E174: Adam Chronister

Focus on AI Adoption for Content Improvement and Levelling the Playing Field in eCommerce

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eCom@One Listen on Spotify

Podcast Overview

Two men meet in a bar…sounds like the start of a terrible joke right?

Well, this is exactly how Richard met Adam. All the way in Chiang Mai, in an Irish bar.

After sinking a few beers and bonding over a strong interest in AI, they agreed to sit down and talk on our eCommerce podcast to share their biggest and most actionable tactics from this global SEO conference. 

It’s time to take AI seriously. Adam simplifies this topic to help you leave with actionable takeaways to cut out the boring and repetitive tasks that nobody wants to do. 

Listen now!

eCom@One Presents:

Adam Chronister

In this episode, Richard is joined by Adam Chronister, Chief Executive Officer of Enleaf. They are a successful agency that focuses on digital marketing, website design, and eCommerce. Their goal is to help emerging businesses strengthen their online presence through innovative and fast-paced marketing strategies. 

After meeting at an Irish Bar in Chiang Mai during the world’s biggest SEO conference, Richard and Adam pledged to have a chat about all things AI and that’s what they’ve done. Listen as they share their insights from this conference.

They delve into the significant changes in SEO, the impact of AI technologies in eCommerce, and the importance of staying ahead in the industry. Adam offers advice on self-education, key industry trends, and the upcoming SEO conferences and events. 

Adam explores the role of AI in content creation, technical SEO challenges, and the tools they use to tackle them. 

Join Richard and Adam as they navigate the ever-evolving world of eCommerce and digital marketing, providing valuable insights for businesses aiming to thrive in the online marketplace.

Topics Covered

00:15 – Adam’s journey in agency world 

05:07 – SEO challenges and competitive niches – how to aim for page 1 ranking

07:18 –  Using AI to remove the repetitive and time-consuming tasks in eCommerce. Use customised and optimised templated prompts 

10:55 – Use tools for better results in search engine optimisation by building in-depth topical authority maps for keywords

17:56 – Why Adam was inspired to write an ebook

20:34 – Using videos for eCommerce, suggesting that some videos can be made without needing a Videographer or Producer

25:34 – Shopify control, custom scripting for load time optimisation, WordPress server-side percentage, website structure impact on crawling

28:55 – Focus on AI adoption for content improvement and levelling the playing field in PPC

30:09 – Google prioritises AI-generated content for being “helpful,” but struggles to index sites accurately, causing challenges for SEO professionals

32:45 – Everyone can create more content using multimedia. Google maintains control over page rank and other aspects despite the increase in content. Focus on high-quality backlinks and increasing content without additional cost.

36:13 – Stay informed, analyse competition and self-educate.

39:14 – Favourite book: The Law of Success in 16 lessons

Richard Hill [00:00:04]:
Hi. Welcome to another episode of eCom@One. Today's guest, Adam Chronister. Now myself and Adam met. You won't believe it. It sounds like a joke, but we met in a Irish bar in the middle of Ho Chi Minh Hanoi, at Saigon, about 10 months ago, and we it was pretty clear that we have a similar business in that. And we both run SEO, digital marketing agencies. And we had very many conversations over those, over that week.

Richard Hill [00:00:34]:
And I've not seen Adam since, it's great to have you on the show. How are you doing? Doing well. Yourself? Yeah. Really good. Thank you. Really good. Really good. Well, as I mentioned on the intro, myself and Adam met, about 10 months ago, but I think we actually first met in an Irish bar in Ho Chi Minh.

Richard Hill [00:00:51]:
Right. Yep. Which sounds and we just

Adam Chronister [00:00:54]:
had some Yeah. Good staffers there.

Richard Hill [00:00:57]:
Yeah. Yeah. So, but, obviously, at a conference, we talk about conferences a lot on the on the podcast, the different conferences that I go to and we recommend here at eCom One. So I knew when when we met, I've gotta get you on the podcast. So thank you so much for working with Adam. I think it'd be good to kick off. Introduce yourself to our listeners and how you

Adam Chronister [00:01:16]:
guys the world of ecommerce and agency life? Yeah. Absolutely. Yeah. So as mentioned, my name's Adam Chronister. I run a digital marketing agency, based in the West Coast of the United States, heavy focus on, digital marketing and website design. I think we first talked a lot, in Ho Chi Minh around eCommerce because I know that's kind of your four k, and we do a pretty good share of that ourselves. I would say about, probably more than 50% of our business is in eCommerce, heavy focus on, Shopify, WordPress with WooCommerce, and, and then everything, around SEO, search engine optimization, and and Google advertising, to pair those things. So so, yeah, we've been in business since around 2009, and, yeah, really just enjoy helping businesses kind of, understand, strategize, and unpack, different opportunities for growth.

