The e-commerce industry is growing fast and was expected to be US$ 9.09 trillion in 2019, with a CAGR of 14.7% between 2020 and 2027. The industry is marked by cutthroat competition with very few entry barriers. Your competition is also trying to lure your audience with incredible deals, and you must be one up to stay ahead in the business. Research shows that at least 81% of people did some online research before going for a big purchase. Hence, it becomes critical to ensure that your website is ranked high during search results.
Your marketing team must have stalwarts to help you handle SEO activities that must form an integral part of your digital marketing plan. White hat SEO practices will help your website be ranked higher, and ideally within the top five, during a keyword search. However, do keep in mind that you must steer clear of SEO executives’ common mistakes. In this article, we will discuss some of the SEO mistakes usually done by us.
Are you Using Keywords Optimally?
Most of us use keywords that are irrelevant to the business operations due to which the website ranks poorly during a keyword search. It is the reason why most businesses undertake a thorough keyword research activity to find out the keywords that have a high average monthly search and do not have much competition.
Having the keywords in your content does not help unless you are paying heed to the keyword ratio. You must have proper guidelines in place about the keyword spacing in your content and ensure that there is no keyword stuffing in your content. The primary keyword must be used within the first few lines itself.
The Trustworthiness of the Website
If you have an HTTP website, you must shift to an HTTPS website soon. Given that you may be having several sub-domains, you must buy a Wildcard SSL certificate. It will encrypt the interaction between your web server and the visitor’s browser. Moreover, it is also crucial from an SEO point of view as web browsers mark non-HTTPS websites as “Not Secure”. It makes visitors bounce from your website, and a high bounce rate can tank keyword rankings.
Since 2014, Google has been using website security to penalize the non-HTTPS by preferring the more secure HTTPS sites during search ranking. Being in the e-commerce domain, your site must adhere to the PCI-DSS guidelines to continue allowing online transactions from your website.
Is the website responsive?
Search engines also have a weightage on the responsiveness of your site. Given that 52% of traffic is through a mobile device, search engines have found it pertinent to include it as a critical ranking factor. Your site needs to have the same experience on a mobile device that it provides on a desktop device. The responsiveness of your site would mean it has a proper structure so that the web pages look the same across all devices.
If the site is not optimised for mobile devices, your keyword search rankings will go down. The site must also be downloadable on a mobile device at the same speed as a desktop. Being responsive would also mean that the pictures need to be optimized to download fast on mobile devices. Several plug-ins can help you to optimize the image size.
It is essential to check for duplicate content across your website at predetermined intervals. As your business grows, you will need to add more and more product pages to your site leading to duplication at some corner. Suppose you must have multiple links pointing to the same page, like subtle variations in design and color. In that case, it is better to have a single page with the difference in features mentioned along with the associated price.
You can also use the canonical function to make the search engines understand the page that you want to be ranked. Another way is to use 301 redirects that allow the search engine to move to the page where you want it to be. It is also essential to prevent duplication of page titles and meta descriptions. You can use several duplicate content checking software to ensure there is no duplicate content on the site.
Do the webpages take time to load?
Have you noticed the time taken by your website to load on desktop as well as mobile devices? If you haven’t, you are probably making one of the critical SEO mistakes. Studies show that at least 46% of people say that they hate to wait for webpages to load. Search engines like Google use page load speed as a critical factor when ranking websites. You can utilize various websites like GTMetrix to check the page load speed for both desktops and mobile devices.
One of the main factors is the image size, and you must deploy plug-ins to optimize the size of the images. Similarly, redirect chains can also take up page load times. You must also choose your web host such that there is no compromise on the loading speeds. A Content Delivery Network can also help to optimize the loading speed of your website.
Is the content relevant?
You must deploy proper checks to ensure that your website’s content is relevant to the products sold on the site.
If it isn’t, then there will be too many visitors moving away from the site. Consequently, an increase in bounce rate will lead to the site tanking crucial search rankings. You must not copy or use spun content as they are penalized heavily. Write the page titles and meta description that is relevant for the page. You must allow visitors to share your web pages and enable customers to write reviews on your product pages. A lower number of reviews can also adversely affect conversion rates.
Marketers agree in unison that SEO is an integral part of their online strategy. Your website must be trustworthy, for which you need to procure an SSL certificate. You must adhere to the SEO white hat practices, but you must also avoid some of the critical SEO mistakes that businesses usually make. We have discussed some of them in this article and hope you avoid them.