Google gets as many as 5.6 billion searches per day. That’s a lot of potential traffic that you can drive to your dropship webstore for FREE if you have the necessary SEO knowledge and take the right steps when setting up your webpages.
SEO stands for search engine optimization. And the goal of SEO for dropshipping is to get your product and blog pages organically ranked on the first page of Google when someone types in relevant search terms and phrases, also known as keywords.
Paying money to rank for Google keywords is not SEO but something called search engine marketing which is a paid traffic acquisition method. The goal of SEO is to rank on the first page of Google for FREE.
Even though SEO doesn’t cost any money, it does take time to get on that coveted first page of Google so you must optimize your dropship web store product and blog pages properly right from the start. If you already have a store up and running, that’s okay too, starting today you’re going to want to apply what I will teach you in this guide and begin the path to optimal search engine optimization.
What is SEO?
As long as people type words and phrases into Google and other search engines (such as Youtube and Bing) to get answers and solve problems then SEO will be a necessity to work on within your business. If you don’t implement an SEO strategy for your dropship store then you are missing out on a lot of free traffic.
Even though there are other relevant search engines, ranking highly on Google is the first step in any dropshipper’s SEO journey due to Google controlling more than 70% of the global search market. This is why for the entirety of this guide I will explain how the Google search engine operates and ultimately how to rank on the first page of Google for keywords and search queries relevant to your business.
Think of the internet as a massive spider web. Each web page on the entire internet is a component of this spider web. The web is made up of web pages that are connected with hyperlinks.
Search engines like Google build robot spiders called crawlers that travel through the world wide web using the hyperlinks to crawl through every website and webpage it can find collecting the page information for their search engine database.
Once the Google spider crawls through an entire web page it will send that data back to Google for analysis and indexing.
After analysis and indexing, the web page is added to Google’s database and will then be shown to searchers only if and when Google thinks the page is relevant according to the search phrase (or keyword) of the user. Google’s mission is to provide the best possible experience for its users.
At every moment these Google spiders are discovering new web pages as well as checking up on pages already existing within their database. The spiders read every single line of code and piece of content contained in the webpage it is crawling.
What order the web pages appear in a particular search result is determined by an algorithm created by Google. The Google algorithm page ranking structure is determined by hundreds of different variables that Google does not publicly release, but certain variables are considered more important than others.
The most important variables Google considers for ranking a webpage for a particular keyword are:
- On-Site SEO (also known as technical SEO)
- Quality Of Content
- Number and Quality Of Backlinks
There are simple tactics and tips that you can implement into your webstore for every one of these categories that will give your pages a better chance to get ranked well by Google’s algorithm.
Additionally, the type of phrase and/or search query (known as a keyword) you are trying to rank for will also determine how easy or hard it will be to get on the first page of Google.
Within the rest of this SEO for dropshipping guide, we will discuss how to decide what keywords your dropship business should be trying to rank for. Then we will discuss how you can optimize your web pages to get favored by Google’s algorithm using technical SEO, quality content, and backlink building methods.
Once your webpage is optimized for Google’s algorithm, you want it to get indexed by Google as soon as possible and you can do this by adding your domain or URL to Google Search Console.
If you want an even more in-depth and detailed explanation on what SEO is or how it works than check out these articles By Matthew Woodward:
Remember that SEO is an on-going and timely process. It takes time to organically rank highly on search engine result pages so don’t expect to see any major changes in traffic though your SEO efforts for at least 30-90 days. The less difficult the keyword you are trying to rank for the quicker you will see results.
If you implement into your web pages what is discussed in this guide you will be shocked at the amount of free traffic brought in to your dropship store due to simple SEO implementation.
Let’s move onto keywords. If you’re not ranking for the proper keywords your SEO efforts will go to waste and you will not convert traffic.
What Keywords Should You Try To SEO For Dropshipping?
The words and phrases that people input into the Google search bar are known as keywords. These keywords are what the Google search engine database uses to match relevant web pages to the problems that the searcher wants to solve or the answers they want to find out.
