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Why You Need to Optimise Your Ecommerce Product Pages with These Technical SEO Steps

natalie nash

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SEO for Ecommerce is big business. Competition is fierce, and standing out is all about Page 1 visibility in Google.

Amid the 2020 pandemic, we experienced significant global adoption, and the market was marked by a substantial 46% surge in growth – the highest in over a decade due to the closure of high street retail shops. Since then, the shift to online shopping that emerged during the pandemic has persisted with equal vigor in the post-COVID era.

By 2026, it’s expected that all ecommerce sales within the global market are projected to reach $8.1 trillion, achieving 56% growth from July 2023.

Within the ecommerce space, especially from organic traffic, it’s all about Google.

Currently, as expected, Amazon dominates the space by experiencing 3.16 billion monthly visitors worldwide through its platform. Obviously, this is not for all products (mainly electrical through Amazon) and within different verticals other brands have a higher market share regionally.

However, over the years, Amazon has invested heavily in SEO, UX, and CRO, as do other top 10 market share brands. For example, Google runs over 10,000 tests a year – many people think of Google as just a search engine, but it is a business and makes a lot of its revenue from advertising (i.e., getting brands to buy their products).

Within the ecommerce world, testing, optimisation, and continuous development of customer experiences based on data analysis are paramount. Many times it’s a zero-sum game – you have to be better than your competitors. As an optimisation expert you have a finite number of resources, so you must segment, target, and focus your attention on the impactful areas throughout your website. The good news is that this can be achieved through a variety of initiatives through diagnostic work, strategy, and the development of workflows.

One of the areas that often is left as an afterthought, and are usually template based, are product detail pages (PDP). In layman terms, these pages are your product pages, and they usually contain an image, product name, CTA “buy now” button, delivery details and some product description detailing benefits of use/specifications. On many ecommerce sites PDP pages represent around 50% of the pages indexed, but only 10-15% of the revenue.

The primary factor lies in the fact that these pages are often plagued with fundamental SEO issues. The organic customer journey predominantly commences either via a brand search (homepage) or through a category (PLP) page, initiated by broader search queries. For example, people tend to search for “mens trainers” rather than “Nike air force 1 men’s trainers grey”. The first result would show a PLP, whereas the second would be a PDP. The PDP, although a longer query, has the higher buyer intent and therefore has better conversion potential. Although it’s important to focus on optimising both, the PDP often has better opportunity to make quick wins and gain higher organic revenue.

How can this be achieved through adopting a multi-layered technical SEO approach?

Technical SEO plays a significant role in shaping the impact of PDP’s because it guarantees smooth accessibility, effective indexing, and user-centric design. Technical SEO improvements pave the way for product pages to not only achieve better search engine rankings, but to draw in organic traffic and achieve heightened conversion rates.

Let’s delve into what these technical elements you need to incorporate are and how you can optimise them on your product pages:

Ensure good website speed

Google considers website speed a crucial ranking factor, and faster websites generally rank higher in search engine results. The faster the website speed, the quicker the website loads for users to interact with to purchase your products. Slow websites can significantly impact eCommerce product pages’ performance, as they can lead to high bounce rates and deter potential customers from engaging with the website. Website speed is also a search compliance issue around core web vitals (CWV) aligned towards page experience.

What is a good website speed?

To ensure website speed is fast, consider implementing optimisation measures such as:
– Compressing images and multimedia
– Reducing the number of HTTP requests
– Leveraging browser caching
– Minimising server response times
– Using content delivery networks (CDNs)
– Employing efficient coding practices
Ensure you conduct regular performance monitoring and remove any unnecessary plugins or scripts that contribute to maintaining a swift and seamless shopping experience for customers.

It’s important to note that the majority of ecommerce sites are dependent on JavaScript and CSS. If they are, these need to be reviewed as they are likely <head> scripts blocking the page rendering.

Add structured data markup

Adding structured data (Schema.org markup) to your product pages provides search engines with additional context about your products. To do this, you need to identify relevant attributes like product name, price, availability, reviews, and then embed the structured data using JSON-LD or other supported formats within the page’s HTML code. This can lead to rich snippets in search results, improving your product visibility significantly. Your listing will become more appealing to users who are specifically searching for your product with an intent to purchase.

Make sure you also build PLP Schema for the main category page to notify Google of the relationship. Also, something you can explore is for the “similar” and “recommended products” have these as significant links within the Schema to add context around the product relationships.

