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SEO 36 min read

E-Commerce Website Redesign: Ultimate SEO Checklist

E-Commerce Website Redesign: Ultimate SEO Checklist
E-Commerce Website Redesign: Ultimate SEO Checklist
Bhujal Patel
Marketing & E-Commerce Specialist at MyDigitalKube
Redesigning a website involves changing different site elements at a high level: codes, content, structure, and so on. It's much more than the visual design of a website. Many factors must be updated to affect the overall traffic and conversions positively.

An attractive website is essential, but it won't matter if it can't convert visitors into leads.

Fortunately, there are several powerful redesigning techniques that can help you customize your brand and improve sales and conversions. These are listed in the article below.
Contents

1. E-Commerce Website Revamp Process: 7 Steps

Revamping your eCommerce site should be planned in detail. Here below, you'll find a 7-step checklist that will help you achieve the best results.

1.1 Creating a New Look

First impressions are important, and your website's look is visitors' first impression. If it's not appealing, customers will leave. Your website design helps put visitors at ease, so keep it updated to provide the best experience to users.

Here are some hacks you might want to work on when creating a new look for your site:
remove long navigation menus, and unnecessary clutters;   
remove flash player requirements;
add images, icons, and graphics to improve your website (text-heavy websites can overwhelm and bore visitors);
go for simple designs (minimalist designs are more beautiful and attract more sales).

1.2 Choosing a New E-Commerce Host

Choosing an e-commerce host implies selecting a web hosting platform or eCommerce platforms like Shopify and BigCommerce. Such platforms provide your site with essential tools, including payment processing, security, SSL, and shopping cart software.

Choosing the right hosting plan during the redesign process is vital for your site. A good host helps you keep the traffic, make customers happy, and get good brand positioning.

It is particularly important in today's world where everyone seeks fast internet connection speeds. Research has shown that 47% of consumers expect eCommerce websites to load within two seconds.
Page load speed should be an e-commerce store owner’s top priority. Many of our clients prioritize things like beautiful photography and site design. Those are important, but if your site isn’t loading extremely quickly, nothing else matters. Your customer is gone.
Steve Pogson (Founder of E-Commerce agency FirstPier)
Sadly, about 79% of these consumers never return to a site after a poor loading or browsing experience. More than that, Google considers site speed when ranking a website.

Hence, make sure your eCommerce platform has quality hosting to avoid future problems.

1.3 Determining a Content Migration Plan

Now that you have a host, the next step is to move your content from the old website. The first thing you should do before moving is to take stock of what you have and what you need.

Find out where your platform falls short right now. Make a list of "must-haves" to get started. The most important things for enterprise-level stores and those who want to get to that business level are speed and volume.

Some companies need their platform to handle big jumps in traffic without crashing. Others need a platform that can manage rapid growth in both the number of visitors and the number of SKUs (stock keeping units).

1.4 Database Migration: Current Orders, Products, Customers, Passwords

Before moving to a new eCommerce platform, it is essential to look at the data on your legacy platform to decide what needs to be moved and what can stay where it is. You should also download a backup of the data you already have if the migration doesn't go smoothly. Decide which third-party apps you want to keep and which you want to get rid of, since some may be outdated.

You can move your data in one of three ways: by hand, with a migration app, or with the help of an outside team.

When moving data from your old platform to your new one, you should think about two main types of data: product data and customer/order data

  • Moving your product data manually is best since automated migrations can get complicated quickly when you have different product options, bundled packages, carts, and themes. When you move product data manually, you can be sure that the information is transferred correctly.
  • When it comes to customer data, on the other hand, an automated migration app is enough because address and order history data is usually the same everywhere.
You should keep an up-to-date copy of your product catalog on your old platform since there are "hard" references to products, categories, etc.

Migrating Sites Like a Pro: Interview With Simon Cox

1.5 Transfer SEO: Redirects, Sitemaps, Structured Data

SEO migration ensures that you don't lose any of your search engine visibility (rankings and traffic) when you move your website. Your eCommerce site has built up organic visibility over time, which has helped your customers easily spot you on search engines.

When you change your URLs or your site's content, you adjust what search engines know about your site and how they've ranked it. Any time a website moves, the goal is to lose as little traffic as possible. Doing a thorough SEO migration minimizes traffic loss.

When migrating to a new platform, consider the following SEO settings:
Check that the Google Analytics tracking code is active.
Examine links in emails and downloadable content.
Examine the hierarchy and structure of your current website.
Inspect your Metadata.
If the URLs of your product and category pages have changed, you must implement 301 redirects.
Remove any redundant content.
Review any necessary catalog transfers and include them in the new website. This includes customer data files, product catalogs, and assets or content such as product images.

1.6 Testing & QA

Before launching the new e-commerce website, it's essential to test it thoroughly to ensure the migration went well. The testing phase is the longest as you have to check several new website components.

