Beginner’s Guide To Improve SEO On eCommerce Website

Improving SEO on eCommerce is a little different than SEO for general websites. As there are a lot of products, SEO on eCommerce will be more focus on on-page SEO as each product should be optimized. There are tons of work to do to improve the SEO. But for the beginning, you can do these steps on your own website without being too technical.

Do Keyword Research

The basic thing in SEO is keywords. Identify keywords of your products. You can also search keywords for your brand. Focus on what keyword that will be used by people who intend to buy your product. It can be simple like ‘winter clothes’ or more detailed like ‘buy brown leather coat for winter’. Moreover, there are many keyword tools you can use. As a starter, you can try Google Keyword Planner.

Remember to determine keywords that have high volume search, and are likely to convert web visitors into customers. If possible try to find the one that will rank your eCommerce website faster. You can start with a keyword that can be a solution to a problem.

Focus On Detailing Title & Content

Now that you have determined keyword for your brand and products, implement those on your content. Time to use your keywords in sentences!

Site Title and Tagline

Site title and tagline are really helpful to the SEO. After writing your brand name as the site title, describe your brand shortly with your brand main keyword as a tagline. For example, we input ‘Women’s Boho Clothing’ as the search queries.

search queries SEO ecommerceThe site tagline of the first ones showing up contains the keyword. They don’t merely write their brand names. They give the main keyword of their brand description; boho clothing for women. Also, input the meta description of your site that will show on the search results.

Don’t forget to make the homepage layout tailored to your brand personality.

Product Name & Description

The common mistakes eCommerce website done is copying manufacturers’ description. Sometimes if the product is self-made, the e-commerce owners don’t bother to write any useful information other than the material used. Don’t copy and paste the description, write your own well. Make it useful to your customers as a thorough description. Write the main selling point first then describe the other information after.

Your product name should also include the category. To illustrate, if you sell a jacket, include the word ‘jacket’ in the product name. Jacket is the common search term so that including it in the product name can improve the SEO. Therefore, when someone searches for a ‘jacket’, your product has the chance to show up in the search result.

Moreover, input the alt text for the product images. The image name file and alt file should be a benefit to your SEO. Instead of IMG001 with blank alt text, use the product keyword as the name of the image and the content of alt text.

Blog Articles

If you keep questioning why eCommerce still need a blog, this is why. Besides sharing information about the products, a blog can be your tool to improve SEO on your store. You can create many articles related to your products and include the specific keywords.  Thus, it can build more engagement with your existing customers and attract potential buyers.

Include Customers’ Reviews

Product reviews from your customers are really helpful to enrich the keyword of your products. This will also gain trust for your potential buyers.

Bonus: Be Active on Social Media

Yes, social media can improve SEO on eCommerce website of yours. You can share your blog articles or promote your new arrival products to build social links to your website.  Show them how your product is what they need without being too salesy.

Manage Site Structure

If you’re using WordPress/WooCommerce, then you already have your website structured well. Site structure helps the search engine bots to crawl your eCommerce website effectively.

Organize Navigation Menu

Your navigation menu must be easy to understand and follow. To make it a simple, display the product category as the main menu. If you sell products for men and women, you can start using them as the main category in the navigation menu.

Use Breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs make easier to navigate for customers rather than repeating the steps taken before. It will also help the search engine bots to find their way back to the homepage. Therefore, breadcrumbs are effective to improve SEO on eCommerce stores.

Avoid 404 Pages

Having too many error 404 pages won’t get you anywhere. When your product is out of stock/discontinued, it’s better to leave it until restocked or redirect to the product category page. Place a sign-up form so that customers can be notified when the product is back in stock. If you still think 404 page is better, customize the page such as displaying related items so that your customers won’t only see an error message.

Protect Your Website

A secure website can help you to rank better in the search results. Therefore it’s necessary to implement SSL for your website. You can identify it by looking at the address bar, where green lock appears and your website URL begins with https://. It’s not only for improving SEO, but also for securing transactional activities and personal customers data. Your customers won’t continue to proceed their checkout if your website isn’t safe. If you can’t get the SSL certificate, you can try to use third-party service to handle the payment process.

Optimize Website Speed

Whether it’s about improving SEO on eCommerce website or usual blog, the basic thing you need to do is making your website load fast. Before we’re going any further, make sure that your website is quick to load. If your website loads more than 3 seconds, you should try to make it faster.

