14 Critical SEO Mistakes to Avoid for Ecommerce Websites

Jutamas Lampech | May 17, 2024

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The ecommerce sector is continually becoming more competitive for businesses. In fact, global ecommerce sales are expected to reach $6.9 trillion in 2024 and are projected to grow to $8.1 trillion by 2026 (Forbes).

This means your ecommerce website needs to perform better than ever before to stand out from the crowd and capture your ideal customers. One way to do this is through leveraging ecommerce Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). 

Ecommerce SEO helps to ensure your website ranks well in search engine results and provides a good user experience. In this article, we’re sharing our expertise on ecommerce SEO, highlighting the top 14 common SEO issues for you to avoid, and how to resolve them.  

Let’s dive in. 

1.Duplicate content

Identical or very similar content across multiple pages (often stems from product pages with multiple URLs due to tracking parameters and product variations) dilutes SEO value, confusing search engines and harming rankings. 

To fix this, implement canonical tags or rewrite content to make sure each page is unique and serves a distinct purpose.

2.Poorly written product descriptions

Uninformative, bland descriptions fail to engage users or utilise keywords, reducing search visibility and user interest.

Instead, create compelling, detailed descriptions incorporating keywords naturally to improve relevance and user engagement.

3.Lack of product reviews

Reviews boost SEO through fresh, unique content and influence purchasing decisions. Absence may lower trust and conversion rates.

Make sure to encourage customer reviews through post-purchase emails or incentives to enhance content freshness and credibility.

4.Complex site structure

A confusing website architecture hinders user navigation and search engine crawling, negatively impacting user experience and indexation.

Simplify navigation with a clear hierarchy, intuitive categories, and a user-friendly menu to improve crawlability and UX. 

5.Slow loading speed

Slow websites frustrate users, increase bounce rates, and are disliked by search engines, leading to lower rankings.

To fix this issue, optimise images, leverage browser caching, and reduce server response time to enhance page speed.

6.Non-mobile friendly design 

With mobile-first indexing, sites not optimised for mobile devices suffer in rankings and provide poor user experiences.

Adopt responsive design principles to make sure your site is accessible and performs well on all devices.

ecommerce SEO

7.Thin content on product pages

Sparse content offers little value to users and search engines, making it hard to rank well for relevant queries.

Instead, boost product pages with detailed descriptions, specifications, and relevant content to add value.

8.Missing alt text for images

Without descriptive alt text, search engines can’t understand image content, missing an opportunity for ranking in image search.

Make sure to add descriptive alt text to all images, incorporating relevant keywords to improve accessibility and SEO.

9.Ineffective keyword & search intent optimisation

Not properly using relevant keywords in content and metadata makes it difficult for search engines to rank pages for target queries.

Instead, conduct thorough keyword and search intent research and strategically incorporate them into titles, headers, and content. It can be worthwhile to engage an SEO agency to help you with this step. 

10.Broken links & 404 errors

These issues disrupt user experience and hinder search engine crawling, negatively affecting site credibility and rankings.

Regularly audit your site to identify and fix broken links, and customise 404 pages to guide users.

11.Poor internal linking structure

Inadequate linking limits the flow of page authority and confuses users, weakening the SEO performance of the entire site.

Implement a strategic internal linking strategy to distribute page authority and help users navigate your site. 

12.Ignoring structured data 

Not using schema markup misses enhancing search listings with rich snippets, reducing click-through rates and visibility. 

Use schema markup to improve your site’s listings with rich snippets, improving visibility and CTR. If you’re unsure, you can reach out to an SEO specialist for help setting up your website’s structured data.

13.Not optimising for local SEO

Failing to target local searchers misses attracting nearby customers, crucial for eCommerce sites with physical locations. 

Claim your Google Business Profile listing, gather local reviews, and include local keywords in your content.

14.Neglecting analytics & performance tracking 

Without monitoring site performance and user behaviour, it’s difficult to identify and rectify issues affecting SEO and conversions.

Utilise tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console to monitor site performance and user behaviour, then adjust strategies accordingly.

ecommerce SEO

Final Thoughts 

Avoiding these common pitfalls of ecommerce SEO will help your website to reach higher in search results and perform better for your business. It will help to create seamless experiences for your customers, foster trust, and deliver real value. With guidance from an SEO agency, you’ll be able to position your store for long term success. 

Written By

Jutamas Lampech
I’m a South-side girl living in the North-side of Thailand, in the culturally rich city of Chiang Mai. My dream is to backpack around the world! With a deep passion for SEO and digital marketing, I’ve been diving into this exciting field for the past two years. I’m continually learning and growing, always eager to discover the latest trends and strategies. Outside of work, I find joy in the art of cooking. Lastly, I wish for every stray cat to find a loving home.

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