That lovely phrase that can cause panic, doubt, and frustration.
I’m here to give you 10 things you can work on TODAY that will instantly improve your Shopify SEO.
All of these tips are meant to be actionable steps that you can do yourself.
Depending on your industry and how SEO savvy your competition is, you might be able to make a couple small tweaks to your site to beat out the competition.
The fact that Search Engines are picky should actually encourage you! This means that Search Engines aren’t just automatically connecting searchers with the biggest names out there - they are looking for what’s most relevant!
These tips will take some time to implement and make your site SEO friendly, but trust me, it will pay off!
So go ahead, get comfortable, grab a snack, and plug in your laptop. It’s time to get started!
The majority of time, your site visitors will land on your home page first. A good home page will catch a visitors attention quickly, and then guide them through the rest of your site.
Today I want to focus on the guiding part.
But, don’t worry - you can read more about the 10 most important things to have your websites home page here.
When you create your Shopify site, make sure to link to your product page on your home page.
This might seem like a no brainer, but some sites don’t have a clear link to their product page or have one at all on the home page.
If you don’t have links to your products on your home page, your visitors can’t find them easily.
So, make sure you link your products! In fact, I suggest having multiple links to your products on your home page. You could link them in your navigation, a best sellers section, and on 1-2 CTA’s throughout your site.
Creating content for your website is simply not enough if you’re trying to improve your SEO. You’re going to need to get strategic and start using keywords.
But what are keywords?
In simplest terms, it’s what someone would type into Google to find your website/article/blog post.
Try to put yourself in your ideal customers shoes. What would they be searching?
Keyword Planner with Google is an awesome resource that helps you select keywords and see how they rank!
Use your keywords:
Try to repeat your keyword throughout the web page. However you want to make sure you’re doing it naturally. Be careful not to overuse your keywords!
This is known as Keyword Stuffing and Google will view it as spam and penalize you for it!
People are visual creatures, and websites that contain images perform better than those that don’t! However, it’s essential to make sure you format your pictures correctly.
When you include images on your site, be sure to use the keywords we discussed in tip #2 in the Shopify Image titles, descriptions, and name fields.
Also, make sure you rename your images from something like “IMG_138405.JPG” to something more specific like “cbd-muscle-gel”. Renaming your images helps improve SEO because it tells the Search Engine what your pictures are of.
Don’t forget to optimize your photos before you upload! I talk about this process in depth in this post.
Let’s start out with the basic’s.
Page Titles (commonly referred to as title tags) can be found on the browsers tab, on Search Engine result pages, and on external websites.
Meta Descriptions are the text you will see on Search Engines below your sites title and URL. Here's what it looks like:
Pro Tip: In order for potential site visitors to see your description, keep the text between 140-160 characters.
Editing title tags and meta descriptions of your products and categories is pretty easy with Shopify.
To do it, pick one of your collection or product pages, scroll down the bottom of the page, and you’ll see “Search engine listing preview.” Click website SEO. (Add picture)
Couple things to keep in mind when editing page titles and meta descriptions:
When adding a product or collection page, Shopify will give you the option to write a description.
I highly recommend doing this step! Not only will Google like you better (because they use this description to understand your page) but your customers will also appreciate all the details about the product they considering buying!
Pro tip: Naturally add in some keywords here. Make sure not to overuse them.
Ever get annoyed that a page is taking too long to load, ultimately making you leave the site prematurely?
Search Engines know that this frequently happens, so they make it a SEO ranking factor.
Your site has got to be fast to optimize SEO!
But how do you do that?
Here are some quick tips:
Want more info on these points? Check out How to Improve your Shopify Site Speed and 2 Quick Ways to Immediately Boost Shopify SEO.
Google images is the second largest search engine in the world.
AKA you can also get traffic from Google via your images.
But here’s the problem - Google doesn’t know what your pictures are of unless you tell them. So, we tell them what’s in the picture by adding in alt text and by renaming your images (like I mentioned in tip #3)
Alt text (alternative text) tells Google what the image is.
Here’s how to add alt text in Shopify: Upload an image > Click … in the right hand corner > Click Edit alt text
So how do you write effective alt text?
Glad you asked!
Let's use this picture as an example.
An accurate description of this photo might be something like:
A white container with CBD Muscle Gel written in orange text on top of a white counter. The product is made by Batch and is full of 2 fl oz of product.
Alright, now let's cut down the description to just the essentials.
The alt text you could write would look something like this:
“CBD Muscle Gel, white container, Batch, 2 fl oz.”
This describes the product in a clear and concise manner.
Note: Punctuation matters when creating your alt text! Use commas to separate content and periods at the end of a sentence.
Shopify stores can have multiple domain names. For example, your site could have these variations.
While they all might look pretty similar to you, they aren’t the same site and it confuses Search Engines. Because all of these sites have identical content, Search Engines have no idea which site to rank. So, you have to tell them.
The good news is that most of the time when your custom domain is added to Shopify, your traffic is already redirected to the primary domain.
If not, it’s pretty easy to switch.
Go to Online Store > Domains.
If you see the message “Traffic from all your domain redirects to this primary domain” then you’re good.
If you see the message “Traffic from your domains is not being redirected to this primary domain,” then click “Enable redirection.”
“What are backlinks and why do they matter for SEO?”
Good question, my friend!
Backlinks (also sometimes called inbound links) are incoming links to your website. In simpler terms, they links from other sites that point to your site.
They are important for SEO because they have indicate the importance or popularity of a website.
"So how do I do this?"
Glad you asked!
Here are some ideas:
Search Engines like it when your website proves that you’re an expert in your field. This is because they want to show their users the best and most relevant content so that they will continue using their services.
To show them that you’re an expert, link applicable pages within your website.
Here’s an example of this.
Want to learn more about SEO? Check out my post on User Experience and 2 Quick Ways to Immediately Boost Shopify SEO.
You’ve probably noticed I’ve done this a lot on this post. That’s because I’m proving to Search Engines that I’m a Shopify Expert.
By taking the time to link relevant content, your site visitors will get more out of your site, spend more time on your site, and increase the chances of making a sale.
It’s a win-win!
SEO is an art, not a science, but by following these tips, you’ll set up your website for success!
Remember that SEO will grow and improve over time as you build it up. Search engines won’t expect you to be perfect right from the start. SEO is always changing and requires a lot of attention, but it doesn’t take hours upon hours to start seeing results.
Now it’s your turn, did these Shopify SEO tips help you? Which of these SEO tips are new to you? I’d love to hear from you!
As always, if you’re inserted in working together on your website, reach out to me directly!