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Mastering eCommerce SEO: Benefits, Tips and How-Tos – Full Guide 2024

by Dennis Lazard · Written October 10, 2023 · Updated October 12, 2023
It isn't surprising that the eCommerce industry is growing rapidly all across the world. Considering the COVID-19 impact and global digitalization, modern customers prefer to shop online (in fact, they tend to do everything directly from their phone instead of going somewhere psychically).

The total revenue earned in the eCommerce sector in 2022 was $819 billion. Experts suggest that the number will reach almost $1,500 billion by the end of 2027. Alongside growing popularity among consumers, the number of eCommerce stores and businesses grows as well - so that makes it crucial for companies in that domain to stay ahead of the market and know how to attract relevant target audiences with less effort and investments.

And the easiest way to make sure your business stays at the top of the customer's preferences is marketing. While there is a vast range of marketing strategies to explore, search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the most effective and cost-efficient ways in 2023.

The key here is when your eCommerce site ranks well, customers consider you as the most relevant and solid source of information (read products) they've been looking for. Higher sales aren't the only benefit of proper eCommerce optimization (though we will talk about them later).

In summary, for eCommerce sites, attracting consistent, high-quality organic traffic is vital to compete in a crowded market. But we should also be real on that point - keeping up with changing optimization needs and trends and all that industry jargon can be tough.

It becomes even harder when you have a small team, and you should also focus on other vital tasks, like inventory management, order processing, efficient customer support, ads, legal issues, and customer retention rates.

That is why we created this comprehensive guide that you can explore and implement in practice right after you finalize this piece. Let's get to the point.

Understanding SEO for eCommerce

SEO for eCommerce is a list of practices and actions that companies take with the goal of ranking higher in search engines like Google. The key idea behind the process is to appear on the first page of the Google results when the target audience uses informational keywords, acting as a relevant and solid source of information they are looking for.

SEO in eCommerce is all about knowing what target audience you want to attract, what your target audience is searching for, how they search for your products, and making eCommerce sites authentic for these people so they continue their search within your website instead of leaving within a few seconds.

The eCommerce SEO results will establish where your page SEO is placed in the SERPs for a user's query. For example, if you search "best jeans in London," you will be given multiple results from affiliate websites and eCommerce sites.

This is called a transactional search intent - where the target audience is looking for a product to buy. As an eCommerce store owner or a marketer, you should ensure that when the target audience is looking for a product you sell, your website ranks in the initial few results, or at least on Google's first page.

8 Benefits of SEO in eCommerce

Generate Sustainable Traffic

There are many ways you can get traffic to your eCommerce store, like paid social media and search engine ads, and the results could be high in a relatively short period.

However, maintaining this large volume of traffic is always expensive. You will constantly pay the ad provider, while the cost will get bigger and bigger over time to keep up with the same search volume when competition increases.

Even though getting high and sustainable traffic from SEO requires more time compared to paid advertising, the results are also long-lasting when properly organized. In addition, the majority of investment in SEO for eCommerce happens at the very beginning of the process, while results can last for years without extra investments.

Generate Quality Traffic

Another crucial point of search engine optimization in eCommerce is the ability to generate quality (so not only sustainable one). While other ads can also allow eCommerce businesses to generate quality leads, the majority of traffic will be unqualified, considering its volume.

Typically, getting quality traffic involves using both short and long-tail keywords on each product page that are highly relevant to your products or eCommerce store specialization in general.

When you are able to find the right keywords and effectively implement them into your SEO optimization - you will generate high volumes of visitors, and the majority of them will be ready to buy your products instead of just exploring options or comparing prices.

For instance, let's say you run an eCommerce site that sells women's clothes. You might end up with the 'buy cheap women's clothes' keyword, so you can work towards getting your store ranking highly specifically for that keyword.

This will help increase the number of website visitors while also helping you find which of your visitors are ready to buy your products. One thing to know here: the more niche your keywords are, the more relevant and quality traffic you will be able to generate for your site.

Increase Brand Visibility

eCommerce SEO not only affects traffic - it also affects how your customers (new and existing ones) consider your brand. Branding is essential in the 21st century since more people know about you and can recognize your brand just by one photo - the more you grow within your industry, the higher your chances to stay in demand in the long run.