Adam Chronister [00:02:11]:
So Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:02:13]:
It sounds like a very familiar sort of story because that's is that 2009 is when we set up our agency. So it's yeah. It's uncanny. Yeah. It is 2009. Yeah. So I think it'll be 15 years in 15 years in November for us it will be. So we're, Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:02:27]:
Obviously, because by quite a bit Doesn't it? Just when you say it out loud, it's like, wow. Right. Obviously, 5th 15 years in this space. You know, I talked about, you know, that that first website back in the day where, you know, you build a site. It would take you maybe weeks to build a site at maybe half an hour to rank on page 1 of Google, whereas now it's the other way around. Yeah. Yep. I always,

Adam Chronister [00:02:49]:
I always tell people I, uh-uh, I'm a glutton for punishment because there was a period, where all my friends, everybody had SEO companies. And then there was 1 week, I forget if it was the panda update. I forget which update, but the next week, all my friends stopped doing SEO, and I was Still doing it. Right? And here I am all these years later. Like, I don't know if I just don't know when to when to call good good or if I I'm a glutton for punishment. But, No. It's it's been good. I've I've enjoyed the journey, challenges and all.

Adam Chronister [00:03:21]:
Right? So So what would you

Richard Hill [00:03:22]:
say has been the most of impactful change you've seen then. I mean, you know, you talk about Google updates there. Is is that maybe obviously some major, the leveling done in in quite a lot of the the updates. Would you say those updates are probably some of the biggest and most impactful things you've seen?

Adam Chronister [00:03:39]:
Yeah. Just Through the years, like you mentioned, like, the there used to be a time where SEO was quote, unquote easy. Right? Like, you literally just, you know, stuffed Stuffed your way to the top with eCommerce. Those days have come and gone. Yeah. And and so so yeah. Like, I know I was just on another, a podcast here recently, and we were talking about just the last couple months, the sheer amount of Google algorithm updates. It's I think I've seen more updates in the last 6 months than I've seen in the last 6 years from Google.

Adam Chronister [00:04:11]:
So lots of volatility there, and then, of course, there's the whole realm of AI. Right? So, you know, if if you don't like change, you probably shouldn't be in the web development and digital marketing industry because, because it seems like we have nothing but change. Right? So I Yeah. Unfortunately for us, we we love it. We embrace it. You know, we have a lot of fun learning new strategies and technologies, but there are there are times where I'm like, okay, Google. Can you just give us a month and a half Yeah. From figuring out what's what's changing now? So Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:04:49]:
Yeah. It'd be nice, wouldn't it, if it just gave us a month or so at the moment without anything major. Yeah. But I guess I

Adam Chronister [00:04:54]:
think last month, yeah, last month, they had a little bit of a reprieve, where they didn't have any core algorithm update, it was like, I have to catch my breath before, you know, the next next on spot. So yeah, keeps us on

Richard Hill [00:05:07]:
our toes, doesn't it? I think, I guess that's why, you know, we're both 5th coming out to 15 years each, if you like. Some it's got rid of, quite a few, other agencies, I guess, but, yeah, I'll cope with it. You know, I guess that that sort of brings us on to putting the keyword to the title tag and a few bits and bobs on page. My gosh. Next thing you know, you wake up and you'd be page 1. Obviously, it's not that simple anymore, which is good. You know, it's good for those that do it well, obviously, it can make it quite challenging, in in very competitive niches, you know, which, obviously, the sort of work I think we both like, you know, sort of the harder the better, I I say, you know, to our team. Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:05:52]:
It's all Yeah. That, you know, a lot of agencies might shy away from. You talked about sort of AI there, you know, in terms of an emerging trend. What would you say you should how you know, our list is eCom store marketeers, owners. How much sort of should they be taking note of AI at the moment?

Adam Chronister [00:06:14]:
I mean, I think, honestly, everybody needs to be taking note of AI even if they're not necessarily entrepreneurs or run eCommerce store. But most definitely, if you have a if you have a brand, especially an ecommerce brand, I think it would behoove you to to keep up to date with what's happening. Yeah. Because chances are if you're not utilizing some aspect of AI in your business, be it for supple supplication of content or, short shortcutting some of your processes, I can pretty much guarantee that there's probably some of your competitors that are using this to their advantage. So Yeah. That you know, that's kind of my, re reader digest answer to that. Yeah. So that's the short version.

Adam Chronister [00:06:59]:
That's the sort

Richard Hill [00:06:59]:
of, you know, advocacy of you know? And if you're not, you're probably getting left behind, especially at eCom because you've got, you know, Dow, there's 1,000, if not tens of thousands of SKUs. You know, just just a just a SKU count alone and what's required content wise for those. Yeah. Yeah, of course, you can, you know, you can improve content on those.

