Before definitively deciding rugs were my passion, I cannot recall a
conversation with anyone in the business where they did not pass along
'The Infamous Insider Tip':
"Don't go into the rug business." Partially spoken in jest, but it is a difficult business. In addition to the current market, owning a retail showroom in conjuntion with any 'competition' is not exactly the best pot of stew. Perhaps Rug Dealers are giving up? Should the next generation of rug enthusiasts give up? The market is significantly different than years past, but it never ceases to amaze me how many rug dealers are quick to dismiss opportunities. It's a weakness that's been 'swept under the rug.' It's a weakness that has to do with a void in understanding internet basics (partially covered here) and Search Engine Result Pages.
Just a few hours ago I was on the phone with a representative of an otherwise reputable retailer here in the States. After some discussion, it became quite clear how his perception of internet marketing was not only indifferent, but also clearly not a priority. "Working with [Rug Rag] is a drop in the bucket" he said. He then continued: "We already rank in position "x" [removed] for 'oriental rugs' in google." My jaw dropped. WOW. I almost didn't feel like explaining it to him. So I didn't. Seemingly closed to reciprocal benefits, clearly not interested.
Maybe he missed out, but it's here now for those interested! Keyword "Oriental Rugs" has an approximate average monthy search volume around 74,000 according to Google. That's a good number for this seller's target keyword.
However, according to SEOSearcher.com in a 2006 Cornell University study, some 56.36% (or ~41,000) of the 74,000 clicks will go to the first site listed in a google search! Extraopolating and distributing this data further, only a 2.11% average click distribution is held for sites between a 6-10 position. That means Number 1 position will receive 26.25 times the amount of traffic of the average click distribution of positions 6-10. That's a steep rollercoaster! Literally 88% of traffic will go to spots 1-5 in a search result. To add to search result benefit, a significantly higher amount of time will be spent by users on higher ranking sites.
Celebration Of Mediocrity is a party you won't find Rug Rag attending. If this retailer is satisfied, that's good. It is a solid accomplishment but it not only does it need "maintenance," but search position could improve significantly. These positions fluctuate, and do so on a somewhat regular basis. Competition is heavy online, but between just a select group of e-tailers. The unnamed gentleman I spoke of above doesn't have a main objective of online conversions. However, they do have rugs for sale online. So, what happened to branding, online recognition, exposure, increased traffic and SEO benefits? Don't get me wrong, this is not about advertising or money. It's about opening doors for free.
Upon ending the conversation, it was then that I put all the pieces together. Everything made sense. I know many people who are not internet savvy but pass it off as "nothing." Fact is, the sellers who are ready to embrace networking online with reciprocation are those who will pull through and rise to the top. It may take patience and time, but it's a lot more productive to learn basics than it is to pass things off and be embarassed later. If you can see the video below without having to download a plug-in, my hat is off to you. You are already better off than 98% of rug sellers when it comes to computers:
There is a tremendous amount of untapped potential in the online world. Those who are looking for a spot of 1-5 for keyword "Oriental Rugs," we have good news: It may have gotten easier as the gentleman we spoke to seems to have forgotten those who want it, get it! Are you in the bottom 11.64%? Do something about it!