Getting your products found on Google should be a top priority for any ecommerce business owner. If you don’t have a clear plan for how to get your products online, you won’t be able to compete with the big guys. But even if your ecommerce store is brand new or just starting out, there are plenty of ways for you to optimize your website and increase traffic and conversions.
In this guide, we review the aspects of On Page Seo For Ecommerce Website, ecommerce seo best practices, e commerce seo checklist, and How to do SEO for ecommerce products?
On Page Seo For Ecommerce Website
eCommerce websites are all about sales, so it’s important to have a strong SEO strategy in place. If you don’t have a clear plan for how to get your products found online, you won’t be able to compete with the big guys. But even if your ecommerce store is brand new or just starting out, there are plenty of ways for you to optimize your website for the search engines and increase traffic and conversions.
Develop a Keyword Strategy
- Use Google Keyword Planner
Google’s Keyword Planner is a free tool that allows you to easily find search volume and competition data for keywords relevant to your website. It also allows you to create a list of suggested keywords based on the ones you enter, making it an excellent starting point for creating your keyword strategy.
- Use Google Trends
Google Trends is another great tool for finding keyword ideas and understanding how popular they are over time. You can use this information when deciding which keywords to target or avoid with your On Page SEO efforts .
- Use niche-specific tools such as SEMrush, Ahrefs and Moz: These are all industry-specific SEO tools that allow you access to research data about topics related (or unrelated) directly relevant information about those topics including key terms related searches made by people who have been online recently looking for information related specifically those topics within their respective niches/industries – making them ideal sources
Use Content to Build Links
Content is the most important part of SEO. It should be useful, relevant and engaging. Content should also be unique; you don’t want to copy content from other websites because it’s considered spammy and could get your site penalized by search engines.
Good writing is important because it helps visitors to find your website when they’re looking for products or services in your industry. The more popular a topic is, the more competition there will be for it on search engines—and that means you’ll have to work harder with your content strategy if you want good rankings!
Build a Linkable Asset
Linkable assets are a great way to build links, as well as increase brand awareness and website traffic. You can create linkable assets in a variety of ways:
- Ebooks and guides
- Case studies
- Blog posts with long-form content that attracts links from other sites (you’re probably already doing this)
The best part? Linkable assets are easy to produce with tools like HubSpot.
Optimize the Title Tag
The title tag is the most important on-page SEO factor, as it can be seen by search engines and visitors. A good title tag should be between 60 and 70 characters, contain keywords related to your page’s content, but avoid keyword stuffing.
In addition to being descriptive of what the page is about, each page should have its own unique title tag that isn’t re-used across different pages on your site — this helps search engines understand what each page is about and gives them more context for those pages in their indexing process. You also want to make sure that your titles are not overly long (the maximum length for Google when using AMP) because users will see only a portion of the actual text content when previewing from SERPs or clicking through from Google Search results (where they might show up underneath).
Optimize the Product Description
The product description is the main area of your page that you can optimize for SEO. Product descriptions are used by buyers to understand what they’re buying and sellers to increase conversions, so they’re important!
To optimize your product descriptions:
- Use the product name, price and other important details in the first paragraph (title) of your description. This makes it easier for both buyers and Google’s algorithms to understand what each page is about.
- Include keywords from your title in this same area — once again, this helps both buyers and Google’s algorithms find what they’re looking for more easily. It also helps with rankings!
- Finally, use a call-to-action (CTA) at the end of the description that includes some sort of action based on having read through everything above (e.g., “Add To Cart Now”). This will make sure people don’t just scroll down without doing anything else!
Optimize Image Alt Text
The alt attribute of an image is a text alternative that describes the image and its function. If you have images on your site, it’s important to optimize the alt attributes so that they provide value to users who can’t see them. Here are some tips for optimizing the alt text:
- Include relevant keywords in your alt texts so that Google can correctly interpret what each image is about.
- Create unique descriptions for each product based on its content (i.e., if an item has a funny name or description, make sure your alt text includes it).
