The first step in customers arriving at your website will be them typing what they are looking for into a search engine. Therefore, it is essential that you are using e-commerce SEO techniques which will enable you to be found.
SEO is a constantly changing process and this means it is not always easy to keep on top of. This is especially true for e-commerce sites. The following checklist can help you ensure that you have all your bases covered.
Checklist for E-commerce SEO
1. Can Your Website Be Crawled and Indexed?
If your site is not able to be crawled by a search engine, then your content cannot be ranked. This means that your products will not be available in search results. You will need to make sure that your site is indexed correctly, and that it loads quickly. If all these technical aspects are set up well, then it will make the rest of your SEO strategy much easier.
2. Do You Have Pages With 4XX Errors?
Google Search Console is a very useful tool and one that all businesses should be using.
You will need to verify your account on the site, and once this has been done then one of the first things you should do is use the tool that lets you search for errors.
Once you know where the errors are, then you can resolve these errors which means that Google will be able to crawl these pages.
3. Have You Checked Your Excluded Pages?
There may be pages that you have excluded from being crawled such as customer profile pages and shopping carts. You should check that there are no pages on this list that have been added there by mistake.
4. Have You Added Schema Markup to Your Site?
It is easy to add schema markup to your site and there are many benefits to doing so.
Schema markup will create HTML tags and this makes it easier for Google to display details about your products in the right place. This includes price, availability and the ratings of the products.
This makes your products look more appealing and also ensures that they can be found in shopping results as well on the first page of Google. This is another tool that can be managed through Google Search Console.
5. Are Your Keywords Specific and Sales-Driven?
Targeting the wrong keywords is a common mistake that businesses make. They may think that they need to be optimising their site for the search terms that have the highest volume.
The best keywords to focus on are ones that are specific, even if they have a lower search volume. A specific phrase is more likely to direct visitors to your product page than a general search term.
6. Are You Focused on Keyword Intent?
You also need to make sure that the keywords you are optimising for understand the intent behind the query. You can use Google Rankbrain to determine if the query is informational or transactional. As a site that is selling products, it is transactional keywords that you need to be targeting.
Another way of working out what sort of intent your keyword has is to type it into an incognito window. If the keyword leads you to more product pages than anything else, then this is a good sign you are on the right track.
7. Are You Ranking for More Than One Page?
When you have worked out which keywords you want to target, you need to make sure that you are not ranking for these keywords on more than one page. If there is more than one page that ranks for the same keyword on your site, then Google will not know which order they should be displayed in.
You will want people to be directed straight to the product page, but they could end up on a different page if this is one that appears first on the results page.
You can find the rankings of each of your pages on Google Search Console and this will help you to determine if there is any competition between your own pages.
A good place to start when removing duplication n your own site is to look at the meta titles. Quite often, changing the meta title alone will prevent you ranking for more than one page so that you can give your target page the best chance of succeeding in the SERP’s.
8. Is Any of Your Content Duplicated?
You will be penalised by Google if any of your pages have more than 60% of content that is found elsewhere.
This can cause problems for e-commerce sites because if the same item is available in different colour and sizes, but these items are all on different pages, then Google may consider this to be duplicate content.
You can overcome this by having all options available on one page. This will also make it easier for your customers to navigate.
9. Can Any Thin Content Be Improved?
You also need to make sure that all of your pages have enough content on them. If Google doesn’t believe that a page will provide users with all the information that they need, then these pages will not rank well.
You need to make sure that there are images of every product that you sell, along with a detailed description. This information should be in a prominent place so that it is easy for your visitors to find.
10. Are You Using Mobile-First Indexing?
Most searches are now made on a mobile device, rather than a desktop. This means that Google puts more emphasis on the content of your mobile site, than the desktop one when it is determining your rankings.
Therefore, it is important that the content on your mobile site is just as good as that which would be found on a desktop. If someone goes to your mobile site with the intention to buy, then they should be able to do this with ease.
There are many different aspects to E-commerce SEO and it can seem quite overwhelming to try and keep up with them all. This E-commerce SEO checklist is a good place to start, but if you have any questions or need some expert help, then please do not hesitate to contact us at Power SEO.