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Ecommerce SEO is the most powerful yet underused way of boosting your online store traffic and revenues. With that in mind, this guide is for you if you are;

  • An SEO manager for a bigger eCommerce company and you want to show the ROI of SEO.
  • A small online business owner and you want to find proven ways to grow your business.
  • A growth marketer searching for highly effective and innovative ways to increase traffic.

Even then, learning is not limited to the above-mentioned groups. What is important here is that SEO makes it possible for online stores to have the highest ROI from any eCommerce marketing campaign.

That said, most eCommerce website owners often rely on paid ads and social media platforms. While these options can help eCommerce websites generate good revenue; they require a steady income stream and constant effort.

Using SEO can help increase your online visibility, which makes it possible for customers to find you. For a better perspective of eCommerce SEO, you must understand what it is and why it’s important.In this guide, I’ll take you through the best practices for E-commerce SEO that if applied will help get your brand to targeted customers and also rank your products on SERPs. But first…

Is Ecommerce SEO different from traditional SEO?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a marketing practice that allows you to use different strategies to boost your visibility on organic search results.

SEO is aimed at generating more sales and organic traffic for your business. When it concerns e-commerce, SEO does the same thing (boosting organic visits) but with the goals below:

  1. Drive more traffic to your online store and product pages
  2. Building organic sales without the need to spend on ads to get it
  3. Creating increased organic brand awareness from keywords/products

But, the question here remains: “Why do I need to invest my time and effort in e-commerce SEO?”

The thing is that focusing on Ecommerce SEO is crucial because ranking any store content and product pages on Google’s first page takes lots of work.

Also, realize that ranking second, third, or fourth page on Google, won’t generate you much traffic (if any). So, this means you have to grasp the best practices for E-commerce SEO.

Are you generating organic traffic but aren’t applying eCommerce SEO techniques? Then, it could mean you aren’t reaping the added benefits of e-commerce SEO. This can indicate that you are aiming way below your potential.

Why SEO for Ecommerce Websites Matters

Consider how often your online purchases begin with a Google search – this can either be for comparing prices, looking at pictures or checking out reviews. From this perspective, you’ll come to appreciate why search engines and eCommerce SEO are important.

Thus, without appearing in the SERPS, your website is losing crucial access to interested and qualified eCommerce customers. It’s one thing to have your products on the web, but are they easy to find?

That’s when eCommerce SEO comes into the picture. This is because…

It helps boost your visibility thus reach your target audience and you don’t have to pay for ads. Once you’re driving traffic to your website, be sure to delight them with intriguing copy, high-quality products, and appealing calls to action.

Therefore, SEO content for e-commerce tackles the first hurdle of acquiring new customers: boosting traffic to your online store.

And this does not just apply to small businesses – SEMrush carried out a study and found out that 37.5 percent of all online traffic was generated through searches by use of a search engine.

Given that many online shoppers use search to locate what they need, having a good eCommerce SEO strategy is crucial in boosting your brand visibility.

How to Develop an Ecommerce SEO Strategy

If your website is populated with lots of products, eCommerce SEO might feel like a huge task. Though this might take time, you can, however, speed up this process by establishing a solid strategy.

Steps to take include:

  • Prioritizing pages: Look at pages on your site that attract the most traffic then start with those. Also, if you want to drive traffic to a flagship or specific product, start by optimizing for that product.
  • Creating a workflow: SEO has many specific requirements that you should meet. For instance, choosing the right keywords, naming images correctly, adding metadata, adding alternate attributes for images, and including related keywords fall in this category.
  • Checking out the competition: Come up with an e-commerce SEO strategy that is designed to outmanoeuvre the competition. Check out your top competitors’ websites and learn more about their SEO efforts. Determine ways you can make yours better.
  • Follow through with CRO: lastly, CRO (Conversion rate optimization) should follow SEO.For detailed instruction, continue reading to learn about effective e-commerce SEO strategies.

The Best E-commerce SEO Strategies 2020

eCommerce Keyword Research 

This is a crucial step in any e-commerce SEO campaign. And getting this step wrong can lead to one of two things:

  1. You might target specific keywords that are hard to rank for. So your site won’t appear on page one.
  2. You could rank for keywords that don’t lead to sales or don’t get much traffic.

For eCommerce keyword research to be successful, it must have 4 things.

Four Must-haves for Ecommerce Keywords

Unlike regular keyword research, e-commerce SEO has some additional factors that you should consider when choosing keywords that attract organic search traffic to a brand.

I’ll show you SEO best practices for e-commerce when it comes to finding, analysing and optimizing keywords.  For now, let’s look at 4 factors you need to consider when choosing keywords for an online store.

#1 – Search Volume

The first factor you need to consider in keyword research is the search volume.

For some niches, the average high-traffic keyword attracts more than 10k searches a month for that keyword. While 1k monthly searches for other niches are a lot.

ecommerce SEO results

So, the best approach to find the best keyword search volume is selecting other high-traffic keywords to work as a benchmark.

Also, consider the other factors below before picking a keyword. Choosing a keyword with the highest search volume can be tempting, but this might, in the end, do more harm than good.

#2 – Intent

One big mistake SEO beginners tend to make is trying to target a keyword with the highest traffic volume possible.

Thus they forget that another key factor (i.e. competition) which makes ranking for it difficult. With that in mind, it won’t matter how high your online store rank or the amount of traffic you get if it isn’t converting into sales.

When optimising a page with keywords, your goal should not be to attract organic search traffic; instead, you should focus on attracting qualified traffic.

This means you need keywords that drive more visitors to your website at the right step of a sales funnel.

Your focus should be to catch the attention of searchers both at the early steps of the funnel and also visitors who are at last phase.

