Ultimate Ecommerce SEO Guide For Beginners: How To Start Selling Smart

Ultimate Ecommerce SEO Guide For Beginners_ How To Start Selling Smart

Beginning your journey into eCommerce and seeking a solid SEO foundation? This comprehensive guide illuminates the path to increasing your store’s search engine visibility and traffic. Grasp the basics of ‘ecommerce SEO for beginners’ and discover the significant impact it will have on your online success. Without delving into the technical deep end, we provide clear, manageable steps to kickstart your SEO strategy and stay ahead of the competition. Get ready to turn searches into sales.

Key Takeaways

  • Ecommerce SEO improves online store visibility, attracts organic traffic, and offers a higher ROI than paid advertising, demanding regular strategy updates due to the dynamic nature of SEO.
  • Successful ecommerce SEO encompasses keyword research, well-planned site architecture, on-page optimization, and technical SEO maintenance, and is increasingly tied to quality content marketing strategies.
  • Utilizing tools like Google Search Console, Semrush, and Ahrefs is essential for monitoring performance, conducting keyword and competitor analysis, and addressing SEO issues to enhance ecommerce SEO effectiveness.

Understanding Ecommerce SEO: The Basics

Ecommerce SEO store with products displayed

Ecommerce SEO is a strategic approach that aims to:

  • Increase an online store’s visibility on search engines through an effective ecommerce SEO campaign
  • Attract more organic traffic
  • Improve a brand’s image
  • Boost brand loyalty
  • Allow stores to outperform competitors

However, achieving stable keyword rankings can be challenging due to the continuously evolving nature of SEO, which requires frequent updates to strategies.

The beauty of ecommerce SEO is its cost-effectiveness. Unlike paid advertising methods that can drain your marketing budget quickly, ecommerce SEO offers a higher return on investment. What’s more, ecommerce SEO strategies can be data-driven, enabling stores to measure, optimize, and refine their approach for enhanced performance and conversions.

But you might be wondering, what exactly is ecommerce SEO and why is it so significant for online stores? Let’s explore more.

What is Ecommerce SEO?

Ecommerce SEO involves optimising the search engine optimisation of an online store to improve the visibility of its web pages and product listings in search engine results pages (SERPs). This search engine optimisation process includes making strategic changes to increase the store’s rankings in search engine results.

This search engine optimisation differs from traditional SEO, which focuses on content visibility to garner readership rather than drive sales. With higher visibility in search results, e-commerce sites can attract more potential customers looking for products online.

The key goals of e-commerce SEO include ensuring product pages rank among the top search results on the first page of search engines and attracting traffic from visitors with queries relevant to the products and brand. To realize these goals, common e-commerce SEO practices involve updating a website to align with search engine best practices and refining content to reflect the searches of potential customers.

Essentially, ecommerce SEO targets the optimization of your category page and online store to facilitate search engines in crawling, indexing, and ranking your product pages favourably in the search results. But, you may ask, why does this matter?

Why Ecommerce SEO Matters

Think about the last time you searched for a product online. Did you click on the first few search results or did you navigate to the second page of the search results? Most likely, you chose from the first few options. Only 0.63% of users click on second-page results in search traffic. This is why higher search engine visibility is critical for ecommerce stores.

Securing top positions in search results offers several benefits:

  • Gains more clicks
  • Establishes greater trust with users compared to paid search results
  • Helps ecommerce sites reach their target audience without the added expense of paid ads, which is particularly beneficial for new customer acquisition.

The significance of ecommerce SEO is underscored by the fact that:

  • Organic search drives over half of all website traffic
  • Users specifically searching for products or services are more likely to convert
  • SEO is a powerful tool for boosting sales

Moreover, considering that 44% of individuals initiate their online shopping journey with a Google search, the role of ecommerce SEO in capturing this audience is clear.

Essential Ecommerce SEO Components

Optimizing product images for ecommerce SEO

Ecommerce SEO isn’t a one-size-fits-all strategy. It’s a complex process that involves multiple components. From keyword research and site architecture to on-page optimization and technical SEO, each aspect plays a crucial role in the overall success of your ecommerce SEO strategy.

Keyword research guides SEO tasks such as search engine optimization and results pages such as optimizing product and category pages and finding product-focused keywords and more descriptive terms for products. Ensuring an optimized site architecture enhances both SEO and user experience by making navigation to any product from the homepage easy.