- Use long-tail keywords wherever possible to increase SEO visibility and search engine ranking power of your website pages with relevant content
Write Unique Meta Descriptions for Each Page
Meta descriptions are the first thing that shows up in search results. It’s important to use a unique description for each page, one that describes the page content and includes your keyword(s).
If you’re using a landing page template or an ecommerce theme with pre-written meta descriptions, you can still customize them by changing any words that are repeated on other pages. For example:
- If the title of another page is “This product is great!” but yours says “This product is amazing!” then change it to match.
- If both pages talk about how great the product is for helping people improve their health then write something different about why this particular item might be useful for them.
ecommerce seo best practices
When you have a business online, it’s safe to say that a lot is riding on your ecommerce store. If your ecommerce website doesn’t rank in search engines, your chances of drawing in customers are very slim – and you won’t be able to make as much as you want to.
Fortunately, we’ve compiled a list of ecommerce SEO best practices to help you best optimize your online website to rank highly in search engines — and avoid common ecommerce SEO problems. Follow our guidelines to ensure that your ecommerce website has a shot at doing its best in organic search.
If you want to speak to a strategist about implementing these SEO best practices for your ecommerce site, feel free to give our ecommerce company a call at 888-601-5359.
What is ecommerce SEO?
If you’re not familiar with search engine optimization, or SEO, you should be! Ecommerce SEO refers to the process of optimizing a website according to the guidelines of major search engines (like Google, Bing, and Yahoo) so that it appears more frequently, and ranks higher, in search results.
Although that sounds difficult, SEO really isn’t all that challenging as long as you know what you’re doing. In fact, many webmasters and store owners have been utilizing SEO best practices for ecommerce for years without even realizing it. But competition online is fierce, and the number of ecommerce stores online grows every day. So it’s now more important than ever to get your site up to par.
SEO involves a number of tactics to improve your search engine performance, including creating keyword-rich content, designing a user-friendly website, and optimizing site elements like page titles and URLs. You may already be doing some of these things naturally, but others may be things you never even thought of.
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About our list of ecommerce SEO best practices
We recommend the following best practices for ecommerce SEO so that business owners can increase their rankings and conversions, and to also help them avoid being penalized in search. By following this guide, you’ll learn about our best SEO practices for ecommerce sites, and how to implement them on your website.
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8 best practices for ecommerce SEO
1. Use important keywords
To make your product information friendly to both shoppers and search engines, make sure your sizes, measurements, colors, prices, and other details are easy to find, read, and understand. If you have website visitors from multiple regions, think about whether or not you should include measurements in standard, metric, or both. Check product images or photography against physical items to ensure they’re accurate to color and size.
Some retailers keep their product prices from displaying until a user adds it to their cart. This can be due to a special sale, or because the retail is attempting to get around a manufacturer’s minimum advertised pricing policy. Although hiding prices may not have a direct impact on SEO, if a shopper does not see the pricing information on a product page, they are likely to leave right away. This can result in a higher bounce rate, which we’ll talk about in the next section.
Finally, try to keep your product information as up to date as possible. If a manufacturer makes new information available to you, you should do your best to include it! It’s not only valuable for shoppers, but it can help get more keywords on your page and improve your rankings.
2. Design with shoppers in mind
Your website and product page design should add, not detract, from the shopping experience. Even if you sell the coolest, most desirable products in your industry at the best prices available, a shopper will probably get frustrated and leave your website if they find it hard to navigate or impossible to search.
Design is an important part of SEO, too. If a search engine detects that your website has a very high bounce rate – that is, visitors leaving very quickly after they first access a page – you may see your rankings start to slip. A well-designed website can help cut back on bounce rates, and can at least encourage visitors to browse a few more pages, even if they don’t find what they want right away.
Your ecommerce website should be easy to navigate, with sensible menus or navigation options that clearly tell visitors what they will see when they click a link. You should also use images sparingly, since a long load time could lead to more impatient shoppers hitting the back button. And load time is – you guessed it – a ranking factor as well. So it’s in your best interest to keep your pages loading as fast as possible.
