6 free ways to create new product categories to 2x revenue

Here are a few bullet points about me, before we get to the good stuff:

  • 8+ years doing SEO
  • 6+ years doing eCommerce SEO
  • Worked for 2 of the top agencies in the UK, The SEO Works and most recently, Blink SEO as an SEO Analyst
  • I now work independently with clients, mainly online store owners on Shopify
  • My normal return for clients is a 100% organic revenue increase
  • Born and bred in Sheffield, South Yorkshire
  • I recently became a Dad so I will do pretty much anything for extra sleep

What is this post about?

The blog post title is ‘6 FREE ways to create new product categories to 2x revenue.’

By that I mean, using free tools and data to discover opportunities to create new category pages filled with products on your site.

Not just any product category pages, ones that will convert.

Why am I talking about creating new category pages?

It’s one of the fastest, highest ROI ways to drive revenue to a new or established store.

As a general rule, the higher the number of SKUs (individual products) your store has, the more fruitful these methods will be.

Again, so why am I concentrating on new category pages for an online store?

Reason 1. My previous agency Blink SEO ran a study which found out category pages account for around 60% of revenue. Product pages were around 35% and blogs around 5% - the rest varied.

Reason 2. I’ve seen it work and I’ve added screenshots of results in the next page.

Reason 3. It’s time efficient. Link building works but it can take time. Writing new copy works but it can take time. Technical fixes work but they can take time.

You can have a new product category page up and running in a very short period of time, and you can start seeing Search Console data for it within days.

Screenshots of Results from campaigns involving new category pages

METHOD #1 REVIEWING PRODUCT ATTRIBUTES

What do I mean by this?

So, onto the methods. Product attributes are characterstics of a product which differentiates it from another one.

Examples of these would be size (large), colour (blue), shape (round), brand (nike), value (under £20).

Categories are created from having multiple products with the same attributes (A shoe shop with 3 pairs of black trainers on sale for example).

In our case we are looking for products with attributes which we haven’t assigned a category to yet.

How do you do it?

Depending on how well optimised your site is already, these product attributes may be in the meta title, description, h1 tags or in the URL structure. We’re going to use ChatGPT for this and the URL structure to keep it simple.

First Step:

We need your product URLs. These can be found in your sitemap, and depending which platform you’re using it’s normally at:

https://examplewebsite.com/sitemap.xml

You may have a dedicated product sitemap but again it depends on the technical set up of the platform.

With your list of product URLs (the cleaner the better as ChatGPT does have a character limit) paste these in with the prompt:

“Give me suggestions for new product categories with the same attribute in 3+ products.” I’ve just done this for a website that sells beds and got the following response:

You can keep prompting it to give you more suggestions if needed and with the character limit you may need to paste in different product URLs to get a better response.

But - it definitely will atleast give you inspiration for a new category page.

Remember - only create a new category page from the suggestions if an existing one with the same intent doesn’t exist.

We don’t want cannibalisation on the site.

And try and make sure there are atleast 3+ products in each category for sufficient product coverage.

Onto method 2...

METHOD #2 Analysing the serps

What do i mean by this?

The SERPs means the Search Engine Results pages.

This method is pretty straightforward, but can result in lots of suggestions.

Google aims to show results in the SERPs which are going to be helpful for the user - so generally you can trust what it’s showing.

How do you do it?

Type in an existing category name and before pressing enter look at what attributes Google suggests. Voila, here are new suggestions for subcategories if relevant.

Example for black trainers:

Do you have 3+ products which come under any of these queries? (women’s black trainers, size 5 black trainers etc)

How do you do it?

Also check out the ‘Related searches’ section at the bottom of the page, these attributes may differ from the suggestions.

Example for black trainers:

Do you have 3+ products which come under any of these queries ready for a new category?

TIP - Try searching [product] + for

Also, when doing this research, look for results of poor quality.

Say you searched for ‘size 10 black trainers’ in Google and a result came up in the top 10 which was irrelevant or had very low product coverage, then this is a real opportunity.

If a result in the top 10 has only 2 products or is showing size 9 shoes or just a generic black trainers page - you’re onto a real winner.

METHOD #3 COMPETITIVE RESEARCH

What do i mean by this?

Simply put, reviewing competitor’s websites for inspiration! Which categories does your competitor have that you don’t?

Which product attributes does your competitor mention that you don’t?

As a business owner you will know some of your competitors. To find others which you may not have considered, search on Google for your category keywords.

If you were the shoe store example (that I keep rambling on about, sorry), you’d maybe search size 10 black trainers, and use the top 10 results for inspiration.

How do you do it?

Using that example, I’ve searched for ‘size 10 black trainers and landed on Shoezone’s category page: https://www.shoezone.com/Mens/Trainers/Black

The main place I want to look next for opportunities is the faceted navigation or the filtering system.

Review the faceted navigation, click the dropdowns/open up any filters and start to build out categories that you also have product coverage for, but don’t have a category page as of yet.

Added bonus if you notice any that are ‘dynamic’ category pages on your competitor sites.

These are pages which have the same headings and copy as the primary categories and haven’t been created by the website owners.

For example I selected the ‘Wider Fitting’ filter on Shoezone but it still says ‘Men’s Black Trainers’ as the heading.

If you created a ‘Wider Fitting Men’s Black Trainers’ category - you’d be more relevant.

METHOD #4 Analyse google search console

What do I mean by this?

Google Search Console is a free tool which provides search query data for your website.

You can see queries which your product/category pages are getting impressions and clicks for and it can drive your entire content strategy.

It’s a tool I use everyday without fail.

We’re looking for ‘striking distance’ keywords in this method.

How do you do it?

Open up your site in GSC - and look for search queries with low CTR (Click-through rates) - high impressions but low clicks. Filter down.

I’d concentrate on your category + product URLs here. Look for queries which refer to *another* category which doesn’t exist with a high no. of impressions - these are good opportunities. Especially queries with ‘for’ in.

METHOD #5 Analyse Google Trends

What do i mean by this?

Google Trends is a tool which provides, you guessed it, search data for trending queries.

It shows interest over time for different topics and allows you to get a rough view of which product categories are trending or were trending in the past.

How do you do it?

Enter your primary keywords for your main categories in the ‘search term’ box and hit enter.

Then, scroll down to the ‘related topics’ and ‘related queries’ section - this can be a goldmine.

You can filter for either ‘rising’ or ‘top’ topics and queries, and this can really give you some great keyphrases with product attributes for new category pages.

You’d have never guessed it, but I’m using black trainers as an example again:

METHOD #6 REVIEW PRODUCT DESCRIPTION COPY

What do I mean by this?

Depending on how much work has gone into your ecommerce site so far, you should have some product copy to analyse.

This method involves reviewing this copy (obviously the more the better) to find common product attributes/differentiators.

How do you do it?

You can either do this manually - looking for common sizes, colours, brands, materials, type of customer etc (this could take a while if you have a high number of SKUs)...

OR

You could use the internal site search on your store

OR

You could use site: search operator on Google, which would look like the below

I’d have to use paid search tools to check these out for an eCommerce store in terms of search volume, relevancy and intent, but using the free methods above here are a few examples for this mythical ‘black shoe’ store that I’ve been mentioning:

wide fit black trainers

size 12 black trainers

leather black trainers

black trainers for women

black trainers for men

new balance black trainers

black trainers for kids

black trainers for school

black trainers for nurses

size 5 black trainers

black trainers for sale

flat black trainers

low black trainers

black trainers under £20

black trainers under £50

Thanks for reading. Get in touch if you have any questions/thoughts and may the algorithm be forever in your favour.

Joe

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