WooCommerce SEO Guide 2022: Ultimate Guide To Rank Your WooCommerce Store

Table of Contents

Your WooCommerce store is up and running. But it lacks traffic, no visits, and it is not getting many sales.

The competition intensifies as more and more businesses are going online, making it harder for your e-commerce store to show up on the first page of Google search results. 

You have heard that SEO is a great way to attract customers to your online store.

So, how do you help your WooCommerce store rank in search engines and gain more customers?

There is no secret technique when it comes to SEO. It all boils down to having a systematic process.

In this complete WooCommerce SEO guide, you will learn the exact steps that will help you in optimising your WooCommerce store to drive more organic traffic and boost your rankings on search engines.

Getting started with our WooCommerce SEO guide

To get the most out of this guide, you need to have some basic knowledge about WordPress and WooCommerce.

This will help you to understand the various settings needed in this guide.

What is SEO?

If your business has recently moved your brick and mortar store online, it is important to understand what SEO is and why it matters to your online store.

Traffic is the lifeblood of an online store. And search engines are a great source of traffic as they direct searchers with high buying intent to your website.

Search engine optimisation, in short SEO, is the process of improving your website to get more traffic from the organic results in search engines.

Why is SEO important for your WooCommerce store?

Here comes the million-dollar question.

So, why is SEO critical to your WooCommerce store?

Ranking well in organic listing builds trust.

Unlike paid ads, individuals see organic search results as more trusted. Many find that to rank well on Google you need to “earn” the position. In contrast, advertisers using search ads can rank instantly as long as they are paying.

A consistent, well-defined content to all of your channels will lead you to earn your customer’s trust. It will leave a positive impression on your customers when they see that you provide a better user experience and a clean website.  

People search for information online about their desired products or services. Giving them something of value by providing reliable resources helps you earn their trust!

Organic traffic offers a stable stream of traffic and sales.

Unlike paid traffic, SEO gives consistent inbound traffic to your online store without worrying about how deep your pocket is.

Paid traffic dries up when you stop or decrease your media investment.

Increases site usability and user experience

The more you want to ensure a high-level user experience, the more your online store needs SEO. 

SEO includes rearranging the site’s architecture and links to ensure pages within your websites are easy to crawl for search engines, more navigable for users, and provides reliable resources. 

Offers measurable results

Similar to other digital marketing channels, SEO offers measurable results too. Every entrepreneur wants a return on investment. 

Google Analytics and Google Search Console allow you to track the increase in your website’s traffic, search rankings, and conversions. Every aspect of your SEO performance

The power of compounding effect of SEO

Yes, SEO is a long term investment. It enjoys what we call the compounding effect just like making a financial investment. SEO is the best channel to see the effects of compounding within marketing.

What this means is that as your website generates traffic from search engines, like Google, it continues to accrue the positive signs that will allow you to attract even more traffic as time goes on – the effect of compounding.

traffic data from Google Analytics

Over time, your website will accumulate natural links, good user experiences that feed into search visibility and broader deeper indexing as Google’s AI improves. At the same time, it will also grow at a natural rate of more people using Google and the Internet, just like inflation.

The best time to invest in SEO is six months before you need it. But it is impossible to know when this time will arrive. Again like investing, a little bit of effort now is better than no effort at all. Therefore, the best time to invest in SEO is now!

Is WooCommerce SEO-friendly?

The big answer is “yes”. WooCommerce has tons of SEO-friendly features and plugins for you to optimise your website.

Making it a suitable eCommerce platform to integrate your SEO strategy.

When we say SEO-friendly, it does not mean your WooCommerce store will automatically rank higher on the SERP.

It simply comes with either built-in features or expands its feature with plugins that support SEO implementations.

WooCommerce versus Shopify

A battle between two eCommerce giants, WooCommerce and Shopify, are two goliaths in the eCommerce space. Weighing who works best and performs better is a challenge to all users. This part of the article will see the different features that make each one a competent choice for your online store. 

eCommerce market share

The data released by Statista in April 2021 revealed that WooCommerce ranked second to Squarespace Online Stores as the worldwide leading e-commerce software platform in 2021, with a market share of 23.43%. On the other hand, Shopify ranked 5th with a market share of 3.69%. 

market share of leading e-commerce software platforms

When picking an eCommerce platform, you don’t get something out of popularity. However, it is interesting to know which technology powers most online stores and leads the worldwide ranks for one of the most reliable software.

Approaches

Just like in any platform, WooCommerce and Shopify have their own sets of core approaches in creating and managing your online store.

WooCommerce operates as a self-hosted eCommerce platform that allows users to modify everything on their stores depending on what fits their current requirement because all pertinent files on your server are accessible. 

On the contrary, Shopify is a hosted platform. It takes care of everything for you, from domain registration to website hosting. Though you can still make changes as you see fit for your Shopify store, Shopify still regulates and controls what you can do to a certain extent. 

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Out of the first two items mentioned above, this part weighs more when deciding which platform to use.

To better analyse how two platforms work for SEO, we will look at Apps and Plugins for SEO, Auto XML Sitemap, SSL Certificates, and 301 Redirects as vital criteria. 

Since WooCommerce roots from a blogging platform, it runs with a WordPress editor advantageous for retailers as it offers multiple plugins. This feature lets them modify essential content, URL redirections, meta descriptions, Alt tags, and other web page components that are integral for page optimisation. 

Due to some restrictions set, Shopify users don’t have much freedom to alter their URLs or modify some elements of their site. Though this looks like a drawback, optimising your Shopify store for SEO is still very much possible.

Similar to WooCommerce, Shopify’s ecosystem of Shopify SEO apps has grown over the years. They can help you to execute your SEO implementations quickly and easily.

Ease of use

Since WooCommerce and WordPress require self-hosting, it provides more flexibility in terms of content management and customisation.

Users gain full control of the entire online store, from selecting the CDNs to setting the cache level for speed optimisation. Thanks to WordPress, WooCommerce enjoys over 59,000 plugins that offer endless possibilities. However, with more controls, it comes with a higher demand for technical knowledge for you to set it up.

In contrast, Shopify handles most of the initial setup for you. They priced in, hosting and CDN with their monthly subscription.

If you are a beginner, you will love Shopify more because it does most of the heavy lifting for you. But as you progress in your SEO implementation for your Shopify store, you will definitely face some roadblocks.

Some common Shopify SEO issues include:

  1. Inability to edit tag pages
  2. Duplicate content
  3. Duplicate page titles
  4. Forced URL structure
  5. Locked robots.txt
  6. No customisation of pages
  7. Limits on page titles and meta descriptions
  8. Poor initial template selection

Check out our Shopify SEO guide for the exact steps you can take to overcome them.

Cost

Cost influences one’s decision-making as to whether to take or not software for their website. It is only suitable to evaluate the price you will spend versus the benefits these platforms will provide you in the long run.

For Shopify, it offers the following plans for your eCommerce store – Shopify Lite, Basic Shopify, Shopify and Advanced Shopify, with the cheapest plan, starting at $9 per month.