If you’re designing a new website and you’re not sure where to start, browse a few of your favorite (or least favorite!) websites and take notes. What do you like about their design and navigation? What don’t you like? From this, you can probably get a good idea of what your shoppers might prefer to see on your store.
3. Avoid cluttered, complicated URLs
The address by which a website visitor accesses a page on your ecommerce store is called a URL. URLs can contain a fairly big amount of information in a small space. They can contain categories names, product names, file types, or even actions (like “_blank” to open a new link in a new window).
SEO standards suggest that URLs should be as clear as possible, and that they should contain keywords relevant to what appears on the resulting page.
A search engine isn’t going to be able to pick up any kind of information from that URL! Instead, lean toward URLs like this:
Not only can a search engine glean several pieces of information from that URL – you sell lawnmowers, you offer a green gas-powered variety, etc. – but a person can also tell at a glance what that URL leads to. If they send the link to someone else, the recipient is probably going to say “oh, a lawnmower!” and click to see the product. The first example URL, well… that could lead to just about anything, couldn’t it?
4. Use alt text in images
If you’ve ever added an image to a website, whether through a CMS or by hand in HTML, you probably know about alt text. Alt text is a line of “alternate” text that is used in a variety of ways. It can be displayed in lieu of an image (if the link is broken, for example), or in some browsers, might be displayed when the user’s cursor hovers over the image.
Alt text is another way to get your important keywords on your site. When a search engine crawls a website, it has no way of knowing what your images are, or why they are on a specific page. However, the alt text can tell search engines that your image is of a lawnmower. This helps give further context to the page, as well – that is, a page with the image of a lawnmower on it probably contains some content about lawnmowers.
Avoid instances where alt text may not be displayed, such as displaying a product image in Flash. Even if you already have important keywords on your product or category page, alt text helps give search engines context to the images on the page, and can help get them included in image searches for those keywords.
Alt text is also very important for users who are legally blind or have a hard time seeing webpages. Section 508 of the United States Rehabilitation Act requires websites to be equally accessible to those with disabilities. If you have a very image-heavy site and don’t use alt text, a visually impaired person’s browser won’t be able “read” anything for them. In the past, some websites have found themselves in hot water for not abiding by this best practice. So ensure that all images on your site – even the smallest buttons or thumbnails – have alt text assigned to them.
5. Allow customer reviews
Reviews can help boost conversions on your product pages. It’s actually proven: somewhere around 90% of consumers say they are more likely to buy products that have reviews, even if they’re not completely positive. So it’s in your best interest to let customers speak their mind after they buy something!
Surprisingly, allowing reviews may also help with SEO, which makes review management a common ecommerce SEO tip. Customers are very likely to naturally use important keywords in their reviews. Although duplicating the same keywords that already appear on your page isn’t likely to have any impact, they might use synonyms or long-tail keywords that can help with your ranking (or at least send the right kind of signal to search engines).
6. Avoid duplicate content
If you are a retailer instead of a manufacturer, and you sell products produced by other companies online, you probably received product descriptions directly from the manufacturer. While it’s a best practice to include as much information about your products as possible, you should do what you can to avoid duplicating any product descriptions or product copy that has been provided to you.
Duplicate content that is spread out between a few pages probably will not hurt anyone. However, due to changes in search engine algorithms, more and more websites are being penalized for duplicating their product copy. To avoid hurting your rankings, your goal should be to create new, unique descriptions for each item you carry. Although this can be difficult and time-consuming – especially if you carry a lot of items – it can help set you apart from the competition.
