What Is SEO Marketing
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Since the days of keyword stuffing and clickbait copy, search engine optimization (SEO) has gone a long way. “SEO Marketing

To appear first in a Google search result, your store’s content must match the purpose of a potential visitor. Optimizing your site for SEO might sound daunting and time-consuming, but it’s actually just a matter of learning how search engines function and how searchers use them, incorporating that knowledge into your page text, and then carefully working through some readily accessible backend tweaking.

We’ve created a step-by-step tutorial for optimizing your Shopify store—no prior SEO knowledge is necessary.

VennDiagram
The key to ranking your ecommerce store in search engines is getting all of your SEO disciplines to cooperate.

Why is SEO so important?

1. The majority of traffic comes from organic search

You can be losing out on visitors and sales if your shop doesn’t have an SEO strategy. According to Wolfgang Digital, search engine results pages will account for 35% of all visitors to online retailers and 33% of their income, making them the marketing channel that can generate the most both traffic and money.

2. Paid advertising costs are increasing and SEO is “free traffic”

Your profit margins may suffer if the majority of your sales come from paid advertising platforms like Facebook or Instagram. Although it takes time to build organic traffic, it should ultimately become your top route for acquiring customers, making its expenses tenable. Although it may take time and effort to develop organic traffic through SEO, the compounding impact of organic traffic makes it the most cost-effective way to attract clients. Even though the results are not seen right away, SEO should never be neglected.

3. Ranking first in search engines can get you up to 30% more daily traffic

In the SEO community, there is a running joke that if you wanted to hide a body, you should put it on page two. That’s because getting first place receives a disproportionately high number of clicks compared to coming in at position 11.

The possibility is that you can improve the page to attract more traffic, sometimes with the tiniest modifications, if you happen to have a page that is performing well for organic traffic even without having done any optimizations for search.

CTR of organic traffic
Click-through rates for searches performed with a shopping intent. Image source: Advanced Web Ranking.

Before you start: Essentials to improve your Shopify SEO

Before you start working on enhancing the SEO of your Shopify site, there are a few crucial things you need to put up. Which are:

  • Purchase a custom domain. Simply said, for your shop to flourish in SEO, it requires its own domain. Custom domains are more memorable and foster greater levels of confidence among potential customers who click through from search engines. It’s time to move to a custom domain like brandname.com if you still use brandname.myshopify.com. A custom domain may be purchased for $10 to $20 per year. We offer a guide on how to choose a domain name for your store if you need it.
  • Ensure you have Google Analytics installed on your site. You can observe how much traffic there is to your website and what it does with Google Analytics, which you can install on it for free.
  • Ensure you have Google Search Console installed on your site. In addition to other helpful information, Google Search Console shows you which sites rank for which searches, where they rank, and how many hits you receive.
  • Have a mobile-ready theme. Shopify has a few free themes, all of which are designed from the ground up with responsive web in mind. Even if there haven’t been any adjustments made, it’s essential to evaluate your theme’s mobile compatibility using this Google tool if you’ve made any alterations to it or had one produced.
  • Remove password protection. You might want to wait to make your store accessible to the general public and search engines if you’re still creating and organizing your product pages. However, if your shop is password-protected, search engines won’t be able to crawl or rank your pages on their search engine results page if they can’t view anything past your homepage.
  • Be on a paid plan. While free trial stores may be crawled and indexed, if you’re not on a paying account you won’t see the results of your labor until your trial is done because it takes longer than 14 days for a new store to rank.

You can go forward once you have verified that each of these is in place. Improve your store’s organic traffic and exposure in search engines like Google and Bing by using this SEO approach.

Technical SEO

Under-the-hood SEO is known as technical SEO. It frequently goes unnoticed but may significantly enhance the search performance of your website, just like new engine oil keeps a car running. Technical SEO makes ensuring that your website is optimized for mobile devices, has a fast page load time, and is optimized for search engine crawlers. Additionally, by making sure that your site’s navigation, internal connections, and structure all facilitate simple browsing and that all necessary meta tags are included, you may optimize it for both search engines and people.

If there are mistakes on your website in these areas, it may hurt your rankings while the problems are being fixed. You’ll gain the following advantages by correcting these mistakes:

  • Because the site loads quicker and all key pages and information are simple to find, users are more engaged with it.
  • Because the site is simpler to crawl, there will be more crawling activity from crawl bots, which will eventually lead to an increase in organic traffic.

