Following on from my previous post, 5 Common eCommerce SEO Mistakes, I have decided to provide you with 5 eCommerce SEO best practices that will help to increase your ROI through increasing your website’s visibility in search.
1. Promote Your Category Pages
Your category pages are the most important pages on your eCommerce website after the homepage. You should therefore treat your category pages as homepages themselves and look to build as much authority around them as possible.
It is also imperative to look to build backlinks to these category pages from external sites; this could include methods such as guest-blogging and product reviews, which can still be highly effective if you are producing quality content that people will actually want to read. It should also go without saying that you should have SEO-friendly architecture that signifies to search engines exactly what your category and sub-categories are all about. Optimise these pages with keyword rich content and improved internal linking. Include breadcrumbs as well to aid the search engine’s crawlers understanding of your website and its architecture.
2. Utilise User-Generated Content
Ignore user-generated content at your peril! This unique content gives your customers a trusted perspective on your products and can provide reviews of your products which help increase conversions and brand reach. Many online shoppers will read reviews of an eCommerce store before purchasing, and very much see positive reviews as a vote of trust. Having quality reviews will signify that shoppers can trust you and will work towards increasing your website’s click-through-rate and overall conversion rate.
3. Make Searching Easy
This is one area that is often overlooked by eCommerce owners. It is essential to ensure that you do not underestimate the power of the search feature on your website, to do so will most likely lead to a decrease in revenue as your customers will not be able to find the products that they are looking to buy. A well optimised search function will ensure that those who misspell products and use synonyms are taken to the appropriate product or category pages.
Install a tracking feature on your website to gain a greater understanding of how and what your customers are searching for on your website. You can then utilise this to perform keyword research, which can prove to be incredibly insightful and enable you to generate new ideas and also ascertain which areas of your website may need improvement.
4. Use High Quality Pictures & Videos
The quality of product images and videos is often an area that is majorly underestimated by a lot of eCommerce webmasters. It shouldn’t be surprising that poor quality images and videos can have an adverse effect on your customers buying decisions. A poor quality image or video conveys a lack of care and professionalism and will only serve to put the customer off buying from you.
Good quality pictures from multiple angles and videos or products in motion give the consumer as much information as possible to help them feel comfortable enough to purchase despite not having touched the product. It is also important to optimise your images and a well optimised ALT tag will assist in your images being found in image searches on search engines, which will help to drive a greater amount of traffic to your website.
5. Add Content to Your Product Pages
There are so many factors involved in running and optimising an eCommerce website, that it is easy to overlook one of the most important aspects, the product pages. All too often you will see a product page with only an image and minimal content; this is certainly not helping to persuade your customers to purchase from you. It also means that search engines have a lack of understanding of what the page is about, leading to a lack of visibility in search.
A good place to start is to use Google Analytics to understand which are your most popular products and start to update these pages with unique, descriptive and compelling content that will appeal to your customers and persuade them to purchase.