Here’s a breakdown of each plan’s pricing solutions: 

  • The Lite Plan – starts at $9 per month and allows you to sell on your existing social media sites. 
  • Basic Shopify Plan – costs $29 per month
  • Shopify Plan – costs $79 per month
  • Advanced Shopify Plan – costs $299 per month 
  • Shopify Plus – an enterprise plan which price at around $2000 per month
shopify plan

For WooCommerce, many of you already know that it is FREE because it is a WordPress plugin. However, you need to have a budget for the following:

  • Hosting: might require you around $5-$25/ month
  • Your domain: about $12/year
  • Extras for premium theme: ~$59
  • Premium Plugins and extensions: start from $25 each
  • And some developer fees.

You might not need all of the features that come with this pricing, as it may vary depending on your goal. It is wise to check each offer before purchasing it to avoid unnecessary complications. 

Payment methods accepted or payment gateways.

The core of your online business is the processing of payments regardless of what product or services you offer. The main goal of ensuring you have sturdy, reliable payment centres is to fulfil your transactions with your customers.

Shopify and WooCommerce offer a wide variety of payment options that fits your eCommerce business.

Shopify’s payment gateways

Shopify boasts a payment gateway that demands zero configurations. Aside from its payment gateway, it supports third-party payment methods like PayPal, Stripe, and Authorize.Net. Shopify has a long list of local payment gateways available depending on which country or the region you set up your store. 

WooCommerce’s payment gateways

This WordPress plugin offers PayPal and Stripe payment methods by default. Since the WooCommerce team does not set many restrictions, any payments company, regional or even the less popular ones, can set up add-ons for it.

Big payment companies like PayPal Pro, Braintree, Stripe, and Authorize.net CIM offer their payment processing to the Woocommerce platform to give your brand a professional business look. 

Support options

WooCommerce Support team

WooCommerce, as an open-source eCommerce solution, doesn’t cater to live chat, phone, or email type of assistance to its users. The team provides plenty of helpful resources on their website, accessible to their WooCommerce Docs and Frequently Asked Questions section.

Due to its popularity, it created a community of developers or WooExperts. They aid in whatever unwanted situation you are stuck into.

Shopify Support Team

On the other hand, Shopify provides a 24/7 live chat, phone, email, and Twitter customer support. The team created a directory of Shopify Experts that you can readily hire if you need an extra hand to troubleshoot your store’s issues. If you want to get things done yourself, you may check their how-to blogs, video tutorials, forums, and knowledge base documentation. 

Security

Security will always be one of your biggest concerns when running everything online. Indeed, you will partner with platforms that will deliver transparent and quality data protection for you and your customers. 

WooCommerce’s Security

With WooCommerce, most of the security falls in your own hands. In greater detail, you will have to get your SSL certificate, configure your site security plugins, two-factor authentication, PCI compliant, and some other things to protect your site, all by yourself.

As mentioned, WooCommerce is an open-source platform; thus, this will require you to move on your own. This means the safety of your online transactions and journey lies in your hands. You must secure the following: SSL certificate, site security plugins configuration, two-factor authentication, and a PCI compliant – the most basic way to protect your site. 

Shopify’s Security

If you run a Shopify-backed site, you can agree that this platform completely handles all security issues as a hosted eCommerce solution. It contains a built-in SSL certificate and runs on a Level 1 PCI compliant server, ensuring that data exchanges between you and your clients are safe, encrypted, and secured.

Regarding security matters, Shopify outranks WooCommerce.

What does an SEO plugin do?

On WordPress, a plugin adds features and extends the functionality to their WordPress site without having to code.

An SEO plugin allows you to implement SEO changes without the need to hire a developer.

Some of the most common features an SEO plugin enables are:

  • Update or customise the page title, meta descriptions, and image Alt text.
  • Setup or edit robots.txt and htaccess file
  • Generate XML sitemap
  • Set up robots meta tags, redirection and schema.org markup

Understanding the role of SEO plugins in a WordPress website

Installing SEO plugins on your WooCommerce store does not mean you have implemented an SEO strategy already.

SEO plugins only help you with SEO implementations.

They do not automatically optimise your store and rank it higher. It still depends on the effort, consistency, and commitment you invest for it to work.

It allows you to implement SEO changes easily and quickly, even if you are not a developer. However, it still requires you to have a good knowledge of SEO before you start your setup.

When you set up your SEO plugin’s settings wrongly, it does more harm to your online store than good, which can cause your ranking to drop.

Some SEO implementations you can carry out:

Generate XML sitemaps

XML sitemaps contain a list of pages on your website. You can choose to include and exclude pages depending on their SEO “value”.

Imagine a building directory. An XML sitemap serves as a directory for search engine crawlers to find pages that are available on your website easily.

Generating and submitting your online store’s sitemap is critical because it helps pages on your website to get discovered and indexed faster. It also allows crawlers to understand your site structure. A page that is not found and indexed will not rank no matter how “optimised” it is.

XML sitemaps are useful for your WooCommerce stores, especially if

  • it contains thousands of pages 
  • there are frequent pages updates 
  • It has a deep site architecture 
  • It constantly updates content on an existing page
  • It lacks strong or includes weak internal linking
xml sitemap setting on wordpress

Edit robots.txt file

A robot.txt is a set of instructions given to search engine crawlers. It instructs them how to crawl web pages on their website, how to treat links and manage crawler traffic to your site. 

Example of a robots.txt file with two rules or instructions:

robots.txt setting on wordpress

The example illustrates the following: 

User-agent refers to search engine crawlers, such as Googlebot. It is not allowed to crawl any URL that falls on this address /wp-admin/.

Lastly, it indicates that the sitemap is accessible at

https://www.rootsdigital.com.sg/sitemap_index.xml.

You may update robots.txt now via the plugin without the need to access your website’s hosting server. 

edit your robots.txt directly on wordpress

Edits htaccess file

Aside from editing your robots.txt file, an SEO plugin can also allow you to update or modify your .htaccess file.

An .htaccess file on WordPress controls how your server runs your website. This special configuration can control your WordPress site’s 301 redirects, SSL connections, password protection, the default language, and many more.

One crucial role the htaccess file plays is providing commands, controls, and configuring the Apache webserver – this is where you host your site and thousands of other sites as well.

Your .htaccess permits your site to be unique in terms of setting up redirections, denying access to sensitive files, preventing hotlinking, and blocking IP addresses, to name a few.

edit .httaccess

Setup redirects rules

A redirect is a way to send both users and search engines crawlers to a different URL from the one they originally requested.

You use a redirect when you want to: 

  • When a product is temporarily out of stock. You will need to set up a 302 redirect, commonly known as a temporary redirect, to avoid losing a potential customer.
  • When you decide to discontinue a product. You will need to set up a 301 redirect or a permanent redirect.
  • Delete content and retain its SEO value
redirection setting on wordpress
What are the different types of redirects?
301 or  “Moved Permanently”

A 301 redirect is a permanent moving of a page from one location to another. The 301 refers to the HTTP code of the redirected page.