Increasing traffic to your e-commerce site does not equal to more sales. Rather it only increases qualified traffic which will equal to more sales. Keywords that work for different stages of a funnel and their examples include:

Examples:

Awareness Keywords: People at this stage of a sales funnel have a tendency of searching websites or blogs for content that helps explain a problem. The keywords they use include a word like – a list of. 

Interest Keywords: Since people at this stage are already looking for solutions to their problem, the tendency is to use keywords which include words like- how to.

Evaluation Keywords: When users are evaluating different products, they often do searches using keywords related to specific products, like Reviews 

Purchase Keywords: Finally, users at the end of a sales funnel are searching for the best places to buy. So, they are after a good offer, for this reason, they use keywords like- Discount.

Examples of keywords for the different stages of a sales funnel website redesign:

Awareness KeywordsInterest Keywords Evaluation Keywords Purchase Keywords
ReasonsHow toComparisonBuy now
List ofWaysPriceFree shipping
What isGuide (e.g., this article)ReviewCoupon
DefinitionTutorialProduct featuresDeal
WhyProduct category (e.g. if you sell “diet dog food for Labradors,” customers will search for that particular keyword)Cheap 
 Brand nameBest 

When you use these kinds of keywords to optimize your On-page content for the various stages of a sales funnel, you’ll attract people with the right intent to your site or products.

#3 – Relevance

To reach the right audience your focus should not just be about attracting people from the right intent. This should also be relevant to what is in your stores. Therefore, it will increase the sites conversion rate.

When choosing the relevant keywords, it’s important you think of what you are offering that matches the chosen keyword.

For example: For a company that sells sweaters, optimizing their pages for sports shoes makes no sense. This is considering what the company sells.

Thus, consider applying the same logic to your online store: Only optimize for keywords that relate to your products.

Something else I’ve found to be super useful is looking at the top 10 search results for your keyword. While this step will take time, it’s time well worth it!

If the top 10 ranked pages for organic positions are in your industry, your chances of making the first-page ranking in the rankings are increased.

#4 – Competition

I would define Keyword competition as the average influence a specific page needs to have for it to achieve a position in the top rankings for a chosen keyword.

Be sure to choose keywords that you can realistically rank. To explain this better, let’s say you’d like to rank for the keyword “sports shoes.” :

To rank for this keyword, you will have to compete against companies like Walmart, Amazon, and eBay. Realize that the big brands have some level of authority that you can’t compete against –as yet.

Therefore, it’s better to first work with a longer tail and lower competition search keywords.

How Can I Find Keywords For an Online Store?

How then, do you find the right target keywords?

To do this, tools like SEMRush or Ahrefs can do the work for you. Also, they make it easy for you to find keywords you can target with your eCommerce SEO Company. Another option would be to hire a professional agency who will do the target keyword research for SEO for your business. This way you can focus more on further building your brand.

How to Analyze and Utilize Your Competitors Best Keywords

Another simple but effective way you can find a huge number of keywords is through analyzing your competition then optimizing all their best keywords.

Doing so will give you a whole new keyword research strategy depending on what’s working for your competition right now.

Ecommerce Website Structure

Now that you have identified the right keywords you can target, the next step would be to translate this information into action. And you do this by looking at your site’s architecture.

A website’s architecture is the organization of your website. It serves to show how your web pages have been linked to each other. Also, this is important as it helps determine customers’ user experience. The architecture and content structure of your site can help you even get a featured snippet on Google. 

In general, there are two types of website structure: flat and deep. The flat structure contains many categories, which allows customers to find a product page after a few clicks. In contrast, the deep structure requires more clicks as customers navigate through several main categories and more sub-categories before they can find what they want.

ecommerce SEO scheme

Making all your pages accessible with a few clicks is huge for both search engines as well as your visitors. The easier it is for search engines to find information on a website, the better its ranking will be on SERPs (search engine results pages).

What’s more, flat structures can only mean that more pages will be connected via a homepage. Also, Link equity will be shared from the homepage by all links branching from it. It then further divides as this structure goes deeper. Therefore, webpages in the flat structure tend to have improved link equity since they are more closely connected to a homepage.

How is a website ranking determined?

A website’s ranking is determined by Search engines like Google and they allow crawlers or bots to crawl through huge numbers of websites many times a day. Then the data collected is parsed through multiple complex algorithms depending on various factors.

By understanding how these crawlers collect information on your website, you can help to positively improve its ranking.

On the whole, the search engine crawlers navigate through websites by following the different links on it. They do this to establish, how a website is structured, which pages are important and what your website is all about.

A major key factor that crawling helps establish is link equity which is also called “link juice”. Link equity is a ranking factor by search engines that describes the value and authority of links. Hence, for a website to have more link equity, the more backlinks it needs to have. For instance, a site’s homepage will, in general, have the best link equity since it contains the most backlinks.

All web pages that directly link to a page that has high link equity, such as your homepage will benefit from that. So, they end up sharing some of the equity.

That said, it’s crucial that you understand how webpages are linked to your website’s structure and also their link equity.

Organize Your Category Pages

As you strive to make your site structure a bit flatter, start by looking at the number of clicks it takes customer before they can reach your products.

For instance, if your eCommerce store structure is Products > Gender > Type of apparel (e.g. Skirts, Dresses, etc.) > Individual products. It means it takes customers 4 clicks to find the desired product. So, you can simplify the process by separating the products into female and male categories from the homepage.An example is Adidas, a brand that offers many different categories and lines for their products. And from above they have done a good job by making the structure as flat. They start by categorizing their different products by gender while allowing customers to click on many other specific sub-categories when you hover over it.

Also, they categorize by brands and types of sports, which supports the narrowing down of searches for customers searching for different things from the homepage.

