SEO for e-commerce It’s a big business. Competition is fierce, and standing out depends on appearing on the first page of Google.
Amidst the 2020 pandemic, we saw massive global adoption, and the market marked a significant increase in growth of 46% – the highest in over a decade due to the closure of high street retail stores. Since then, the shift to online shopping that emerged during the pandemic has continued with the same vigor in the post-Covid era.
By 2026, all e-commerce sales in the global market are expected to reach $8.1 trillion, growing by 56% as of July 2023.
In e-commerce, especially from organic traffic, it’s all about Google.
Currently, as expected, Amazon is dominating the space by receiving 3.16 billion visitors per month worldwide through its platform. Obviously this does not apply to all products (mainly electrical through Amazon) and within different segments other brands enjoy a higher market share regionally.
However, over the years, Amazon has invested heavily in search engine optimization (SEO), user experience (UX), and CRO, as have the other top ten brands with market share. For example, Google runs over 10,000 tests a year – many people think of Google as just a search engine, but it’s just a business and makes a lot of its revenue from advertising (ie convincing brands to buy their products).
In the world of e-commerce, continuous testing, improvement and development of customer experiences based on data analysis is critical. A lot of times the game is zero sum – you have to be better than your competition. As an optimization expert, you have a limited number of resources, so you must segment, target, and focus your attention on impactful areas throughout your website. The good news is that this can be achieved through a variety of initiatives through diagnostic work, strategy and workflow development.
One area that is often left as an afterthought, usually template-based, is Product Detail Pages (PDP). In broad terms, these pages are your product pages, and usually contain an image, product name, a Buy Now CTA, delivery details, and some product description detailing the benefits of use/specifications. PDP pages on many e-commerce sites account for about 50% of indexed pages, but only 10-15% of revenue.
The primary factor lies in the fact that these pages are often plagued with basic SEO issues. An organic customer journey often starts either with a brand search (home page) or with a category page (PLP), which starts with broader search queries. For example, people tend to search for “men’s sneakers” instead of “Nike air force 1 men’s sneakers in gray”. The first result will show PLP, while the second will be PDP. A PDP, despite being a longer query, has more willingness to buy, and therefore a better conversion potential. Although it is important to focus on improving both, PDP often has a better chance of making quick wins and getting higher organic revenue.
How can this be achieved by adopting a technical, layered SEO approach?
Technical SEO plays an important role in shaping the impact of PDP because it ensures smooth accessibility, efficient indexing, and user-centered design. Technical SEO improvements pave the way for product pages to not only achieve better search engine rankings, but also to attract organic traffic and achieve high conversion rates.
Let’s dive into what these technical elements you need to incorporate and how you can improve them on your product pages:
Ensure that the site speed is good
Google considers website speed to be a deciding factor in rankings, and faster websites usually rank higher in search engine results. The faster your website, the faster your website will load for users to interact with to buy your products. Slow websites can greatly affect the performance of your e-commerce product pages, as they can lead to high bounce rates and prevent potential customers from engaging with your website. Website speed is also an issue with the compliance of search on Core Web Vital Indicators (CWV) compatibility with page experience.
What is a good site speed?
To ensure website speed, consider implementing optimization measures such as:
Compress images and multimedia
Reduce the number of HTTP requests
– Take advantage of browser caching
– Reduce server response times
Use of content delivery networks (CDNs)
Employ effective coding practices
Ensure that you perform regular performance monitoring and remove any unnecessary plugins or scripts that contribute to maintaining a fast and smooth customer shopping experience.
Add structured data markup
Adding structured data (Schema.org markup) to your product pages provides search engines with additional context about your products. To do this, you need to define relevant attributes such as product name, price, availability, and reviews, and then embed data structured using JSON-LD or other supported formats within the HTML code of the page. This can result in rich snippets appearing in search results, dramatically improving your product’s visibility. Your listing will become more attractive to users who are specifically searching for your product with the intent to purchase.
Also, be sure to create a PLP diagram for the main category page to let Google know about the relationship. In addition, something you can explore is to have Similar and Recommended products contain important links within the chart to add context about product relationships.
