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2017 eCommerce Ranking Factors

Lindsey Mink
July 12, 2017 | 10:30 AM

eCommerce ranking.jpgeCommerce continues to take over the world as in-store shopping becomes less popular and online shopping becomes the preferred method. While growth of the eCommerce industry is exciting, it also comes with a lot of change. Whether creating an eCommerce website for the first time or simply updating your current website, it is important to be conscious of new ranking benchmarks.   

A Closer Look at eCommerce Benchmarks 

The business of the Internet is expansive with copious amounts of information and a variety of different websites. While some websites are purely for entertainment or information, many sites are used for eCommerce. A common similarity across all websites is the use of benchmarks. Google uses benchmarks to rank a website’s overall user experience and quality of content. While all websites are compared with ranking factors, they change based on the type of website. We are breaking down the ranking factors used specifically for eCommerce websites.

New vs. Traditional 

While eCommerce has changed over the years, some things have remained the same. We are taking a closer look at new search factors your company should consider and shedding light on traditional ranking factors that are still important. Combining new and basic search factors will give your company the best chance at meeting all of Google’s standards, thus keeping your eCommerce website ranked in the top ten.  

New

Maximum Bullets in List

Bullets equal information. An underestimated search factor many companies overlook is the use of bullet points within a list. eCommerce sites with more bullets tend to rank higher because bullet points result in more information. By offering easy-to-read bullet points filled with relevant content, you are creating an engaging, user-friendly site. Adding more bullet points allows your company to demonstrate their vast knowledge to consumers in a format that doesn’t seem overwhelming. 

Stores Above the Fold

eCommerce is transactional. While it is vital to form relationships with your customers, the foundation of eCommerce remains transactional. Stores above the fold support the transactional nature of eCommerce as you are providing your customers a quick and easy checkout experience. Stores above the fold create less hassle for consumers as everything they need to finalize their purchase is immediately in sight when the page loads. quick and easy checkout experience. Stores above the fold create less hassle for consumers as everything they need to finalize their purchase is immediately in sight when the page loads.

Video Integration

Focus your energy elsewhere. While videos may appear helpful and engaging for consumers, studies show that videos within eCommerce sites are not very effective. This is a result of eCommerce revolving around more straightforward, transactional word choices as opposed to entertainment. Only 35% of eCommerce pages in the top ten search results have embedded videos. Instead of including videos, incorporate pictures or detailed descriptions that allow your customer to simply understand and compare your products with competitors’ products.  

Word Count

eCommerce is about information. Therefore, the more information your site has, the more enticing it becomes. Word count within the eCommerce world becomes increasingly important when creating URLs for your site. URLs with more topic-specific key words tend to translate into higher ranking sites as Google likes to see eCommerce websites with specific URLs. In fact, the URL word count of the top-ranking eCommerce sites is  25% higher than the overall average.  These specific URLs provide an upfront, informative insight onto the topic of a website.

Traditional

Relevant Content

High quality content is the key to both gaining customers and retaining them. No matter what eCommerce factors develop in the coming years, content will always remain king. As a company, you should continue to update your information and provide the most relevant knowledge on your products or services.

Site Speed

Patience is a quality many of us lack. With that being said, it is imperative to have responsive site. A slow site will increase a company’s bounce rate, thus negatively affecting their ranking factors. Up to 40% to consumers will abandon a site that takes more than three seconds to load, and a one second page delay may cost your eCommerce company up to 2.5 million dollars in sales per year. A crucial part of a user-friendly and high ranking website is site speed.   responsive site. A slow site will increase a company’s bounce rate, thus negatively affecting their ranking factors. Up to 40% to consumers will abandon a site that takes more than three seconds to load, and a one second page delay may cost your eCommerce company up to 2.5 million dollars in sales per year. A crucial part of a user-friendly and high ranking website is site speed.  

Backlinks

Backlinks are like social media shares because they both act as support for a company’s website. When your site is linked through multiple different websites or webpages, it shows consumers that you’re knowledgeable and reliable. Having other reputable companies vouch for you will go a long way in gaining consumer trust and showing Google that your information is worth sharing. Backlinks are important ranking factors because they have the power to affect your site’s search visibility and ranking position.

Mobile

Mobile is everything. We can’t say this enough! While creating user-friendly mobile experiences is not a new idea, it remains one of the most important. As eCommerce grows so does consumer mobile usage. Continuing to update your site so it provides the smoothest mobile user experience is key to making sure your company site ranks highly time after time. Sites that are not optimized for mobile will be heavily penalized by Google and given poor reviews from your customer base.

It’s All About Balance

Keeping up with the trends is imperative, as it shows your company’s relevance and dedication to growing with the changing times. However, you should never forget your basics. By combining new ranking factors, such as higher word count, with traditional factors, such as mobile optimization, your site is guaranteed to rank highly and stay in the eyes of current and potential customers.

Have more eCommerce questions? Contact us! 

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