The Ultimate Guide to WooCommerce SEO

The Ultimate Guide to WooCommerce SEO

WooCommerce SEO. Do you want to improve your WooCommerce SEO? Is your WooCommerce store SEO friendly? Are you looking for to maximize the visibility of your online store to search engines?

SEO plays an huge role, where all websites including eCommerce sites rank in search results. If you want to improve your site and make it easier for people to find your products in search engines, then you need to optimize your online store. By optimizing your online store and products you can reach more people and make more sales.

For Search Engine Optimization, you need to develop some strong keywords that are used throughout your eCommerce site. These focus keywords should be fitted to your product pages, rich snippets, meta descriptions, woocommerce URLs, permalinks, image name and alt text, in addition to the rest of your content.

In this article, we’re going to take a deep dive into the WooCommerce SEO and how to optimize it with some useful tips and discuss our picks for the best free SEO plugin for WordPress.

WooCommerce SEO Tips

Before we dive deep, let’s start from the basics.

What is WooCommerce?

Before we give the definition of WooCommerce, let’s first learn What is WordPress?

WordPress is the most popular free and open source content management. It is most associated with blogging but supports other types of web content including traditional mailing lists and forums, media galleries, and online stores. It support lots of Plugins to customize website.

WooCommerce is the free and open source eCommerce plugin for WordPress. It is designed to create small to large-sized online merchants. There are lots of WordPress eCommerce themes or WooCommerce themes available to design your online store. With WooCommerce WordPress you can easily create a single online store.

You might have already learn about WooCommerce features. Before starting an online store, most beginners usually ask some questions:

Is WooCommerce free? How does WooCommerce compare to Shopify i.e, WooCommerce vs Shopify? and is WooCommerce SEO friendly?

The answer of the above questions are:

Is WooCommerce free? Yes. WooCommerce is totally free to install and use.

How does WooCommerce compare to Shopify i.e, WooCommerce vs Shopify? We have created a detailed comparison of WooCommerce vs Shopify that you can use to see which is the best platform for you. The answer to the last question is below.

Read: How to Install WooCommerce.

Let’s have a look of WooCommerce Demo and WooCommerce tutorial video below respectively.

Is WooCommerce SEO Friendly?

Yes, WooCommerce is SEO friendly just out of the box. WooCommerce is SEO friendly means it has certain SEO features built-in that can be used by SEO Experts to optimize a website for SEO rankings.

WooCommerce is not a standalone eCommerce platform like Shopify, it’s a plugin that needs WordPress to run. You can definitely use plugins like yoast SEO or free SEO plugins for WordPress and techniques to further improve WooCommerce product SEO.

When you start an online store with WooCommerce, it is up to you to add WooCommerce themes, products, description, images, and other content on your store. You’re responsible to optimize all additional content that you add.

WooCommerce SEO is an ongoing process, and you will need to keep it up to see the growth of your online store.

How to SEO WooCommerce

WooCommerce is powered by one third of all online stores, let’s find out how to make yours stand out from the crowd.

Here is the top WooCommerce SEO tips to follow and fully optimize your online store:

1. Write SEO Friendly Product Titles

Just like optimize blog posts for SEO, you also need to optimize your individual WooCommerce products titles for SEO. And the most important part of WooCommerce product SEO is to write SEO-friendly product titles.

To make it easier, you have to install the free version of Yoast SEO plugin. This will add an extra section in all your product pages called snippet where you can optimize both product titles, meta descriptions and slug.

To change the product title, login to your WooCommerce store, click on Edit button of product and scroll down to the Yoast SEO section and look for the SEO Title.

Optimize WooCommerce Product Title

Your WooCommerce product SEO title can be slightly different than the product title on your online store. You can use specific keywords that you think your customers will use when searching for the product.

Make sure not to use misleading or incorrect titles that would trick users and search engines because that could get your website penalized.

An SEO Friendly product page title should have the following criteria:

– Accurately describe the product or service that you are selling.

– Keep the title length between 50-60 characters.

– Every product on your online store should have a unique title.

– Make it different from what is already on the first page of Google.

Before you write a product title, open Google and type your product keywords for search. See what is already available in the first search page and try to make your product titles different than that.

Google will not show the same title more than once, so make sure that your title is unique.

You can differentiate your titles by including product benefits.

Product Titles With Benefits

– Always include SEO Keywords.

– Keep your domain name just on the right of the title.

Domain Name Right on Product Title

2. Add SEO Meta Descriptions to all Products

Just below the title and Slug in Yoast SEO, you will also see a box to add your own product meta description.