Implement Internal Linking From the Start

After streamlining your e-commerce site architecture, the next thing to check is that all its pages contain internal links.

Internal links

These are links that connect together pages from the same domain and they have a few purposes. Internal links help search engines and visitors navigate through a website to locate what they need. Also, they help in sharing link equity.

One thing that makes internal links so important is for search engine bots to crawl through a website through following links. And what that means is that if a webpage doesn’t include internal or even external links, web crawlers won’t be able to find it.

So, if your webpage cannot be found via a link, but through a form or search box function only, it is basically invisible to web crawler bots. Also, it means that the pages won’t have any link equity hence they will not appear on SERPs.

Again search engine bots use internal links in determining the pages that are more valuable. Like the homepage. Those pages that have many links are considered to be more important by web crawlers. Therefore, ensure that those pages you plan to prioritize are linked to more often.

PRO TIPs

If you realize that your site uses a less-than-ideal architecture, don’t go rearranging the pages before consulting an eCommerce SEO expert.  Making use of eCommerce SEO services will help consolidate the pages, redirecting old pages to a new one and improving internal linking and not hurt your SEO.

Remember to have a “related products” section on every product page. Doing so has shown to boost the average order value and also helps add more related internal links.

On-page SEO Techniques

Now onto the next steps which are addressing your On-page SEO. On-page SEO for ecommerce is about ensuring that your chosen keywords are placed in the right places. This is a way of making sure that Google knows what a page is about.

On-page SEO for e-commerce offers unique challenges that don’t come up as you are optimizing a traditional website.

But, before you panic, I will be showing you the right way you can build a foundation through optimizing the target keywords for your store early on.

To get started, let’s go through the main areas you need to optimize as far as On-page SEO is concerned. These are:

Optimize Your Titles, Images, Meta Data, And H1s

Use your keyword search results to identify the most popular hits. That way, you’ll have a sense of the type of content your targeted audience prefers. Also, consider optimizing the page titles in the same way as the top hits.

Keep in mind that, although you are looking to rank high on SERPs, the content you put out should be appealing to potential customers!

Titles & Meta Descriptions: What Customers Click On

The next most crucial factor is a website’s Meta description since it allows visitors and search engines to get an impression of your eCommerce SEO Company. This is the short block of text which appears below your page title on any SERP.

So, it’s important to have a brief description that draws in visitors and entices your customers thus improving your CTR (click-through rate). This block of text should not exceed 160 characters and consist of at least one keyword connected to the page title.

H1 Header for On-Page Titles

Next, ensure that the page headers are done right, especially the H1.

As far as SEO is concerned, H1 alerts search engine crawlers that it’s the main page header. Also, ensure that it contains the keyword you want the page to rank for. That’s why you need to refrain from using multiple H1s on the same page. Plus try to include a long-tail keyword.

The H1 header serves as the page title which lets readers know what they will be reading about. Ensure that it is visually strong to catch your readers’ attention and give them an idea of what the page is about. It should also make them want to continue reading.

Images: Remember to Use Alt Text

Including Alt text helps search engines categorize the images correctly. Here remember to insert long-tail keywords so search engines know what your product is about.

Again, good quality images will help increase conversion rates in several ways. Images of size 1000 by 1000 pixels are ideal when customers have to zoom in to view the product details. Furthermore, high-quality images of a product from different angles make it easy for customers to visualize the product.

But, note that, bigger will not always mean better. Having too large images can only slow down the page loading times. The secret here is to have a balance between viewing an image clearly yet it’s small enough that it won’t take long to load.

Optimize Your Category and Product Descriptions

When it comes to SEO for ecommerce sites, category descriptions do not seem to get enough attention. This is because people consider categories to simply mean making your website information neat.

Categories are crucial for SEO since they actually have a high likelihood to rank high for their chosen keywords. A homepage links to different keywords and categories, like women’s and men’s clothing. In addition, Categories are more specific since they are the main page that connects to all items that are more related.

For instance, the women’s clothing category can rank higher for women clothing than your homepage will. This is since its entire downstream links are relevant to women’s clothing. So, this allows this category page to appear higher on SERPs once visitors search for women’s clothing.

This technique works particularly well in blog categories because it’s likely that a blog will have a huge variety of topics. When you don’t use categories, your blog will appear to have a wide variety of topics to the bots.

Therefore, they won’t see the blog as specialized enough. Including category descriptions in a blog also helps your readers know what they should expect and how they can learn more about a particular topic.

When preparing an article discussing how to write effective product descriptions that sell, you’ll need to explain the benefits your customers will experience rather than concentrating too much on the different qualities of a product.

For example, keeping you warm when you are outdoors in winter counts as a benefit for a winter coat. And the product quality concerns writing about it being made of 100% merino wool.

Because the product benefit is something linked to an emotional experience instead of a factual product description. Then it will resonate more with your customer which is among the benefits of ecommerce SEO for increasing conversion rates.

Internal Links

Internal linking is among the most powerful and commonly ignored SEO for ecommerce website tactics.

By building internal links, you will be able to establish your anchor text. And this helps with ranking for your chosen top keywords.

While there isn’t much space in a product description for a link, consider developing a strong internal linking tactic by use of product recommendations.

Let’s look at how the best ecommerce SEO Company does their product recommendations:

  • After looking at a winter coat, Amazon will recommend to you another product as a bundle. This not only works great by increasing the average order values, but this tactic also includes powerful internal links to the product.
  • If you continue scrolling down, you’ll see their famous section “Customers who bought this item also bought”. This section shows many product recommendations.
  • In addition to this section, if you scroll further down to the bottom of that page, Amazon will show you two more product recommendation sections:
  • The first section is called “Customers who viewed this item also viewed”, which shares a few more products associated with the one you saw earlier.
  • Finally, they will recommend that you check out the previously seen products.

