Are you looking for a Shopify SEO guide to get more traffic and sales to your store?
“If you build it, they will come” may have worked before the digital age, but in today's internet age, it takes more than building a beautiful store to attract shoppers.
Yes, it's important to choose the right e-commerce platform for you , but what happens once the site is up and running for business? How will you reach potential customers? How are you going to get them to buy with you instead of your competitor?
Search engine rankings play an important role in how easily shoppers can find your store. The higher your ranking in search engine results, the more traffic your online store will have. This naturally leads to increased sales.
So how do you rank higher?
Search engine optimization with a theme ( SEO )
Does Shopify have good SEO?
Shopify comes with several SEO-optimized features, but there's so much more you can do to climb the rankings. Although SEO relies on keywords, it takes more than just sprinkling certain keywords into your site content to get your site ranked higher.
In this Shopify SEO guide , we'll walk you through 8 key steps to mastering your Shopify store's SEO and ranking #1 in 2023:
- Optimize your Shopify site structure
- Improve user experience
- Research the right target keywords
- Optimize your Shopify product pages
- Create links to your store
- Ranking higher with content marketing
- Use the best Shopify SEO apps and tools
Let's dive in...
Step 1. Optimize your Shopify site structure
How your content is organized on your page is very important for SEO success.
When buyers can find what they're looking for quickly and easily, they tend to spend more time on your site and view more pages, which can improve your search engine rankings.
How can you make your site easier to navigate?
Simplify. Don't overuse categories and subcategories.
A simpler site structure makes it easier for search engines to crawl your site and rank your products.
A simple and SEO friendly site structure is adhered to in SEO Fastra theme
You can see from the diagram that your products are just a few clicks away from your homepage, making it easy and quick for shoppers to find what they're looking for and for search engines to easily crawl the site.
Organizing your content is easy with Shopify, using one of these structures:
Home Page » Category Pages » Product Pages
Home Page » Category Pages » Sub Category Page » Product Pages
Remember that your site must first be designed for customers.
In addition to product and category pages, you will need to include an About page and a Contact page on your site. These pages let buyers and search engines know that you are credible and trustworthy, so don't skip these pages.
Finally, include a search box on your page. Will it help with SEO? Not directly. But it will help visitors find what they're looking for, which is an important part of eCommerce optimization so you can make more money from the traffic you already have.
Step 2. Improve user experience
Now let's look at some ways to improve the user experience on your site, which will also help you rank higher in search results.
Increase your site speed Site speed is all about accessibility. When your site is easy to navigate and everything moves quickly, visitors have no reason to be frustrated. This means they are likely to spend more time on your site.
To make your Shopify store faster, you can:
- use a fast and mobile-friendly theme, we recommend Fastra
- use smaller, optimized images
- remove any apps you don't use
- avoid using cursors
responsive design Responsive design means your Shopify store will look great on any device, including desktops, tablets, and smartphones.
Responsive themes can greatly improve user experience and keep visitors on your site longer. Since Google considers time on page 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 drive repeat visitors and increase conversions. Wonderful things for an e-commerce site.
It's important to make sure your store is mobile-friendly as more and more shoppers are buying with their smartphones.
Step 3. Research the right target keywords
No Shopify SEO guide would be complete without guidance on keyword research – the foundation of SEO success.
But how do you find the right keywords to drive traffic to your store?
The best way to start is not to use fancy tools, but simply to make a list of at least five main topics that interest your customers and are closely related to your product.
Put yourself in your customers' shoes. What search terms would YOU use to find the products you sell?
- your own buyer personas
- search for forums and subreddits related to your products
- social media hashtags related to your products
- looking at image titles, meta descriptions and alt text used on competitor sites
Step 4. Optimize your Shopify product pages
At this point, you should have a list of keywords and a logical site structure. The next step is to optimize your store pages using your keywords.
Start with your first few pages first. This will likely be your homepage, main product collections, and top selling product pages. We're talking about which pages are the most profitable and have the best conversions.
