There is no denying that the e-commerce industry is getting more and more competitive. For one, online shopping provides convenience to customers. Second, the COVID-19 pandemic forced many businesses to pivot to e-commerce so they can stay afloat. That said, it is imperative to implement effective e-commerce SEO (Search Engine Optimization) tactics. Doing so allows you to ensure that customers will come across your online store and sell the products. Otherwise, you will miss out.
If you want to maximize your e-commerce store, here are 12 e-commerce SEO tips that you need to know:
Run an SEO Audit
Doing regular SEO audits when you start your e-commerce site allows you to analyze why your site is getting low traffic counts. You'll also know the reasons why you're getting low sales.
Website performance is vital in e-commerce. According to a survey, 79% of online shoppers who have encountered website issues can hinder them from making a repeat purchase.
So, you have to analyze every aspect of your site and its pages. Here are also some things that you need to consider when you perform an SEO audit:
- Do all pages have meta tags that are relevant and fully optimized?
- Are all your pages and content optimized for your target keywords?
- Do all your page URLs work well and follow search engine guidelines?
- Do all your images have proper ALT tags, which is ideal for most e-commerce sites?
- Are you using links properly in your content?
Conduct Keyword Research
Conducting keyword research allows you to look for trends and keywords that people look up on search engines. This ensures that you're developing the right type of content to enhance your visibility on search engine results pages (SERPs).
Here's a quick guide on how you conduct keyword research properly:
- List all vital topics that are relevant to your business.
- Look for keywords that match those topics.
- Search for related terms on search engines.
- Pick short keywords, as well as longer ones.
- Check how well your competitors rank for those specific keywords.
- Utilize a keyword planner tool to help cut down your list based on the average search per keyword.
Then, your final list of keywords will be utilized to optimize your site's pages. You can use these to come up with titles, make a copy, your images, and make them visible on search engines.
Use Long-Tail Keywords
Do you know that more than half of all searches contain at least four words?
It would help if you considered this when you're doing keyword research, as we've mentioned in the previous point.
Use long-tail keywords in your site, then place these in your product names, as well as their descriptions. Usually, long-tail keywords don't have high search volumes.
It will have less competition from other brands that are utilizing keywords for their SEO strategies.
Simplify Website Architecture
Giant search engines, like Google, often use bots to index information that is found on websites. These automated bots are known as web crawlers.
Then, the information found on these pages will then be stored on the search engine's index. Once a user looks up a term, the search engine will reference the index and pick the page that will provide the most relevant results.
However, if you have a complex site architecture, these bots wouldn't index the results correctly, and your site won't show up on the top results.
But when you simplify your site architecture, your site will be easier to read. It will appear much more trustworthy to readers as well.
Optimize Each Product Page for Focus Keywords
Most e-commerce site pages are devoted to products. So optimizing individual product pages is crucial to your overall SEO strategy.
If your product pages aren't SEO optimized, how can prospects look up your products?
Ideally, you should focus on keywords that will best describe your products. Then, try to look for similar terms that shoppers often use when searching for similar products online.
Once you've chosen a focus keyword for every product, the next step is to utilize them on particular pages. So, if you are selling cosmetic products, you will need a page for bath soaps, shampoo, and conditioner. And each product page should be optimized for a relevant keyword.
You can't be incorporating "paraben-free shampoo," for example, in a product page for conditioner.
Make it Mobile-friendly
According to a Hitwise report, about 60% of all online searches are made on a mobile device. That's why, if you don't have a mobile-friendly site, Google won't prioritize it on mobile search results.
Thus, you optimize your online store to convert as many site visitors into customers, regardless of what device they are using.
To check your site, you can use Google's mobile-friendly test to help re-assess your site from a user standpoint.
Use Internal Linking
Internal links do a lot for your site. They allow you to create your site architecture, spread link equity, and move users to your site's priority pages.
It will help if you create a robust internal linking structure. Such link structure allows you to deliver "link juice" to your pillar content. It also enables search engine bots to identify which parts of your website are more important than the other.
Optimize Your Product Image
Looking up products via the "image" function is quite popular as well. The idea here is that users can see products or items that interest them and then click on that image to be directed to the online store.
That's why it's also vital that you optimize your product images for search as well.
You can add the focus on your image through the ALT tag. The word ALT tag usually refers to a set of texts that describe a particular image online.
Using these can significantly affect whether or not your products will appear on Image Search. These are also a form of accessibility elements for individuals who are visually impaired.
Improve Your Site Speed
Another factor that affects Google SERP rankings is your site speed.
If Google detects that your site loads slower than the average website, it will penalize you for it. As a result, it can hurt your site rankings.
Produce Interactive Content
Regularly updating the content of your site is also crucial for you to rank well on search engines.
Optimizing your e-commerce site with fresh content regularly can be quite a challenge.
But by adding more interactive content to your site, you're ensuring that it is updated regularly.
Perform Quality Link Building
The most common misconception is that the more links a site has, the better are its rankings. But this isn't often the case.
Keep in mind that link quality is more important than quantity. Quality link building is vital in SEO as it affects your site credibility and traffic.
Also, the sites to which you link and receive links should have a good reputation and traffic. Let's say you linked a low-quality site or a site that Google blacklisted.
Then, you'll likely go to be penalized for these backlinks and lead to lower rankings on search engine results pages (SERPs.)
Highlight Positive Reviews From Customers
Customer reviews are included in Google's Search Quality Rater Guidelines. They use it as a source for assessing a particular web page's reputability.
Therefore, you need to allocate some space on your product page or site for customers to leave reviews. Not only does this enhance your site's content, but you're also providing your customers with helpful information. And this information could be integral in their purchase decision.
So, make sure that you highlight these positive reviews. You might also want to consider incentivizing customers who leave positive feedback about your products.
As an e-commerce business owner, your job is to ensure that your online store is generating sales 24/7. And the best way to achieve that is through e-commerce SEO. Hopefully, the tips listed above can help you achieve your business goals.