STN Toy Talk – Jan 2011

STN Toy Talk – Jan 2011

January 2011          Having trouble viewing this email? Click here to read it online
Toy Talk from Specialty Toys Network
To our valued Specialty Toys Network members,Welcome to 2011! Are you making big plans for the year? We are!

Starting the year off with a bang, we’re excited to announce that we’ve created a new, improved shopping cart checkout. The new cart has two primary, very significant improvements that you and your customers will love:


1.    Guest checkout – buy without creating a user account
2.    One-page checkout – customers can complete, view and edit all checkout information on one simple page

We’re confident these changes will reduce shopping cart abandonment rates and increase the numbers of orders you receive. Special thanks to go out to a handful of members who were the early users of this new shopping cart during December. We appreciate your help and feedback on it.

Look for an email from us soon letting you know that we’ve changed your webstore over to the new cart. If you have any questions or feedback, let us know.


Online Marketing TipsIn 2010, Google changed its search engine algorithm and many websites saw a drop in their search results ranking. If your website was lacking much site original content and hadn’t been updated in a while with new messaging on your home page and new products, you probably saw the decline in rankings.

What can you do? The goal of the new algorithm, according to Google, is to reward websites that deliver useful content. In English, that means give visitors lots of helpful and/or interesting information about a topic—in your case, specialty toys.

Adding pages of useful content to your website can be done in three primary ways:

1. Add products. Each toy you add to your site adds a page.

2. Blog within your website. Your Specialty Toys Network website has the built-in capability to host a blog within your URL. Each time you add a post to your blog, you tell Google that you’re actively creating useful content. The more you blog, the more Google will come back to your URL and the report to its search engine.

3. Add pages to your website. Informational pages add value to your site. Consider adding pages about the history of your store and who your staff members are. Archive press releases and newsletters on your website, too.

What’s the best way to add useful content to your toy store website? Whatever works best for you! In an ideal world, you’ll gradually and regularly be doing all three of those things to build your website’s search engine rank.

Questions? Email If we have enough questions, we’ll do another webinar!

Are You Going to Toy Fair 2011?We’ll be there. This year, we’re not at a booth, but are scheduling meetings and walking the floor, inviting more manufacturers to provide their product details to you in our database.

Do you have specific manufacturers that you’d like us to talk to? Email us in advance or track us down at the show.

We’d also like to remind you that when you refer a friend to join Specialty Toys Network, you each get $100. We have a great offer for new members who join early in 2011. Tip off your friends and colleagues and when they become part of the network, you’ll both enjoy rewards!

Product  Updates
We are happy to welcome these manufacturers (including game makers and book publishers) as Official Partners of Specialty Toys Network. If you’d like your toy brands to include their new or updated product information in our STN Import Tool, refer them .The following Official Partners have been updated or added recently:

Toobeez International
Uncle Skunkle Toys
Toy Vault
The Happy Kid Company
Mindwalk Inc
Madame Alexander Doll Company
Strategic Space, Inc.
The Little Experience
PB & J Toy Company
Douglas Cuddle Toys
Acumen Associates
Challenge & Fun
Prince Lionheart
Playroom Entertainment
Mini Me Geology

View the complete list of partner manufacturers as of Dec 31, 2010.

Are your favorite products in our master database? If not, contact the manufacturers and ask them to become an Official Partner of Specialty Toys Network. Your requests get results you can use!


STN General Network News
We’re sad to announce that our Marketing Director, Tara Bloom, is moving on this month. The good news is she’s getting married this year. We wish her well in her new endeavors and adventures.Every cloud has a silver lining, though. Please join us in welcomingKayleigh Butters as our new sales associate and customer support representative. We hope you enjoy her sparkling telephone personality and positive energy as much as we do.

Many of you registered and attended our “Secrets of an Influential Website” webinar series that we held last year from August through October. If you missed it, or want to tune in again, you can check it out here. [Training Video Archives ] It’s filled with tips you can implement on your website now to improve online sales this year.

In this Issue
New Guest Checkout
Online Marketing Tips
Toy Fair 2011
Product Updates
General Network News
Member Links
Support Center
Training Schedule
Video Tutorials
STN Forum
Ticket Support
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Visit Our Blog
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Specialty Toys Network | McMinnville, OR 97128 | (503)434-9706 | email us

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