Adam Chronister [00:07:18]:
It kinda removes the excuses for a lot of things because I I know, especially if you have an ecommerce brand, I've seen a lot of eCommerce brands where they've really just they'll you know, they have, like, repetitive content across their products. Right? Or, you know, the same descriptions or similar descriptions and, that, you know, that makes sense having that restraint. If you have thousands of Products, you know, it's all time consuming to go in and customize each product, let alone try to optimize it for a keyword and then write My meta titles and descriptions, and don't even get me started with schema. But now, with AI, you could literally, like, go through and create a little templated prompt and say, write a custom product description for product x, which is priced y. So I think in some cases, it allows, business owners and practitioners and even digital marketers to make better use of things that otherwise would get left behind just because of the sheer time it takes. To give you an example, I one of the things that, that we have built, amongst the many tools that we're looking on is, like, a long form content creation tool. But this last weekend inspired by a talk I saw, from a conference I was at recently, I I expanded that, blog post generator to create, ebooks. Right? So within a matter of, like, 3 minutes, was able to create a 33,000 word, ebook on how to start a vacation rental company.

Adam Chronister [00:08:50]:
Right? Because that's something I do on the side. And so, like, you know, and I was just I would my mind was kinda blown. Like, I knew that this was a possibility, and I had all the frameworks. I just didn't sit down to do it, but it just was like, wow. Like, I've always wanted to quote, unquote write a book, but, like, really, I don't really wanna do the work. I just want that accolades. Right? I just wanna say I did it or, hey. You know, use it here.

Adam Chronister [00:09:15]:
Yeah. Use it for social proof. Well, now I can, and it you know, but still is just This kinda blows my mind, like, man, the things that you would never do before because the barrier entry were were too difficult now is is being, simplified significantly. Right? So Yeah. That's great. Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:09:33]:
How many people wanna sit there really and writable, But then Right. But then the reality is very nice.

Adam Chronister [00:09:38]:
People have ghostwriters as well. Mate, you know, ghostwriters is AI. Right? So Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:09:43]:
So eCom wise then so if we were gonna if we were gonna say give our listeners maybe 2 specific things, you know, in that AI, talking about content. You know, it doesn't have to be content, but, you know Right. I'll leave it with you, Adam. 2 specific things that our listeners could potentially go and do and leverage so whether that's ChatGPT or or whatever you're suggesting, what would they be for an eCom store, using AI?

Adam Chronister [00:10:09]:
Yeah. Well, not to to hold too fast to this previous point, but number 1, just to reiterate is, I would definitely utilize AI to write better descriptions for your products. Right? So we already kinda touched on that. I won't belabor that, but one of the biggest things I see missed with ecommerce stores is there's not enough time, in-depth put into the product descriptions, or even category pages. Right? We see a lot of category pages with 1 or 2 sentences, maybe nose no content at all, just product listings. Yeah. So the more you can really strategize your category pages and your product pages around a particular keyword in theme. Right? So that goes back to your original keyword research, which I'll expand in a moment.

Adam Chronister [00:10:55]:
But the better you can do that, the better you're gonna be. Right? And so use those tools to your advantage. But before that, like, I think and this is kind of, you know, what we do a lot in the realm of search engine optimization is we work with businesses to build, you know, really in-depth topical, authority based keyword research. And what I mean by that is, basically, it's it's a hierarchy of topics that support Yeah. You know, more competitive topics. Right? So, for instance, we're working with a a big spice brand right now, and so we built a topical authority map focusing on their their primary word, which is spices. Right? And then we break it out into more long tail words like, you know, meat seasoning. Right? And then and then you have Yeah.

Adam Chronister [00:11:42]:
And then it just kinda trickles down from there. Right? So having that strategy in hand at at first is really important. That's where you kinda can make or break. And then using these tools to your advantage, is also helpful. So

Richard Hill [00:11:56]:
yeah. Yeah. Because like Topical Authority, Topical Maps is sort of the well, oh, that was probably the one of the buzzwords last year, mate, and this year still. Oh, yeah. And, yeah. Obviously, after our trip our trip to, Saigon last year, it was just some Right. Fantastic presentations on that. Obviously, it's quite it can be, and it is a very in-depth process if done manually, you know, building a building a topical map.

Richard Hill [00:12:19]:
Have you got any particular tools that you would recommend to help lever you know, leveraging AI? We're talking about GBT. What were we talking

Adam Chronister [00:12:27]:
Yeah. So what we do and we have we have a, our own kind of proprietary custom keyword research that we're utilizing for, building, AI generated topical authority, yep, maps. But outside of that, like, one of my favorite tools, is a a tool called Chat gbt for Sheets and Docs. Yeah. Basically, what this does is it allows you to pull in, Chat TBT into Sheets into Google Sheets. And now that unlocks a lot of different, really cool capabilities. So now instead of having just 1 single prompt where you have to run prompt after prompt after prompt. Well, now you can start to, do what I call stack, prompt stacking, where I have multiple prompts that are layered inside of fields, you can then refer those to, other fields or tabs.

Adam Chronister [00:13:18]:
So for instance, we have a template it becomes our baseline where we typically will set up any piece of content we're writing, whether it's a a blog post or that ebook for instance. We we preset it up with 3 kinda core areas. 1 is the, person of pronouns. So first, 2nd or 3rd person because that's gonna change how the content comes out. Next is the persona. Right? So for working with a brand, the persona is gonna be the brand. You know, an ecommerce brand, with 10 years of experience in, let's say, dental, dental products. Right? That could be your persona.

