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Increase Conversions by Fixing HTTPS Errors

This entry was written by one of our members and submitted to our YOUmoz section. The author's views below are entirely his or her own and may not reflect the views of SEOmoz, Inc. drow names Imagine an elderly grandmother – we’ll call her Grandma Moz. She’s about to make her very first online purchase. She’s used a computer before, but feels some anxiety giving out her personal information over the internet. Then, just when she’s about ready to enter her credit card number, the following message pops up: What does Grandma Moz do? If she is like 30% of most internet users, she runs and hides her credit card back into her wallet never to be seen again. And the unsuspecting website loses the sale. The 30% is not a statistic based on a large data set, but rather the experience of an actual client website I work with that recently installed HTTPS on its checkout pages. Instead of seeing an increase in conversions, as would be expected, sales actually dropped after installing HTTPS. A brief investigation showed the culprit to be error messages coming from a single browser – Internet Explorer 8. FIxing the problem became an adventure. What is an HTTPS Error? HTTPS is a secure way for browsers to communicate directly with servers using encryption. Without going into the technical details (which I am not an expert on) HTTPS causes your browser’s address bar to turn green or blue on sites like PayPal and SEOmoz’s checkout pages. In Microsoft’s IE8, the overly scary security warning pops up if it detects any HTTPS errors – meaning that some part of the page has been called from a non-secure source.

My Fantasy Baseball Addiction Parallels Why I Love SEO

Two years ago a friend introduced me to fantasy baseball (rotisserie style of course), and needless to say, I've been hooked ever since. As I logged in last night to check my auto-drafted selections (and my wife exasperatingly asks why I am on the computer for the 14th hour in a row), I started to think about what makes this game so much fun to me and it occurred to me that 'Yes', there are a lot of similarities between the game of fantasy baseball and working in SEO. Here are some of the correlations (and please tell me if I am way off base here – pun intended): dnd drow names It's All About Being At The Top As with any fantasy sports game, the goal is to finish in first place, and in the fantasy season you see your position/ranking (anywhere from first to last), day in and day out for nearly 180 days! Each day is another scoring opportunity and you need to figure out what the best strategies are to win, to place at the top of the list, when early October comes around. In most leagues, it's a long-term process where you pick and choose players to compliment your team's overall strengths and weaknesses and make adjustments as needed. You should be identifying what the teams ahead of you and immediately behind you are doing, so that you can take advantage of their weaknesses, understand their strengths and outperform them in the end. From the SEO perspective, while I practice getting a portfolio of good keywords for a client, designed to drive traffic, quality visits and leads, there is almost nothing as satisfying as doing that with top keyword rankings. It's part of the challenge and satisfaction that I get from working in search engine optimization. However, we know that it does not happen immediately and I am always talking to the client about creating long-term strategies for solid SEO results. Which in turn requires you to look at... Statistics and More Statistics I don't think there is another industry like Major League Baseball that has more freely available, unbiased statistics, which are used at all levels of the game, both fantasy and reality (See Moneyball - the data analyst's dream). There are 162 games with at least 27 at-bats per game/per team (a minimum of 4,374 at bats per team in a season), mixed with on-base percentages, strikeout to walks, hits with runners first and third with two outs and a left-hand pitcher, in his first year, etc etc (you get the picture ;-)). The reality is that statistics help the fantasy baseball player understand who really is performing, who is underperforming and who is hurting or helping your team. Did that batter strike out four times last night? Statistics help uncover a pattern in performance, meaning: is 4 strikeouts a typical evening, or was he facing a top notch pitcher who had his number?