User-generated content (UGC) is content created by consumers who review or comment on a brand or its products and services. It can include reviews, photos, blog posts, tweets, or any kind of social media content.
UGC can be produced at the request of a brand or independently by product users. When user-generated content is produced independently – such as the buyer of a new Bugatti suitcase giving it a fantastic review on Instagram – it’s incredibly powerful. That’s because other potential customers take their words seriously. After all, any brand can say their product is the best. But when shoppers say it over and over, it’s highly trusted.
User-generated content and SEO
User-generated content can help you increase your WooCommerce store sales as it’s more trustworthy than branded content. It also offers social proof.
In addition, it can juice up your SEO efforts! You probably already know that search engines rank websites on how relevant the content is, and how useful it is to a visitor. But did you know that more than 25 percent of the search results for the 20 largest brands in the world are linked to user-generated content! This figure demonstrates that consistently integrating user-generated content into your brand’s SEO strategy can boost your website’s ranking and social proof your eCommerce store.
How user-generated content helps your store’s SEO
Before we explore what types of UGC work best for WooCommerce SEO, let’s explain why user-generated content works to attract potential customers.
Many shoppers search online for products via a search engine. Many times, they are looking for content that will give them more information about the product they want. They’re also looking for content from people who’ve already bought the product to confirm that what they want to buy is a good choice and something other buyer’s rate highly.
When a shopper finds positive user-generated content, they view it as trustworthy and feel confident about making the purchase. Because search engines favour content that is new and relevant, the regular creation and posting of UGC will improve your search engine page results, as well as your brand’s reputation.
Next, when a potential customer arrives at your website and reads or watches positive user-generated content, the chances that you’ll make a sale improve greatly. The power of UGC is underlined in a Bright Local survey, which reveals that 91 percent of 18 to 34 year olds trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, and 93 percent of all consumers say that online reviews influence their purchase decisions.
Types of user-generated content that can improve SEO
Now that you understand the benefits of user-generated content, let’s take a look at some examples that can really drive results.
1. Blog posts
The great thing about WooCommerce is that it’s built on WordPress, a content management system, so it comes with a blog on day one. Post regularly about products and customer reviews on your website. This way you’ll attract a steady flow of traffic to your eCommerce platform. And as we’ve mentioned, customers are searching for products and reviews via search engines. So regularly publishing blog posts is a fundamental part of search engine optimization and traffic growth.
2. Product reviews
Add a plugin that allows shoppers to leave reviews. Most reviews are positive and will attract organic traffic and customers looking for trustworthy content. Keep in mind that you may get some negative reviews, and if you do you need to deal with them quickly and offer the reviewer something extra to make up for any issue they’ve experienced.
3. User-generated product videos
In addition to written content and images, videos will attract shoppers to your website and therefore boost your SEO. Ask shoppers to submit videos featuring products they purchased from your store. You can also work with Instagram, TikTok, or Youtube influencers to grow your brand. YouTube is a Google company, and YouTube videos appear high up in search results, so videos featuring your products could do well on that platform.
If you’re struggling to connect with influencers, this post by influencer Neal Schaffer lists some of the best platforms where brands and influencers can connect. One such platform is Brybe, where brands and influencers can connect directly and create a packaged solution to suit brand needs. As YouTube videos appear in Google search results, there’ll be a good chance that the video with your product will appear in the search results.
4. Social media content
Sharing on social media has a really positive impact on SEO, but some WooCommerce store owners aren’t clear how this works, or don’t share in a way that benefits SEO. You need a social media strategy as part of your overall marketing strategy, and this must focus on delivering value and engagement. It’s important not to simply be dropping links on social media channels. Instead, produce really interesting and valuable content and engage with your followers. This way, followers will find your links inviting and will head to your eCommerce store to discover more.
In addition, many consumers share their experiences with products and brands on social media. You can either be proactive and set up an incentive program on, for example, Instagram, where you reward people for sharing cool photos of themselves using your products, or do a search for posts mentioning your brand in a positive context. Showcase them on your site in a dedicated section.
If you’re new to all this and wondering where to begin, a great way to gain new brand mentions is to run a hashtag campaign on any social media channel your customers are using. Ideally, it should involve a contest because incentives work well in engaging users online. Here’s an idea – launch a campaign asking costumes to submit content connected to your brand. Say you sell cosmetics, consider asking a question like: “What is your favorite cosmetic from our collection, and which benefits do you like best?”.
5. Add your Google Maps listing
Do you have a physical location as well in addition to an online store? Be sure to get a Google Maps listing. Your customers will thank you for it, and it’ll help SEO.
One final point – be aware of stretching yourself too thinly on social media by trying to be on all platforms. Unless you have a dedicated social media team, this isn’t possible, and you’ll end up doing social media badly. Instead, choose two platforms where your potential customers hang out and focus on those platforms only.
By carefully creating valuable content, you’ll not only significantly enhance your search engine optimization, you’ll also be social proofing your brand and growing a loyal following of customers!