image of girl placing e-commerce order and a delivery guy

E-Commerce SEO: Mastering the Maze

E-commerce SEO is important for online and click-and-mortar stores to attract organic traffic and drive sales.

Aside from running pay-per-click and traditional advertisements to drive sales for your online stores, investing in e-commerce SEO is another avenue you can use to improve your store visits and sales.

Therefore, doing SEO for e-commerce the right way is very crucial.So, in order not to be confused or caught in the maze of overoptimization, this post will be a guide to things to focus on while doing e-commerce SEO.

Conquering e-commerce SEO goes beyond basic keyword targeting. While technical SEO, on-page optimization, and content marketing remain essential, new challenges like evolving algorithms and voice search demand fresh approaches.

This guide empowers you to navigate the e-commerce SEO maze. We delve into customer research, technical SEO intricacies, and diverse content marketing strategies (including user-generated content and shoppable content). Local SEO tactics for click-and-mortar stores are also explored.Finally, product page optimization is addressed, emphasizing the importance of unique descriptions and avoiding duplicate content. Unpopular mistakes like neglecting website performance and overlooking alternative marketing channels were also highlighted.

By understanding these elements and avoiding pitfalls, e-commerce businesses can unlock sustainable growth through a well-rounded SEO strategy.

Challenges in E-commerce SEO:


Doing e-commerce SEO is very challenging. The challenging nature of doing SEO for e-commerce is not only due to the amount of competition involved, product cannibalization, or the challenges of maintaining unique product descriptions,but rather, it includes:

1. the challenge of keeping up with search engines evolving algorithms that consider user behavior and personalization,

2. The challenge of understanding and adapting to the constantly changing ways customers discover and purchase products online,

3. The challenge of adapting your website structure and content for voice search queries and available SERP filters, and

4. The challenge of managing negative online sentiments that come due to negative reviews, comments, or superior or well-recognized brands selling similar products.


image of a giant representing e-commerce SEO challenge and short guy representing the solver

Focus areas while doing SEO for e-commerce:

Knowing where to focus while doing SEO for e-commerce helps make your work less challenging and more streamlined. Below are five key focus areas for your e-commerce SEO:

a girl looking through a telescope to show focus area in e-commerce SEO

Consumer or customer research and keyword research:

Understanding your customers is vital for any successful e-commerce store.
To effectively conduct customer or consumer research, you will have to first define your target audience and know their demographics, interests, and pain points.
Then, using existing data, learn about the behavior of your target audience on your website,social media page, and other platforms. Learn the kinds of products they search for and buy and their engagements through social media and product reviews.

Thirdly, you can conduct your own primary research. This you can do by creating an online survey to collect your target audience’s buying habits, preferences, and pain points. You can also conduct interviews or organize focus groups to collect data ranging from consumer motivations, needs, buying journeys, and their thoughts on your products, competitors, and the market in general.

You can also uncover the search terms they use to find your products during their online searches during this step. You can then use keyword research tools to evaluate keyword difficulty and search volumes. After your research, you can analyze the data to identify recurring themes and patterns and utilize the insight to refine your SEO efforts and develop customer personas.

Local SEO:

Optimizing your online store for local searches is essential if you have a click-and-mortar store.
To conduct local SEO for your click-and-mortar stores, first, you will have to do the traditional local SEO tactics like claiming and optimizing your Google My Business account, building citations, and managing other online listings.

In addition to that, you can explore other unpopular yet potentially impactful local SEO tactics, like leveraging local influencers to showcase your products,optimizing for local voice search, encouraging local customer reviews, and participating in and sponsoring local events.
These tactics help to improve your brand’s visibility within your business community or locally.

Content Marketing:

The common content marketing strategies for e-commerce SEO is to create valuable content like blog posts, product guides, and infographics to educate customers, build brand authority, and improve keyword rankings.
Irrespective of the fact that these strategies are still productive, there are other unpopular yet effective content marketing strategies for e-commerce that can be very beneficial. These includes;

User-generated content: this involves using the power of your existing customer base by encouraging them to create and share content like product reviews, testimonials, user-generated images and videos, and behind-the-scenes content, like offering your customers a glimpse into your brand behind the scenes, interactive content like quizzes or polls, and shoppable content like seamlessly embedding product recommendations and purchase options within your content.

Knowing your target audience and creating content that resonates with them the most is the key to success when it comes to e-commerce content marketing strategies.

Product page optimization:

Creating compelling product descriptions, high-quality images and image thumbnails, and user reviews all contribute to higher conversion rates and improved SEO. It is important to look out for duplicate contents while optimizing product pages.

In order to avoid duplicate product descriptions that hurt e-commerce SEO, it is important to leverage the built-in e-commerce platform functionalities to manage small product variations efficiently, highlight what makes each product unique compared to similar offerings, add variation to each product description template utilizing each product unique use case or details, and utilize data feed management tools to manage large product catalogs.

SEO for E-commerce Mistakes

There are some unpopular mistakes that e-commerce SEO professionals make. These include:

  1. Focusing solely on keyword ranking and ignoring the need to optimize for loading speed, mobile usability, and visual stability.
  2. Underestimating the power of community building around the brand or the power of user-generated content.
  3. Ignoring internal linking and backlinking.
  4. Overlooking local SEO for click-and-mortar stores and
  5. Focusing solely on organic traffic and ignoring paid search advertising and social media marketing.

E-commerce SEO goes beyond keywords. While technical SEO, on-page optimization, and content marketing remain crucial, it is vital to conquer emerging challenges like personalization and voice search. Learn to avoid the unpopular mistakes mentioned, prioritize the user experience, and explore alternative marketing channels. This guide empowers you to navigate the SEO maze and achieve sustainable online success.

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