Tips to Optimize your eCommerce Website for Search Engines: Increase your Visibility & Traction

by Hankly, New Delhi
25th May, 2021 01:15pm

Technology has slowly shaped customer behaviour towards online shopping. Today more than 78% of US citizens prefer to shop online. Ecommerce industry stands somewhere around 4 trillion globally. Some experts have concluded that the pandemic has pushed the online shopping behaviour forward by 5 years.

Many creators and businesses have decided to go online during the pandemic to make the most out of the internet. However, this means that there is excessive competition. It is important to rank yourself for search engines so that when a customer looks for something, you show among the top results. Failing to have a strong SEO and SERP ranking can affect your business unfavourably.

For businesses who are just starting online and for those who already are online, this article will help you optimize your ecommerce site for maximum visibility and traction.

Let’s dive in to learn tips for better optimization of your ecommerce sites.

1. Technical SEO Audit

The first things you should do is perhaps take a technical SEO audit for you r website. In case your website is not public yet, you can save this tip for later. Technical audits tell allow you to analyse your SERP rankings, SEO status, compare various metrics with standard recommendations, and your website’s overall health.

It will show what’s wrong with your site’s SEO and what you can do to improve it. By implementing the recommendations, you can significantly optimize your ecommerce website for search engines.

Here are the 3 best tools you can use to perform a technical SEO audit:

• Google Search Central (formerly Webmasters)

• Pingdom DNS Check

• SEMrush Site Audit

2. Use Breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs are small text paths that usually indicates where a user is in a website and how he reached there. They make it easy for a person to trace back to where they began from. Though breadcrumb is a small yet effective way of enhancing UX, but it also is beneficial for a site’s SEO. It allows google to analyse how a website is structured which it reflects in search results also. It is very rare for a person to land on a specific page in a website through their homepage. Mostly people visit pages through organic searches done via search engines. This gives relevant search results to visitors and reduces bounce rates.

3. Optimize Product Pages

Another way of optimizing your ecommerce site for search engines is to optimize your high-impact pages. High-impact pages are the ones that receive maximum traffic and engagement. Optimizing them means to provide enough structured data for these pages so that search engines can crawl through them for best search results.

A few things you can do to optimize your product pages and high-impact pages are:

• Use relevant keywords in the title of the pages. You can use keywords you want your site to or page to rank for.

• Provide relevant images and videos for your products/services. Always add alt text to the images and captions for videos. Since search engines cannot perceive an image or a video, this text allows them to crawl through it and understand it.

• Post user reviews on your product pages. This not only adds credibility to your product/services and gives insight to users, but it also allows google to use the reviews and ratings to show in the search results.

• Try to keep your URL simple. By default, URLs are a combination of random alphabets, numbers and symbols. Avoid this and instead use simple and easy to remember words, like www.travelmaster.com/Asia-travel-guide-2021.

• Add metadata to your pages. You can use YOAST SEO plugin for WordPress or any integrated tool on your platform to add metadata. This meta data also allows google to crawl your page in more detail and show in search results.

4. Optimize Images

Being an ecommerce store, you’ll have to upload a lot of images along with your products and other content. This means that your media files will take a large chunk of your storage space and everytime customers open a page, their loading will consume a lot of server resources.

Having too many images can seriously impact your load time which in turn can affect your bounce rates. This is neither good for UX nor for SEO. It is best that before uploading the images you optimize them.

There are various online tools that allow you to compress an image size without compromising on the quality of the image. Some of these tools are:

Compressor.io

JPEG.io

Optimizilla

5. Social Proof

Many communication theories like limited effects theory has suggested that people do not believe what media tells them as it is. Which means that your advertisements, publicity, and promotion might only have a limited affect on your target audience. However, the theory suggests that people are more inclined to act on the advice and opinions of their family, friends, and social circle.

Therefore, social proof is an important element of an ecommerce store. It means the validation, reviews, and opinions you gather on social media and your own website by genuine people. This mobilises other people to consider your products/services.

It’s not just restricted to reviews and comments. Elements like ‘20 sold out of 40 items…’ or ’36 people reviewed this product…’, are also a great and subtle use of social proof. It increases you visibility, popularity and traction.

6. Improve Page Load Speed

Website’s load speed directly impacts your bounce rates. It has been recorded that websites that take more than 3 seconds to load see 22% bounce rates and sites that takes longer than 5 seconds to load sees 70% bounce rates.

Bounce rates in turn impact your SEO. You need to optimize your website for speed as well. This takes away a lot of small factors that can hinder your overall growth and visibility. You can do these simple things to boost your site speed:

• Host your website on an excellent web hosting with good resources.

• Use optimized themes and plugins with cleans and light codes.

• Compress media files (images/videos) for web before uploading.

• Use cache plugins to create cache memory of your website on your visitor’s devices.

• Minify CSS, JavaScript, and HTML.

• Employ Content Delivery Network (CDN) to decrease response time for user requests.

7. Add XML Sitemap

Uploading an XML sitemap allows search engines to crawl your website more effectively. It gives away important and relevant links to the search engines which can be displayed in search results. By giving page priority to search engines, it can greatly enhance inbound traffic on your high-impact pages.

You can use YOAST SEO and XML-Sitemaps to generate and upload an XML sitemaps easily.

8. Create Content

A great way to leverage SEO through keywords is by publishing regular content. Creating content can also be leveraged in your marketing strategies. Posting regular content makes you relevant to customers beyond sales point. This a great way to engage with your audience.

Through content, you can also implement your keyword strategies more robustly. You can boost your engagement through content and impact your conversions.

Wrapping up!

We understand that along with offering great products and services, visibility and popularity is equally important for a successful business. Most of the people find products/services through organic search. This means that it is imperative that your business ranks on top in search result pages.

By following the above tips, you can significantly impact your SERP rankings and increase your visibility on both social media and search engines. 

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