Note: This is a list of the prerequisites you must put in place for your site to perform well in search, not a comprehensive guide to technical SEO for Shopify.

1. Create a logical internal linking strategy with your menus

  • Cost: $0, or $4/month for one app
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀🚀🚀🚀

Internal linking is simple to overlook, especially when you are first creating your online business. I realize that it doesn’t appear as significant in comparison to releasing new pages and advertising your business.

It takes more than simply copying links to relevant anchor text throughout your page to create internal links. It involves building the essential authority-passing pillar pages that will, in turn, transmit authority to a large number of other pertinent website pages and blog entries. You may do this by having a straightforward navigation structure from your homepage that is created for both users and search engine crawlers.

Consider the exercise gear brand Gymshark. Its main page features just two straightforward top-level menu choices. When you mouse over either Womens or Mens, a dropdown menu of available items and collections appears. Gymshark’s standard items, styles that are distinctive across its product line, styles that are currently popular, and accessories that don’t quite fit into other categories make up the dropdown menu.

SEO example menu navigation
Gymshark features a structured menu that is easy to understand and browse, which is advantageous for both users and search engines.

It’s important to note that this menu arrangement was created with people in mind, not search engines, first. The development of customer trust depends on this. According to our study on what builds trust with new customers, having category navigation that is simple to use across all devices is essential if you want to succeed in driving sales.

Yes, Gymshark creates a simple menu and category navigation system, but it also selects its most crucial sites that will receive organic traffic in this menu and optimizes the anchor text for them. This is accessible under Women > Products. You’ll discover that when you click through to Shorts, this page ranks for relevant search phrases like “exercise shorts” and “women’s workout shorts,” which attract the right kind of search engine users.

Now the question is, “how do I apply this to my business?”

As an illustration, consider Kinda Hot Sauce, the hot sauce retailer featured in our content demo. Say we’ve introduced three more flavors to our lineup of habanero hot sauce since we’ve heard from consumers that they enjoy it and want more versions of it. The following step is as follows:

  • Conduct keyword research. To estimate the monthly search volume for “habanero hot sauce,” we enter the term into a free SEO tool like Ubersuggest‘s keyword analyzer (4,400). Great! We’ve discovered a brand-new category to nest our new product line under.
  • Create product pages. When creating a product listing on our Shopify site, we navigate to Products > Add product and make sure that all fields are completed, including the title, description, SKUs, and shipping details.
  • Create a collection page. To create a new page and add the three new product pages, go to Products > Collections. By striving to incorporate “habanero hot sauce” in the page title, description, URL, and handle, we make sure to adhere to on-page SEO best practices while filling out the Search engine listing preview.
  • Add our new page to the menu. We navigate to Online store > Navigation > Main menu on our Shopify store. From there, we can quickly add our latest assortment of habanero hot sauce to the Shop section of our website.
  • Add a breadcrumbs app to your store. It’s simple to display your clients the route they took through your category tree with an app like Category Breadcrumbs ($4/month). They may easily find their way back thanks to their “breadcrumb trail” by selecting the relevant link. You may click “Shopify blog” to return to the blog’s home page, for instance, if you’re reading this blog post on the Shopify blog.
collections page seo example

2. Submit your sitemap to Google Search Console and fix site errors

  • Cost: $0
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪💪💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀🚀🚀🚀

This article’s introduction advised you to register for a Google Search Console account. The next step is to submit your sitemap when you’ve finished that. Your store may be scanned and indexed by search engines by submitting your sitemap to Google Search Console. To put it simply, a crawling bot visits your e-commerce site, browses the homepage, then proceeds to all of your product categories, collections, and product pages before returning to the top. To list them on search engine results pages, it does this.

GoogleBot
A visual representation of how crawl bots explore your website and its pages.

The good news is that Shopify automatically generates a sitemap for each store when it is installed. You won’t need to construct your own; only very experienced SEO managers should do this. If you use foreign domains and are on the Shopify plan or higher, you must submit the sitemap file for each domain. If you are on the Basic plan, you will only receive one automatically created sitemap.

You may learn how to submit your Shopify store’s sitemap to Google Search Console in this six-minute video.