So, if you would like to replicate what Amazon does, it is possible to do this with the help of several tools.

Shopify has several apps that let you include product recommendations:

  •   Personalized Recommendations
  •   Directed Edge Product Recommender

How to include Content that Converts for a Product Page

The product pages are an important part of an ecommerce store. This is because they are like a retail store sales clerk.

After investing all the time and money into ensuring your ecommerce store receives qualified traffic, you also need to ensure that the product pages contain content that converts.

To do this you need to provide the right tools as a motivating factor for your visitors which then make them want to buy from your company.

To find out more, keep reading about how you can do it.

Note: A huge problem that many online stores seem to make is copy and pasting category as well as product copy in several pages.

I do not recommend this since it creates duplicate content.

To correct this, always ensure that you create original content for every product and category page. This is besides one of the best ecommerce SEO investments you can ever make.

Show Your Value Proposition

Often visitors find a product page, once they see a product and will likely think: “Why should I get this product from this online store? “

Note that your value proposition is the answer to this question. A value proposition makes a company be noticeable from the rest. This is also what makes visitors want to buy products from you.

The challenge that Amazon represents to ecommerce stores is that a store needs to come up with a value proposition that shines. To come up with a value proposition, consider your company as well as your brand.

  • What is your company offering that no one else offers?
  • What do you do that stands out over the rest?

Be sure to include your value proposition in the product description. Ensure that it is clear about the benefits the visitors will be getting from your products.

Time for some examples:

Amazon provides lots of convenience through their product selection and a Prime program. An effective product value proposition should focus more on the lifestyle that the products can offer a customer.

Use Many High-Quality Pictures

One huge challenge that customers face when shopping online is not being able to touch, feel, and try the products they want to buy. Many people have at some point purchased a product online and after receiving it they weren’t happy with its design quality.

That’s why people have become more cautious when shopping online. To help address this, ecommerce stores must display the highest-quality pictures for customers to clearly see what they will be getting.

There are a few ecommerce store owners who sell wholesale products but only share the retailer’s photos. And these are often not of high-quality.

Not using high-quality product photos can prove to be a costly mistake. Often, successful ecommerce companies ensure to use high-quality product photos in their stores.

If you want to take high-quality product photos, you could engage the services of a professional photographer.

As far as product photography is concerned, you should think of it as an important investment, unless your product turnover is huge (and that means you’ll keep changing the product’s images after a few months.

Again, if you can’t pay for a photographer, consider investing in a DSLR and a portable lightbox for capturing high-quality images as needed.

You can also go a step further by investing in a small turntable for creating simple product videos that you can display next to your images.

Write Amazing Product Descriptions

In addition to using great product photography, creating great product descriptions help customers understand what each product is and its use.

Even though it is important, the majority of ecommerce stores tend to commit three huge mistakes when writing their product descriptions:

  1. Some focus on the product features and not their benefits
  2. Most copy/paste the manufacturer descriptions (this can get you penalised)
  3. They also fail to include key information that helps speed up buying decision

To write some amazing product descriptions, show the benefits your products offer, not its features.

Consider how customers will benefit when they use your products. Also, think of how the product can help solve their problems.

If your product has a list of features, explain the benefit from each and the benefit it will bring to your customers.

Then again, if you are selling technical products, the features should be left for the tech-savvy people should they want to read through the technical details.

A good example you can do this by showing five tabs, for example:

  • Overview – This includes the features in short bullet points, images, video, and pricing
  • Key Features – They describe each feature in detail and add supporting imagery
  • Detail – Each feature is presented in a bullet point list
  • Specifications – These are included in a table and includes things like container capacity
  • Manuals/FAQ/Support – Allows customers to download and read their manual before making a purchase. They also have details on how you can get help.

By writing compelling product descriptions, they not only help draw in customers into buying, but it also sends the right signals to Google. And this is crucial when it concerns search engine ranking for your product pages.

When you take the easier route and copy/paste a manufacturer’s description – you’ll never get any rankings in Google, not exactly what you are aiming for, right?

You also need to be cautious when it comes to your product and using poor quality images. In addition, if they don’t contain all the necessary information they need, visitors will also be hesitant to make a purchase.

Use Testimonials (or customer reviews)

Another powerful and effective way of boosting your store’s sales is showing your visitors testimonials and feedback from previous customers. This is what your past customers have to say about your products. This can help lower their doubts and fears concerning shopping with you.

This strategy works because people would like to know what other users think. This is what psychologists call “social proof,” which is a simple way that can help increase trust from buyers and your conversion rate.

Time for an example:

Let’s consider Amazon who takes this step a notch higher by sending emails to people who have in the past bought a product if someone raises a question.

This great social strategy by Amazon serves to provide fresh user-generated content while previous customers assist potential customers to make a purchase which translates into sales.

Running Technical SEO Audit for eCommerce Websites

Before doing anything else, be sure to check that your online store does not have any on-site problems.

Some of the common problems may include having a website that:

  •   Does not allow Google to crawl
  •   Has little to no content (or a huge amount of duplicated content)
  •    Has many other technical issues such as cannibalization or poor site structure

But you can ensure that your store doesn’t contain any of the above problems. Meaning you can avoid creating a poorly optimized eCommerce website by running a Technical SEO Audit.

Here are some SEO tools you can use when doing eCommerce site audits:

  1. SEMrush
  2. ScreamingFrog
  3. Site Condor
  4. Ahrefs
  5. DeepCrawl
  6. Raven Tools

How Do You Do an SEO Audit on an ecommerce site?

The most effective way to identify and improve these issues is to carry out an SEO audit for your e-commerce. A comprehensive audit will measure the most crucial of the ranking signals as a way of discovering where a site can improve.