You should start with an SEO audit. To ensure that your new website is optimized, do a full SEO audit of the website as part of your testing.

Serpstat will perfectly fit this task. You can use this platform to:

➡️ scan any site page to check for on-site issues;
➡️ sort out technical issues by their priority;
➡️ see recommendations for fixing issues that have a higher impact on your rankings;
➡️ track the growth dynamics of the site optimization level;
➡️ schedule automatic checks, and monitor if the number of issues found is decreasing.
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Check all the other parts, features, and functions to make sure that no typos, bugs, or mistakes were missed during the importation process. 

A few other tests you can do include:
  • putting test orders on your new platform and paying for them with all the available methods;
  • testing the platform on popular browsers like Chrome, Firefox, and Safari;
  • using both a phone and a tablet to test your platform on mobile, especially on iOS and Android.
Pro Tip: You can pay a professional to check your website to ensure all parts are functional.
We worked with a CRO (conversion rate optimization) agency to ensure customers found our site easy to use ... reviewing heatmap data and listening to testers share their thoughts on the browsing experience was really eye-opening.
 Dr. Ritesh Jain of mattress reviews blog, What a Sleep.

1.7 Launch & Grow

After putting your platform through several tests and ensuring it works well, you can now launch it knowing that customers will have a good time with it. 

Don't forget to coordinate all the processes afterward and keep on track with SERP checkers. You can use Serpstat Rank Tracker Tool to monitor your website rankings in mobile, desktop organic, and paid searches. It allows you to:

➡️ get an accurate overview of your organic positions in the search;
➡️ analyze your market share and assess your potential;
➡️ evaluate which SERP features drive traffic to your site;
➡️ check the search ranking for your website, compare it to your competitors, and find new possibilities to appear in search engine top results;
➡️ see how stormy are the SERPs to correct your strategy in time.
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2. Best E-Commerce Website Redesign Tips and Tricks

The following are some proven tricks that can help you during the redesign process.

2.1 Homepage Optimization

Your homepage is the heart of your website. It is the first place your customers view when they visit your website. Here below, you will find some proven tips to better grab the clients' attention from the very beginning.
  • Utilize Simple Website Design

The more difficult it is for your customers to find what they are looking for on your website, the less satisfied they will be with your brand. This leads to two possible outcomes: either your customers don't find what they need or leave without checking what you propose. Both scenarios are unsuitable for your business, so you must avoid having a complicated design.

Here are some points to consider when optimizing your e-commerce homepage:
to keep your website organized, use a straightforward navigation menu and appropriately named sections;
remember that simple is always best; the more you have going on, the more difficult it will be to direct your customers to your intended call-to-action (CTA);
consider creating separate e-commerce websites if your product/service catalog is extensive, or you serve a wide range of customers (e.g., B2B and B2C).
  • Consider Mobile Experience

A lot of shoppers in the US use smartphones and tablets to interact with brands. If you want to reach mobile customers, your store must be optimized for mobile. That is:

→ responsive design on mobile;
→ fast website load time on mobile;
→ optimized images and videos for mobile;
→ simple checkout process on mobile.

Conduct mobile A/B testing to know what works and what doesn't. Mobile A/B testing isn't as straightforward as for desktop because shoppers may use mobile as a touchpoint. Customers may see something on mobile, but complete the purchase on a desktop. 

To overcome this challenge, you must understand how customers use mobile to interact with your store before split testing. You can then proceed to test mobile sites or app elements just like on the desktop.

How to Optimize Your Website for Mobile Devices

  • Include Primary Calls-to-Actions

According to Ilija Sekulov from Mailbutler.io, “People want and sometimes need direction. Use strong CTAs to guide visitors. CTAs can improve website navigation and conversions.”

CTAs should include verbs to encourage action. When it comes to CTAs, simple is best. However, you can experiment by adding and removing words to see which works best.

Color matters for CTA buttons. Hubspot compared a red button to a green button, and the red button converted 21% more users. What's more, many companies use a color that stands out from their brand's color palette and white space to draw attention to the CTA.
  • Demonstrate Site Security

One of the problems with online shopping is the security of information. Online shoppers want assurances that their data is secure when they shop. If your website is secure, you'll convert more visitors.

Your homepage should feature trusted seals and badges as footer items. Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificates are vital for your eCommerce website. Otherwise, the browser will label your site "not secure" and won't display it.

2.2 Category Page Optimization

After working on your homepage, proceed to your category page. The following are some of the best design practices to improve your category page.
  • Promote the Latest Arrivals at the Top

Even if most of your products will live on internal product pages, you can highlight your latest arrivals on the homepage. Putting your latest products on display gives customers an instant idea of what is available. It helps you take advantage of quick rush sales.

