Sunday, 17 July 2016

Find out how to get your own Zazzle Store Guidebot

My first Zazzle Store Guidebot

Let me introduce you to Marvin. He sits behind the scenes and guides your visitors around your store on your behalf. He's active 24 hours a day working tirelessly to bring you more sales.

Botting 24/7

Here's Marvin botting for my hightonridley zazzle store. Did you notice how the suggested search terms changed for each slide? That's the key to the whole "guided" thing.

What you need for your own Guidebot

  • A set of Postcards created on Zazzle - the cue cards in the store guide Marvin works from.
 You design each one to get across the point you're making. Maybe you're talking about a particular color pallete or maybe a design style. Possibly you want them guided to your new range of scarves.

As Marvin is a bot, he needs to be told how to guide. The guidance he gives just consists of a pre-prepared set of search terms, ready filled out in the search box, so all the visitor has to do is click "go".
Where does he get those pre-prepared search terms from? Simple, you put the right ones to use in the title of the postcard when you created it on Zazzle. When that postcard comes up in the slideshow, Marvin pops the search terms from the title into the search box. Easy-peasy!

Once you've published, you just need to wait for Zazzle's indexers to get round to making the products available via their RSS feed mechanism - the one the guidebot relies on.

Btw, here's a link to one of the postcards from my first guidebot. See how the the search terms / postcard title works?

What you need for your own Guidebot part 2 

  • The link to your store guidebot
Eventually I'll build a Guidebot Maker page but until then, it's a case of messing with gobbledigook codes in a link url, as described below. Sorry 'bout that ;)

If you can't wait for the maker page, here's a quick low-down on the codes. If you do nothing else, for your first play with it, just change the qs and the storeid. Here's my store guidebot link, just change it to make yours by changing some text in it:

qs= the unique codeword powertag you used for your postcards (remember, one postcard per slide image) (if just having a play, put in any old query for your store)
rf= your ref id
st=date_created - leave alone, this is so your slides appear in the right sequence
sd=desc - leave alone, as above
storeid= mine's hightonridley
tc=nft_ss_ad1 the tracking code you want used so you can identify any arising referral commission
title=blah+blah the title you want displayed above your guidebot

Good time to mention getting the slideshow sequence you want. I created mine in reverse order so that's why those 'leave-alone's are there - so you can create yours in reverse order, too. If you choose to create the first, first, the second, second etc. (yeah, I know, it's the logical thing to do, I must have had a brain hiccup!) then just change the sd=desc to sd=asc

During testing today, I noticed things were a bit glitchy again between Google and Zazzle, not sure which. The upshot is getting the dreaded 'feed not loaded' message sometimes. When this happens, a reload of the page will often sort it.

Well, that's it for now. Do drop off a comment if you can see how it would help you and in what way you might use it. I'm happy to answer questions.

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