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Improve Your WooCommerce Site’s SEO

Learn how to improve your WooCommerce site’s product page SEO with these simple techniques. We’ll use standard good practice by creating content for human visitors. But we’ll also make the page easy to digest by Google & Microsoft, so your products stand a better chance of scoring high in search results.

Do not cheat – write for humans

The golden rule when trying to improve search performance of any content is that you should not write for search engines… always write for the people who will read your posts, buy your products, or whatever your call-to-action is. If you find yourself stuffing content with keywords and links that are of zero benefit to the viewer, you might get a short term gain… but your site will eventually get punished for “cheating”.

The key to maintaining good search exposure on a site is to build it up steadily. If you create an artificial surge in search exposure by using a clandestine technique, the gain can turn into a loss just as quickly.

Good product content

Creating good content for a product can be difficult because a potential customer is unlikely to read 300 words of useful information. A customer will make a purchasing decision based on:

  • Does the site look modern… is it working, up-to-date and error-free?
  • Is there a picture of the product, and is it what the customer is looking for?
  • Video content – nothing says “yes, I want that” like seeing a video of it being used
  • Is the price right and is it in stock

In a two-second world, visuals are king

List your products in Google Video search results

A great way to expose your products to a wide audience is to get your product pages listed in Google’s Video Search. There are no tricks to doing this and you don’t have to pay any money to Google. All you need to do is have one video on your product page, with the relevant VideoObject schema markup.

InformationSchema markup is just a hidden HTML snippet. You can create these snippets manually, or use a plugin to help you.

Shameless plug

We make a plugin called Power Slider & Product Videos that replaces the WooCommerce product gallery with a responsive image & video slider. If you attach a video to your product gallery, the plugin will automatically create the product schema for you. The nice thing about it? You can host the videos on YouTube too, so it won’t cost you any hosting bandwidth when people view them.

Image and video slider plugin for woocommerce

Trim the taxonomies

By default, Yoast (and probably the other SEO plugins) will add taxonomy and term archives to your sitemap. This can be detrimental to your site’s search exposure…

Imagine you’ve got a site with products grouped by Product Category and Product Tag. The sitemap will contain URLs for things like mysite.com/product-category/wobbly/ and mysite.com/product-category/floppy/. These URLs will be nothing more than collections of product summaries. Nobody will be searching for them, just the individual product pages, so remove the taxonomies from the sitemap.

In Yoast, you just need to go to Search Appearance and set “Show Categories in search results” to “Off”. Do the same for Product Tags, too.

It might seem counter-intuitive to remove things from your sitemap, but it really does help Google to index your site.

Remove product category from sitemap in Yoast
Remove product category from the sitemap

Remove the noise from your sitemap

…and it chimes with the Power Plugins mantra of “do one thing, and do it well”. If your sitemap only has your core content items in it, and it doesn’t have archive page URLs, then Google will know what’s important and useful on your site. You’re not overloading Google with noise.

Get those customer reviews

Make it easy for your customers to leave reviews for your products. Don’t delete bad reviews, either. You’ll always get the odd one-or-two duff reviews but, if your products are good, you’ll get more good reviews than bad ones. Google will pick up on your customer reviews and show them as gold stars in your search results.

UK Gift Aid plugin for WooCommerce SERP
SERP for our UK Gift Aid plugin

Check your product pages with multiple SEO tools

If you’ve got a plugin like Yoast telling you that one product page looks OK, but another product page needs some work to improve its SEO, stand back for a moment. Yoast is analysing the content before it’s been rendered in the browser, so try another tool – there are plenty of free ones out there. We like the Seobility Page Checker. Put your product page URL in there and it’ll scan for errors and suggest opportunities for you. It’s like getting a second opinion, and it’s surprising what’ll pop up.

ImportantAlways use Google Search Console to check that your site is being indexed properly.

In short…

  • write for humans
  • Keep it simple
  • check your products with several SEO tools

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