another, i figured the navigation list had this covered. But it never hurts to mention it again (and again and again) :) Same for the search option.

All good points. I appreciate your comments and contributions here. I agree fully with the one-page checkout, if it can be done without creating too long of a form. But fewer clicks is almost always better.

great post!I agree with the clear navigation. The customer should be 2-3 from the products.

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Search Engine Guide > Stoney deGeyter > The Best Damn Web Marketing Checklist for E-Commerce Considerations