SEO for e-commerce product pages- The do’s and don’ts

ecommerce product pages
Rosie Johns
by: Rosie Johns
A high-converting product page in the beauty and skincare industry is worth its weight in gold, and knowing how you can improve your product pages for SEO is vital to the success of your brand.

Product page optimisation not only helps increase traffic but helps convert browsers into buyers having a direct impact on sales. 

Of course, in such a competitive market the ultimate goal is to rank in position one on Google, and while driving traffic to the homepage is important, it’s arguably more business-critical to have users land on category and product pages. Therefore, SEO for product pages isn’t something that should be overlooked in a marketing strategy.

This is our guide to SEO for product pages…

Start with keyword research

Any great SEO strategy starts with some extensive keyword research. This will highlight the terms that users are searching. Keyword research gives brands insight into the volumes behind phrases and relevant terms, helping to identify the keywords they should then be using on-page.

Keyword research can also be really useful to rename or brand products. Often it’s appealing to label products using branded terminology, but this can limit organic traffic due to having very little search volume. Therefore, using consumer-generated language, often synonyms of internal jargon, prevents confusion and attracts a wider audience.

Make sure to include keywords in the page’s title tags and product descriptions.

Don’t:

  • Use brand names or branded language that doesn’t make sense to users! Use the consumer-led language the keyword research has discovered.
  • Don’t fixate on volume, relevancy is what’s key.

Optimise your URLs

The keyword research you’ve done will help influence the content of your product pages, including their URLs. URLs are one of the first elements of your product page that consumers see when they’re searching through results pages. So, if your URL looks confusing or doesn’t feature your product name, users are less likely to click through. Make sure you use the same keywords from your metadata in the URL too so they are all targeting the same phrase or words.

Some great examples of well-optimised URLs are: 

  • spectrumcollections.com/collections/skin/products/glowful-primer
  • charlottetilbury.com/uk/product/filmstar-bronze-glow-kit
  • refybeauty.com/collections/refy-brow/products/eyebrow-collection-medium

When optimising your URLs, don’t:

  • Just use brand names or words as your domain will represent that.
  • Fill URLs with SKU numbers or random code that doesn’t mean anything to users. Long or unattractive URLs are off-putting and they don’t index in Google as well because crawlers don’t understand the URL enough to index it correctly.

Meta titles and descriptions

Put your keyword research to good use and use the phrases people are searching for to form your metadata. Metadata is a useful bit of information for both users and search engines and can be the difference between users clicking on your product or scrolling right past.

Your metadata should always include:

  • Product name
  • The relevant keyword/phrase people are searching for
  • An engaging call to action to encourage that click-through
  • An incentive, if relevant (free delivery, sale etc)

The meta title is the first title users see in search results and should always include the product name first. As they’re restricted to 65 characters, you have to include the most important elements first.

A great example of well-optimised metadata for a product page can be seen on Superdrug’s website, for the search term ‘oil cleanser’;

There is an ongoing argument in the SEO industry about the importance of meta descriptions but they’re still visible in search results and should therefore be optimised too (even if they’re not a direct ranking factor).

Use the description to mention the product name, the keyword phrase and anything else you want consumers to action like ‘read more’, ‘find out more about’ or even an incentive offer. Meta descriptions are also restricted to 155 characters, so make sure to include the most valuable information first.

Don’t:

  • Put your brand name first in either meta title or description, apart from on the home page. 
  • Duplicate any of the product titles or descriptions. They should always be unique. 

Duplicating metadata causes issues in search results and has a negative impact on your SEO efforts, so at minimum, every product should have its own title and description.

Use structured data

Marked-up or structured data helps Google crawlers spot and understand what a page’s content is about. Google then serves this information in its search results as rich snippets. Rich snippets are organic results that display content in a particular way in Google.

Using schema can apply the right HTML language to your content that structures or marks up elements for Google to then crawl and understand. All product pages should have product schema which will help with:

  • CTR and ultimately sales
  • Driving higher clicks, impressions and hopefully conversions

A great example of using schema in beauty is from Byrdie.

And another from the search ‘oil cleanser vs foaming cleanser’ shows schema being used on video content.

The schema has bookmarked various points of the video, giving a user the option to find and watch the section they’re most interested in.

If you’re unsure of all the schema markups available, you can find a comprehensive list here.

Don’t:

  • Use structured data solely as a tool for ranking– it doesn’t guarantee a top spot in search, it just organises the information for Google to understand.
  • Use the wrong kind of markup (eg. news instead of video).

Quality on-page content

Another great feature for a well-optimised, high-performing product page is quality on-page copy. Brands often publish product pages that centre around the “Buy Now” button,  overlooking the importance of having great copy alongside it.

Use your keyword research to create FAQs that help answer things people are actively searching for. FAQs often pull through from product pages in search results under ‘people also ask’ so make sure to optimise your on-page content with valuable content like longtail queries. 

If possible, include star-reviews from previous customers to help increase the chances of someone converting too. Product pages are a great place for consumer-generated content to showcase your products so including content like reviews and even Instagram posts can help at the decision-making stage of the buying journey.

Use high-quality product images and video content too to help showcase your products in the best light. A great example of a quality landing page is Beauty Pie’s page for retinol serum as they use a star rating and a very descriptive piece on how to use the product before scrolling down to the ingredients.

Don’t:

  • Use poor-quality imagery
  • Leave product descriptions blank
  • Be too brief or leave out consumer reviews
  • Have broken internal links or poor navigation between product pages

A great call to action

One of the key parts of optimising product pages is a great call to action (CTA )- one of the final steps to convert a potential customer into a paying customer or to encourage them to delve deeper into the site. Calls to action should be catchy, enticing and obvious to get potential customers over the line. This can be anything from optimised copy encouraging a user to buy now before products run out, to a visual which advertises a gift set or add-on products.

CTAs can be positioned anywhere on the page, as long as they’re clear and obvious. A lot of brands A/B test CTAs, changing small elements such as the language used or position on the page. Why not experiment with your call-to-actions to find the right mix for your audiences.

Don’t:

  • Have multiple click-through actions from your CTAs- make it an easy journey
  • Place just one CTA right at the bottom of the page or away from the product
  • Use complex language

A great call-to-action example is Look Fantastic’s homepage CTA which directs you straight to the shop with a discount code (double incentives!)

Optimising product pages is a key part of any good digital strategy and creates longevity for brands as an online presence continues to be an essential part of any marketing strategy. 

Ensuring you optimise all product pages as part of your ongoing strategy means they’re far more likely to gain presence in search, achieve increased CTRs, drive more traffic to your website and ultimately help to convert more consumers.

In a busy e-commerce marketplace, beauty and skincare brands can’t afford to skip optimising their product pages because it means overlooking a major part of their digital potential. If you’re unsure of where to start with reviewing your existing content or want to learn more about how our digital services can help your product pages perform, get in touch with our content marketing team today.

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