You've probably heard that as well as having a well designed ecommerce store it's important that you hour site has search engine optimisation. With more and more businesses migrating to the internet, competition is fierce for traffic. The better the SEO on your site, the more chance you have of search engines like Google ranking your site highly. And the higher your site's ranking, the more chance you have of people finding it. So what should you do to SEO your website? |
Here are a few basic principles that every online store should employ if they want to be found by search engines
1. Keyword Research - Remember, not everyone that visits your site will also buy from it. Therefore it's important to not only drive traffic to your site, but to appeal to potential buyers. Therefore, it's really important to carry out keyword research to tell you who these people are. Tools like Google Analytics and Webmaster Tools are terrific for this. You can find out not only what your visitors typed in to reach your store, but what the ones who bought from you typed in. You can also see where you’re missing out on potential revenue by having a look at the Search Engine Queries in Webmaster Tools. This tells you how many times your site physically appeared on the Google Rankings when someone typed in a particular search term, regardless of whether they clicked on your link. From this you can see not only potential keywords to target, but also the ones which simply don't garner you clicks or revenue.
2. Clean Code - Unless you are a web designer, chances are you won't be responsible for the majority of code that appears on your website. However, you should work with a reputable web designer or developer to ensure that they build your site to W3C standards. A good site structure, which includes your site navigation, coupled with clean code makes your site easier for search engines to crawl. This will increase the chances of your site not just getting ranked, but getting indexed for the majority of pages that you want indexed. Most of the brighton web design community offer w3c compliant code as a matter of course.
3. Natural Backlinking - Search engines basically crawl the web from one link to another. Which means the more links that refer them back to your site, the more important they are going to think your site is, and thus the greater the chance of getting a good ranking. Except, it's not quite as simple as that. When some clever clogs realised this was how search engines worked, they jumped on the opportunity to sell backlinks using methods like huge directories and link farms. Search engines like Google are very savvy to these tactics, however and don't take kindly to sites that seem to garner several thousand backlinks overnight. In fact, they will often de-index these sites completely. Imagine your business simply disappearing from Google altogether! The safest thing is to pursue a slow and steady campaign of back links from sites with relevant information. If you sell sportswear, a back link from a football club or tennis coaching website will be far more valuable than a kitchen design company. Sussex seo offer a great program of steady backlinking as part of their seo and marketing services.
4. Keep Your Content Relevant and Dynamic - The worst thing you could do in terms of SEO is to work at it, achieve a high ranking and then simply rest on your laurels. Search engines are continuously crawling the internet, looking for new content. Even if you have nothing new to say, someone else out there will and their new content will always catch the eye of a crawler more than yours. Basically, if the likes of Google thinks that your site never gets updated then it will simply stop coming back to check. And this nearly always ends in a slump down the rankings. Luckily, the nature of most ecommerce sites means that they have new products coming up for sale all the time. But don't simply add these to you category and product pages. Make sure you add new content regularly to your homepage too, as this is often the highest ranked page on your website.
5. Avoid Duplicate Content- This almost goes hand-in-hand with keeping your content dynamic. However, it should also be applied to the meta data on every single page of your site. It doesn't matter if a few things on your page are the same as another, but the majority of content, around 70%, should be unique. This is because there are black hat SEO techniques that simply take the content of a page that is well SEO'd and replicate it , replacing the vital keyword they wish to come up for. If it worked once, it'll work twice, right? Wrong! Google, Bing and the like are onto you. If you have duplicate content across your pages, you risk having them all de-indexed. So be smart, keep your content fresh, dynamic and unique.
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