Regularly auditing the search engine results pages and the whole site structure for duplicate content and technical SEO issues is also vital to maintaining high search rankings.

Let’s dissect these components to better grasp how each one contributes to the success of your ecommerce SEO strategy.

Keyword Research

In the realm of SEO, keywords are the bridge that connects users’ search queries to your website. They are essential for optimizing product titles, descriptions, meta descriptions, image attributes, and subheadlines, ensuring pages align with user expectations. In ecommerce SEO, finding relevant keywords involves analyzing keyword search volume to find keywords that indicate interest and relevance for product pages or category pages, as well as considering customers and products to determine which relevant keywords to rank for.

website design banner

To bolster your keyword research, several tools are available:

  • Google autocomplete
  • Amazon suggestions
  • Wikipedia
  • Advanced tools like Semrush and Ahrefs

These tools can uncover long-tail keywords – longer, more specific keyword phrases or informational, keyword ideas, keywords that visitors are more likely to use when they’re closer to making a purchase or when using voice search. With the help of keyword ideas, you can further refine your search engine optimization strategy.

Alongside search volume, it’s vital to analyze search terms for user intent, including commercial investigation and readiness to buy. This helps you pick the right keywords for both informational and commercial purposes, setting the stage for a successful ecommerce SEO strategy. Ecommerce keyword research and ecommerce keyword research and keyword research tool and tool play a crucial role in this process.

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Site Architecture and Navigation

The architecture of your ecommerce site is like the blueprint of a building. It determines how easily users and search engines can navigate the pages on your site, including ecommerce websites. A well-organized site architecture ensures that no page is more than three clicks away from any other, which is paramount for user experience and search engine rankings.

Strategic, internal links and links:

  • Connects authoritative pages to high-priority product and category pages
  • Supports user navigation
  • Distributes page authority
  • Helps link to related products and blog articles using appropriate anchor text with targeted keywords.

However, while building a solid site architecture, it’s important to avoid orphan pages and broken links. These can undermine your SEO efforts and disrupt the user experience. Ensuring that all products are accessible with no more than three clicks from the homepage is a crucial navigational goal for ecommerce sites.

On-Page Optimization

On-page optimization is the process of optimizing individual web pages to earn higher rankings and attract more relevant traffic in search engines. This involves creating unique products and categories, on-page SEO, and meta descriptions for each item and category on-page SEO to enhance SEO and persuade users to click. These descriptions, coupled primary keywords and with effective keyword targeting, are key to on-page optimization.

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Google must accurately understand the content on each page to rank it appropriately, making on-page SEO elements like the title tag meta description, tags, and meta descriptions vital for visibility in search results. With a well-crafted title tag and meta description on the category page, you can influence user behavior, by strategically incorporating target keywords.

In addition to informational keywords and title tags, images in blog posts should have optimized alt attributes to serve as text alternatives and provide additional SEO value. Properly labeled image file names, title tags, and alt attributes can enhance the likelihood of images appearing in search engines like Google +’s Image Search, driving more traffic to the ecommerce site.

Technical SEO

While keyword research, site architecture, and on-page optimization are crucial, they only form part of the ecommerce SEO equation. Technical SEO is another critical component, focusing on improving site aspects that affect the visibility of your website on search engines.

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Site and page speed, is a critical factor for ecommerce SEO, as a slow website can deter customers and adversely affect sales. Improved site speed not only enhances the user experience but also contributes to better search engine rankings. Ensuring mobile responsiveness page speed is another part of technical SEO clean-up, vital for the website to perform well on mobile devices.

Regularly auditing your site for duplicate content and technical SEO issues is also crucial. Tools like Ahrefs’ Site Audit feature and search engines like Google and Search Console can help identify issues that could hinder search engine crawling and impact site speed and mobile responsiveness.

Boosting Your Ecommerce SEO with Content Marketing

Incorporating infographics for content marketing in ecommerce SEO

Content marketing is a fundamental aspect of ecommerce SEO. It can contribute to ranking for a wider range of keywords, driving more site traffic, and assisting in building links to enhance domain authority. High-quality content is becoming crucial due to the evolving nature of search engine algorithms, merging the objectives of SEO and content marketing.

