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In order to succeed, Shopify still needs to take into account SEO. As with any website, Shopify sites depend on Google finding them to be able to make sales via organic search. This means the pages need to be optimised in order to target these search phrases. To do this, it is important to start with the basics of SEO and see how these are applied to Shopify.
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Shopify SEO – URLs
Shopify does have some inbuilt SEO friendly features. They include by default SEO friendly URLs, meaning that the title of the products can be included in the URLs to boost the appearance on google for those keywords.
This is pulled from the title of the product. The URL is generated from this, meaning that you do not need to manually set this up. The bottom section of the product backend on Shopify also allows you to see the SEO appearance from a Google perspective, so that you can alter this before the product goes live. Or see how it would look without having to find the product on Google first.
If we look at the ‘edit website SEO’ option it allows us to amend the Page title description and URL which would have been manually set before from the default product values in the product title and description previously. However this option will allow us to override this value should we decide that we want to show it differently within the search engines, but retain the original values on the Shopify page.
For example, here we can set the page title and the description. The original shows in Grey so you can see what you are replacing currently. Of course only part of the URL is editable since the first section is attached to your domain and the subfolder to that of the products. This may enable you to set a title which might be more sales orientated to try and entice people to click onto your listing, without adding something sales orientated on the page itself.
Shopify SEO – Product Tags
There is also another feature for product tags that will also effect SEO. Since search engines can define what a product is by tags, this feature is worth making use of to help them identify the products you are selling. By adding the tags they keywords will display in a tag style format and enable more keyword specific relationships between products on your pages, rather than relying on just the product title and description to determine what keywords the product relates to.
Shopify SEO – Product Collections
It is also possible to group products into collections. This will help your SEO if you are able to group products into collections which represent the keywords you are targeting. It gives another opportunity for those keywords to be added to the site as well and keeping the content organised.
Within the collections options, there is also the ability to optimise those sections.
For example, you can add the description, which will auto-populate the SEO section relating to that collection . . .
By adding a detailed description this will improve the chances of being found on the search engines for that phrase and category of products.
The same with the products, there is an option to edit the Search engine listing preview and improve the keyword placement here. This gives you a more general keyword option. What we mean is that products usually target very specific keywords, however here you are able to target the keywords which generalise the products you are selling, rather than the products themselves.
Again with the products you are able to edit the URL to better target the SEO phrases you would like. However, only the last section of the URLs is editable so for multiple URLs is it good to use dashes between the keywords.
Shopify SEO – Google Shopping
Shopify also allows you to target the Google shopping feed. This means it will tailor your product XML data to match the required structure for Google shopping to import and list your products into their shopping feed. What this does from an SEO point of view is open up your store to the possibility of targeting another channel, Google shopping as well as Google’s regular search.
Shopify SEO – Google Sitemap
Shopify automatically creates a sitemap for the website for its users to be able to submit their products to Google for indexing. This can be useful for getting feedback from google search console. This will help users connect through statistics and insights on how the visitors to their site are interacting with their pages and also give some further information about the keywords they used to find the website.
This leads us to the other SEO elements relating to Shopify, images.
It is important to take advantage of images as much as possible to increase SEO exposure. We would suggest adding as many images for any product as possible and being sure to use the alt tags for images so that search engines know what the images are.
By adding plenty of images it boosts the chances that your Shopify site will rank over sites for a product with fewer images.
Shopify has an option next to each image that you upload within the products section to allow you to set information about that image as we previously mentioned. So we can increase the visibility of that image within the search engines.
Shopify SEO – Building Backlinks
When it comes to backlinks, Shopify is no different from any other website. It is recommended to build backlinks if possible from your content on various places around the web back to your Shopify store.
One of the easiest ways to do this is via the social media channels that a business may already have. By utilising existing channels this enables a quick process for building the backlinks to the Shopify site. Other good methods for building backlinks may be via blog posts and other online publications relating to the products and services on your site.
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