There are many ways to setup a blog, depending on the ecommerce platform you are using.
If you are already on WordPress and Woocommerce then adding a blog is a very easy task since this is already build in to WordPress. If you are not using Woocommerce, you can still setup a WordPress Blog as a subdomain i.e. blog.myecommercewebsite.com or folder myecommercewebsite.com/blog. What is important is to use one of the two versions above (i.e. subdomain or folder) and NOT to setup a blog on its own domain.
The reason is that you want to take advantage of the pages/posts of the blog and increase the number of pages you have in the index and of course to consolidate the link juice from any incoming links pointing to the blog pages.
Hint: You can read my detailed guide on how to setup a WordPress Blog to get started in minutes.
Other things to take care, related to the setup of your ecommerce blog:
- Make sure that https is enabled on the blog. Your ecommerce website should already have an SSL installed and the should be true for the blog as well.
- You don’t have to create all the categories that you have in your website as blog categories. Your blog can have a structure that makes sense for a blog.
- Do optimize your blog category pages though, they are important for SEO.
- Follow all SEO best practices for optimizing a website, as described in The Complete SEO Guide.
- Don’t forget to add a BLOG menu in your main menu, sitemap and footer. People are familiar with the term Blog and many times they are searching for it.
- Once your blog grows and traffic starts to flow in, you need to add several CTA (calls to action) boxes to either redirect some of the traffic to your product pages, or get them to sign up to a newsletter so that you have their contact details for email marketing
Hint: Look at my blog and see the various CTA’s I have for redirecting interested users to my services and ebook pages.
- Add the appropriate schema data to your blog post (schema.org/article or schema.org/review depending on the case).
- Add support for Accelerated Mobile Pages for the blog. AMP blog posts have more chances of appearing in the Google News Carousel. This can give you an advantage, especially if you publish posts related to product reviews.
What you should blog about?
That’s a very interesting question and one of the most common questions I get from ecommerce owners when performing an SEO Audit.
Regardless of the niche you are in, there are always topics to cover in your blog. How do you find them?
If you have done your keyword research correctly, you should already have a list of nice long tail keywords you can target in your blogs.
Look at the example below, and make sure that you read section “Keyword research for ecommerce blogs” in my keyword research for ecommerce post.
Tools like SEMRUSH (shown in the above screenshot) will make this process much easier and more effective.
Get Ideas from Competitors
Checkout the blogs of your competitors. What topics do they cover in their posts? What kind of content do they publish (text, videos, etc)? How often do they blog? Of course, you don’t want to copy their exact titles and content but knowing how they are utilizing blogging can give you some ideas too. If they don’t have an active blog then this is even better, it means that by maintaining a blog you will be a step ahead.
Product Reviews and How to Guides
Most people before making a purchase decision they like to read product reviews, how-to guides, comparisons with other products and other related information. These are great topics for blog posts. You can write in-depth guides with nice videos showing how your products can be used or how they compare with other similar products.
When doing so make sure that your blog post titles have this format:
Product name Review – Site Name
For example: Nespresso Inissia Review – MyCoffeeShop
The reason is simple, you want your blog posts to appear high in search when people search for reviews of the specific product. One of the concerns many people have is that Google will not rank reviews published on the blog of an ecommerce website selling the products. This is not the case. Google knows that the review is published on a website selling the product but good product reviews can still rank high. If you follow some basic rules on how to write SEO Friendly content, these posts will also show up for terms like “your brand name – Reviews” and this has a lot of advantages for your brand’s reputation.
Tell your story
People love to read success stories and your company blog is a great place to share your story with your audience. Story telling is another opportunity for you to promote your brand and build trust with your potential customers. For example, let’s say that you have an ecommerce website selling custom made rings (which is a highly completive market dominated by giant companies). You can publish a story on your blog on how you started your business, explain your passion with making custom rings and how happy it makes you to get nice comments from customers etc. Potential customers reading your story will feel more confident to buy a ring from you because any fears they may had about your company, are overcome by your personal story.