5 Steps To Do Ecommerce Keyword Research The Right Way (With Examples)

Ecommerce Keyword Research can help your business get more sales
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As an eCommerce store owner, there’s no way you aren’t already familiar with the power of the internet and what it means for businesses. What if we told you it’s not as difficult as it seems? That the key to climbing the digital ladder lie in your keywords?

E-commerce keyword research is the secret sauce that can enhance your store’s visibility, impact search engine rankings, and drive more traffic- and, yes, send your sales skyrocketing. Explore our definitive guide on how to uncover the right keywords for your eCommerce store to get noticed by the right people at the right time!

Whether you need information on the basics of keyword research or a guide to understanding your customers’ search behavior, we’ve got you covered. We have explored specific strategies for choosing effective keywords for your product pages, descriptions, category pages, and eCommerce blog pages. We’ve also explained the concept of competitor analysis and how it can shape your eCommerce keyword research strategy.

Worried about the mistakes you’re going to make along the way? Don’t be; we’ve chalked out the common pitfalls and how to avoid them already so you can ace your flawless eCommerce keyword research strategy.

Ready to unlock your online potential? Let’s dive in.

The Basics of eCommerce Keyword Research

Creating a unique and effective keyword research strategy brings endless opportunities for growth to eCommerce businesses. Once you get the hang of the process, you’ll master it in no time!

Keyword research isn’t simply about spotting the right keywords- but it would be a good starting point. However, let’s familiarise you with the types of keywords that are an indispensable part of an eCommerce strategy before proceeding further. Here are the types of keywords you should target for an optimized eCommerce website and enhanced visibility. Each of these keywords serves a unique function for your online marketing-

  1. Commercial keywords- These signal purchase intent, but the user is still weighing their options and is seeking more information about certain products and services.
  2. Branded keywords- These keywords incorporate your brand name and services, attracting users who are specifically searching for your brand. These keywords can add to your brand presence.
  3. Customer-defining keywords- These keywords are intended for your brand’s target market demographics and a specific category of customers.
  4. Product-defining keywords- These keywords describe your product and its characteristics, helping define your services and draw potential customers who are in the initial stages of making a purchase.
  5. Geo-targeted keywords- These keywords primarily focus on location and are especially important for businesses that target a specific area for more conversion and aim to increase their local visibility.
  6. Market segment keywords- These keywords are generic words associated with an industry or brand and can be more or less specific depending on the marketing needs.

Why eCommerce Store Owners Should Invest Time In Keyword Research?

Imagine your eCommerce store as a physical shop. You wouldn’t hide it away in a remote location; you’d likely place your store where customers can easily find it. In the world of eCommerce, strategic keyword research takes the place of valuable high-street real estate. It provides a marked route straight to your online doors, drawing in the customers who are actively seeking what you offer. 

But why is keyword research important? Let’s take a closer look. 

Increased visibility 

When you optimize your site around the key phrases your customers are searching for, you naturally achieve better search engine rankings. This translates into greater visibility for your store, leading to increased organic traffic. According to statistics, about 33% of overall traffic to eCommerce sites comes from organic search, which makes keyword research an indispensable tool for your online success.

Understanding your market 

Looking into ecommerce demographics

Keyword research lets you step into the shoes of your target market, giving crucial clues about their needs, concerns, desires, and language. Once you have this knowledge, it’s up to you to shape your product offerings and marketing messages in a way that resonates with and attracts your ideal customers!

Boosting sales and conversions 

The goal isn’t just to lure larger volumes of visitors to your store but to attract the right visitors—those likely to convert into customers. By targeting the specific keywords your potential customers are using, you’re increasing the chances of turning those visitors into buyers. 

Keeping up with industry trends 

The keywords that are trending in your industry may shift over time. Routine keyword research allows you to stay ahead of the curve, spotting new trends, emerging consumer demands, and opportunities for expanding your product lines. 

