Keyword research for eCommerce business is like the foundation of its SEO strategy.
eCommerce SEO covers a lot of things but it is mainly about telling Google and other search engines what your brand is about and what you sell.
Keywords play a major role in making sure that the search engines perfectly understand your business and show your online store to people whenever they make relevant searches.
Keyword research for eCommerce business is simply the art of understanding the keywords and phrases that your potential customers are using in order to find the products that you sell, then matching your site and marketing terminology.
In this guide, we will be covering all the important aspects of keyword research for the eCommerce business. Let’s have a look at a few important terms first:
Search Volume – It is the total number of searches for a keyword in a month. A high search volume would mean that a lot of people are searching for the specific keyword and hence the potential for more traffic and conversion for you.
Keyword Competition – It is important to go after search volume but only with consideration for the competition. The higher the competition the tougher it would be to rank on the first page. Go after keywords with comparative high search volume but low competition.
Search Relevance – Even after you find keywords with the perfect combination of high search volume and low competition, it wouldn’t give great results if they don’t have search relevance. The keywords would need to be highly relevant to your business and niche, and only then would the visitors have an actual interest when they land up on your online store.
Let’s look at a few tips to optimize keyword research for eCommerce business.
1. Determine Where You Rank In Relevant Search
Before making informed decisions about your keyword strategy, it is important for you to determine where exactly do you rank in the relevant keyword search. You can find that out with the help of SEO tools.
For example, Ahrefs is a great tool that provides an effective Rank Tracker feature. You can look at its performance report to identify which keywords are you exactly ranking for and your average position.
By regularly checking on your search rankings, you will be able to improve such content that is dropping in average ranking positions. Dropped rankings are like early warnings that tell you to make updates to preserve your spot on the SERPs.
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2. Study Your Competitors
Ranking in search is all about beating your competition and overtaking them in the search results.
Keyword research for eCommerce business would need you to determine how much work you need to do to stay at the top of your game by keeping a track of your competitors.
Here are a few things that you can look out for during your competitor research process:
- Specific keywords that they are going after
- Page authority required to rank at par with them
- Domain authority to understand the power of their domain
- Source of their backlinks to get ideas for guest posting or other collaborations
SEMRush is a great tool for studying your competitors.
By just putting in a URL you can find out metrics such as organic search volume, paid search volume, organic traffic over time, number of backlinks, traffic by geographic channels, and referring domains and IP addresses.
The tool also provides you with a list of related keywords that users input in their search bar, identifying sites that are similar to yours based on seed keywords.
It’s especially very helpful when you are trying to find out who your competitors are exactly.
The tool also provides you with unique and common keywords for up to five domains, and also the level of difficulty to rank against the keywords your competitor is using.
One of their best features is the Keyword Magic Tool that can give you access to over 2 million keyword ideas for your keyword research for eCommerce business.
3. Use Long-Tail Keywords
Short-tail keywords are usually very broad and spread out so much that it gets highly difficult to rank on them. A better option is to use long-tail keywords that help you in outshining within your niche with the use of the best possible keywords.
Optimize your blog posts or product pages for long-tail keywords, so that even if lesser traffic lands, their purchase intent is high.
High intent keywords are relatively simple keywords with high commercial intent, signifying a higher chance of the user to take some action.
Let’s look at the different kinds of search intents in regards to SEO:
Informational Intent – Keywords with informational intent signify that a user is looking for some specific information and needs answers to their queries.
These keywords fall under the ‘I want to Know’ or ‘How to’ type of searches and place users at the top of the funnel.
Even though optimizing these kinds of keywords might not lead to a sale immediately, they do represent ways to engage with potential customers early in their buying process.
Using keywords that optimize for informational intent is best for positioning your business as an authority.
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Investigational Intent – An investigational search lies somewhere between informational and transactional search.
Even if users searching for these keywords are not immediately ready for purchase, they would still be ahead of the users searching for keywords with an informational intent in the sales funnel.
When comparing prices or product features, or expanding knowledge by doing research, people mostly engage in an investigational search.
By optimizing your content for these keywords you can convince your potential customers that you are better than your competition.
Transactional Intent – Transactional searches are done when a customer is ready to make their purchase.
These include keywords with a high commercial intent such as buy, price, free shipping, for sale, discount, where to buy, review, and so on.
Depending on your industry or brand, very specific keywords could also fall in this like, coffee maker, winter clothing, Samsung Galaxy S10+, iPhone 12, etc. Use these kinds of keywords to optimize your website for direct conversion.
Finally, you can build an editorial calendar with a well-defined strategy that optimizes keywords not just for one but for each type of intent.
Rather than optimizing just for transactional intent keywords, you can drive better sales by targeting people at different stages of their buyer’s journey by optimizing all the kinds of keywords.
Keyword research for eCommerce business is an essential foundational step for developing a strong eCommerce SEO strategy. If done well, it can provide useful direction regarding what kind of strategies and tactics to employ.
The best way for going about your keyword research for eCommerce business is to do it from two vantage points: one from your own perspective, and another by spying on your competitors.
Focusing on different metrics such as search volume, keyword competition, and search relevance will only give you more accurate results.