This is a guest post by AdNabu.
You might be curious to know if the online shopping industry is as potent and functional as retail stores. Well, those who focus on the actual numbers will be aware of the fact that eCommerce stores have overhead retail businesses in many ways. If you take a good look at the numbers between 2007 and 2019, the demand for creative and inspiring online businesses has increased by nearly two folds. And, this trend is only going to get better.
In fact, if you look at the penetration of eCommerce stores, between the years 2018 and 2019, you will see a drastic jump from 13.2 to 14.4 percent. This means the web has tripled sales!
What is eCommerce SEO?
By definition, search engine optimization is a smart way of attracting more organic audiences to your website. This kind of traffic is essential for any business to grow. Traffic can be generated from many sites, ranging from Yahoo to Bing, to Google.
What is important is, maintaining a strong impression amongst online viewers, and ensuring that they look forward to your content. In the case of an eCommerce website, they need to anticipate your products and services. Without this, your online venture will not last for a long period of time. In fact, it wouldn’t see the profit for a good amount of time too!
When it comes to eCommerce SEO, your primary goal must be to appear in the top 10 search results. As you go deeper and deeper, the chances of people noticing your business reduces.
Of course, Google (or any search engine) offers hundreds of pages for online viewers to explore. But, more than 90 percent of them stick to the first results page! This is why businesses engage in eCommerce SEO, to find their mark on the first page.
Why is SEO important for eCommerce businesses?
So, why does SEO actually matter for eCommerce businesses? Let’s decode this with numbers. The moment your business site appears on the second page of search results; your traffic inflow will drop by 80 percent. Yes, you read it right! Here, we are dealing with more than half the volume of organic audiences.
And, these audiences include everyone, from around the world. To be more precise, less than 5 percent of online users decide to search on the second page of search results. If you talk to online viewers, less than one percent would value businesses found on the second page of search results. This means, finding a spot on the first page makes a big difference.
Studies have revealed that businesses that rank within the first page, see an online traffic inflow of 32 percent. This proves the “level” of competition eCommerce businesses face in the industry. It is not easy to find a spot in the online market.
Without the help of search engine optimization, you are less likely to go anywhere. This may sound rude and unfair – yet, this is how the online marketplace works. As a business owner, you need to find a way of improving your site, optimizing your marketing strategies, and attracting target audiences.
Top 10 eCommerce SEO strategies to use in 2021
1. Clear & Useful Product Descriptions
First things first, you need to give your products a perfect description. Mighty search engines like Google rely on what you post on your website. The search engines have algorithms to compare content, against keywords. This means if your website contains minimal description, and nothing else – search engines will not waste its resources on you! This is why you need to build clear, and lengthy descriptions.
Long descriptions don’t mean content stuffing. At any cost, you need to focus on the quality of your content. When there is quality, search engines like Google can do magic on your behalf. To be more precise, your website will find a way in the top search results. In case your eCommerce store has a hefty catalog, you need to stick to your key products. When you choose to write more quality content, Google will find it easier to rank your site. To make things much simpler, consider using keywords.
Another reason why eCommerce stores need descriptions is to keep the customer engaged. Never underestimate the patience and readiness of customers. Even if you have posted content with 5000 words, target audiences will read it, if the post is meaningful and useful.
2. Use JSON-LD Structured Data for high Search Results and CTR
Next comes the use of structured data. Once again, you need to appreciate the fact that search engines like Bing and Google are fond of organized, quality websites. One of the best ways to attract these search engines is with structured data. Webmasters are always encouraged to follow these data patterns. Crucial benefits in using structured data are better search results, ability to build knowledge graphs, breadcrumbs and rich AMP results.
With enhanced search results, businesses tend to experience a better click-through rate. The CTR is required for diverting more traffic towards websites. It works by providing better information to users and ensuring that the content is visually appealing. Undeniably, when your CTR becomes better, your online ranking will also increase. These are chain reactions, which need to be monitored and understood! According to experts, an increase in CTR is a direct signal of user engagement.
3. Be Mobile ready – PWA & AMP Pages.
Mobile devices have definitely caught up with the lifestyle of everyday internet users. Now, online users expect websites to zoom and even pinch. This means, your site has to be terribly responsive. Thus, concepts like AMP and PWA have surfaced.
By definition, PWA represents progressive web applications. These are designed to ensure the mobile website experience. The way your website works, looks and feels is handled here. The moment a user lands on your website, these aspects will be of great importance. After all, the term was coined by the search giant, Google.
Choosing between PWA and AMP can be a challenge. It strongly depends on your content and features.
4. Improve Site Speed and reduce Loading Time
Slow websites are real turn-offs in the online marketplace. If your eCommerce site is slow, it would be better to shut it down! This is because a majority of the online users want websites to load in less than 2 seconds. And, if your website takes more than 4 seconds, nearly 40 percent of them will turn away. Doesn’t this sound amazing? This is how thriving the online market is. Site speed can boost or blow away conversion rates.
Surveys reveal that 75% of customers are not ready to buy from sites that showcase poor performance. Likewise, 50% of online buyers relate the speed of the site to its loyalty. And, if your site is not fast, the news will spread quickly. This is because online users love to share their experiences with the rest of the world.
A very good example of site performance and better conversion rates would be Walmart. After boosting the speed of its website, Walmart saw a drastic change in performance. In fact, the brand’s revenue increased by leaps and bounds. In terms of numbers:
1. Revenue will increase by 1% for every 100ms improvement.
2. Conversions increase by 2%, for every 1s improvement in the speed of your website.
5. Show Customer Reviews in SERP
Customer reviews can do wonders to your eCommerce store. This is mainly because search engines like Google are curious to know why online users like (or dislike) your business. And, when someone takes time to leave a review behind, there needs to be a good reason.