Adam Chronister [00:13:54]:
So person of pronouns, persona, and then your tone. Right? Right? So, when I was creating this ebook, did a little bit of research. I'm like, what tone should, should an ebook be in? Well, the tone that was recommended is authoritative. Right? Now a blog post might be more of a helpful tone. But anyway, that's a really cool tool I like. I the way I describe it is, it kinda takes a AI or chat or, Chat GBT off the rails, so to speak. So Yeah. So check out Google's Shoot.

Adam Chronister [00:14:27]:
For sheets and docs. Docs. Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:14:30]:
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Richard Hill [00:15:23]:
Let's head straight back to the episode. Brilliant. So we're sort of looking at, topical authority, topical maps using sheets and using, LGBT income conjunction with sheets and then also using a similar stack to do product descriptions because that's just black. Right? Just now when you've got 10,000 SKUs, everyone just like, oh, can't can't be bothered to change those, or we're not gonna invest the 1,000 of hours this manly gonna take. Obviously, now Yeah. You know? So those are sort of had that 1st mover advantage and crack on and use an element of AI to change, you know, whether it's 20% of your top SKUs, we're gonna have a big advantage, aren't we? Yeah, so that's great. So I know you've just come back from, I believe, from my I think I've got I saw I saw you were speaking at traffic conversion. Was it that a couple of weeks ago? Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:16:10]:

Adam Chronister [00:16:10]:
That was here just last week. So

Richard Hill [00:16:12]:
Yeah. So how how was that? Was that how I've never been. When was that expo?

Adam Chronister [00:16:17]:
Yeah. It was my first time, attending that as well, and Yeah. The opportunity to speak, which was great. Yeah. No. It was a lot of fun. I really enjoyed the event. It was different than most of the events I go to.

Adam Chronister [00:16:29]:
I end up going to a lot of, like, very technical SEO events. In there Yeah. Obviously was a share of that there. But Yeah. I think with traffic and conversions, it's a lot more broad. Right? So there are people talking different disciplines from Social media marketing to email marketing, and, no. It was great. I the I think the thing I liked about it, You know, mostly was a lot of the networking.

Adam Chronister [00:16:54]:
There's kind of 2 core communities I'm a part of. There's the kind of the underground, affiliate slash black hat SEO industry? Yeah. Right? And then there's, there's another group which is more like agency, like, growth path. And so I got to see people from kind of those 2 pockets of communities I'm involved with, but at the same conference. So it was it was Yes. It's a big

Richard Hill [00:17:18]:
conference, isn't it? Like, is it 4,000

Adam Chronister [00:17:21]:
I think 4 to 5000 people roughly. Yeah. Which was I was surprised because I was, you know, a couple people had been there, previously said, yeah. It's much smaller this year. I was like, oh, wow. Well, this is one of the bigger conferences I've been to. So if this is small That's big. You know, in that click

Richard Hill [00:17:36]:
is the bigger, but I think ClickFunnels was maybe 2,000 500, maybe 4, 5 years ago when I went to that, that was huge. So that was pretty massive. Yeah. Yeah. So what I'm alluding to is, you know, I'm I'm wondering if you've got any sort of, you know, a couple of sort of emerging ideas that percolated from that conference, you know, that you're that

Adam Chronister [00:17:56]:
you've Yeah. I think that the biggest thing so one of the keynotes was, a guy named Roland Frasier, and Yeah. He had he had some really interesting implementations. In fact, it it was his talk that inspired me to go ahead and adapt some of our processes for that ebook. I never really had a good reason to create an ebook per se. I knew I could. Like, all the pieces were there. I'm just like, well, I don't have a good reason.

Adam Chronister [00:18:21]:
But the way that he's using it is for social proof and lead gen. Right? So he finds the industry that he wants to go after. He creates an ebook, Puts it on Amazon, not with the goal of necessarily selling it, but with the goal of sending people a coupon code or sending them to his book, on a particular industry just to say, look. I wrote the book on it, so you should work with us. I thought that was

Richard Hill [00:18:44]:
a really smart idea. Yeah, he's using your idea that we that we spoke about 15 minutes ago, Craig, using AI to create the ebook in the topic that you wanna get known for. Yep. Exactly.

Adam Chronister [00:18:56]:
Yeah. Yeah. So that was that was cool. That was a, like, a little bit of inspiration for me. Also, like, he was presenting on a tool called HeyGen, which again, I've known as as existed. I just haven't really dabbled with it because I never really had a good acclimation. Basically, it allows you to create a virtual avatar. Right? So I can record 2 minutes of myself talking just like I am here, and it will create a virtual avatar.