Include optimised tags, meta data, and URLs

By optimising your tags, metadata, and URLs, you’re providing search engines with further rich information about the website’s content. This includes the website’s title, description, and keywords. When we’re talking about optimising, this means ensuring you describe the product accurately and clearly, describe what you offer, and include relevant keywords to make it easier for potential customers to find your website.

Make sure to front load your keywords and the terms your customers rank highly when buying a product – i.e., in certain sectors colour is a higher consideration than material.

Consider mobile responsiveness

With the increasing use of mobile devices, always incorporate responsive design across multiple devices to ensure it’s easy to navigate no matter what device the customer is using. A mobile-responsive website will adjust its layout and content to fit the user’s screen size, making it easier to use on a mobile device, but you should always consider how the contents of the page look on a mobile when designing or optimising your product pages.

Make sure the mobile experience matches the desktop – as often the mobile is a secondary design idea and as Google indexes/ranks sites based on mobile the mobile must be prioritised.

Consider crawlability, indexability, and canonical tags

Having multiple pages with similar or identical content is common for eCommerce websites, like product variations or different sorting options. Canonical tags help indicate the preferred version of a page to search engines, preventing duplicate content issues and ensuring that the right page is ranked.

Search engines use web crawlers to index your website’s pages. Technical SEO ensures that these crawlers can easily access and understand your product pages. Proper use of XML sitemaps, robots.txt files, and canonical tags helps search engines understand your page hierarchy.

Remember, when using canonicals make sure to not include them in linkable assets (navigation, breadcrumbs, footer, or contextual content). These pages are nonindexed and driving equity to them will not have any SEO benefit (can also give Google signals to index them).

Organise your site structure and navigation

A well-organised site structure and easy-to-use navigation also contribute to a better user experience. This can lead to increased time spent on your site and higher chances of conversion.

Make sure to correctly categorise your main/subcategories to give topic level authority to Google that your site is the best result to show for the targeted keywords. Using taxonomy to cluster pages around one theme ensures a higher-ranking site – signalling to Google you have full topic coverage.

Include internal linking

Always ensure you’re adding relevant internal links between product pages, category pages, and other relevant content to help distribute link equity. This encourages search engines to crawl and index your pages more effectively. It also improves user navigation within your website.

The trick is to make sure the links add value to the customer journey (not just placed for SEO sake) and are related sub-topics of a page with a clear anchor text around the page being linked to. Never use generic “find out more” and “click here”. There is no link context for Google.

Monitor for technical errors and issues

Regularly monitor your site for technical issues like broken links, 404 errors, server errors, and crawl errors as these can negatively impact your eCommerce website. By fixing these issues promptly, you’re ensuring the user has an enhanced experience, you’re not losing any potential customers, and you’re preventing any negative impacts on your SEO efforts.

For large ecommerce sites you should invest in daily technical monitoring (little warden or content king) as these tools allow you to have an “always on” technical awareness, so if a high value page suddenly becomes a 404 error, the DNS redirects corrupt, or the server drops out with a 500 error – then these tools notify you. This level of monitoring is critical as any sudden issue can cost a business £10,000 each day it’s not fixed. More importantly, unless you have a dedicated SEO person with access to these tool suites monitoring the account, then these issues will go unnoticed.

In conclusion, technical SEO is essential for optimising eCommerce product pages. It ensures that your pages are accessible, indexable, and user-friendly, leading to improved search engine rankings, increased organic traffic, and higher conversion rates. By implementing technical SEO best practices, you can provide both search engines and users with a positive experience on your eCommerce website and provide your target audience with exactly what they need.

At POLARIS, we offer professional SEO services in London. We can help you generate sales and leads for your business with our ecommerce SEO services. Leveraging our proficient team of SEO managers, we propel traffic and sales through targeted ecommerce SEO initiatives for our valued clients. You can trust our technical seo services to analyse all aspects of your website and digital SEO profile, it’s our responsibility to present every possible technical opportunity to improve the health, accessibility, and performance of your business’ SEO.

If you would like to find out more about our technical SEO agency, please get in touch to speak with one of our experts about your project today for a free account audit. Send us an email at info@polarisagency.co.uk.

 

 

Natalie specialises in collaborating with clients to ensure they’re connecting with their target audience through content, whether that’s optimising on-page and off-page content or understanding the audience’s needs, pain points, and behaviour to create personable and effective campaigns and strategies that aim to make client’s stand out from the crowd.

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