Everyone who has ever had or handled an E-commerce site will know that these are altogether different beasts from the other websites that you see online. Aside from the fact that people can purchase straight off of these sites, these are considered some of the trickiest to optimize. This is due to the fact that these sites have loads of pages that need to be taken care of.
This makes the work of optimizing such a site more challenging. Apart from having so many pages to keep track of, you also need to ensure that each and every page is optimized and properly set-up for use as well as for being crawled. Add to this the fact that, as an e-commerce site, the number of pages that you have will increase because of the addition of new pages that will showcase new products you will be selling.
So, how do you take on such a challenge and what can be done to ensure that your e-commerce site ranks well, and is optimized properly? Here are some things to consider:
Unique content is a must – This may seem like a tall order, what with an e-commerce site usually having about a hundred or so pages to begin with, but we are not saying that you try to create unique content for all your pages in one sitting. Steady as she goes will do the trick. Just make sure that you don’t have any duplicate pages, even if there are similar products. If you have one product in multiple colors, do not create different pages for each, but rather make just one page, and mention the colors in the copy. You can then post one image each of the item in each color to show buyers what they can choose from.
To speed up page loading times, make sure that image sizes are reasonably small – we say reasonably small because when an image has too small a file size, you compromise on the quality of the image. Try to keep the file size to a minimum without compromising on quality, and have a zoom in feature which will give your site visitor the option to view the image in a bigger and clearer version.
Create internal links by creating a similar products lineup for every page – think in terms of how Amazon created their individual pages. Apart from unique content for each item they are selling, which also comes with user reviews and product information from sellers, you will find a list of products at the bottom which are either similar to what you are looking at or are related in some way with the item you are interested in. This is a good way to create internal links, plus also a good way to get people to consider buying more items rather than just the one thing they are looking at.
Do not deactivate and remove pages that carry items out of stock – while this may seem ludicrous, since you won’t be selling any of these at the moment, but the fact of the matter is, these pages have age. Just remember, if you are no longer planning to sell any of these items at all, place a banner over the image or a note by the product name that says it has been phased out or discontinued. You can then add a link to another product that is similar to this, which can help you make a sale.