Vyshnavi Basuthkar is a Digital Marketing Analyst at ParamInfo. She has expertise in SEO, SMM, and is also skilled in web design. Additionally, she enjoys writing blogs for websites.
Building your eCommerce website can seem intimidating, but you need your customers to find your online store. And that brings us to SEO. Learn the tips to rank your eStore faster
For newbies, WooCommerce is an open-source e-commerce plugin for WordPress. With just a few clicks, drag and drop(s), you can have a fully functional e-commerce website ranging from customer engagement tools to manage inventory to order tracking to tax settings. It offers everything a professional e-commerce store need.
Now, there is an estimated 12-24 million e-commerce sites around the world. If these numbers make you giddy, do not worry. Only 1 million of these sites are making $1000/year, signifying a massive growth room. When you decide to sell products or services online, you are probably left with two options.
Either to sell on a marketplace or to create your own website/store. If you are reading this, we assume you have chosen the latter one, and we appreciate you. Launching a WooCommerce store is your first step to success. In this blog, we will make you take the next steps to reach your business goal.
First things first, why do you even need SEO for your business?
You could have the best user interface and state-of-the-art products with an appealing colour palette and beautiful fonts. But, if you are not showing up yourselves, how do potential customers know you exist?
This is where Search Engine Optimization (SEO) comes into the picture. Not with a bright blazer or anything. But with a ton of value and bonuses.
No business can stand without a strong backbone, and that backbone is called SEO. In today's competitive and convenience-focused community, customers no longer prefer to dress up and step out to get the essentials. Instead, customers want to sit on the couch and shop from their homes, making e-commerce a highly flexible business and buyer solution.
Here are some tricks you can use to help your site rank higher in the SERPs and make more sales.
1. E-commerce Keyword Research
Without keywords, it is neither possible nor advisable to optimize your products or category pages. You wonder why?
There are 700,000 Google searches in a minute. And that is a LOT! An average browser processes 1.5M digital words daily, and how do you ensure your customers find you in the search engines?
With targeted keywords.
How do you find them?
Glenn Gabe, an SEO Consultant at G-Squared Interactive (GSQi), concluded with his analysis of 3000 words that 93% were long-tail keywords and only 7% of the total were head terms.
Now you may be wondering what long-tail keywords are. Long-tail keywords are 26-40 characters typically used to get the specific version. Not only do these keywords convert, but they are also less competitive. The conversion rate of these keywords is 4.15% higher than the shorter ones.
There are numerous ways to find them. But below are a couple of our favourites.
- Google Autosuggest: The old school method. Type your keyword and let Google do the homework by providing you with autosuggestions.
- Google Related Search Suggestions: These are the suggestions you find at the bottom of any search engine results page. Type a keyword and scroll down for related searches.
- Amazon Suggest: Tap on Amazon. The biggest e-commerce marketplace in the world is the keyword goldmine. Head over to the Amazon search bar and enter a keyword you believe describes your product. When you are still typing, Amazon gives a list of suggestions around that keyword, and boom! There you go. The buzzwords Amazon recommends are highly targeted.
- Keyword Dominator: This tool helps you find the long-tail keywords a lot faster. Keyword Dominator thoroughly scrapes Amazon suggestions as for one keyword; it gives you tens of keyword ideas.
- SEMrush: SEMrush does not generate or suggest keywords with seed words. Instead, it gives you the list of keywords your competitor ranks for. And it is ah-mazing! SEMrush will also give you sites that are similar to the ones you are looking at. You can get a lot more with its paid version.
2. E-Commerce Website Architecture
Meaning, the structure that organizes and presents the content on your website. A good site architecture means a great user experience. There are three main organizational structures—namely, Hierarchical, Sequential, and Matrix.
How you organize your site is essential for an e-commerce website as you would have a considerable number of pages and do not want your audience to wander here and there.
A bad user flow experience not only hurts your audience but your SEO as well. Always remember that a user should take a maximum of three clicks to return to the Home page.