Readers like clear, interesting, and easy-to-understand product descriptions. But humor helps, too, and anything else that you can do to put a new “spin” on your subject will probably be appreciated. Aim for 3-5 concise sentences describing your product, being sure to use the appropriate keywords or phrases that you think the item in question should rank for.
e commerce seo checklist
A 16-Point Ecommerce SEO Checklist to Boost Traffic and Sales in 2022
If you think your business growth has become stagnant, and sales are not increasing, it is probably a domino effect of low traffic on your ecommerce store. Ask yourself, have you been neglecting your SEO strategy? You definitely are!
But if you don’t want to miss the traffic opportunity for a product search query, make sure you read on.
Here is a complete ecommerce SEO checklist that you can base your ecommerce SEO strategy on to drive your business towards growth, attract more traffic, get more conversions, and have higher ecommerce revenue!
#1. Perform Keyword Research
Performing keyword research is an integral part of your ecommerce SEO checklist. If you want to improve your organic ranking, you must unearth the top-searched keywords and terms related to your product niche.
Some of the important things to remember while doing your keyword research are the following:
Always go for the keywords with high search volume, and low ranking difficulty or competition. You should choose a target keyword for a specific page on your ecommerce website and some LSI or related keywords. Make sure it matches the intent of the ecommerce website page you are trying to rank, and avoid keyword stuffing.
There are many tools you can use to perform thorough keyword research around a certain product or niche. Some of them are as follows:
Performing keyword research will help optimize your content to reach the people searching for your product online. You just have to take out the time to understand search queries and naturally integrate popular keywords in your ecommerce website.
We also have a list of 10 ecommerce SEO tools to help you grow your business. There’s just one mistake to avoid: targeting the wrong keywords, especially branded keywords.
#2. Use Unique Title Tags On Ecommerce Website Page
Upon searching for the keyword chocolate dinosaur, we came across a list of product pages on the SERP with different meta title tags and meta descriptions. Given that we don’t have a preference right now, which link are we most likely to click on? The one with the most interesting and unique title tag!
In this example, we will go with the one ranking on no. 1!
Your overall ecommerce product page SEO strategy matters more here. So, make sure you are ticking all boxes in your ecommerce SEO checklist.
Discussing Ecommerce SEO with Julian Goldie, Founder of Goldie Agency
#3. Include Keywords in Heading & URL
Look at how we have included our targeted keyword ecommerce SEO tools in the heading tag of one of our high-quality blogs. Not just the heading, but we have also included the same primary keyword in the blog URL:
Optimizing your H1 heading and URL for the search engine ensures that each page of your website is unique and tailored to the page’s topic. This is why your website page’s H1 heading is the highest priority content for the search engine. You may also include the keyword in your H2 heading too.
Similarly, your URL should help Google understand the context of your page. Ensure that it is easy-to-read by incorporating your primary keyword in your page’s URL. Since the URL is the first thing Google sees, this strategy will make your ecommerce website rank higher in organic search.
Also, make sure all your URLs are unique and you are not targeting the same keyword for two pages. This might confuse Google as to which page is more relevant for a specific keyword. Likewise, avoid using extra words that don’t add value, like “the” or even “and” in the URL.
#4. Optimize Alt Text and Image File Names
To make Google understand the context behind the images you use on your ecommerce website page, you have to optimize your images with their alt text to describe your images to Google as well as to those potential customers who are visually impaired.
Using alt text would also form a connection between your product description and product images, relating everything together. Remember, this is a very important element in your ecommerce website SEO checklist.
It is also important that when working with image files, you avoid using default file names, and rather use proper image file names that are descriptive and helpful in SEO ranking. For e.g., asos store has kept their image file name and alt text the same as their product name.
Using unique image file names and alt text differentiates your images from one another, is better for visibility, as well as ranking on the SERP.
#5. Avoid Duplicate Content
Google rewards unique, fresh, well-researched, and high-quality content. Keeping this in mind, if you copy and duplicate content, Google will be quick to spot and penalize that.
Now, there are two things that you must keep in mind.
There’s plagiarism, which could be in the form of copying product title and product description from another ecommerce store. Then, there is another thing called duplicate content on your own ecommerce website.