If you are opening a brand new store, you should always optimize your homepage. There are several easy ways to choose which other pages to optimize:
- Pages of the products that generated the most buzz until the launch of your store
- Pages for products related to the most searched keywords you found (> 10K searches/month)
How to Optimize Title Tags for Categories
Now that you know which pages you're going to optimize first, let's decide what we want to name our pages site-wide.
You should use your keywords consistently, like in this example formula:
Keyword 1 – Shop for Keyword 2 – Store Name
Unicorn T-shirts - Buy Unicorn T-shirts online - The Store
How to optimize product title and meta description
Next, we need to write titles and descriptions for our products and categories. Yes, you can use marketing copy from vendor websites, but your customers and SEO will thank you for the original content.
Your keywords should flow naturally into the copy. If they seem distracting or difficult to fit into the feed, you might want to re-evaluate your chosen keywords.
Image alt text can also be SEO optimized, but even that should fit naturally.
Step 5. Create links to your store
Backlinks are used by search engines to determine how the community at large likes your site. Think of it as word of mouth for SEO. This is an off-page optimization strategy that relies on establishing your credibility and reliability.
How can you get links to your store? Here are a few tips :
If you sell products made or supplied by established companies, they may have a policy that authorized retailers can obtain a link. Email them asking if they will link to your store.
Influencer Voice Reach out to industry leaders and influencers for interviews to generate both links and content.
You may already be mentioned in several places without being linked. You can use mention.com to find these mentions. Then send an email asking them to link to your site with the mention.
It takes a bit of detective work to find broken links for products and services similar to what you offer. Once you find one, contact the owner of the site displaying the broken link to link to your site instead. Since broken links can hurt SEO, this is a mutually beneficial solution for both parties; they fix a broken link and you get a backlink.
Step 6. Ranking higher with content marketing
Now that everything is in place, let's talk about content marketing .
Content is the reason people come to your site. As an e-commerce site owner, you might be tempted to skimp on content or consider product descriptions as content enough.
Trust us, you'll be so much more successful if you take the time to create original content that adds to your overall user experience.
Deciding what to write about can be daunting, but it doesn't have to be. Make a list of all the questions your customers ask you or anything you think customers might want answered. Not product information, but real answers.
Your content is a chance to let customers and potential customers get to know your brand in a way that doesn't involve selling. It's also one of the easiest ways to rank for more keywords and get more backlinks .
Step 7. Use the Best Shopify SEO Apps and Tools
In this section, we're going to cover 5 Shopify tools and apps that you can use to improve your site's ranking.
- Constantly updated as search engines change
- Automatically checks your store and alerts you to issues via email
This Shopify app helps you target SEO issues worth solving, helping you save time and money while improving your SEO. It provides automatic and regular checking of page titles and headers, meta descriptions, speed, content, article structure, etc., all to ensure that your site is as optimized as possible.
- Reduce the time spent optimizing your site
- Eliminates the need to manually enter meta tags or alt tags
- Provides structured data to Google and other search engines to improve search results
Smart SEO lets you generate relevant meta tags for your Shopify store's product, collection, blog, and article pages, as well as alt tags for product images, without having to make every edit manually. Additionally, the app pushes your store information to search engines using JSON-LD data that is already structured the way search engines need it.
SEO Image Optimizer
- Increase Google Image Search Traffic
- Quickly and easily optimize images
- No coding knowledge necessary
Images are usually what sells your products, so it's important to have plenty of them on your site. Of course, quality images can also be resource-intensive, so you'll definitely want to use an image optimizer like this to boost your site's speed.
- Check all pages and posts for SEO strength and get recommendations for improvement
- Edit multiple pages with one click
- Always updated for Google's algorithm
Yoast makes it very easy to optimize your site using the keywords you choose.
- See top competitor keywords
- Find out what keywords your competitors are ranking for
- Find out which pages on competing sites are driving the most organic search traffic
SEMRush can help you find overlooked and underutilized keywords that you can use to increase traffic and conversions.