Below are a few ways to map out your website architecture.
- When you are going with drop-down menus, make sure you use HTML. Search engines cannot find the navigation unless the code is written in HTML. According to Moz, the maximum number of links per page is 100. Keep that in mind and plan your navigation bar.
- Step in the shoes of a browser and walk through the website. Where are you redirecting to when you click on a specific page, were you able to come back to the place you wanted, were you able to find what you want precisely when you land on the site, were you able to return to home or exit quickly...Ask yourself these questions, and you will have the answer throughout your trip.
- When you are going with filters, keep your attention on URL parameters.
3. On-Page SEO
We hope you set up your site architecture by this step. If not, go to step-2 and come back.
On-page SEO is all about optimizing individual pages to make them rank higher and drive more relevant traffic. And it beyond tweaking title and description tags. We narrowed down the must-have on-page SEO elements that never abandon.
a.Title Tag: Everyone knows that we should use our target keyword in the Title Tag. But do not just stop there. Adding modifiers could help you show up in long-tail keyword searches.
mobiles under 20000 ❌
best mobiles under 20000 ✅
b.Description Tag: You now have more room to write long phrases. Try to include terms like free shipping, overnight shipping, x% off if you purchase before midnight, etcetera to boost your click-through rate (CTR).
c.Product Body Copy: Hey, do you know that we never get a second chance to make a first impression? It may sound cliche, but you need to live with it as it could not be more accurate in SEO. Optimizing product pages is one of the most challenging things while working on an e-commerce SEO. The content needs to be top-notch that delivers conversions. Here are a few tactics you can play for eCommerce pages.
d.1000+ Words: If you work in digital content creation, you probably have heard this phrase a thousand times - long-form content ranks better in Google. This aptly sets for eCommerce pages.
The more you share with the customer, the more Google recognizes what your product/service is all about. Understandably, you cannot write a thousand words for every product, and it is a tad boring. In these cases, focus on writing in-depth content for your top 20-40 products and category pages.
e.Keyword Insertion (3-5x): No. We are not talking about keyword stuffing. Once you are done with your copy, make sure the description has the keyword a handful of times to help Google understand what it is all about.
4. Internal Links
Internal link building is an absolute necessity, and it is done automatically. But strategic link building gives you results—link FROM high-authority pages TO high-priority product pages.
Here are a few options
- Breadcrumb Navigation: These are the website links that enable users to track where they are and how far they are from the Home page. You can easily find them either on the top of a web page or just right under the navigation bar.
- Related Products: Much like related google search results, you can show these thumbnails at the bottom. There is a possibility you could upsell other products by just showing up.
Develop your internal link-building strategy to provide value instead of tricking Google. Build it for users but get results from SERP
5. Technical SEO
If you run an eCommerce business with WooCommerce stores, technical SEO will have a place on your calendar forever. It is no longer about meta tags or site maps. Below are a few ideas for you to win the SEO game.
- Heads Up: Schema Mark-up is a piece of code you place on your website to help search engines give more relevant information to the users.
- Product Schema Mark-Up: Product Schema is structured data of your product you publish with your search result. In other words, it displays your product information in a structured way in Google SERP.
- Review Schema Mark-Up: There are two types of mark-ups here - aggregate ratings and individual review. The aggregate ratings give users the information of overall rating value, count, best and worst rating, etcetera. On the other hand, an individual review gives review date, reviewer, review value, review body, etcetera.
- HTTPS>HTTP: When you are running an e-commerce business, odds are you would ask customer's credit card numbers, passwords, address to ship, contact number, and much such sensitive information. With HTTPS, you are adding layers of security using SSL to keep the data encrypted. Sites with SSL certificates also often rank higher in the results.
