Using Ecommerce Keyword Research For Online Retail Seo

e-commerce keyword research is important

Studies indicate that e-commerce sales accounted for 14% of all retail purchases in 2022. This number is expected to continue rising and will hit 22% by 2024. This means that e-commerce has become a big business that every retailer should understand and leverage on.

One of the key steps for a successful e-commerce strategy is keyword research. This is what gives direction on what to optimize for. It shows the phrases and terms customers use to search for products and services. This makes it easy to determine keywords to optimize for. In this article, we will guide you on how to conduct keyword research for an e-commerce store.

Steps For Effective E-commerce Strategy

Keyword research is key for any SEO strategy. Here are the steps to follow for an effective keyword research:

Determine Your Current Position

If you already have an ecommerce site, you should start by determining if you rank for any keywords. You can use top keyword research tools like Google Search Console, Ahref, Semrush, and Ubefrsuggest to see your site’s performance. 

Google search console can show you the keywords your site is already ranking for. Simply click on the performance report. Consider if there are keywords that you can leverage on to bring more traffic.

If you are starting an e-commerce store, you should research your niche and topic to see if there are underserved needs in the market that you can exploit to your benefit. This can also give you a unique angle or an underserved niche to focus on.

Consider The Search Intent

You do not want a situation where your site will be ranking for the wrong keywords, as this will attract the wrong audience. This is why you should pay attention to different types of keywords. These are:

Informational Keywords

As the name suggests, people using informational keywords are seeking general information. These keywords are usually for the blog page and FAQ section. People use these keywords in the early stages of making a buying decision. The keywords answer questions on:

  • How to
  • What to
  • Where to 

While these keywords don’t affect the buying decision, you can use them to position yourself as an authority on the subject. By optimizing these keywords, you can have your site rank on the featured snippet.

People using these keywords search for a particular site, geographical location, or brand. For instance, someone searching for the Ahrefs site may do a search on Google instead of typing the url. These keywords are the least used for e-commerce sites. But if you are a marketer, ranking for them can still benefit your brand.

Commercial Keywords

Commercial keywords are used by people searching for information before making the final buying decision. People using these keywords are about to decide but are not convinced by a product. They are looking for details such as features, prices and the best deals before buying.

Some of the keywords commonly used  for this search intent are:

  • Best
  • Review
  • Versus
  • Under $
  • For

To target these keywords, you should prove to your customers that your products are better than their competitors. You can use the keywords for comparison guides, product reviews, listicles, and more.

 Transactional Keywords

The transactional intent indicates that the searcher is highly likely to purchase. They use words such as “for sale, price, discount, where to buy,” etc. These are the keywords for landing pages and other pages where you want the user to make an immediate buying decision.

Transactional keywords are great for ecommerce

Brainstorm Keyword Ideas

You can figure out the keywords to target by asking yourself several questions. These are:

  • What is it that people are searching for 
  • Who is searching for the products
  • How are they searching for the products? What terms do they use? Do they use mobile devices? 
  • What is the reason behind the search?
  • Where are my potential customers located? Is it locally, nationally, or internationally?

You can create a spreadsheet where you can list the answers. These should give you an idea of the search intent and the topics to cover.

Perform Keyword Research Research

In an ideal situation, you want to target sites with a high search volume and low competition. A high search volume is the number of people searching for the keywords and an indicator of the commercial viability of a keyword. But practically, keywords with a high search volume are highly competitive, as many high authority sites target them. Therefore, you will want to balance the search volume and the keyword difficulty.

When doing keyword research, go for phrases with a high user intent. There are two approaches you can use to do keyword research: your own research and competitor analysis. 

Doing Your Own Research

If you already have an e-commerce site, you can do a gap analysis to determine which keywords you are already ranking for. Consider also if there are additional opportunities. When searching keywords for your e-commerce store, you can use tools such as:

  • Google Autocomplete
  • Related searches
  • People also ask
  • Amazon search bar

Once you get the seed keywords you want to focus on, you can research them using the metrics we discussed earlier. Pay special attention to long-tail keywords.

Performing Competitor Analysis

You can also spy on your competitors to know the keywords they are ranking for. This will show you how hard or easy it is to rank for those keywords and how much work you need to do to outrank those sites. Remember that if you are not ranking on the first page of the SERPs, you will lose important traffic and struggle to convert.

Some of the factors to check when doing competitor analysis are:

  • The keywords your competitors are ranking for
  • Topics they cover on their sites, their quality, and whether there is something they are missing.
  • The number of backlinks they have
  • Source of their backlinks
Keyword research can increase traffic to your site


Performing keyword research for an eCommerce store can be hard and time-consuming. However, with a bit of effort and dedication, the results can be satisfying. This will help to increase traffic to your site and improve conversion. By following this guide, you will see the results you need for your site.

Benjamin is a writer with over ten years of experience in the content writing field. He holds a Bachelor's degree in  Journalism from Strathmore University. He writes on various niches such as product reviews, self-improvement, and making mone online. You can find him curled on his couch with a self-improvement book when he is not blogging.