Content marketing extends beyond just generating sales; it involves providing value to the audience, which forms trust and improves SEO outcomes. To engage customers effectively, ecommerce content should lead users towards a clear action through strong calls-to-action (CTAs) and interactive elements such as quizzes and polls.

Infographics, listicles, and screenshots enhance the appeal and readability of ecommerce content, leading to more effective user engagement. Creating valuable, relevant, and captivating content is vital for enhancing visibility, nurturing customer relations, and driving more conversions on ecommerce sites.

Creating Valuable Blog Posts

Creating valuable blog posts involves using long-tail keywords, product-led content, and optimizing content with tools like Semrush’s SEO Writing Assistant. Long-tail keywords are less competitive and more specific, making them crucial in your blog post content creation for ecommerce SEO.

Using product-led content in ecommerce blogging helps readers solve problems with products, which can lead to increased customer attraction and higher rankings for product pages and ecommerce category pages themselves.

While crafting valuable blog posts, you can utilize tools like Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer to identify keywords with commercial search intent alone, subsequently guiding the creation of product-led articles. Quality blog posts enhance an online store’s SEO by bolstering search visibility, credibility, and the consistent delivery of unique content.

Leveraging Visual Content

Visual content plays a vital role in enhancing the appeal and informativeness of ecommerce content. Here are some tips for optimizing images:

  • Use descriptive filenames with the product name and main keyword
  • Include relevant keywords in the alt text
  • Provide multiple views with appropriate keywords to improve visibility on search engines.

Educational DIY videos and how-to guides encourage customers to buy related products, while videos like testimonials can be published on platforms such as YouTube to attract and educate potential customers, making them feel more confident about their purchases.

Leveraging tools like Canva to create infographics, organizing content into listicles, using screenshots for software tutorials, and incorporating various types of visual content can significantly enhance the appeal and informativeness of ecommerce content.

Visual storytelling captures potential customers’ attention, with high-quality images and videos building a deeper brand connection and conveying complex ideas effectively, which ultimately enhances user experience and confidence in the brand.

Building Quality Backlinks for Ecommerce SEO

Building quality backlinks for ecommerce SEO

Backlinks play a significant role in Google’s ranking parameters, using the quantity, quality, and relevancy of a page’s internal links, as a measure of its trustworthiness. Therefore, the creation of quality backlinks is imperative for ecommerce SEO. Ecommerce sites can cultivate backlinks through various strategies, including:

  • Guest posting
  • Subscribing to services such as Help A Reporter Out
  • Leveraging outdated resources via the Moving Man Method
  • Participating in partnerships at events.
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However, link building for ecommerce sites is challenging because product or category pages typically offer little value for external parties to link building back to them. Unlinked mentions of brands or products can be converted into backlinks by reaching out to authors, and link-building tools like Ahrefs help to find these mentions as well as to locate popular lists for product features or contextual backlinks from relevant sites.

Guest Posting

Guest posting is a popular and effective way to build quality backlinks for your ecommerce site. It involves:

  1. Identifying websites for guest posting opportunities
  2. Reaching out to influencers
  3. Securing backlinks through valuable content
  4. Reach out to influencers and make use of content collaboration platforms to secure guest posting spots.

Guest posting enhances ecommerce SEO by acquiring valuable backlinks, boosting referral traffic, establishing brand authority, growing social media following, and generating qualified leads.

Influencer Partnerships

Influencer partnerships can be an effective way to build quality backlinks. Identify relevant influencers in your niche by reviewing their content and determining if their audience aligns with your target market, with a focus on micro-influencers for potentially higher engagement and value.

Offer free products to influencers in exchange for reviews, mentions, or dedicated posts and secure backlinks to your ecommerce store within their content. Sponsor influencer content through paid partnerships, ensuring that backlinks to your ecommerce site’s product pages are included as part of the collaborative effort.

Cultivate long-term relationships with influencers by regularly engaging with their content and collaborating over time, leading to more natural and authoritative backlinks.

