E-commerce websites have become the new reality of consumer market. For An e-commerce website to thrive it needs a continuous flow of traffic. A good flow of traffic is a vital element for the success of an e-commerce website primarily because of the potential customers it brings. Another important fact is that a continuous flow of traffic helps an e-commerce website get a ranking in search engines that can keep them ahead of the competition.
In order to be continuously displayed in SERPS, a website has to have maximum visibility possible so that it can continue attracting users towards their services and products. Why is it so important? When a website has good SERP ranking, it creates a better chance of reaching more users thereby growing the business and creating a brand, and all its all free traffic so to speak.
SEO, short for Search Engine Optimization is what helps in improving ranking in search engines by applying various techniques to improve visibility in the target audience group. SEO if applied after understanding the techniques well and implementing them effectively can be a game changer for any e-commerce websites.
Here are 10 best practices of SEO that when implemented the right way, can help you and your business thrive in the e-commerce economy.
Enabling Customer To Leave Product Reviews
Another effective way to improve SERP is by enabling Product Review. One of the biggest challenges an e-commerce website faces is building credibility for the product or services offered. Product reviews help in establishing credibility because users like hearing about the quality of product or service from people who have used it before. Product reviews are honest opinions of your customers who have used your product and can be an effective mechanism of building credibility.
Product reviews along with being a reliable source of product information for users are also a great way to add original content.
Correctly Optimize Product Images for SEO
Using images is an effective way to optimize SEO. The search engines’ algorithms allow users to find products through image searches. For an e-commerce website, using product images to optimize SEO is definitely beneficial. Modify alt tags of product images to integrate keywords relevant to your product. This will help improve the ranking of website making it more relevant.
Focus on Quality when Link Building
E-commerce websites often use link building in an attempt to increase website traffic. However, one needs to be careful while placing links both inbound and outbound. The key factor to consider is the credibility of the website you are linking with.
It is always important to vet a website well before building a link to the website to ensure you have only premium quality links. Research well on a website and look for facts like their SEO ranking, reputation and credibility of the business in the market. Ultimately it is important to remember that your links have a direct impact on both your credibility in the market as well as SERP of the website.
Ensure 301 Redirects are Correctly Implemented
Applying 301 Redirects for pages that no longer are available helps you redirect the customer to their relevant search. This is important for giving the users a better surfing experience as well as a great way to retain customers.
Use Keywords as Anchor Text
Integrating keywords into anchor text help improve visibility as well as user experience. Adding keywords to anchor texts in internal links will provide users with a clickable link. This help in building reliability as well. This will, in turn, improve the CTR.
Avoid Pay Per Click(PPC)
PPC though is often used as a preferred mode or advertisement for improving traffic, there are some major issues that PPC has that cannot be negated.
PPC places your ad on top ranks using text and pictures as a medium to attract customers with the intent of getting the best response from users. Every time a user clicks, the advertiser has to pay.
What has to be considered though is the fact that if the ads are not made well or if the links do not have a landing page that is well developed to sync with the ad, it might have serious repercussions. Users often click on ads when they like what is shown in the ad. If instead, the landing page is not well developed and linked, the user may not get to the product they wanted in the first place. This can seriously damage your credibility.
Additionally, it is observed that users generally do not click on the ads. Google statistics show that about 82% of clicks were lost when AdWords was removed.
Instead of investing in techniques and strategies that help improve SEO using organic search is a much more effective way to improve ranking.
Ensure Your Robots.txt is Correct
Modifying Robots.txt file can help in directing search engine crawlers to pages that you specifically want search engines to crawl. This helps in streamlining the search engines’ operation in ascertaining the rankings while saving website bandwidth.
Depending on the SEO strategy that you apply, modify the Robots.txt file to divert search engine crawling towards optimized pages while excluding pages where optimization is yet to be done.
Meta Description Optimization
Optimizing Meta description though does not have a direct impact on rankings in search engines; they definitely are very effective in increasing Click through Rate (CTR). Improved CTR means higher traffic inflow. Meta description if used effectively can be instrumental in increasing CTR and eventually website traffic. These tips will help in optimizing Meta description:
- To The Point: Meta descriptions should be clear, crisp and to the point so that users find it easy to understand. Limit it to about 150 characters for optimum impact.
- Relevant Information: Meta description should be informative enough for customers to decide if they would want to go to the website. Mention the product or services you offer for users to see clearly.
- Attractively Phrased: Write the Meta description in a way that attracts customers to visit your website. Offers and discounts available usually make good content for Meta description.
Optimize Your SiteMap.xml
Sitemap.xml is what is used by search engines for website crawling. Use it to prioritise the highly optimised pages. Specify priorities for Google to identify the pages in the order that you want
so that the pages with the best products of the store can be placed higher. This is something similar to arranging products in the different isles on the basis of the selling rate or popularity in a physical store.
Focus on Originality of Content
Search engines’ algorithms are specifically designed to grade websites based on originality of the content in a website. Now for an e-commerce company, achieving that often becomes a challenge because most of the content is usually product description.
However, instead of using generic product description, create your own unique content to describe the product in a way that is helpful as well as interesting enough for customers. This will help your website get a positive grading in search engines.
In case of templates or database as content, instead of using the generic content available, invest in fresh content with keywords. Using keywords will ensure your website is relevant for the product and using fresh content will help your SERP.
The goal of becoming a success in the competitive market of e-commerce is made easier to attain when SEO techniques are result oriented and precise. Applying these best practices in SEO and following them rigorously will help you improve your ranking in search engines while giving you the competitive edge in the market to help you become a success.
These are simple steps when practiced consistently will help you reap great benefits and help establish your credibility in the market. These steps can help make your business a thriving one with an ever increasing satisfied customer base.