By putting these aspects right will boost your likelihood of ranking higher in SERPs. It also can help draw in more organic traffic to your online store.

Now, let’s dive deeper into Audit SEO at the results in a bit more detail.

Run an Ecommerce SEO Audit to Check for Issues

To start this process, make sure you complete your ecommerce SEO audit. This is meant to ensure you don’t leave any gaps or miss any opportunities in your strategy.

ecommerce SEO statistics

Test for keyword cannibalization.

In this stage, you should only have one page allocated to each keyword. When you decide to optimize two site pages using the same keyword, it will be difficult for search engines to tell which page is more important.

Therefore, it does not rank either of the pages. So re-examine your content to make sure that each keyword used is only targeted for one page only.

Check for issues with duplicate content

Similar to the double use of keywords, you need to avoid the double use of the same content. Search engines often have a hard time trying to rank your content when it appears in multiple places on your site.

ahrefs

Also, this can even mean your site is penalized for it. Although duplicate content is not always done intentionally, it’s important that you test your site to ascertain that you don’t have such issues.

Test each page for on-page SEO

Also, ensure that you don’t overlook on-page SEO opportunities for the content appearing on your site.

Verify on-page SEO for all your pages to ensure that each optimization approach is complete. Position the important pages so visitors can find them in less than three clicks from the homepage.

Note that complex sitemaps with deep-linked pages can confuse search engines. This is because search engines will prefer sites with an intuitive linking structure which allows for easy access with a few clicks.

Again structure your ecommerce site to work for search engines by setting up your pages to so no important pages are accessible with more than three clicks from the homepage.

Fix any crawler errors. Check to ensure that there are no errors with the Meta tag SEO which might be causing the pages to be hard to find by search crawlers. Also, run a site scan to make sure that search crawlers can crawl and scan all the relevant pages within your site.

Get a Complete Look at Your eCommerce Site SEO Status

To have a quick Audit SEO ecommerce, consider enlisting the services of an eCommerce SEO agency. They will take a good look at the status of many SEO elements for your site by running a comprehensive SEO Audit.

The audit SEO ecommerce includes a list of information about what’s missing on your ecommerce site and the steps you can take to address errors and gaps. 

This option can be an easy, fast, and helpful way you can measure your SEO then outline real steps you can follow in improving and optimizing it.

Local SEO to Boost an Online Store Local Presence

In this guide, I have so far referred to international or national online retailers.

However, some of you own local businesses that you’d like to take online. Since your customers will be coming from your region or city, you will need to approach SEO in a different way.

If you own a brick and mortar store or you simply want to bring in more local traffic to your site, local SEO will give you a good boost.

In this segment, I’ll look at the following things:

  1. Claiming a Google profile for your Business
  2. Build local citations
  3. Link to local websites

Of importance is to note that 80% of searches done locally via mobile will convert.  The huge part of the digital world uses a mobile. Meaning you should keep this in mind when optimizing your eCommerce site.

For you to capture your local traffic, you need to ensure that your store has these three attributes:      

  • It needs to have a business name
  • have a local phone number that matches your location or city
  • It needs to have the physical street address from where your business operates

Like with any local commerce store, people should be able to find you.

That said, let’s get started!

#1.Claim Your Profile

The first step when claiming and creating a local profile with Google is called Google My Business.

  1. Once you’re on Google website, click on the “Start Now button”
  2. Then log in to your business account, thereafter you will be sent to a map-
  3. Fill in all your business information.
  4. Remember to include your business name since it needs to appear in Google results. So, double-check to ensure that you don’t make mistakes when filling out your address and phone number.

After finishing this process, Google will then publish your store in their search results making this a quick win.

Quick tip… many people like shopping from local-based businesses. Therefore, if this is your targeted customers then ensure you point them to where you are. Also, use marketing to explain to them why you’re the best.

#2. Build local citations.

Any backlinks from other local websites are referred to as Local citations. An example of local websites is press releases, magazines, news outlets, plus many other local media.

Also, claiming your free listing from your local Yellow Pages counts as a local citation. Citations are crucial for local SEO as they alert Google that your store is popular within your area.

Since backlinks by and large help SEO, backlinks from the local sites improve local SEO. And this also works well for international businesses. 

So, if you’d like your ecommerce site to rank higher in Germany search results, yet the site is hosted in Australia, then you should get more links from US sites.

But, it’s practical if you build separate websites for each country if you want your ecommerce website to rank higher for local SEO.

#3. Get Links from Local Websites

Another excellent way you can optimize your ecommerce site with local SEO is getting links from local sites. This will help your site with local ranking and also with building your domain’s overall authority.

For faster results, you could get links from local associations, news outlets, and even local blogs.

Using Content Marketing Tips to Attract Additional Organic Visitors

Content marketing is a process of building and distributing digital content online. This can be both directly or indirectly as a way of promoting a product, service or brand.

While this definition is broad, it’s important to come up with a successful content marketing tactic for an ecommerce website. For this, you need to consider taking an approach that is ecommerce-specific.

Another thing to keep in mind is that your content strategy will not be similar to that of a B2C local retailer or a B2B SaaS company with no online presence.

That being said, how can you do in terms of content marketing to attract more organic traffic?

Ecommerce Content Marketing Process

Before starting a blog or uploading your videos to YouTube, make sure you have a clear content strategy. Remember that, all the things you do need to drive conversions.

I have a simplified approach for the planning process and divided it into three easy-to-follow steps. So, be sure to follow these steps in order.

Step #1: Identify your targeted audience

While this might sound simple, it is not so. The thing is, you need to be clear about the needs of your target audience before any content marketing campaign. When this is not done, it won’t be as successful or lead to conversions.