Example: blog.rootsdigital.com.sg redirects to rootsdigital.com.sg/blog/

This only means that 301 is sending a message to the browser that it moved the page to a different location for good. So, if you wish to visit blog.rootsdigital.com.sg, you will end up at  rootsdigital.com.sg/blog/ instead.

302, “Found” or “Moved Temporarily” 

You use this type of redirect if you temporarily move a website or a webpage to a new site because you are in the middle of a website update or redesign. 

This is also applicable if you want to test out a new page.  Unlike 301, you have the intention to bring the old page back once you have settled all changes taking place in your site. This means that it will not affect your original page’s ranking, traffic value, and authority.  

This ensures that Google indexed your page or website, and no transfer to the new URL happens because it is aware this is only temporary.  

Meta Refresh

Meta refreshes are redirects made from ‘page level’ other than the usual ‘server level’. Others refer to this also as a client-side redirect.  You may associate this type of redirect with a five-second countdown and a text “if you are not redirected in five seconds, click here.”

Meta refresh is not a recommendable SEO tactic due to its poor usability, loss of link equity, and slower execution. 

A meta refresh might look like this:

<http-equiv=”refresh” content=”0; url=https://example.com/”>

Source: Moz

Monitor 404 errors

One of the advantages of having a WooCommerce SEO plugin for your store is ensuring you track non-existent content or pages on your online store.

404 pages

These are the four main causes that trigger 404 errors: 

  1. Mistyped or malformed links
  2. Broken internal links
  3. Old inbound links
  4. Systemic errors

Aside from frustrating your online shoppers, 404 errors eat into your crawl budget too. Search engines crawlers are being directed to crawl more invalid URLs than valid ones, wasting resources.

Crawlers may not be getting to your valid and important content, preventing them from being discovered or indexed. This can definitely hurt indexing and ranking over time.

Edit page title, meta description and image Alt text

This is one of the most common features offered by any popular SEO plugin in the market.

Using an SEO plugin, you can set up your preferred format for page titles and meta descriptions across all the pages on your WooCommerce site.

For example, in Rank Math, you can edit your page title for all pages in one sitting without the trouble of going through all pages and updating them one by one.

Before you start editing your page titles and meta descriptions, you first need to carry out a thorough e-commerce keyword research in order to know what keyword themes you should be targeting. Do optimise your website blindly before knowing what you should or should not optimise.

edit page titles on rankmath

Add schema.org markup

Creating and adding schema.org markups to your website or page can be a daunting task if you are new to SEO.

An SEO plugin can allow you to add or select the right schema type based on your content without needing you to key in a single line of code. There is a wide range of options provided for you to choose from.

add schema on wordpress

Set robots meta tags

Just like the robots.txt file mentioned previously, setting your robots no index meta tag is another way to prevent search engine spiders from crawling and indexing your online store.

SEO plugins allow you to instruct search engines crawlers on which URLs they should exclude from the search results using the noindex tag or prevent them from valuing links from a page using the nofollow tag without demanding you to code it manually.

Set Robots Meta Tag

Although plugins ensure that you implement your SEO strategies smoothly and quickly, we still want to recommend having a person that has a deep knowledge of SEO perform these implementations to your site. 

Having proper SEO knowledge gives you a better insight into what you must do or not in your online store. Other than meddling the settings wrongly, consult specialists first to avoid hurting your SEO performance.

Look beyond your SEO plugin’s scoring.

There is nothing wrong with checking your SEO plugins score to see what is inaccurate with your site, but you have to keep in mind that this does not capture your site’s SEO performance entirely so, you must not depend on it.

The scores provided by your SEO plugins can be an efficient diagnostic tool for your online store but not a good performance measurement tool to use.

SEO score by rankmath

SEO plugins scoring works based on certain rules set by themselves. Meaning you will get a high score if part of your condition matches the plugin’s rules.

For instance, Yoast and Rank Math will give you a high score by simply having a key phrase in your subheading’s content.

SEO score by Yoast SEO
SEO insight from rankmath

As you know, SEO is more than just having keyphrases. It involves a lot of things to rank and gains traffic online.

Don’t get blinded by the data you get from these plugins, as they serve as guides that you must carefully interpret and not take in at face value to avoid being complacent and executing the wrong strategy. 

most recommended SEO plugin

There are thousands of SEO plugins accessible online and can work best for you. In this article, we will feature the top three WordPress plugins we recommend that will help you in optimising your WooCommerce store.

Rank math

Rank Math SEO plugin

Rank Math SEO is one of the most trusted SEO plugins on the web right now. It was first launched in 2018 in New Delhi, India. Its founders, Bhanu Ahluwalia, Nimit Kashyap, and Suraj Vibhute, believe in making WordPress SEO less hassle and more fun. 

At present, Rank Math has 28 plus team members with more than 1.1 million active users worldwide. Here are some of the features that make Rank Math a Swiss Army Knife of WordPress SEO:

  • XML sitemaps, 
  • Internal linking recommendations, 
  • 404 monitoring, 
  • Redirects,
  • Local SEO, 
  • Rich snippets, and 
  • Image SEO

This plugin is not only user-friendly but also budget-friendly. Rank Math has a flexible pricing solution for all your needs depending on your budget.

Rank Math Plan

Yoast SEO

Yoast SEO plugins

Another popular SEO plugin is Yoast. We are sure you have heard about this or seen advertisements regarding this WordPress plugin, as it has been in the digital market for over a decade.

Joost de Valk is the man behind this company. He gave up his SEO consultant job and founded Yoast in 2010. Yoast headquarters is in  Wijchen, Netherlands.

You might be surprised to know that the word Yoast is not an SEO term or an acronym but is how you pronounce Joost’s name in Dutch. As of 2020, the team grows to more than 140 employees and continues to serve its mission to ensure that ‘your site meets the highest technical SEO standards.’ 

Here are some of Yoast SEO’s best features: 

  • page previews on different platforms, 
  • suggestions for internal linking, 
  • redirect management options, 
  • 24/7 support line, and 
  • offers full access to all Yoast SEO academy training courses.

In Yoast SEO, you may choose your pricing plans.

Yoast SEO plan

However, one downside we don’t like about Yoast SEO is to unlock more SEO features specific to WooCommerce optimisation, you need to pay more for an add on, which costs an additional $79 per year. This cost adds up if Yoast requires you to subscribe to their base SEO plugin and the add on.

Though they have an option to get the bundle, which costs a whopping $145 per year, you can get the same feature with Rank Math’s Pro plan at only $59 per year for an unlimited personal website.

All in one SEO pack

All in One SEO plugins

All in One SEO was previously an All in One SEO pack before Syed Balkhi acquired the plugin in 2020. His goal was simple, to make SEO easy for beginners. 

AIOSEO is run by some of the big names in the industry, like WPBeginner, OptinMonster, WPForms, and MonsterInsights. 

The company headquarters is in West Palm Beach, Florida, United States. As of writing, there are almost two million users who have installed this plugin because of its dashboard – clean and easy to navigate. 

