Essential Web Marketing & SEO Practices For Online Shopping Websites
With the passing of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the holiday season is right around the corner, which means online shopping sites will soon be entering their fiercest period of competition for the year. Search engine optimization is a crucial factor during this time for bringing traffic to your e-commerce website.
Companies that neglect to continuously practice good SEO will inevitably be left in the dust come Christmastime. Since SEO is an ever-evolving undertaking, it requires near-constant attention in order to perfect. Here are some essential SEO practices to help you gain an edge over the competition.
Optimize Your Google AdWords campaign
Google AdWords is a wonderful little tool that can be used to great advantage for e-commerce sites looking to gain visibility on Google’s search engine. If you’re not already running a Google AdWords campaign, then you should definitely be looking into it.
The first step for any Google AdWords campaign should be to properly define your target. What do you want to get out of the campaign? What constitutes success? How much are you willing to pay-per-click and what kind of realistic returns do you expect?
Once you’ve defined your goals, you should use AdWords to research keywords that are relevant to your products. Look for keywords that have high monthly local searches but that aren’t overly competitive, which will make it very challenging to rank for them. These keywords can then be implemented in your campaign for certain product pages.
Google AdWords also lets you run a Google Shopping campaign which, when properly optimized for SEO, can rapidly produce more sales for your business. Google Shopping works in much the same way as AdWords does, with a main difference being that it shows a product listing at the top of search results rather than a page blurb.
Prevent the dreaded duplicate content
Having duplicate content on your website is a major faux pas in the eyes of Google’s search algorithm. Duplicate content can especially be a real thorn in the side of online shopping sites due to the fact that they tend to contain identical content in the form of product lists and descriptions, for example.
One way in which you can prevent this dreaded phenomenon is through the use of canonical tags. If you have, for example, a paragraph that appears on multiple different URLs even though it is from the same product listing, this will be seen as duplicate content by Google. Proper use of canonical tags will phase this issue out.
Tying into this, it is wise to avoid using manufacturer descriptions for your products because chances are they can be found elsewhere on the web. Instead, rewrite your product descriptions from scratch. While this can seem laborious, it is absolutely worth it.
Exceptional content will prevail
Having a high-quality content strategy is a necessity for good SEO. Enhancing the user experience with unique and consistent content will do wonders for search engine optimization.
The most common way to include great content on your website is by implementing a blog that is regularly updated. Video content is also becoming increasingly popular and will no doubt soon become a key to success.
Other forms of content that can work are testimonials from satisfied customers, user-generated content such as reviews and updating your most popular product pages with unique written content.
It should also be noted that making your website mobile responsive is extremely important for SEO and directly ties into the quality of content. If your website is not properly optimized for mobile devices, you will unquestionably be losing many potential customers.
Bonus practices and summary
In addition to the fundamental practices given above, it would be wise to give these a spin as well:
* Optimize your product images
* Make sure to have different and engaging meta-descriptions for each service page or product listing
* Provide users the ability to share products and reviews to social media
* Be certain that your website loads without delay and contains no broken links
* Take the time to seek out only high-quality backlinks to your website
SEO is all about providing users with content that is relevant to their web searches and satisfies their needs. If visitors can’t find your website, you are obviously going to be at a disadvantage when trying to sell things to them.
Optimizing your Google AdWords campaigns, avoiding the all-too-common problem of duplicate content with online shopping sites and making sure that you have a consistent, high-quality content strategy to implement will allow you to begin reaping the enormous benefits of search engine optimization.
But, as stated in the beginning, it is important to always continue the practice of good SEO and also keep on top of current trends in SEO in order to not fall to the back of the line.
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