Even when your target audience compares different eCommerce sites and products based on their preferences, they will see your store in the lost and remember you, so they can either choose right from the list or get back to your website if they are not satisfied with the products they bought from the competitor.

Provide a Better Customer Experience

It isn't surprising that customer satisfaction is one of the key factors in how successful your eCommerce store will be.

Ranking high in Google or other search engines makes it easier for customers to find your products. This is especially crucial when your website URL is tricky to remember, when it doesn't match the brand name, or when it is easy to misspell. You reduce the time needed for your customers to find what they are looking for.

Customers like speed, especially when it comes to online shopping. So, when you appear at the top of the rankings, you increase the chances of customers buying from you.

Statistics show that only 0.78% of users click on eCommerce websites listed on the second page of Google's search, so being presented on the first page is always necessary.

It's Cost-Effective

In contrast to popular marketing techniques like paid social ads or ads, implementing eCommerce SEO best practices allows companies to earn a great source of traffic without the need to pay big upfront and continuing costs.

The key here is that you don't actually pay for eCommerce SEO itself. However, it still requires investment in time and energy. Even hiring specialists who organize SEO optimization, like content writers, editors, and website experts, speeds up the process and still costs less than paid ads in most cases.

Build Customer Trust

One con of online shopping over physical shopping is that it is harder for eCommerce companies to build trust with customers. Yes, it is still the base of any successful brand, including small and large eCommerce businesses.

While there are many things that could be done to boost customer engagement and trust, boosting SEO rankings is one of the most effective and cheaper ones.

As we mentioned, being on the first search engine results pages means customers automatically consider you better than competitors (given quality websites and products).

For instance, let's say you are looking for a lawyer. Would you click on the top page result or search for more options on the second or third page of the results? The higher you rank, the more trustworthy you are in the customer's eyes.

Generate a High ROI

When properly established, eCommerce SEO can drive an extremely high Return On Investment (ROI). Of course, the results will depend on many factors, like the industry you work in, the type of products you develop, and the profit you have from each sale - but eCommerce SEO definitely allows you to generate higher ROI compared to many other marketing techniques.

Timely Influence Buyer Decisions

Proper search engine rankings allow your e-commerce store to be in the conversation at the right time. When your site is well ranked in your domain, your products are discovered during the research process and considered as a legitimate option.

This can become even more beneficial when you have published helpful and insightful content that will act as support for your customers' buying decisions.

How eCommerce SEO Campaign May Look Like | Process Breakdown

Illustration of a magnifying glass focusing on SEO keywords for eCommerce research

Step 1: eCommerce Keyword Research

Keywords are the key to eCommerce SEO success. So, the first step is always identifying high-value search keywords that your potential customers may be using. This can be achieved through several ways:
Amazon and Google Suggest

(Note: Google remains to be the most popular search engine, so we are going to focus on it further).

You probably have already seen that Google search autocomplete feature. So when you start searching for something, the engine will suggest relevant queries:

This can act as a base for keyword ideas, which works especially effectively when you already come up with a few basic keywords in mind.

The same can be done on Amazon - where you will likely see competitors of yours. A great thing about Amazon's suggestions is that they are product-focused. This contrasts with Google analytics, which may come up with some information on keyword suggestions.

We highly recommend being aware of long-tail keywords that are usually either three to four words in length. Therefore, they tend to have lower competition and often offer much higher conversion rates by nature.

Ahrefs is currently one of the most popular eCommerce SEO tools. If you have $99 to spend on a one-month subscription to Ahrefs, you can use this keyword research tool to find keyword suggestions, showcase your ranking, and much more.

For comprehensive and personalized SEO strategies, our team of SEO specialists is ready to assist.

How to Choose the Right Keyword for Your Store?

Once you open Ahrefs, you will likely end up with a range of keywords, both short and long. So, the next step is to narrow down and focus on the keywords that offer the best potential in your specific case. Here, you should consider three factors:

  • Search volume - the higher the volume of the keywords, the more traffic it can bring to your eCommerce site. Ahrefs will provide insights on keyword volume, but you can also use Google Keyword Planner as a free alternative.
  • Competition - the lower the competition, the higher the chances for your site to rank higher in search engines like Google.
  • Page authority (called PA) and domain authority (called DA) will offer you insights on how hard it would be to rank these organic search results. The higher the number, the more challenging it would be to achieve needed results (though there are exceptions).