Adam Chronister [00:19:21]:
So now I can I can actually literally hire a VA to make videos of me speaking? And the way that I wanna use that is start doing outreach on LinkedIn and be like, Hey, prospect. This is Adam with Enleif. I'd wanna I'd love to jump on a call. As far as they know, they're talking to me, but literally my VA created that virtual Wow.

Richard Hill [00:19:40]:
Wow. That is cool, man. That is so cool. So Yeah. Oh, wow. If you didn't if you didn't get that, guys, so you you're you're you do like a, what, 2, 3, 4 minute video. So it knows your nuances and your your tones, your accents Exactly. So and so on.

Richard Hill [00:19:55]:
And then you save that, then go ahead and just type in anything you want, and it'll create a video of you doing it again.

Adam Chronister [00:20:00]:
Yep. That's so cool.

Richard Hill [00:20:01]:
Yeah. I've never heard of that, Adam. That's absolutely brilliant.

Adam Chronister [00:20:05]:
Yeah. It's Yeah. It's a tool called HeyGen. So we're playing with that now and figuring out how we can use that for everything from, lead gen to, you know, maybe even reporting. Right? Now I can I can do a preemptive report and have my team put it out like, hey, mister client? This is what we're seeing this month. Here's a quick recap. Happy to jump on the phone to expand more Yes. Than it comes from my voice.

Adam Chronister [00:20:27]:
Right? So Yeah. It's both it's both fascinating and exciting and spooky all at the same time. So Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:20:34]:
There's so many so many things you could use that for, like, for an eCom store. Oh, yeah. All that sort of app all that about us videos about about different products. You know, if you wanna create a you know, it's very laborious and very you know, we had a client in 2 weeks ago and we're talking you know, we've got a video videographer and a producer in the business, and the idea is he's gonna go there and produce a load of videos for them, but, obviously Right. That might not be necessary in some instances where they can just, you know, talk about a product, not have it in show where they could just talk about a product just by typing it into a box and then the video gets created.

Adam Chronister [00:21:07]:
Yeah. Yeah. Well, in in, like, too, like, I like, I'm really good with stuff like this, life interaction, but, recently I did a course, and I don't know how some people are, but I get really, like, self conscious, like and then I'm like, oh, I'm gonna rerecord that. Right? So I'm even thinking of, like, maybe I could start using this for, Like the interlude in a course. Right? Where you're doing the setup? Yep. Now I don't have to record it, and then I just literally tip it out, you know.

Richard Hill [00:21:34]:
And Yeah.

Adam Chronister [00:21:35]:
So There's there's a lot of really cool things coming down the pike, but, yeah, but, yeah, that's that's those are 2 of the the newest things that we're playing with.

Richard Hill [00:21:43]:
Yeah, they're great. I'm gonna have to I'm gonna be straight on the, Hey, Jed, because there's another there's another tool we've started to look at called. I think it's called Hayreach. I think it's Hayreach. Okay. And that's, that's for LinkedIn, reach outreach as well, hopefully, Gem, for agencies as well. Yeah. So it's interesting if it's from the same company possibly, but with it being called Hey.

Richard Hill [00:22:04]:
But anyway, let's, let's, go. So, obviously, great conference. You know, we talk about eCommerce a lot, and then, you know, I'm always encouraging our listeners to get out there to their industry in their industry, go and spend a day, a week, know, and if you Oh, yeah. I spent so Yeah. And where where was the traffic and conversion summit? It was in Las, Las Vegas. Yeah. I saw. Sorry.

Richard Hill [00:22:26]:
Yeah. Anybody listening? Then you're you're you're head you're heading up the marketing for your eCom store. A nice cheeky week in Vegas throughout it. Listen. He's always good. So yeah. I just love these SEO conferences because they're literally everywhere, aren't they now? And it's they're just so good.

Adam Chronister [00:22:42]:
Well yeah. Especially after COVID. In fact, we're I'm gonna be speaking in, another conference here soon, in March. So towards the end of March, I'll be in Poland for anyone that wants to get adventurous. There's gonna be a podcast down there, but yeah. Yeah. Since COVID, there's, Ian, it seems like there's a conference, an SEO conference every single week. Like, just Yeah.

Adam Chronister [00:23:02]:
It's nuts. I can't

Richard Hill [00:23:03]:
even but It isn't. Yeah. Yeah. I'm sort of I'm gonna do Thailand again next year. I booked that as I mentioned to you before we hit record. Yeah. But, yeah, there's just too too many options now, which is good, which is good. So, yeah, get yourselves booked in, guys, you know, not just through the conferences, the the SEO ones.

