E-Commerce SEO Checklist – A Practical Step-By-Step Checklist

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    If you are an online e-commerce startup or even a well-established venture, SEO should be at the top of your priorities. It can help you 10X the speed of your business growth with higher sales and revenue.  

    Do you know more than 43% of organic e-commerce traffic is generated from organic Google search results? But as we know, the greater the prize, the bigger the competition. Less than 1% of Google searchers click on the second page of Google SERP. It is enough to understand the importance of following the right SEO guidelines. 

    In this blog, we will discuss the key steps an e-commerce entrepreneur must follow for his online store venture. 

    Practical Step-By-Step E-Commerce SEO Checklist

    Practical SEO Checklist

    1. SEO Audit

    The first step in taking your e-commerce business towards huge success starts with a complete SEO audit. Here are the key steps you must follow: 

    1.1. Website Health Check

    A healthy website is the foundation for a highly successful e-commerce business. A thorough website health check ensures that your online store is optimized for the best performance and user experience. 

    1.1.1. Performance Evaluation: 

    • Assess Website Speed: Website speed is very critical for e-commerce. Google PageSpeed Insights is one of the best tools you can go for. 
    • Mobile Responsiveness: More than 70% of shoppers use mobile devices. So, it is important to confirm mobile responsiveness for users across various devices. 
    • HTTPS: HTTPS ensures secure browsing. So, verify whether your website is utilizing HTTPS or not. 

    1.1.2. URL Structure Optimization: 

    • URLs: Ensure your URLs are clean and concise, and include relevant keywords where applicable. 
    • Verify Links: As an e-commerce entrepreneur one must always keep an eye on user navigation as it not only hampers user experience but also damages the SEO performance. You should always check for any broken or redirected links present on your website. 

    1.1.3. Technical SEO Elements: 

    • Header Tags: Header tags can help an online store’s SEO performance significantly but only when they are used accurately. You should proofread that the headings are in the right structure and contain your targeted keywords. 
    • Canonical Tags: Duplicate content impacts the overall SEO performance of an online store. So, always validate the correct usage of canonical tags. 
    • Comprehensive Crawl: A comprehensive crawl can help you discover hidden crawl errors easily. 

     

    1.2. Keyword Analysis

    Keywords are the blood cells of a website. It can make or break your business if you are an e-commerce store. That is why selecting the right keywords is the key to a successful e-commerce SEO. An in-depth keyword analysis helps you understand the language your target audience uses and then you can easily align your content accordingly. 

    1.2.1. Identify Target Keywords: 

    • Keyword Selection: Proper research is always the right way to select keywords. You should always choose the keywords that align with your products, industry, and most importantly your target audience. 
    • Tools: To research your keywords properly tools like Google Keyword Planner, SEMrush, or Ahrefs can help you significantly. 

    1.2.2. Competitor Keyword Analysis: 

    • Analyze Competitor Websites: One of the best ways to identify the high-performing keywords in your niche is to observe and assess your competition. 
    • Opportunities: While assessing the competitor websites always look for gaps or potential opportunities where you can cash in. 

    1.2.3. Content Alignment: 

    • Integrate primary and secondary keywords naturally into your product descriptions, category pages, and blog content. 
    • Ensure a balanced and strategic use of keywords for optimal SEO benefits. 

    1.2.4. Long-Tail Keyword Integration: 

    • Incorporate: Long-tail keywords can easily capture specific user queries and optimize the conversion rates at a very high level. 
    • Monitor: You should always monitor the performance of the incorporated long-tail keywords and adjust your strategy accordingly. 

     

    1.3. Content Audit

    You must have heard that content is king. For an ecommerce website content is also a critical tool to generate sales. That is why regular audits and optimization of your content ensure it remains relevant and valuable to both users and search engines. Here’s your checklist for content audit: 

    1.3.1. Quality Assessment: 

    • Evaluate: You should always assess the quality and relevance of the existing content on your e-commerce website. 
    • Update: Outdated information can hurt your website SEO. The best way is to eliminate any outdated content that no longer serves a purpose, or just update them if needed. 

    1.3.2. Heading Tags and Metadata: 

    • Headings: As said earlier proper use of heading tags to structure content logically is critical for your online site’s SEO performance. 
    • Meta Title and Description: Meta title and meta description are directly linked to click-through rates. So, it is suggested to create meta tags and descriptions that interest the users to click on them. 

    1.3.3. Keyword Integration: 

    • Double-Check: Double-check is never a bad option, you can always proofread that target keywords are seamlessly integrated into your content and don’t look forced. 
    • Avoid Keyword Stuffing: Keyword stuffing may help you improve the ranking of your pages for some time, but in the long run, it will always hurt your e-commerce business. That is why it is critical to maintain a natural flow in your product descriptions and blog posts. 

