A high-converting product page doesn’t just happen. If you’re looking to outperform typical e-commerce conversion rates, you need to be meticulous with your site as a whole and product pages in particular.
Why is product page optimization so important? Because you want these pages to not only rank for relevant search terms, but also meet user intent, provide clear information, and convert visitors into customers.
Product Page Best Practices
Optimizing your product pages can be overwhelming when you consider it as one big lift, even more so if you are an e-commerce website selling hundreds or thousands of products. The best way to tackle the project is by breaking it into a checklist for each page.
1. Title Tag and Metadata
The title tag and metadata are key components of search engine results pages (SERPS). They double in assisting both Google and the user; Google uses them to show search results, and users read them to decide whether a page is providing the information or offer they are seeking.
These features should include clear, action-oriented language, front loading the most important information before the character cutoff. In the title tag, separate the product name, your brand name, and perhaps an additional message (such as “Free Shipping,” or “Order Online”) with a pipe symbol ( | ) and a space on each side.
2. H1 Tag
<h1>Example H1 Tag</h1>
Like the title tag and metadata, the H1 tag is a critical element for SEO (Learn more on how SEO works). It indicates a heading on a web page. In many cases, the H1 may be the same as the title tag, but you still need to enter them separately on the backend of your site in order to get the SEO benefit. You will see tags for H2, H3, and so on.
Don’t let them confuse you; focus on H1 and use it to describe your product in 20-70 characters. You’ll see while typing how short that is, and thus, how concise you need to be.
3. Alt Image Tag
<img src="pupdanceparty.gif" alt="Puppies dancing">
“Alt” stands for “alternative” text, which is used to give images SEO value. Many e-commerce owners miss this step altogether, so that means you can gain ground by tagging your images appropriately.
The simple rule of thumb here is to describe your image—preferably using a relevant keyword—so that a user could understand what the image depicts without actually seeing it. The text will appear if an image fails to load in a search result, and also helps visually impaired users who may be using a screen reader.
4. Product Description
An effective e-commerce description explains the product and embodies the brand. Write better product descriptions by using natural language and sprinkling in keywords for SEO. Remember to include the benefits to the customer, and not just the features of the product. If you notice that your description is running long, consider breaking it into sections with subheads so that users can easily scan the content.
Even the greatest product description ever written needs accompanying eye candy. Professional photography shows your products in a positive light and complements your written product descriptions, while subpar imagery can cause users to perceive the products themselves poorly. What constitutes quality photography? A few guidelines from Growcode:
- High-resolution and zoomable – High-resolution images clearly show product features and designs and look professional. Allow customers to zoom into pictures to inspect details.
- Show the most important product features – Include photos dedicated to items’ most important features, like the soles of shoes and control panels on electrical products.
- “Swipeable” on mobile – Mobile users instinctively swipe photos. Enable this feature.
- Include model details alongside images – Show models’ measurements so that customers can see if a particular size is suitable for them.
If you have the resources to create video content, even better.
If a product has different colors or variations, simplify the user experience by implementing a toggle feature that shows previews on one main product page. Users appreciate this shortcut sparing them from having to click and load one page after another just to see the same product in a different style. You can and should still have separate product pages for each, but they don’t need to be part of the buyer journey once someone lands on one.
7. Manufacturers’ Specs
E-commerce retailers will often paste manufacturers’ descriptions into their product descriptions—a mistake for several reasons:
- If the manufacturer has the description on their own site, yours might be picked up by Google as duplicate content, which hurts SEO.
- Many manufacturers’ descriptions are dry and technical.
- You lose your brand essence.
You know what people need to know about your product, and you can gain even greater insight by surveying your customers. Take the time to write your own product descriptions! If you must include manufacturers’ specs, be sure to tag them as canonical and attribute them to the manufacturer’s site where the content lives to avoid duplicate content. A canonical tag happens in the backend and is not visible to users.
8. Google Shopping
Your best-performing keywords—meaning those with the highest click-throughs and conversions—are prime candidates to designate on Google Shopping, the tab users click when they know exactly what they want to buy but are unsure of where to find it. As such, this area of Google tends to have higher conversions than standard SERPs and text pay-per-click ads.
Pairing keywords that you know convert with high-quality product pages and the high-converting nature of Google Shopping can be a winning strategy for sales.
9. Schema Markup
If you have ever typed your flight into Google while traveling and loved that all of the info was displayed right there in the first result, you already appreciate Schema without realizing what it is. Moz explains:
“Schema.org (often called Schema) is a semantic vocabulary of tags (or microdata) that you can add to your HTML to improve the way search engines read and represent your page in SERPs.
Adding Schema markup to your HTML improves the way your page displays in SERPs by enhancing the rich snippets that are displayed beneath the page title.”
E-commerce brands can use snippets of Schema code to show star ratings and other reinforcers within search results. Quick visuals build trust and credibility, resulting in more clicks and a more willing customer arriving to the site.
If you’re an e-commerce owner, you probably know the importance of customer reviews—but we’re going to mention them anyway because they really are crucial. Selling a product online is inherently challenging; positive reviews give social proof and help customers overcome the psychological hurdle of wondering whether the product will live up to expectations. If you have negative reviews, be sure to address them publicly and provide helpful customer service.
11. User-Generated Content
When you’re in the habit of managing and showcasing user reviews, you can take it a step further and source user-generated content. A picture of someone wearing their new shoes humanizes your brand for new customers, and empowers current customers to be ambassadors. User-generated content typically happens on social media, which is why you’ll see many brands include social media feeds on their websites.