How to research keywords for E-commerce SEO

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May 27, 2024

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How to research keywords for E-commerce SEO

How to Research Keywords for E-commerce SEO

In the ever-evolving world of digital marketing, one thing remains constant – the power of effective keyword research. For e-commerce businesses, this task takes on an even greater significance, as the right keywords can make or break your online success.

As the founder of an SEO agency in Manchester, UK, I’ve seen firsthand how a well-crafted keyword strategy can catapult an e-commerce brand to the top of search engine results. It’s not an easy feat, but with the right approach, you can uncover a goldmine of opportunities that will drive traffic, engagement, and ultimately, sales.

So, where do you begin? Let’s dive into the comprehensive process of conducting keyword research for your e-commerce business.

Understanding the Importance of Keyword Research

In the world of e-commerce, the majority of online traffic stems from search engine queries. This means that the keywords your customers use to find your products can make or break your visibility and ultimately, your sales. As Shopify aptly puts it, “Every time someone does a search, the search engine must decide which handful of results to display from hundreds of thousands of possible pages. It’s up to the search engine algorithms to determine the best and most relevant matches for every single search.”

This is where your keyword research comes into play. By identifying the terms and phrases your target audience is using to search for your products, you can optimize your e-commerce site to rank higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs). The closer you are to the top of Google’s search results, the more traffic (and potential sales) you’ll receive.

Mastering the Fundamentals of Keyword Research

Before we dive into the nitty-gritty of the research process, let’s quickly cover some essential terms you’ll encounter along the way:

Keyword: A particular word or phrase that acts as a shortcut to sum up the content of a page or site. These keywords are part of a webpage’s metadata and help search engines match a page to an appropriate search query.

Long-tail keywords: Keywords that contain three or more words. These are often more specific and have a higher commercial intent, meaning the searcher is closer to making a purchase.

Search volume: The total number of searches each month for a particular search phrase (keyword). Higher search volume generally indicates more potential traffic and conversion opportunities.

Competition: The difficulty of ranking for a specific keyword, based on factors like the number of competing websites and the strength of their SEO efforts.

With these foundational terms in mind, let’s explore the step-by-step process of conducting effective keyword research for your e-commerce business.

Uncovering Your Competitors’ Secrets

The first step in your keyword research journey is to identify your key competitors and analyze the keywords they’re targeting. As the team at Inflow suggests, it’s best to steer clear of the industry giants (think Amazon, eBay, Walmart) and instead focus on mid-sized players in your niche.

Start by entering your competitors’ website URLs into a tool like Ahrefs or Semrush. These platforms will provide you with a wealth of valuable insights, including the organic keywords they’re ranking for, the content pages driving the most traffic, and even the keywords they’re missing out on.

Once you’ve compiled a comprehensive list of your competitors’ keywords, it’s time to start refining and expanding your own keyword universe.

Diving into the Keyword Research Process

With your competitors’ keywords as a foundation, it’s time to embark on your own keyword discovery journey. Begin by brainstorming a few seed keywords that represent your core product offerings or the broad categories your customers might search for.

As Shopify suggests, don’t be afraid to get hyper-specific – a niche within a niche, or even a niche within that niche. This level of granularity is key to standing out in a crowded e-commerce landscape.

Start by plugging your seed keywords into a tool like Ahrefs or Google’s Keyword Planner. Analyze the search volume, competition, and related keyword suggestions that these tools provide. Pay close attention to long-tail keywords, as they often have higher commercial intent and lower competition.

As you build out your keyword list, don’t forget to incorporate negative keywords – terms you don’t want your ads or content to appear for. This could include branded keywords of your competitors or other irrelevant modifiers.

Organizing Your Keyword Research

With your initial keyword list in hand, it’s time to start organizing your findings in a way that makes sense for your e-commerce business. Begin by grouping related keywords into topics or themes, creating a content map that aligns with your customer’s search intent.

As the team at Inflow suggests, your content map should include details on the type of content you’ll need to create for each keyword group, such as product pages, category pages, or informational blog posts.

This step is crucial, as it ensures that your keyword targeting is not only relevant to your customers but also aligned with the search engine’s expectations. By creating content that matches the user’s search intent, you’ll increase your chances of ranking higher in the SERPs and driving more qualified traffic to your e-commerce site.

Optimizing for Success

With your keyword research complete and your content map in place, it’s time to put your findings into action. Start by optimizing your existing product pages, category pages, and blog content to include your target keywords in a natural, seamless way.

Remember, search engines are becoming increasingly sophisticated, so it’s important to focus on creating high-quality, informative content that provides genuine value to your customers. Avoid keyword stuffing or other outdated tactics, as these can actually harm your search engine rankings.

In addition to on-page optimization, consider leveraging your keyword research to inform your e-commerce marketing strategies, such as:

  • Developing targeted ad campaigns on platforms like Google Ads or Facebook
  • Crafting engaging social media content that resonates with your target audience
  • Collaborating with industry influencers or bloggers to create content that aligns with your keyword focus

By integrating your keyword research throughout your entire e-commerce ecosystem, you’ll be well on your way to driving more traffic, engagement, and ultimately, sales.

Continuous Refinement and Adaptation

The world of e-commerce and SEO is constantly evolving, which means your keyword research strategy must be as well. Regularly review your keyword performance, monitor changes in search trends, and be prepared to adjust your approach as needed.

Remember, your ultimate goal is to provide your customers with the most relevant, valuable content possible. By staying agile and adapting to their changing needs and search habits, you’ll be able to maintain your edge in the ever-competitive e-commerce landscape.

Ready to take your e-commerce business to new heights? Reach out to our SEO agency in Manchester, UK to explore how we can help you uncover the perfect keywords and craft a comprehensive digital marketing strategy that drives results.

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