You are going to need to optimize your product pages as well as the other pages on your webstore for relevant keyword searches that your customers are typing into Google. If you fail to optimize for these relevant keywords then I assure you that your competitors will and all the free traffic will go to them.
Keywords can be broken down into more specific categories known as short-tail and long-tail keywords.
Short-tail keywords are general keyword phrases that usually contain 1-2 words and tend to be broad or generic searches. These keywords usually have high search volume and are very competitive to try and rank for but do not show any intent from the searcher, therefore this type of search traffic has a very low conversion rate. For SEO we tend to stay away from short-tail keywords.
Long-tail keywords are search phrases with usually 3 or more words and clearly show the intent of the searcher. Long-tail keywords might not always have high search volume but they usually convert at a very high rate. Regarding SEO for dropshipping, we want to rank our business web pages for relevant long-tail keywords.
For us dropshippers and eCommerce store owners we like keyword searches showing intent to buy something the most. However, it’s also important that we try and rank for keywords relevant to our business niche where the searcher shows intent to learn about something or solve a problem.
If we educate, solve problems, and add value to our potential customers that are searching on Google using content such as blog posts, podcasts, videos, and social media posts then those potential customers will be very likely to buy from us in the future.
It usually takes a customer more than one encounter with a business to purchase something. A customer needs to know, like, and trust you and your business before they buy something. This is why in some of our other posts I talk about how important having an email list and posting custom content is to your eCommerce business. We will discuss this more in the quality content section of this guide.
If the keywords you choose to rank for are too broad and/or generic, it will be extremely difficult to rank on the first page of Google because everyone else in your niche is also trying to rank for that keyword. Also with these short-tail broad and generic keywords, the searcher usually isn’t even showing intent to buy or learn something.
To explain how keyword research works, let’s say that I have a dropshipping store that sells photography equipment and accessories.
An example of a short-tail generic keyword relating to my business niche is:
The short-tail keyword “photography” is way too generic to try and rank for. We don’t even know if the searcher has a problem or wants to buy anything. Does the searcher want to look at pretty pictures? Do they want to buy a camera, or maybe they want to learn how to edit quality photographs?
We do not know and have no way to find out. Plus it will be nearly impossible to get on the first page of Google organically for this short-tail keyword because every webpage on the internet that is photography related is trying to rank on Google for this keyword.
Another short-tail keyword that is too broad in our niche example is:
- Photography equipment
This short-tail keyword “photography equipment” is less generic than “photography” and will therefore likely have less competition. The keyword “photography equipment” is also directly related to what we sell in our store. But, we still don’t know the intent of the searcher. Are they looking to buy or learn about photography equipment? What photography equipment specifically is the searcher interested in?
Depending on how competitive (or not competitive) your business niche is, it may be worth trying to rank for some of these broader short-tail keywords. But in a main-stream ultra-competitive market like photography, it’s best to stay away from broad short-tail keywords and focus entirely on more specific long-tail phrases.
Although these types of short-tail keywords may have a high search volume. They are too broad and/or generic to actually gage intent of the searcher and therefore will be very hard to convert customers when ranking for these types of keywords. Furthermore, these keywords are extremely competitive and it will be very difficult to rank on the first page of Google’s search engine results for these types of keywords.
However, it is important to mention as a dropshipper that sometimes you will be selling obscure products in which you will be able to rank for a more broad or rather generic keyword such as the exact product name.
For the majority of the time, the keywords we want to rank for are known as long-tail keywords and make up 70% of all Google searches. Long-tail keywords are ultra-specific keywords that usually contain 3 or more words and also clearly define the intent of the searcher.
You want to try and rank for long-tail keywords relevant to your business niche and the products you sell in which the searcher shows intent to either:
- Buy something
- Learn about something
- Solve a problem
Here are some long-tail keywords with buying intent relevant to our photography equipment and accessories dropship store example:
- “6-inch dimmable studio ring lamp for sale”
- “Where can I buy a mini photo studio”
In these long-tail keyword examples, the searcher is very specific about what and why they are searching on Google. These searchers are looking to buy something. If you were selling a 6-inch Dimmable Studio Ring Lamp (which is a popular dropship product) don’t you think you would want your Ring Lamp product page to rank for that search query above? I know I would.