Many times, online buyers have little time to even rate a brand. Your service needs to be exceptional if you want a promising review. To be honest, customers are more inclined to leave negative reviews, than the good ones.
That being told, you must spend plenty of effort in appealing customers and grabbing as many positive reviews as possible. If you ask, consumers are more likely to leave a review.
Hence, your marketing strategy needs to incorporate customer reviews and testimonies too. You need to build a plan, where customers are bound to share their thoughts. The act might sound simple, but it needs plenty of planning and analysis. Timing plays an important role in how you extract reviews. No matter what method you use, emails, review landing pages or SMS messages – timing needs to be accurate. Always wait for a day or two, before asking for reviews. Above all, ensure that you post the reviews on your eCommerce site.
6. Target Long-Tail Keyword Variations in Content
Target long-tail keywords are important because they can increase the number of monthly searches and visitors to your store. Sites like “Neil Patel” have generated nearly 175,000+ visitors using long-tail keyword phrases. Even though long-tail keywords don’t find a spot in the top 10 results of Google, you will be able to drive more organic clicks.
To leverage the benefits of long-tail keywords, you need to engage in keyword research. Many eCommerce businesses believe that keyword research is a thing of the past. Well, this is not how reality works. To be more precise, you cannot build long-tail keywords without thorough research. It is crucial for brands to identify what can keep audiences engaged.
Even though the phrase says “long”, your keywords can begin with just “4” words. As the keyword becomes longer, it will be easier to secure better ranks. The additional words in your key phrase should be as important as the primary keyword. This is why you need to begin with “intentions” in mind.
Meanwhile, you need to understand more about the competency of the customer. Those who type long-tail keywords are likely to be much more qualified, than those who stick to short-tail keywords.
7. Improve site Navigation
By definition, site navigation represents the internal links of a website. These links are required for connecting the pages together. It is important for your site’s navigation to be flawless. Mainly because online users rely on it for finding products from the store. Additionally, search engines like Google use the site navigation to index and discover new pages. It helps the search engine figure out more about the context and content on the website.
When you plan on building your site’s overall navigation, you need to bear in mind that online users should be given top priority. Always try to keep them comfortable on your website. Once the user experience is handled, you can switch to search engine optimization.
To begin with, you have to improve content hierarchies. This simplifies the overall process of finding products from the eCommerce store. If the store features a huge amount of information, you need to break it down into smaller categories. Next, all the content categories have to link together.
Try to find a “midway” in linking content. Also, don’t forget to link the content and product marketing pages together. This kind of horizontal linking supports in SEO performance.
8. Make Conversion rate optimization in your monthly to-do
The talk about eCommerce SEO will remain incomplete without conversion rate optimization. By definition, conversion rate represents the percentage of viewers who want to execute your site’s call to action. The formula for calculating the conversion rate is rather simple. This is where the total number of visitors is divided by the number willing to complete the CTA.
CRO is crucial for boosting the performance of your website. It can boost conversion. And, when there is a higher rate of conversion, search engines are bound to believe that your website is well structured, has a clean design and owns effective formatting. To be more precise, it appeals to target audiences without any hassles or tussles.
As a part of your CRO enhancement efforts, you need to build CTAs that are text-based, and that can be integrated within blog posts. This is always a healthy, and useful practice. It increases the chances of a visitor completing a course of action. Then, you need to test your site’s landing page. This should be an integral item in your marketing toolkit. Mainly because the landing page acts as a spot where online visitors gain some lead into your site.
9. Internal Linking of Relevant Products, Categories, and Resources
Just like keyword research, many people claim internal linking to an obsolete technique. Unfortunately, this technique is not lost, or futile! In fact, it has more value than ever before. Internal linking is important because it helps search engines understand, index, and even find the right pages in your eCommerce store. If your store features thousands of products, you need to leverage internal linking. Try to incorporate internal linking into your site in a strategic manner. Remember, if internal linking is done properly, it will give more authority to your site.
To be very honest, internal linking is required for boosting your rank in Bing, Google, and Yahoo.
When it comes to internal linking, you have many best practices to follow. To begin with, ensure that the anchor text of your website is rich with keywords. To play safe, you can match the internal link and your keywords. This is a big “no-no” in the world of backlinks. Many times, you will come across guides that encourage developers to use keywords in their internal links.
Next, the internal links should be made to important pages. The page you connect with needs to have some authority. It should not affect the “importance” and “purpose” of your site.
10. Use Video Marketing
Video marketing has grabbed plenty of attention in the past two years. Take a good look at HubSpot, you will be able to understand more about the current state of marketing with the help of videos. Well, it is not a big surprise why video marketing is famous.
One of the basic reasons why every website needs to engage in video marketing is because it works, and is easier to absorb. Online users who have little time for anything, consider it as a smart approach. To kick start with video marketing, you need the following:
- A strategic plan.
- Always begin with what you are aware of.
- Create! Don’t stick to planning, and forget about creation.
- Search as much as possible. Look for genuine content.
- Build a strong network with influencers
- Exploit ads. Make use of its absolute potential.
Ecommerce has changed drastically in the past few years. This condition is only going to improve and become much more challenging. If you wish to stay ahead in the race and see some revenue – you need to follow a strategic marketing plan. The topics discussed in this post can be tested on any eCommerce site.
These strategies have lasted the test of time. And, they are likely to improve the CRO and appealing nature of your business. Whether it is video marketing, or internal linking, or showcasing positive customer reviews – customize and ensure that it blends with your business vision.
AdNabu helps improve sales in Google Ads for eCommerce companies. If you are running the search, google shopping, or display campaigns in Google Ads, This software will be able to increase your sales.
Gaurav Belani is a Senior SEO and Content Marketing Analyst at Growfusely, a content marketing agency specializing in content and data-driven SEO.