By not knowing about your target audience, you will not know how you can reach them. Some things to know about your target audience include:

  • Gender
  • Age
  • Location
  • Habits
  • Likes
  • Dislikes

These are some of the basics you should know about, at a minimum. Make sure to identify your target market for your startup from the get-go. But keep in mind that your overall audience won’t always be the same for each campaign and strategy.

For instance, if your eCommerce business sells sports equipment, then your audience won’t just be “those who play sports.”

Therefore, you cannot customize your content for this only. This is because it’s rather broad. Male tennis players are not the same as High school softball players.

Step #2: Find out their online habits

Note that content marketing is a process of sharing out digital touchpoints online. For this reason, it’s essential that you understand who your audience is.

Also, be sure to find out where your audience lives online. Otherwise, it won’t be easy to know how or where you can share the right content. And consider the platforms that most of your audiences have access to.

Step #3: Build and Distribute Content

After you know the platforms that are the best places for you to distribute content to reach your earlier identified target audience, it is now time to start creating your content.

It would be a big mistake to start creating the content before going through these first two steps. Besides, you could be wasting your time building content that your audience won’t use or even end up seeing.

For instance, you might be spending 90 per cent of the resources for content marketing on blogging. However, your audience is only consuming content available on Instagram and YouTube. Then this is not an efficient use of these resources.

Again, the kind of content you build will also be based on who you’ll targeting depending on the stage they are in a marketing funnel.

Winning with Off-Page SEO for Ecommerce

Next, I will be looking at more specific kinds of off-page SEO techniques for ecommerce website campaigns.

Off-page SEO involves promoting your business in different ways and relying on the power and size of platforms you promote for boosting your rankings.

Remember, each of these kinds of content will apply for all the campaigns you run. Meaning that your content will keep changing depending on your target audience and the platforms you plan to distribute on.

Blogging

I recommend that you start your content marketing approach with blogging. Although this isn’t among the most popular approaches when it comes to ecommerce companies, it’s very useful for SEO.

Also, there are some ways you can use to scale lead generation by using blogging.

Since your site is an ecommerce shop, keep in mind that you’re competing against dozens, hundreds, and thousands of different brands on the web. So, you can’t assume that all your customers will directly visit your site to make a purchase.

Design the final section of your blog posts for conversion.

A blog needs to close with a CTA. This approach is simple, yet very effective.

Original photos

Shopping online presents the biggest challenge for online customers. This is because they can’t touch or feel what a brand is offering before making a purchase.

Due to this, they heavily rely on visuals to do this. So always ensure that you include tons of pictures for each product from every imaginable angle. Doing so is important for your product pages, however, you could also repurpose these photos on other channels.

A good example is taking an original photo of models wearing your products let’s say clothes then turn the image into a shoppable Instagram post.

Again, this is assuming that you’ve carried out the right research and identified this platform as the best place you can get to your target audience.

Also, use images in your blogs. Include them in your email campaigns and even share them on different social media platforms. Continue taking more original photos as you’ll be able to have another use for them.

Video content

This method helps consumers see your products prior to buying anything.

That means the more videos your customers watch about your products on offer, the higher the average order value will be.

Also, Videos can be reused across different channels. For instance your product pages, blog, social media and email campaigns.

Some of the types of videos you can create include:

  • Product demonstrations
  •  “How to” videos
  • Brand advertisements
  • Animations
  • Interviews
  • Live video broadcasts

And the list of possibilities is endless. Therefore, video content needs to be incorporated into any marketing strategies for ecommerce sites.

Make sure to include a CTA to all your buying guides to drive conversions.

Email marketing

Email marketing is not exactly an ecommerce-specific method for content marketing. However, there are some ways that your online store can leverage emails, something that other businesses cannot.

Your ecommerce website can even take this method a notch higher. This means, whenever someone purchases on your website, this gives you an opportunity to mail them drip campaigns that are related to the made order.

  1. Order confirmation
  2. A shipping notification
  3. And package delivered
  4. Plus a follow-up

Meaning you’ll have an excuse to send four emails. Also, each of these emails is relevant to a customer. Plus they provide the information they’ll want to see.

Besides these messages can help drive more conversions or serve as a way to offer discount codes off upcoming purchases. Again, it can be a good avenue to show product recommendations depending on what a customer bought.

For example, if a customer bought a surfboard, you can send them an email on a related product like a wetsuit.

Customer stories

For this method, you have several formats that you can use when telling a customer story. These are;

  • Testimonials
  • Case studies
  • Reviews

These methods can be in image format, text, blog posts or videos. In addition, they can be displayed on your homepage or even create a separate landing page where you share customer stories. Also, consider sharing your customer stories on social media.

Including interactivity to content, this strategy makes it a great way for you to give a personalized touch to your customers.

Ecommerce Content Marketing Do’s and Don’ts

For content marketing to yield an ecommerce business more ROI (Return On Investment), be sure to make these tactics your own.

Track and run tests regularly

Content marketing metrics are important because it’s not easy scaling what you are not tracking. 

To increase the success of any content marketing technique, set up your tracking using Google Analytics that lets you analyze everything starting from pageviews, time on site, bounce rate and even audience demographics.

Also, I recommend you run A/B tests with a tool like Optimizely.

Do not expect immediate results

Keep in mind that patience and time are important when it comes to content marketing.

As such, content marketing might take six to nine months of consistent investing in promotion, blogging, lead generation, and paid advertising. That’s before you see some results from your ecommerce content marketing strategy.

Be ready to spend more on better content

If you are unwilling to invest in writers, then don’t expect to have good content.

Don’t be spammy

The main purpose of an ecommerce business is to sell more. However, when it concerns content marketing, avoid going overboard. And this includes coupons, special offers, and deals within your content. 