Duplicate content usually happens when you use two different product pages for the same product but in different color or size. For example, a blue T-shirt, and a red T-shirt on two different product pages and not the same. This is a wrong practice!
It is extremely important that you avoid both kinds of duplications and keep each of your product pages unique. Group product variations and display them on a single product page to make your ecommerce website more responsive and user-friendly.
#6. Improve Any Thin Content
Should you improve thin content, or entirely remove it? Well, that depends on what it really is, and what use and impact, if any, it has on your ecommerce website.
Thin content is low-value content that does not give users any value-adding information. In context to your ecommerce website, it could be any product page that lacks product image, description, specifications, or any other information valuable and important for your potential customers to convert.
#7. Optimize for Featured Snippet
A featured snippet is the top description that shows in Google’s Search Results. Optimizing for it should be an important element in your ecommerce seo checklist. Why? Simply because appearing in featured snippets for products you sell can do wonders in increasing your ecommerce sales.
To make this happen, write product descriptions, landing page content, or blogs in a way they can rank for featured snippets.
How to do SEO for ecommerce products?
Having great product pages is so important for your sales. These are the pages where people decide to click that buy button. Besides optimizing your product pages for user experience, you want to make sure these pages are as good as possible for SEO as well. You might think this is obvious. That’s why, in this post, we’ll show you a few less obvious — at least for most website owners — elements of product page SEO, and tell you why it’s so important to take these things into account.
1. The basics of product page SEO
First things first: A product page on an online store is a page as well. This means that all the SEO things that matter for your content pages, matter for your product pages as well. There’s a lot more to product page SEO, but for now, this will be your basic optimization. Tip: If you offer not-so-exciting products on your site, you may also want to read our post on SEO for boring products. But first:
2. Add structured data for your products and get rich results
Structured data is an essential part of a modern SEO strategy. You can’t do without structured data for your product pages anymore. There is a specific Product schema that helps you get highlighted search results, so-called rich results. In addition, you’d better mark up customers’ reviews with Review structured data. All of this will make your product page stand out and increase the chance that a potential customer clicks on your link in the search results.
The importance of this for your product page SEO is that the major search engines came up with this markup, not the W3C consortium. Google, Bing, Yahoo, and Yandex agreed upon this markup, so they could identify product pages and all the product elements and characteristics more easily. Why? So they could a) understand these pages a lot better and b) show you rich snippets like this:
The Product schema tells the search engine more about the product. It could include characteristics like product description, manufacturer, brand, name, dimensions, and color, but also the SKU we mentioned earlier. The Offer schema includes more information on price and availability, like currency and stock. It can even include something called priceValidUntil to let search engines know that the price offer is for a limited time only.
Many options to add structured data for product page SEO
Schema.org has a lot of options, but only a limited set of properties are supported by search engines. For instance, look at Google’s page on product page structured data to see what search engines expect in your code and what they can do with it.
This is why you want to add Schema.org data for product page SEO: It’s easier to recognize for Google, and it makes sure to include important extras in Google already. If you have a WooCommerce shop, our WooCommerce SEO plugin takes care of a lot of this stuff behind the scenes.
Another reason to add it is to manage expectations from customers. Your visitors will know your price up front and that the product is still in stock. Your potential clients can even see how well-regarded your product or service is by looking at those beautiful stars in the search results. How’s that for user experience! Which brings us to number three.
Keep reading: Rich results, structured data and Schema: a visual guide to help you understand »
Keep reading: Rich results, structured data and Schema: a visual guide to help you understand »
3. Add real reviews
According to Pew Research, 93% of US consumers check reviews before buying anything online. Although not everyone trusts online reviews, a lot of people do, so they can be very helpful.
If you are a local company, online reviews are even more important. Most reviews tend to be extremely positive, but it might just be the negative reviews that give a better sense of what is going on with a company or product. In addition, getting awesome testimonials is another way of showing your business means business.