Another set of long-tail keywords your dropship business might want to rank for are keyword searches where the searcher expresses the intent to learn something or solve a problem. Ranking for long-tail keywords where the searcher is asking a question can also be a very high converting type of traffic.
An example of a long-tail keyword with learning intent using the photography equipment and accessories niche would be:
- “Best camera equipment for hiking”
Let’s say my photography business was to rank on the first page of Google for this keyword with a blog post page or a video that educates the user on the best type of photography equipment/accessories for hiking. The post has a lot of great value/tips and provides products I recommend for sale and how those products solve photography problems when hiking. It’s very likely after reading my post, the now satisfied searcher will eventually buy something from my store. It is even more likely if I could get the searcher to opt-in to my email list after reading the post.
Some other examples of relevant long-tail keywords where the searcher shows intent to learn could be:
- “What equipment do I need to start a photography business”
- “Landscape photography equipment essentials”
Now that you understand what type of keywords you should be trying to rank your business for in terms of SEO for dropshipping, you’re going to want to create a list of 5-10 long-tail keywords relevant to your business that capture the searcher’s intent to buy or learn something.
The reason why we need to collect keywords first is that without knowing what keywords you want to rank for you won’t know how you should be properly optimizing your web pages and the content on those web pages. Keywords are what Google uses to connect your web pages with a searcher.
Luckily as a dropshipper, you can be flexible and when you find a keyword that you may want to rank for, especially a new hot product-related keyword, you can quickly check in with your suppliers and see if you can upload new products to your store related to that keyword and in no time have a fully optimized SEO for dropshipping product page.
To compile relevant keywords to rank for you’re going to need to use an SEO keyword research tool. You can start by creating a Google Ads Account for your business and using the keyword planner tool to discover some keywords and generate keyword ideas that you think might be relevant to your business.
Google Ads is a good starting point but some of the other paid research tools give you so much more data and metrics to work with and you can even paste in your business website URL to see what keywords you may already be ranking for.
Some of the most popular and effective SEO keyword research tools are:
With Moz, you can sign up for a free account, and then their keyword research tool allows you to research 10 keywords per month. If you need to research more keywords with Moz you can then sign up for a 30-day free trial.
I signed up for Moz and started researching long-tail keywords relevant to my camera equipment and accessories dropship store example. I went to Thieve.co to look for trending items in the photography niche and noticed that camera straps are a trending item. So I then started typing in camera strap related keywords on Moz’s keyword research tool and found a winner.
The keyword “leather camera strap” has anywhere from 200-500 average monthly searches, and an 86% organic click-through rate with a keyword difficulty of only 37. When trying to rank for keywords I suggest finding keywords on Moz with a difficulty below 40.
Once you have found a winning keyword it’s time to build a web page or optimize a current web page to rank for the keyword. This starts with creating quality content for the web page and making some simple on-site technical SEO adjustments.
How Content Affects Your Online Store And What You Should Do About It
Having quality content on your product pages as well as having a blog page on your web store filled with material that adds value to your customers is crucial to being ranked well by Google. The longer people stay on your web pages the better.
The content on your web pages must be relevant, emotionally stimulating, and add a lot of value. Having content that helps those that come to your web store is the most important aspect of your web pages and is a top priority.
What keeps users on your webpage are exclusive images and videos as well as lots of emotionally stimulating and informative text content. The more text content you have on your page the better. The more content you have on a web page, the easier it is for the Google spider to understand what your page is about and therefore rank it properly.
Google does not like duplicate content so make sure all your blog posts and product descriptions are authentic and original. Do not just copy and paste the product descriptions and data-feeds right from your supplier’s website.
Product/Category Page Content
For a product page, you’re going to want anywhere from 400-600 words on the page. The more words the better but be sure you don’t put any fluff text on the page that has no meaning or relevance. If you do fill your page with irrelevant content just for SEO purposes than Google could penalize your website.
The best way to add quality content to your product page is by using a copywriting blueprint where you list the feature, benefits, and meaning of the product.
This copywriting style works by first describing a product feature, then explaining what the benefit is of the feature, and then interpreting the meaning of that benefit. Use this copywriting method on every feature available for the product you are selling.
