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14 Essential Ecommerce SEO Strategies

Investing in eCommerce SEO strategies is critical to the success of an online business. If you are looking to increase the visitors to your website and grow your business, then SEO is the way to go. In this post, we look at the best eCommerce SEO strategies for maximizing revenue. These strategies will not only generate more traffic, but they also make it easier for website visitors to find exactly what they want and convert into a sale. If you’ve got some of these outdated SEO tactics lurking about on your website, learn how to quickly improve them!


14 Essential Strategies for Ecommerce SEO

1.) Keyword research

Making a list of keywords is the first step in any effective SEO strategy. These are words that your target audience frequently types into Google. By creating content for these keywords, your page will show up when your audience uses Google.

It’s advised to make a page around each main keyword, and then fill that page with a bunch of other keywords in that same category. To find keywords, you can use one of the many keyword tools on the market. Ahref and Semrush are great, but you can also use Google’s auto-predict function to find what your audience is searching for.

2.) Site architecture 

This is something you should invest time in when it comes to SEO. The architecture of your site will have significant impact on how well your pages are served by Google. Optimizing your site architecture is all about making sure that content, images, videos etc are grouped logically so as not to confuse crawlers.

You should have a site map in place, as well as having the correct tags associated with pages, which will help the crawlers know what they are looking at (and if any of them need to index or crawl again).

3.) On-page SEO

Content is the cornerstone of your on-page SEO. It’s what search engines index and it’s more than just a collection of words, it needs to be structured in such a way that Google will reward.

To do this you need to make sure that headlines accurately describe content (so as not to mislead), subheads are relevant and informative enough without giving away too much detail, paragraphs are broken up into bullet points where appropriate, and there is sufficient spacing. All these techniques help create an easy read for both humans and bots alike, which will result in better rankings from the search engines.

4.) Local SEO

If you have any physical stores, you will want to implement some form of local SEO. Local results appear when someone in a local area uses Google to search for your service or product. You may have noticed this when you searched to find out when your local supermarket was closing. Local SEO tips include:

– Putting your address on your homepage and site map, so it can be found easier.

– Adding location details to pages with products or services relevant to the local area e.g., ‘Areas Served: Newcastle Upon Tyne’. You may need to use a Google My Business account for this if you don’t have one already.

– Adding location information to your images so that search engines can find them more easily e.g., ‘Kingston upon Hull’ in the filename or meta data for an image with a view of Kingston Upon Hull on it).

The consequences of not targeting your marketing locally are that you may lose out to competitors who show up higher on the search results page. The good news is that it’s relatively easy and cost-effective for businesses to make sure they’re ranking highly in local searches, as long as they follow a few simple steps.

a Sign that says local

5.) Content marketing

Content marketing is about creating and sharing quality content that will appeal to your target audience. It can be seen as a way of establishing authority in a niche or industry, but it also helps to rank for specific keywords and get found by your customers.

This content should be promoted to attract both visitors and backlinks to your website. You see, when you make great content, other websites will link to you as a source. These links will show Google how much of an authority you are, and then rank you higher for that search term.

WebCitz Blog Homepage

6.) Link building

Backlinks are links from other web pages to yours. They are seen by Google as authority signals, which is why they positively reward websites with a strong backlink profile.

There are many ways to build links, but most fall into one of two categories:

· Natural link building – posting great content and waiting for others to link to it

· Black hat link building – trying to game the system by paying for links

You can attract natural links by publishing a lot of high quality content, and then promoting it to various outlets.

You can also pay for links from reputable vendors. However, you have to be careful and do your due diligence on the type of link you’re getting for your money. It’s best to stay away from spammy links that can harm your site in the long run.

7.) Make sure all of your images are optimized

You’ll want to make sure that all of your photos, infographics, and other images are properly optimized for the web.

This means ensuring that every image has the right dimensions (if not already), adding captions, uploading them into the correct category or subdirectory, reducing file size, adding alt text, and making sure the images are legally okay for you to use.

Process of saving an image for web use

8.) Create dynamic meta descriptions

The Meta tag is a small piece of text that describes what your website is about. It’s a snippet of text which will appear in search engine results, and should be short enough for people to read it at a glance. So make sure you have an engaging description that makes someone click.

9.) Consider using 301 redirects

This is the simplest form of redirecting traffic from one URL (website address) to another URL through code implementation.

This means that if a visitor is clicking on your website URL and they enter the wrong information, then that url will be redirected to another one.

Redirect 301 /old-url.html /new-url.html

This is just one of many great ways to implement technical SEO solutions to your ecommerce site! Click on the link to learn more!

10.) Prioritize speed

Another factor when it comes to search engine rankings is speed. It’s important to deliver content as quickly as possible without any errors or delays, so both your visitors and the search engines can enjoy easy access to what you have on offer. In a world of instant gratification, no one wants to wait more than a few seconds for a web page to load – no matter how good your product is!

11.) Drive social signals

It’s important to have a social media presence and create content that will be shared. The more shares, the better your rankings will be in search engines. Shareable content should also entice people back onto your site so they can buy something or sign up for an email newsletter.

12.) Stay updated with upcoming changes

Google is always updating their ranking algorithm. As such, it’s important to stay updated and be aware of what they are changing. What worked in 2008 doesn’t always work as well today.

For example, getting backlinks from low-quality websites can actually hurt your site, rather than help it. Another recent algorithm change is the implementation of Web Core Vitals, which looks at the user experience of your website.  No longer is SEO all about keyword-stuffing and having thousands of backlinks.

13.) Create content that’s relevant

Content is king…

That’s an old saying in the world of SEO for a reason.

Some people don’t write content that pertains to their niche and it will reflect in their rankings. The content should provide value to the reader. In fact, it should add so much value that the visitor doesn’t have to exit your page and look for the answer elsewhere.

14.) Monitor your rankings

You should track how well your efforts are paying off by monitoring your ranking. For example, you can use various SEO tools, like Keyword Tracker, which tracks rankings for each individual keyword.

You can also take advantage of Google Analytics and Google Search Console, which are some of the best free tools at your disposal.

Related: 14 Ecommerce Selling tips to boost Your Ecommerce Strategy.

siren shot of a websites current rankings

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16 Advanced Strategies for Ecommerce SEO

1.) Use Google Search Console and Google Analytics

Google maintains two of the most important tools for analyzing your site: Google Search Console (formerly known as Webmaster Tools) and Google Analytics.

The latter is a great way to see who visits your website, how they got there, where they go on it, and what browser or device they’re using–all these things can be helpful in optimizing your site.

In order to view this information with greater detail and clarity, you should set up goals that will allow you to get more granular data about visitors’ behavior patterns on your site. This is done by creating custom URLs so that when someone lands on them from another link or through search engines like Bing or Yahoo!, their interactions can show up specifically under those URL parameters.

Core Web Vitals is also an indispensable tool for you to use. Basically, it’s all about your page experience. Although Google isn’t currently taking your page experience score into account, it will soon be a huge ranking factor. The main way to improve your score is to increase the speed of your site, but you’ll want to do everything you can to improve the overall user experience.

Google Analytics page

2.) Get your URL structure in order

The URL structure of your site will play a big role in the way that Google sees it and ranks it. When you create posts or pages on your site, make sure to include keywords (like “women’s shoes”) at the end of the URL like this:

example.com/blog-post-about-shoes/?p=42

Not only does this improve SEO for these keyword phrases but also helps reduce duplicate content issues by grouping them together neatly!

3.) Implement schema markup

Schema markup is a way to provide search engines with more information about the content of your site, making it easier for them to index and rank. There are many different types of markup, but the most important ones are the “product” markup and the “reviews” markup. For product pages, you should include information about where to buy it, what color(s) it comes in, how big or small it is (in inches), and so on.

Highlighted Schema Structures

4.) Use more headings

Headings help to break up the content on your page so that it is easier for visitors and search engines alike to navigate.

You should use headings as much as possible when posting articles online, especially if you like long-form content. Plus, more headings generally mean that you’ll rank for more snippets.

Headings on a blog highlighted

5.) Canonical tags

Sometimes, products on large ecommerce websites are accessible from multiple categories. In these types of situations, the same content is often available on different URLs.

To avoid search engine duplicate content, you should take the time to do some technical SEO. A canoncial tag is an HTML element that indicates which version of the website should be shown in the search results.

Proactively utilize the canonical tag on a site’s homepage to avoid duplicates, which are common in ecommerce sites.

Related: What is On-Page SEO?

6.) Optimize for featured snippets

Featured snippets are a new and valuable way to be found on Google. Research has shown that upwards of 90% of people will click on the featured snippet if it looks relevant to their search query.

To optimize for these, make sure your headings match the search query. You should then provide short paragraph answers under the headings, and even bold the most important information.  The aim is to provide an answer in a clear way that is easily scanned.

7.) Duplicate / thin content issues

Duplicate content is a common issue for ecommerce sites. When duplicate content occurs, it can be difficult to rank well in search engines because Google may penalize the site due to having so many versions of the same thing available.

Avoid this problem by making sure you have unique images and copy on your pages that differ from other websites.

Google also loves web pages that provide loads of value, which goes hand-in-hand with long form content. As such, you may want to add more content to your product pages.

Duplicate product descriptions and one of them with a big X through it

8.) Upgrade existing content with fresh content

Before you start creating more content for your website, you may want to upgrade your existing content. New content takes a long time to rank, so you can get quicker wins by concentrating on the content you’ve already written.

You can add new content to your posts or choose to completely rewrite them. This is a great way for you to refresh your old posts and give more value at the same time. Updating old content has been linked to ranking boosts, so give it a go.

Related: Are SEO Services Affordable?

9.) HTTPS/SSL

When you anticipate fully launching your ecommerce site, make sure it’s secure with a SSL certificate. Google has released a statement that they will give preferential treatment to websites using an encrypted connection in the search engine results pages (SERPs).

Url with HTTPS Highlighted

10.) Fix 404s

404s usually happen when people click on links that were never published, or if the file is missing from the server.

Since you don’t want to be penalized for this type of situation, it’s important to have an automated system in place that can find those broken link destinations (page URLs), so you know where to update them with new content.

a 404 page one on a laptop

11.) Use breadcrumb navigation

Breadcrumb navigation is a type of website structure that displays the location within a site, usually with an indentation. This will help your visitors navigate easily and improve their experience on the website.

Breadcrumbs navigation Highlighted on checkout page

12.) XML sitemap and robots.txt file

The XML sitemap is a file that lists the URLs on your website. The robots.txt tells search engine crawlers how to access and index content on your site, it’s structured like an instruction manual for bots.

13.) Don’t forget about mobile

Design for Mobile First!

It’s not enough to optimize your website for desktop devices anymore – now you need to pay attention to how it looks on smaller screens. You may want more page views, but you also have a higher bounce rate and lower conversion rates because the content is difficult to read when viewed on a phone or tablet. Make sure that images don’t shift place, buttons are big so they can be clicked with one touch, forms take up as little space as possible, and text size is readable at all times.

Some great tools to help with this are Google AMP, which allows for faster loading and better scrolling on mobile devices, WPTouch Pro, which is an app plugin that converts your site into a responsive one optimized for smaller screens, and Boomerang Mobile App Tracking, which provides real-time data about who goes where on your website as they browse from their phone.

person using a smartphone

14.) Add “content features” to your page

Calculators, Summaries, Lists, etc.

Content features are an often overlooked SEO strategy that can give you a major boost in rankings. They’re things like adding calculators, summaries, lists, and credible data. Adding these features will give a boost to the overall experience of your visitors, while also serving as great ‘link bait’.

15.) Optimize content for keyword relevance

LSI Keywords.

This is a strategy that many companies neglect, but it can have major impacts on your SEO. You should include the right LSI keywords on your page, which are words related to the main target keyword. This will tell Google how relevant your page is for that topic. As a result, you will be rewarded with higher rankings for both the main keyword and a bunch of other long-tail keywords.

16.) Optimize for voice search

Optimize for the Long, Spoken Questions!

Voice search is the future, and if you’re not optimizing for it now then you could be losing potential traffic. Voice search lets people use their voice to find a topic they are looking for by speaking into an internet-connected device, like a Google Home speaker or iPhone.  It’s good practice to think about how people word things differently when using voice search. Generally, people tend to ask longer questions when speaking on their phones.


Final Thoughts on Ecommerce SEO Strategies

So there we have it – the top eCommerce SEO strategies you need to know about. It’s important to pay attention to each one, instead of picking and choosing where to spend your resources.

Get it right, and you will be rewarded with organic leads on a consistent basis. It’s important to note that SEO is a long-term game, so commit to your strategy and don’t give up after a few weeks.

Related: 9 Types of conversion – Driven Ecommerce Marketing Strategies.

Disclaimer: WebCitz, LLC does not warrant or make any representations concerning the accuracy, likely results, or reliability of the information found on this page or on any web sites linked to from this page. This blog article was written by Timothy A in his or her personal capacity. The opinion(s) expressed in this article are the author's own and may not reflect the opinion(s) of WebCitz, LLC.