If you check their site, you may notice that it is most similar to Yoast SEO but what sets them apart is the interface and pricing options they offer for organisations of different sizes.

It boasts the following features: 

  • smart SEO schema markup, 
  • advanced SEO modules, 
  • powerful SEO sitemap suite, 
  • local SEO module, and 
  • Google AMP SEO.

Check out AIOSEO pricing solutions and see what works best for you. 

AIO SEO plan

If you have heard the news, AIOSEO faced a security issue previously that affected almost more than 3 million users. The backlash came when they set the automatic update feature to default. 

Automatic update features allow the plugins to automatically update without the publisher’s consent. The problem with this is that it leaves no choice for site owners to back up their files and could not revert if it happens to be a bad update or something is wrong with it. 

The publishers of AIOSEO apologised for this after getting negative feedback online. 

Tips when choosing the right SEO plugins

There are more than one thousand plus SEO related plugins available in the WordPress directory that can help you with your SEO tasks. 

With the vast options presented to you, you must have been asking yourself, what is the best SEO plugin that will match your WooCommerce store’s goals. 

We only have three criteria set in choosing the SEO plugins we think are the best fit for our SEO needs.

Criteria we set when choosing SEO plugins.

Features

Though having plugins can help you enhance your WooCommerce stores, we recommend that you rely on little plugins as much as possible. 

As someone who runs a business online, it matters that you ensure you don’t expose your store to many threats. Having too many plugins opens more vulnerabilities because it means there is more than one publisher that controls your site. And if it fails, it can compromise your business’s security.

You better choose one plugin that caters to all your SEO needs than invest in those who might bring security issues or bugs in the future.

Security

If your site supports unreliable plugins, it can affect the quality of your website and how it will operate. 

Keep in mind that every plugin you install may affect your website’s safety, security, and health. Some plugins, once installed, could slow down your site’s speed. Some plugins by developers can do more harm than good as they use them to hack your website and customers’ information. 

So yes, every time you hit the activation button, be mindful of these plugins security issues that you might encounter if you invest in poorly developed ones. 

WordPress plugins, due to the vast numbers of plugins added on the directory, some of them are no longer updated or pass the industry standard. And if you still use this, you may be hit by compatibility issues. 

ManageWP previously released an article about bugs present in the widely used Yoast SEO plugin. Its respected developer and founder,  Joost de Valk, quickly addressed the issue but, WordPress.org showed that many people were marking SEO by Yoast releases as incompatible.

Also, you may have a plugin that is buggy, unsecure, and bloated. Meaning they add more clutter to your website than put value to it.

Reviews 

One of the best ways is always to seek or look for online reviews about the plugin of your interest. 

If you created a list of possible plugins that you think will match your needs, checking for reviews can help you trim down your options. Choosing a plugin is also like shopping online. 

When you want a specific item, you will look for reviews from the users to attest if the product delivers what it promises; by then, you will evaluate if it is good or bad. 

For example, you have seen that a plugin has over 10,000 reviews, but users gave it a 1 out of 5 rating. Would you be confident to use this type of plugin?

Before installing, ask these questions.

Who developed it?

When installing a plugin for your WooCommerce store, you must ensure that it comes from a reputable company. A poor plugin can do more harm than good to your website. 

Research the plugins that you want to install and the developers behind them. You will get a handful of reviews from these specific developers about the software or applications under their belt.

When was it updated?

Updates matter in every application or software. If you are using a plugin to enhance your WooCommerce store, you must ensure that it works according to industry standards. 

Track the status of your plugin’s updates. If you are using Yoast as your store’s SEO plugin, they provide a changelog that shows details of the last update. 

In this log, the management team reflects the latest updates, new developments on the product, and which parts of the system they run a quick fix. Having a plugin that performs regular updating ensures fewer compatibility issues, enhances the functionality and prevents security issues.

Is it well supported?

Let us help you. We all want to work with companies that honour their commitment and deliver what they promise, but more than that, we hope to build a relationship with those who ensure quality service for all. 

There will be times you will be requesting support from the developers of the plugins you integrated into your website. It matters that you know they have help centres where all communication lines are open to cater for your queries any time of the day.

WordPress SEO Setting

Wordpress SEO setting

You can perform a WordPress level setting even without your SEO plugins or affect your existing Woocommerce SEO plugin. Remember that WordPress is the foundation of your WooCommerce store and not the other way around. 

  1. Choose a suitable site title and tagline.

  [Insert image here: Choose a suitable title and tagline]

Choose A Suitable Site Title And Tagline

Your site title will serve as your brand name; better create a unique and suitable title that will describe your store. Taglines are also as essential as your site title because this is how most people remember the products or services you are selling.

Once you have set these, you can use them in your page title format.

  1. Ensure your site is indexable

One of the most common mistakes made by website developers is forgetting to uncheck this setting that prevents bots from crawling and indexing a site.

Things to take note of before continue your woocommerce seo setting

After creating your site’s name and tagline, the next thing you must do is ensure your site is indexable. All you have to do is hit the Settings button of your WordPress site and check if the Search Engine Visibility option has been disabled.

This option simply allows or disallows search engines from indexing your website, so always check that you don’t mistakenly tick the checkbox.  

  1. Ensure you have a valid SSL certificate installed
Ensure You Have A Valid SSL Certificate Installed

In May 2020, Google announced a new ranking factor under Page Experience Update to judge web pages based on user experience.

Google page experience update

This update allows Google to know how a user will perceive the experience of a specific web page. Considering areas such as whether the page loads quickly, if it’s mobile-friendly, runs on HTTPS, the presence of intrusive ads and if content jumps around as the page loads.

This means that having a valid SSL certificate is no longer a good-to-have but a must-have when it comes to SEO. It gives your WooCommerce store a ranking boost.

  1. Ensure to use only 1 version of your website, make proper canonicalisation
canonical setting

Your site should not be accessible by different versions of the URLs.  It is not a good idea to use both the www and non-www variation because search engines will face trouble determining the preferred version you wish your WooCommerce store to rank. Others resort to using the non-www because it is shorter and easy to remember.

Canonicalisation is significant when you have several pages or content that are similar, as this may result in duplicate issues. 

These issues often come from categories, archives, product pages, and sometimes from thin content.  

  1. Choose a simple permalink structure.
simple permalink structure

Always opt for a cleaner URL structure.

Though it may not directly affect your SEO performance, it helps your store improve customer experience. Visitors can easily remember your URLs as they browse your site.

On top of that, a longer URL structure tends to result in orphaned pages.

What Is an Orphan Page?

A page without any links to it is called an orphan page.

Search engines, like Google, usually find new pages in one of two ways:

  1. The crawler follows a link from another page.
  2. The crawler finds the URL listed in your XML sitemap.

So if you want a page to rank, you must first ensure search engine crawlers can find it.

WooCommerce SEO settings Using Rank Math

After you have covered all the bases in your WordPress site, it’s time for you to check what modifications are present in your WooCommerce SEO plugins. 

