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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : August 06, 2008

How to get the most from comparison shopping engines

Comparison shopping engines (CSE's) have become a huge buzzword for etailers across the globe. These engines take the most economical price points from merchants in their networks so that consumers can easily find the best deals. However, some merchants within the networks aren't seeing great results; they need to optimize their CSE profiles.

by Kristina Knight

Here are a few tips to do that.

First, comparison shopping engines - like traditional search engines - are very information friendly. The more information you provide the more likely a consumer will find your specific listing rather than the listing of a similar merchant. So, fill out every field offered in the listing agent, whether that field is mandatory or optional.

Second, use complete brand information. Do not replace a manufacturer's model number with your own reference number, this can hinder your placement within a search query. When filling out the product information listing, include both the brand name and the manufacturer's model number and if possible place that model number in the product name bar. This will reduce the number of listings your placement is up against, increasing your chances of catching a consumer's attention.

Third, look at the pricing options offered by the CSE to determine which price-point is best for your budget. CSE's offer many payment options - pay per click, pay per redemption, pay per acquisition and flat fees. Choosing the right method could be the difference between a huge ROI and a middle of the road ROI.

Fourth, don't imitate the big boys. Huge merchants like Shopzilla or Amazon approach ecommerce differently than smaller etailing hubs. Rather than imitating the keywords purchased by these competitors figure out how to market the product in your stores so that it stands out from other listings.

Comparison shopping engines can be a huge benefit to etailers when used correctly, the trick is to set your listing apart from the hundreds of similar listings within that engine. Once you've done that, the battle is half over.

Tags: comparison shopping engine, cse, ecommerce, etail, online shopping

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