eCommerce SEO: An Intro Guide For Beginners

eCommerce SEO: An Intro Guide For Beginners
Article by Bisera Stankovska
Last Updated: November 08, 2023

SEO has the highest ROI of all eCommerce digital marketing strategies. But that’s only if you do SEO the right way - one approach to getting it right is to hire an SEO agency.

If you’d rather do it yourself, this in-depth guide will tell you everything you need to know about eCommerce SEO, including:

  • Why it’s important
  • Steps to follow to outrank the competition
  • Best practices to use to optimize your eStore fully
  • SEO capabilities of the three most popular eCommerce platforms
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What Is eCommerce SEO?

eCommerce search engine optimization (SEO) is a set of techniques and strategies for generating organic traffic from search engines such as Google or Yahoo, by making the website more visible.

eCommerce SEO tactics help online shops rank for search terms that potential and existing customers are using, which propels them higher up in search results.

Optimizing these three main aspects of an online shop and its products positively impacts search engine optimization:

  • Technical
    • Keywords in product descriptions
    • Headlines
    • Meta descriptions
    • Image names and alt tags
    • Internal linking
  • User experience
    • Site speed
    • Easy navigation
    • Mobile device experience
    • User signals
  • Design
    • Navigational structure
    • Code optimization
    • SEO content creation
    • 3 Layers of eCommerce optimization

3 layers of eCommerce SEO optimization

Why Is SEO For eCommerce Websites Important?

37,5% of all traffic to eCommerce sites comes from search engines. But, this is not the only reason why more and more eStores started investing in SEO. It also helps them:

  • Be perceived as trustworthy
  • Rank higher than the competitors
  • Improve the overall user experience
  • Get highly relevant and qualified buyers
  • Drive foot traffic through local SEO (if a physical store exists)
  • Reap the benefits of a high volume of qualified organic visitors
  • Reduce the need for spending money on paid online advertising
  • Give prospective buyers all the info they need to find their products

37.5% of all eCommerce traffic comes from search engines

Developing An eCommerce SEO Strategy: 4 Steps To Follow To Outrank Competitors

eCommerce websites often have hundreds, sometimes thousands of products.

Setting up a well-functioning SEO company strategy that yields results for complex online stores may seem daunting, but following these four tips will help with that:

  • Prioritize certain pages: When you begin your search engine optimization, identify the pages that are getting the most traffic as well as pages of specific flagship products that you’d like customers to notice first.
  • Come up with a workflow: eCommerce SEO consists of many steps and requirements: evaluating and choosing keywords, adding meta descriptions and SEO titles, naming your product images so they contain keywords, adding image alt tags and much more. It is important to create a checklist containing all of the optimization steps so you don’t leave anything out.
  • Keep your eye on your competitors: Rest assured that your eCommerce competitors are also using SEO to improve their business performance. Outwit them and outrank them by looking at the sources, meta tags, descriptions and product pages on their site – and make yours better!
  • Finish off SEO with conversion rate optimization: Conversion rate optimization (CRO) is the added SEO touch that provides extra power to your eStore’s sales funnel. It is the process of optimizing your landing pages and overall website for the highest percentage of visitors to convert. We will discuss CRO in more detail below.
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Which eCommerce Platform Is Best For SEO?

Magento, Shopify and WooCommerce are the world’s most popular CMS platforms for eCommerce websites.

Each comes equipped with numerous functionalities and capabilities needed for the successful functioning of an eStore. This also includes SEO features. Here are some of their key advantages and differences:

  • Magento: This eCommerce platform has excellent SEO capabilities. It’s equipped with a built-in SEO set and analytics tools and lets the user optimize meta tags and edit robot.txt files, as well as canonical tags.
  • Shopify: With SEO built around setting the entire online shop, this platform sets the standards for eCommerce search engine optimization. It has built-in features such as alt tags, meta tags and title tags, as well as image and URL optimization. It also provides resources for improving SEO and helping your eStore rank better on Google.
  • WooCommerce: This platform uses SEO-optimized code in its architecture and doesn’t have as many built-in SEO features as the previous two. Its SEO powers come to the fore when integrated with WordPress and free plugins.

