Shopify SEO: Step By Step Guide To Optimize Shopify
Are you looking for a Shopify SEO guide to get more traffic and sales to your store? No matter the platform, the same SEO strategy work if you want your e-commerce store to be found in search results. With some easy tweaks and optimizations to your Shopify store, you can enhance your visibility, rank on the first page for your targeted keywords.
What is Shopify SEO and why does it matter?
Search engine optimization is the process of creating more natural traffic from sites like Google, Bing or Yahoo. Shopify is an advanced e-commerce Content Management System & shopping cart with built-in Search Engine Optimization elements. It comes with some useful elements for SEO such as a blog and the ability to redirect but it can also create SEO problems like duplicate content. In this Shopify SEO guide, we’re going to walk you through simply tweaks and optimizations to master SEO for your Shopify store and rank #1 in 2020
Launching Your Shopify Store
The fact is, site store speed mainly depends on the site theme, so before you purchase or install a theme, make sure that it won’t hurt your speed and performance.
- Look for a fast and responsive theme.
- Check for an up-to-date copy of your template and check the live it’s preview. The easiest way to check your loading speeds is by running your URL through online tools like PageSpeed Insights, GTMetrix or Web Page. You can test and see the suggestions to make that page faster.
- Once you have chosen a theme, remember to keep it up to date.
On-page Optimizations in Shopify
The same SEO principles that apply to a regular website apply to Shopify.
- Upload a robots.txt file so bots can crawl your site.
- Ensure you have an XML sitemap to guide Google through the architecture of your site.
- Submit your Shopify store’s sitemap to Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools
- Install Google Analytics.
- Validate HTML and CSS.
- Purchase an SSL certificate and upgrade to HTTPS.
- Correct any crawl errors and redirect issues.
- Include target keywords for a given page in the title and H1.
- Optimize meta descriptions, as this can affects click-through-rate (CTR).
- Optimize headings (H1s, H2s, etc.) in a natural way.
- Optimize images (file name, alt text, and image size)
You need optimize all future pages as you add them, including collections page and product pages.
Optimize Your Shopify Site Structure
The way your content is organized on your page is very essential to SEO success. A simpler site structure not only help your customers find what they wish fast but also makes it easily for search engines to crawl your site and rank your products. An SEO-friendly, simple site structure might look like this:
Organizing your content is easy with Shopify, using one of these structures:
Homepage » Category Pages » Product Pages Homepage » Category Pages » Sub-Category Page » Product Pages
Moreover, An about page and contact page on your site will help your shopify website more credible and trustworthy with visitors and search engines
Improve the User Experience
Now let’s have a look at some useful ways to enhance the user experience on your site, which will also help you to rank higher in search results.
1. Boost Your Site Speed
Speed matters for user experience, but it’s also a Google ranking factor. Optimizing your Shopify store for speed is almost exactly the same as any other website. Small improvements like the ones listed below should help improve load times:
- Compress images
- Minimize redirects
- Enable browser caching
- Use a content delivery network (CDN)
- Remove any Shopify apps you are not using
- Avoid using image sliders (in favor of one, optimized image).
- Avoid using a large number of web fonts on your site, or even consider ditching them entirely in favor of web safe fonts (these load faster).
- Use Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) format for your Shopify pages and posts
2. Use a Responsive Design
Ensure your shopify store works on all devices, since visitors are buying using their smartphones more and more. Responsive themes can greatly enhance user experience and keep visitors on your site longer. Since Google looks at time-on-page as a marker of a site’s value, having a site that’s easy to navigate and read can improve rankings. In turn, improved rankings and better usability result in repeat visitors and increase conversions
3. Improve Average Time on Page
Low session duration enhance your bounce rates and kill your conversions. So, it is essential to create your Shopify site in a way that retains attention for as long as possible. Here’s how you can do this.
- Generate absolutely unique content whether that means writing engaging, in-depth blog posts or showing great product pictures, give visitors a reason to hang about and eyeball your content for ages!
- Use a clear navigation structure that makes it easy for users to get from one part of your website to another.
- Integrate a clear and intuitive buy buttons and strong calls-to-action (CTAs)
- Use internal linking. for example, add ‘see also’ resources or ‘suggested further reading’ call to actions
- Encourage users to write comments on your blog posts
- Embed videos on your product pages
- One thing that’s crucial to remember however is not to just put any old content or ‘fluff’ on a page to keep people there longer: whatever you place on it has to be of real value to a visitor.