Enable WooCommerce SEO settings in Rank Math

Enable WooCommerce SEO Module

If you are using Rank Math as a WooCommerce SEO plugin, head on to the Dashboard to ensure that the WooCommerce SEO module has been enabled. Before you proceed with all of the modifications, don’t forget to confirm its activation.

Remove URL base

Remove URL base

Keep your URLs short and sweet. Remove unnecessary prefixes that are irrelevant to your store. Ensure that SERPs and your customers can access and navigate your WooCommerce store smoothly.

Don’t stress too much about removing possible good keywords from your URLs as it won’t have a weight on your SEO performance. Stick to keywords that are often used by your customers and know what interests them, offer an excellent user experience for visitors always. A thorough keyword research process for your e-commerce store is a must.

Remove category base

Remove category base

If you were to choose which one is better?

/product-category/accessories/action-figures/

Or

/accessories/action-figures/

By now, you have an idea that a clean and easy to read permalink is attractive to customers as it enhances user experience. So when you are deciding on how to structure your permalink, think of a direct and meaningful one that will help both your customers and SERPs.

Remove parent slug

Remove parent slug

If you think that you will not use categories for your WooCommerce store, this option works best for you.

Removing the parent category slug from the product page permalinks helps to remove unnecessary sub-folder in your URLs.

In the end, you will get a clean product URL like this:

https://www.abc.com/product-name

Remove WooCommerce Generator Tag

Remove generator tag

We have mentioned security and ensuring that your WooCommerce store’s integrity is not compromising your data and that of your customers in this article. We recommend you remove your WooCommerce Generator Tag because it exposes your WooCommerce version number and can pose a security risk. 

Besides, we want to have a cleaner website source code and removing the unnecessary Woocommerce Generator Tags helps. 

Example of a Woocommerce Generator Tag:

<meta name=”generator” content=”WooCommerce 4.4.2″ />

Remove schema markup on the Shop page.

Remove schema markup on shop archives

We recommend you remove the shop page as well, aside from removing the URL base in the previous step. 

Removing the Schema.org markup on the Shop page passes Google’s recommended practice of not using any other Schema type on the shop archive pages.

On top of that, pages like this lack keyword opportunities and SEO value, and in some cases, might end up competing for a similar set of keywords other pages are targeting.

Remove schema.org markup data from categories.

Remove Schema Markup on Category Pages

Google guidelines suggest to “use markup for a specific product, not a category or list of products.”

For example, “shoes in our shop” is not a specific product.” Enabling the removal of schema markups data from categories is definitely in line with this guideline.

Enable breadcrumbs

breadcrumb example

To enable breadcrumbs in Rank Math, go to General Settings and then move the button that says, ‘enable breadcrumbs function.’

After this, you will see several settings on how you want to control and like the breadcrumbs to appear in your store.

What are breadcrumbs?

what is breadcrumb?

A breadcrumb or a breadcrumb trail is a small, clickable, navigational help text located at the top of a page. This path indicates where you are currently on the site. You may associate this to that of Hansel and Gretel’s journey of finding their way back home – where Hansel dropped pieces of bread onto the ground.

Why use breadcrumbs?

Implementing breadcrumbs on your WooCommerce store helps you to:

Enable rich snippets
Enable rich snippets

It enables rich results and potentially can help you improve your site’s organic search CTR. It allows searchers to know where they will land once they click on your search listing. The biggest catch though is that Google loves them too!

Enhance user experience

Another thing is that breadcrumbs serve as an effective visual aid for users to identify the location they are currently at in your WooCommerce store.

Breadcrumbs also help users navigate between product categories or the homepage in just one click.

This contextual information takes up minimal space in your site as it is primarily texting with links, saving you from a possible content overload.

Decrease your website bounce rate

One of the common causes of high bounce rate is when shoppers have a tough time finding the products they are looking for or simply your site is hard to navigate.

Having breadcrumbs help them to navigate between product categories with ease, reducing the likelihood of leaving your site. Most importantly, keep them around longer to buy from you.

What are the different types of breadcrumbs?

Hierarchy based or location-based

This type of breadcrumb is very supportive to visitors as it helps tell you where you are in a site structure and guides you on how to get back to the homepage. 

Example: Home > Blog > Category > Post name.

Attribute-based

The name itself suggests that this type of breadcrumb displays the attribute of a particular page. 

Example: If a user searched for a product on your site, the trail would look like this,

Home > Product category > Gender > Size > Color. (source: Yoast)

History-based or path based.

This kind of breadcrumb shows a trail to your activities on the site or the different steps you took to get to your desired page. 

Example: Home > Previous page > Previous page > Previous page > Current page.

Generate XML sitemap

Generate XML Sitemap

What is an XML sitemap?

An XML (External Markup Language) sitemap is a file that contains a website’s essential pages. This file ensures that Google and other search engines can find, crawl on all pages, and understand your website’s structure.

Google supports various XML sitemap’s file types – HTML, video, image, mobile, or news. These file types depend on the content you have on your website, and generating one can help search engines identify it much more uncomplicatedly. 

Why do we need an XML sitemap?

Is it necessary to have an XML sitemap? Technically, no, because your site will still work, be indexable, and crawlable by search engines.

The reason why you need to generate and submit an XML sitemap is because of indexing. 

Search engines can still index your page, but having a sitemap makes it easier to find your website. Especially when you just added a new page, created a new website that doesn’t contain many links, you have orphan pages or pages that are hard to locate. 

You can work XML sitemap to your advantage if you maintain a geo-targeted international site or pages on your website that need multiple language translations. 

WooCommerce SEO best practises for optimisation

We have shared that for a satisfactory SEO backed WooCommerce website run – you must diligently perform the necessary implementations as to how you execute these can affect your site’s optimisation.

Here are some points you may want to consider or add to your checklist.

Organise your products with categories instead of tags

May it be in your physical or virtual store, organising your products and placing them accordingly in their rightful place positively impacts your business. 

Organising, categorising, and tagging your products SEO wise can help you optimise your online store. Don’t get confused with categorising and tagging your products. 

Product categories setting

Categorisation refers to grouping your products in a comprehensive, hierarchical manner, while tagging uses unique keywords to describe your products specifically.

If you own a boutique, you can use categories like kids, men, and women to identify a portion of the clothing department.  For tagging, you may put casual or swimwear.

Clients or customers appreciate user-friendly and easy to navigate websites. This practice helps you create a good impression, leading to favourable online conversions.

Add schema markup for WooCommerce stores.

SEO specialists deemed essential for one’s eCommerce journey is schema markup, as it can help you stand out from your competitors. Once you add this to your page, it creates a rich snippet and tells top search engines like Google, Bing, and Yandex about your content, whether it is about a person, a place, an organisation, or online users key in for results. 

Schema markup is microdata that provides context to your webpage. Microdata is a set of tags that aims to make HTML elements interpretation easy with machine-readable tags, according to Search Engine Journal.

Since schema markup involves microdata, some eCommerce users frequently frown upon this practice because it can be pretty messy to use as it requires you to mark every item within your page. 