Ensure It’s Mobile-Friendly

In addition to having a responsive design, your mobile site should deliver the usability for the user too. If you use a WordPress theme, check if it allows you to customize the mobile version of your website.

If you use Sobari as your WooCommerce theme, this aspect is already taken care of. You can customize the look of mobile version so that you can improve usability as well. Sobari has also implement rich snippets to improve your SEO. The rich snippets will display additional information such as star review and price of your product in the search engine results.

 

Now that you have set up the basic things, you can continue to learn the next steps such as building backlinks and canonicalize URL. For the technical SEO, you can ask a developer to do it for you instead. Therefore, this basic guide will take your eCommerce website to be ready for another SEO improvement.

Improve eCommerce Search Feature for a Better Customer Experience

Have you seen an eCommerce site that doesn’t have a search feature? You might find it displeasing if a web store doesn’t let you search for a product you need. According to eConsultancy in 2012, 30% of visitors will use the eCommerce search feature when they visit the web store. That study makes sense because people demand to get anything fast in this digital era.

Furthermore, if you have an eCommerce site, especially with lots of products, making your customers search the shop pages thoroughly to find a product is absolutely ridiculous. You need to provide a search feature so that your customers don’t have to waste their time. Now, let’s learn how to optimize the eCommerce search feature that gives your customers a better experience when shopping in your web store.

Make the Search Bar Clearly Visible

search barWhen customers land on your web store for the first time, they should spot the search bar shortly. Most eCommerce sites place the search bar on the header; where people can instantly see it when they arrive at the site. Make the search bar quickly recognizable and put it on the top of your site. Also, make sure that customers can find the search bar on every page.

Don’t hide the search bar from the sight of your customers by placing it outside the header. The customers usually have a particular product in mind they want to buy. If they can’t see the search bar on your site, they might leave your site immediately and find other stores where they can find the product easier.

Apply Various Search Queries

Don’t limit the search query only by the name of the product as your customers might search a product by its attribute. Make it possible to look for a product by product type, description, color variation, brand, and SKU code. This way, when your customers don’t remember the name of the product, they can use other queries to find what they’re looking for.

Pay attention to the synonym and symbol of the search query too. If you list your product as ‘t-shirt’, make it discoverable even though the customers search for a ‘tshirt’ or ‘tee shirt’.

Provide Relevant Results

Imagine if you were looking for red shoes on a web store, the search result gave you nothing related such as displaying a red bag. You would be annoyed as you had searched for a specific thing, but other irrelevant results still came up. Don’t make your customers feel that way.

Ensure the search results on your site are what your customers expect to find. In addition, set your search feature to display relevant results although the customers misspell the keyword. They will thank you to not make them retype the query.

Use Auto-Suggestion

Auto-suggestion can save your customers’ time. It guides your customers to find what they need faster. Auto-suggestion also minimizes the search error like misspelled keyword that happens often. Bottom line, you can reduce the number of steps your customers take in searching products.

Other than auto-suggestion for the search query, you can implement instant result in your search feature.  As the customers start typing the search query, the result will display suggested products instantly.

Give Options to Narrow the Result

upscale ecommerce search feature 2Allow the customers to narrow the results before they start searching. Most eCommerce sites have done it by providing category options to choose in the search bar. You can also provide product filter to narrow the search such filter by price or filter by colors. Besides filters, the option to sort products is useful on the result page to help the customers locate the desired product.

In case the product is not available when your customers narrow it down, you can display alternative products. Of course, the alternative product should be based on what have been searched by them.

 

eCommerce search feature is fundamental as it helps the customers to find relevant products quickly and easily. The search feature should be simple and easy-to-use, but give exactly what the customers want. Thus, it’s necessary to optimize the search feature for improving the customer experience, which can also result in increasing the conversion.

Have you optimized the eCommerce search feature on your site? What do you think as the important thing to have in the feature? Let me hear your thought on the comment section 🙂

The Basic Guide of eCommerce Offers To Drive Your Revenue

A marketing strategy for eCommerce that you’re still afraid to try is using offers. It’s acceptable that you’re not really interested in using offers because you don’t want to harm your eCommerce business. But if you do it in the right way, eCommerce offers can drive revenue to your business and help you to keep the loyal customers.

To Offer or Not To Offer

Before you jump in right in, surely you have to consider the pros and cons of using offers to promote your eCommerce website. Note that the eCommerce offers can be a discount, coupon, free gift, or free shipping.

Pros

  • Better marketing strategy

Who doesn’t love discount? Your offers may attract your potential customers, even attract new visitors to your website and get to know more about your business.