Research the Right Target Keywords
Keyword research is an essential step in your Shopify SEO. The best way to start isn’t by using good tools, but also making a list of at least five main topics that your clients care about and that are nearly related to your goods. Once you understand how potential customers search for the types of products, you’ll want to dive deeper into search volume for a particular keyword.The higher the volume, the more value a keyword has, and the more competitive it will be. Look for keywords with high potential search volume, and a low to medium difficulty to rank. Check out some tool that provide you with valuable insights related to your target keywords:
- Google Keyword Planner
Tips find inspiration for keywords from places like:
- your own buyer personas
- searching forums and subreddits related to your goods
- social media hashtags related to your products
- See the titles, meta descriptions, and image alt-text used on competitors’ sites
Optimize Your Shopify Products Pages
Ensure your product pages are fully optimized. Pasting the same generic sentence on each page won’t cut it.
- Stop duplicate content, you can add variants to each product. If duplicate products are unavoidable, use the rel=canonical tag to the product you prefer to take priority. If this is a continuous problem like if your shopify store is duplicating products across collection pages, you can download an plugin like the NoFollow & NoIndex Manager to control over what gets followed and indexed.
- Provide your shoppers with the information about shipping, return, sizing on the product page.
- Make sure your pictures are optimized with a descriptive file name and alt text.
- Add reviews on the page. Not only does it brings more value/info for customers, but it’s free content!
- Don’t utilize manufacturer descriptions! Compose your own.
- Add Schema Markup For Product Pages: Showcase the important product information right up front in organic search results by adding Schema Markup.
- Use different variants like product categories, blog posts, ratings, etc. for your products.
When a product becomes out-of-date or you want to move it to a different stock, can you delete the product? This can lead to big SEO problem. Make sure you set up 404 redirects for all deleted products. Link to the most related live product if you can, or the most relevant collections page. If not, redirect to the homepage.
Shopify Off-Page SEO and Content SEO guide
Rank Higher With Content Marketing
A lot of Shopify users focus so much on their product catalogues (the images, the descriptions, the keywords used etc.) that they ignore a extremely essential aspect of SEO: generating fresh/quality content, usually in the form of blog posts. Your Shopify platform offer a built-in blog feature. Blogging is a wonderful way to build your audience, earn more exposure, and boost more traffic and sales for your online store. Maintaining a blog will:
- Provide value to potential customers
- Help you target long-tail keywords.
- Improve your organic search visibility.
Use tools like Google Trends and BuzzSumo to find keyword opportunities. Compose long-tail content that has your product as the answer to a commonly asked question. Look through social media, Quora, Reddit, and niche forums to find these questions.
Your effort at creating unique content that ranks cannot be achieved without building links with reputable websites. Link building it’s not an easy task, but when done in a proper way, it leads to a higher amount of conversions to the shopify store. How can you get links to your store? Here are a few tips:
- Guest Posting: Write guest posts on relevant and high-quality guest posting sites to create the reputation and authority of your shopify site.
- Press release: Expand the reach of your company, build up the brand and gain publicity by outreaching high-quality PR sites to build quality links.
- Google News Site : Generate the quality links for your shopify store from Google News Site that has high authority.
- Directory submission: Directory submission offers a diverse link profile.
- Supplier/Manufacturer Links: If you sell products made or supplied by established companies, they may have a policy that authorized retailers can get a link. Email them to request if they will link to your website.
- Industry/Influencer Voices: Cooperate with industry leaders & influencers for interviews to build both links and content.
- Broken Links: This need a little bit of detective work to find out broken links for products and services similar to those you supply . Once you explore one, reach out to the owner store displaying the broken link to have them link to your website instead. Since broken links can hurt SEO this is a mutually beneficial solution for both parties; they get to repair a broken link and you get a backlink.
Shopify apps for SEO
Shopify offers a pretty awesome collection of free or low-cost modules that allow you to add advanced functionality to your site without having to manually adjust the code. While your best bet is likely teaming up with a developer who’s comfortable with Shopify, here are some Shopify apps that can help improve the SEO of your site.
- Crush.pics: A useful automated tool of compressing large picture files. Essential for most Shopify website as many of these sites are heavily image-based.
- JSON-LD for SEO: This extension may be used if you do not have a Shopify developer who can help you to add custom structured data to your website.
- Smart SEO: A module allow you add meta tags, alt tags, & JSON-LD
- Yotpo Reviews: Allow you to add product reviews to your website, making your content eligible for rich review stars in the SERPs.