Fixing possible website issues comes next. You’ll need to wait until a crawl has happened if you’ve just submitted your sitemap, so you might want to bookmark this page and return to it in a week or two. What you should do is:

  • Log in to Search Console and view the Coverage report. Then select Coverage from the Index menu on the left. A graph with the check boxes Error, Valid with warnings, Valid, and Excluded will show. You just want to focus on Error for the time being.
  • Identify any 404 errors or redirect errors (if they’re reported). Search console will report these in the list as:
    • When a Googlebot crawls a URL but the page doesn’t instantly change for the user to the new destination, this is referred to as a “redirect error.” This is due to several factors, including an excessively lengthy redirect chain, a redirect loop, a URL that is too long, or an invalid or empty URL. Similar to before, choose “Redirect error” to get a complete list of these URLs and export it.
    • When a Googlebot crawls a URL but the page doesn’t instantly change for the user to the new destination, this is referred to as a “redirect error.” This is due to a number of factors, including an excessively lengthy redirect chain, a redirect loop, a URL that is too long, or an invalid or empty URL. Similar to before, choose “Redirect error” to get a complete list of these URLs and export it.
  • Fix 404 and redirect errors in your store. Being proficient with spreadsheets will come in helpful here. Fixing these issues might be challenging, but here’s what to do:
    • Refer to the “Table” sheet on your spreadsheet of 404 errors. The next step is to locate the most pertinent page to redirect to. For instance, it would make sense to reroute a product’s page on our Kinda Hot Sauce demo store to either the closet match or the collections page if the product was discontinued. You can delete or conceal the “Last crawled” column, but make a note of them next to the URL. Redirecting to the home page is a suitable default if you can’t locate a match.
    • Go to Online Store > Navigation in the Shopify admin. Then select “Add URL redirect” under “URL Redirects.” Referring to your spreadsheet of 404 errors, fill out the appropriate fields here, and then click “Save redirect.” Try our help article on creating redirects if you need more precise instructions on how to do this. If you need to establish more than a few redirects, you might want to think about using the bulk import feature for URLs.
    • I’ll then briefly suggest a remedy for redirect problems. By attempting to load a series of two more pages on your website that all point to one another, redirect loops cause both users and search engines to become figuratively trapped in a loop. Page C should load page A, page A should load page B, and page B should load page C, according to the redirect’s configuration.
URL
A visual of what a redirect loop error looks like to search crawlers and bots.
  • To export your list of URL redirects from your Shopify store, follow the instructions. By consulting both your Shopify and Google Search Console redirect exports, you must now determine which redirects are broken. Combine the sheets and filter them if you are proficient with spreadsheet tools to create a list of the mistakes. If not, copying the URL error box and using the Find function (Cmd+F on a Mac or Ctrl+F on a Windows computer) may help, but it involves a lot of back-and-forth clicking.
  • Make a note in your spreadsheet of where you want the redirect to go before going to Online Store > Navigation > URL redirects, which is similar to changing 404 pages. Find the redirect you want to change using the search box, then click it to make the necessary changes.
  • The next stage is to confirm that your efforts have been successful after all of this. This may be accomplished by periodically visiting Search Console and checking the Coverage tab until all mistakes have been discovered.

Note: Finally, use the Shopify Experts marketplace to hire an organization that offers SEO services or a specialized SEO expert to execute this for you if any of this seems too complicated or daunting to you. Find a specialist.

3. Optimize your images to load quickly and be found by search engines

  • Cost: $0, or $4/month for one app
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀🚀🚀

Images on your website are also crawled by search engines in addition to the text on your page. Using optimized photos doesn’t prevent you from showcasing stunning photographs. It does a better job of displaying and showcasing your photographs to customers.

Your shop should put a high premium on reducing picture sizes. According to HTTP Archive, photos account for 46% of the typical web page’s size, making them huge and potentially slowing down page load times if not optimized. The good news is that, because Shopify is hosted ecommerce software, you don’t have to worry about the technical parts of selecting a CDN that is safe and quickly serves your photos because it is already covered by your subscription. To help your photographs be seen and indexed by search engines more easily, here are some quick tips for lowering their file size:

  • Use images in JPG or PNG formats. When serving photos, Shopify automatically uses the WebP format, which offers greater compression for images on the web and reduces file size by an average of over 30% compared to more conventional file types like JPEG and PNG. Additionally, since JPEGs and PNGs are the smallest picture file types, use just them when submitting photos to your website. Most native image applications that come with your system may be used to accomplish this. For instance, you may use the Preview application on a Mac to save photographs in various formats by selecting File > Export and then JPG or PNG from the dropdown menu. Note: Use PNGs for bespoke graphics or drawings, etc., and JPEGs for photography; never use GIFs unless they are for moving images.
  • Reduce the file size of your images. In other words, it may take longer for a website to load the bigger the picture file size. Your photographs and the website will load more quickly if you reduce the size of your images. Images’ quality might suffer when they are resized. A typical resolution of 72 pixels per square inch should be used (PPI). If you’re just getting started, we suggest using Shopify’s free image resizer.
  • Add images to your sitemap. Since so many people use visual search engines, especially when looking for things like clothing, your photographs must show up in search results. It is simpler for search engines to crawl and index photographs if you add them to your sitemap. Shopify automatically builds and submits to Google Search Console an.xml Sitemap for all images associated with each product, blog post, and page in your Shopify store. If you want to include all of the images on your product pages, however, I suggest installing Image Sitemap ($4/month), an app that automatically builds and submits an.xml Sitemap for all images associated with every product, blog post, and page in your Shopify store.
  • Optimize your alt attributes carefully. When a browser is unable to show pictures correctly, alt attributes are used to provide a text substitute. They are also employed for online accessibility, so if a visitor to your blog has vision problems, the alt text will be visible to them. As it enables items to appear in Google pictures, alt text is crucial for e-commerce sites and image SEO. To help those with impaired eyesight understand what the image depicts, our recommendation, in this case, is to describe it in clear English. This in turn may improve the ranking of your photographs. Try “Image of Pixi’s Glow tonic facial toner in 250ml, a highly concentrated, revitalizing face toner to deep clean your pores” instead of “facial toner 250ml.”
  • Name your images in plain language. When you save an image to your computer, this is the file name that appears. Its site URL will remain the same after upload. It should ideally match the page’s keyword. For instance, we want to save the picture file name as “habanero-hot-sauce.jpg” if our website is about habanero hot sauce. This implies that in addition to our product page displaying queries including “habanero hot sauce,” search engines should also display our product photographs, ideally under the images tab.

On-page SEO

On-page The main way to explain to viewers and search engines what your website is about is through SEO. To rank your page on search engine results pages, search engines check for a few on-page elements (SERPs). Relevance of keywords and topics, metadata, the slug in the page URL, and your graphics are just a few examples of on-page characteristics. This Moz article is a wonderful resource for further details on on-page characteristics.

We’ll go over the fundamentals of ecommerce keyword research in this article, as well as how to interpret search intent and some advice on content optimization to help your sites rank for their intended keywords.

1. Keyword research

  • Cost: $0, $99/month for an SEO tool
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀🚀🚀🚀

Consider keywords as the queries users use and enter them into search engines for a more straightforward perspective. The syntax often resembles how people speak when asking inquiries; for example, you may enter “purchase new iPhone” rather than “I want to buy the new iPhone.”

Let me explain the differences between short tail and long tail keywords first.

  • Short tail: Ahrefs’s keyword explorer shows 38,000 monthly searches for “mens shorts,” which are generally two or three words long and have significant search volumes.
  • Long tail: Ahrefs’ keyword explorer reveals 40 monthly searches for “mens shorts with pockets,” which are often longer and have a lower search volume.

How people use keywords in search engines to buy products

To select a term for which you want your website to rank, it is helpful to comprehend the purpose of the related search query. These are the different types of search queries:

  • Navigational Queries are searches made to discover a specific webpage or website. Instead of putting the URL into the browser’s navigation bar or using a bookmark, a user may type “Facebook” into a search box to reach Facebook’s website.
  • Informational Typically, questions start with “how to,” “what,” “why,” etc. For these keywords, content that offers useful information pertinent to the inquiry is ranked.
  • Transactional Queries are searches that reveal a desire to close a deal. To do this, simply type a product name into the search field, for example, “Samsung galaxy.”

It’s crucial to comprehend how customers transition from not knowing what product they want or are seeking for to firmly deciding to buy when it comes to the customer journey in search engines.

Let’s start with a common item like smartphones. If you’ve been using smartphones for a while, you could already be using or have thought about using the most recent iPhone model. But what if you wish to wait before making your next update to see what else is available?