Key Takeaway

Keyword research isn’t just an optional extra—it’s an integral part of your online success. Read our guide on advanced keyword research

Keyword Parameters For eCommerce Keyword Research

Understanding the basics of eCommerce keyword research isn’t just about picking the most relevant search terms. It’s about digging into the minds of your potential customers to find the language they’re using when they’re ready to pull the trigger on a purchase.

Read on for a guide to the selection of the right keywords that would attract the desired traffic to your eCommerce store. Understanding and applying these parameters in your keyword research process ensures you target appropriate audience segments and optimize your store for success. 

So let’s break it down!  

Search intent

Search intent, also known as keyword intent, is the intent behind a particular search. People usually search with intent, aiming to satisfy a certain need. This desire might be for information (e.g., “how to clean suede shoes”), navigational (e.g., “Zappos women’s boots”), or might indicate a transactional search intent (e.g., “buy boots online”). You need to tap into your customer’s search intent and tailor your content accordingly. As an eCommerce store owner, you’ll likely want to focus most on the transactional keywords since the purchasing intent is strong.

Search volume

Search volume tells you how many people are searching for a particular keyword. A high search volume implies that the keyword is popular and people are often searching for it. It is tempting to target high-volume keywords, but they also often come with high competition. Choosing more specific, long-tail keywords (e.g., “men’s black leather boots size 11” instead of “men’s boots”) can help you reach a targeted audience that’s more likely to convert. 

Keyword difficulty

Considering keyword difficulty, better known as keyword competition, is vital in your research process. This parameter shows how many other businesses are using the same keyword, thus depicting the difficulty level in ranking for that keyword. It is often advisable to find low-competition keywords that are easier to rank for while still offering potential traffic benefits. 

Keyword relevance 

A Venn diagram illustrating how to select the relevant keywords

Another important parameter is keyword relevance. This involves checking how closely connected a keyword is to your product or service offerings. The more relevant a keyword is, the higher the chances of attracting potential customers who are interested in what you’re selling. 

While we’re at it, remember that it’s crucial to consider seasonality as well. Certain products and associated keywords can spike in interest at certain times of the year (e.g., “Christmas decorations” in November and December). Taking advantage of these trends at the right time can give your store a significant boost!  

Key Takeaway

The key to a good keyword strategy is remembering to take all factors into consideration. For example, Having a high search volume is great, but it would hardly do any good if you don’t consider the intense competition that comes with it. A keyword with low competition might seem like a perfect target, but its value diminishes if it’s not relevant to your products or services.

5-Step eCommerce Keyword Research Strategy

As already discussed above, keywords are the true game changers in the digital world. Here is our proven 5-step keyword strategy that is guaranteed to fetch all the right keywords for you to target.

Step 1: Conduct a current ranking assessment of your keywords

Evaluating rankings of existing keywords

Start by understanding where your website currently ranks in relevant searches. This will give you a baseline to work from and help you identify areas for improvement. This is a very crucial step as it sets the foundation of your entire SEO strategy and helps you set benchmarks.

Use tools like Google Search Console, SEMrush, or Ahrefs to determine where your website currently ranks on the search engine results page for relevant keywords.

By inputting your domain, you can get a detailed report showing your ranking positions for various search terms.

This data is invaluable as it not only shows you where you are performing well but also highlights areas where your site is not visible in search results, indicating potential opportunities for improvement.

Step 2: Assign search intent to page types

The next step involves understanding and aligning the purpose behind a user’s search query with the appropriate type of page on your eCommerce website. Recognize whether a keyword is transactional (low funnel keywords that have the intent to buy), informational (where users are looking for information or answers), navigational (looking for a specific website or page), or commercial investigation (where users are considering a purchase and are comparing options).

Each type of intent requires a different approach in terms of content and page layout.

Once you understand the search intent, the next step is to map these intents to specific types of pages on your site.

  • Transactional keywords –> Product pages or shopping cart pages
  • Informational keywords –> Blog posts, FAQs, or resource pages
  • Navigational keywords –> Homepage or main category pages
  • Commercial keywords –> Comparison pages, reviews, or detailed product descriptions

Step 3: Utilizing competitor analysis in keyword research

Analyzing competitor's top-performing keywords

One of the most effective tactics in conducting keyword research for eCommerce is to evaluate and understand what your competitors are doing. Let’s dive into how you can harness the power of competitor analysis in your keyword research. 

