Fun fact: 95% of desktop users click on organic listings while searching for products.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has one of the best ROI of all eCommerce marketing campaigns. That said, organic traffic could be the best thing you could ask for if your website is new. So, if you want to grow your new eCommerce store, you can’t keep SEO out of the equation.
We have shared important tips to optimize your ecommerce website for search engines to ensure it shows on the top of the search results. For this article, we have mostly focussed on Google. However, these tips can be applied to other search engines like Bing and Yahoo as well.
Take a look.
Make sure you have connected your website to Google Search Console. It is a free tool by Google that lets you interact with the search engine. You can check various aspects of your website in the Search Console like:
Most importantly, Google keeps notifying you of your website’s issues through the search console. Constantly resolving these issues means quick indexing of your posts and pages.
Google has over 200+ factors to determine which web pages to rank on the first page. One of the strongest of such signals is believed to be the page load speed.
Ideally, your website should load anywhere between 1-2.5 seconds. Any delay of more than 3 seconds and your rankings may drop significantly. For this, you may want to ensure that you’re properly compressing those big images (greater than 500kb).
Many images used in product descriptions are easily over a couple of megabytes in size which is your website’s biggest enemy.
Thanks to the Google Mobilegeddon update (2015), ecommerce stores optimized for mobiles do better than those only optimized for desktops. For starters, you can install Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMPs) on your website to increase the page load speed. You can also use HubSpot’s Website Grader tool that uses viewports to determine the mobile responsiveness of your website.
They say trust brings transactions, and we couldn’t agree more. Word of mouth plays a significant role in making buying decisions. If someone visits a product page, they will check what others are talking about it.
Moreover, search engines categorize testimonials and product reviews as new content. So, keep updating the reviews from time to time, and the chances of that page’s ranking shooting up will increase. You can also use schema optimization to strengthen your ranking chances even more.
Ecommerce websites usually have several duplicate pages created over time. For example, your developers or content team may have made similar pages for running shoes with exact or similar content. Over time, search engines may get confused about which URL to rank.
You need to fix this issue to improve your rankings. A great way to do that is by redirecting the sister URLs to the parent URL. This process is called canonicalization. Basically, you place a canonical tag on the duplicate URLs. This way, Google will understand that those are duplicate ones, and it will index & rank the main one instead.
Sure, if you want to show the duplicate ones to the user as well, you can always interlink them to your main URL. This will also improve your website’s navigation, another reason for search engines to rank that URL.
They say you’ve to follow the homeowner’s rules if you want to stay in their house. Well, the same goes for ranking your product pages on Google. Search engines can display your website’s detailed product information, including price, availability, review ratings, right from the search page.
Google and other search engines are constantly improving search results formats. Visitors are more likely to click on sites that appear in the Rich Snippets or Knowledge Graphs. This will increase clicks and ultimately bring more people to your site. Moreover, to check if your pages use Schema.org markup, you can use Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool.
A big topic, but we want to focus on two main areas: category pages and product descriptions.
Category pages should be viewed from a content perspective as individual home pages. This means that you should optimize your content links and heading tags etc.). You should aim to rank for the exact term you have worked on to bring targeted traffic. This will give you a broader sense of content and improve your chances of ranking for slightly more search queries.
Excellent product descriptions are the real deal when it comes to ranking e-commerce pages. Focus on the purpose of the product to differentiate yourself from your competitors. Why would anyone buy this product? Don’t just give the manufacturer details, but who can the product impact the user’s life.
From an SEO standpoint, try to sprinkle your primary keyword evenly in your content. Note that keyword stuffing is not something we encourage. So, be natural in your SEO activities and do not try to push anything.
Both SEO and social media work together to improve user experience and increase brand awareness. Your chances of having your products shared on social media channels will increase if you have more social media integration o your website. There are many ways to do so, one of the best is social sharing buttons.
Your site could see improved page rankings just with this small addition. You can think of it this way: if your customers and visitors share your product pages on their social media accounts, you will get exposure to new audiences and free endorsements for your products. Plus, search engines love social traffic!
It may take effort and the proper knowledge to optimize your ecommerce store for SEO, but it will be worth it in the end. Also, to maximize your efforts, we’d recommend using a great ecommerce platform like Shopify. You can hire Shopify developers if you think you might not optimize your website on Shopify yourself. A good Atlanta SEO company can also help you with your technical SEO hassles, should you feel it is too much for you.
Make sure you follow the tips mentioned above and see a spike in your website’s ranking pretty soon!
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