The Ultimate Guide to eCommerce SEO [2021 edition]
In this article, you'll learn tried and tested eCommerce SEO techniques.
Lets dive in!
Table of Contents
What is the right way to go about search engine optimization? Why is SEO important for ecommerce? Where should you invest your time, money, and efforts to improve your website’s ranking? If you are searching for the answers to these questions then you’ve landed on the right page. In this eCommerce SEO guide, we are going to discuss everything you need to know regarding SEO best practices for ecommerce sites.
Read down below to find out all about it.
Why Is SEO Important for Your eCommerce Site?
Regardless of how amazing your website is, it is pretty much useless if it’s not appearing in Google’s search results. According to stats, the top five organic results on Google search alone, account for 67.60% of all the clicks. So, if you want your ecommerce website to be a success – SEO is your best friend.
Your website needs to rank higher in the search results to derive traffic. Your ideal goal should be to rank on the first page of search results, since that’s where most of the action happens. By putting in effort and time into your SEO strategy, you can improve your website’s ranking, get more organic traffic, and increase your sales.
Since you will already be getting plenty of traffic through SEO optimization, you would not need to invest money in product advertisements. Effective optimization can help your business get found easily by the target audience as they’re actively searching for products related to your service.
Ecommerce SEO step by step guide
In this eCommerce SEO guide, we will discuss all the important aspects you need to take care of while optimizing your ecommerce store. Let’s get into it.
Step 1: Keyword research
When someone thinks of SEO optimization, the first thing that comes to mind is “keywords.”
One thing to keep in mind is that ecommerce keywords are different from the usual keywords. This is because customers use product-focused keywords when it comes to online shopping.
So, these are the ones that you are going to target. You can conduct keyword research to see which terms customers are actively searching for.
Also, try to use the keywords that are relevant to your brand, have a high to medium search volume, and are easy to rank for. It’s always better to choose transactional keywords over informational as their conversion rates are usually higher.
How do you find the right keywords?
To find the right keywords for your products, you need to think like a customer. What would you search if you were to buy a particular product? You can also ask your friends and family what their general search terms would be.
Moreover, you don’t want to ignore competitor analysis. Make a list of your competitors, visit their website, and check the keywords they are ranking for. This would help you get a better idea about what’s going on in the market and would help you improve your overall SEO strategy as well.
Keyword tools can be of great help for finding keywords. Though there are many free SEO keyword analysis tools that can be used, paid ones such as SEMRUSH and Raven Tools provide much more effective results as compared to free ones.
Also, make sure to choose keywords that are relevant to your products. This one important pointer is often ignored by ecommerce businesses.
You might also want to read: 5 Ecommerce trends you need to know for 2021
Step 2: Site Structure for Ecommerce
Other than keywords, the way you structure your website also impacts its user experience and ecommerce website ranking. There are two important rules that you should follow for the best ecommerce website structure.
Rule#1: It should be simple
Rule#2: All of your pages should be no more than three clicks from your homepage.
Websites that are over-cluttered are difficult to use. Therefore, you want to structure your site in the simplest way possible. Your customer should not have to spend too much time finding the product of their choice. Why? Because if they can’t quickly and easily find the product they are looking for – they’d switch to one of your competitors.
Ensure that your ecommerce site architecture is scalable so you don’t have to rearrange it each time you include a new product category. Also, keep your product pages as close to the homepage as possible for better page authority.
Step 3: On-page SEO for ecommerce website
Once your keyword research and website structure strategy are set, start focusing on on-page SEO. On-page SEO refers to everything that can be done on the website itself to improve its ranking. Good on-page SEO can help you increase the quality and quantity of traffic to your website, resulting in more leads and conversions.
So, how exactly does on-page SEO work? There are various factors to consider. Let’s have a look at some of the important ones
1. Choose the right URLs.
One common element that is often overlooked when it comes to website development is choosing the right URL. Here are some things to consider while choosing a URL according to SEO best practices for ecommerce sites.
