Today’s article on 8 Strategies to Drive the Organic Traffic of Your Online Store is brought to you by Shane Barker, a digital marketer with 20+ years of experience.
Let’s welcome Shane Barker in our blog, and learn from his invaluable experience!
Setting up an online store is one thing. However, driving traffic to it organically and generating leads and conversions is an entirely different ballgame altogether.
You need to effectively do search engine optimization (SEO) for your ecommerce store to drive organic traffic to it.
But why should you concentrate on organic traffic?
Because people rely on search engines to find the information that they’re looking for. In fact, about 36% of people turn to search engines for information. On the other hand, only 5% of them use social media for it.
So, if you haven’t optimized your online store for organic growth, you’re likely missing out on a huge chunk of potential buyers.
To help you, we’ve put together this list of powerful strategies that you can implement with ease.
Strategies for Online Store Optimization
Here are the strategies that you should be using to optimize your online store for better organic growth:
1. Optimize Keywords
To grow your organic traffic, it’s essential to not only write high-quality content using tools for content writing but you should also incorporate your target keywords into the content.
Without target keywords, it can be difficult to get your content to rank on the search engine results pages (SERPs).
So, how can you go about this optimization?
First, use keyword research tools such as Google Keyword Planner and SEMrush to find keywords that are relevant to your brand.
Select those keywords that have a high search volume and low competition. These are the keywords that you should consider incorporating into the content of your online store.
Add these keywords to your page titles, URLs, and meta descriptions. Also, for product pages, try incorporating them into the product descriptions and product titles.
A word of caution here:
When you’re adding keywords to your pages, make sure that you don’t overstuff your pages with them. This can lead to penalties.
2. Improve Page Speed
Your website’s page speed is extremely important for SEO. Page loading speed has already become a ranking parameter for Google. This means that if your website isn’t fast enough, you need to improve its speed to improve your ranking.
For every 0.1 second improvement in the page loading speed, the conversion rates of ecommerce stores shot up by 8.4%. At the same time, the average order value (AOV) increased by 9.2%.
This shows that there’s a direct correlation between the page loading speed and organic growth.
So, how can you improve your page speed?
First, start by checking your current page loading speed. For this, you can use Google PageSpeed Insights and Test My Site.
Image via Test My Site
These tools will show you the current loading speed of your website so that you can get a clear idea of where you stand.
And that’s not all…
They also show you the various fixes that you can employ to improve this page loading speed. You can incorporate these fixes into your website to give a boost to your loading speed.
3. Research Your Competitors
After you’ve started your ecommerce store, you should list your competitors. While it helps to know who they are, it’s also an important strategy that you can use to drive the organic growth of your online store.
You can conduct competitor research using competitor analytics tools such as SEMrush and Ahrefs to find out the strategies of your competitors.
Using these tools, it’s possible to figure out the gap in keywords between your brand and theirs. This can help you find out what you need to focus on to outrank them.
You can also find out which websites they’re getting backlinks from and approach them to get links back to your ecommerce store too.
This can improve your backlink profile and give a boost to your website’s authority.
4. Optimize Your Site Architecture
Yet another important strategy that you should implement is that of optimizing your website’s architecture.
A well-designed website is easy for users to navigate through. At the same time, it also helps improve your SEO.
This is because it becomes easy for users and search engine crawlers to find the pages that they’re looking for.
And how can you optimize your site architecture?
You should try to design your website architecture such that users will require a minimal number of clicks to get to the pages they want.
For this, you can leverage website designing tools that can help you design the framework of your website well.
It’s also essential to ensure that you don’t have broken links that lead to 404 errors. These links can weaken the website’s SEO and can also impact the user experience.
A great type of architecture that you can use is flat architecture. This helps you deliver a better user experience as the users will need fewer clicks to navigate to different pages on your website from the homepage.
Image via Pinterest
5. Data-driven SEO
With the ever-increasing competition in SERPs, it has become almost impossible to rank without a solid strategy. One thing is clear; there’s no room for trial and error. And with that said, you need robust data to point your SEO towards success. Using SERP APIs is a proven way to scrape the web and get structured data to support and propel your SEO. When you know what your target audience is looking for and which backlinks are working well for your competitors, you will certainly hit home with your SEO campaigns.
6. Leverage Internal Links
Internal links are important for navigation and also for your website’s structure. These are links that point from one page on your website to another.
It’s essential to have a powerful internal linking strategy as they can help you pass the link juice from one page to another.
But wait, there’s more…
The internal links also show the most important pages of your website to Google along with the hierarchy.
When you’re creating internal links, make sure that you optimize the anchor text. Use a wide variety of relevant anchor text to ensure that your links are optimized.
And the best part?
You can create internal links not only from one product page to another but also to and from blog posts. This can help you drive traffic from your blog to product pages too.
However, you must ensure that you don’t overstuff your pages with internal links. Doing so can attract a penalty. Similarly, don’t overoptimize the anchor texts. Keep them natural.
7. Optimize for Mobiles
If your ecommerce website isn’t optimized for mobile, you’re missing out on a huge chunk of your potential clients.
This is because about 51% of all web traffic originates from mobiles now.
And that’s not all.
In 2021, it’s expected that about 54% of all retail ecommerce is set to happen on mobiles. And even from an SEO perspective, you should consider making your website mobile friendly. The reason is that Google now has a mobile-first indexing system. This means that a website that doesn’t have a responsive design won’t be able to rank well in search results.
So, what can you do to optimize your website for mobiles?
A great step is to make your website responsive. This would mean that it will offer a great browsing experience regardless of the size of the screen.
Apart from that, you should also work on improving the website’s loading speed on mobiles. This is because mobiles may have fluctuating networks, which can further increase the time taken for the website to load.
Also, to keep up with the ecommerce technology trends, your goal should be to make the website as lightweight as possible. You can achieve this by implementing AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) on your website. This can help improve your page speed drastically.
8. Incorporate a Blog
Blogs are critical for the success of your ecommerce website. They’re so useful that 86% of content marketers use blog posts as a part of their overall marketing strategies.
There’s only so much content that you can create when it comes to the product pages on your online store.
However, when it comes to blog posts, you can write numerous posts on different topics related to your products and brand.
You can even incorporate relevant target keywords into each blog post. This helps you rank for loads of new keywords.
And what does this do?
When your website ranks for a larger number of keywords, you’ll also benefit from more traffic.
From your blog posts, you can then direct the traffic to product pages on your website and generate conversions.
For instance, note how Beardbrand has a blog dedicated to beards. This helps them generate traffic and sales.
Image via Beardbrand
Generating organic traffic for your ecommerce store can be a challenging task. However, to optimize your site for the search engines, you should conduct keyword research and incorporate your target keywords into your content well.
You should also work on your website’s design, structure, and page speed.
It’s also crucial to analyze your competitors’ strategies and implement the best components to outrank them.
You should also use internal links well on suitable anchor text to increase the discoverability of your pages.
It’s also important to optimize your website for mobiles as many buyers now use them to make purchases.
Finally, incorporate a blog into your ecommerce website to generate even more organic traffic.
Do you have any questions about the online store optimization strategies mentioned above? Let us know in the comments.
We feel honored to have Shane Barker’s insights featured in our blog, and we are incredibly thankful for the knowledge he has shared with us.
Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant who specializes in influencer marketing, content marketing, and SEO. He is the co-founder of Attrock, a digital marketing agency. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.