Add Product Meta Description

What you just need to know about product meta descriptions is:

If you do not write any meta description for your products here, Google will automatically create it using the text found on the page.

– Product Meta Description length should be less than 160 characters.

– Include keywords and product description and benefits within 160 characters wisely.

Product Page Meta Description

3. Create SEO Friendly Product URLs / Slug

Another element that needs your attention is the product URLs / slug. Slug is a product’s nice-name used by WordPress in your WooCommerce URLs also known as permalinks. By default, WooCommerce uses product’s SEO title as the slug. However, sometimes the default slugs do not contains any relevant SEO keywords.

You can also change that in your product’s SEO settings. Just enter WordPress admin menu and select Settings > Permalinks. Scroll down to the bottom and find out the Product Permalinks section.

Make sure that you use main keywords in the slug and don’t make it too long.

Products SEO Slug

Some guidelines for making SEO friendly products URLs are:

  • Use dashes (-) to separate the words to make up a URL
  • Keep it short and descriptive
  • Avoid stop words such as ‘an’, ‘the’, ’and’ etc
  • Include the keywords
  • Include the product name and some important characteristics

4. Enable Breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs are great for internal linking. It appear along the top of the product pages and help visitors move back to previous category or landing pages easily. It also appear in search results giving your site extra advantage in rankings.

Google Search Results Breadcrumbs

To enable breadcrumbs for your WooCommerce products just go to SEO > Search Appearance page and click on the Breadcrumbs tab.

Enable Breadcrumbs

Then you have to make sure that breadcrumbs option is ‘Enabled’.

Click on the save button to save the changes and store your settings.

To display breadcrumbs in your WooCommerce theme, you will have to add the following code to your running theme or child theme. Just edit the header.php file of your theme and add the following code towards the end.

<?php if( function_exists('yoast_breadcrumb') ) {yoast_breadcrumb( '<p id="breadcrumbs">','</p>' );}?>

5. Optimize the Product Categories and Header (H1) Tag

The header or H1 Tag is what is shown on the product page. It can be the same or different than the product page title.

You can use the header tag to give more info about the product, without the limitations of 60 characters of the page title.

Header and title tag example:

Product H1 Heading

Product categories also help search engines to rank high. Each product category and tag has its own page in WooCommerce which is crawled and listed by the search engines.

Product Category and Pages

Since these pages have similar products and thus increases their keyword density and making them more likely to rank higher for those keywords.

Many beginners get confused about the difference between product category and tags and end up using them incorrectly. Categories means broad grouping of your products.

For example, a clothing store may have categories like men’s, women’s, accessories, jewelry, cosmetics, etc. Categories are hierarchical, so you can add child categories to the parent category.

On the other hand, tags are specific keywords that describe the properties of the product. For example, a shoe can have tags like casual, official, and more.

6. Optimize Product Content

One of the biggest SEO problems in eCommerce websites is duplicate content in product descriptions. If your product content is not unique, it gives no incentive to Google to rank your pages high in the search results.

To avoid this you need to make the best possible effort to write unique product descriptions for all your products.

Let’s see how to do that.

When editing a product in WooCommerce, there are two places where you can write the product content.

The top part is the product long description and the bottom part is the short description.

WooCommerce Product Description Settings

If you haven’t customized your WooCommerce theme, then after adding both a long and short product description and publish the page, it looks like this:

WooCcommerce Product Descriptions

Google considers any content that is shown above the fold to be more important than the content that is found in the lower parts of a page.

To take the advantage of this, make sure that You-

  • Provide a UNIQUE short description for all your products.
  • Include the product name and the basic characteristics.
  • Add a summary of the product benefits.
  • Include the keywords you want to rank higher for.

Amazon is doing a great job with short product descriptions above the fold. Here is an example:

Product Short Description

Follow these best SEO practices for product long description:

– Make your product content unique.

– Use LSI or similar type of keywords.

Here is a good example of a long product description:

Product SEO Long Description

7. Optimize Product Images and Videos

Add Alt Text to Product Image for SEO

Any images that you add on your product page should be optimized for image SEO.

Optimized images increases the chances of achieving high rankings in Google image search as well as Pinterest search.

When adding an image to WooCommerce using the Media function of WordPress you have the option to specify a Alt Text, Title, Caption and Description.

WooCommerce Image SEO Settings

ALT TEXT: This is the most important element for image SEO. In the alt text describe the product as shown in the image. Try to incorporate keywords in your text but avoid using only keywords.

Title: Use the product name without any dashes.