Wrapping up the idea - you should look for high volume, low competition, and high-intent informational keywords.
Illustration of a user interacting with an organized eCommerce website representing optimal user experience

Step 2: User Experience for eCommerce

When it comes to establishing best eCommerce SEO practices, you shouldn't focus solely on keywords and site optimization. Site architecture will affect your user experience (UX). So, if you want to rank higher and attract quality traffic, you need to make site architecture as convenient for visitors as possible.

  • Ensure that the eCommerce site structure is simple and is scalable;
  • Ensure every category page of the website is just a few clicks away from the homepage.

Pro tip: We recommend adding breadcrumbs to each product page to improve site architecture and navigation for both visitors and Google. Breadcrumbs are used to tell Google how your site is structured and let people stay updated regarding every action and category page they visit on the website.

For that, you can use the app Category Breadcrumbs ($4/month) that shows your visitors the path they are navigated down through category three - useful for Google as well.
Illustration of gears, code, and a mobile device symbolizing the technical aspects of SEO

Step 3: Technical SEO

Technical eCommerce SEO strategy differs from the things we mentioned above. It isn't enough for you to just find and add keywords. Technical SEO isn't available for customers, though it ensures your website is optimized for crawlers, has the required site speed, and is adapted for mobile. A well-thought-out technical eCommerce SEO process allows for the:

  • Higher website engagement since your eCommerce site is fast and offer easy access to category pages;
  • More organic traffic since it is easier to crawl through category pages.

There are some ways you can improve the technical SEOP side of eCommerce optimization:

  • Create logical internal linking with your menus;
  • Submit your sitemap to Google Search Console so you can fix identified errors;
  • Optimize category pages images to load quickly.
Illustration of a webpage with SEO icons showcasing the importance of on-page optimization for eCommerce websites

Step 4: On Page SEO for eCommerce Websites

Once the keyword research is ready and the site structure is properly developed, the next step is usually optimizing your two highest-value pages, which could be:

  • Category pages;
  • Product pages.

If you use Shopify, you likely already have in-built on page SEO features you can benefit from. Some of them include:

  • The canonical tags are included.
  • Your website's sitemap.xml and robots.txt files are generated.
  • Themes generate a title tag, including the store name.
  • Themes to organize linking to social media and sharing options.

While these features are definitely great and can resolve some of the issues, you will still require extra expertise for the following:

  • Edit the title tag, meta tags, and meta description to add your keywords.
  • Edit the alt text for product images to add your keywords.
  • Ensure file names include your keywords.
  • Choose relevant URLs for a blog post, webpages, products, and collections.

Choosing the right URLs

  • Ensure the URL is easy for humans to read and interpret - Google likes the accessibility.
  • Add the main keywords to the URL.
  • Give preference to short URLs over long URLs. The best length is between 50 to 60 characters.
  • Ensure the target keyword is used in the page title tag.
  • Avoid using stop words like "and," "of," "the," and "a" unless they're part of the main keyword.
  • Avoid keyword stuffing since Google will consider your website spammy.
Illustration of a notebook with a blog post, pencil, and SEO icons symbolizing the role of blogging in SEO

Step 5: Blogging

Blogging is one of the most popular forms of content marketing, where you use on-page SEO and technical eCommerce SEO techniques to grow your eCommerce website's search visibility.

It is used by both small and large eCommerce companies to ensure search engines can find your website credible, allowing your site to rank for a target keyword or more that best align with your audience's interests and needs. Using blogging means you use eCommerce SEO power on ongoing long-form content and SEO strategy.

Every blog post (article) published on your website has the power to:

  • Build your reputation as a credible source of relevant information (for both customers and Google).
  • Improve your site's authority.
  • Boost SEO rankings and visibility in organic search.

Let's say you start a company that sells kids' clothes and toys. We bet you want your customers to easily understand your products, use them effectively, and solve their problems. So, if you want to get found in search engines (preferably on the first page of the search), blogging can help you get there.