Before you decide to integrate schema markups to your web page, ensure you have figured out the different content item types on your site for easy tagging. 

Examples of Schema Markup

You might be wondering about the different types of schema markups you can use for your WooCommerce store. These are some commonly used types based on Schema.org.

There are hundreds, if not thousands, of schema markups – as there are more types added over time – you may use for your webpage. Ensure to familiarise yourself with the different kinds of markup and what data types each support.

Enable WooCommerce review rich snippets with product schema markup

If you want to boost your organic search through nice, rich search results with star ratings, add product rich snippets to your WooCommerce store. Your organic traffic will increase by 516% if you are visible from the featured snippet on Google. Pretty cool, right?

What is a rich snippet?

Rich snippets put your products in the forefront of people searching for similar products because Google displays your product’s pertinent information; thus, increasing your click-through rates and ranking. 

This set of information involves product images, star ratings, prices, and other details that can help answer users’ queries right away. 

Example Of A Product Rich Snippets On Google SERPs
What is a product schema?

A product schema is a code that tells search engines about what your product page is or your content. Also known as structured data for products. 

Through these structured data you have set, Google and other search engines can create better-looking rich snippets that are essential to boost your rankings and click-through rates. 

You can use this structured data markup type in the following: Products, articles, events, reviews, recipes, books, and FAQs to name a few. 

There are many ways to implement structured snippets. You may do the following:

  • Manually
  •  Using a WordPress plugin
  •  Using the Data Highlighter tool in Google Search Console
  •  Using schema enabled WordPress themes

So how can you enable your WooCommerce product rich snippets?

How to add schema markup to a WooCommerce store

There are different ways you could use to add the schema markup.

Via WordPress theme

One way to add Schema markup to your WordPress site is to install a theme that has schema markups already included. 

Surprisingly, here are some themes that in-built schema markups:

  1. The Schema
  2. Schema Lite
  3. Schema Premium
Via a dedicated SEO plugin

Another way is through a plugin. This option is applicable if, you happen to have a theme installed on your site already and wish not to change it for schema purposes solely. You may use plugins to add schema markup to your WordPress site if you want.

Using our recommended WooCommerce SEO plugin, Rank Math, you can easily enable schema markups simply by enabling its WooCommerce SEO module.

Rank Math dashboard

Once enabled, all of your WooCommerce product pages will automatically have the Product Schema.

Product schema

However, you can only add one type of schema for the free version of Rank Math. 

Manual schema markup set up 

For manual schema markup set up, you can do it by editing the template files in your theme, but a small error can end up breaking your website.

You can easily schema markup using free online generators and implement them via custom code placement features, such as the one available in Elementor.

Setup pages for brand categories

If you are a multi-brand store, setting up categories for brands you carry helps you to leverage their brand awareness and search volume. Give your online store a chance to rank on search engines when shoppers are searching for a particular brand.

Brand categories set up

Setup up naming conventions for:

Page title

Think of a bookstore. What would you feel if you couldn’t find the book you badly wanted to read just because the staff failed to place the appropriate titles and descriptions? 

You need not compose a lengthy page title; what matters is that you ensure they have well-thought-out keywords and avoid truncation by keeping it between 150 – 160 characters.

Not sure what keywords to use? Why not first start off with thorough keyword research for your online store?

Example of a product title naming convention that you can use:

  • For Apparel – brand + product type + colour + material
  • For Consumables – brand + product type + weight + quantity
  • For Electronic goods – brand + specifications + product type + model
Single product page setting

Meta descriptions

Though this doesn’t guarantee you will rank higher than your competitors, well-written meta descriptions can go a long way in grabbing the audience’s attention. It can improve your click-through rate.

Search engines, like Google, take snippets of contents from meta descriptions and dynamically generate search results from them. 

Ensure it is unique and avoid truncation by ensuring it does not exceed 160 characters, contains focus keywords, and matches the content of your article. Such a requirement is not the end all be all of this; these are only some of the best practices you can adapt for your page’s optimisation.

Similar to search ads, page title and meta description together is the “ad copy” for your organic listing. How good your copy is will directly affect the amount of traffic your online store can receive.

Including action words such as “buy”, “shop”, and unique selling points like “free delivery” will give your SEO a click-through rate boost.

Image Alt text

Aside from drafting descriptions for your products or pages, never forget to add Alt text to the images of your content. 

You might have experienced visiting a page with broken images and left you hanging on what was on the picture or what it is about. This is where Alt text plays its part – a brilliant description of an image.

Image description

Correct: <img src=”waffle.jpg” alt=”Waffles”>

Recommended: <img src=”waffle.jpg” alt=”Stack of belgium waffles topped with fresh strawberry”>

Incorrect: <img src=”waffle.jpg” alt=”waffles, waffles recipes, strawberry waffles, best breakfast”>

Keep in mind that in writing Alt texts, conciseness and clarity is crucial.

Never start with the obvious one, “an image of…” or “a picture of….” You may use “an illustration about” or “a screenshot of”. It would be beneficial to tell people the context of the image.

Take writing these by experience and imagine you are a customer of your company. How would you label your products that perk up the interest of your prospective clients?

Bank on your audience’s emotions and capture their feelings through a logical, unique approach.

Setup Google Search Console.

Google Search Console (GSC) is a free service offered by Google. Establishing an account can help you monitor, maintain, and troubleshoot your business’s online presence in Google Search results.

If you have your GSC, you will clearly understand how your site performs and have an idea of its status. You don’t need to be a specialist to understand the data and metrics presented in this application, as it contains the necessary findings for you to read. 

Submit XML sitemap

submit sitemap on Google Search Console

An XML sitemap is a file that contains a website’s essential pages. This file ensures that Google and other search engines can find, crawl on all pages, and understand your website’s structure.

You can easily generate an XML sitemap with an SEO plugin.

Sitemap setting of Rank Math

Once you generate your sitemap, you will need to submit them via Google Search Console, helping Google crawlers to find your site and speed up the indexing process.

Sitemap submitted on Google Search Console

Ensure proper naming of image files before upload

Correctly naming your image files for optimal SEO is a great way to start.

Google can’t analyse the actual content of an image to tell what it is depicting. Instead, they rely on several indicators on a web page to tell them what the photo is all about. One way is through the photo’s filename.

You should never upload photos to your website with the standard camera-applied filename, like DSC_11004441.jpg! It does not help Google to know what this image is all about.

When Google knows more about the content of your image, it can include it in Image Search.

Image search result page

One of the most commonly asked questions about image file names is, should you be using a dash or underscore?

You should be separating the words in your filename with a dash (hyphen) and not an underscore.

For example:

(these-are-dashes)

(these_are_underscores)

Not only does it help people find your photos directly, but it also helps Google understand the content of the page that you posted the photo on, helping that page show up higher in regular search results for the subject.

Keep URLs short and descriptive.

Which is more readable for a human?

URL 1:

https://myonlinestore.com/2002/12/01/product-name

URL 2:

https://myonlinestore.com//product-name

URLs structure is one of the most basic elements of SEO. Yet it is a common issue found in many online stores.