Try to get your customers to leave reviews, and show the reviews on your product page. Do you get a negative review? Contact the writer, find out what’s wrong and try to mitigate the situation. Maybe they can turn their negative review into a positive one. Plus: You’ve gained new insights into your work.
If you’re not sure how to get those ratings and reviews, check out our blog post: how to get ratings and reviews for your business. And don’t forget to mark up your reviews and ratings with Review and Rating schema so search engines can pick them up and show rich results on the search results pages.
4. Make your product page lightning fast
People don’t like to wait. Especially in today’s mobile-focused world, every second counts. Even more so if you spend a lot of time and energy trying to get that potential customer to your product page in the first place. People expect a fast page, and Google does too. Of course, there’s a lot you can do to improve your site speed. To get you started, here’s a post about how to improve your Core Web Vital scores.
5. User test your product page
Looking at numbers in Google Analytics, Search Console or other analytical tools can give you a lot of insight into how people find and interact with your page. These insights can help you improve the performance of the page even more. But there’s another way of ensuring the page is as awesome as it can be: user testing.
There are loads of issues testers can find for you: From terrible use of images (including non-functioning galleries) to bad handling of out-of-stock products. It also seems that many sites fail to provide accurate shipping information and return information, which leads to trust issues.
Now, you might be thinking: Surely, my website doesn’t have those issues! But you’d be surprised. In their 2021 Product Page UX research project, the Baymard Institute found that “the average site has 24 structural UX issues on its product pages, and only 18% of the 60 top-grossing US and European e-commerce sites have a “good” or “acceptable” product page UX performance. The vast majority of benchmarked sites — 82% — have a “poor” or “mediocre” performance. And no sites have a “state of the art” product page UX performance.” You can read this fascinating study on their Product Page UX site.
While you compare your product pages to external user research, don’t forget to do your own user testing! Doing proper research will give you eye-opening results that you probably wouldn’t have found yourself.
Bonus: Build trust and show people you are for real
Getting a stranger to buy something on your site involves a lot of trust. Someone needs to know you are for real before handing you their hard-earned money, right? Google puts a lot of emphasis on the element of trust — It’s all over their famous Search Quality Raters Guidelines. The search engine tries to evaluate trust and expertise by looking at online reviews, the accolade a site or its authors receive, and much more.
This is why it’s so important that your About us and Customer service pages are in order. Make sure people can easily find your contact information, information about returns and shipping, payment, privacy, et cetera. This will build that trust for your customers. So, don’t forget!
Conclusion: Be serious about your product page SEO
If you’re serious about optimizing your product page, you shouldn’t focus on regular SEO and user experience alone. You’ll have to dig a little deeper into other aspects of the product page in your online store. For instance, you could add the Product and Offer Schema, so Google can easily index all the details about your product and show these as rich results in the search results. In addition, you should make your product pages super fast, add user reviews and try to enhance your website’s trustworthiness. And don’t forget to test everything you do!
Need a helping hand? Be sure to check out our ecommerce SEO training course. Learn what ecommerce SEO entails, how to optimize your site and boost your online presence. Want to get your products ranking in the shopping search results? We’ll tell you how. Start your free trial lesson today! Full access to Yoast SEO academy is included in Yoast SEO Premium.
Webinar: Get prepared for Black Friday!
Especially during the holiday season, you want people to land on your website and easily buy your products! Did you know that you can start preparing as early as 45 days in advance? That’s right! The better you plan, the better your website will perform, and the more money you’ll make.
We want to help everyone who owns an online shop and share important things you can do to prepare for the year’s biggest sale events. That’s why we are organizing a webinar on October 4th: “Is your SEO ready for Black Friday?”. Register now!
Check out our overview of product page must-haves
To help you stay on top of your product pages, we created a PDF that you can use to optimize your product pages whenever you have time. Most of what’s discussed in this blog post can be found in the PDF, plus more tips! Just click on the image to go to the PDF and download it.
Edwin is a strategic content specialist. Before joining Yoast, he spent years honing his skill at The Netherlands’ leading web design magazine.