Many brand websites have customer support portals that cover common questions they get from their customers about the products, shipping, returns, etc. In this article, we’ll cover how to take a customer support portal and optimize it for SEO so that customers who are Googling their questions can easily find their answers.
First, we’ll talk about the advantages and benefits of a search-optimized customer support portal and then explain how to structure and create your own SEO-friendly customer support portal.
3 key benefits of a search-optimized customer support portal
1. Own your brand information and conversation
It’s in every company’s best interest to own the top-searched information on your brand, products, and policies.
Case in point: It’s less ideal when another site ranks higher for answers to customer questions about your brand or products. In this example about Lululemon’s return policy, another website owns one of the answers:
2. Make it easier for customers to get answers to their questions
Having your brand’s answers ranked in Google featured snippets also provides a pleasant user experience for your customers by making it easy to find the answers to their questions using a search engine they already use in day-to-day life. Even if your answers don’t show in featured snippets, your brand’s answer to their question will still rank in results and allow the user to easily click through to the answer on your website.
In this example, Nike.com’s return policy isn’t a featured snippet, but it’s the top organic result which allows the user to easily click through and get the information they need:
3. Ease the workload on your existing customer support team
SEO can help with customer care by providing quick answers to customers who search Google with customer support questions. This means fewer tickets and less demand on your customer service team.
How to optimize your customer support portal for SEO
Research what questions people are asking about your brand
A keyword research tool (such as Semrush keyword magic or enterprise tracking tools like Conductor or BrightEdge) will be able to tell you what searches are being performed that also include your brand name. This will clue you into what questions people are typing into Google or what people are trying to find out about your brand.
In lieu of having access to a tool like this or access to an agency or SEO professional who can support you in this, try these do-it-yourself tactics to learn more:
- Ask your customer support team to provide you with the most common questions they get and start there.
- Check to see what Google autocompletes show up when you start to type your brand name in a Google search (type your brand name and see what suggestions come up).
- Check the related searches at the very bottom of the Google results page.
Follow SEO requirements for customer support questions to rank on Google
If you want your customer support questions to rank on Google, here are the requirements:
- A unique URL per question/policy.
- For example, www.brand.com/return-policy versus a dropdown or accordion on a single page.
- The URL contains the policy or question (like /return-policy).
- The meta title tag includes the question or policy + brand name.
- The heading includes the question or policy (and optionally the brand name again).
- For example, your Return Policy page may contain several different questions about the return policy, so the title and heading could say “Lululemon’s Return Policy.”
- Phrase all questions as a subheading with a direct answer (so that Google can use them in a featured snippet).
- For example: Can you return a Lululemon product without a receipt? You can return a Lululemon product without a receipt if….
Learn common search behaviors for customer service questions
According to Semrush’s Keyword Magic tool, here are some of the most common questions customers ask outside of general shipping and returns questions (can apply to both B2C and B2B).: Use these common search patterns on your relevant customer support pages. For example, instead of titling a pricing page “Cost of XYZ,” title it as “[Your Product] Pricing,” since that matches with the common search behavior listed below.
- [brand/product/app/service] price
- [brand/product/app/service] pricing
- how much is [brand/product/app/service]
- how much does [brand/product/app] cost
- [brand] [plan name] vs [plan name]
- [brand] reviews
Fit and sizing information
Top queries around this include are:
- [brand] sizing
- [brand] sizing chart
- [brand] [product] sizing
- [brand] sizing guide
- how to wash [brand] [product name]
- how to clean [brand] [product name]
Above all else, being in touch with your customer base will help you provide the best answers and support, and by following the SEO requirements we listed above, you’ll be able to better support your customers through SEO.
Add anew SEO-friendly blogsection that supportssupport customer experience
Write eEducational content
Aside from answering questions about returns, shipping, etc, there is a lot of SEO opportunity in adding educational content around your products. For example, a cowboy boot direct-to-consumer brand may offer a how-to article on “how to fit cowboy boots” or “how to clean cowboy boots.”
Read more: Quick Wins for D2C Ecommerce SEO
Share cCoupon code information
For ecommerce brands, a common search behavior is people searching for coupon codes. While the many coupon code sites out there will likely continue to rank, many brands do still want to own at least a piece of the search market share.
To rank for “[brand] coupon codes,” create a dedicated Coupon Codes page and follow the same SEO requirements above. Even if you don’t offer regular coupon codes, you can still create a page that tells customers what they can expect with coupon codes. For example “we only offer coupon codes twice a year during our anniversary sale and Black Friday” or “our only coupon code discount is the 15% off we offer when you sign up to receive emails and texts.”