Here’s a step-by-step rundown on how to carry out a competitor keyword analysis: 

  1. Identify your competitors: Start by listing down the top eCommerce businesses that are directly competing with you in your niche.
  2. Analyze their website content: Look for the keywords they are using in their titles, meta descriptions, product descriptions, content body, and URLs.
  3. Pay attention to their backlinks: Backlinks are a strong determinant of how well a webpage ranks. Tools like Ahrefs allow you to examine the backlink profiles of your competitors.
  4. Look at their PPC campaigns: If your competitors are involved in Pay-Per-Click advertising, see what keywords they are bidding on. Tools like SEMrush provide insights into competitor’s PPC strategies.

Once you’re through with the process of competitor analysis, it’s time to identify the gaps in their strategy. What content and keyword opportunities are they missing? Analyzing your main online competitor’s keyword strategy isn’t to replicate it but to understand the tactics they’re implementing and discover target keyword opportunities they might have overlooked.

Competitor analysis eventually empowers a brand to craft a more compelling and unique keyword strategy that sets it apart from the competition while optimizing its own visibility in the digital space. 

Step 4: Content gap analysis

Now that you have your ranking keywords, competitor keywords, and results from the keyword research tool. It is time to get sorting. This is called content gap analysis. Evaluating existing content on a topic or keyword and uncovering gaps to improve upon. Are there relevant topics or questions that your site does not address? Are there products or services in your niche that you haven’t covered?

In essence, it will compare your current content offerings with your audience’s desired content.

Once you’ve identified these gaps, the next step is to develop a content strategy to fill them. This might involve creating new web pages, writing blog posts, producing videos, or expanding product descriptions. The aim is to create high-quality, relevant content that meets the needs of your audience and covers topics that your competitors and even you might be overlooking.

Step 5: Refine your keyword list and start optimizing

The final step is fine-tuning your list of keywords to ensure they are highly relevant, competitive, and aligned with your business goals. For instance, if you’re launching a new product, prioritize keywords related to that product.

Next, assess the search volume and competition for each keyword. High search volume keywords are attractive but often come with stiff competition. Therefore, it’s important to include a mix of high-volume keywords and more niche, long-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords, being more specific, may have lower search volumes but can lead to higher conversion rates as they often align closely with specific user intents.

Ensure that each keyword or phrase is closely related to your products or services. Irrelevant keywords, no matter how popular, won’t bring the right traffic to your site.

Once your keyword list is finalized, the focus shifts to optimization.

Optimizing Product Descriptions With Targeted Keywords

Keywords in Product descriptions

The effective use of targeted keywords in your product descriptions can enhance your eCommerce store’s SEO ranking. But remember, optimization is not just about adding as many keywords as possible; it’s about strategic placement and being mindful of the user experience. 

Start with researching relevant keywords that fit naturally with your product. Think about how your audience would search for your product online. What phrases or words would they use? With this in mind, sprinkle these keywords strategically throughout your product descriptions. 

Remember, keyword stuffing can potentially harm your SEO ranking, as search engines might perceive it as spam. In other words, don’t overpower your product descriptions with the same keywords — it’s important to strike a balance between SEO and readability. 

Optimization doesn’t stop at the product description. Also, consider these sections of your product page for keyword optimization: 

  • Title tag: It is one of the most important areas for SEO optimization. Incorporate your targeted keyword into the title tag in a way that still reads naturally.
  • URLs: Including keywords in product URLs can make your pages more search-engine friendly.
  • Meta descriptions: Although they don’t directly impact your SEO, well-optimized meta descriptions can increase click-through rates from search engine results pages.
  • Image alt tags: Descriptive alt tags with keywords can enhance your visibility in image searches.

Proper keyword placement can be made simpler by using tools like ‘Yoast SEO’ or ‘All-in-One SEO’. These tools give prompts on where and how to use your target keywords, making optimization as easy as ever!