  • Increase conversion

If done properly, your promotion makes you easier in selling your products

  • Clear the old stock

The quick way to unload your inventory is selling it with an offer.

  • Boost customer loyalty

If your customers are satisfied when getting your product before, getting it again with special offers surely will keep them to come back.

  • Drive more traffic

The more people visit your eCommerce website, the more they know about your brand. Offers let you increasing brand awareness and the traffic as well.

Cons

  • Attract unloyal customers

Beside your loyal customers, there’s also a chance that you will have customers who won’t buy your product unless there’s a sale for it.

  • Decrease profit

It’s unavoidable when you give offers. To ensure that you’re killing your business, take a look at your margin first before deciding to try giving offers

  • Devalue your brand

If you’re not careful in giving offers, your brand will be in danger. For example, the quality of your product will be questioned as you rarely sell it on the normal price.

  • Start a price war

As there are so many eCommerce stores out there, having special offers can lead you to a price war because your competitors can also have one. However, you should avoid a price war. It’s not worth it to hurt your brand and margin just for short-term benefit.

Type of Offers

Here are the basic and simple types of offering you can try to use for your eCommerce offers:

First-Time Shopping Offer

Successfully having someone to visit your eCommerce website for the first time doesn’t mean your work ends here. Getting them to make a purchase is tougher. That’s why you should make a great start by giving a discount for their first purchase.

Volume/Cart Size Offer

Another popular method you’re likely to see is volume or cart size offer. The offer can be free shipping or discount with minimum purchase. It can help your upselling or cross-selling tactic too.

Email Subscription Offer

Like the first-time offer, you can give an offer for people to subscribe your newsletter. With this type of offer, not only conversion will be increased, but you can also get their email address to build your newsletter list.

Holiday Offer

It’s the well-known time to get new customers and bring back your past customers! You can join the other eCommerce websites to create a special offer on holiday seasons such as Black Friday and Christmas.

Retargeting Offer

You can use offers to get your previous customers return back to your website. It’s easier to keep your old customers than trying to bait new ones. Furthermore, you can also bring back those who abandon their shopping cart to continue their checkout on your website.

How To Use Offers

  • Make them know what you’re offering. Place the announcement at where people will see, such as using promo banner in Upscale.
  • Don’t make offers for your signature or popular products. Use it for the product that won’t sell instead.
  • Give expiry date to create the sense of urgency. Limited time offer will make the offer much more effective for your business and not hurt your brand.
  • If you choose to give coupon code, don’t make it too hard for customers to type. FALL17 is better than F56HB7, right?
  • Priority your loyal customers to receive the offers. Send them an email with a coupon code that they will happily use when buying your products again.
  • Determine the length of time to target the cart abandoners with your offer. For the first try, you can target them 24 hours after they abandoned their cart.

 

If you’re using WooCommerce as your eCommerce platform, you can easily offer free shipping and create coupon codes for discounting product or cart size offer. Thus, if you need more, our WooCommerce-based theme Upscale has provided everything for the basic strategy of your eCommerce offers such as sale page and newsletter pop-up.

What type of offers did you try to use and what work best for your eCommerce business? Tell us your experience in using offers in the comment section 🙂

Amazing Persuasion Technique on eCommerce Website

What really persuade you to make a decision in shopping? Most of the time you don’t realize it at all. It’s the same with your customers. It’s not only the layout of your website or the products that persuade people to make a purchase. In fact, many elements in the website have a persuasive role. Let’s learn how those elements can improve persuasion on eCommerce site of yours.

Utilize the power of scarcity

What will you do when the product you want is on sale until tomorrow? Or how if the product only has 5 stocks left? Most likely you will put that product in your cart immediately. Reduce the procrastination to buy the product by:

  • Using countdown timer or time reminder for special deals
  • Highlighting the short supply of a product

Reciprocate for the conversion

Return the favors to your customers who make a purchase! Your little gift surely makes them happy to buy something from your store. You may give them:

  • Free shipping and/or free return
  • Discount or promo code for newsletter signup

Use social proof to kill hesitation

Social proof also has a role in people’s decision. Before your potential customers finally click that add-to-cart button, they will seek others’ experiences on using the product. Here are a few ways to ensure them that they make a good decision to buy the product:

  • Display review from other customers
  • Show recommended or popular items
  • Enable social shares and show the share counts if possible

