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These days, lots of people use search engines for shopping, whether they're in the early stages of research, or they're ready to buy something right now. Whatever stage of the buying process they're in, if you sell the products they're searching for, you're going to want to be found, and there are a few different things to consider that are specific to ecommerce websites that can help search engines match your pages to the intents of people's search queries. First and foremost, remember that everything that applies to normal content also applies to ecommerce pages. The common best practices around website linking structures, external links, and onpage optimization are all very important.
But in an era where search engines want to explicitly identify content at the most granular level of detail that they can, we want to make sure that search engines are very clear that your ecommerce content is exactly that. Beyond the typical HTML code that is found on web pages, you can use very specific metadata to help identify your content as ecommerce content and describe the products that you are offering. But even before you put in place those technical components, it's still as important as ever to know what keywords your potential customers are typing in to search engines.
Make sure to analyze your keyword research to determine what intent people have when using certain keywords, and what content they're looking for. If you find that people are searching for comparisons between you and your competitors, then you might consider building content specific to that need. For those typing in keywords that indicate that they are further down the purchasing process, like "buy product X" or "product Y coupon," you'll want to ensure that the content you're creating contains an easy path to the shopping cart. One more thing that's unique to ecommerce is that the products that you sell are often being discussed outside the bounds of your own website.
You can find discussions on forums, social media, or other websites about the products that you sell, and these can be opportunities to jump into the conversation as a knowledgeable product expert. If someone is posting a review of their experience with you, you can use things like Google Alerts or Social Media Monitoring Tools to make sure you're aware of it, and good or bad, it's an opportunity for you to listen and join the conversation. If people are expressing negative feelings about you or your product, you can reach out to them and resolve the situation in the public eye.
If people are saying good things about your products, reach out and say thank you. It might even lead to social media activity that ends up building links or user generated content for you. All of these public mediums are seen by search engines, as well as people, and you can gain some very tangible benefits from both.
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