Which eCommerce platform is the best for SEO?

Bonus Pro-Tip: eCommerce Conversion Rate Optimization

Even though it is not directly related to organic eStore traffic or SERP ranking, conversion rate optimization (CRO) has distinct benefits for eCommerce SEO.

CRO practices and conversion marketing maximize the chances that a prospect, who came to your eStore from a search engine, will become a paying customer.

Before we get to the part of how CRO benefits SEO, let’s look into the ways in which you can increase your eStore’s conversion rates:

  • Create clickable PPC ads that are highly relevant to your customers’ search queries and keywords you are using in your copy.
  • Keep your ads highly relevant to corresponding landing pages which should deliver on the ad’s promise and make it easy to complete the call to action from the ad.
  • A/B test your landing pages to find the optimal layout, copy and other elements to push the highest percentage of your visitors to convert.

In the case of eCommerce, landing pages would be product pages and they are the decisive step in visitor conversion.

To create a great eStore landing page that has a high conversion rate, follow these practices:

  • Write an attractive and descriptive headline: The headline must be relevant to keywords that users are searching for and your PPC keywords and should motivate visitors to stay on the page and complete the desired action.
  • Create concise and highly-targeted product copy: The product description section should clearly communicate what the product is about, including what its features and benefits are. Don’t forget to use keywords associated with buyers’ search terms.
  • Attention-grabbing CTA: Call-to-action buttons should stand out and be visually striking. Use concise and compelling text that focuses on what your customer will gain, to help motivate visitors to convert.
  • User-friendly purchase page or form: Use only the fields necessary for a customer to complete the purchase and try to keep the purchase finalization process minimal.

How Does Conversion Rate Optimization Benefit eCommerce SEO?

CRO benefits eCommerce SEO in the following ways:

  • Boost in ROI: High conversion rates make more of the existing resources, meaning you won’t have to bring in more potential customers to get more conversions if you figure out how to get the most of your acquisition efforts.
  • Better scalability: CRO makes it possible for your eCommerce business to grow without exhausting your prospective customers and resources. By turning more visitors into buyers, you will be scaling your eStore without running out of potential buyers.
  • Improved consumer insights: CRO attracts high-value prospects that are the likeliest to convert and help you understand your audience better and establish which type of messaging and language works best.
  • High-quality UX: Conversion rate optimization practices improve the user experience on your website. Visitors that feel empowered by your eStore and not distracted by it will visit it more often, engage with it more and even recommend it to others.
  • Boost in trust: Another factor that influences a website’s search engine ranking is how trusted it is by its visitors, which is reflected in a frequent and steady influx of visitors. By acquiring a higher degree of professionalism and user-friendliness thanks to CRO practices, your eCommerce website will instill a sense of trust in users who will feel confident to share their emails or credit card information and return to buy again.

eCommerce SEO Takeaways

eCommerce SEO produces the highest ROI for online shop businesses of all content strategies. It ensures your online store is ranked better than your competitors’ and helps prospective buyers find the products they’re looking for in your shop.

Going beyond optimization for search engines, conversion rate optimization benefits eStores with

  • ROI boost
  • Greater scalability
  • High-quality user experience
  • Greater customer trust

In terms of platforms’ SEO capacities, Magento, Shopify and WooCommerce all come with certain advantages and a range of capabilities that let eCommerce managers adjust their websites according to their strategy.

eCommerce SEO FAQs

1. Is SEO good for eCommerce?

SEO is not only good but it has become crucial for eCommerce as it helps improve the visibility of online stores in search engine results, drives organic traffic, increases sales, and enhances the overall online presence.

2. How long does eCommerce SEO take?

The time it takes for eCommerce SEO to show results varies but usually ranges from a few months to a year, depending on the competitiveness of the market and the extent of the optimization efforts.

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