In fact, Backlinko reports that URLs are a significant ranking factor.

Best Practises for URL

How we structure our URL matters in SEO 

Many neglect this part when they implement SEO campaigns as they pay more attention to headers, titles, and keywords without knowing that URLs can be a powerful tool in achieving your SEO goals.  

Do you know that if you have SEO-friendly URLs, you’ll earn these benefits:

  1. Better user experience. Well-thought-out URLs help both humans and search engines in understanding the content on your page.  
  1. Links. This is most common on social media platforms, blogs, and forums, where URLs serve as anchor text. For some online users that use unformatted links when sharing on their social media platforms, it matters to provide human-readable URLs. 
  1. Rankings. Although URLs don’t have a major impact on ranking your website, the keywords used in your URLs are a ranking factor and can improve your visibility in search engines. 

Here are some tips to help you in crafting your URLs:

Structure

Simple, readable, and concise. Keeping your URL structure in this manner can help you, your readers and search engines interpret what your content is all about. 

We recommend you logically organise your content to ease you in constructing your URLs. 

  • Use descriptive, readable words rather than long ID numbers.
  • Separate your keywords with punctuation.
  • Avoid using URLs that contain multiple parameters. This causes crawlers to create unnecessary high numbers of URLs that link to the same content on your site.

Standardise Your URLs in Lowercase

URLs are case sensitive. This means you have to ensure your URLs are in lowercase when you craft them, although other search engines don’t have issues with websites having mixed ones. 

We recommend you to have your URLs adapt lowercase letters as a good practice, especially for preventing linking errors within or outside the site. 

Online users tend to read URLs with lowercase letters easily compared to uppercase or mixed case. 

So you have to “put-it-this-way” rather than “Put-It-Like-This” or “HAVE-IT-THIS-WAY.”

Use Hyphens, Not Underscores

You have to ensure that search engines understand the context of your content and users can identify concepts in the URL smoothly.  

Hyphens serve as a word separator in your URLs, and Google can read and interpret your address easily, making it appear more relevant on queries.  

For instance, you have a page for tips on optimising the crawl budget. 

Between these two URL structures, which do you think, will suit you best?

  • tips_on_optimising_crawl_budget
  • tips-on-optimising-crawl-budget

If you pick the first one, Google will see it as “tipsonoptimisingcrawlbudget” which doesn’t make sense at all. While the second one, “tips-on-optimising-crawl-budget” looks like an actual sentence that is understandable; thus, leading you to a variety of searches:

  • “Tips for crawl budget optimisation”
  • “Crawl budget”
  • “Crawl budget optimisation tips”

What if I am already using an underscore instead of a hyphen? 

You don’t have to worry about this too much. Especially if you attain satisfactory ranking results, there’s no need for you to change it. 

Redirecting URLs to resolve your underscore issues is not worth it, as mentioned by John Mueller during a Webmaster hangout

Google will need to recrawl, reindex, and reinterpret your page after you have updated your URL’s structure. You will experience short-term ranking loss if you choose to restructure your site’s URLs as Google takes some time to crawl and index the new URLs.

Again, you may resort to changing your URL structure, from underscore to hyphen, if you are not performing well in search results. 

Avoid Using redundant Words in URL Structure.

Use your primary keywords, and avoid using redundant words in your URL structure. Remember, URL is not a ranking factor. You don’t get to treat it the same way as your keywords. 

1-2 primary keywords are enough to signal Google the content of your page is about. Overstuffing your URL with irrelevant keywords may cause them to identify it as spammy.

Stop words are not helpful, either. Remove the, and, or, of, a, an, to, for, etc. Eliminating these can make your URLs readable and shorter.  

Avoid keyword stuffing.

Keyword stuffing is a terrible SEO idea – a golden rule to all those content creators. Google can track if you are performing bad tactics to rank. Overstuffing keywords cannot help you as they may stain your reputation online. 

Avoid keyword stuffing

For SEO best practises, stick with the suggested keyword density. The formula is keyword density = (No. of words in copy) / (No. of times keyword appears in copy). In the example, the writer goes overboard with the use of keywords. The keyword density is 16.75% – higher than the threshold set for keyword stuffing.  

If you put too much of it on your web page’s meta tags, visible content, or backlink anchor text, you will get notifications or warnings about this violation. Don’t forget to make sure you performed a good keyword research process.

Optimise your product descriptions

Unique and well-written product descriptions are essential in your WooCommerce SEO store’s journey. It will lead customers through the sales funnel.

Unfortunately, you can’t always get this right. One wrong move can get you penalised by search engines, or do it the way you know how but earn no traction. 

Another challenge that eCommerce stores face, specifically under the product descriptions, is duplicate content. 

In terms of SEO, if your WooCommerce store happens to contain duplicate contents, it will be a disadvantage as Google will not incentivise your page and rank it higher in their search results. 

Other than that, if your product appears to be the same as those on big online retailers like Amazon, eBay, Rakuten, or Walmart, it will be challenging to compete, and your chances are slim in appearing on Google’s top page.

The best thing that you can do is create product descriptions that sell by formulating concise, captivating, and clear product descriptions for your customers. 

You are writing for people. Be a good storyteller.

Speed up your WooCommerce with reliable hosting

There are many ways to speed up your WooCommerce store, but one solid way is through reliable, high-quality hosting. Why? Hosting service is the foundation of the website. 

It moves to handle all traffic and data to ensure the best user experience. If you resort to investing in poorly managed hosting, your WooCommerce website will crash, and it will significantly affect its performance as the number of pages increases.

Your hosting choice must have the following features, according to BrowserStack:

  • 24/7 technical support to resolve issues and answer questions
  • High-end cloud infrastructure
  • Flexible in its ability to adapt as a WooCommerce store grows
  • Data centres across the world
  • High uptime rate so that the website is never down
  • Provides an SSD based solution
  • A server is geographically located close to the website audience, thus providing fast response times.

Key takeaway

WooCommerce SEO is one powerful platform to integrate into your online business.

Starting your virtual store entails hard work, dedication, and passion, as it will push you to try new things every day. Although plugins provide you with ease of use and navigational help, the success of your organisation depends on your strategy; this is where you need to incorporate SEO in your page’s optimisation goals.

You must check many angles if you want to optimise your site. You have to ensure to produce unique content, engage in on-page and off-page SEO activities, structure your site intelligently, and bank on high-performing keywords.

Establish your WooCommerce store for your customers. Ensure that you offer them the best user experience as much as possible. Your store must be accessible, interactive, and engaging in a way that helps you convert your audience into frequent customers. Learn their online behaviour to know what to change or add to your offerings.

Lastly, optimising your WooCommerce store for SEO doesn’t depend on one or two processes alone. It is more than that. You have to learn and work with SEO specialists to understand the weight of the goal that you want to attain for your online business – ranking on Google’s top page.

Kickstart Your Website Growth With Our SEO Services

If you want to begin optimising your website but don’t have the time, Roots Digital can help! Roots Digital is a digital marketing agency that specialises in helping e-commerce and B2B businesses to increase their revenue with digital marketing.

