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How do I optimize an e-commerce site without rich content?

How do I optimize an e-commerce site without rich content? - answered by Matt Cutts

Matt's answer:

CUTTS: A difficult question from Paddy Moogan in the UK: “Hi, Matt, what are your opinions on optimizing an Ecommerce website where the main pages or products may not necessarily be rich in content?” That’s a tough question, right? Essentially, you’re saying here’s a place where you can buy products and there’s not a lot of content or maybe the content is duplicated from a bunch of places. So, my short answer is, you know, put on your user hat. If you typed in a product and you get a ton of places to buy things and there’s no real information on that page and there’s no real value added and all you get is places to buy, then you get pretty annoyed. In fact, whenever we ask our users, you know, what’s the top issue for you these days, it’s less about true web spam like cloaking or hidden text or stuff like that and more about a search quality issue of, “Oh, I don’t like how many commercial results I see,” or, you know, “I get too many products,” or “Too many comparison shopping sites,” or things like that. So that’s a sentiment that we heard a lot. And what you should be asking yourself is, you know, “Do I want to take that step? Do I want to make the Ecommerce site if I don’t have a lot of original content or value add or if I have a lot of duplicate content or if it’s an affiliate feed, then there’s really not much else I’m adding to it. And so I’d–ask yourself, do you really want to jump into that and start optimizing that, or do you want to look for something a little more original or something more compelling, you know, some other hook that you can get a lot of visitors for? And so my advice is, you know, if possible, think about how you can move more towards that high value add, unique sort of site, not just the site that somebody might view as cookie cutter or that they might get annoyed by it if they land and find, you know, a page that looks just like 500 other pages that they’ve just seen on the web. So those are sort of the things to think about.

by Matt Cutts - Google's Head of Search Quality Team


Original video: