Complete Ecommerce SEO checklist – Rank #1 on Google

Whether you are just getting started or improving your existing eCommerce site, ranking higher than your competitors on Google is a must, but that’s not enough. These days you must rank number 1! ThinkOrion SEO checklist for eCommerce businesses will help you get there.

SEO for ecommerce

A research study by Optify in 2011 showed that number 1 ranking websites had an average of 36.4 percent click-through rate (CTR), number two had 12.5 percent and number three had a CTR of 9.5 percent.

Better SEO means better clicks, which probably also means better sales. Unlike other types of websites, e-commerce sites are some of the most difficult to optimize in search engines. Search engines love sites with original and detailed content.

E-commerce sites are the exact opposite. They are mostly made up of product images and offer very few detailed descriptions. So, if you haven’t yet implemented a solid SEO strategy, you’re definitely missing out a lot, on impression, clicks, and sales. If followed properly, our checklist will surely improve SEO for your ecommerce website and help you rank higher.

Follow this SEO checklist for eCommerce to help you rank your business #1

SEO checklist for eCommerce websites

Let’s get into it!

Optimization of the product sheet 

Google pays a lot of attention to the product sheet, especially for e-commerce sites. Earlier this year, Google announced that it started displaying similar items in Google Image Search to help users find products related to those in their searches.

Google’s recommended having a product diagram about the pictures. In addition to appearing in searches for similar items, the correct use of the product schema generally helps make products appear in search results. 

Google will display many structured data elements in the product sheet, including price, star rating, product availability, etc.

If possible, make sure to regularly update the star rating field when customers leave new product reviews. This adds more credibility to your scheme and makes it more reliable for Google. 

Unique product description

Only use unique and original product descriptions. Avoid content provided by the manufacturers, so you don’t end up with thousands of duplicate descriptions of your competitors. Consider writing the descriptions as detailed as possible using your keywords. Remember to enable product comments. Users’ submission of comments helps to attract search engines’ attention.

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Meta tags

Insert the name of the product in the title, write the description carefully, set the Rich Snippets that influence the CTR in the SERPs. 

Optimize images

Rename the image file using the keyword (product name) when it is still on your computer before uploading it to the site. Also, insert the chosen keyword (product name) in the ALT attribute of the image.  

Manage out of stock products

To make sure you keep the pages indexed among the search engines’ results, do not delete the pages of products out of stock. Instead, create a 301 redirect to pages of similar products or give the possibility to reserve the item when it is available again. 

Simplify menu and site navigation 

While main menu navigation is essential for internal linking and SEO in general, it is vital when it comes to ecommerce businesses. Simple navigation allows users to find what they are looking for easily. Highlight prices, and perhaps the products on sale will reduce the bounce rate and the abandonment rate. 

Consider using the 3-click rule, which indicates that the user starting from the page he is on must find what he is looking for after 3 clicks. 

The pages identified in your menu are the ones that are most likely to be indexed and ranked in the search results. 

Home Depot is a great example. Its “All Departments” menu includes only the 17 most general product categories. However, when passing over each category, it expands into sub-category options (and also into tertiary options and so on). This way, the internal linking value provides a noticeable boost to Home Depot’s menu pages.

Create a sitemap

Submit a sitemap to search engines (you can do this through Google’s Search Console ) with the site’s URLs to make it easier for spiders crawling pages.

Internal and External Links

Create a structure of internal links to products, product categories, new arrivals, and promotions directly in the product sheets’ contents. As for the external links, they are as crucial to ecommerce business as for any other site. Backlinks are needed but focus on those that help improve the reputation of the brand.

Website speed

Users usually abandon any page loading that takes more than 2-3 seconds. So, the speed of the site is essential to convert a visitor to a potential customer. You can check the speed of the site using free tools such as Google Page Speed.

SEO checklist for eCommerce - Speed Test

Mobile site

Having a mobile e-commerce site is vital for online business. Searches from mobile devices have dramatically increased in recent years, surpassing those from the desktop since they are user friendly, easy, and quick. 

The URL structure

When it comes to the URL structure, the best solution is to keep the products as close to the root folder as possible. While it may seem more logical to have several more in-depth directories (such as www.example.com/products/stuff/things/thing-1), it is advisable to adopt this strategy. 

If you look at all the major online retail sites, you will notice that their product entry pages are rarely more than two folders away from the main directory. It’s a great tip to include longer parameter strings after the product folder, but make sure the product name appears in the search results URL. 

If you want to take another step forward, you can add the BreadcrumbList schema to your site to outline the site’s directory structure. 

Collection of reviews

Although they are part of the product sheet, they can be related to both the products and the seller.

Reviews are likely to play a significant role in customers’ purchasing decisions. Knowing that many people have had a positive shopping experience with an e-commerce business eliminates any doubts or uncertainties about whether or not to buy on the platform. Therefore, it is essential to set up a system, whether automatic or not, for collecting reviews.

Do not limit this by a form within the product sheets. You can consider sending emails to customers or inviting their Social Network followers. It is also important to show your top reviews on the home page or put a badge above the menu or in the footer. 

To Conclude

Every aspect of your website needs to be thought through carefully. The positioning of an eCommerce site on Google is complex, but carefully implementing the above-listed SEO checklist for will help your eCommerce website see dramatic improvements in the traffic and sales results. 

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