Remember: Your goal in keyword optimization is not just about increasing traffic, but attracting the right kind of traffic — potential customers that are interested in your products and are likely to convert.

In the end, high-quality product descriptions, optimized with the related keywords, can increase your site’s visibility in the existing search results, boost your SEO, improve user experience, and potentially lead to higher conversion rates. 

Using The Right Keywords For Category Pages

Category pages act as the gateway to a range of products similar in nature, which makes them an extremely important part of your SEO efforts. Enriching your category pages with the related keywords is as crucial as placing products correctly in a brick-and-mortar store!

Here’s why: The keywords you choose for these pages will determine how easily potential customers can find your collections via search engines. Imagine a customer searching for “summer dresses’. If you have optimized your ‘Dresses’ category page with related and specific keywords, there’s a good chance your store will pop up in their search results.

Let’s explore how you choose the most effective keywords for your category pages!

Understand your customer’s search behavior 

Using tools like Google Trends or SEMrush can provide you insights into the most commonly used search terms by your target audience. These insights are all you need to align your keywords with common search terms and boost your visibility!

For instance, if you learn that people are searching more for ‘floral summer dresses’ rather than simply ‘summer dresses’, it might be beneficial to tweak your keywords to match this behavior. 

Include long-tail keywords 

Long-tail keywords are search phrases that are highly specific and often longer than typical search terms. These can be really valuable as they tend to have less competition, and the users who get search results using them are often closer to the point of purchase.

For example, a customer who types ‘summer dresses for beach wedding’ is likely to have a clearer intent to buy than someone who simply types ‘dresses.’ 

According to Semrush, long-tail keywords make up the majority of Google searches.

Capitalize on seasonal and event-linked keywords 

Consider the seasonal nature of products or any events that might drive people to your store. Events like Christmas, Black Friday, or Easter can all influence user search behavior. Use this to your advantage by integrating such event-linked keywords into your Category pages during those seasons. 

Key Takeaway

Choosing the right keywords for your Category pages is both an art and a science. Remember, when well-executed, these keywords can significantly enhance your store’s visibility online, driving more search traffic your way and ultimately boosting your sales.

Choosing Keywords For eCommerce Blogs

Optimizing your eCommerce blog with the right keywords is a strategic move to draw in potential customers. Choosing these keywords requires some careful thought and research. These should be relevant to the products you offer and related areas.

Make sure to incorporate Long-tail keywords- they may have lower search volumes, but they often have less competition and can be highly targeted to your niche. 

Capitalize on local keywords by incorporating words that are unique to the area you are targeting. These can range from language preferences and jargon to specific geo-targeted keywords.

Focus on the keyword intent

Keyword intent refers to what users are typically looking for when they input a certain search term. For instance, someone searching for “how to apply foundation” is likely looking for a tutorial or guide, whereas someone searching for “best foundation” might be looking for product reviews or recommendations. On the contrary, ‘stainless steel water flask’ and ‘steel water bottle’ show the same type of search results as the search intent is the same in the eyes of Google.

Comparing the intent of different search terms

Tailoring your blog content to match the search intent of your chosen keywords can help improve your SEO and draw in more relevant traffic. 

Choosing keywords for your eCommerce blog requires careful research and consideration of factors such as relevance, popularity, localization, and search intent. But with the right approach, it can significantly enhance the visibility and relevance of your blog – and, ultimately, drive more customers to your store.

Keyword Research Tools For eCommerce

Keyword research tools are essential for any eCommerce business that is all set to ace its online marketing strategy. Here are some of the best keyword research tools that you can use to perform keyword research for your eCommerce strategy: 

Google Keyword Planner

This is one of the most popular keyword research tools amongst SEO professionals and eCommerce store owners, and rightly so. It’s an official keyword tool by Google, and it offers extensive data directly from the search engine itself. With Google dominating the search engine space, understanding what keywords are popularly searched on Google can give you a broad picture of what’s trending. The tool gives information about a keyword’s monthly search volume, competition level, and more. 

