Search engine optimization (SEO) is the practice of ensuring that your website ranks higher on the search engines results page (SERP), but what does it practically mean for those with ecommerce websites? As guidelines around SEO can be vague at best and complicated at worst, let’s go over some best practices for ecommerce SEO to help you get started.
Start your ecommerce SEO strategy with keywords research
Just like any other SEO, begin your ecommerce SEO strategy with keywords research. These are search terms that your target audiences will be using when searching online. Keep things simple by focusing on one or two keywords for each product, page, and category. Keywords research involves:
- Generating a keyword list: List out your products and come up with potential search terms. Broad keywords might be too difficult to rank for, so try to be more specific by considering your unique selling points. Rather than “shower gel”, it might be “organic, 100% chemical-free shower gel for babies”.
- Looking at search volume & competition: Using ecommerce SEO tools, check out the search volume for each keyword on your list. Keywords that get a lot of search volume are also more competitive, and the sweet spot is to use a balanced approach between the two.
- Thinking about the user intent: In other words, what is the goal of your target audience when they search online? If you’re working on ecommerce SEO, user intent is probably to make a purchase so focus on keywords that are more likely to lead to a purchase.
Write effective product description
A big part of ecommerce SEO is to write product descriptions. After all, ecommerce websites have hundreds of listings and shoppers need more information than just the product name, image, and price. Include a detailed description that effectively “sells” the item to shoppers by considering what they would want to know and how to make your product sound appealing. But ecommerce SEO isn’t just about writing descriptions for shoppers, so make sure you sprinkle in keywords in there as well.
Other best practices for ecommerce SEO
Of course, your product page will feature more than just the description. Here are other best practices for ecommerce SEO.
- Write unique descriptions for each product: You may be tempted to copy and paste information from other websites, but you should refrain from doing so as this is known as duplicate content.
- Use internal links to your advantage: Linking from one internal page to another is good for ecommerce SEO. You can link from products to blog articles, especially if you need to provide further information, and use keywords in the anchor text.
- Don’t forget about images. You’ll want to make sure you write a caption (aka alt text) for them in a descriptive way and use your target keywords so that search engines and those with visual impairments can understand them.
- Pay attention to your URL structure: URLs should be short, concise, descriptive, and include keywords where possible. Not only will this provide a better user experience by telling them what a page is about, but they’re also helpful for search engines.
- And so much more like considering overall site architecture, speeding up your site, avoiding broken links, etc.