Online stores face fierce global competition because shoppers have countless buying options on the internet. To stand out, it’s more important than ever for stores to rank high on search engines by having a robust eCommerce SEO strategy in place.
Level Up Your Online Store with These 4 SEO Strategies
1. Keyword Research
Identifying keywords through research is the first step for building an eCommerce strategy for your business. Knowing what words to target gives search engines the best context for suggesting your content.
Keywords are the words and phrases people type into search engines to find what they are looking for. Creating content about keywords relevant to your product drives potential customers to your site, while focusing on irrelevant keywords attracts the wrong traffic.
Try typing the name of one of your products into Google search, and notice the autofill suggestions. These can make great long-tail keywords一search phrases with three to five words that are more specific than generic terms.
Once you’ve identified some appropriate keywords, evaluate them based on:
Search volume will indicate how often the keyword is searched by search engine users. The larger the search volume, the more potential traffic.
Relevance shows how your eCommerce store relates to the search term. The more relevant the keyword, the more likely visitors are to make a purchase.
Customers use search engines to get an answer to a problem or question. Getting a sense of user intent will help you create context for your brand and additional relevance. Ignoring user intent could lead to targeting ineffective keywords. For example, the keyword “water” may be relevant to a water bottle product, but people may also search for it when they are thirsty or looking for a nearby lake.
If a certain word, term, or phrase is oversaturated with results, note that it can be hard to break through and grab attention quickly. Consider thinking of niches that are similar but more specific in order to stand out more easily.
Using a tool like Google Keyword Planner can serve as a guide to where the best opportunities lie. If a keyword is rarely searched, irrelevant to your business, searched for reasons other than shopping, or too competitive, consider focusing on a different keyword.
The right keywords are essential to any successful SEO strategy for eCommerce websites.
2. On-Page SEO
On-Page SEO involves the content of your web pages. There are several areas you can optimize:
Title tags, or website page titles, should accurately describe the web page’s content in under 60 characters, so users can quickly judge if it’s what they are looking for. If title tags are longer than 60 characters, they won’t display fully on SERPs. Because they are the first thing users see, effective title tags are essential to your SEO strategy.
Meta descriptions are the short description below title tags in SERPs and should be roughly 150 characters. They should include the keyword near the front and be unique for each web page. Try to show benefit and value, so users feel drawn to your website.
A URL (Uniform Resource Locator) is the web address entered into a web browser to find a unique web page. URLs should be short and include keywords if possible. Long URLs with too many numbers will hurt your SEO. Keep URL extensions as concise as possible, varying them just enough to distinguish between different pages on your website.
Your website build should be simple, easy to navigate, and scalable. Every product page should be no more than three clicks away from the homepage. This way, search engines and users quickly understand the structure of your website.
The H1 Title is the heading of a web page. It should be between 20 and 70 characters to help search engines understand what the page is about. Search engines try to present relevant, matching results to user inquiries, so succinct yet informational titles will help search engines find your site.
Rich snippets are the review count, rating, price, and availability below an eCommerce search result and should be uploaded throughout your schema markup code. Rich snippets show product information without requiring users to click on the site link, so they can make a quick decision on whether to explore the product further.
Any eCommerce site benefits from a blog with informational content. Blog content should be sprinkled with keywords, especially at the top of pages. Longer content tends to rank higher due to more opportunities to discuss the relevant keyword topic.
Internal linking involves linking to other pages on your site. This will help search engines understand how you value different pages. A web page that gets more internal links will have a higher ranking on Google.
3. Link Building
Unlike internal linking, link building integrates inbound links to your site from other websites. This is also known as off-page SEO.
Though you never have full control over inbound links, you can increase the number of sites that link to yours by hosting guest posts, building relationships in your industry, or working with an eCommerce SEO agency.
4. Technical SEO
Technical SEO refers to all the technical, IT aspects of eCommerce SEO optimization. Here are some easy things you can do to improve your technical SEO:
Remove Duplicate and Low Word Count Content
While it’s important to have long-form content, it’s important to make sure it isn’t redundant or so full of keywords that it’s useless to users.
Fix Missing and Broken Links
Optimizing your customer’s experience also means making sure the paths you lead them down still end up in the right place. This sort of cliffhanger in a customer journey serves the opposite effect of keeping users engaged. They’ll literally fall off the page if your links aren’t carefully crafted and monitored.
Reduce Web Page Load Times by Compressing Images
Time and attention are of the essence in the digital world. No matter how beautiful or well-appointed your page may be, if your page takes too long to open, users will move to the next search result for answers. Don’t waste the opportunity afforded by your SEO by leaving customers confused on if your page will open.
Optimize Web Pages for Mobile
Since most online shoppers use their phone to shop, make sure your mobile experience is as thoughtfully designed as your desktop pages. Failing to do so leaves an ever-growing number of potential customers out of your eCommerce experience.
If you need help with your eCommerce SEO strategy, you can contact us today for more eCommerce SEO techniques. ULS builds these tactics into every site we craft, whether starting from scratch or optimizing existing pages. See what SEO can do for your eCommerce store today!