     

    2. On-Page SEO

    The second phase is on-page SEO. Here are the key steps you can follow for your online store’s success: 

    2.1. Title Tags and Meta Descriptions

    Title tags and meta descriptions are two of the key aspects of on-page SEO that directly impact CTR and most importantly search engine rankings. Here’s a how to optimize these elements: 

    2.1.1. Keyword Inclusion: 

    • Relevant Keywords: It is highly important that your title tags and meta descriptions contain the relevant keywords. 
    • Accurately Reflection: Title tags and meta descriptions are meant to accurately reflect the page’s topic and provide a clear value proposition. So, you should create them accordingly. 

    2.1.2. Character Limits: 

    • Character Limits: You must know that there are character limits for both title tags and descriptions. Abide by recommended character limits to prevent truncation in search results. 
    • Concise Language: It is highly recommended to use short and sweet language when you convey valuable information to the users as they don’t like to read longer sentences. 

    2.1.3. Unique Descriptions: 

    • Avoid Duplicacy: Copying title tags and meta descriptions across multiple pages is never a good idea. In the long run, it will surely negatively impact your online store’s SEO. 
    • CTR: When creating title tags and descriptions keep in mind that they must be unique and engaging to encourage users to click. 

    2.1.4. Call-to-Action (CTA): 

    • CTA in Meta: incorporating CTAs in your meta increases the chance of a user clicking through to your website. That is why you must include a compelling call-to-action in your meta descriptions to prompt user engagement. 
    • Sense of Urgency: In e-commerce offers and discounts are very frequent. You can convey a sense of urgency or highlight special offers when applicable. 

     

    2.2. Image Optimization

    Images are also the key aspect of your e-commerce SEO journey. Optimized images can not only improve the user experience of your online store but also play a significant role in improving page loading times and SEO. 

    2.2.1. File Compression: 

    • Compress images: Image compression is a great way to reduce file sizes without compromising on quality of the files. 
    • Tools: You can use online free tools like TinyPNG or JPEGoptim to optimize images for faster loading times. You can also use plugins available on Figma. 

    2.2.2. Alt Text Implementation: 

    • Assign Alt Text: Alt text acts like a special guide for screen-reader software, describing pictures and other non-text stuff. Descriptive alt text to images can help improve accessibility for users with disabilities. It also helps the Google crawlers to assess the images. 
    • Relevant Keywords in Alt Text: The inclusion of relevant or targeted keywords in alt text can contribute to the e-commerce SEO efforts you are putting in on your website. 

    2.2.3. Image Filenames: 

    • Descriptive Filenames: A descriptive filename for images can help reflect the content of the image which will directly contribute to the SEO performance. 
    • Avoid Generic Filenames: Filenames are an area where you can utilize keywords when appropriate. It will also help you improve your SEO. 

    2.2.4. Image Sitemaps: 

    • Submit Image Sitemap: Image sitemaps can help search engines discover the images and index them faster. That is why it is recommended to submit an image sitemap. 
    • Properly Tagged and Categorized: It is very important that the images are rightly tagged and categorized within your sitemap for the search engines to discover and index them. 

     

    2.3. URL Structure

    As said earlier a clean and well-organized URL structure not only helps in user navigation but also plays an important role in search engine rankings.  

    2.3.1. Readability and Relevance: 

    • Easily Readable URLs: URLs must be easily readable and not follow a complex path for better SEO results. That is why you should create easily readable URLs. 
    • Relevant Keywords: We have already discussed the Inclusion of relevant keywords in the URL where applicable. You must ensure the URLs convey the pages’ content and not mislead the users. 

    2.3.2. Avoid Dynamic Parameters: 

    • Dynamic Parameters: Dynamic parameters can make it difficult for both users and search engines to understand. That is why it is recommended to minimize the use of dynamic parameters. 

    2.3.3. Hyphen Separation: 

    • Separate Words: Better readability of URLs is very critical. That is why it is suggested to use hyphens to separate words in URLs. 
    • Avoid Underscores: Underscores can be misinterpreted by search engines and damage the SEO of your online store. 

    2.3.4. Canonicalization: 

    • Implement Canonical Tags: Canonical tags are used to address duplicate content issues and specify the preferred version of a URL. You can opt for these if needed. 
    • Monitor: It is advised to regularly check and address the canonicalization errors on your e-commerce website for better SEO results. 

