5 Steps to Build an Effective Search Optimized e-Commerce Website

The success of your e-commerce website can be dependent on the volume of traffic that comes to your website. E-commerce websites rely massively on Google’s dominance on the web in order to gain visibility. This means the more highly placed in search results for targeted keywords or phrases your website is the more value you’re likely to get out of your website.

For an e-commerce store, this is no less true. With online stores like Amazon and Alibaba taking the biggest share of the e-commerce market, new entrants in this market will be smarter to invest more efforts in building a strong SEO profile for their web-stores.

There are different aspects you need to consider when building a well search-optimized web-store and we will be discussing five of them in this blog post.

Optimized Branded Domain Name

The very first step in creating a powerful online store that will rank high in search results is to come up with a branded and search optimized domain name.  Your brand starts with your name and it has everything to do with how well your website is optimized for search.

Brands have been known to have invested jaw-dropping figures on their website names in order to gain an advantage when it comes to search and direct traffic.

The right name will help you establish trust with users searching for products online, which will help your click through rate (CTR). A reasonable CTR is required for Google to keep you ranking well for targeted keywords.

Add a Blog to Your E-commerce Site

To have an edge over other e-commerce outlets, consider adding a dedicated blog section to your website. Your blog will extensively feed your entire website with a high volume of content for search engines to index. This will give you an increased opportunity to rank for your target keywords.

Your blog will also serve as a meeting-point for your customers to learn more about new products and create more awareness for your brand. With high-quality content being regularly served on the blog, your e-commerce website will be set to attract more inbound links than your competitors without a blog.

For effective keyword domination in search results, you can optimize the content of your blog for your preferred keywords and expect to see higher rankings for those keywords. It is, however, important to steer clear of keyword stuffing.

Embrace User-Generated Content and Self-Hosted Reviews

User generated content, if well managed, can serve as a reliable source of content for search crawlers to feed on, helping your site rank higher for keywords in search results.

Self-hosted reviews will help you immediately establish credibility and user trust with your customers, which Google also uses as one of their search ranking factors. You can display transparency and instantly tackle false reviews before they damage your brand as opposed to leaving the fate of your business in the hands of Yelp and other popular review sites.

Focus on User Experience (UX) and Optimized Design

As most e-commerce website owners focus more on deep-linking and other technical aspects of SEO, they neglect the most important focus point in creating a successful e-commerce website, User Experience or UX.

As Google and other search engines get smarter at rewarding websites with greater user experience, it has become imperative for website owners to focus on creating a stellar user experience for their customers. Easy-to-navigate websites rank higher than websites with difficult navigation and tacky designs.

To achieve high-quality user experience with your e-commerce website, you should observe these:

  • Site Speed: Slow websites experience a very high bounce rate. A high bounce will affect your search rankings negatively as Google will try to serve searchers websites that load faster. To reduce your website load time, it is recommended that you free up content from your server. A common approach would be to use CDN services, and use a more streamlined hosting company.
  • Minimalist Designs: Some of the most successful e-commerce websites use designs that are easy on the eyes. This makes their customers feel more comfortable and less stressed when they spend time shopping on the website. Designs that are built with heavy graphics may look flashy but they are also tiring on the eyes and can lead to fatigue for your users.
  • Shopper-Friendly Fonts: I bet you didn’t know that the fonts of your website also make up as user experience. Tiny fonts make reading a lot stressful especially for customers with sight defects. By implementing a more shopper friendly font on your website, you’re sure to keep your customers relaxed while they shop.

Competitor Research

Basically, you want to pull a list of the most successful competitors in one place. Then invest some time into collecting adequate data about their websites. You’re going to look at what methods and approaches they’re following and decide whether it’s best practice or not.

What you want to be looking at when conducting a competitor research on your competitors’ websites include these:

  • Inbound Links: Your top competitors have acquired a reasonable number of inbound links from other sites. These links are some of the factors that result in their high rankings in Google and other search engines. The goal is to identify the websites and see how you can get a link on these sites or some other sites with similar authority. Check out this guide on how to acquire links to an e-commerce website.
  • Site Structure: Most of the top e-commerce websites get their site structure right. That is why Google and their customers love them. Try to model your e-commerce website after theirs, but stay as unique as possible.
  • Keywords: Keywords are the queries customers type in search engines when they’re about to make a purchase or inquiry. Figure out what the top keywords these websites are ranking for and go for longer versions of these keywords in order to capture a segment of the market they’re yet to cater for.


E-commerce may be a very competitive industry to go into, with Amazon, Ebay, and other multi-billion dollar companies already dominating. However, with a clever approach to optimizing your website for search engine traffic, you will make millions in yet to be tapped areas.

Do you have other tips on how to use SEO to grow an E-commerce website? Let me know in the comment.


Featured Image Credit: Joethegoatfarmer.com 

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