Caption: Write a caption and make sure that it is shown correctly just below the image. The caption can be the same as the ALT text or may different.

Description: This field is optional. It is not used for to optimize image SEO.

Video SEO

Videos are very powerful tool especially for selling physical products. You can add videos in your product description pages to show the demonstration of the product features to customers.

You should consider the following guideline for SEO:

Upload Videos on YouTube

Create a YouTube Channel and upload your videos on YouTube and then embed them on WooCommerce site. To upload videos on YouTube, you can use different software like YouTube uploader.

If you directly upload and stream videos from WordPress it will slow down your website. The best way is to embed videos to your product page by copy/pasting the video URL from YouTube.

This way you also have more chances to get organic traffic from YouTube search.

See the below video on how to write tags on YouTube:

8. Track Customers with Google Analytics

The most important part of an effective WooCommerce SEO strategy is data. You need to know where your users are coming from, how they found your online store, what products they are looking for, and what are they doing on your store.

Google Analytics SEO can help you track all this information, but it’s extremely difficult to set it up properly.

For further reading on Google Tracking: A Beginner’s Guide to Google Analytics for eCommerce

9. Speed up WooCommerce Store

Website speed is one of the most important ranking factor which Google considers. That means faster websites are more likely to rank higher than slower websites. There are several tools for website speed test.

WooCommerce is continuously working to improve the loading speed of WooCommerce powered websites.

To speed up WooCommerce store you can do the following:

  • Make sure that you are running the update version of both WordPress and WooCommerce.
  • Upgrade your PHP to the latest version. Check your web hosting provider for this options.
  • Make sure that you have your own VPS web hosting and you are not using shared hosting.
  • If you are handling a lot of images, use a Content Deliver Network (CDN).
  • Avoid to install too many plugins. Plugins are very powerful for your store but too many plugins can slow down your store.
  • Review the WooCommerce System Status Report which can be found under WooCommerce > Status and follow the recommendations if there is any.
  • Use a caching plugin that is compatible with the WooCommerce.

  10. Mobile Friendliness

Check whether your WooCommerce website is mobile friendly or not, depends on the WooCommerce theme you are using. This has no relation with the WooCommerce core functionality.

Data shows that more than 60% of searches and a large majority of eCommerce transactions are now executed through mobile platform.

So, if your website is not mobile friendly, you are loosing the chances of getting valuable SEO traffic or making sales.

To make sure that your store is mobile friendly, run the Google mobile friendly test and fix any issues.

11. Improve WooCommerce Security

Search engines like those websites that are safe and secure. Google warns their users from scams, malware, and phishing websites, by quickly marking unsafe websites with a warnings.

This will not only destroy your WooCommerce SEO rankings but will also have a serious impact on your brand’s reputation.

Hackers are always targeting random websites with brute force attacks, malware injection, and data theft attempts. To prevent this you need to take all the precaution for WooCommerce store’s security.

You can read our article to harden your WooCommerce security.

12. Use Search Engine Optimized WooCommerce Themes

WordPress is the most search engine friendly site builder in the world. To take the full advantage of the existing SEO functionality in WordPress make sure your that your WooCommerce site uses a theme built for SEO.

Here are a few of the best SEO WooCommerce themes.

Shopisle

WooCommerce themes Shopisle

ShopIsle’s neat and clean presentation will help your sales and make your store accessible to everyone. No coding skills are required.

Creativo

WooCommerce Theme Creativo

Creativo is easy to customize. It has 7 skins, 3 design layouts, and multiple header styles.

Corner

WooCommerce Theme Corner

The theme is clean, minimalist, and bright. It includes widgets for Twitter, Flickr, and content discovery.

You can also use free WooCommerce themes from theme forest for your store.

Ultimate Guide to WooCommerce SEO: Final Words

WooCommerce is SEO friendly but that does not mean that any WooCommerce website can rank high in Google without working on your technical SEO, content, site structure and off-page SEO.

When optimizing your WooCommerce store we suggest you follow the above tips.

Your top priority is to sell your products. And these are the pages that you want to attract search engine to get traffic and make sales.

Spend some time on your product titles and URLS and work on the product content. Give users and as well as search engines as much information as possible in a language they can both understand.

Do your keyword research and find out what keywords people are searching for your products and make sure that these are found in all SEO optimized elements.

Work on mobile friendliness and page speed and make sure that your website is mobile friendly, fast and secured.

Last but not the least, once you finish with on-site SEO, start thinking on how you can promote your brand on the Internet. Having an active blog with quality content can solve this problems with website promotion.

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