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Tips to Building an eCommerce SEO Strategy in 2021

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    eCommerce SEO is something all online businesses need to invest in. With the total e-commerce sales for U.S. retailers being valued at $578.5 billion in 2019, standing out from the increasingly competitive online landscape is crucial. Fortunately, the process of search engine optimization (SEO) 5improves your website’s visibility on results pages. 

    When it comes to building an eCommerce SEO strategy, some tips include focusing on link building, doing keyword research, and improving user experience. In addition, 

    effective copy, cross-platform compatibility, and customer reviews are some other key areas to consider.  

    Learn more about the process of driving traffic to your eCommerce site with our top tips below. 

    Table of Contents

    1. Conduct Keyword Research 
    2. Revisit Site Issues
    3. Decrease Page Load Time
    4. Develop a Mobile-Friendly Site
    5. Write Compelling Copy  
    6. Display Customer Reviews
    7. Engage In Link Building
    8. Utilize Canonical Tagging
    9. Enable Schema Markups
    10. Optimize Search Capabilities
    11. Track Your SEO Performance

    Conduct Keyword Research 

    A significant part of SEO for eCommerce is conducting keyword research. The first step is to understand your target market and their behavior when it comes to searching for your goods and services. Understanding what people are searching for, how they search for it, and the format they use are all steps to improve your website’s visibility. 

    To help you out, a keyword planner tool can identify the most commonly used words and phrases related to the topic at hand. By researching search volume and user intent, you’ll be able to figure out which words to include in your blog, product descriptions, and other areas of website copy that point your target audience in the right direction. 

    Revisit Site Issues

    It may sound obvious, but one of our top eCommerce SEO tips is to address any bugs and issues that can negatively impact user experience. This can include things like broken links, 404 errors, images that won’t load, or search errors. By fixing these issues, you’ll be able to improve the ability of search engines to index your site.

    If you update your website regularly or decide to redesign it completely, you’ll need to create a new sitemap. This lists the key pages of your website and will help you improve web traffic in addition to your search ranking. Part of the process includes revisiting internal links, checking navigation issues, and anything that can lead to crawl issues. 

    Depending on the complexity of your website, paying for a professional website testing service can save you a great deal of trouble down the line. They can potentially spot any issues related to the usability, compatibility, performance, and security of your page. 

    Decrease Page Load Time

    SEO for eCommerce websites includes thinking about page load speed. The faster your website loads for users, the better it is viewed in terms of search engine rankings. A slow page load speed can also impact your bounce rate and reduce your conversion rate. Ideally, a website should fully load in under 2 seconds, with under a half-second being Google’s desired time frame.

    To improve loading speed, you should choose appropriate file types to optimize file size. For instance:

    • Use PNG for clear transparent images
    • Use JPEG for complex and detailed photographs
    • Use GIF for logos and other images that don’t use plenty of colors 

    In addition, you should also consider compressing images via HTTP compression, and combining JavaScript and CSS files. 

    Develop a Mobile-Friendly Site

    Part of crafting an eCommerce SEO strategy is ensuring that the content not only works well on larger screens like desktop devices but also smaller screens like mobile phones. This includes making sure that the font size you use is legible, any links can easily be clicked on, and that mobile navigation is seamless.

    Responsive design is another key component of SEO for an eCommerce website. This means that as the screen size changes between devices, elements are resized to adjust to each screen space. For desktops that have more space, this means that there is more room for text and complex menus.

    However, it can be complicated to have plenty of navigation choices on smaller screens, so it may be best to keep your graphics simple. 

    Write Compelling Copy  

    Good copywriting is another key way to improve SEO for eCommerce sites. An effective website should clearly express your brand views and present your products or services in the best light. Focus on the problems that you can solve for your customer and what benefits you have to offer them.

    This includes creating product descriptions that are straight to the point and have a call to action, describing your brand story, and maybe even including a blog that includes useful articles and interviews for your target audience. 

    As we’ve previously mentioned, including relevant keywords and search terms throughout your website can help improve your SEO and boost your search rankings. Ensuring that there are no typos and errors can also improve brand perception and provide a more professional feel. 

    Display Customer Reviews

    If a potential buyer is on the fence, having a selection of five-star customer reviews can strengthen your brand’s credibility and encourage them to make that purchase. Part of eCommerce site SEO is improving customer interaction, which can lead to improved conversions and profits in the long run.

    To increase customer trust, you’ll need to feature real reviews. Images and videos can further strengthen your reputation, so providing users with rewards and incentives can help you gain reviews. Customer reviews are also a great way to gain any feedback and address customer concerns, again improving your brand’s reputation. 