You can also test which products perform best on the homepage over time. You should experiment with displaying bestsellers, seasonal items, or new products on the homepage. See what works best for you and stick with it.
  • Show Personalized Product Recommendation

Customers nowadays expect personalized shopping recommendations from eCommerce websites. After receiving personalized content, up to 34% of consumers are more likely to make an unplanned purchase, according to Forbes. It makes them feel special and creates an impression that you care about their needs.

You can do this using data from the web and social analytics, which shows who they are, what they like, and where they've been on your site. This is what can increase a customer's engagement and lead to additional purchases.
  • Add a Search Bar and Filter Options

→ While most of your visitors will be content to simply browse the site in search of items that appeal to them, some of them will have a specific goal in mind. A search bar gives your customers with specific needs the ability to navigate directly to the page they require.

→ Filters help users find what they need among many products. Most eCommerce sites today have mobile filter overlays that help customers find products they want using specific keywords.
When editing your HTML Heading Tags (like main heading H1, and subheadings H2, H3, H4, H5, and H6), you should pay attention to the words your audience frequently uses.

You can pick the right keywords that attract your audience using Serpstat Keyword Research Tools. It can help you collect real-time search suggestions and find out the interests of your audience to write effective content and edit tags.
The service shows similar keywords based on the similarity of the top-20 of their search results, for which there are at least two pages at the top as in the analyzed keyword. For example: 

  • "Related Keywords" report represents all search queries that are semantically related to the searched keyword. This is where you can check and use new variations of the queries. 
  • "Search Suggestions" report shows the queries offered to users under the search bar.
  • "Search Questions" report is where you can see all question forms of search suggestions. These are questions that include a selected keyword that users are looking for an answer to.
Overview the most popular keywords, improve your site pages and attract new visitors using this tool with a great variety of reports. 
Want to learn more about Serpstat's Keyword Research Tools?
Send a request for a free personal demo of the service, and our expert will contact you ;)
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2.3 Product Page Optimization

After searching through the categories, your customers will proceed to select the products they want. This stage is important as you have caught their attention. The following are some revamping tricks to improve your product page.  
  • Create Consistent Branding

Consumers today often switch between websites or apps when shopping online. 85% of customers begin a purchase on one device and finish it on another. This means you must ensure brand consistency across all of your pages.

Customers should see the same colors and messages on all your website pages. Different branding on your pages could confuse your customers, especially if they switch websites during purchase. 

Why Your SEO Strategy Should Primarily Focus on Brand Building

  • Quality Content Only

Don't mistake using pixelated images, huge image renders, and sites with no product photos. Customers are more likely to buy products if they can see them. So, take good photos of your products, so as better picture quality increases product appeal

Use high-quality, small-file-size images on your product pages. This improves web store page performance and user experience. A good idea would be to add videos, as they capture a product's look better than images.
While optimizing your videos and pictures, do not forget that content includes the text in your product description. Ensure to provide accurate information, including inventories and pricing.

According to a survey by Emarketer, 83 percent of respondents believe that high-quality product images and descriptions help them decide to buy products. So:
make sure you have customized product descriptions for your products;
your descriptions should highlight the main benefits of your product;
your description should be well written with simple English and short paragraphs;
avoid grammar errors;
use a variety of high-quality product images and videos;
use bullets where necessary.
It is possible to use a spelling checker in Serpstat to ensure that your text is mistake-free. Here is how it works:
Simply go to the "Content analysis" section → "Grammar and spelling." You will be redirected to the app that finds mistakes in your text, highlights and corrects them. Enter your text, and press the "Check!" button. The corrected text will be available below in a few seconds. 

This tool is based on Machine Learning generative model. Make the most out of this and other Content Analysis tools.
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  • Include Reviews and Testimonials

If you want your e-commerce website design to stand out from the crowd, you must collect and display your best customer reviews. You need reviews to make sales because 90 percent of customers read reviews, and 88 percent trust them. Reviews provide social proof and are extremely helpful in persuading new customers.

  • Develop methods for continually sourcing reviews and adding new testimonials to these areas.
  • Display your most vibrant reviews and testimonials prominently.
  • For an added boost, consider using customer faces and names.

2.4 Checkout Page Optimization

Shopping cart abandonment is a significant issue for eCommerce retailers. According to the Baymard Institute, the average cart abandonment rate is about 70 percent. Most often, cart abandonment happens because of faulty checkout pages or processes. 

Optimizing checkout pages is critical as it can help you make more sales. Here are some ways to do so.
  • Integrate Payment Options

To avoid losing your customers, ensure you have as many payment options. Aside from the regular credit card payment option, look into payment wallet services. Examples include PayPal, Apple Pay, and Android Pay. They are becoming increasingly prevalent as options on e-commerce checkout flows. 