Keep the customers and their commitments

Small things you do allow you to receive a commitment from your potential customers. This commitment can lead your potential customers to buy. After that, they can also turn into returning customers. For example, asking to follow your brand’s social account can generate a conversion in the future, as the posts may persuade the followers to make a purchase. Other ways to gain their commitment are:

  • Newsletter signup
  • Wishlist
  • Creating account, recommended being done after the first checkout

Build the authority of your brand

Due to the high chance to fall for a scam when shopping online, you need to reassure your potential customers that your brand is not. You need to gain their trust so that they will gladly make a purchase on your eCommerce site. What you can do:

  • Show your and your brand’s profiles (about me section)
  • Displaying security certificates of your site
  • Creating blog section for SEO optimized

Make them notice your interesting offer

Sometimes you can’t see what you’re searching for although it’s right in front of you. Make sure it won’t happen to your customer by:

  • Selling the related item on the checkout page
  • Displaying promotional banner to highlight your value offers

Make your product more ‘real’

Another doubt that arises when buying something online is that people don’t have any idea how exactly the product is. That’s why some people still prefer to buy from a physical store. You can ensure people about your product by writing the detailed description along with:

  • High-quality product photos
  • Product video; so they can have an idea how it is in use

 

Thus, these invisible forces are effective to persuade your potential customers into buying. Note that you shouldn’t abuse them as your brand’s reputation will be ruined if they become too obvious.

Upscale, our new-released WooCommerce WordPress theme, is already packed with those persuasion methods you need, in a stylish and elegant layout. Promo banner, product videos, everything you need can be done by installing Upscale!

If you have any thoughts or questions about the persuasiveness in eCommerce site, please leave a comment below 🙂

4 Tips for Creating eCommerce Product Image That Sells

Product images are one of the essential parts of an eCommerce website. It is the important element that provides further information about the product and makes your eCommerce more trusted. Therefore, displaying high-quality product image is a must for your eCommerce website. If it’s in your budget, you can have it done by hiring the pro. But it’s also possible for you to take the matters from the production until optimization.

Produce High-Quality Product Image

  • Choose right camera and lighting

To produce a good image, then you need a basic equipment. Search for the best camera and lighting equipment you can afford. If you think your smartphone camera is capable for this job, then go for it. For the lighting, try to get natural lighting as much as possible and avoid to use flash. You can enhance the images later through editing.

  • Use white background

You can never go wrong with white. White background is effective to draw attention to the product and give a clean and professional look. Use white backdrop when taking photos to simplify your work in editing after. Of course, you can use background other than plain white, just remember that the background you choose should emphasize the product.

  • Show zoom details

Make sure you take the photo in high resolution that carries enough the details of the product. It’s important to let shoppers zoom in the images to get a further impression of the product. Besides, there’s no point in optimizing low-quality images later.

  • Provide alternative views and angles

As the shoppers can’t see and touch the product directly, it is the basic to provide visualization. Show the product in multiple angles. Mostly the main images to display is the front view of the product, then include the angle from above, below, behind, the side. If the product has any unique features, textures, or patterns, provide the close-up shot of it too. Also show the images of your product in use.

If you have the product in different colors, then show it as the product images. This way shoppers can have the idea how the product looks in different colors rather than only assuming from the color swatches, or worst, from the color list.

  • Be consistent

Create consistent product image to ensure that they all will look good together. The consistency will create a smooth, clean-looking browsing experience when viewed from the shop page. The key is to take photos of your products in the same style, whether from the same angles, background, or effect.

Use the Right Format and Dimensions

There are three main formats of the image file used on the web, which are JPEG/JPG, PNG, and GIF.

  • JPEG – also known as JPG, is the most used format for the image on the web. It is also the popular format for product images. You can use JPEG format to get smaller file size without compromising image quality.
  • PNG – typically has larger file size than the JPEG format. This format is great for maintaining image quality. You can also have a transparent background for the image.
  • GIF – has the smaller file size than JPEG and PNG format. It lets you create simple animation from moving images.

Basically, the majority of image file format used are JPEG and PNG, while GIF is used when you need to create animated image. You can check the cheat sheet of image file format from HubSpot for more explanation.

Next, you need to adjust the image size to suit your page layout. Find out the maximum pixel dimensions you need and make it supporting retina display. For example, if the image aspect ratio on the product page is 2:3, then the product image should be cropped into the same ratio if it’s not the same yet. If the maximum dimensions you need is 600 x 900 px, then you should make it 1200 x 1800 px for retina display support.