Example (but don’t actually write out feature, benefit, and meaning on your product page):
- Our Leather Camera Strap is made with genuine Tuscany leather
- Which means that our leather camera strap is created with durability for everlasting use and also designed with a timeless style
Meaning Of The Benefit:
- Our leather camera strap will make transporting and holding your camera a safer and more efficient experience for decades to come and will also turn heads everywhere you go due to its style dynamics, which are highly respected in the world of utility accessory fashion
After you run out of features to write about then tell stories about how great it will be using the product and different reasons why you should purchase the product. Write about how the product will help the buyer move away from pain and towards pleasure in various aspects.
- Picture yourself strolling through the city, your wrist is through the comfortable leather camera strap which means you have a free hand available now and can walk with that latte you’ve been thinking about since breakfast. The durable leather wrist strap makes for a comfortable wrist hold and free’s up your hands but also gives you a sense of assurance that your camera is safe.
- This genuine leather camera strap is a great gift for your friend, family member, or significant other who enjoys bringing their camera to take photos at fun events. Instead of going with the usual old gifts get something that will create long-lasting smiles and memories.
- Once this leather camera strap is obtained you will be able to conveniently carry all your stuff around stress-free, you can also forever forget about the fear of dropping your camera.
Once you collect testimonial comments and product reviews, that’s another great way to add relevant text to your page. You’re also going to want to write out any shipping information and guarantees/bonuses you make along with your product.
The keyword that you are trying to rank for should be the most used word on the product page. I suggest scattering the keyword 3-5 times throughout the product page. You don’t want to overuse the keyword because Google will sense something is off and penalize your page for what’s called “keyword stuffing”.
Write out your product page content naturally and if you find the keyword is not used enough then write a few additional sentences using the keyword or see if you can fit the keyword in already existing sentences.
Blog Page Content
If you want to be a real SEO player then I highly suggest you put a blog page in your dropship webstore. Having a blog makes you more of an authority within your niche. With blog posts, you can easily rank for long-tail keywords where the searcher wants to learn something or have a question answered.
Even though the types of Google searches your blog will rank for might not convert as quickly as those with intent to buy, if you help this type of traffic solve their problems and answer their questions then they are highly likely to buy from you in the future.
You’re going to want your blog posts to contain at least 2000 words. You will also want to place the keyword you are trying to rank for throughout the post 7-9 times or more depending on how long your post is.
If you are not a writer or hate writing then there are plenty of websites online where you can hire blog writers, SEO writers, content writers, product description writers, etc. for relatively cheap.
If you’re interested in outsourcing your web page content you can check out the following websites:
Just like with product pages you are going to want to use the keyword you are trying to rank for more than any other word on your page but don’t spam the keyword.
In both your product and blog pages, try to also add relevant images and/or videos that go along with your text. The Google algorithm likes it when there are relevant videos and images on the page because actual users like it when there are videos and images on the page that go along with the text.
It’s also important that you constantly update and improve the content on your pages when necessary. Google likes it when your web pages have fresh, new, updated, and improved content.
On-Site SEO Adjustments You Can Make To Your Webstore Pages
At this point on your SEO for dropshipping journey, you should have built a list of keywords you are trying to rank for and have a web page created with quality content optimized for each keyword.
You don’t have to rank for every keyword you collected during your research phase in one sitting. Take your time, start with one keyword, build a webpage for that keyword, and create the keyword-optimized content.
Once you have a web page created with lots of text optimized for your keyword as well as relevant images and/or videos, then it’s time to make some on-site adjustments that will make your page more favorable to rank well on Google’s search engines results page.
Meta Title and Meta Description
Your meta title and meta description are what shows up for your store’s web page on the Google search engine results page.
What is written in the meta title and description is extremely important because that’s what users see on Google and how the searcher ultimately decides what page they are going to click on after typing in a keyword.
Google’s algorithm considers click-through rate to be a very important metric once your web page does get ranked top 10 of a Google search result. Without a strong click-through rate, your page will quickly fall in rank.
