Simple Tips for Ecommerce SEO

Is your Ecommerce store struggling to get customers in its virtual door?

Do you wish you could attract more visitors without paying for every click?

You’re not alone.

It’s time to think about what you can do to improve your ecommerce SEO.

ecommerce seo

Did Google’s Penguin Update Affect your Ecommerce Site’s Search Engine Rankings?

But with so many webstore owners who have put time and money into SEO services having been hard hit by Google’s latest algorithm updates you have do it smart.

And the good news for you is that the best Ecommerce SEO tips are the simplest ones.

Can SEO really be simple?

Lots of people think that SEO is strictly the secret art of over-priced, number-crunching, wizard-geeks. But Google’s latest updates, including Penguin in April 2012, seem to be indicating that basic, solid SEO tactics that anyone can do are the safest bet.

This is a simple guide to help you take your rankings to the next level.

Ecommerce SEO 2012

1. Have an active blog:

If you don’t have a blog on your ecommerce site or if your blog is inactive, you are missing out on all the SEO benefits a blog can bring. Just regularly publish solid keyword-focused posts and before you know it, Google will soon start ranking you for relevant search terms you never knew existed and sending you traffic every day.

For example, if your store sells cycling shoes and accessories, you could publish relevant, informative topics that your potential customers might be searching for, like updates on prominent cycling events, reviews of new bike accessories, etc. Jazz it up with biking humor and celebrity cyclist news. These types of posts can be an easy way to get a lot of exposure and back-links, without much work.

For example, the page promoting this wacky t-shirt on Threadless, scored that site over 5,000 backlinks (including the one I just gave it!)

ecommerce seo backlinks

With my established ecommerce sites, I have noticed that I’ve hardly ever published a sentence that didn’t eventually bring me a business lead via Google. Meanwhile, my most popular blog posts bring potential customers into my e-store daily. I guess that’s why they say that Content is King.

Of course, not every person who finds your blog via search engines is going to head over to your shopping cart and buy your products, but if you aim for an average conversion rate of 1-2% you start to appreciate the value of high ranking blog posts.

The beauty of a blog is that there’s no SEO hocus-pocus involved, though it helps if you follow basic on-page SEO practices and do a bit of keyword research before you start writing (or hire a writer). But don’t feel you have to work too hard, Google is increasingly rewarding pages that are not 100% properly optimized!

Here’s a challenge for you: Try rolling out 10 relevant blog posts over the next month – and see what happens to your search engine traffic!

2. Use Unique Product Descriptions

If your ecommerce store is reselling products manufactured by someone else, chances are your product descriptions are identical to those found on hundreds of other sites on the Web. But if your product page content is the same as what’s found on Amazon, there is absolutely no reason why Google would send customers to you, over a larger, longer established site.

Another point: Google might penalize your rankings due to “duplicate content.”

The best way to deal with this issue to create unique, keyword-focused product descriptions that are at least 350 words long. If this seems like too much work, start with your top five products and then wait a bit. If you notice an increase in traffic to those product pages, you will probably start to feel inspired to improve other pages as well.

3. Product reviews = SEO

Customer reviews on your product pages make you look important and popular, but they can also do great things for your SEO. It’s called “user-generated content.”

Let’s say your webstore sells Bosch washing machines. Instead of you hiring a writer to create content on your site about Bosch washing machines, you let your customers tell the world exactly what they think of their Bosch washing machine in detail. The search engines read these reviews and send you traffic based on relevant queries which your reviewers are answering. Sounds good, right? Especially since customer reviews (even negative ones) are also great for boosting sales.

The question is: how to get your customers to write reviews? Usually they need a friendly reminder. For our ecommerce clients, we set up an automated email that is sent exactly 7 days after a purchase, which asks the customer if they are satisfied with their order and encourages them to leave a review of the product on the site. We let them know that we value their opinion, and it’s true because their comments are very valuable for our SEO!

Is Ecommerce SEO Safe?

These are three core eCommerce SEO practices that often work to boost your rankings and traffic from Google, without any clever tricks that could you get penalized in the future. Pretty simple, right?

The truth is that all these three points – the blog, the product descriptions, and the customer reviews – are good for your marketing and sales on so many levels, beyond SEO.

This kind of holistic marketing strategy is exactly the direction that Google, SEO and the Web are heading!

Not happy with your current search engine rankings? To get a free SEO audit, and find out whether you can achieve a higher ranking with safe white-hat techniques and how, click here.

About Shai Atanelov

Shai brings his strong analytical skills and in-depth knowledge of usability methodologies to our team. His performance as a project manager, leader and facilitator for cross-functional teams helped him acquire skills required in the design and development of websites and applications.

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