    Engage In Link Building

    Depending on how you do it, link building can be an effective way of signaling brand authority to search engines like Google. Gaining backlinks, external links, and internal links from other websites signals that your site can be trusted. 

    However, not all websites are made equal. Sites with high authority and that are trusted, such as reputable news websites, tend to be more valuable compared to sites with a smaller following. In general, gaining links from sites with similar topics and niches leads to a better result.

    Networking with bloggers, inviting guest writers, and reaching out to online directories in your neighborhood are some ways to get started with link building. 

    Utilize Canonical Tagging

    It might sound complicated, but canonical tagging is a relatively simple way of improving eCommerce SEO. A canonical tag is a way of communicating to Google that a particular URL is the best version to index. This prevents identical or duplicate versions from appearing on more than one URL. 

    This helps search engines figure out which version of a page they should rank for certain queries, which one should be indexed, or whether link equity needs to be split between different pages or limited to one page. 

    Since it can be easy to miss canonical mistakes, conducting a thorough website audit can help you detect any missing or incorrect tags and address them as soon as possible. 

    Enable Schema Markups

    Another technical aspect of SEO for eCommerce is schema markups. Simply put, these are specific snippets of code that you can add to your website to signal to search engine crawlers what data can be found on your page. This way, they’ll be able to point users in the right direction depending on their chosen query.

    Schema markups are important because they help users see important information right away on search engine results pages. This can include things like your location, cost of goods and services, area of service, and so much more. 

    To help you out, Google’s markup helper can help you create the relevant tags needed to create a “rich snippet” that provides relevant information to users.  

    Optimize Search Capabilities

    Although it is not directly linked to our other eCommerce SEO tips, improving your website search capabilities can improve user experience. Have you ever had a difficult time finding what you needed on a website? Using meta descriptions, keywords, and headers can improve the search experience for customers.

    If you have a complex product catalog, a filter can also help customers view things in alphabetical order, price order, or product category. Just make sure that the search function is clearly visible in both desktop and mobile versions of your webpage. 

    Track Your SEO Performance

    How do you know if the SEO tactics for your eCommerce website are effective? You’ll need to view your analytics and keep track of your metrics so you can figure out whether you need to stick to your current marketing strategy or make some changes. Since SEO for eCommerce sites can be difficult to track, Google Analytics combines a variety of metrics in one place. 

    Some factors to track performance include:

    • Number of organic visitors
    • Click-through rate
    • Bounce rate
    • Page speed
    • Website authority

    By keeping an eye on these numbers, you’ll be able to see if you’re following eCommerce SEO best practices. 

    Frequently Asked Questions

    How much does eCommerce SEO cost? 

    The cost of eCommerce search engine optimization (SEO) varies depending on what is included. Most small and midsize businesses pay between $750-$5,000 per month based on the scope of the project. A one-time project will range from $1000-$30,000, while hourly rates for consultants fall between $100-$300 per hour.

    What are the 3 types of SEO?

    There are three types of SEO that one can use: on-page, off-page, and technical. On-page SEO is anything done while you're designing your pages to make them more search engine friendly. 

    Off-page SEO deals with things outside a website's page such as backlinks from other websites which help improve its ranking in searches; lastly, technical SEO refers to special actions taken by developers within the site itself, like making sure it easily indexes for bots so they don't have trouble crawling your site during ranking updates.   

    How can I improve my SEO ranking? 

    There are a number of ways to make your website more search engine friendly. One way is by providing relevant, authoritative content that will be useful and desirable for people to read. You should also update your site regularly, so you can keep up with new developments in the industry or simply improve upon what you have already published.   

    What is SEO in blogging? 

    Blog SEO is the practice of optimizing a blog's content, site architecture, and HTML code to make it more appealing to search engines. Common tasks associated with this optimization include: on-page optimizations like keyword research, installing plugins that improve page loading speed or provide internal linking opportunities, and improving your overall website design.

    Is Google Analytics an SEO tool? 

    Google Analytics is a free digital analytics tool used by more than half of all websites on the internet, and for most SMBs it's an important SEO analytics tool they need to evaluate their current search engine optimization strategy.

    Ultimately, eCommerce site SEO involves combining these different methods and crafting a strategy that works best for your unique needs. Unlike other methods like paid advertising, SEO for eCommerce websites can take several months before you see the results you’re after. However, it is a cost-effective way of improving SERP visibility in the long run. 

    Learn more about the process of building your SEO strategy with our team at Bliss Drive!

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