Making It Know

Ask Us: Optimizing Your Ecommerce Store

Editor’s Note: Find the answers you need to succeed in Ask Us, a monthly advice column powered by Squarespace employees and other experts in their respective fields.

As someone dedicated to products that help power small businesses, I know that setting up a quality ecommerce store is a natural next step — and a big undertaking — for many of our customers who are looking to expand their business. Translating your products and offerings to your website involves many moving parts. From organizing your products, to managing online inventory and creating thoughtful product pages, there are countless elements that come together to create a user-friendly, functional shopping experience.

Taking the time to optimize your ecommerce store can give your business a foundation of success, and ensure that visitors to your website have a positive interaction. When you’re setting up your online store, there are four factors to consider.

Keep Ecommerce SEO in mind

Search engines are a great way for online shoppers to discover your products. All Squarespace online stores are automatically optimized for search engines with built-in tools like site maps and clean HTML markups, helping to make sure your products show up in search. To get the most mileage from your online store, there are a few additional steps you can take to fully optimize your website’s SEO.

The way you organize your products plays a key role in ecommerce SEO. Arranging products into categories and subcategories helps shoppers navigate your store and find your products — and  has a big SEO impact as well. When you create sub-categories, Squarespace automatically generates category pages that can be easily indexed by search engines. Related product category pages are also automatically linked together, helping each page on your website build page authority and rank higher in search engine results. For example, a clothing store with a “Shirts” category can add and start to rank for nested categories like “Women’s,” “Tops,” and “Tanks.” A store that only uses the overarching category of Shirts will miss the opportunity to capture search volume for additional keywords. Ultimately, nested categories will help your online store rank for both individual product names, as well as the categories they fall under.

Enhance your product listings

Squarespace online stores are designed to showcase your products at their best. Giving your products detailed titles, descriptions, and tags will not only help boost your ecommerce SEO, but it will also give visitors to your site more information about their potential purchases. You can embed videos and images for each product variant to give customers a more holistic view of your products. Displaying related products is another great way to deepen engagement with your store and increase the likelihood that shoppers will find what they’re looking for and make a purchase.

When shoppers land on a product page, you can also drive urgency with “Limited Availability” labels and “Sold Out” badges. They’re an easy way to alert shoppers when stock is low on an item, or when it’s unavailable. Plus, labels and badges have the added benefit of helping you move inventory.

Apply analytics to your sales strategy

Understanding how visitors are interacting with your online store is key to ecommerce funnel optimization, and will help you make smarter decisions for your business. Squarespace offers powerful eCommerce Analytics tools that help you identify sales trends and best-selling products. You can see exactly where customers are coming from and follow their entire site path, from your homepage to checkout, to help you improve their experience and increase sales. 

You can also leverage Analytics to see which products aren’t selling well, and consider putting them on sale to help move inventory. Over time, monitoring Analytics will deepen your learnings about customers and prospects, and help you create data-driven strategies to drive more sales.

Don’t forget the little details

Ecommerce conversion rate optimization ultimately comes from a combination of adjustments and additions to your online store. From focusing on SEO and clarity in your site copy, to displaying engaging product imagery, every detail can ladder up to stronger conversions. With Squarespace, you can also offer promotions and discounts for slower moving or seasonal inventory, integrate Afterpay with your online store to offer flexible payment options to your customers (currently available in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand), and use banners and announcement bars to let shoppers know about sales. You can also easily set up Abandoned Cart Recovery emails to encourage shoppers to come back and make a purchase if they leave before checking out.

Gift cards can be another way to add an additional revenue stream to your online store. Squarespace makes it easy to create digital gift cards that shoppers can buy for themselves or send to a friend. Gift cards can be redeemed on your website, or in person with the Squarespace Commerce app.

Ready to launch your online store? Get started by browsing Squarespace ecommerce templates.

This post was last updated on April 2, 2021.

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