Semrush

This all-in-one marketing tool goes beyond basic keyword research. It helps you understand the keyword strategy of your competitors, paid ad research, and SEO audit of your site, among others. For eCommerce business owners, this valuable tool can provide a detailed analysis of competitors and help you find profitable keywords. 

Ahrefs

Ahrefs is another great keyword research tool you can use to craft an effective content marketing and eCommerce SEO strategy. Especially beneficial for its backlink analysis feature, Ahrefs also does a splendid job when it comes to keyword research for your eCommerce store. Get ready for significantly increased visibility for your online business and search engine rankings with these tools! 

Amazon Suggest

Amazon Suggest can be used as a real-time keyword suggestion tool that provides suggestions as you type in the Amazon search bar. These autocomplete suggestions are based on a variety of factors, including your search history, popular search terms, and product relevance.

Adapting Your Keyword Strategy To Changing User Behavior

User behavior is constantly evolving as consumer interests shift and new trends emerge. It is absolutely essential to adapt your keyword strategy to keep up with these changes. Crafting a keyword strategy that answers the search queries of your target audience becomes extremely important here.

The importance of recognizing evolving user behavior 

Tracking how user's search patterns are changing

Consider a simple example. When smartphones became ubiquitous, people’s search behavior changed significantly. Instead of typing complex queries, users began leveraging voice assistants, resulting in more natural, conversational search phrases. According to a study by Oberlo, approximately seven out of ten consumers (71%) prefer to use voice searches to conduct a query over the traditional method of typing. This means a missed out on capturing a significant portion of its potential audience for eCommerce businesses that did not optimize their content for voice searches. 

Stay ahead of the game with predictive analysis 

Predictive analysis can be an invaluable tool for your keyword research. Analyzing past trends and user behaviors can help you predict which keywords are likely to grow in popularity. For instance, you might notice that searches for a particular product tend to spike before major holidays or events. Using this information, you could optimize your keywords ahead of time, capturing those increased search volumes as they occur. 

Reducing missteps with A/B testing 

Before you redesign your entire strategy based on new keywords, consider implementing A/B testing to validate your choices. This process involves running multiple versions of a page, each with different keywords, simultaneously. The goal is to identify which keywords resonate more with your customers and drive more traffic or conversions. This information can help you make more educated decisions when updating your keyword strategy and reduce the risk of alienating your current audience. 

Regular auditing and adaptation 

Keyword strategies are anything but set-and-forget. Just like the digital landscape, they need to continually evolve and adapt. Regular auditing of your keyword strategy can help you identify underperforming keywords and spot emerging keyword opportunities. Armed with this information, you can make constant improvements to your strategy, ensuring your eCommerce site remains optimized for organic search results and higher search engine rankings.

Remember, adapting your keyword strategy requires continuous effort. However, the benefits of maintaining relevancy with evolving user behavior — capturing more organic traffic, increasing conversions, and staying ahead in the competitive online marketplace — make the investment worthwhile.

Avoiding Common Keyword Research Mistakes

The world of eCommerce keyword research can be a complex one, and it’s not unusual to stumble and make mistakes along the way. Read on to find out more about the common pitfalls to avoid while crafting your keyword research strategy!

  • Overemphasizing highly competitive keywords: Broad, high-volume keywords are highly competitive, and ranking for them might be incredibly hard. Instead, focusing on specific, long-tail keywords can help you attract an audience that’s genuinely interested in what you have to offer. 
  • Ignoring the relevance: Relevant keywords are the heart of effective keyword research. The keyword needs to align with your product and your customer’s intent. If a keyword isn’t relevant to your product, it may attract the wrong audience, leading to a high bounce rate and negatively affecting your SEO ranking. 
  • Not updating keywords regularly: Just like fashion changes with seasons, so do keywords. Trends, seasons, new product features, and shifts in consumer desires can all lead to changes in the keywords potential customers are using. Regularly updating your keyword list ensures you stay relevant and visible. 
  • Overuse of keywords: Also called keyword stuffing, this mistake is quite common. While keywords are important, overdoing them can make your content seem unnatural and spammy, leading search engines to penalize your site. Balance is key! 
  • Inattention to analytics: You need to regularly evaluate your keyword strategy’s effectiveness using analytics. You can use tools like Google Search Console to determine metrics like organic traffic, bounce rates, and conversion rates to see if your keywords are performing well or need adjustment. 