Richard Hill [00:23:18]:
Obviously, your industry, this is how me and Adam met. You know, so obviously meeting people in your niche, in your industry that are doing maybe a couple of steps ahead of you or doing some cool stuff in your in your niche, you can learn from. I don't think there's anything better. I've had a bit of downtime as well, you know, while you're there. I mean, a bit of time to think about the business and, you know, some next steps and a bit of an epiphany quite often. We we're just I

Adam Chronister [00:23:41]:
I like going to those events just because they inspired me. Right? Like, especially if you feel like if you're feel like you're kinda getting bored in your business or it feels stale, Like, the best thing you can do is get out of your box and go to a conference and network other people, get ideas. And then, typically, that, you know, that gets me through the neck the next couple months of getting excited about different things. Yep. So definitely recommend that kind of stuff. It's been huge for us. Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:24:06]:
Yeah, I'm totally, totally on board with that. So back on the SEO track. So, obviously, eCom store, you got a lot of SKUs. You've got a lot of platform forms. You know, we both talk about Shopify, you know, as a we're a mainstay for a lot of, eCommerce stores and agencies as well. But when it comes to sort of prioritizing your SEO list, you know, when it comes to eCom stores, what's your sort of go to? You know, you know, I I'm pretty sure at 15 years on the on the, you know, on the cold face as it were, you look at an eCommerce store and straight away, you know, watch your sort of go to list you that you're looking at and know that if those things aren't quite right, you can really have an impact on that store. Yeah.

Adam Chronister [00:24:52]:
I think for for a lot of ecommerce, they tend to have a pretty, you know, healthy page count, like, if they have a lot of SKUs. I actually get excited. Like, you when a when a website has a ton of pages, like, that excites me. Typically, that means I have more to work with, and usually, there's a bit Yep. You know, if not done correctly means there's a bigger deficit. So next to keyword research and content, which we kinda already touched touched on, like, that that's typically the cornerstone. From there, I really like to dive deep into the technical SEO side of things, especially with a store with a lot of SKUs. I know for instance with Shopify, for instance, one of the big challenges is it's not a self hosted platform.

Adam Chronister [00:25:34]:
Right? It's it's under the control of Shopify. So we have a little less, levers to pull when it comes to, like, you know, optimizing load time. So what our team has Worked on, just this last year, we really worked and spent a lot of time creating a custom, scripting optimization process That allows us to control, you know, that footprint, you know, on for basically through scripting. Otherwise, with the WordPress site, we could do a, percentage of that optimization on the server side. Right? So really kind of figuring out each platform, and, then also, like, again, we kind of alluded the to this too. A lot of the things I see is, either the the website structure is not conducive to, you know, being crawled. Right? Maybe they have a lot of orphan pages. Their hierarchy in their their site map structure or navigational structure is, way too deep.

Adam Chronister [00:26:33]:
Right? Ideally, you wanna be able to get to any given page within 3 clicks. That's kind of best practices. And then, you know, we alluded to this earlier, like, not spending enough time adding text to category and or product pages. Those are the things that, I see a lot that, can can really start to change, the outlook for an ecommerce brand. Right? New.

Richard Hill [00:26:56]:
Yeah. No. I'm not I'm nodding along. It's like, yeah. No. Totally. I think it's the technical one that normally, I think yeah. Well, it's all those all of the above really, but that technical piece can be quite challenging, obviously, if you're on a hosted you know, online Shopify.

Richard Hill [00:27:11]:
But if you want, obviously, there's a lot you can do around, speed, crawl budget, indexation, Oh, you know, the different robots.text, sitemaps, that type of thing, which I think quite often does get missed. You know, it's quite Yeah. Probably 40% of the sites you see. Yeah. We we had a project probably about 4 months ago now, and there's a huge huge site. They've got, I think, about 180,000 skews. Oh, wow. Only a 100 a 150,000 were indexed, So it's like 30,000 Oh my.

Richard Hill [00:27:39]:
Even in

Adam Chronister [00:27:39]:
Yeah. Yeah. A lot of missed opportunity there.

Richard Hill [00:27:41]:
Yeah. So they weren't indexed, and then they had a similarly guy who were jumping over to PPC. And I think there was, like, half of their SKUs weren't in their feet. So I was thinking if you've got a big store, you know, it's a big problem, you know, when you're thinking about the trying to

Adam Chronister [00:27:54]:
get rid of it. Vexation,

Richard Hill [00:27:56]:
you know, all the time. Right. What's your sort of go to tool set when it comes to sort of technical eCommerce you Ahrefs and, Screaming Frog, Sightbulb, or Semrush, are

Adam Chronister [00:28:05]:
you what's your it's typically a combination of Screaming Frog, SEMrush, and then, of course, Google's tools, Google Search Console and Analytics. eCommerce. Those kind of are the the the the key components for our our audits and strategy. Yeah, so Yeah. Yep. Screening 5 does a lot of the heavy lifting. It's it's one of the very first tools SEO tools I I've used, and we still use it today. It's Yeah.

Adam Chronister [00:28:31]:
You know, it's not pretty, but it it does No.

Richard Hill [00:28:34]:
I know. Right? It's amazing how sort of reasonable price as well. For those that haven't used it, I think from my memory, it's like $150 or something, isn't it?

