How an eCommerce SEO Agency Helps You Increase Online Sales
If you own an eCommerce website, growing your online sales is a top priority. You’ve probably done some optimization yourself or worked with an SEO company, but how can expert eCommerce SEO services really help you increase sales? In this article, we’ll review the main reasons why an SEO agency focused on eCommerce can take your business to the next level.
SEO vs eCommerce SEO
You might think that every SEO agency works with eCommerce websites, but often they don’t. Many SEO agencies are focused on the majority of businesses out there, small services businesses, and local companies. With this type of agency their main clients include plumbers, restaurants, etc, so they never get an eCommerce experience.
So, what really is the difference between running an SEO campaign for a local business and an eCommerce brand?
- Local SEO campaigns are focused on geographical areas, making the keywords much easier to rank for.
- The websites typically have 10-50 pages
- Almost all websites are built on WordPress, Wix, or other small business website platforms
With this being said, eCommerce websites have the following characteristics:
- Needs a national SEO campaign focused on major keywords with a geographical requirement
- The website may have 1,000 – 100,000 pages
- The website platform is more complicated and can range from Shopify, BigCommerce, or Magento, to enterprise-level platforms such as IMB Websphere.
Your average SEO agency is not used to optimizing websites as complicated as eCommerce websites can be, so they are at a disadvantage with their SEO strategies. Implementing strategies used for local SEO campaigns will not bring the ranking and traffic your eCommerce business needs and you’re expecting after making the investment.
An eCommerce SEO company should have proven methods to optimize homepages, category pages, and product pages. If this is what they do all day and their eCommerce focused, the campaign will be set up for success instead of an SEO agency learning on the job.
Optimizing eCommerce Platforms
As mentioned above, eCommerce websites run on different content management systems (CMS) than basic lead generation/services business websites. Shopify, the most popular eCommerce platform in the world, has been intricacies to it including the way content is added to product pages, how theming works, and more. We’ve written about Shopify SEO issues and as an eCommerce SEO agency, we know how to work around these.
No matter what SEO company you work with, be sure they have a strong history of working with your specific eCommerce platform and have cases studies to back up those results.
Data-Back SEO Strategy Decisions
It should go without saying, the more experience an SEO agency has, the better recommendations they will be able to make for your website. This is not only based on the platform you’re on but also can depend on your industry. Agencies will often focus on certain niches, so if you’re a B2B auto parts business, you may want to work with an agency that has experience in that vertical.
One thing to watch for when hiring an agency that specializes in a vertical is overlapping campaigns or keywords they are managing. Be sure they are not optimizing multiple websites for the same exact keywords, otherwise, that can create a conflict of interest. It’s always OK to ask.
The most exciting opportunities an experienced eCommerce SEO company can bring to the table are highly relevant data-based decisions, meaning recommended optimizations that are proven to work. How should they know their proven? At OuterBox, for example, we have hundreds of eCommerce SEO clients. This allows us to look at the strategies working for them and recommend those same strategies to another business, when appropriate. The ability to do this drastically increases results, cuts down on the time it takes to achieve rankings and allows us to be efficient with time and budget. The less guessing in an SEO campaign the better.
Conversion Rate Optimization
A major advantage of working with an eCommerce-focused agency is their ability to not only perform SEO but also help with conversion rate optimization. At the end of the day, your eCommerce website is all about driving sales! All the organic traffic in the world is useless if that traffic doesn’t turn into revenue.
Conversion rate optimization is often performed at the beginning of a campaign if you already have a lot of traffic or may be performed later in a campaign if you’re not yet driving visitors to the website.
And the other major benefit? Not only does CRO help boost conversions for organic traffic, but it will also help your website perform better across all traffic sources and channels.
A CRO campaign typically includes creating A/B tests of elements or whole pages. This means creating multiple versions of a page, a headline, image, button color, or other important elements. Using various software, including Google optimize, you can then see which version of the element increase conversions. Once you know which performs best that change can be permanently implemented.
Things To Ask SEO Agencies Before Hiring Them
We have a whole piece of hiring an SEO company, so check that out for all of the details, but we’ll run through some main questions to ask a prospective agency before making the decision to sign the contract.
- How many eCommerce clients do you have?
- Are you experienced in working with my platform? How many clients do you have on that platform?
- What eCommerce SEO strategies do you use and can you show me examples of where you’ve done that for your clients?
- Is your SEO work done in-house or are your outsourcing pieces of the work?
- Do you have experience with eCommerce businesses in our vertical?
- What is the average SEO budget your clients have?
Asking these questions will help you to get a must better understanding of the fit between your business and the SEO agency. Be sure you’re comfortable and they have a solid track record of page #1 search results.