At this stage, you may use a search engine to look up informational terms like “best smartphone”; you’d likely click the top result after seeing several buyer’s guide-style articles ranking the top 10 to 15 cellphones. You could conclude after reading the article that the new iPhone model isn’t all that horrible after all, but you also enjoy the way the new Samsung Galaxy looks. Now that you’re in this situation, you undoubtedly want to know how their features and dependability compare, so you’ll probably go back to a search engine and type in another educational query, like “apple iPhone versus Samsung galaxy.” You’d have a better sense of what smartphone is right for you after reading one or more of the articles on the first page, and you could decide to give the new iPhone one more go. You go back to the search engine and enter a purchase-related query, “buy iPhone.” From there, you’ll probably locate Apple’s website, where you’ll finish the purchase.

SalesFunnel

How to choose a keyword

Now that you are aware of how people make purchases and how to decipher searchers’ intentions, it is time to learn how to do keyword research.

Researching keywords might be intimidating. You may be wondering where to begin, how to discover one, how to determine whether a keyword will rank, and how long it will take. We’ll show you how to find the answers to these queries.

  • Where to start with keyword research. Consider first what your product is or the category it belongs to. As an ecommerce platform, Shopify, for instance, we want a page to rank for this search keyword. What broad phrase would you use to describe your product?
  • Use paid tools or free tools to get competitive insight. Although there are several free and paid tools available, Keyword Surfer and MozBar, both of which are extensions for Chrome, are the greatest free tools. When you enter your keywords into Keyword Surfer, Google will display keyword volume in the address bar and on the SERP. You can find out a website’s domain authority and page authority using MozBar, which effectively tells you how trustworthy and respectable each is.
keyword research
  • You now have knowledge of a short tail keyword. Start focusing on a long-tail term associated with it. Finding a differentiation is important if you’re a new or developing business because it might be difficult to rank for these short tail keywords. Recall that your company’s USP gave it an advantage and helped it gain market share. It’s time to turn it into a long-tail term that will help people find your product and drive more traffic to it. To add the short tail term to the clipboard while using Keyword Surfer, click the star in the address bar. Do this when you search for long-tail keywords in the list of “Keyword suggestions.” When done, select “Export,” the three dots, and “Clipboard.” Now that this information has been stored in a CSV file, you may use it to build or improve your page.

2. Match search intent and create pages relevant to your keyword

  • Cost: $0, $99/month for an SEO tool
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀🚀🚀🚀

No matter what kind of search query your website is intended to answer, keep in mind that when selecting a term, Google and other search engines want to rank the sites that have the best chance of bringing the searcher’s trip to a successful conclusion. In the case of Google specifically, it doesn’t want the user to perform any other searches or to go “Back” and select a different search result.

The top 10 results on a SERP might provide you with a decent indication of the search intent when choosing a term to target. Simply search for the phrase to accomplish this, noting if the results are product pages or articles. For the time being, focus just on the organic results rather than the advertising, which are denoted by the word “Ads” to the left, or any other SERP elements like People Also Ask, photos, videos, or local listings.

Given a score, such as “9/10 product pages,” you may determine that the user’s search objective was to complete a transaction. The majority of the top 10 rankings should be articles if you’re conducting content marketing for your shop because they best serve informational queries.

You may use Google or other search engines to acquire suggestions for further limiting the search aim. When creating a page to target “habanero hot sauce,” for instance, I might check the “Related searches” box at the bottom of the SERP. In essence, this list helps me to understand what users are looking for when they conduct searches.

Because “habanero hot sauce” is a short tail keyword, these pre-populated words may be able to direct consumers to the query they were truly seeking but weren’t sure how to phrase if they reach result 10 and still don’t find a listing to click.

These terms and phrases are fantastic long tail keywords that I may keep in mind when I create my product page in an effort to increase its ranking. They may be used in the product description, the meta description, and the title as subheadings. Below, we’ll go into detail on how to achieve this.

related searches example

3. Content optimization to make your pages visible

  • Cost: $0, $99/month for an SEO tool
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀🚀🚀🚀

Your pages will rank better in search results if you use content optimization for the target keyword. Examples include changing or improving a page’s meta description, title tags, and content. When you have a certain term in mind that you want to rank for, content optimization is considerably simpler.

Asking yourself, “How can I make it clear to visitors what this page is about?” is the simplest method to learn content optimization. From there, you can do a page health check:

  • Does the heading clearly explain what is on the page?
  • Is the title of the page enticing? Does the meta description make this page seem to click-worthy?
  • Am I using the keyword or some variation of it in subheadings or the body of the content on the page?
  • Does the URL slug contain the keyword? Is it overly long or short?
  • What are the image file names? Do they have alt text filled in that clearly explains what’s displayed in the image?