Adam Chronister [00:28:42]:
I can't remember exactly. I think I pay $150 a year. And Yeah. Yeah. You know, it it's kind of the backbone of our audit, but it it's by no means the only tool we use, but it it does a lot of the heavy lifting. So yeah.

Richard Hill [00:28:55]:
So jumping back into AI then, you know, one of one thing that's on my mind is then, okay. So, you know, or or everyone starts using it, which, you know, those that have, got a bit of common sense would have already started using it. Okay. So Yeah. Yeah. Everyone everyone's, you know, improving their content and and building out their pages and their content, their categories and their subcategories. And their SKUs have miraculously gone from you're starting to do that. So, obviously, it's, you know, it's a similar you know, we're sort of trying to level the playing field, which is more of a PPC term that we use.

Richard Hill [00:29:37]:
But, you know, what's your take on sort of what Google is there a is there any concerns there that Google may then so to decide, actually, you know, we've got a way more of a way of identifying AI sort of driven content and only or are they likely to cause, you know, site's problems further down the line when it comes to, you know, more sites having a large volume of AI creator content, you know, is should there be a concern now around sort of Google penalizing sites?

Adam Chronister [00:30:09]:
I mean, we're we're not concerned. And and that's that comes with a caveat. Like, if you look at Google, and what they say, like, their official stance, and and this is pretty early on, right, is that, they don't care if AI is created with content or by someone in the Philippines or even by, you know, an intern, just out of college, their goal is that the content is quote, unquote helpful. Right? And there's a lot of there's a lot we can unpack from that, you know, that term helpful and helpful content, which is the Yeah. The moniker that goes around. But on the flip side too, like, in the last couple years, we've had a lot of issues with being able to appropriately index sites inside of Google. Right? And and Google has, you know, essentially, from my understanding, come out and acknowledge that this is a challenge. People that are in the SEO space have known this for years.

Adam Chronister [00:31:03]:
Like, it's a it's a never ending challenge. Seems like it's not getting much better, maybe a little bit, but not much. So it's it's a known fact that Google has a hard time indexing, just the vast amount of content online. And so now you throw in the processing power required for AI and AI detection. If Google has challenges just indexing pure HTML and some JavaScript and some CSS. I don't know how in the world they're going to, Crawl, index, and parse, you know, the vast amount of AI content. So I think even if they wanted to, I don't think the amount of compute, eCom computational power is even available for them to realistically do that. And I think that's I don't think it's so much because Google wanted to say, well, We're okay with AI content.

Adam Chronister [00:31:53]:
I think they I think they had no choice. Right? The other flip side too is it you can't really, in good conscience, say, hey. We're against AI and and and and also be one of the forerunners of AI technology. While Google has been slow to, distributing that to the public, and now they're starting to catch up with the likes of, OpenAI and ChattGbt, Google has been on the forefront of AI forever. So it's it's a little bit of a a hypocritical thing to say, well, we can use AI, but you can't. So we're not worried, now as so much on Google stance or other companies, because I think AI AI is here to stay. I do see, you know, what I have heard 1 person term as AI inflation. Right? This reality that now everybody has the The barrier to entry for content creation has has gotten much lower.

Adam Chronister [00:32:45]:
Therefore, everybody has the ability to produce and create more. So that opens up a question of, okay, we have these tools, but how can we still make this content stand out? Right? And that's where the introduction of multimedia, purely just getting content that is helpful. Right? So maybe this means, you know, a quotation that's you unique from a product, a reviewer or, somebody inside the company that can give a custom piece of content that is, you know, from the business. And then there's the other aspect. This is all completely conjecture, but, my theory, at least in the short term, is with the sure, expansion of content that that is can put out there, what other level levers does Google still control? Right? If they can't control how much content is is out there, they still maintain, a form of page rank. Right? So they can they can put more or less weight and value towards things like backlinks and engagement, and even some technical SEO. So we, at the we, at least, in the In the short term are, you know, double doubling down on high quality backlink acquisition. Of course, we're trying to multiply Apply the amount of content we put out for our clients without necessarily passing on additional cost.

Adam Chronister [00:34:05]:
And then also just doing that, You know, tried and treats stuff like, you know, maintaining that a brand has, you know, a good brand awareness, that they're, they're capturing that that whole idea of EAT, expertise, authoritativeness, and guessworthiness, you know. So those are all things that we keep in mind. You know, there are shifts in how how this stuff impacts us, but there's still a lot of the core principles that if applied, I think will will, yeah,

Richard Hill [00:34:34]:
serve you well. So you're very much a, AI flag is up, Adam and then the guy the team at Enlief are very much all in, I think, is what we're saying. We were in the beginning. Yeah. We Yeah.

Adam Chronister [00:34:48]:
We I told our team. I'm like, hey. I I'm gonna flip a coin here, and it might come up on the wrong end, but I don't think I will. And so our team, has been using AI content for a long time and not, you know, not really hiding it. In fact, I was featured early on. This is I think it's about a month or 2 before Chatt gbt real was released, But I was, featured in a a Wall Street Journal article because at the time we were using another AI tool, which at that time was relatively, like, you know, I guess groundbreaking or interesting enough for the Wall Street to to ask us about it. Right?

