Zappos.com's Darrin Shamo on Channel Optimization During the Recession
Shoes can be a consumer tax deduction, right? OK, maybe not. But Zappos.com has other contingency plans for the endurance run through this beleaguered economy. Darrin Shamo, search engine marketing manager for the Henderson, Nev.-based company, says the shoe seller has more in store for the recession than Nancy Sinatra’s black, spike-heeled, calf-length boots. Shamo reveals that Zappos has a direct marketing strategy aimed at walking all over, then past, the woes.
Target Marketing: What direct marketing channel is Zappos optimizing most during this recession and why?
Darrin Shamo: I would say that we are focusing on all channels. But the biggest [area] of opportunity [is] currently e-mail—that being because we are just now coming into our own on the e-mail side. We’ve been sending out text e-mails for so long, because of the delivery rates. But we’re now doing a lot more on that front and seeing it take a bigger percentage of our company sales …
I would say, in addition to that, organic search and paid search are probably the biggest channels for us, in terms of growth. … As far as optimization, we’re doing quite a bit to pick up the organic side. We’re focusing on some terms that, in our own analysis, seem to drive the search process in paid search. And so we’re working to optimize those “golden corral” terms, as we call them. And to pick up the volume in the paid side. And so, [in] paid search, we’re doing quite a bit to optimize those, and we feel that’s the biggest area of opportunity on our side because we have some skews. We can target those specific skews and hand-deliver a page based on that query. So we’re seeing this as being a good opportunity to get our name out there, and also since it sits alongside everything else that we’re doing in the results pages, the complete convergence of media, videos, images, the “Google product submit,” organic side and then, of course, the paid, we feel like we get a good presence on the [search engine results pages].