A well-written and informative blog article filled with relevant keywords can organize you a steady qualified traffic. The more people discover your content and the longer they read it - the more reliable and trustworthy you become as a source of information and, therefore, as a product provider.

It is a common practice for eCommerce sites to struggle with blogging since it takes lots of time and SEO efforts (while still being a cost-effective option for traffic). Randomly publishing the content won't bring any search results.

Luckily, there are many eCommerce companies like ESA Digital that can help you resolve this issue by taking either the entire eCommerce optimization or just blogging part on themselves, organizing keyword research, writing content, optimizing URLs and other parts of the website for your discussed Google search results.
Illustration of interconnected chain links shaped like web pages representing the concept of link building for SEO

Step 6: Link Building

Simply put, the Google algorithm thinks that the best and the most relevant information can be found on web pages that were given "authority" the same way academic papers are given authority - based on the number of citations they get. However, in that case, these citations are called backlinks.

Of course, this isn't the only factor affecting the ranking, internal links are also crucial. However, Google does use the number, quality, and relevancy of both back and internal links to judge a website's quality and trustworthiness.

It isn't surprising that new eCommerce websites have lower authority than those that have been in work for several years. While over time, the website will eventually grow the link mass, building quality backlinks helps Google identify your authority faster.

Finding backlink websites and writing content for them so it is of high quality also takes time and effort. One of the best ways to do that is by focusing on partnerships. Identify what other eCommerce sites you can provide value for and connect with them with the goal of link exchange.

You can always hire specialists from the ESA Digital SEO agency to organize keyword research, optimize product and category pages, and link-building processes so you can focus on other business tasks, reducing stress, efforts, and resources needed for faster website authority.

4 Best Tips for eCommerce SEO

1. Write Thoughtful Product Descriptions

1. Write Thoughtful Product Descriptions
One of the main mistakes most eCommerce owners make is ignoring the importance of meaningful descriptions in eCommerce product pages. Most of them just try to add as many keywords as possible, completely reducing the meaning of the product and making it almost impossible for customers to understand what you want to sell. The same relates to meta description.

While keywords are crucial, we advise you to start by thinking about the sort of information your potential customers may find useful and relevant. Depending on your products, this might include age ranges, instructions, measurements, and more.

Let's say you sell dark Swiss chocolate.

This is a poor description in product pages:

"Buy dark Swiss chocolate, chocolate from Switzerland. These candy bars are made of the best Swiss cocoa powder and salt. If you want to buy the dark Swiss chocolate - click on the button below to make a purchase."

This is an example of a quality product description:

"Our new dark Swiss chocolate candy bar is a perfect choice for anyone looking for quality, healthy, though delicious chocolate. Made in Switzerland of quality cocoa powder, it's filled with salt, gooey raspberry jam, and bold flavors that pop with every bite."

2. Avoid Any Duplicate Content

By duplicate content here we mean the following:

  • Don't just copy/paste manufacturer descriptions. If you are a dropshipping service, ensure you avoid the manufacturer's default description.
  • Write unique descriptions for each product. In case you have similar products - write a unique description with pros and cons for each.
  • Always double-check your URL structure. We recommend watching for things like session IDs, tracking links, and pagination issues.

3. Use Google Ads to Test Your Targets

If you plan to invest lots of resources and hours into ranking for a target keyword, you will hate that it attracts unqualified visitors. So, one of the relatively inexpensive ways to identify the real value of ranking for a specific term is to temporarily pay for placement. Google Ads allows you to set up a campaign and measure your search results.

4. Outsource the Process

As an eCommerce business owner, you probably want to avoid extra stress, resources, and investment needed in order to make your online store successfully rank. Therefore, one of the best tips is to hire an eCommerce SEO company like ESA Digital.

The specialists can either provide you with a comprehensive eCommerce SEO checklist or take your existing website, identify areas for improvements, and organize all the optimization so you can effortlessly achieve long-run search engine results.

Last Thoughts on SEO eCommerce

Considering high competition, it isn't surprising that most eCommerce sites are looking for cost-effective, efficient ways to attract traffic. And there are many ways to rank higher and increase your visibility. However, SEO remains one of the most effective ways to garner significant traffic, optimize product and category pages and receive the visitors you expect.