Include optimized tags, metadata, and URLs
By optimizing your tags, metadata, and URLs, you provide search engines with more rich information about your website’s content. This includes the website title, description, and keywords. When we talk about optimization, it means making sure you describe your product accurately and clearly, describe what you offer, and include relevant keywords to make it easier for potential customers to find your website.
Make sure you upload your keywords and terms that your customers rank highly for when purchasing a product – for example, in certain segments, color is more important than material.
Consider mobile phone responsiveness
With the increasing use of mobile devices, always integrate responsive design across multiple devices to ensure easy navigation no matter what device the customer is using. A mobile responsive website will adjust its layout and content to fit the user’s screen size, making it easier to use on a mobile device, but you should always consider how your page contents will appear on mobile when designing or optimizing your product pages.
Make sure mobile experience matches desktop – Since mobile is often an afterthought, and since Google indexes/ranks sites based on mobile, mobile should be prioritized.
Consider crawlability, indexability, and canonical tags
Having multiple pages with similar or identical content is common on e-commerce sites, such as different product variations or different sorting options. Canonical tags help determine the preferred version of a page for search engines, preventing duplicate content issues and ensuring correct page rank.
Search engines use web crawlers to index your website pages. Technical SEO ensures that these crawlers can easily access and understand your product pages. Proper use of XML sitemaps, robots.txt files, and canonical tags helps search engines understand your page hierarchy.
Remember, when using canonical headings, be sure not to include them in linkable assets (nav, breadcrumbs, footer, or contextual content). These pages are not indexed and attracting value to them will have no SEO benefit (Google mentions for indexing them can also be given).
Organize your site structure and navigation
Well-organized site structure and user-friendly navigation also contribute to better user experience. This can increase the time you spend on your site and increase your chances of conversion.
Make sure your main/subcategories are categorized correctly to give Google authority at the topic level so that your site is the best result shown for your targeted keywords. Using taxonomy to group pages around a single topic ensures a higher-ranking site – signaling to Google that you have complete coverage of the topic.
Include internal link
Always be sure to add relevant internal links between product pages, category pages, and other relevant content to help distribute link rights. This encourages search engines to crawl and index your pages more effectively. It also improves user navigation within your website.
The trick is to make sure that the links add value to the customer journey (and not just for SEO) and that they are relevant subtopics of the page with clear anchor text about the page they are linking to. Never use generic “learn more” and “click here”. There is no link context for Google.
Monitor errors and technical issues
Regularly monitor your site for technical issues such as broken links, 404 errors, server errors, and crawl errors, as they can negatively impact your e-commerce site. By fixing these issues immediately, you ensure the user has an improved experience, don’t lose any leads, and prevent any negative impacts on your SEO efforts.
For large e-commerce sites, you should invest in daily technical monitoring (micro-monitor or content king) because these tools allow you to have “always on” technical awareness, so if a high-value page suddenly becomes a 404 error, system redirects Domain names are corrupt, or the server is down with a 500 error – then these tools will notify you. This level of monitoring is crucial because any sudden problem can cost the company £10,000 every day if it is not fixed. Most importantly, unless you have an SEO person with access to these toolkits to monitor the account, these issues will go unnoticed.
In conclusion, technical SEO is essential for optimizing your ecommerce product pages. It ensures your pages are accessible, indexable, and user-friendly, resulting in improved search engine rankings, increased organic traffic, and higher conversion rates. By implementing technical SEO best practices, you can provide both search engines and users with a positive experience on your e-commerce website and provide your target audience with exactly what they need.
At Polaris, we deliver Professional SEO services in London. We can help you generate sales and leads for your business through our partners Search Engine Optimization (SEO) services for e-commerce. Leveraging our skilled team of SEO Managers, we drive traffic and sales through targeted e-commerce SEO initiatives for our valued clients. You can trust us Technical seo services To analyze all aspects of your website and digital SEO profile, it is our responsibility to offer every possible technical opportunity to improve your company’s SEO health, accessibility and performance.
If you would like to know more about our technical search engine optimization agency, Please get in touch to speak to one of our experts about your project today for a free account audit. Send us an email at email@example.com.