Our team of SEO professionals knows how to create SEO campaigns that grow our clients’ businesses.

Ready to boost your website’s ranking in search results to drive more revenue? Contact us online or speak with a strategist about our SEO services today!

WooCommerce SEO FAQs

Is WooCommerce Good For SEO?

Yes, WooCommerce is a great platform for e-commerce store owners that care about SEO. Unlike other platforms like Shopify and Wix, WooCommerce offers more flexibility and control over your store’s design and structure.

WooCommerce is built with code optimised for SEO. Leveraging the vast library of WordPress plugins that are available, WooCommerce is definitely the go-to e-commerce platform for SEO specialists.

Which SEO Plugin Is Best For WooCommerce?

At Roots Digital, we recommend using the Rank Math SEO plugin for our client’s WooCommerce sites. They offer the most functionalities without installing add-ons. For Yoast SEO plugin, you will need a separate plugin to add the feature to set up URL redirection. In Rank Math, you can simply add this feature by enabling the in-build redirection module. Relying on lesser plugins helps to keep your site clean and minimise potential security issues in the future.

A good WooCommerce SEO plugin must enable you to do the following:

– Edit robots.txt and .htaccess file
– Generate an XML sitemap
– Customise your page title and meta description, and 
– Setup redirection, meta robots no-index tag, and schema markups tags.

These features are all present in Rank Math. You may want to cross-check other plugins that you think have these integrations. 

Why Do I Need To Take WooCommerce SEO Seriously?

SEO is one of the most cost-effective ways to help your website ranks on Google.
 
The more time you spend working with your SEO strategy, the more area of your website you can improve. The fewer resources you need to spend for paid ads, your website’s potential traffic will increase –  leading to a significant volume of customer conversion.

Unlike paid media, organic traffic from search engines provides your WooCommerce store with consistent inbound qualified traffic. The traffic will not cease when you pause your campaign. It provides you with a sustainable traffic source and predictable sales orders.

Do WooCommerce Product Tags Help SEO?

No. Having WooCommerce product tags does not help you with SEO. And in most cases, it results in content duplication and keyword cannibalisation for your WooCommerce store. It is recommended to keep them non-indexable using your WooCommerce SEO plugins and prevent search engines from crawling those pages using robots.txt syntax.

Product tag usage can be confusing and might affect your SEO campaign if not done correctly. WooCommerce products have two significant taxonomies: categories and tags. 

For example, your line of business falls on selling home decor items. You may have categories for picture frames, decorative items, and printed wall arts. For product tags, on the other hand, you may use the size or colour of the item. So, for the category of a picture frame, your product tag can be a 4″ x 6″ size and a white frame colour.

Unfortunately, virtual store owners tend to use the same product tags and product categories to describe the item they are selling. 

For instance, you have this subcategory page for picture frames.

Product Category: yourdomain.com/product-category/home-decors/picture-frames

Product Tag: yourdomain.com/tag/picture-frames

The problem here is that both pages would be competing for search queries related to picture frames. This scenario creates a negative impact on your SEO ranking campaign as both URLs contain a similar listing of products.

Ensure that you create a unique page for your WooCommerce website to avoid duplication and confusion to your shoppers. We strongly recommend you not to use product tags unless you can efficiently manage each term and develop unique keywords relevant to your business.  

For non SEO purposes, you may use tagging for your backend monitoring to track the performance of your products. Product tagging could help you indicate items that have higher and lower margins. These metrics allow you to determine which item you need to let go of or change for your next promotional campaign.

One important thing to remember is as long as you use an SEO plugin to insert meta robots; no-index tags to product tags, you are safe from having SEO issues we have mentioned. 

How Do I Optimise My WooCommerce Product Page?

Product pages mainly attract long-tail search queries that are very specific and have high purchase intent. One example of a long-tail search query made is “Apple iPhone 13 128 GB”. The searcher is very specific in terms of the brand and specifications they are interested in. Start your WooCommerce product page SEO by coming up with a naming convention for your product title, title tag and meta description. This saves you the need to create unique titles for 1001 products in your online store. You can refer to our product page SEO guide and product description optimisation tutorial for in-depth SEO techniques.

Should WooCommerce Product Tags & Categories Be Indexable?

WooCommerce product categories should be indexable.

Product category pages are one of the most important pages in any e-commerce site. They are the ones that are mapped to highly searched category keywords.

However, product tags should be kept non-indexable using both robots.txt and meta robots tag. One common mistake by WooCommerce sites’ owners is using product tags just like how they would use product categories. As a result, it creates archive pages that might target keywords similar to your product category pages, causing keyword cannibalisation.

Ensure product tags are non-indexable unless you plan to use them for your brand category pages, separate from your product categories if you don’t wish to create any custom taxonomies for them.

Is Yoast WooCommerce SEO Plugin Worth It?

We have worked with countless WooCommerce stores on their SEO, and Yoast SEO is definitely not worth the cost. There are hidden costs such as the need to get their WooCommerce add-on to enable their WooCommerce SEO features.

They used to be the market leader in WordPress SEO, but better options are available, such as Rank Math.

Is Rank Math better than Yoast?

At Roots Digital, we recommend using the Rank Math SEO plugin for our client’s WooCommerce sites. They offer the most functionalities without installing add-ons. There isn’t a perfect WooCommerce SEO plugin, it depends on your preference. At Roots Digital, we recommend Rank Math over Yoast SEO as the preferred SEO plugin for WooCommerce due to 2 factors. It reduces the need to install many plugins to have certain SEO features and no hidden cost.

How to Fix Schema Errors in WooCommerce?

Use Google’s schema markup testing tool to test if your schema markup is implemented correctly. To avoid any syntax errors, you can set up schema markups using SEO plugins such as Rank Math. If you require some customisation, you can use schema markup generators available online to help you with the syntax generation and then add them to your website header.

Is HTTPS / SSL Required To Run A WooCommerce Store?

Though a WooCommerce store does not need HTTPs or SSL to run, it is strongly recommended that you have them installed. In the recent page experience update by Google, site security is one of the ranking factors that is taken into account when it comes to ranking calculation. On top of that, a secured e-commerce store will give your shoppers the confidence to make purchases online.

Where Can I Find Product Images?

Avoid using ready images from your manufacturer. We strongly recommend you to invest in the production of product images for your e-commerce store. Pro tip, before uploading your images to your e-commerce store, ensure they are properly optimised for Image SEO. Image SEO should be part of your SEO strategy to gain organic traffic through image search.

How To Show Star Ratings On Google?

Star ratings shown on Google search results are part of the rich snippets components. To begin with, you need to ensure your product schema markup is free of any errors or conflicts with your theme. Test your markup with Google’s Rich Results testing tool. You can easily add product structured data to your product pages using themes pre-installed with it or through WooCommerce SEO plugins like Rank Math.

Ian Ong
Ian Ong
Marketing Director @ Roots Digital. Aka the guy responsible for growing the digital agency.
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