44% of online purchase begins with an online search
The year is 2017 and it was just last year that you invested time and effort to build an online store which has brilliant UI/UX and amazing range of products.
You are excited about the new digital address where your customers can find you now! Having a great online store with peppy collection seems to be what it takes to get customers purchase products from your store. But…The truth boils down to what Ramya feels about your brand!
Let’s get introduced to Ramya…
Ramya represents millennials and she loves shopping online. Her favorite brand is wishforher.com and she is planning to buy a beautiful dress for her birthday. She decides to buy a black cocktail gown. Her obvious choice of brand was wishforher and she types
To her disappointment she does not find any url’s on google that could redirect her to the sub-category with cocktail dresses on wishforher site. Now she decides to visit wishforher online store and types black cocktail dress in the search bar.
Even the search bar does not suggest any products based on keyword search. She starts exploring the online store with categories and sub-categories and gets lost in navigation menu. After browsing the online store for sometime, she finally likes a product and wants to check if it has black as a color option. The product page just shows size variants and she navigates back to sub-category page to find if the colors were available. While she starts looking for color variant of the same product she gets confused with the design she liked and the number of other options she browses through and finally decides to leave the site.
The store actually had a black color variant of the dress Ramya wanted to buy but the bad search functionality and improper product mapping resulted in a lost sale.
Losing a sale is not as bigger a loss as losing a loyal customer!
Are you ready to let go off your loyal customers to the wrong choice of your Ecommerce platform?
Ecommerce is not just about enabling payment on your website but has emerged as critical sales channel to increase brand reach, acquire new customers and improve engagement with customers.
The brand you have built over the years needs an Ecommerce platform which has capability to manage complex catalogue requirements, offer comprehensive SEO capabilities and enable great customer experience.
Catalogue management module is critical to get the product variants, sub-category and category mapped with the right catalogue schema.
The major challenge though is to actually identify which platform offers great SEO features since most of the ecommerce platforms claim to offer great SEO features but actually lack them.
The major features to look for while you check SEO capabilities of a platform are:-
1. Search-Friendly Navigation Structure
The beautiful design of your online store does ensure that the visitors plan to explore the site but planning the right navigation is crucial to actually make them spend time on your online store.
Investing time in getting right categories and sub-categories structure and linking to home page makes it easier for users to navigate. Well planned out site structures have higher probability of ranked better in search engines. Ability to manage navigation menus at the individual link level through admin panel is important.
It is also important to ensure that users can toggle between a product page and category/home page with not more than 2 clicks. This adds to good user experience.
2. SEO friendly URL’s
Configuring the right URL’s with keywords for each page ensures that Google finds, crawls and indexes the content faster. Focusing on internal link architecture and breadcrumbs is also important to feed the search bots with relevant information on indexing the site better.
In case of Ramya and her experience with wishforher, having a SEO friendly URL as mentioned below could have made a huge difference to her shopping experience.
3. 301 Redirects
The biggest advantage of having an online store for brands is the flexibility to experiment with different fabrics, designs and colors and launching new product lines much faster. As a result of this brands keep discontinuing products based on non-performance of a collection or a product line.
Having such flexibility should also be supported by the platform’s capability to redirecting discontinued product pages to new pages.
Most of the ecommerce sites have layered navigation for easy access to different pages with more than one URL. This could result in duplicate content which would hurt the ranking of the site.
A canonical URL indicates search engines that the URLs which seem to be duplicate are actually directed to the same URL and thus the rankings are not affected. Managing the URLs from admin panel makes it easier to manage your site.
5. Content and information driven product pages
With the plethora of online stores selling your brand, it is important that your online brand store presents detailed product information. Having product care information with sizing guides and promoting each collection with videos would help consumers in making an informed decision. Content rich sites are better indexed and ranked on google.
Right ecommerce platform drives the success of your business….
Choosing an Ecommerce platform is critical to success of your business. While a plethora of platforms are available at throwaway price, carefully evaluating them for their ability to manage product catalogue, SEO and content is important.
Investing time and efforts to setting up an online store and realizing later that you are unable to drive traffic or generate any interest in your products because of SEO limitations would be a major setback. It is highly recommended that choice of platform is not solely based on lower cost but considered a long term investment decision.
If you are using a platform which is not delivering on right catalogue management nor on SEO capability, Excellor is a right solution for you. We would migrate your customers and orders on our platform seamlessly and would deliver a great ecommerce store.