Let’s dive into how we can do specific on-page content optimization.

1. Build your keyword into your heading

Using your emphasis keyword in the page title for transactional sites, like product pages, might make sense if it’s an identifier, but this is normally better saved for collections pages. Your items should ideally have intriguing names. Consider The Lip Bar as an illustration. It has a collection with “concealer” as the target keyword, but the product pages within the collection are specific to the shade range the product is in as well as the function of the product (for example, for the product 6:00 Ebony Caffeine Concealer, “6:00 Ebony” is the range, “Caffeine” is the function it serves (to help wake the skin), and “Concealer” is the widely recognized name for this product, which can tie in some SEO benefits ranking for “

lip bar product page seo example

⚠️ Important note: It’s crucial to use only one H1 in your formatting when generating your pages (or Heading 1 as this is called in the Shopify page editor). This ought to be saved for the entry for the title.

It is advisable to include the purpose, or what purpose the page serves, with navigational pages like your About or Contact pages (for example, “Contact us,” “Get in touch with us at [brand name],” or “How can we help?”). It should be as straightforward and obvious as possible.

2. Understand the topic behind the keyword and build it into your page

Building keywords into your pages doesn’t imply jamming them in or trying to employ odd, grammatically incorrect long tail keywords. Over ten years ago, this was a tactic to help pages rank for desired keywords, but today’s search engines are capable of understanding a page’s content and how to rank it without the need for them.

Instead, attempt to grasp the content behind the page (as we looked at above) before optimizing it to rank for keywords, and then do your best to cover the topic.

It is significantly simpler to collect keywords related to a topic if you use a professional SEO service to gain keyword information. Even yet, free tools may still be used to do this. Let me demonstrate how I may improve Kinda Hot Sauce’s new collections page on habanero hot sauce.

  • Start with Google. To learn more about similar searches for “habanero spicy sauce,” we need to check at the bottom of the search results, where Google provides related searches as well as what the autocomplete offers.
google autocomplete example
  • List what’s in the related searches and autocomplete. I would then open a fresh Google Doc and enter each of the aforementioned entries into it. I can already tell which sentences to cross out or eliminate from this list and which ones I may use. I’ll try my hand at writing a description for my collections page after that.
  • Draft out a title and description. It helps if I ask myself sincere questions about some of these terms in order to be able to produce a solid description for both people and SEO:
    • How important are Scoville levels to my customers?
    • During manufacturing, are my hot sauces fermented?
    • Do I have mango, pineapple, or garlic flavors? If yes, how can I share that on the page?
    • Is “spicy” or “ghost pepper” a good fit for me to include if my brand is focused on tasty, not overly spicy hot sauces?

I can simply use the responses to these questions to guide my writing. I don’t want to pack all of these sentences in, as I said before. I want to use words one at a time, checking them off as I go.

gathering keyword research for copypng
  • Upload to your store. I can now post the collections page I’ve just finished writing to my store.

Although this example focuses on collections pages particularly, you may use the same procedure for any page of your choice, such as product pages or blog entries.

4. Build your keyword into the URL or slug

Any text you enter in the address field that ends in.com,.ca, etc. is a URL. The second forward slash is known as the “slug.” Slugs and URL pathways have the same meaning and are frequently used interchangeably.

Your URL cannot be changed once you’ve selected a domain name. Slugs, however, can be modified or altered. Redirects should be added to your new pages if you are changing slugs. How to accomplish it was discussed above.

To make it apparent to both users and search engines what the page is about, it is important to incorporate your keyword into the slug of each page. Additionally, you should be cautious about putting keywords into your URL and slugs.

Take a URL like this:

https://kindahotsauce.shop/products/hot-sauce-habanero-hot-sauce-mild-sauce-150ml

And consider, instead, structuring it this way:

https://kindahotsauce.shop/products/hot-enough-habanero

Why? Such keyword stuffing hurts your search ranks. The days of search engine algorithms that favorably reward a term appearing several times in the URL string are long gone. Don’t ruin your chances of getting a click by filling your URLs with keywords or overusing keyword matching.