You want your meta tag and description to be informational but also try and have a hook that will make the reader want to click for more. Build up curiosity in the meta-description with the answers located only after the user clicks on your link. What also works well is if you have some sort of statement that creates urgency or scarcity such as “sale for a limited time only” or “only a few more in stock”. Using humor or ambiguity are also ways to get a user to click-through but ultimately what’s most important is that you are truthful and informative in your title and description.
Google search the keyword you are trying to rank for and see what the web pages already ranked on the first page of Google for that keyword have as their meta title and descriptions. Then try to write something better for your page meta title and description.
Include the keyword you are trying to rank for in the meta title and the meta description but try not to repeat the same word more than once. For example, try not to have the word “leather” written twice in the meta title.
Keep your meta title less than 60 characters and your meta description less than 160 characters. No need to max out your words to reach the top character limit allotted. Often less is more for meta titles and descriptions. Keep in mind that a lot of the people who will come across your meta title and meta description will be on their phone so you want everything to look clean and effective on a mobile browser.
You also will want to have your keyword within the web pages permalink.
For example, if my web store URL is “www.cameragear.com” I would want the keyword I am trying to rank for in the permalink after my main URL such as “www.cameragear.com/leather-camera-strap”
Usually, web page content is formatted using different headings ranging from Heading 1 down to Heading 6. You are going to want to have your keyword listed within the heading 1.
If you’re trying to rank a product page then heading 1 will almost always be the name of the product you are selling. If you’re ranking a blog post then your heading 1 will usually be the long-tail keyword you are trying to rank for. It’s okay to add more words to heading 1 but make sure the keyword is still located within the heading 1.
Inbound And Outbound Links
As I mentioned earlier in this guide, the entire internet or worldwide web is built on web page hyperlinks. Google favors web pages that contain a healthy amount of inbound and outbound links.
Outbound links are links on your web page that lead to other web pages on the internet that are not contained within your website structure. The links that I put in this blog post to places like Upwork and Moz are examples of outbound links.
Not having any outbound links is not the end of the world and too many outbound links or broken outbound links could penalize your web page. If you’re trying to rank a product page you either want to have no outbound links or keep them to a minimum. If the web page you are trying to rank is a blog post it’s favorable to have some relevant outbound links. Only use outbound links if you truly believe the link you are putting on your page will add value to the user. On some of your web pages, it may also be a good idea to have outbound links to your social media profiles.
Image Alternative Text
Image alternative text, which can also be called various other names such as alt text, alt tags, and alt descriptions, is the text that you can add to your images that help with both SEO and reading receptiveness.
If a user is visually impaired, they will often have a screen reader to help read what’s on a web page. When the screen reader comes to an image they will read what was imputed in the alt text. Therefore you want to write in the alt text what the image is or what the image helps explain. You want your alt text to be as precise as possible.
Alt text will also help Google’s spiders better understand how a particular image relates to the page it’s on. With the right alt text, your image can rank in the Google image search which is a very good way to drive google traffic.
Try to fit your keyword into relevant alt text but you don’t want to stuff or spam your keyword into the text or else your site could be penalized. Just be as descriptive as possible about what the image portrays and write the text as if someone could not see the photo but only the text about the photo.
You’re also going to want to change the title name of your image. Usually, when you save a photo you download it’s a crazy name like “leather-791880_1280.jpg”. You will want to change the title name to a text that describes what the photo is. The image title can be the same or a little different than your image alt text.
The best way to get your images ranked on Google is by having unique, exclusive photos on your webpage. Consider taking your own custom photos, buying exclusive rights to photos, or hiring a designer on a website like Fiverr to design images for you.
After you make these simple adjustments you will have fully optimized SEO web pages ranking for keywords relevant to your business. You will have strong hooks in your meta title and description that will entice users to click for more. When the searchers do click through to your website they will stay there due to all the stimulating and information-rich content. The next step to build your backlink profile.
Backlink Building Tactics And Strategies
Backlinks are links to your web page that are posted on someone else’s website. Every outbound link that you post on your page is a backlink to that website. The number of backlinks that you have pointing to your web page is one of the most important ranking factors in Google’s algorithm.