Above all, if you can offer value and become a resource that visitors can trust, then sales will come.

Leverage Facebook Ads

Facebook ads can be an exceptionally useful platform when it concerns promoting content. It is also a great platform for connecting with the target audience.

What this means is that there are many benefits your SEO eCommerce business will get from this segmenting down to reaching your target audience. So, be sure to familiarize yourself with Facebook advertising and how you can use it to drive ROI.

Be willing to delegate

If you’re considering scaling your efforts in content marketing to boost ROI, you need to be ready to delegate tasks. Also, be willing to use tools that help boost productivity.

Some helpful ecommerce content marketing tools you can use include Buzzsumo, Canva, Google Keyword Planner, Facebook Ads, Trello and many more.

Listen to customers

Tools like Google forms, Intercom, or Facebook polls are important resources you can use. They can help you find out the kind of content your target audience wants to read on your blog.

This is much better than assuming you recognize the questions your audience have about your industry and products. Once you know what people want to read about, you can now create content that helps and interests them.

Dare to stand out

Avoid copying your competitors. So, be unique in the content to offer. If you Google a blog post idea you have and find that there are more than three blog posts that are already covering the topic. Then it’s not worth it.

But not to discourage you, you could work with the same idea provided you’re confident that your blog post will be 10x better than what already exists.

Create personas for different content marketing

Be sure to take time to find out more about your model customer. Once, that is done, organize the information into different buyer personas and even blog reader personas.

Don’t over-automate

While streamlining tasks with different tools, be careful that you don’t seem too robotic in blog posts, emails, and social media updates you share.

In the end, customers want to feel like they are transacting with a human being. Therefore, make sure you are maintaining a good amount of authenticity and personality in all your content.

Where needed, consider working with experts or getting ecommerce SEO packages that can take care of things for you and even offer you more content marketing strategy options.

Link-building Strategies to Improve Website Authority

Link building for eCommerce works like other types of link building.

That means, if you have more high-quality links with a good Moz score pointing to your online store with a suitable anchor text, thus, you will help increase your eCommerce business ranking in search engines.

Then again, what makes eCommerce link building different than, local store link building or a media website? Well, for the ecommerce business, links need to be pointing to each section of the store, and this includes the products and category pages.

But the question still remains: How can I build links for my ecommerce business? Well, let’s see how shall we?

Top SEO eCommerce Link Building Tactics

If you’re concerned about your ecommerce website authority, here are a few SEO link building tactics you can use to help.

1 — Use Guest Blogging

Guest blogging for authoritative websites can be a great way of generating quality backlinks for an ecommerce website.

Before you start your own blog, doing guest blogs can help you gain popularity in the world of blogging. The best part is, it can help you build quality backlinks for your site.

First off, ensure you have a set goal. For instance, what do you want to achieve through guest blogging? Let’s say, for instance, you’d like to drive better organic traffic to your site.

For this instance, you need to target websites that will get you more traffic. And this calls for a shortlisting for blogs that also publish their guest posts on other platforms such as social media networks.

When starting to identify relevant sites and blogs for link-building with, start by using Google search engine. Look for relevant topics that can draw in your target audience. From your search, the results that appear at the top are of the blogs you need to pitch your ideas to.

Make sure you learn more about the audience of those blogs you want to guest posting in. Afterwards, follow the given content writing regulations.

For instance, avoid stuffing keywords or appearing too promotional. Instead, aim to inform the audience and not sell them an idea.

Also, if you are not an expert, you could consider enlisting the services of professionals. Remember that once your article is published, be sure to promote it on social media and be sure to take part in the comment section.

Again, when you first start with link building, you might have to guest post several times until you’ve built a good foundation.

2 — Leverage Infographics

Visuals happen to be shared even moreover content. The thing is, most people don’t have time to read lengthy content. Today, people prefer to have a faster way to consume all the information they need. And the best way to achieve this is by offering Infographics.

You can use infographics to provide a condensed visual representation of the information you want to get out there. They can include text, graphs, and visuals to convey the message. Besides being convenient for your site visitors, this form of content is a crucial part of an effective strategy for link building.

In addition, they help websites draw in organic traffic as well as have quality backlinks, and not have to ask for them. They also help establish harmonious relationships among businesses.

You may be wondering how you can create infographics for ecommerce. Not to worry, if this isn’t your thing, you could hire professional help to handle this for you.

Ensure that the infographics you create are relevant and informative. Include research, statistics, and data to make it realistic. Given that infographics have become well-liked among SEO enthusiasts, make sure you make yours as informative and unique as possible thus making it shareable.

3 — Monitor your competitors

For you to outperform the competition, it’s important that you are aware of where they stand. Therefore, you’ll need to keep checking on their backlinks.

In doing so, you’ll be able to understand which backlinks are presently ranking high on Google. You can use this tactic to gain some insight from their efforts. Plus, it is a great way to learn from them instead of trying to decode the ranking algorithm used by Google.

So, monitor competitors who are ranking higher than you. First, start by finding out the keywords they’re using and the platforms they get their links from.

To have a better idea about sites you should regard as your benchmark, start by checking for your primary keyword.

Regardless of the brand that comes on top of your organic search results from your keyword is your competition.

Consider their backlinks when gauging their authority. Plus, find out the average number of backlinks used by that brand. Keep in mind, provided that the influence of any domain you are linking to is high, you will not have to use many links.

Identify the strategy that’s working for them. Note whether they are getting their links from other related blogs.  If yes, it indicates that the guest posting tactic works well for them.

Regardless, after you’ve identified your quality links, be sure to replicate through naturally using them in your related content. In the end, use your knowledge in your chosen link building strategy.

