The world of SEO is one of the more frustrating parts of running an online business. You can read up on the common SEO tips, and those are more than likely going to give you a competitive advantage over other companies in the market.
You'll also find all sorts of cool SEO tools that do everything from SEO evaluation to image alt tag creation.
Your first step with an online store should be to focus on the basics of SEO. That includes image alt tags, keyword use, blogging and complete product page optimization.
This way you can at least get on the same playing field as the competition.
But what about going above and beyond? Are there some more unique SEO tips you can follow to strengthen your online business?
Absolutely! And that's what we want to talk about today.
Don't Hold Back with Your Product Descriptions
The first rule is this: Skip everything that is given to you from the manufacturer. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to go with boring manufacturer descriptions. Not only are these going to make duplicate content online (bad for SEO,) but they often have typos and they lack any type of creativity that helps your brand stand out.
Your best bet is to focus on visual and written storytelling, developing a voice for your company.
A good example of this is from the Best Made Company, an outdoor apparel and gear shop that's known for creating unique, yet practical product descriptions.
Although this is a simple pair of swim trunks, the writer paints a picture of what the customer will be using the shorts for. There's a focus on the unique materials and features, but it's all woven into a story that connects with the target market.
Think Outside the Box in Terms of Product Reviews
One thing's for sure, product reviews are a must when it comes to ecommerce SEO. Not only are they going to trigger ratings on the search engine results, but your customers can come to your site and see which products are the most popular.
It's essential to make sure that your product reviews are being filled in, so I would recommend a tool like Yotpo that sends out emails asking for customers to make reviews on items they've purchased. Otherwise you have a bunch of product pages with no reviews.
Another approach is a bit more unique. It involves a Shopify app called Antenna, where the ratings are made based on customizable words and phrases, allowing for customers to see how the product stacks up where it matters most.
For example, a pair of shoes might have a phrase like “Perfect size.” So when multiple people write a review that it's the perfect size, this will jump to the top of the list to make things easier. Overall, the reviews and ratings are more functional. If a customer sees that many people said the shoes were a little big, they could order a size smaller.
Make Impressive Category Pages
Category pages might be one of the best ways to stand out in terms of SEO. The goal here is to link your category pages from the homepage, essentially suggesting a narrowed search for your customers from the start.
Categories might include:
- Holiday favorites
- For running
It all depends on your niche, but the category pages can have storytelling, lists of products and all sorts of information to guide user behavior.
Spread Coupon Love
This gets the word out about your coupons and you get some links back to your website. Not only that but the coupons generally stay on those sites even after they expire.
Establish a Rock Solid Schedule for Podcast, Blog or Other Content
Do you get excited for a certain day during the week because of your favorite TV show or podcast? For me, I listen to a movie podcast every Friday. It's posted every Friday morning without fail. If they missed a show I would be bummed and I might even start forgetting about the show since my schedule is thrown out of wack.
Take a hint from the TV networks and put your content on a rock solid schedule. This way, users know when your next awesome blog post is coming along, or when they can expect your podcast.
Make Buying Guides as Category Alternatives
Best Buy does this rather well. In addition to category pages, the company makes beautiful buying guides that link to the products in-store. These are great as pages or blog posts, since they get SEO traction and you're helping out those who might need some help when choosing a product from a more involved niche.
Consider Videos With Products in Action
One thing I've noticed is that Zappos and some other shoe companies are really good at making videos to complement their product pages. Videos are not only delivered in Google searches, but you can also post them on places like YouTube to get even more links back to your ecommerce site.
What's more is that a video is seen as another way to make the user experience more friendly. After all, customers like shopping online, and a video turns it into more of a brick and mortar experience. The only problem is that many Zappos videos are short reviews where a guy kind of spins the shoe around and displays every angle of the shoe to the customer. They're like spec videos.
However, that's not showing the product in action, where the customer can visualize themselves using the product and see what the item is best for.
For instance, a shoe company could make videos of the shoes being worn by runners. This way, the customers see that these shoes can run in wet and dry climates and along rougher paths. This helps differentiate from other more casual running shoes, and it's clear that you wouldn't wear them to a wedding.
Hopefully these unique SEO tips for online business will help you get over the hump and into the search rankings. If you have any questions, let us know in the comments below.
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