The Definitive SEO Ecommerce Checklist for 2019

The Definitive SEO Ecommerce Checklist

Getting traffic to your ecommerce website that turns into sales and revenue takes a combination of marketing and search engine science. All the things you need to do to ensure a solid online presence and user-friendly website can easily be missed in the excitement to get your business up and running.

That’s why we’ve put together this search engine optimization ecommerce checklist.

This ecommerce SEO checklist identifies all the key components needed for a successful ecommerce website.

Your SEO Checklist for an Ecommerce Website

The Definitive SEO Ecommerce Checklist

Lets get started!

Table of Contents

1. Perform Keyword Research
2. Setup and Monitor Google Analytics on Your Ecommerce Website
3. Optimize Your Shopping Cart
4. Optimize Your Website
5. Use 100% Unique Content
6. Optimize Your Off-Site SEO

1. Perform Keyword Research

Keyword Research Done Right

One of the most important items on your checklist is keyword research. Researching the right keywords for your products or services and using them on your website is the best way to drive organic traffic and convert visitors into customers.

How do you do keyword research?

Well, there is no one way to do the research. There are a variety of methods out there. But there are several online tools that you can use to figure everything out.

Using tools you can find  the terms with the most search volume. And not just search volume, you can also figure out their competitiveness against other keywords, how much they cost in paid search campaigns, and more.

A few keyword tools you can use are:

Once you finalize your keywords, you should use them on your product pages and throughout your website. You can track their effectiveness in Google Search Console and update them based on Google Analytics and your website conversions.

2. Setup and Monitor Google Analytics on Your Ecommerce Website

Setup and Monitor Google Analytics

Speaking of Google Analytics, you’ll definitely want to add this to your ecommerce website. The insights you can get from the data are an absolute goldmine.

E-Commerce SEO - Google Analytics

Setting up Google Analytics (GA) is a pretty straight forward process. Google walks you through the entire setup here. If you use Google Tag Manager, you can also add your tracking code there too.

Once GA is installed and tracking, you’ll start to see all sorts of data populate your dashboards.

You’ll see data on the demographics of your visitors, how long they’re visiting your website, what pages they’re viewing, and the pages that are converting the most.

The best thing about all of this data is that you can use it to make data-driven changes to boost the performance of your site.

Once you have your analytics account setup you will gain insight on how to drive traffic to your online store more easily.  You will also be able to view your ecommerce KPIs list and make data based decisions based on that rather than gut instincts.

3. Optimize Your Shopping Cart

Shopping Cart is Optimized

Make sure you optimize your website, but especially the performance of your shopping cart and checkout process in order to increase your conversion rate. If visitors aren’t able to navigate your checkout process to become customers that buy something, your ecommerce website isn’t going to be around for very long. Optimizing your shopping cart means making it simple and easy for visitors to checkout.

Think of your current shopping cart and checkout process when answering the following questions:

  • How many steps does a visitor have to take to purchase their items? How many times do they have to click next before final purchase?
  • Can visitors create an account? Can visitors store their credit card information to check out faster next time?
  • Is your shopping cart easy to to get to when looking at products on your site? Can visitors easily get to their cart to review, edit, or delete items?

The answers will help you focus on how to help your shopping cart convert at a higher rate

4. Optimize Your Website

Perform SEO on Ecommerce Website

Not only do you have to optimize your checkout process, you have to optimize your entire website as well.

Best on-site seo practices for ecommerce are:

  • Title tags
  • Meta descriptions
  • Image file names, title tags, and alt tags
  • Product descriptions
  • H1’s and H2’s on each page
  • Internal links

Using your new keyword research, you can update the pages on your website so they can be tailored to how your users search for products. Read more about writing content for ecommerce websites here.

One thing to note about on-site optimization is that it isn’t a set it and forget it type of activity. While you do have to let your on-site SEO do its thing for a few months, you definitely want to check back and see how it’s all working.

If you notice that your products aren’t showing up for your keywords, then you should revisit and adjust your on-site SEO. Using tools, like GA and Ahrefs, you can easily stay on top of this

5. Use 100% Unique Content

Unique Content for Ecommerce SEO

I briefly mentioned content above, but think it’s super important to address on its own.

Google and other the search engines absolutely LOVE 100% original, unique content. This also includes the content you use in your on-site optimization.

Not only do the search engines love original content, but your audience loves it too. No one wants to read the same regurgitated stuff over and over again. No one also wants to read content that isn’t relatable or geared towards them.

But writing 100% unique content you’re showing who you are as a business (your brand style, tone, and personality), giving your audience content they actually care about, and helping your SEO.

Examples of ecommerce sites with good content:

Your content should speak to who you are as a business. Once you get the hang of writing in your style and tone, it will all come together naturally

6. Optimize Your Website’s Off-Site SEO

Ecommerce SEO Checklist - Offsite SEO Elements

In addition to managing your on-site optimization, you have to manage your off-site optimization as well. Your website might not be the first place a potential customer sees your product or company name. They might find you on someone else’s website or social media.

And while these referrals to you are good, you want to capitalize on them as much as you can. You do this with off-site optimization.

Off-site optimization includes your social profiles, link opportunities from other credible websites, and reviews.

It’s a huge part of the ecommerce SEO puzzle because it shows trust and social signals to the search engines.

So, how do you manage your store’s presence in places other than your website?

Here are some off-site SEO tips for ecommerce sites:

  • Create and monitor your social accounts
    Claim and update your social media profiles and actively post on them.  Make sure you have effective social media marketing strategies in place and post on a regular basis.
  • Ask customers to leave reviews and respond to them
    Getting reviews for your products is super important. This is a positive ranking and social signal for both search engines and users. By responding to all reviews, even the negative ones, you’re showing that you care about your customers experience and your brand reputation.
  • Get listed on national and local directories
    All industries have niche-specific websites where you can list your store, url, and a brief description. These sites yield some weight, as they connect you to that industry. (Don’t just list yourself on any directory, that can backfire really fast). If you have a local brick and mortar location, you can also try to get listed in local directories as well. This will help get your local community involved.

Why Worry About SEO for Ecommerce Sites?

SEO for e-commerce sites is very different than SEO for non-ecommerce websites. How you write your product descriptions, title your images, even upload your images (their file names), can all have an effect on your product’s ability to show up when a user searches for its qualities.

By following our ecommerce seo checklist, you’re telling the search engines what you’re all about and giving your users the best online shopping experience. And both of those things combined is a recipe for ecommerce success.

The Definitive SEO Ecommerce Checklist

Need Assistance With Your Ecommerce Project?
Request a Free Ecommerce SEO Audit

Not sure where to start with your new seo ecommerce checklist? Contact our team to request a free ecommerce seo audit. SurgeStream, a Virginia SEO agency, will audit your website and provide actionable tips to improve the SEO and user experience of your site. To get started, request your free audit by filling out the form below and one of our e-commerce SEO pros will get back to you as soon as possible.

About SurgeStream

SurgeStream is a full service digital marketing and SEO company that works with small to medium sized businesses in order to help increase their website's online visibility.

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