Link building is often thought of as getting other websites to link to your website. This strategy is called external link building and is part a good search engine optimization (SEO) strategy. Studies show your keyword ranking results do improve as you gain more exposure and credit on the web via other websites, blogs, and social media outlets who link to your website. As the number of links pointing to your website grows, and the quality of the sites that link to you improve, your website will gain credibility to search engines that will then move you up above your competitors.
Internal link building, which is often overlooked, is web site optimization strategy that should be done when creating your site, whether your web site is an eCommerce website or not. Internal link building also plays an important role in eCommerce SEO. Internal links on keywords from pages on your website to other pages on your website significantly impact search engine rankings, search engine “crawlability,” and become very useful for users who will notice improved user experience.
To tackle internal link building effectively, especially with an eCommerce website, there are several things one should do.
1. Link pages of specific subjects to other pages with relevant content related to that subject. Linking between pages tells search engines to discover the topics you are projecting and group similar topic pages together. This grouping, if well thought out, tells the engines how much content you have about a particular topic. Do not link all keyword to all page that has that keyword because you can confuse the search engines.
2. Build pages for your brands (brand landing pages) and you can automatically create a page with keywords related to a brand, products the brand offers that you sell, categories of products you have for the brand, and any other brand relevant text. Brand pages are a way to link category keywords and more in another page of your site. If you have 30 brands, like a shoe store may, you can add 30 pages of keywords to your site.
3. Add Related Items to Product Details – Users click on a product details page to find out all information about a product. One should display related products on this ecommerce cart page as well which creates links to other products on the site. Search engines can see/index the site with more ease and rate relevance between pages.
4. Add Brand Links – Add links to Brand Pages on your product details pages and relevant resource pages. When you list the product information, list a link to the brand page. Also, one can create a related brands list which will list all brands that have products in similar categories as the particular product we are discussing.
5. Hot Deals, Featured Items, Most Popular – Add a section like this on your home page. Within this section, list your most desirable products and make sure the product name and even a short description show. These are all keyword opportunities and one can even tag images with good ecommerce website cart software.
6. Blogs – Blogs are simple to set up and absolutely help if you use the blog to write about and link to topics, services, and products on your website. Make sure your text in blog posts link to products and pages in your website.
7. Static Page Scan – Go through all of your website pages and link from keywords in that content to your landing pages. Consider your users all of the time and make sure you do not distract them from website goals. Internal link building can help users when done right and appropriately in that links go to pages that make sense.
8. Breadcrumbs – Use these for usability and anchor text differentiation.
9. Site Map – Use a sitemap, Sitemaps are good for search engines and visitors.
10. Be Consistent – Linking behavior is important in that one does not want to link to myhomepage.com on one page and myhomepage.com/index.php on another page and myhomepage.com/index.php&id=343 on another.
11. Optimize Existing Links – Contact prominent websites that link to you and ask them to change.
Internal link building is now a crucial component of effective search engine optimization that is too often overlooked. Properly planned and designed internal linking is a great help for visitors, along with search engines, and by improving the user experience to both users and search engines, your website gains an expert reputation in its field.