If you’re running an e-commerce business – or plan on starting one – SEO is a term you’ll soon learn is crucial to success.
Perfecting your SEO practices will not only increase the traffic to your website, but (if done right) will also improve your profitability.
But not all e-commerce platforms are made equal in terms of SEO, which presents a real dilemma.
Getting curious? Keep reading to find out which is the best e-commerce platform for SEO!
What is SEO?
SEO (search engine optimization) is the process of increasing your website’s traffic by way of improving its ranking in search engine results through the use of specific techniques.
Why is SEO important for e-commerce?
SEO is important for e-commerce because it helps generate more traffic, and thus more leads and more potential sales, to your website. Still not convinced that SEO is a big deal when it comes to your e-commerce business?
Consider these eye-opening stats about SEO:
- 70% of marketers say that SEO is more effective than PPC at generating leads. That’s to say that paying for your website to be advertised alongside search results is not as useful as working on SEO to bring in organic traffic. More leads means more customers, more sales, and more profits.
- Nearly 70% of all clicks made through Google searches are done on the first 5 results on page one. In comparison, less than 4% of clicks come from positions 6-10. If your e-commerce website isn’t getting clicked on, you’re not getting those leads (and somebody else is instead). You want to be in that top 5!
- Roughly 91% of pages on the internet get absolutely no traffic by way of Google search result clicks. The biggest reason for not getting any Google traffic is not having any backlinks in the page’s content (nearly 70%).
- More than 60% of Gen Z survey respondents said they want to search visually for the goods they’d like to buy online. That means that improving your SEO for images is one more crucial step to include in your SEO strategy if you intend on staying in the e-commerce industry.
How to choose the right e-commerce platform for SEO
Certain platforms, such as BigCartel, lack certain important functionalities – like the ability to assign independent meta descriptions to different web pages.
Others such as WooCommerce don’t automatically include standard functions like social media sharing buttons – you’ll have to add a plugin to your e-commerce website builder for those buttons to appear.
Overall, you should take into consideration the following factors when considering which is the best e-commerce platform for SEO for your business:
- Independent Navigation Links
- Independent Page Titles
- Independent Page URLs
- Independent Meta Descriptions
- Independent Image ALT Tags
- Independent H1 Headings
- Canonical URLs
- Integrated Blogging Platform
- Social Sharing buttons
- Auto XML Sitemap
- Use of own Domain Name
- Your Own IP address
- 301 redirects
- Robots Noindex Capabilities
After much research, we found that platforms such as Shopify, 3dCart, Magento and WooCommerce generally cover all of the fundamentals that you’ll need in terms of SEO. But note, there are plenty of alternatives out there! Be sure to do your research and consider the factors listed above so you can choose the best e-commerce platform for SEO suited to your business model.
More information about the factors used in finding the best e-commerce platform for SEO can be found here.
What are the best e-commerce platforms for SEO?
Note: Many of the best e-commerce platforms for SEO still may require you to spend a some money on plugins to get the most out of them. Normally those plugins won’t cost so much – but if you need help covering the expenses to take your SEO up a notch, consider business loans as a viable option.
More and more lenders – including those in the Become online lending marketplace -are starting to see that e-commerce businesses owners are among the most underserved when it comes to e-comm business funding.
Shopify SEO advantages:
- Nearly all tools are built into Shopify including customizable meta titles, meta descriptions, URLs, headings, image alt text, and so on.
- Anything not included in Shopify by default is typically available through Shopify apps.
- Shopify is a platform designed primarily for e-commerce; its SEO functionalities are tailored to the needs of e-commerce businesses.
- Shopify comes with many apps you can use to track SEO or even track your profit/expenses.
Magento SEO advantages:
- All components needed to get your website ranking high on Google are available in Magento.
- Full range of SEO (URL key, meta title, and meta description) for your products built right in – functions that, for some e-commerce platforms, are only available through plugins.
- A product review section is also standard, which can help SEO through a fresh flow of content and more terms that people may find your website by searching for.
3dCart SEO advantages:
- Blog feature allows you to create loads of unique content directly through 3dCart; other e-commerce platforms require you to link external blog URLs (not a good practice for SEO).
- 3dCart automatically makes your website optimized for mobile use.
- Page speed with 3dCart is top-of-the line and follows the best practices as outlined by Google.
WooCommerce SEO advantages:
- Since WooCommerce is actually a free WordPress plugin, you’ll have the power to optimize everything SEO-related.
- All SEO features listed above are available through WordPress – you won’t be missing out on anything.
- With hard-coding you can customize just about any aspect of your e-commerce website while using WordPress and WooCommerce.
BigCommerce SEO advantages:
- With both theme templates as well as the ability to do some hard-coding on your own, BigCommerce makes SEO easy for pros and novices.
- BigCommerce uses ‘cleaner’ URLs, meaning they keep your URLs succinct and accurate. Google doesn’t like long complicated URLs, which makes this a huge perk.
- Automated 301 redirects mean that if you have to edit a product page on your e-commerce website, BigCommerce will automatically rename the URL for you and also redirect the old URL to the new one. That means you won’t lose your Google ranking and your customers will still find you in search results.
The best e-commerce platforms for SEO have been covered, but be sure to stay up-to-date on how those platforms may change in the future. Google’s algorithms also shift and change over time, so what may be the best e-commerce platform for SEO today could very well change.
However you proceed, SEO will remain an key factor for the success of any and every e-commerce business. Don’t underestimate the importance of SEO!