Not every business owner is a born organizer. Sure there are some ecommerce moguls in the world who sort grains of sand as a hobby, but they are few and far between (we think). Sorting, organizing, and categorizing your products can be a tedious and downright tiresome chore. But it is critical.
If you are a business with inventory, you know all about product tags. Online retailers across the world roll their eyes in unison at its mention. The phrase conjures memories of endless clicking, painstakingly categorizing and cataloguing their array of products into precisely the right boxes, just to make everything findable.
It’s yet another mundane aspect of online retail that we tend to take for granted. But you should ask yourself, “what do product tags actually do for me?” The answer is: more than you think. We are here to explain.
So what are product tags?
Hashtags might be the novel colloquialism of the century. Everyone is familiar with the concept of tags as a social media phenomenon: short phrases or words that make end user’s posts visible in various search categories.
Product tags have an equivalent function in the world of online retail. They are language-based keyword descriptors used to organize and categorize your inventory, as well as make it visible in a customer search. Product tags can range from the very broad to the ultra-specific. They might make a blanket statement about what the product is, e.g. “dress”, or provide details including the individual description or name of the unique item, e.g. “Penelope black lace peplum dress,” etc.
The kinds of product tags you use will depend on the kind and volume of inventory in your company’s possession. If you have a smaller inventory you might even be tempted to stick to only specific descriptors. But it is always in your best interest to include a wide array of product tags, not just for your customers, but also for yourself. We’ll explain why in the next section.
Why bother with product tags?
We cannot stress this enough: ecommerce would be chaos without product tags. They enable organization which would not be possible, or at least would be very complicated, without them. They help drive marketing and development by optimizing branding and sales tracking. And product tags allow you to make your store not only easily navigable by your active customers, but also visible to the rest of the internet. Product tags are a crucial factor in helping your ecommerce business stand out in the crowd: both to consumers, and to search engines.
Still not convinced? Let’s break some of these down.
Product tags enable internal organization for your customers. Can you imagine what online shopping would be like if you weren’t able to sort boots from skirts, cat products from dog products, or personal care from house cleaning products? Product tags can boost customer experience by making your online store easy to navigate and optimally searchable.
Product tags provide an opportunity for marketing and development. Tags and descriptions are another place online retailers can push their brand, connect customers to social media, or entice customers with interesting product stories or letters from the founder.
Finally, product tags help to organize your inventory so that search engines can make sense of your site. Using product tags as keywords on your product pages allows Google and other search engines to read your descriptions and include your site and products in search results.
A quick note on SEO.
The goal of product tagging and keyword-based description is Search Engine Optimization. Effective SEO helps your website get indexed and understood by search engines so that your products and pages can be found by potential customers easily.
How product tags help search engine optimization.
Search engines “rank” web pages based on a number of criteria including relevance of content to the search term, and the quality of backlinks indicating the page. A page with search optimized content is more likely to appear higher in the list of search results, and therefore more likely to be clicked by a consumer. Matching your store content to tags to searches made by potential customers can help how your product pages rank in search results.
And tag SEO can be tricky. The precise language in a search tends to differ from person to person, and spelling errors are common. Product tags that match how customers search will perform better — unconventional grammar and all. Research can help you figure out exactly what to say. Products such as Google AdWords, SemRush, and others can help you identify the most common keywords used in searches relating to your inventory. And matching your content to these results is money in the bank.
And SEO doesn’t just stop at page content. Your product page permalinks can also play a role in how your site ranks. Creating custom URLs and applying product taxonomy to your product page links can help your store be even more findable and navigable.
How product tags help Gladly help you.
Gladly’s mission is radically personal customer service. We strive to make the consumer experience unique and enjoyable — and this includes customer questions and communication. Your shoppers want to be seen as a whole person, and not just a ticket. And this means receiving personable, timely help when they reach out for it.
When Gladly customer service heroes are on the line with one of your shoppers, it’s sometimes necessary to investigate the product or site which is the source of their question. And having comprehensive SEO and product tags set up on your website means that a CS agent can find the product and help out the caller in no time. So product tags boosts your customer experience across the board, from first purchase to their first customer support call.
Gladly API integrates with all the major ecommerce platforms, including Shopify, Magento, and WooCommerce, and makes integrating your product SEO and customer service a breeze. To see how Gladly can work for you, sign up for a free demo today.