- Keep it as short as possible—the ideal one is below 50-60 characters
- It shouldn’t be too complex to understand
- Use hyphens to separate words
- Use keywords from your page title in the URL
- Avoid keyword stuffing as it can make your website appear spammy
2. Include optimized content and product descriptions
The content on your website helps Google decide how the keywords are going to be ranked. If your website only has a bunch of descriptions, with some keywords and nothing more, then there won’t be enough content on your website for Google to give it a good ranking position.
To ensure there’s enough content on your website include product descriptions and information about your services. You can also include a blog related to your services. This will not only help you build a good brand reputation, but will also improve your overall SEO strategy.
3. Optimize Your Title Tags
Title tags (HTML tags) present at the top of every webpage can also be used to enhance your website’s SEO impression. This is because the title tags are mentioned prominently on the search results pages.
An SEO-friendly title tag is usually 50-60 characters long and includes relevant keywords. Poorly written, copied, and missing title tags should be avoided at all costs.
4. Optimize Your Images
The next step in our ecommerce SEO guide is image optimization. Considering how important image optimization is for ecommerce website ranking, it’s a surprise that it’s often overlooked by many businesses.
So, why exactly is it important? Because it affects the website’s page load speed.
Websites with slow loading times usually have higher bounce rates. This is because customers don’t like to wait. If your website is taking too much time, they’ll probably switch to another one.
To make sure that your website’s images don’t impact its load speed negatively, try compressing images to minimize file size. There are several free platforms online to compress images. The ideal image size is between 1 to 2 MB.
According to Anna Crowe from Search Engine Journal “The slower your sites load, the more visitors and revenue you’ll lose out on. Faster loading pages lead to a better overall website experience, hence Google’s move toward making it a mobile ranking factor.”
5. Include an effective Meta descriptions
When it comes to on-page SEO for ecommerce websites, meta descriptions can make all the difference.
A meta description is usually a paragraph that mentions the summary of a webpage and its content within 150-160 characters.
An ideal meta description contains target keywords, is concise and to-the-point. It is displayed in the SERPs underneath the title of the page and is very important in gaining user click-through from it.
Step 4: Link Building for eCommerce Sites
Link building is another important factor that is crucial to ecommerce search engine optimization. In fact, it is said to be one of the top three ranking factors for Google. Hence, this is something that should be on your priority list while optimizing your website.
1. Try to earn high-quality inbound links only
Try to only target and allow quality inbound links to your website. This is because low-quality inbound links from low-authority websites won’t help your business in any way. Since high-quality links are usually from high-domain-authority websites, they prove to be very beneficial for your website.
A low-quality inbound link can be easily detected through its appearance itself. These links tend to be stuffed with keywords filled with ads, and are written poorly. You can also use online tools such as Moz’s toolbar to check out the authority level of different domains.
According to Brian Sutter from Forbes.com, “Sadly, much of the content being published is simply not worth linking to. 75% of it is getting zero inbound links. So forget the ‘more is better’ approach to content if you want links. Go with quality instead. Your content will generate links only if it is truly exceptional—’remarkable,’ as Seth Godin would say.”
2. Identify broken links to your webpages
Broken links to your web pages can have a negative impression on your overall website. There are many online tools, such as SEMrush Backlink Audit Tool, that can help you find and reclaim broken backlinks.
3. Get links from your suppliers
One good strategy to get authoritative backlinks is to reach out to your suppliers or distributors. If you are running an online ecommerce business, get in touch with the supplier that makes lists for informing customers where to purchase products and ask them to include yours as well.
You might also want to read: Everything You Need to Know for eCommerce Success in 2021
By being committed to these best practices for ecommerce website development, you can improve your websites ranking in no time. We hope this eCommerce SEO guide helps you in understanding how optimizing for Search engines can help your business grow.
Feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions.