Working at a stellar online marketing agency like Wpromote, I have created SEO campaigns for a variety of Ecommerce brands. Throughout my work, I have discovered that there are certain best practices to keep in mind in order to optimize Ecommerce brands to the fullest. Let’s explore!
- User-Friendly Interface
A user-friendly interface is the first step to securing a sale online! If you create a website that’s easy to navigate, users will be encouraged to stay on your website longer and access more of the products that you are trying to promote. Positive product promotion increases your potential for sales. To make your website user-friendly, first and foremost, you must organize your product pages intuitively. Conduct site structure siloing to connect pages effectively and allow the most link juice to be sent from the homepage to subpages.
Organize your product pages how users would want to see them, arranging categories in order of importance. To help with this process, utilize breadcrumbs, so it’s easy to track the customer journey through the site. Provide search capability with either a search bar or filters so that users can find the products they’re looking for quickly and efficiently. Finally, utilize internal linking to connect relevant pages to one another and make the user experience smoother.
- Content Marketing Strategy
To create a successful Ecommerce website, it is important to employ an eye catching content marketing strategy. Blogs and resource centers are great forums for providing users with fresh content on a regular basis. Blogs are ideal for sharing personalized content and interesting stories that relate to your brand. If you strive to be a thought leader in your industry, implement a resource center to show off articles, infographics, and other relevant materials that your audience will love and appreciate. Whether you are posting on your blog or adding to your resource center, make sure that all of the content you produce is keyword optimized in accordance with the on-site strategy of your website.
When approaching your content marketing strategy at large, don’t be afraid to incorporate influential people outside of your company. For example, guest posts on a blog from leaders in your specified industry can help users trust your brand more. Additionally, make sure to push holiday content, when appropriate. Your content marketing strategy should shift depending on what your users are searching for throughout the year. During the holidays, the priorities of users are very different than during other times of year. Adjust your keyword strategy and content marketing accordingly!
Finally, when approaching your content marketing strategy, make sure to employ strong link building tactics. Blog posts are a great way to link your website to influential bloggers within your industry, but you need to make sure that the websites you are linking to are legitimate. If you link to sites with spammy backlink profiles, Google may penalize you. Take caution!
- Technical Diagnostics
- On-Page Optimization
On-page optimization is a crucial element of an Ecommerce website. When approaching your on-page optimization, you should incorporate keyword research and competitor research, to create a unique space within your industry. When conducting keyword research, take into consideration search volume and competition score. The Keyword Planner by Google AdWords and the Keyword Difficulty Tool by Moz can be very helpful with this process. Additionally, make sure to optimize for unique keywords on each of your pages, so you don’t create competition for search engines within your own website. When conducting competitor research, take into consideration page authority, domain authority, site structure, and other factors. Pick up on what your competitors are doing well (to emulate), and take note of their weaknesses (to avoid).
Keyword research and competitor research aside, when conducting on-page optimization for your website, it is extremely important to be conscious of duplicate content. It is tempting to use default product descriptions (especially if you offer a wide variety of products), but Google is known to punish sites that utilize duplicate content. When the same content is put on multiple pages of a website, search engines have difficulty distinguishing the individual significance of each of the pages. Therefore, your site might not get indexed in the way you originally intended.
Create unique engaging product descriptions that will capture the attention of users in the SERPs. On point product descriptions can keep Google penalties at bay and increase the odds of user engagement. It’s a win-win! Additionally, don’t forget to optimize for the images on your site, as Ecommerce sites are visually driven. Make sure that the alt text for your images is relevant and free of unnecessary text, to present a clear image of your website to search engines.
Once you are content with your on-page meta data and content, consider schema implementation to further enhance your website in the eyes of search engines. With Ecommerce brands in particular, products should be marked up with rich snippets, for reviews. Doing so will make your product stand out amongst the crowd within the SERPs.
Finally, to stay ahead of the curve, you should test the efficiency of your on-site optimization on an ongoing basis. Conducting periodic clickthrough rate analyses and A/B testing through Google Analytics can be helpful in finding areas of improvement with keyword optimization. If you are running a pay-per-click campaign, it can also be helpful to see which keywords are converting well within that platform, and adjust your SEO strategy accordingly.
- Product Reviews
77% of users buy products after reading reviews. Keeping this statistic in mind, all Ecommerce brands should try to gather product reviews from happy customers. On an SEO level, more reviews equals more content. Best of all, reviews are fresh content that can draw in new users on a regular basis. An email address is necessary for many online purchases. Following a purchase, make sure to follow up with the customer and ask for a review. Worst-case scenario, the customer will say no. Best-case scenario, the customer will provide a positive review that enhances your online profile. With Ecommerce brands, it is important to show your customers that you appreciate them. When a customer writes a positive review, if possible, send them some sort of thank you message and acknowledge their contribution. If you treat your customers with respect and gratitude, they are likely to refer you to their friends, and expand your circle of potential business.
- Mobile Optimization
Living in the digital age, it is crucial to have a mobile-friendly website, whether you are in the Ecommerce realm or not. That being said, 50% of all Ecommerce purchases take place on mobile devices. That number cannot be ignored! When approaching mobile optimization, responsive design is best, as it can work with any device (phones, tablets, etc.). When implementing mobile optimization on your site, it is important to make the transition from the desktop version of your site to the mobile version of your site seamless. You don’t want the mobile site to be missing important information that is featured on the desktop version of the site. When assessing the mobile optimization of your website, utilize Google PageSpeed Insights to diagnose any page speed errors that may exist. With the help of this tool, you can ensure that your users are getting the best experience possible. Google, Bing, and Yahoo have been known to reward mobile-friendly sites with higher rankings. Mobile optimization isn’t an option; it is a requirement.
- Social Media Activity
In the digital era, social media is key for establishing brand loyalty. When optimizing your Ecommerce website, make sure to implement social media share buttons on all important pages, such as the “Contact Us” page, blog pages, and product pages. Though it takes time, establishing a strong social media presence is paramount in becoming an industry leader. Cross promotion between social media and SEO is a great way to enhance your connection to your user base. When you post blogs and articles, make sure to share them on your social media pages. Interact with users on your social media platforms. Users want to feel loved and appreciated. Consistent social media activity signals to search engines that your brand/website is valuable.
- Local SEO (If Applicable)
If your Ecommerce brand has brick and mortar stores, you should incorporate local SEO tactics into your overall strategy. There are a few different ways to optimize your Ecommerce website for local SEO. First, make sure to state your geographic location on prominent parts of your website. When doing so, make sure that you are consistent in how you state your business information. Google will take negative notice if even a letter is off in the spelling of your street address. You want all citations to be accurate and consistent. Second, make sure to create a Google My Business profile and keep it up to date with current information.
On your profile, make sure to name all of your locations. Yext and Whitespark are helpful tools that can help you to keep track of all of your business citations. Though creating business citations is a lengthy process, Google will take notice of your hard work. The more you can make Google aware of your business, the better. Additionally, encourage your users to write reviews on your Google My Business page. Positive reviews always help to drive positive energy to your brand, but Google will take particular notice if they pop up in this location.
Many different elements go into creating an exemplary Ecommerce website. Keeping all of these tips in mind, you can start optimizing your Ecommerce website for SEO success!