4 — Leverage your social media presence

When it comes to SEO and ecommerce, you need to make sure that you are leveraging the power of the best ecommerce platform for SEO. Also, use your following to help boost the general visibility of your site.

Again, a brand’s credibility comes from its image and the equity it has. Any business that’s trusted, it is likely that it is sought by other brands and this improves the likelihood of link building.

So, ensure that you are active on different social media platforms. Share updates and any news that you believe can help your targeted audience. That being said make sure that the updates you share are related to your sector. And be sure to effectively answer any queries your customers may have.

Join communities and groups to further showcase your expertise. Through the use of each of the above-mentioned methods, you’ll be able to boost your engagement rates.

Remember that your posts need to contain your site’s URL. So, by combining these two tactics, you’ll be pointing more people to your site.

And this goes a long way in boosting your visibility and even increasing your link profile.

When it comes to reaping the benefits of SEO Link building, the strategies you use can be challenging. And this is because when compared to the other methods, this task could be more burdensome.

Measuring SEO Success

Congratulations for reading this far. That was quite a long read, but before I wind up, I have one more step for you: Measuring SEO success.

Thus far, you might be wondering, “How can I tell if my SEO strategies are working?” Well SEO may not immediately show its ROI after one day of sharing ad campaigns. Rather, how it shows its working is more subtle and can take a long time.

Even then, what are some of the signs to look for?

To help track your site rankings, I recommend you do the following:

  1. Tracking search ranking using an SEO tool like Ahrefs
  2. Including an SEO dashboard within your analytics account.

While the second way is free, I recommend you do both, if possible. Let’s examine them!

1. Tracking Search Ranking Using Ahrefs

Ahrefs come with an in-built rank tracking feature that will notify you every time your rankings changes.

This feature is now enhanced to even generate more useful information, such as comparing your site progress against your competition. Plus it helps you see your general search visibility!

While this might not be completely accurate, it will give you a broad sense of whether your overall rankings are improving or decreasing.

You should be looking for an overall ranking improvement for the targeted keyword, and a small one is welcome.

Keep monitoring your rankings for any changes. But, keep in mind this can take several months before you really see the results you are aiming for.

2. Using Google Analytics for measuring engagement metrics organic traffic.

This tactic works if you want more data or a free method that shows your search ranking improvements. To get these free ecommerce SEO packages, then install the free SEO dashboard for your analytics.

Choosing this option is more for when you’re looking for the subtle signs, rather than for direct ranking improvements. Some signs are…

  1. Improvements in search traffic
  2. Which landing page the search traffic is visiting

The above piece of information will help you determine the right keywords you’ll be ranking for.

Therefore, you can run incognito Google search to find out where you’re ranked (note that incognito mode helps keep Google from changing the search results when they use your personal search history).

This way you’ll find where you stand in the rankings. So if you haven’t installed Ahrefs, take note of your current spot so you can track it after a while.

Again, what you’re looking for are any slight increases. Meaning if you move from page 7 to page 5, this is a clue that your efforts are having a positive impact and will before long pay off.

Also, it’s important to look at where most of the organic traffic comes from. That can be mobile or desktop

For ecommerce, most people have a tendency of performing research on desktops. However, the initial research might be done on mobile which later leads to more doing more searches on their desktops.

Taking note of this is crucial as you may want to optimize your pages for the best user experience.

As Google gears towards a “mobile-first” index, it is important that all ecommerce sites are optimized for this huge change moving forward.

And before I leave, I’d like to briefly discuss 10 best ecommerce SEO tools you can use to measure the success of your SEO strategy. Let’s dive in!

10 Best SEO Tools for Measuring the Success of eCommerce SEO

These tools can be useful when you’re trying to determine the benefits of using the above SEO techniques on your eCommerce website. This is considering it takes a while for these techniques to show clues that they are working.

Nonetheless, these tools can help show the subtle signs that indicate some improvements as concerns your website ranking.

Ahrefs: They help track the rankings of a website on search engines

Google Analytics: This tool helps measure organic traffic plus the engagement metrics

Screaming Frog: This tool can browse your site’s URL to collect crucial elements for the auditing and analysis of onsite and technical SEO

Open Site Explorer: Helps track the links that lead to an ecommerce website

SEOmoz Keyword Tool: Helps do SERP analysis

Google AdWords Keyword Tool: A tool you can use for creating a keyword ideas’ baseline list for your online advertising campaigns.

Ubersuggest Keyword Suggestion Tool: Helps get insights into the SEO strategies which are working for others in your industry

Authority Labs for Monitoring: Used for automating SEO monitoring or for tracking both mobile and local rankings

Mergewords: A tool for finding focus keywords, domain names, most effective keywords for niche marketing footprint and Google Adwords Campaigns

Citation Labs Broken Link Finder: A tool that helps find ‘non-functioning pages’ or ‘dead pages’ that are relevant to different topic areas

Buzzstream: Helps to research influencers, run effective and personalized outreach and for managing relationships

eCommerce SEO: Best Practices You Can Actually Do Today

Regardless of the ecommerce platform you choose, provided you will apply SEO strategies the right way – they can impact and even improve your business forever.

A good place to start before you do anything else is to ensure you run a full site audit. The thing is, there are multiple benefits of optimizing your best ecommerce platform for SEO.

However, keep in mind that the main objective of using SEO is to boost sales. Thereby, when correctly practised, you are likely to notice an increase in organic traffic. And this will then lead to increased conversions as well as repeat visitors

Besides, a simple SEO campaign could lead to hundreds of additional sales. And this won’t have to take years for you to achieve, either.

So, following the steps I have discussed in this guide can have you be leagues ahead of your competition. Plus, using the different SEO tactics above will help you come up with a strategy that can improve sales for your eCommerce website.

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