The SEO world…
has always proven difficult to conquer. Each search engine has its very own algorithm and Google, being the king of SEO, applies constant changes and updates to its algorithm. We know well that this algorithm is super secret and that in order to find out how it works we would have to hire 007. What can we do then to rank our e-commerce in a great SEO position?
1-. Content is not king, is the emperor! After the release of Hummingbird in 2013, Google stopped focusing on keywords to rank and started giving a huge importance to the semantic value of the searches. This basically translates in Google trying to understand what really is behind the query of the user and trying to give him the best options to what he is looking for.
An error many e-commerces make is lacking product description or just using the default one that the manufacturer provides. Big mistake. The algorithm praises unique quality descriptive content that responds to the query of the customers in the search engine and that helps them with their possible doubts when they are about to make a purchase decision.
2-. Mobile optimised websites will raise to the top: As Matt Cutts predicted in 2014, mobile queries have overtaken PC queries. Google is already ranking higher websites that are mobile optimised so if yours isn’t yet, don’t waste more time and do it now. Trusted sources are saying that Google will make more than half its benefits on mobile on 2016, so it is quite obvious that mobile integration will keep on being a heavyweight in SEO in the near future.
3-. Only use high quality links: It couldn’t be any other way, the rules about link building are always changing. It is true that Google considers links as part of its ranking algorithm, but they are not the ultimate SEO ranking factor. But careful, Google Penguin is now punishing low quality or spammy links.
So which should be your linking strategy? Take your time to link to blog posts, infographics or videos of high quality or value for your user, try guest blogging for sites that are somehow connected to your area of expertise and avoid linking to not trusted sources.
4-. Test your page loading time: Early this year the Google webmaster team announced that they would start ranking sites based on their page loading time, so if your site takes long to load, you should start worrying about it.
Not only speed is important for Google SEO ranking but you also should know that around 18% of shoppers abandon the cart if the page loads too slowly (Radware). So there you have two important reasons to optimize your site loading time.
5-. Optimize the structure of your product pages: There are some elements I consider key when optimizing your product pages, so let’s go into detail one by one:
- Url structure: Google praises descriptive urls so avoid using numbers and create a more readable, descriptive url, for example:
Which once it’s been optimized would look like this:
Having your main keyword for the product on the domain will tell the search engine what the product page is about, making it easy for both Google and your clients knowing what they will find in the page.
- Title tags: Your title has to be descriptive for your clients and optimised for SEO. A good combination is to use the main keyword first such as which object is in the page, then the secondary keyword or category of the object and finally the name of the brand. Let’s see here an example:
- You can use the main keyword and brand name in the h1 and h2 tags
6-. Use nice quality images for your products: Not only it is important so the image doesn’t lose sharpness when being reproduced on different devices, but also for our position on Google images. Do not forget to name and optimize the “alt” text and description. Remember that the “alt text” is a detailed description of the image. The search engine will read this and understand what is represented on the image, being this way Google able to give it a SEO ranking.
Great product images will definitely improve your conversion rates!
7-. Take care of the usability throughout your store: You know that Google wants its users to have a great experience when browsing for what they need, so making your e-commerce convenient for your clients is making it attractive for Google. The usability of your online store will make your users stay longer on it, and that will tell Google that it is good to rank you higher on SEO.
8-. Be social on social media: You don’t want to be disruptive when your clients are about to buy one of your products but why not adding social media buttons at the end of the purchase process? Google takes social shares as signals that your customers like your page and the products inside it so the more shares you get, the more popular Google will rank you among your competition.
9-. Use your customer product reviews: Finally, giving the chance to your clients to produce and share reviews and ratings for your products will give your online store the competitive advantage you are looking for.
About 70% of buyers are looking for reviews of products on online stores or forums before making a purchase.
Amazon, TripAdvisor, Rakuten, they have already trusted their customers’ reviews so what are you waiting for?
Ranking number 1 in Google means getting as much traffic as ranks 2 to 5 combined. You won´t start ranking on the top of Google immediately but follow these points and you will see how your site starts escalating positions!
To complement this post, I leave you with this interesting infographic about the value of online reviews for businesses.
This post is also available in: Spanish