Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is vital for your eCommerce website, as it helps your customers find your online store when they are looking for products and services you offer by increasing the visibility of your website in search engines. By having a successful SEO strategy, you increase the chance of clients coming to your website and converting to paying customers, which is crucial for your business.
Leaving SEO out of your marketing strategy is like writing a book and putting it on the shelf, expecting readers to come and bang on your door and ask to let them read the novel. In case of a book, you don’t need to tear the book apart if it doesn’t have readers. But if your eCommerce website doesn’t have visitors, it means you don’t have customers buying products from you, which might result in closing your store.
As an eCommerce company, you need to make money to keep your business going and to be able to cover costs such as staff salaries, office, website hosting, etc. And if you are not able to pay these costs, you may need to shut down your company. Increasing the traffic to your eCommerce website should be among your top priorities to keep selling products, and SEO is by far the most effective way to do so.
SEO Helps Your Customers Find You
Every store has numerous reasons for existing, and one of the most obvious ones is to reach the customers who need the products they are selling. Having clients looking at your products must be your primary goal to be able to pay bills and survive as a business. But your potential customers might not know your store exists at all until they do research online.
Only the customers that have already done business with you will type your website address in the browser or search for the name of your company. The rest of the users have no information regarding your store. And so, how do you inform them? Run a TV commercial? Pay for a billboard ad?
Google receives over 3.5 billion searches per day, and when it comes to online shopping, 46% of people start their journey with a Google search. That’s where you want your website to appear – in relevant Google search results.
But the online world is quite competitive, and no matter what products you offer, there will be hundreds or even thousands of other stores offering similar or the same merchandise. If you type “buy hair conditioner online” on Google, you’ll see there are 207,000,000 results. And if your website doesn’t rank well and have top positions in the search results, your potential clients might not see your website at all. Nobody is going to navigate through hundreds of pages just to find the hair conditioner you are selling. One study shows that only 0.78% of searchers on Google click on a site from the second page, and most users don’t even scroll past the 5th result.
Google regularly rolls updates of its algorithm to rank pages in search queries, and the ranking might change for some websites. But if you don’t rank in the top results today, you’ll most likely not rank tomorrow either – if you don’t invest in Search Engine Optimization. SEO is the process of increasing the traffic to a site by improving the visibility of it in search queries. So, if you really want to have customers looking at your products (which you should, otherwise it will be impossible to sustain your business), you must optimize your eCommerce website for search engines.
SEO Brings Organic Traffic to Your Website
Organic traffic refers to visitors who visit your website from search engines, without you having to pay for ads.
While with paid ads you can appear in the top results, many customers might not trust the paid ad as much as they trust the free results. Because users think: If Google ranks a website well, it means it is relevant, has high-quality content, and doesn’t need to pay for appearing in search results.
Even if you pay for ads, if the audience you are trying to reach has never heard about your company and doesn’t know who you are, they are less likely to trust your business. If there is no trust, visitors are less likely to purchase your products.
You need to establish your eCommerce website as an authority, acquire market share, and gain trust from potential customers by improving the visibility of your site in search engines. Besides, if you appear in organic search results, more people might click it as it means you have invested in SEO, your website is working properly, Google likes it, and the products you have are relevant to their intentions.
And most importantly, organic search is the digital marketing channel that brings in the highest ROI – return on investment. This is according to 49 percent of the respondents in a survey by Search Engine Land.
SEO Effects Are Long-Lasting
If you rank well in search queries, you increase the authority of your website, both from continued traffic to your website and because your website visitors engage with your content and view you as a leader in your industry. Instead of running ad campaigns at certain times, you have a consistent place in Google search results by increasing the quality of your site. Although you need to keep the site fresh and keep updating content to keep or improve the position in the rankings, SEO effects last much longer as opposed to paid ads. Once you stop paying for the advertisement, you lose the spot in the results, while with SEO, results are much easier to maintain on a smaller budget. If you invest in SEO, have a high-quality website, great content, and work to establish authority you have a recipe for success.
SEO Helps Increase Sales
As we have already discussed, sales are what can help your eCommerce website survive, so it’s essential to have more paying customers on your website. But SEO is not only about getting someone to a specific page. The process of optimization involves many steps for improving the overall user experience and quality of the site, which might lead to more sales.
“SEO is a holistic effort of all pieces of a business, including social media, marketing, web design, networking, and copywriting.”– BIGCOMMERCE
As a part of the SEO strategy, you will create high quality and relevant content that is going to help your potential customers. Writing trustworthy blog articles related to your business will not only spark the interest of users in your products and build a relationship between you and your clients, but it will help you appear in more search queries.
Writing content helps you target more keywords that users type in search queries. By doing so, you appear in more search results, and more potential clients start coming to your site. If visitors find your content helpful and interesting, they’ll be more likely to convert to paying customers. Additionally, users who like your content get to know your brand. Although they might not purchase anything at the moment of reading the post, they’ll remember your brand when it shows up in results and increases the chance of customers buying your products in the future.
Writing content will also bring you backlinks – other sites linking to yours – which increases the authority of your site and is a ranking factor for Google. More backlinks mean better rankings in search results and more visitors on your site. The more people come to your site, the more potential clients you have, which brings you more sales.
But traffic is not the only important aspect of SEO. Google uses more than 200 different factors to rank pages in search results. It means SEO is addressing these factors, so the web page can get to the top of the results. But what are these factors? Unfortunately, there is no precise formula that we know of to tell you exactly how Google organizes pages, but there are some elements SEO experts know for sure affects ranking.
Among these are a mobile-friendly website, page speed, grammar, and spelling, useful content, site usability, etc. Optimizing a website for search engines means you are also improving the user experience for visitors by increasing the quality of the site. Improved user experience will increase your sales. If users have a pleasant experience with your site, they are more likely to make a purchase.
So is SEO really that important for eCommerce? 53% of online shoppers will do research before they buy products. As you see, people start their journey of purchasing products on search engines, and if you don’t invest your time and energy in search engine optimization, then your competitors will, and your potential customers will end up looking at their products.
Losing clients means less income and the possible closure of your eCommerce website. As we understand, no company owner wants their business to fail. So, yes, SEO is really that important for eCommerce. It’s the most effective way of reaching your customers. It’s how people find you, so invest in making your site more visible. Although you won’t see SEO effects in a minute, day, or maybe even months, once you achieve the desired results, its impact will be long-lasting and far more effective than any advertisement. So if you wish to sell your products online, it’s time for optimization.
Get Expert Help
The eCommerce marketing experts at Internet Marketing Geeks have been optimizing, designing and building amazing SEO programs for our clients for over a decade. If you want to super charge your SEO efforts, we encourage you to reach out to us today.