What differentiates an e-commerce website from a typical business website is that the pages of the site are continually changing as the inventory changes.  Pages are added when products are added and removed when they are dropped.  With a static website, on site optimization can be done all at once and then merely revisited every year or so to ensure that it is still on track.  E-commerce SEO needs to be ongoing to keep up with all of the revisions that are being made to the site.  Most e-commerce sites are selling something that can also be found on other sites, which is why it’s important to work at SEO to improve the search presence of your products.

To improve e-commerce SEO efforts, be sure to do the following:

Keyword research

The keywords to target on a product page may seem obvious, but it’s still important to conduct keyword research just to be sure of how people are searching for the products that you offer.  For example, they may be searching for a specific brand name of a product.  Broad product keywords typically have a lot of competition.  For example, it’s very difficult to rank for something as broad as “shoes”.  That’s why it’s important to figure out which long tail or niche keywords also have search volume.  These keywords should be incorporated into the content on the page including the title, h tags, and URLs.

Write product descriptions

To a human visitor, a product name and an image (or multiple images) of the product may be enough to get the sale.  However, that does absolutely nothing for the search engines.  The search engine spiders can’t “see” an image and therefore have no way of knowing what that product page is about without written text that describes what’s on the page.  Write a unique description for each product and avoid using the product description from the manufacturer since that can probably be found in multiple places across the web and duplicate content is frowned upon.

Get product reviews

Since online shoppers have many products to choose from and many places to choose from to buy the products they usually do some research and read product reviews to see what others are saying.  Allowing product reviews on your site help from an SEO perspective because it adds more unique and “fresh” content to the page that brings the search engine spiders back to crawl and index it.

Optimize in demand pages first

Because e-commerce sites tend to be huge due to numerous product pages, optimizing every page is going to take quite a long time.  It’s advisable to prioritize the pages and start with the most popular product pages first and then work your way down.

Develop a secure site that is easy to navigate

The best SEO in the world isn’t going to get you any sales if your site isn’t secure or easy to navigate.  People should be able to easily find what they are looking for and have a secure online shopping experience.