WooCommerce SEO: The definitive guide for your online store

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So: you’ve chosen to use WooCommerce to sell your products online. That’s great! It’s simple to install, easy to customise, and it’s free at the base level. Once you’re all up and running, however, it’s time to fine-tune things a little bit with some genius WooCommerce SEO tricks. But first…

What exactly is SEO?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. In a nutshell, this refers to the process of ensuring your site appears sooner in Google listings when people search for terms related to your business. If you run a business selling, say, handmade plant pots, by performing SEO you could (given enough time) ensure that anybody searching Google for the term ‘handmade plant pots’ would see you in the listings—ideally in the number one spot.

There are hundreds of tricks to SEO, and though it’s easy to learn the basics, it’s pretty tough to master. Thankfully we’re here to guide you!

Search engine optimisation for WooCommerce: Tips and tricks

1. Choose your theme wisely

When first setting up your WooCommerce-enabled website, you’ll be able to choose from hundreds upon hundreds of website themes. Some of these will be better suited to you than others. If the primary function of your site is to sell your products, it’s important to pick a theme that makes this process clear and simple for any visiting customers. 

Make sure your theme is one that showcases your products well, and isn’t too fiddly.

It’s also important to choose a theme that’s SEO-friendly: the pages should link to one another well, images and headings should be displayed prominently, and products should be neatly categorised.

2. Add the right plugins

WooCommerce is itself a plugin for WordPress. Plugins, for those not in the know, are essentially extra tools you can tack onto your website to add new functions and capabilities—in this point, the ability to sell items!

Also Read: Why SEO is actually all about content marketing.

Adding a plugin for WordPress is easy, and you’ll likely already know how to do it: simply log into WordPress, scroll down the menu on the left until you see ‘Plugins’, and from there select ‘Add New’. Here are two we’d recommend:

  • RankMath WordPress SEO – Great for streamlining your SEO to-do list 
  • Google Analytics Pro – Allows you to quickly and easily set up tracking on your site to monitor orders, reviews and more.

3. Choose your site title and tagline wisely

The very first thing you’ll want to do when your site is up and running is to enter a site title, as well as a tagline. You’ll find the option to do this under ‘General Settings’ once you’ve logged into WordPress. Your site title really ought to be your company’s name, however, your tagline is a good opportunity to expand a little on what it is your company does, for example, ‘Educational books for children’.

4. Make sure search engines can find you

You have to actively consent to your website being searchable on the internet. To do this, head to Settings, then Reading, and make sure to uncheck the box that says ‘Discourage search engines from indexing this site’. You want them to index you—this is the process by which search engines assess where your site will sit in their listings for search terms.

Also Read: Does Good Website Design Matter? (Spoiler alert, yes!)

5. Use canonical links

Duplicate content across your site, i.e. big chunks of identical text, is bad for SEO. Search engines assume it’s spam, which means when you’re writing product descriptions—which can be quite repetitive—you need to clarify this. By using the RankMath SEO plugin, you’re able to add a ‘canonical’ link, which tells Google which is your main page if you have duplicated content.

6. Organise your products

Adding categories and tags to each of your products helps you to rank in search engine listings when customers are searching for specific types of product. For example, if you are selling cameras, a customer might search for a specific camera name—leading them to the product directly—or they might use a broader term like ‘digital cameras’. If you optimise your categories pages, you should be able to draw in web traffic to them, from where people can navigate to specific products or browse as they see fit.

7. Add keywords to your product descriptions

Nailing your product descriptions is crucial for good SEO for your WooCommerce site. Of course, it can be a little tricky to write long, engaging descriptions if you’re selling something reasonably self-explanatory, like a glue stick or a bread knife. Spending time on these descriptions is worth the effort however; by getting keywords specific to the products you’re selling into their descriptions, you increase the likelihood of your own products appearing on Google when people are searching for them.

8. Write keyword-optimised meta data

Your page title and meta description are the two bits of information that display on Google when you search for something. When you type, say, ‘bonsai trees’ into Google, you’ll see ten results displayed, each with a little information on what their page is about. The title is the bold heading, and the meta description is the 156-character summary that appears below.

Also Read: Looking for an SEO agency?

Every single page of your WooCommerce site should have keyword-optimised metadata. This means making sure that product-relevant keywords are woven into every single page title and description!

9. Enable breadcrumbs

Breadcrumb links are those handy little links that appear at the top of a page when you’re several categories deep browsing a website—they detail which category or product you’re currently viewing, as well as the steps you took to get there. If you were shopping for a new pair of desert boots on a clothing website, for example, the breadcrumb link would look something like:

Home > Clothing > Mens > Shoes > Desert Boots

Not only are breadcrumbs handy for your visitors, but Google factors them in when indexing your WooCommerce site and deciding where you will rank in their search results.

Of course, this is only an overview of SEO for WooCommerce. There are hundreds of factors to consider if you really want to nail your SEO and take your shop to the top. If you’d like to know more about these—and how we can help your business succeed—get in touch today.

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