In fact, they may eliminate the traditional checkout and use of credit cards and cash because they are easy to use. Therefore, you should consider using them on your eCommerce website. 
  • Optimize Checkout Process

Shopping cart abandonment is a major issue for eCommerce stores. According to research, the average shopping cart abandonment rate is 69 percent.

Cart abandonment can result in significant losses for your business. That is why you must optimize your checkout process for maximum returns. Make some adjustments to your design and content in the following ways:
Avoid adding unanticipated charges to your total payment amount (taxes, shipping).
Create a straightforward checkout procedure (cart > billing > shipping > preview > payment > confirmation).
Include a button that allows customers to keep shopping at the checkout stage.
Offer a graphical representation of the steps involved in the purchasing process.
On the checkout page, you should include checkout buttons at the top and the bottom.
Offer reassurance to customers by displaying shopping security seals and logos of credit cards.
Only request the information necessary to facilitate the purchase.
  • Add Shipping and Tracking Information

One of the most important aspects of a great customer experience is informing people when their items will arrive. According to ProShip, nearly all customers (80 percent) expect to be able to track their online orders.

When prospective customers are unsure when they will receive their products, most will not complete the purchase. Giving your customers all the information they need is one of the simplest ways to improve the conversion rate of your e-commerce website.

How to Make a Checkout Form In an Online Store

Pro Tip: Think like you’re a customer :)

Put yourself in the shoes of a typical website visitor. What would you like to see if you were to buy something from your store?

Try to locate specific products by clicking through your navigation links. If you can't find the products with a few mouse clicks or taps on your mobile device, your site may need more improvements.

3. Why Redesign an eCommerce Website?

Website redesign requires time, effort, and money. Considering the level of commitment you will need, you must be sure if this is the best move for your business. 

The following are some indicators to help you decide if a redesign is necessary for your business.

3.1 Mobile-First Experience

Most of us make mobile purchases, and Google's Mobile-First Index concept came from this. Mobile-friendly websites get higher SERP rankings, as search results favor them. 

Responsive websites make online sharing easy, so visitors are more likely to share on social media. Customers won't purchase from a mobile-unfriendly site, so you need to optimize your website for mobile devices to reach your market. 

3.2 Improved Branding

It is important that your website is consistent with your brand. Your company's identity should be reflected in every aspect of your website, from the font to the logo. If you don't, your customers may not differentiate you from competitors.

Redesigning your website with an emphasis on your brand is necessary to establish a distinct identity for your company. When people visit your website, they subconsciously associate elements of your brand with your company.

3.3 Better SEO

Search engine optimization is a major factor in ranking. It is how potential clients come across your company and its wares.  

Suppose your website has up-to-date information, accurate descriptions, current posts, and recently updated content. In that case, Google will be able to crawl it effectively and present customers with the information that is most relevant to them and the most recent.

So, if your eCommerce site has SEO issues, you need to consider redesigning. To know more about eCommerce SEO, check out this ultimate guide.

3.4 Smooth UI/UX

UI/UX refers to the user experience and interface of your website. These two factors can impact nearly every aspect of your website's performance, from search rankings and bounce rate to conversions and user satisfaction.

Users should be able to easily find specific content when visiting your website for the first time. Visitors who find navigating complicated or confusing will leave quickly and will not engage with your business.

The Psychology Behind Engaging User Experience

4. Excellent eCommerce Website Design Examples

Here are two examples of eCommerce websites with excellent designs and comments about what makes them impressive.

4.1 Petco

Petco is a pet eCommerce store with an attractive website design.

→ Its homepage has a simple and attractive design that provides easy navigation.
→ It has a search bar in the header, which you will find across all store pages.
→ The CTAs are clear and easy to understand across all sections.
→ Product page provides enough details about the product (both in texts and images) and includes ratings and reviews for social proof. 

4.2 Dermstore

Dermstore is a skincare store that sells skin care products. Its design is simple and cool.

→ One thing I love about the homepage is that it includes a product video at the bottom of the page. Adding a video to a store homepage is not something you see every day, but it does improve customer experience, especially if you sell a new product.
→ Dermstore also has a search bar in the store's header, which appears on all pages. The menus at the top provide easy navigation for buyers to find products.
→ Finally, a checkout page is that it offers several payment options for buyers.

5. Cost Consideration For an eCommerce Website Redesign

If you are paying to redesign your eCommerce website, you will need the services of web designers and UI/UX specialists. These professionals charge between $60 and $130 on average per hour

The following are some of the factors that can affect the total cost of redesigning your eCommerce website:
the scale and nature of the project;
methodologies and procedures of design;
the architectural standard and the geographical aspect.

6. Final Thoughts

E-commerce website redesign boosts conversions and online success. You can create a conversion-optimized web store design, even if you're not the most creative or don't have an in-house designer.

You'll sell more when you update and optimize your site with the best practices. And using the tips mentioned above, you'll have better chances to boost your daily sales. So, go for it! 
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