It seems obvious to say that excellent product pages should have two characteristics: they should appeal to your customer and be optimally tuned for SEO. It’s simple in theory, but a little trickier to put theory into practice. A product page is like any other content page in terms of SEO, but it’s the crucial moment when your customer decides to make a purchase. Cultivating trust requires a smooth user experience, consistency in design and layout, and well-indexed reviews and product information that will make it easy for your customer to find exactly what they need, as fast as possible.
Get the basics right
User experience is paramount. You’ll need a captivating title that showcases the product name, being as specific as is comfortable and appropriate. Product descriptions should be unique – don’t use the manufacturer’s content as this will appear all over the web (i.e. it’s duplicate content).
The word count is not as important as the relevance; spend time considering what your customer actually wants to know about this product. What’s the shelf life? Which colours, sizes or types are available and what are the different prices? Is assembly required? What’s included in the package? Is it compatible with other products? Can you think of creative, suggested uses your customer hasn’t? Is there a seasonal or time-limited aspect? Your description should speak to your customer’s desires and offer concrete, appealing solutions they can imagine in their own lives.
Finally, don’t forget a meta description, also unique, or risk Google defaulting to using strange text. Bullet lists, proper paragraphing and videos will go a long way. Your URL should be simple to remember, and your images should be high quality with ALT text, so you appear better in visual searches.
Structure your data using the “Product” schema in your page code will make sure you appear with rich results. Do the same with the “Review” or “Rating” schema. This means that search engines will be able to recognise the key elements of product pages, index them properly, and generate rich snippets in search results that clearly show price, star rating, number of reviews, stock availability etc. This is great for users and shapes their expectations of your product before they even land on your page.
Optimise category pages
Customers are most likely to search for board, category level terms than more specific items. In any ecommerce page hierarchy, category pages rank highly, yet they may be the least optimised because they have the least content. An expert team can help you do the keyword research necessary for category-level SEO.
Check on your site speed
It’s a shame to spend so much effort and money to get a customer to click on your page only to have them wander off when they feel they’ve waited too long for it to load. Page loading speed is easy to overlook, but every second matters. Check with your SEO team to see whether site speed could be hindering your SEO efforts, and find ways to fix it.
Make sure your reviews are up to scratch
Customers love reviews. Most will put enormous weight into the number and quality of a product’s reviews. Actively court reviews from buyers and put the reviews you have front and centre. A negative review is a blessing in disguise: reach out to the user and see how you can solve the issue, and possibly convert them into a positive rating. At the very least, customers enjoy seeing a genuine and thoughtful response to any valid criticism – perhaps even more so than they trust uniformly excellent ratings!
Conduct user testing to see how people interact with your page
Your user experience may be worse than you think. The Baymard Institute released a study showing that the average site has a whopping 24 structural UX issues, with most earning only “poor” or “mediocre” UX ranking. Poor images, out of date or irrelevant shipping information, image inconsistencies and the like erode trust and credibility.
Scanning your Google Analytics data will help you understand how people are finding and navigating around your pages, but an expert SEO team can help you really dig into the details of your typical user’s experience and how it could be improved. You might like to switch to search terms and descriptions more favoured by your customers or reword FAQs.
As part of your routine site audit (i.e. checking your sitemap, structure, internal links, breadcrumbs, design, UX, overall SEO performance etc.), it’s worth taking the time to fine-tune your product page SEO.