Search engine algorithms are getting more and more sophisticated by the day, and as an online business owner, you need to make sure you or someone on your staff is on top of the changes.
So let’s talk about seven proven ways to drive more traffic to your online store in 2021.
Start by getting your priorities straight
To get the best results from optimizing your eCommerce site for SEO, you need to keep things simple and focus on the tactics that are going to be the most fruitful. So, it’s best to focus on:
- On-page SEO
- Content marketing
- Building backlinks
Essentially, this means you need to be targeting the right keywords on your product and category pages, creating informative content that will bring the right people to your site, and encouraging high-authority sites within your niche to provide you with quality links back to yours.
Create content that boosts your E-A-T
E-A-T stands for expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. It’s a term that comes from Google Search’s quality evaluation guidelines, and it’s been an important ranking factor since 2018.
So, if you want to climb the search engine results pages (SERPs), you need to be creating content that shows Google your site is a reputable source of information.
Let’s take a look at some companies that do a great job of creating E-A-T-boosting content.
RealFX is an online real estate agent that publishes a lot of high-quality content about buying property. Their guide to private mortgage insurance is a great example.
They outline everything prospective homeowners might want to know about the subject. Not only will this build trust with potential clients, but it also sends a strong message to search engines, who will now be more inclined to rank the company’s website for property-related queries.
Book Your Data is another company that does a great job of showing its expertise, authority, and trustworthiness with high-quality and helpful content.
The business specializes in helping their clients to reach their target audience and make more sales through email marketing, so it regularly publishes informative resources and how-to guides on the subject.
Again, this proves the company’s worth to prospective customers, and also signals to search engines like Google that its team really knows their stuff. This can then lead to better rankings overall.
Follow the lead of these websites and think about how you can show off your skills and knowledge with high-quality content your prospective customers (and search engines) will love.
Promote your content on social media
Using social media is a great way to get more eyes on your content. And, while it hasn’t been dubbed an official ranking factor, there is evidence to suggest content that receives a lot of likes and shares also ranks well on the SERPs.
When you’re devising your social media strategy, consider who your audience is, and therefore where they’re most likely to hang out. You don’t just have to guess, either — if you spend some time using a range of different platforms, you can then assess the results to see where you should be concentrating your efforts.
SocialPilot has a great round-up of third-party social media analytics tools that can help you to monitor this.
Target long-tail keywords with your content
You’ll need a strong keyword research strategy to boost your SEO, and this should involve finding long-tail keywords you can target with your content.
Long-tail keywords are more specific, and fewer people will typically be searching them. But this means they’re less competitive, and the traffic they drive to your website is likely to be more relevant to your business.
To find long-tail keywords, use a professional keyword research tool like SEMrush or Moz Keyword Explorer. You might be used to picking out the results with the highest search volumes, but you’ll want to scroll a little further to find long-tail versions.
For instance, if you type “running shoes” into a keyword research tool, this will come up as a general keyword with a lot of searches — around 200,000 a month. But if you keep looking, you’ll find “how often to replace running shoes”, which is a long-tail keyword, gets 1,000 searches a month.
You could create content addressing this question and will have a much better chance of ranking highly on the relevant SERPs. Plus, anyone asking this question might be looking to buy a new pair of running shoes so, once they’ve read your guide, they could well hop on over to your product pages and make a purchase.
Create the how-to guides your customers are looking for
Creating how-to guides has a lot of benefits. They’ll allow you to target keywords and questions your customers are plugging into search engines, which could lead them to your site. Plus, you can show off your expertise and build trust with shoppers.
For inspiration, let’s take a look at some businesses that create high-quality how-to guides.
FreshBooks is an online accounting software provider that publishes a lot of helpful guides aimed at their target audience — small business owners and freelancers. For example, they have a guide to writing invoice letters, which is a common problem their ideal customers might face.
This guide walks them through the process, targeting relevant keywords along the way. This means it’s a great tool for driving a lot of valuable traffic to FreshBooks’ website.
Similarly, MyCanadaPayday is a loan provider that aims to help its target audience manage their money more effectively. So, they often create money-saving guides, like their blog post on how to save money during holiday travel.
This is a common worry for a lot of people, so this how-to guide could do a great job of sending the right people to the company’s site. And it helps to establish a level of trust so, when a reader next needs to borrow money, MyCandaPayDay will be at the forefront of their mind.
Consider whether you need a local SEO strategy
If your business serves a particular area, you should implement a local SEO strategy to attract more valuable traffic!
To boost your local SEO, you should target local keywords, optimize your Google My Business listing, build backlinks on other local sites, and create localized content to attract your target audience.
If you have multiple locations, it’s also worth creating a page for each so both website visitors and search engines get a clear idea of where you’re based.
Bay Property Management Group does this well with their localized pages. Because they serve several different areas, they need to make this clear with the content on them. On each location page, they mention the relevant area in the page title, header, and body content. They also include their specific addresses, photos of the area, and details of the services they offer to local residents.
Despite being a national chain, Target incorporates local SEO into their content very well! Take a look at all of the helpful information on their Find a Store page:
For this particular store in Minneapolis, you can see the store name, the hours, the phone number, address, and COVID-19-related services. This is a helpful page that also indicates to Google that the chain has a store in this area. So, the search engine will be more likely to rank the site for relevant local searches.
Create link-worthy assets other sites will want to share
You should also focus on building your backlink profile, as this can improve your search engine rankings and send more traffic your way.
One way you can do this is by creating high-quality content others will want to share and link to.
Infographics are great for this, as they’re fun, colorful, and ideal for presenting data-heavy content in a digestible way. They can also slot into articles, which makes it easier for sites to share them.
Take a look at this example from SEMRush. They break down the top 10 SEO skills by country in an easy-to-understand way. It’s colorful, informative, and much more understandable than a long list of data and percentages.
Original research tends to earn a lot of links, too, because it typically gives a new perspective on a topic. Consider whether you could conduct a survey or experiment that will provide your industry with new information it’s currently lacking. Then people will link back to your results when they’re trying to make a point in their content.
Ultimate guides are great link-building tools as well. They answer every question someone might have about a topic, so they can work well for a lot of different linking opportunities. Plus, they’re great for showing off your expertise and building trust, too.
Search engines are becoming increasingly sophisticated, so your SEO strategies need to be tweaked on a regular basis so you can keep driving organic traffic to your site.
Ready to take your eCommerce store to the next level? Check out PinnacleCart’s marketing services. Explosive growth lies ahead!
Alex Ratynski is a Content Strategist at Loganix, an SEO fulfillment partner that works with agencies and marketers. The company focuses on helping businesses to improve their online visibility, so they can grow and reach their goals. If you enjoyed this article, visit the Loganix blog for more expert advice.