6. Create compelling product titles
Product titles are the most important aspect of your product page. They are often the first thing that customers see and will judge whether or not they are interested in your product. A good product title is concise and catchy and provides a sense of what the product does or at least what it is for. The key is to make it as descriptive as possible and ensure it's not too long. For example, a good title for a makeup brush might be Sephora Professional Makeup Brush
The title is the most important aspect of a product. It can make or break your chances of selling that product. These tips will give you some suggestions for creating compelling titles for your products.
- Be Unique - Instead of Best Mop Ever, be more specific and say, The Best Mop with Rotating Head.
- Use Keywords - When people search online, they often use keywords, so include those in your titles to help them find your product easier. For example, try something like Beach Towel - Softest and Most Durable On the Market instead of just Beach Towel. By being creative, you can come up with compelling and descriptive titles that are easy to read and get your customers excited about purchasing!
- Edit Wisely - Think carefully before putting a product title live on your website. It might be tempting to put a cute little joke or pun into it, but if it isn't very descriptive of what's actually going on, don't do it! While it might seem clever at first, eventually, Google will see through it and not rank you well for that keyword because there is no content that supports its purpose. Make sure to spend some time editing titles before putting them out into your shop, so you don't lose sales or traffic from poorly titled products.
7. Use targeted keywords in your product descriptions
Targeted keywords in your product descriptions will make your WooCommerce store more visible to your customers. While there are many ways to do this, choosing the right keywords and inserting them naturally in product descriptions is an effective way to increase visibility.
Below are a few tips for including targeted keywords in your product descriptions.
- Before you start writing, think about what type of products you’re selling and then find similar products on Amazon that have high customer reviews (look at their keywords).
- Next, try to find out what people are typing into search engines when they’re looking for items like yours. For example, if you sell winter hats, then words like winter hats or winter headwear could be potential phrases to include in your description.
- Once you have those words down, it’s time to write! Whenever possible, insert those terms naturally into sentences describing the product. If your hat is made of 100% wool yarn, it’ll keep you warm all winter long!
8. Optimize your product images
If you want to boost your search engine optimization, you should invest in high-quality product images.
Product images are one of the most important parts of a retailer's online presence and can account for up to 80% of the time spent on the site. But getting good product images is no easy feat, especially if you're not a professional photographer or designer.
Here is how you optimize your product images:
- High-Quality Images - An image with a lower resolution will affect the ranking of your page in Google, so it is important to use original and high-quality images.
- Use Large Photos - Go big or go home! And by this, we don't mean just making the photos huge, but also using multiple shots of different angles so customers can see what they're buying.
- Offer Alternate Views - Showcase products from different angles and give people more choices about what they see before buying.
- Make Sure The Camera Is Centered - Make sure that you center your camera when taking photos of products otherwise, this could result in skewed results when using these photos as stock photography elsewhere, like social media sites.
- Provide Useful Descriptions Of Your Products In Your Images - A picture may say 1000 words, but sometimes those words need clarification; provide descriptions next to each photo to ensure customers know exactly what they are purchasing when they come across your listing.
9. Set up Google shopping feed
Google Shopping is a new way to increase your visibility on Google. When people search for products on Google, they will see product listings from merchants in the Shopping section of their results page.
The best part is that these products are indexed and ranked by relevancy, so you won’t have to worry about any kind of pay-per-click fees or other costs associated with advertising.
To get started with Google Shopping, you will need to set up your WooCommerce store on Google Merchant Center as well as a few other things, like creating a merchant center account and linking your store to it.
After that’s all set up, it’s time to set up your feed for all your products to show up correctly in the system. As mentioned before, make sure that everything is synced between your online store and Google Merchant Centre in order to ensure there's no confusion.
Remember, if anything has changed in your WooCommerce site since the last update or changes were made on an item without being updated on GMC, then it'll just throw off everything.
It might also be necessary to create some custom rules for products using Variations, Attributes and Taxonomies. In addition, features such as Lightbox images or A+ content might not be fully compatible with Google Shopping's requirements, which can lead to problems when submitting feeds.
