3 minutes

The Importance of Site Architecture for Your eCommerce Site

Site architecture is the organization and hierarchy of content on your site. For DTC brands, this means how you organize your navigation, user experience and sitemap to display products, collections and blogs. Websites that have an optimized site architecture tend to convert more visitors and drive a better ROI. In this article we’ll explore why site architecture is important for your eCommerce brand and provide some tips on how to knock your site structure out of the park.

Top Reasons Site Architecture Matters For Your eCommerce Site

  1. User Experience
  2. Search Engine Optimization

Seamless User Experience

We want the shopping experience on our sites to be foolproof. This means ensuring users do not have to dig deep in your site just to find what they are looking for. In order to execute a great site architecture a merchandising strategy needs to be in place to determine which collections or categories are most important toward your brand’s revenue, and how that should be executed in the design and development of your website. We call this information architecture, or how your brand is going to display content, products and/or information to your visitors. It’s important to nail your taxonomy strategy, or how you’ll assign products into specific collections.

UX Best Practices for Site Architecture

  1. Utilize breadcrumbs to help visitors shop around without getting lost.
  2. Organize your site’s navigation (especially for mobile) with important collections pages and links.
  3. Leverage data and analytics to determine which content should be designed above the fold to help push visitors down the sales funnel.
  4. Think about SEO best practices when deciding upon nomenclatures, taxonomy, designs and UX.
  5. Implement conversion tactics (based off data) in your UX and design to create shopping experiences that turn into sales and revenue.

SEO Benefits of Superior Site Architecture

You need to have good site architecture in order for Google and other search engines to understand how your pages relate to one another and the importance of each page. A robust, well-thought-out site structure will help provide internal linking opportunities (the glue to your SEO), organize topics into SEO-friendly URL structures and help search engine crawlers understand page authority between blogs and product/collections pages.

SEO Best Practices for Site Architecture

  • Create HTML and .xml sitemaps to provide visitors and search engines with an organized list of pages on your site.
  • Enhance internal linking between collections pages, product pages and blogs for related content.
  • Avoid internal linking between collections or product pages that do not relate to one another to avoid confusing search engines.
  • Use structured data like breadcrumb schema to improve rankings.
  • Optimize related products/collections pages and blog pages with similar keywords to help search engines understand term-frequency inverse-document frequency (TF*IDF) and content relevance.
  • Set canonical tags to page variations to avoid duplicate content.
Crate & Barrel site architecture
Crate & Barrel optimized SEO site architecture on Kitchen category page

What Shopify Offers to Optimize Site Architecture

One easy way to fail at site architecture is creating mass amounts of visible, unoptimized category pages that have similar intent or merchandising. This, on top of withholding using breadcrumbs is a recipe for disaster (from an SEO and UX perspective). Shopify easily allows merchants to use Collections to scale the UX, while keeping things uniform and organized.

BVA Can Help With Your Site Architecture

Allow our team of experts to transform your new website’s site architecture into an immersive, interactive shopping experience. We create a ‘One-BVA’ approach between our SEO team and UX designers to build your website’s infrastructure to set your eCommerce strategy up for success. Contact us to get started on your project.