The more relevant the website that posts a backlink to your page, the more authority Google gives to that particular backlink. Since you are SEO for dropshipping, you will want backlinks from shopping related websites, blogs, and media channels that your potential customers read. It will also be effective to get your web page backlinks from relevant niche related websites.
Furthermore, backlinks to your website with high social shares carry more weight than those that don’t. If a blog writes a post that backlinks to a page on your website and that post gets a bunch of social media shares then Google will regard that backlink as high authority.
The best way to begin building a backlink profile for your website is by creating social media accounts for your business and linking your web page in the bio of those social profiles.
The best social media websites to start with are Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, and Youtube. Create business accounts on these websites, then add the link of the webpage you are trying to rank in the profile bio. Once your business social media accounts are created, begin posting content regularly on these accounts.
Don’t just make social posts selling your products. Instead, post emotionally stimulating content that adds value to the viewer. Every once in a while you should mention that you sell great products, but the point of social media for your business is to entertain and add value to your potential customers for free.
You can also use social media to share the blog posts you are writing in your online store. Soon you will start to build a social following and people will begin sharing all the content you post and backlinking to your site.
Another way to get quality backlinks is to try and get local news media to write about your online store in their business or community section. Send the reporter an email saying that you are a local online business start-up and you want local customers to know what your business is all about.
You can even donate a portion of sales to a charity in your local community and use the online newspapers and other local media to help spread the word of a great cause.
As you keep satisfying customers and posting great content on your blog and social media channels, more and more websites on the internet will start linking to and sharing your webpages.
Keep your business posts authentic and have integrity. Don’t trade backlinks with other websites nor buy backlinks. If Google finds out you are doing these black-hat backlink tactics then your site will be penalized. If you post and share value-add content regularly the backlinks will come.
Once you have all these SEO for dropshipping tactics in place, it’s time to add your webpage to Google Search Console. Adding your website to Google Search Console lets Google know it’s time to crawl and index your website. Before you know it you will be generating loads of free traffic coming from Google search and converting into purchases on your web store.
How to Check Your Webstore For SEO Errors
There are tools that you can subscribe to on the internet that will scan your web pages for SEO problems. Two of the best tools out there for this are:
Enter your domain into the site audit tool, let the software find the SEO errors on your site, and then make the changes accordingly.
Conclusion On SEO For Dropshipping
Implementing SEO into your dropshipping business is an extremely effective way to drive free traffic to your web store from Google.
To Recap, SEO stands for search engine optimization. The goal of SEO for dropshipping is to get your online store and blog pages ranked on the first page of Google for relevant keywords to your business products and business niche.
Google’s search engine ranking algorithm uses hundreds of variables to determine webpage rankings but the most important factors are:
- On-Site SEO (also known as technical SEO)
- Quality of Web Page Content
- Number and quality of backlinks to your web page
The first step in SEO for dropshipping is determining what keywords you want to rank for. You primarily want to rank for long-tail keywords that show a searcher’s intent to buy, solve a problem, answer a question, or learn something.
After you have a keyword you want to rank for, create quality content with images, videos, and lots of text that emotionally stimulates and adds value to your audience but is also keyword optimized.
Next, you want to create a webpage with your keyword within the permalink. Write a compelling meta title and description that will hook the reader into wanting to click through to your web page. Make sure your keyword is optimized within your heading 1 and your images have proper titles and alt text. Add in any necessary inbound and outbound links and then begin building your backlink profile.
The best way to start building your backlinks is to create social media profiles and add your web page link in the social profile bios. Start posting and sharing stimulating and valuable content regularly and build a following. You can also try to get your online store pages featured in local news media and other relevant media channels within your dropship business niche.
There are SEO site audit tools online that you can use to spot out SEO errors on your website. Make the adjustments that these SEO audit tools recommend.
Once everything is in place you will want to submit your URL to Google Search Console.
SEO takes time but if you implement what is taught in this SEO for dropshipping guide then within a few months your pages could be ranking on the first page of Google and driving free qualified traffic that highly converts on your website for free.
I hope this guide helps.
Please write below any questions, comments, and/or concerns you have regarding SEO for dropshipping.