Top Ecommerce SEO Tools to Boost Your Online Store

Using SEO tools for ecommerce SEO website optimization

The world of ecommerce SEO is complex, and fortunately, there are a plethora of tools available to simplify the process and enhance your efforts. Some of these tools include:

  • Google Search Console: Helps monitor site performance and address technical SEO issues
  • Semrush: Assists with keyword research and competitor analysis
  • Ahrefs: Analyzes link profiles and provides insights for improving SEO

Using these tools can greatly improve your ecommerce SEO strategy.

But you may ask, how can these tools specifically enhance your ecommerce SEO endeavors?

Google Search Console

Google Search Console is a valuable tool for monitoring the performance of an ecommerce website in terms of its search engine visibility and optimization. The tool offers a variety of SEO features in one place, including URL inspection, sitemap checks, and a mobile usability report. These features are beneficial for identifying opportunities to optimize an ecommerce website, helping to improve its overall search engine rankings and usability.

Using Google Search Console effectively can lead to significant advantages for an ecommerce business, by providing insights and tools to enhance its online presence.


Another powerful tool for ecommerce SEO is Semrush. It offers a range of features to optimize ecommerce websites for search engines. Semrush’s Keyword Magic Tool includes an ‘Intent’ filter that accelerates the process of identifying commercial and transactional keywords for ecommerce websites. Using SEMrush can reveal what target keywords a competitor’s ecommerce site ranks for, providing insights into one’s target keyword strategy.

Semrush’s Site Audit tool enables ecommerce site owners to diagnose and address a range of technical SEO issues that could hinder site performance and rankings. In essence, Semrush offers comprehensive solutions to meet your ecommerce SEO needs.


Ahrefs is known for its comprehensive SEO features. It is used to:

  • Create SEO campaigns
  • Analyze link profile, keyword rank, and overall SEO performance
  • Conduct keyword research for Google, Amazon, and YouTube
  • Conduct a backlink gap analysis to find linking opportunities for your ecommerce site

By identifying specific articles that link to competitors, online stores can discover new backlink opportunities and potentially reach out to those platforms for collaboration. Ahrefs, therefore, is an indispensable tool in your ecommerce SEO toolkit.


In conclusion, ecommerce SEO is a multifaceted strategy that plays an essential role in enhancing the visibility of your online store, attracting organic traffic, and converting visitors into customers. From understanding the basics of ecommerce SEO to leveraging content marketing and building quality backlinks, each aspect of ecommerce SEO contributes to the overall success of your online store.

By utilizing top ecommerce SEO tools like Google Search Console, Semrush, and Ahrefs, you can monitor site performance, conduct keyword research, analyze link profiles, and address technical SEO issues effectively. The path to ecommerce success may be complex, but with the right strategy, tools, and persistence, you can navigate it successfully and achieve your business goals.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I start SEO as a beginner?

To start SEO as a beginner, you need to build a solid technical foundation, research keywords, create optimized content, and focus on building links and promoting your content. Monitor your progress using analytics. Good luck with your SEO journey!

Is SEO worth it for ecommerce?

Yes, SEO is worth it for ecommerce businesses as it helps increase organic traffic, visibility, and potential customers, and ultimately leads to increased sales.

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What is e-commerce in SEO?

E-commerce SEO is about optimizing your online store to rank higher in search engine results, increasing visibility, and driving more traffic through. It involves strategies such as website optimization and high-quality content to achieve better rankings and attract more visitors.

How can I build quality backlinks for my ecommerce site?

To build quality backlinks for your ecommerce site, consider strategies such as guest posting, influencer partnerships, and converting unlinked mentions into backlinks. These methods can help enhance your ecommerce site architecture its online presence and credibility.

What are the top ecommerce SEO tools?

The top ecommerce SEO tools are Google Search Console, Semrush, and Ahrefs. These tools assist in monitoring site performance, using search volume to target keywords,, conducting keyword research, analyzing link profiles, and addressing technical SEO issues.

About the Author

Tom Koh

Tom is the CEO and Principal Consultant of MediaOne, a leading digital marketing agency. He has consulted for MNCs like Canon, Maybank, Capitaland, SingTel, ST Engineering, WWF, Cambridge University, as well as Government organisations like Enterprise Singapore, Ministry of Law, National Galleries, NTUC, e2i, SingHealth. His articles are published and referenced in CNA, Straits Times, MoneyFM, Financial Times, Yahoo! Finance, Hubspot, Zendesk, CIO Advisor.


Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Social Media




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