Fortunately, there are plugins that can help resolve those issues easily enough without having too much trouble at all.
10. Implement schema markup
Schema markup is a way to add structured information to your website. It can help search engines understand the content and organization of your site, and it may also improve how your site displays in certain search results.
There are different types of schema that you can implement, and each type has different rules for implementation. The two common types of schema markup that should be implemented on WooCommerce sites: Breadcrumb markup and Product markup.
The breadcrumbs markup tells Google that your site's breadcrumbs are organized.
To do this with WooCommerce, go to Appearance > Menus. Click on WooCommerce Menu Manager and make sure all products are listed under a category. You'll notice the breadcrumbs at the top of your screen automatically update to reflect what categories you have set up in your menus.
The product markup shows which categories a product belongs to on a website using an attribute. The attribute tells search engine crawlers which parts of the text represent product data and which parts don't.
To use this schema markup, find out what attributes are necessary for each product by clicking on Edit Product Attributes from the drop-down menu next to any given product in WooCommerce.
11. Take advantage of social media
Creating a social media presence is not just about being on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. These are other places to market your store. Below are some social media tricks that you may not know about but will help in your WooCommerce SEO efforts:
- Posting images with captions will get more engagement than text-only posts on Instagram and Pinterest.
- Including hashtags with your posts will help other users with similar interests or businesses see your content.
- Repurposing old blog posts into an infographic can be a great way to share information and create new content for your followers.
- Highlight products from your shop during major holidays like Christmas and Halloween to increase sales.
- Run contests where people vote for their favorite product in exchange for a discount coupon code or a gift card.
- Encourage customers to leave reviews so they feel invested in your business.
- Invite customers to share photos of themselves using your products.
- Use visuals as much as possible (pictures, videos, infographics).
- Share discounts on your social media platforms; this has been shown to boost conversion rates.
12. Use review sites
You also need to get your products reviewed on review sites. This will help you boost sales, and it's a great way to increase your visibility.
It's also important that you get people talking about and reviewing your products on social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. User-generated content is one of the best ways to attract traffic, so make sure that you're encouraging customers to post pictures and videos of themselves using your products!
Also, video content has a much higher conversion rate than other forms of media. So, if you want to reach more people and drive more sales, this is definitely something worth investing in.
Besides that, YouTube videos rank high in search engine results pages (SERPS) thanks to Google's recent change.
But note that if you use a platform like Amazon or eBay to sell your products, keep an eye on your feedback ratings. These companies can't monitor every product sold through their platforms, so sometimes things slip by - such as counterfeit products being sold as originals.
The last thing you want is somebody coming back after they've bought an item and claiming they never got it or realized it was fake when they tried to return it!
13. Use link building strategies
Link building is an important aspect of any online marketing strategy, and it's no different when it comes to WooCommerce.
There are three main strategies that every eCommerce site should utilize:
- Internal Link Building,
- External Link Building, and
- Product Links.
By using these strategies strategically, you can increase your rankings on Google and improve the visibility of your products.
However, be careful in choosing sites to link to. You only want to link to authoritative sites. Avoid linking to websites with security and SSL errors.
14. Take advantage of free tools
When it comes to optimizing your site, you have a lot of tools at your disposal. It’s not always the most intuitive process, but fortunately, some great free SEO tools can help. Some of these tools include Google’s Keyword Planner, SEMrush and Moz Pro.
Here is how to use these tools to boost your WooCommerce SEO efforts:
- Optimize your homepage with keywords that are relevant to your product or niche. Search for the right keywords using SEMrush.
- Make sure you don’t miss any pages when using a crawler like Screaming Frog.
- Use Schema markup in order to provide extra information about products.
We hope you get a ton of value from this short guide to leverage your rankings on the search engine results page. Now, it is your turn to implement these strategies and tactics. Which step do you think will benefit your WooCommerce e-store? Is there anything else you think I should have elaborated more on?
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