Richard Hill [00:35:27]:
So Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Now that's what struck me when you did your presentation when we met, you know, sort of, testing a lot of different things. And obviously, you know, you sort of got a, I guess, almost like 6, 12 months jump on a lot of people or a lot of agency folk that are now thinking, oh, we really should be using AI, especially in eCommerce because obviously they don't have the share volume. So couple of final questions there, Adam. You know? Thank you for your time.

Richard Hill [00:35:51]:
So, you know, it can be and it is a little bit challenging out there for a lot of store owners. You know? What advice would you give to sort of business owners as a whole around that sort of, potentially a year of a little bit more uncertainty, but also, I would say a lot of opportunity as well. What advice would you give to those guys?

Adam Chronister [00:36:13]:
I think the the biggest advice is just to not, you know, not lose sight of what's happening in your industry, in your space. I think it's always a good idea to be looking at the competition and, you know, kind of looking under that and saying, okay, what is the competition doing? And, do we need to adjust according to what they're doing, or do we feel like we're in a good state? What is the market as a whole? Where is it going? Right? So, know, there's a lot of little things like, you know, how when's the last time you went to Google Trends and looked up, you know, your industry or business and and kind of analyze what's happening there? When's the last time you pulled your own audience and customer base and said, hey. What do you see changing in the market? Right? Yeah. When's the last time you looked at, you know, your competitors really analyze, like, well, where are they compared to us? I think those little things are, you know, important. Know, we're big proponents too of, like, self education. Right? So, like, I think as a business owner, like, you, you know, you would serve yourself by continuing to learn, especially when it feels uncomfortable or scary. I think for a lot of business owners, especially those that are not maybe in the digital marketing realm, the the AI stuff can can feel a little bit daunting. Yeah.

Adam Chronister [00:37:26]:
But I would just challenge people don't, you know, don't be afraid of change in technology because, there's only one thing certain and that's that things will change. Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:37:36]:
I think that's great because of the amount of people that are no doubt working in eCom and working maybe with an agency. And if their agency hasn't recommended so maybe some radical change in the last 12, 18 months or even 3 or 6 months. You might wanna think about, you know, having a look at your agency because Right. You know? Yeah. There's so much leverage now that you can have if you were you know, just simple. If you were paying for, you know, a monthly fee where you were getting, you know, x amount of content a year ago. Well, the reality is the output now should be a lot more.

Adam Chronister [00:38:09]:
Right. Well, yeah, I knew that. That's that's a good point too. It's like, if you are working with an agency, or even internal talent, you know, it's I'd ask them like, hey. What what's Changed in the last 12 months about your job or about your role as an agency. What is your stance on things like AI or, changes in the industry, you know, in in digital marketing, like, really understand, like, how your team members or partners, how they approach changes in technology and making sure that, you know, they're not doing the same thing they did, you know, 48 months ago, like, that they're they're adapting to the ends.

Richard Hill [00:38:46]:
Yeah. So Yep. Especially in this game. So, Adam, I like to hold this every episode with a book recommendation, do you have a book that you'd like to recommend to our listeners? Oh, man.

Adam Chronister [00:38:56]:
I have so many. It's it's Hard. I know you sent me some questions. I tried to just skim them to keep things organic, but, let me think.

Richard Hill [00:39:09]:
Did you take us with you, mate? G n g and c. Did you read them on the way on the on your travels these last few months?

Adam Chronister [00:39:14]:
One of my favorite books is, is a little bit, out there. Not out there. It's just not known. So a lot of people know about the book called, I'm blanking the name. Anyway, there's a book called, The Law of Success in, I think 16 lessons. Yeah. That's a good one. That's one that, like, I always carry around and revisit.

Adam Chronister [00:39:40]:
Outside of that, like, there there's just so many. It's hard for me to say, you know, depending on the topic. I tend to to read a lot of, like, business and personal development books, So that's kinda that's kinda my forte. Yeah. So Yeah.

Richard Hill [00:39:53]:
Well, thanks, Adam. Thanks for that. Thanks for, giving us some nuggets and, a lot for our listeners, think about for those who wanna find out more about you, more about, Enleaf, what's the best way to do that?

Adam Chronister [00:40:03]:
They can do that right through our website. It's enleaf.com. It's enleaf.com. Otherwise, you can reach me at adam@endneath.com eCom, find me across various social media platforms. I'm, I'm pretty active on Facebook and LinkedIn, somewhat on Twitter and all the other channels. So

Richard Hill [00:40:22]:
Fantastic. Right. Well, I hope I'll see you again at, a conference, not too not too distant future.

Adam Chronister [00:40:29]:
Yeah. Hopefully, we'll we'll touch base here soon.

Richard Hill [00:40:31]:
Yeah. Nice one. See you, Adam.

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