Optimize For Load Time

Large file of image size will slow down the loading time of your website. Slow website then will lead you to unhappy shoppers and you will lose conversion. Avoid this issue by reducing file size. If you edit the images in Photoshop, you can use ‘Save For Web’ tool, but if you don’t, you can use other compression tools. There are many options to choose out there, but my choice goes to JPEGmini for web-based tools and EWWW Image Optimizer or TinyPNG for the plugins. If you decide to use the JPEG format, check your images again after compression to ensure if they are still crisp.

Optimize For SEO

  • Descriptive file name

Don’t be lazy to rename your product image file. Give it a descriptive, keyword-rich file name that helps the search engines to classify and index your images. For instance, when someone searches for the blue sweater which you sell, he/she won’t search for ‘DCIM000589’ (the original file name), but they will use the keyword ‘blue sweater’. It will be helpful if you rename the file as ‘yourbrand-blue-sweater’.

  • Alt text

When uploading the product image, don’t abandon the alt text. Alt text is the text alternative when a browser fails to render the image. Fill in the descriptive keyword and make it relevant to the image and image file name. You can try ‘front view of blue sweater from your brand’. Keep it simple and don’t overdo it.

 

Having great product image is necessary for your brand because no shoppers would like to see bad product photo or even no photo at all. Display it along with the informative text and stunning page layout for better product presentation and generating more conversions.

What about the product images of your eCommerce website? Did you follow the best practices? Tell us your experience in the comment below 🙂

6 Best Practices To Follow In Writing Product Description

Product description on your eCommerce website should create a good first impression. It becomes the salesperson for potential customers when they take a look at your product. Most eCommerce sites don’t really concern in writing product description. Whereas, product description is one of the essential parts of the eCommerce success. If you make the right copy, your product description can compel people to hit that ‘Add to Cart’ or ‘Buy Now’ button.

Make It Descriptive and Educative

It’s the basic but still neglected by many. The description should at least inform what your potential buyers mostly want to know. It should help your customer to feel, taste, smell, and see the product. For instance, if you sell a perfume, you need to describe the smell of it with the sensory words to help the customers imagine the scent. Think about the product description you like when shopping online.

Moreover, you can use the 5W+1H method to help you in writing the description.

  • What is the product exactly? What are the basic details of the product?
  • Who is this product for? Does someone with specific interest need it?
  • Where will the customer use the product? Is there a special place to use it?
  • When will the customer use the product? Is it a seasonal item?
  • Why the customer need the product? Why is it better than the others?
  • How does the product work? Can it solve the problem?

Highlight the Benefits

The truth is people don’t buy a product, but the experience in it. Learn the benefits you can get from each feature then use it on the copy. Let them know straightly why they need to buy your product and how it will make their lives better. You can also tell a story focusing on the benefits to reel the potential buyers in.

Easy to Scan, Easy to Read

As much as you want to explain clearly, don’t ever make the description that’s too long. Unless your customer needs a long copy, keep it short and simple. List the features and benefits in the bullet point format to make it more effective. Take a look at the format such as the font size and don’t forget to check if it looks good on the page layout.

Speak Like Your Ideal Customers

Using the right tone in writing product description is a great way to engage your ideal customers. Think of who will use your product and what tone they use. The tone you choose for selling baby product and selling women clothing obviously will be different. Furthermore, you can borrow the language your customers use when they write a review.

Avoid Passive Voice

Speak to your potential buyer directly is better and easier to understand. In fact, using verbs can make the copy more compelling than the adjective. It can also get to the point quickly and more straightforward to persuade the customer. You don’t need to make things complicated by using passive voice.

Proofread After Writing Product Description

A small mistake on the product description can affect your brand as unorganized and careless, which is the conversion killer. Make sure to proofread the writing before you put it online. Check the spelling, grammar, and if there’s any missing detail of the product. Put yourself as the customer then see if they can read it pleasantly and find the information they need.

 

Writing product description should not only focus on making sales, but it should focus on your target customers. The copy should give what they need, both the benefit and the experience they will get. It might take you some time to write a good one, but it will be worth it for the conversion rates.

How do you write product description on your eCommerce site? Do you have any tips in writing an effective copy? Share it on the comment 🙂

4 Easy Steps to Update Theme and Plugins

WordPress has always updated their version for better changes, so has our themes. To make your site run smoothly with the latest version, you need to update theme and plugins. But in the process, some of you still experience difficulties. Here’s the steps you can follow! Continue reading “4 Easy Steps to Update Theme and Plugins”