     

    2.4. Internal Linking

    Internal linking is another critical step for Search Engine Optimization especially for e-commerce businesses. Strategic internal linking improves site navigation, enhances user experience, and distributes link equity across your website.  

    2.4.1. Relevance and Context: 

    • Link to Related Pages: You can offer additional value to the users by adding links to related product pages or content. 
    • Anchor Text: Anchor text plays a key role in internal linking. Always make sure that anchor text is contextually relevant to the linked content. Also, ensure that the anchor text must be relevant to the neighbour content. 

    2.4.2. Hierarchy and Structure: 

    • Establish Hierarchy: You can establish a clear hierarchy in your internal linking structure, to prioritize the most important pages. 
    • Utilize Breadcrumb: Breadcrumb navigation improves user understanding of your e-commerce site structure. 

    2.4.3. Regular Audits: 

    • Conduct Regular Audits: You need to conduct audits of your anchor texts regularly to identify and fix broken or outdated links. 
    • Adjust Internal Linking: You may often need to adjust internal linking strategies based on changes to your website’s content and structure. 

     

    3. Off-Page SEO

    You may have been advised that focusing on on-page is enough to crack the code in e-commerce. But no, that is not the case, you do need of-page SEO as well. 

    3.1. Backlink Analysis:

    Backlinks are highly effective in e-commerce SEO. It directly impacts your website’s authority and SERP rankings. A thorough backlink analysis helps you understand your site’s link profile and strategize for improvement. 

    3.1.1. Identify Quality Backlinks: 

    • Utilize Tools: Tools such as Ahrefs, Moz, or SEMrush are of great help when identifying high-quality backlinks pointing to your site. 
    • Authoritative and Relevant Sources: Backlinks from authoritative and relevant sources within your industry can help you create authority in no time. That is why it is suggested to focus more on the backlinks from these quality sources. 

    3.1.2. Anchor Text Diversity: 

    • Diverse Anchor Text: Just like in on-page SEO, a diverse anchor text distribution for backlinks maintains a natural link profile. 
    • Monitor and Adjust: You must regularly monitor and modify your anchor text strategies to align with forever-evolving SEO best practices. 

    3.1.3. Competitor Backlink Analysis: 

    • Analyze Competitor Backlinks: You can easily identify potential opportunities by analyzing the backlink profiles of your competitors. 
    • Outreach Efforts: You need to reach out to quality websites linking to competitors and also strategize the outreach efforts. 

     

    3.2. Social Media Presence:

    In this era of digitalization if you are not using social media for your e-commerce business then you are surely missing out on huge opportunities.  

    3.2.1. Platform Selection: 

    • Identify and Prioritize: First of all, you need to identify the social media platforms that align with your target audience. And then keep the selected ones in your priority list. 
    • Tailored Content: Each platform has its ways. You can tailor your content to each platform’s strengths and user demographics. 

    3.2.2. Consistent Branding: 

    • Consistent Brand Image: It is important that you maintain a consistent brand image across all social media channels. If you miss a single day, you will surely lose customers. 
    • Brand Identity: Keep in mind that consistency not only means regular posting on the platforms. You must use the same profile picture, cover photo, and bio information to reinforce brand identity. 

    3.2.3. Content Sharing: 

    • Share Engaging Content: A great way to stay trending is to create and post engaging content including product updates, promotions, and industry-related news. 
    • Social Sharing: Social sharing of your e-commerce website’s pages and products can significantly expand your reach. 

    3.2.4. Incorporate Social Sharing Buttons: 

    • Easy Sharing: Allow your customers or users to share your product pages and blog posts by adding social sharing buttons. 
    • Enable Social Proof: One of the great ways to prove authenticity to search engines is to enable social proof. It helps you leverage user-generated content for authenticity. 

     

    Relatable Read:

    E-commerce SEO Strategies for Canadian Online Stores

     

    4. Monitoring

    The final step is to monitor the performance of your website and SEO efforts at regular intervals. You can explore the traffic, sales, conversion rates, and more. You need to check the rankings as well; it will help you understand the next steps to take for your e-commerce venture’s success.  

     

    Token Creative Services – Trusted E-Commerce SEO Partner in Canada

    Looking for proven experience in e-commerce SEO? Look no further than Token Creative Services. We are a leading e-commerce SEO expert in Canada. We can help you drive high traffic, achieve greater heights in sales, and generate your all-time high revenues. Contact us today! 

     

    Conclusion

    The above discussion may have helped you understand the key steps in a successful e-commerce SEO campaign. From SEO audit, on-page, and off-page SEO to monitoring each step has its purpose and without any of them you will not survive the fierce competition in the modern e-commerce industry. 

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