Surely, recognizing and avoiding these common pitfalls can significantly improve your eCommerce keyword research and lead to noticeable improvements in your search engine optimization efforts.

Measuring The Success Of Your Chosen Keywords

Analyzing conversion rates for a keyword

Measuring the success of your chosen keywords is pivotal in evaluating the success of your eCommerce strategy and redefining your future marketing plans. This is done by examining numerous metrics – from your site’s search engine rankings to click-through rates (CTR) and conversion rates. 

  • Rankings: One of the first ways to assess the impact of your keywords is by tracking your site’s search engine rankings for each keyword. If they rank high, it means your SEO efforts are paying off. However, if they rank low or do not appear in the top results, it’s time to rethink your strategy or opt for different keywords. 
  • Organic traffic: Increasing organic traffic to your eCommerce store is often a direct result of successful keyword implementation. Take note of any increase in traffic to your site or specific product pages after you’ve implemented your keywords, as this can indicate their effectiveness. 
  • Conversion rates: The ultimate goal of keyword research is to drive potential customers to your site and convert them into actual buyers. Therefore, tracking your conversion rates – the number of visitors who make a purchase after landing on your site – is crucial. A high conversion rate is an indication of successful keyword usage. 
  • Click-Through Rates (CTR): Your keywords should entice users to click your product listings over others on search engine result pages. The more clicks your listings receive, the higher your CTR. A high CTR is a good sign that your keywords are relevant and attractive to your target audience. 
Key Takeaway

While each of these individual metrics is important, it’s crucial to remember that the true measure of success lies in how they collectively contribute to increased revenue and profit for your eCommerce store. For instance, if your keywords increase traffic but your conversion rate is low, it may mean that your site is attracting irrelevant traffic.

Need help with a direction? Check out our keyword research services.

Conclusion

In conclusion, eCommerce keyword research is far from an optional aspect of your online commerce strategy. It’s absolutely essential for the growth and sustainability of your business.

Keyword research is a game-changer that can elevate your store from ‘just another online shop’ to a ‘go-to destination for quality, value, and convenience.’ 

FAQs

What is the difference between short-tail and long-tail keywords?

Short-tail keywords are typically one or two words and are very broad. For example, “shoes” or “electronics” are short-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords are typically three or more words and are more specific. For example, “affordable men’s running shoes under $100” or “noise-canceling wireless Bluetooth earbuds” are long-tail keywords.

How do I find relevant keywords for my products?

There are a number of ways to find relevant keywords for your products. You can use keyword research tools like Semrush or Ahrefs, or you can simply search for your products on Amazon or Google and see what suggested keywords appear. You can also use Google’s Keyword Planner tool to get data on keyword search volume and competition.

How do I optimize my product listings for relevant keywords?

Once you have a list of relevant keywords, you need to optimize your product listings for those keywords. This means including the keywords in your product titles, descriptions, and tags. You should also use the keywords in your website’s content and meta descriptions.

How do I track my keyword performance?

It is important to track your keyword performance so that you can see how your keywords are performing and make adjustments to your strategy as needed. You can use Google Analytics to track your keyword traffic and see which keywords are driving the most traffic to your website.

How often should I do keyword research?

You should do keyword research on a regular basis so that you can stay up-to-date on the latest trends and identify new keyword opportunities. I recommend doing keyword research at least once a month.

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Ajay Deep

Hi, I'm Ajay Deep, founder and CEO of Authority Ventures. I work as a strategy consultant - passionately aiding businesses in optimizing their digital presence. Apart from working with clients, I also work on some niche websites - which are my own experimental projects. One of my website recently got acquired by a Fortune500 company (for a whooping 6-digit figure). Click below to know more about me and my work.

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