What Impacts E-commerce SEO More – Text or Images?

Graphic designer displaying an e-commerce ad on her laptop & tablet that reads Online Shopping

It’s common for online merchants to think that listing all their products on their e-commerce website is enough to drive site traffic. Unfortunately, that is far from reality. In fact, optimizing online shops for SEO purposes is more challenging than it is for a magazine site or a simple five-page company website. After all, with lots of product pages containing mostly images, e-commerce websites often find it hard to tell search engines what their site is all about.

High-Quality Images, But with Little or No Product Description

E-commerce sites that sell clothes, shoes and other fashion products like to keep their pages clean, as noticed by our SEO CT team. They often post high-quality, editorial photos to show their products at their best. They also keep the texts to a minimum to achieve a fresh, clean look for their website. While impressive product photos are important to increase user engagement, these aren’t much of a help, SEO-wise.

Search engines like Google are highly literate but they can’t read images—they can only recognize and read texts. Whenever a user inputs a set of keywords in a Google search box, Google will match the user with websites containing those keywords. So, if your e-commerce site only contains images (with little or no product description), then you miss the chance of getting search engine users to view your website and check out your items. That defeats the purpose of having an online shop, in the first place.

Neuro Design: The Visual Facet of SEO

So… How Much Text Should Your Web Pages Have?

The amount of text a page should have is always up for debate. Google’s guidelines, for instance, aren’t clear about how much on-page text is enough. It has become an industry-standard, however, to put a minimum of 300 words per web page to boost a site’s SEO efforts. It is also imperative that your content is unique, so refrain from copying product descriptions from the manufacturer’s website or other seller’s shops.

We have found that even 300 words can be considered thin content, so, we now use a minimum of 600 words per page/post. Then on our ultimate guides and cornerstone articles, we use 2,000-2,500 words.

Of course, the amount and the uniqueness of your page content are not the only things that search engines look for when crawling on your web page. The speed, mobile responsiveness, and backlinks of your website matter for search engines, too. But, by simply ensuring your e-commerce site has great aesthetics and quality content, you’re a huge step closer to making your website visible on search engines.

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Avatar for Eric Melillo

Eric Melillo

Eric Melillo is a certified HubSpot Inbound Marketing expert, Senior Brand Strategist, as well as a lover of family, friends, and life. He enjoys good health, Tae Kwon-Do and discovering the most influential marketing trends.


Avatar for Eric Melillo

Eric Melillo

Eric Melillo is a certified HubSpot Inbound Marketing expert, Senior Brand Strategist, as well as a lover of family, friends, and life. He enjoys good health, Tae Kwon-Do and discovering the most influential marketing trends.