P.S. Are you interested in working with ESA Digital? Book your discovery call today.

Case Studies

Hanna Sillitoe (BBC Dragons' Den Brand): 8.8X Growth in 12 months

Avg. RoAS in Google and Meta Ads (UK, US)
Avg. eCom Conversion Rate
Active Online Community (Instagram, Email)

ShakeSphere (BBC Dragons' Den Brand): 2X Growth in 6 months

eCom Conversion Rate (CVR)
Online Revenue (US, UK)
Organic Traffic (US, UK)

8.7X Growth in 12 months

Organic Traffic (EU, UK)
Online Revenue (LMS and Service Packs)
more Leads from Organic Traffic

2X Growth in 6 months (made an Exit)

Organic and Direct Traffic (US)
more PR Mentions (Shopify, BigCommerce)
more relevant Leads from Organic Traffic

Hanna Sillitoe (BBC Dragons' Den Brand): 8.8X Growth in 12 months

3.5X RoAS in Google and Meta Ads (UK, US)

4.85% eCom Conversion Rate

180K+ active Online Community (Insta, Email)

ShakeSphere (BBC Dragons' Den Brand): 2X Growth in 6 months

1.5X eCom Conversion Rate (CVR)
2X Online Revenue (US, UK)
3X Online Traffic (US, UK)

8.7X Growth in 12 months

+865% Organic traffic (EU, UK)
+764% more Leads from Organic Traffic
+275% Online Revenue (LMS & Service Packs)

2X Growth in 6 months (made an Exit)

2X Organic and Direct Traffic (US)
+178% more PR Mentions (Shopify,BigCommerce)
1.8X more relevant Leads from Organic Traffic
ESA team combine both a creative and data-driven approach in performance marketing, testing around 10 hypotheses per week for acquisition, engagement and retention. Their work on developing and executing a product growth strategy for the UK and US markets has led to a 68% increase in our number of monthly clients and $1.3M raised in Oct 2019 based on our growth metrics with ESA.”
Roman Grigoriev (
CEO at Splento (fundraised $1.3M)
“​​I can't speak highly enough about ESA team! They have transformed my website from a store that functioned fairly well, to a fully optimised platform which performs better and generates significantly more income through substantially better sales conversions. We have a plan to continue building on the fantastic 7-figure revenue growth we’ve already achieved this year, and I have no doubt that with ESA team on side we will accomplish all this and more.”
Hanna Sillitoe (
Skin Healing Expert, BBC Dragons’ Den Brand
"ESA Agency are SEO and PPC team of our Spain and Portugal eCommerce shops. They created our new websites from the ground up, improving UX usability by 4x times. The result? Double the online visibility of our brand and an increase in our online revenue of 150%. We couldn’t be happier! It’s a perfect partnership."
Ilya Adamsky ( /
CEO at Askona Europe (Brand Sleep.8)
ESA team had outperformed my expectations working with one of our main SEO clients. They delivered X2-times organic traffic growth for 12 client’s websites, working with technical, content and link-building SEO optimisation in Google, website structure, navigation, technical code and conversion rate optimisation.”
Maria Kristalinskaya (
Head of Retail Media at eBay (GE), Techstars Startup Mentor, ex-BBDO
"We are currently working on a SEO strategy with Dennis and his team to push the business to the new £1m Rev. level. Everything — from SEO audit and Keyword Research to Website Implementation and daily communication, has been professional, effective and very clear. We are already seeing great results!"
Elizaveta Proselkova (
CEO at EP-Advisory
“I met Dennis and his Google team, when they pitched their startup Smartsub. We accepted them to our accelerator program in 2017, Batch 9 and they successfully passed through it. Within a short period of time they managed to develop MVP of their product, design and implement go-to-market strategy launching the product on the US market. Their broad digital business experience and data-driven approach allowed them to make things done.”
Cristobal Alonso (
CEO at SWG (funded Smartsub in 2017)
“ESA team with their Google Ads skills, growth mindset and natural ability to mentoring are able to bring a lot of value to startup ecosystem with so many tech companies in their growth stage and businesses struggling with Google online advertising.”
Monika Synoradzka (
CEO at HugeThing (funded Smartsub, 2019)
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