Top Tips for eCommerce Omnichannel Retailers to Optimize Product Listings

Yoav Maor / April 24, 2017

You’ve heard it before, but we’ll say it again.

It is absolutely vital to optimize product listings if you want to generate conversions, and lots of ‘em.

And the single reason behind this truism is Search. Your product pages—whether on your own eCommerce store or on a secondary marketplace—are essentially meaningless if they don’t show up in a shoppers’ organic search.

You can find plenty of articles online regarding best practices for product titles, images, keywords, product categorization, descriptions, reviews, and a whole lot more.

However what’s most important, especially if you’re an omnichannel seller, are the differences between the various eCommerce marketplaces and how to best optimize your listings for each one.

The following 4 how-tos will help you achieve perfection in your eCommerce omnichannel product listings:

Tip Number 1: Keep Your Product Listing Titles Trim

Not only will shoppers skim over your product listings if the title isn’t direct and clear, but marketplace algorithms will as well.

For your product listing to be picked up and listed in organic search, you must include as much relevant information in your title as possible including product name, size, color, brand, and quantity.

The real challenge, however, is to do all this within certain character limitations.

On Amazon, the title limit was recently changed to a maximum of 50 characters in most categories. On eBay, it’s 80. And on Google Shopping it’s 150 characters, although they recommend you don’t go over 70.

Any titles longer than these recommendations will just get cut off and do damage to your organic search rankings.

Even on your own website, where you can create as long a title as you like, bear in mind that if best practice means short titles, you’re probably better off adhering to this piece of advice too.

The title for this kettle featured on Amazon contains all the main product listing information a shopper would want to know—brand name, type, capacity item model number, all under the character requirements of Amazon.

Automated product listing tools such as Sigmento can help your eCommerce business create optimized titles that will help rank better than the competition.

Tip Number 2: Choose your Product Categories Wisely

There are two types of shoppers; those who know exactly what product they want, and those who prefer to browse.

Creating appropriate product categories and logical navigational hierarchies on your own eCommerce site will help both types of shoppers compare products, filter easily, and eventually decide what they want to purchase.

When selling on marketplaces, make sure to comply with the specific categorization requirements of each individual item.

For example, on Amazon, a baby bottle could fit into a bunch of different categories, including “Baby” and “Health, Household & Baby Care”. Whereas on Google Shopping, only one relevant category exists—“Baby & Toddler”.

It may take some research, but you’ll have to decipher which is the most popular and suitable category for each of your product listings on each marketplace.

Choosing the wrong one could make the difference between 50 and 500 conversions for your product listings.

It’s also important to specify as closely as possible to your exact product type in order to maximize the chances of your product showing up in a shopper’s search.

Google Shopping, for example, has over 6,000 categories and subcategories to choose from.

So if you sell guitar straps, you could simply choose the category: Arts & Entertainment > Hobbies & Creative Arts > Musical Instrument & Orchestra Accessories.

However, you’re far better off diving a bit deeper to Arts & Entertainment > Hobbies & Creative Arts > Musical Instrument & Orchestra Accessories > String Instrument Accessories > Guitar Accessories > Guitar Straps.

By targeting a more precise product category, you allow your product listings to have a more targeted, eager to purchase customer base.

Tip Number 3: Be Specific for Filters

Product filters enable shoppers to narrow down their search and find exactly the product listing they desire.

This means you should include ALL the specifics about a product, as well as all the info each marketplace asks for (even the optional ones!), for each individual listing.

For example, when you search for “kettle” on Amazon, the filters you can choose from include characteristics to do with the actual kettle (brand, cookware material, price, condition), as well as other characteristics unique to Amazon.

These include whether the product is Prime-eligible, available in frustration-free packaging, etc.

An eBay search for “kettle”, however, brings up different filters. There are more filters than on Amazon regarding the characteristics of the kettle (type, colour and power), and the eBay-specific filters include the format of the listing, the item’s location etc.

The more specific the information, the deeper the shopper can drill down, and the richer the search will be.

Tip Number 4: Unique Content for Product Listings is Critical

Our final tip is to create unique content wherever possible. Even if you’re selling the same product on multiple websites, the key is to switch your product descriptions up a bit so it won’t feature elsewhere in exactly the same format.

It’s a pain to do but it’s a must, since duplicate content can and will get ignored by search engines.

Rather than falling back on the manufacturer product description, CPCStrategy suggest that sellers start with writing brand new SEO optimized descriptions for their top 50-100 best sellers.

Good luck!