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A Beginners Guide to Ecommerce SEO Basics



At Sixtwo, we are a team dedicated to living and breathing the web industry and bringing you the latest updates in bite size chunks.

Ecommerce SEO is often a bit of an afterthought for most ecommerce – especially when they’re first starting.

Yes, established ecommerce store owners may have SEO covered, but start-up businesses in the ecommerce space may initially depend on social media or paid traffic to meet revenue targets.

However, the same is true for both start-ups and established ecom businesses: It’s surprising how many ecommerce stores overlook basic SEO principles.

In this article, Sixtwo provides 7 practical ecommerce SEO basics to kickstart your SEO. These straightforward strategies can help ecommerce businesses boost organic growth and revenue.


    Reorganise your products into keyword-matched categories
    Optimise your categories or collections
    Optimise your H1s with product names and keywords
    Reduce any duplicated products or categories
    Link between related product categories
    Optimise Your Google Merchant Centre
    Make sure your images are optimised.

1. Reorganise your products into keyword-matched categories

Have you ever noticed that when you search for a specific product, Google ranks product categories or collection pages? This is completely intentional as Google assumes that a typical shopper doesn’t want to see just one product, they want to see a range of products to assess the options. A product category page is essentially your ‘aisle’ just like in a physical store. 

Yellow Trainers Google search

Organising your products into categories is a powerful method to improve product grouping and create new opportunities. You can organise your products by:

  1. Type and colour – i.e. yellow trainers 
  2. Size – 4m artificial grass
  3. Style – Low heel brogues 
  4. Material – Oak outdoor signage

Organising your products into collections or categories and focusing your SEO efforts on these groups is beneficial. Use keyword research to identify collection phrases your users are searching for and create dedicated collection pages to target these phrases.

2. Optimise your categories or collections

Once you’ve bundled your products into specific product category pages, it’s time to optimise the meta titles and descriptions. 

Similarly to the previous example, Google expects the meta titles and descriptions to clearly describe the collections / product categories. 

Quick tips for optimising metadata:

  • Title tags: Make them concise and descriptive, featuring relevant keywords. Use 50 to 70 characters wisely, as it’s the first thing viewers see in search results.
  • Meta descriptions: Keep them under 150 characters. Though they don’t directly impact rankings, they can improve click through rates. 
  • Ensure unique meta titles and descriptions for each core product and category page to prevent competition among pages.
  • Insert relevant keywords naturally into your meta data to clarify page content and increase visibility.

3. Optimise your H1s with product names and keywords

The most important on-page element is your H1 tag. You’ll need to ensure that each of the new product category pages has a H1 tag that contains the keyword you’re looking to rank for and best describes the content. You’ll need to make sure your H1s are unique: Avoid replicating headers on multiple pages to ensure your category pages don’t compete against each other (more on this later)

There is no real need to be particularly creative about the H1s. Generally, they just describe the products in the collection:

Artificial grass Google search

4. Reduce any duplicated products or categories

Keyword cannibalisation occurs when multiple pages on your site are optimised for the same keywords, causing all pages to rank lower. 

One of the most common ‘out of the box’ issues with ecommerce content management systems is that they automatically create duplicate categories when you populate ‘tags.’

For instance, Shopify often duplicates product category pages for each ‘tag’ or product variation:


You’ll want to make sure you have a strategy for dealing with duplicate category pages. You could:

  • Deleted and redirect all duplicated categories to the main category page
  • Implement canonical tags

5. Link between related product categories

Ensure related categories and products link to each other within your store.This strengthens site architecture, highlights important pages to search engine bots, and provides context to Google.

Internal linking is one of the most underrated SEO strategies as it’s proven to provide Google with more information about the pages you’re linking to – especially if the page is related to the original topic. For example, if you have a product category displaying a particular type gym leggings, you could also link to another category page that displays similar products.  

Sitecentre internal links

Image reference:

6. Optimise Your Google Merchant Centre

A simple product-related Google search will display products above traditional organic listings, known as the Google Merchant Centre.

Yellow trainers 2



Contrary to popular belief,  this traffic is considered organic rather than paid!

Google Merchant Centre allows businesses to upload, submit, and manage store and product data on Google. This data is used for services like Google Shopping, displaying product listings directly in search results, leading to higher click-through rates and increased traffic and conversions.

Find out more about The Google Merchant Centre here.

7. Make sure your images are optimised

Are your products highly visual? Shoppers are often drawn to image search if they’re looking for a particular physical feature and Google recognises this.

This is why image results are often prominently featured in ecommerce queries.

Oak sign google search

We can see how the ‘real estate’ that the image grid is given in a product-related Google search in the screenshot above.

It’s so important to optimise your images to improve their chances of ranking in these image packs. This includes using descriptive alt tags (the name and technical details of the product) and optimising file names to include descriptive keywords.

Are you looking to optimise your ecommerce website? 

Contact Sixtwo today. We can assess your current rankings, potential visibility, and on-site optimisation opportunities to boost organic sales.


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