Running an Ecommerce site is a great opportunity to service your clients 24/7 independently of their location and ,at the same time, keeping fixed charges low. As all internet businesses, you need visitors to be successful online. No visitors, no sales. There are numerous online service providers who all fight for the consumers’ attention. European consumers are used to make their everyday doings online. The question is how to be visible online and reach the potential buyers?
Consumer behaviour has changed as the internet is now the main communication channel and new devices have brought new opportunities. No longer is one shopping enough to make the purchase. Quite often the buying process begins with online search. That’s why your ecommerce website should be easily found on the internet.
Many website owners and developers think that adding the product catalogues on their website is enough to make the consumers storm run to their site. Unfortunately, this is not how the internet works. You need to crawl out of your skin to get consumers attention and be visible on Google search. The sad fact it that optimizing an ecommerce site is way more difficult than doing SEO for a regular website. Changing product range, sales catalogues with hundreds and thousands of items and other ecommerce site peculiarities make the optimization hard as a rocket science. To get you started, we give you 6 tips how to do SEO for e-store.
1. The structure of product catalogues and URL addresses
Many e-stores have poor website structure and URL addresses. When creating the website businesses usually don’t think that they also need to market the site. The idea hits after the site is launched. A real SEO nightmare! It might be already too late to get started with simple steps. If you don’t consider SEO opportunities right in the beginning, the internal structure is –from an SEO standpoint – usually a mess.
Without proper structure and SEO friendly URL addresses the product pages are competing against each other rather than support the overall site score and positions in search engines. A major problem isduplicated content that is inevitable due to unregulated URL parameters, session ID-s and printer friendly versions.
If you want to avoid adjustments and re-coding you must communicate your website developers with SEO support right in the beginning of the website creation. Make sure they offer you an SEO friendly platform that is easy to manage. This way you save both money and time resources on extra work. In addition, SEO friendly structure and URL-s are user friendly and encourage sales.
2. Product descriptions
You cannot physically touch products in e-store so detailed product descriptions help to pass information about the quality and functions of the product. Product descriptions are an essential part of your sales argument. In addition, product descriptions boost your SEO. Google ranks websites based on their content which means that when you lack of product descriptions it’s difficult to say what the website or content page is about and what keywords it should rank.
PRODUCT DESCRIPTIONS FROM MANUFACTURERS AND DUPLICATED CONTENT
For ecommerce sites with thousands of products it is really painful to add unique description for each product. An easy way is to use product descriptions from manufacturers or even worse – steal from competitors. It may be convenient but will cost your site removal from Google indexing system due to duplicated content. So think carefully how lazy you want to be.
If possible, always create unique content. This is a great sales argument and will also raise your SEO value.
If it’s not possible, use these methods:
- No index tag – Use no index meta tag on pages where you cannot create unique content. This helps to avoid creating duplicated content. The price is deleting the page from Google indexing. Not an ideal solution but keeps the worst harm away from overall site score.
- Robots.txt – Like no index tag, robot-txt also blocks the site content from search engines crawlers. Use robots-txt file in archives, tags and sold-out products.
- Canonical tag – Canonical tag allows you to choose what content pages need to be indexed. For example, when you have multiple pages with the same content but the URL changes when comments are added, then adding the canonical tag tells the search engine what page is more relevant.
- Nofollow tag – Nofollow tag marks the links that search engines can’t follow. Add nofollow to links that point to pages of duplicated content. Be extra careful when adding this tag and make sure you find every single link that need to be followed.
3. Long-tail keywords
Optimization is based on keywords. When choosing keywords for a regular website the keyword search capacity is often a decisive factor. In case of ecommerce site with wide range of products you need to consider more specific keywords i.e. long-tail keywords. In other words, there is no point optimizing product pages on general keywords. For example, when the product page is about Calvin Klein Truth perfume, optimize the page for “Calvin Klein Truth” not for “perfumes”. A single product page will never get enough SEO power to rank in general keywords. In addition, with long-tail keywords you reach to customers who are closer to making a purchase.
4. Product reviews
About 70% of buyers search product information before making a purchase. Consumers trust other people’s opinions and feedback. Make sure you give your consumers a possibility to write reviews. This way the potential buyers get objective feedback about the product quality without leaving your page. The extra benefit of product reviews is that it’s free content that boosts your SEO value by offering fresh and unique content.
5. Structured data and rich snippets
Structured data is a few extra rows in the search results that are coded on page and give additional information besides to the normal page title, meta description and URL address. Different structure will make the search result more attractive and distinguish it from the competitors. The ecommerce rich snippet includes:
- the number of stars
- review number
- price range
The purpose of rich snippets is to provide a better review of the link content. This enables the user to make a decision before entering the page – whether the result meets the query they made. Read morehow to use rich snippets to improve your SEO.
6. Ecommerce tracking
After the SEO efforts you can see traffic growing. That’s a good sign that what you’re doing is really working. You are pleased – the money you pay for your SEO team is well invested. But what if the visitors are not converting into customers?
Now it’s time for ecommerce tracking. Rising visitor numbers doesn’t mean that you can throw the gun into bushes and rest on laurels. Not at all. To understand what keywords bring real benefit and sales revenue you need to follow customers’ sales path. Google Analytics has a function called Ecommerce tracking especially for monitoring e-stores. Use Ecommerce Tracking to find out what visitors buy through your site or app, including information about:
- Products: Which products they buy, in what quantity, and the revenue generated by those products.
- Transactions: The revenue, tax, shipping, and quantity information for each transaction.
- Time to Purchase: The number of days and number of visits it takes to purchase, starting from the most recent campaign through the completed transaction.
SEO for ecommerce site is a lot more complicated than optimizing a regular website. Wide range of products means a lot of product pages and duplicated content. Google favours fresh, unique and relevant content that is difficult to produce if the product range reaches to thousands of items. Before starting with optimizing think carefully about the strategy – product pages must support category pages not compete against each other.