How to optimize Shopify for search engine optimization (SEO)?

Optimizing your Shopify store for Google, Bing, and other search engines is essential in helping potential customers discover your site. Many of the principles of search engine optimization (SEO) provide a positive user experience. The easier it is to find and use your Shopify store, the more likely people will shop with you.

How to increase organic traffic to your Shopify store

The fundamentals covered in our SEO guide also apply to Shopify SEO, but there are a few tips for getting a fully search-optimized Shopify site. There are also nuances and other factors to consider when evaluating the SEO capabilities of the platform.

In this guide, we cover SEO fundamentals and technical considerations for improving the search ranking of your Shopify store to increase traffic and sales.

Here’s how to increase organic traffic to your Shopify store: SEO Guide 

  1. Shopify SEO Basics

Shopify Page Editor:

Shopify’s Content Management System (CMS) has a page editor with a simple user interface for creating landing pages, product detail pages, and blog posts.

The page editor allows basic formatting options, headers, tables, and editing in HTML. You can also upload photos and embed videos on the pages. The search engine listing preview section automatically generates a page title and meta description based on the content you enter in the page details section.

Page titles are an important ranking factor. They provide search engines with information about the content of your page, and they often appear as the title of your search result.

Meta descriptions are often what appear below the title in search results. They should summarize the page’s content for potential customers and can help improve clicks on your site.

The Shopify page editor allows you to review your titles and descriptions manually. If you don’t settle for the auto-generated ones, optimize them to include the keywords you want to rank for and attract customers browsing the search results.

Analytic:

Shopify sites are compatible with two handy free tools: Google Search Console and Google Analytics. Google Search Console helps site owners monitor and troubleshoot their site’s presence in Google search results and provides query data that directs prospects and customers to your pages. Google Analytics shows you how people got to your site and behaved once they got there. Search Console and Google Analytics are essential tools for SEO.

To connect your Shopify store to Google Search Console, you’ll need to add a code snippet to your home page. There are two things to keep in mind when verifying your Search Console account for your Shopify store: Google will only index the current theme, and only if the music is live.

googleanalytics site Technical SEO for Shopify

Setting up Google Analytics is as easy as enabling it in your Shopify site preferences, acquiring your tracking ID, and pasting it into the associated field in Shopify.

Domain, security, and speed:

You can buy a custom domain through Shopify starting at $ 11 per year, in addition to your Shopify monthly plan. Without a custom domain, your site URL will be your site name if you choose to do so. Having your custom domain is a much better branding image, conveys more professionalism, and dramatically increases your chances of ranking well in searches for your business name.

The speed and security of the site are ranking factors Google (SEO techniques), and they are associated with the user experience. Slow load times can cause customers to bounce before your page loads, which means they won’t buy from you. Shopify offers a Content Delivery Network (CDN) that can help reduce page load times no matter where in the world your customers are browsing.

Even with Shopify’s CDN, the image file size can disproportionately increase page load times. Selecting the correct format to compress your images is one way to keep file sizes under control: JPEGs will generally result in smaller file sizes than PNGs, which is more suitable when you need a background. Transparent in your image. Tools like Google PageSpeed ​​Insights can help you identify opportunities to increase site speed by suggesting different image formats and other speed optimizations.

All Shopify plans also come with an SSL certificate, which encrypts the data sent between your site and its visitors. This is important because Google gives a slight boost in the ranking of secure areas and because many browsers display a security warning when users attempt to visit a site without an SSL certificate. You can check this one on your worry list.

Shopify apps:

A significant advantage of a platform like Shopify is the app ecosystem that makes it easy to add features and tools to your site with little to no coding. There are apps to help you manage inventory, take customer support tickets, run affiliate programs, and, yes, optimize your site for search.

Shopify has dozens of SEO apps. Since eCommerce stores usually carry many product photos, image optimization is critical. 

TinyIMG SEO Image Optimizer has hundreds of five-star reviews and can help reduce your load times by compressing your images.

 SEO Image Optimizer: Auto SEO is one of Shopify’s most top-rated SEO apps (at time of publication) and offers a free plan with alt-text optimization or a paid subscription that fixes broken links as well. And automatically tags your images with JSON-LD structured data, which can help search engines make sense of the picture. This can be a handy feature because structured data is used to feed product information into image search results, which can help you guide searchers in Google image results straight to your page. Of product.

For Shopify store owners new to SEO, SEO Booster and SEO Marketing cover most SEO basics like titles, descriptions, and image alt attributes.

Many other apps can help you add product reviews to give customers more information about what you are selling, which search engines can use to display stars, and which can. Improve your click-through rates. There are also apps to convert parts of your store to Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) framework, which can quickly deliver your pages to mobile shoppers, etc.

Sitemap: Sitemap:

Sitemaps contain information about your pages and files and are used by search engines to crawl and index your site. This process allows your pages to appear in search results. Shopify automatically generates a .xml sitemap file with links to your pages, products, images, collections, and blog posts. After verifying your Google Search Console account, submit your sitemap to Google to help them find and index your pages.

  1. Technical SEO for Shopify

Search engines work by “crawling” websites, which means they crawl through a site’s code and URLs to find every page on the site. This information is then added to the search engine index to be ranked and served accordingly when someone performs a relevant search.

Technical SEO refers to optimizations that facilitate exploration and indexing aspects of research. Technical optimizations can include your site’s architecture, URL structure, and JavaScript.

Shopify allows store owners to bypass many technical aspects of launching an eCommerce site by providing pre-built themes with the Shopify framework as the backbone. However, this structure is rigid and, in some cases, does not provide an easy way to perform specific technical optimizations.

Being aware of the technical SEO challenges inherent in Shopify can help you find solutions to several issues and educate potential store owners about the trade-offs that come with building their store on Shopify.

Below are the most common technical SEO challenges faced by Shopify store owners:  

Duplicate Pages:

Collections help group products into categories, making it easier for customers to find the products they are looking for. They are also an inherent property of the Shopify framework. When you link a product page to a collection page (as most merchants are likely to), Shopify will generate a second URL for that product page. This means that you will have two URLs for the same product. The URLs you end up with will look like this:

  1. / collections / shirts-collection / products / blue-shirt
  2. / products / blue-shirt

Duplicate pages can divide your linking power as referrers can link to either URL. Duplicate content can also make it difficult for search engines to determine which URL to index and rank.

Internal links:

The duplicate pages problem mentioned above can also show up in your site’s internal links. Shopify uses two different links to direct customers to the same product details page in the image below.

The image on the left shows the link for a face mask as it appears on the store home page. The image on the right is the link for the same face mask as in the Recommended Products section of another product page.

While internal links don’t play directly into Google’s algorithms, they directly link equity to your product detail pages. This link fairness is diluted when spread across multiple connections, and search engines will have a more challenging time figuring out the primary URL.

Architecture issues:

Shopify automatically generates the URL for your product detail pages using the following structure: myshopifystorename.com/products/product-name. Store owners can only edit the last part of the URL, where the product name (derived from the page title) appears.

Shopify automatically generates URLs for product and collection pages. Store owners can only edit the last part of the URL (shown in green).

URLs are a minor ranking factor, so you should use descriptive words in your URLs to notify search engines about your page but also give potential customers an idea of ​​what they’re clicking on. Removing the “/ products” or “/ pages” URL paths gives you more space to include these descriptive keywords; unfortunately, Shopify does not have this option out of the box. There are, however, solutions, such as Cloudflare and their Cloud Worker interface, that can be implemented with the help of a developer, as we’ll see in our SEO tech guide for Shopify.

Product diagram:

Schema is structured data that can help search engines understand your site’s content. Search engines also use the schema to generate rich snippets, giving your products higher visibility in search results.

For example, Google uses the product schema in image search results to show a product’s price, availability, and ratings.

Google’s Popular Products section is another search function that uses a schema to provide product information to potential customers, although it is only available for clothing and fashion items.

The product schematic is built into most Shopify themes. However, there may be other types of structured data, such as recipe or FAQ schema, that you want to add, but your music does not support that. In this case, you can modify the structured data code in your article, dynamically inject structured data using JavaScript, or install a dedicated schema app. Whichever method you choose, you can check if your pages are tagged correctly using Google’s structured data testing tools.

  1. SEO, beyond products and category pages

Creating valuable, informative, and engaging content can help increase your store’s organic visibility. Content can give search engines more information about your site and potential customers more ways to discover your business. More visibility can mean more traffic and more sales.

The pages every store should have:

It is strongly recommended to create an “About us” and “Contact” page; these pages help potential customers become familiar with your business and allow them to contact you to resolve issues before and after buying from you.

Additionally, a page dedicated to your shipping information, return policy, and frequently asked questions can also allow you to communicate important details and reduce the time spent answering redundant questions. You can also add a mission statement or an “Our Story” page to help distinguish your brand from others.

You can blog on your Shopify store as a landing page for content that helps your brand differentiate, complements your transactional pages, and earns backlinks.

Keyword research:

Keyword research helps you understand how your target audience searches for the types of products you sell, the kinds of issues they are looking to solve, and other queries relevant to your business—using these words to inform your content strategy and optimize your pages.

Several keyword research tools can help indicate query popularity, seasonal trends, and related terms. Google Trends analyzes search query interest, which can be filtered by time and geographic region, displays associated queries, and allows you to compare interest between different keywords. You can also review the automatically suggested questions that appear in the search bar on Google, Bing, and Amazon for more keyword ideas.

Google Ads and Microsoft Advertising offer in-depth keyword tools that include monthly search volume, competitive estimates, and suggested bid amounts. Google Keyword Planner and Microsoft Keyword Planner are designed for advertisers, but they’re both free to use and provide a wealth of information. 

You should also assess the search results for the keywords you are looking for. The “People also ask” box and the “Related searches” section may complement your keyword search.

Take a look at the search results and features on the page to get an idea of ​​the search engines surfacing for this term set. Are the results filled with news articles signaling an intention to inform, or are the companies that sell products similar to yours? If so, you are more likely to rank for those keywords. 

Ecommerce content ideas:

Providing your audience with relevant content can help them get more value from your products or services while signaling their relevance to search engines. Here are some content ideas that might get you started:

  • Procedures and tutorials can educate your customers on how your products or services work. Consider creating a video to illustrate these points; you can then upload it to YouTube and embed it in your blog post or product details page to encourage visitors to shop with you.
  • Behind the scenes, content can boost your branding and give customers a reason to shop with you. For example, if you sell vegan cookie dough, you can create a video that shows how you test new recipes to educate customers about your process while also exciting them for the flavors to come.
  • Case studies can give you a head start over your competition. For example, if you sell tie-dye t-shirts, you can create a video detailing how your shirt colors stand up to competing brands, wash after wash.

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