In 2020, e-commerce sales rose by 43 percent or around $244.2 billion, according to the most recent release from the Census Bureau’s Annual Retail Trade Survey (ARTS). This increase is from $571.2 billion in 2019 to $815.4 billion in 2020.
The increase was mainly caused by the pandemic, which forced businesses to connect with their target audiences online. To facilitate this, they had to use an e-commerce platform to sell their products and services in the market.
An e-commerce platform is essential to any business that wants to achieve success. It’s the foundation for building your online presence and selling your products or services. To ensure that your e-commerce platform runs as efficiently and effectively as possible, you need to optimize it for maximum performance. Here are some tips for optimizing an e-commerce platform.
Reduce Page Load Time
The longer it takes for a page to load, customers will likely become frustrated and navigate away from your site. To reduce the page load time, use caching plugins, minify code, reduce redirects, and compress images. These steps will help improve the overall user experience of your site by making pages easier and faster to navigate.
When reducing page load time, you should also consider using a content delivery network (CDN). A CDN allows your site to store static content on multiple servers in different locations, such as images and scripts. This helps reduce loading times by getting the data closer to the user’s location.
You can also consider using the Shopify headless e-commerce architecture. In this design, the front and back end of the application are separated. It lets you manage developer and buyer experiences using the e-commerce platform. You can see rapid page-to-page load times when you go headless, especially if you select a progressive web application (PWA) for this purpose.
You also want to ensure that your navigation is easy and intuitive so customers can easily find what they’re looking for. Include a search bar on every page so customers can quickly locate what they need without clicking through multiple pages. Additionally, ensure all links are up-to-date, so users don’t encounter broken links or 404 errors when accessing certain pages or products on your website.
Finally, consider simplifying your navigation to reduce the number of clicks customers need to make to get from one page to another. You also want to take a look at how you’re categorizing items on your website. Ensure all related products are placed under the same category or subcategory for easier access.
For example, if you’re a clothing store, make sure that all the tops are placed under “Tops” and bottoms under “Bottoms” so customers don’t have to search around for what they’re looking for.
Consider adding a mega menu or dropdown menu if you’re offering multiple categories on your website. This can make navigation more efficient. Lastly, consider adding a sitemap to your website so that customers can easily find what they’re looking for by seeing an overview of all the pages on your website.
Content is integral in optimizing an e-commerce platform because it helps establish brand identity and drives traffic to the website. Ensure all website content is high quality and relevant to the product being sold. Additionally, create content that provides value for customers, such as blog posts, videos, tutorials, etc., to engage them with your brand and keep them coming back for more.
You should also include target keywords throughout the content so search engines can accurately index your website in their results pages. Finally, ensure the content is optimized for mobile devices so customers can access it anywhere. By optimizing your content, you’ll be able to maximize its reach and engagement potential.
Optimize Image SEO
Images on e-commerce platforms can often go overlooked, even though they play a critical role in driving customer engagement. Ensure images are optimized for search engines by including descriptive alt tags and captions that reflect the content on the page. Additionally, compress images to minimize loading times without sacrificing image quality.
Also, ensure that image file names are relevant to their context. So they appear on search engine results pages when customers look for them. Optimizing your images is a great way to get more visibility and engagement from users. It also helps with SEO by making your content more relevant to search engines.
Lastly, create an image sitemap to help search engine crawlers find and index images more efficiently. This can help boost your website’s visibility in the search engine results pages. Incorporating these steps into your e-commerce platform will ensure that customers have a positive experience when viewing your images while at the same time helping you get more organic search traffic.
Optimizing an e-commerce platform is key for any business that wants to succeed online. Following these simple tips can create a user experience that will keep customers returning repeatedly while driving more organic traffic through search engine optimization (SEO). With a well-optimized e-commerce platform, there’s no limit to what you can achieve.