General rules of thumb:

  • Avoid hashes/the pound sign-in URLs. By using hyperlinks that, when clicked, take you to a subheading, the hash key enables you to direct website visitors to a certain spot on a page (like within the table of contents on this page).
  • Be wary of case sensitivity. Don’t capitalize any nouns in URLs or slugs. Although the majority of CMSs in use nowadays don’t care about the case, it’s still recommended to stick to lowercase.
  • Use hyphens to separate words. It is much easier to read “/collections/mens-short-with-pockets” than “/collections/mensshortswithpockets.” Spaces and underscores should be avoided as they render oddly in URLs as %20.

Refer to this Character Encoding Chart from Perishable Press for a complete list of safe characters to use in URLs.

4. Build your keyword into the meta title and description

You can tell consumers and search engines what your page is about and entice them to click on it from a SERP by using your meta title and description. Shopify automatically fills in the product/collection name and the product/category description in the title and meta description boxes, so you don’t have to worry about there being obvious mistakes with blank meta fields. It’s possible that the metadata isn’t explaining to visitors and search engines what your website is about or isn’t making it tempting to obtain a click if you haven’t modified them for each page.

Here’s how to prepare the meta title and description on your pages:

  • Write a page title with less than 55 characters. To aid search engines in indexing your website, find a way to incorporate your target phrase. However, also ensure that it is readable and not written in “caveman speak,” as search engines are capable of understanding the content of a page even when words are separated by stop words (the, if, and, a, etc.).
  • Write a meta description with a max of 145 characters. Make your product page or blog post appealing to the searcher by doing so here. It’s not necessary to use your keyword here, however, it can help it rank. Instead, pay attention to the client. Find out more about creating meta descriptions.

Note: With Ryte, you can see how your metadata appears on desktop, mobile, and other platforms.

shopify seo on proudct page serp preview

5. Build your keyword into your image naming system

By storing files with the same name as the keyword target (for example, habanero-hot-sauce.jpg), you may include your keyword in your image naming system. You can also use the keyword as the file’s alt text when you submit the picture to your store.

Use differentiators like habanero-hot-sauce-ingredients.jpg for a photo of the ingredient label and habanero-hot-sauce-example-dish.jpg for an action shot of a model applying sauce to food if you have many images being uploaded and are unsure of what to call your files.

You should carefully write your alt attributes, as we said earlier about optimizing photos. When a browser is unable to render an image correctly or for online accessibility, alt text is used. To help those with impaired vision understand what the image displays, it is best to convey what is in the image in straightforward terms. It’s wonderful if you write an accessible alt text attribute and organically incorporate the target keyword, however, it’s advised to favor this strategy above loading your alt text with keywords.

image file name and alt text for seo example

6. Build rich snippets with product details and user-generated content

Rich snippets are search results that also offer specific details about a variety of products within a category, such as their prices, availability, and special characteristics. Customer reviews and ratings are the sources of user-generated content. They are helpful for quickly learning more about a certain product without having to go there from the search results page.

rich snippet seo example

According to Search Engine Land, rich snippets may improve the number of visitors who click on your products from SERPs by up to 30%. A substantial increase in free clicks to your product page would result from a 30% rise in organic clicks as opposed to a 30% increase in the budget for paid search advertisements. Technical SEO undoubtedly includes the creation of rich snippets and schema, but the payoff may sometimes outweigh the learning curve.

Know that Shopify already incorporates structured data and rich snippet capability for your product pages in all of its free themes before you decide to prioritize rich snippets. To display the product information in SERPs, you no longer need to bother about adding structured data markup. Only if Google decides to display it will price and availability (in stock/out of stock) be automatically taken and added to a SERP.

Before you begin, confirm with your theme developer if the one you’re using or the one you had custom designed supports structured data and rich snippets. You have a few choices if it lacks product schema structured data capabilities:

These need an app or unique code to display user-created content and star ratings in SERPs. Before you act on this, though, consider the following:

  • What’s the average star rating?
  • Do you have a product reviews app?
  • Are your reviews positive or negative?

If you don’t already use one, Shopify offers a free app that supports review snippets. Once visitors submit their reviews, the markup is added to your website, and when Google crawls the page again and reads the markup data, the reviews will show up. There are many product review applications available in the app store, but you must confirm that they accept schema markup.

It’s okay if rich snippets don’t display right away in search results; this is because they can take some time to emerge. Make sure there are no display issues by using the Google Structured Data Testing Tool to look for mistakes.

An important takeaway for on-page SEO

Making the content readable for readers, not only search engines, is the goal of creating an SEO-friendly page. By using headers, bullet points, or numbered lists, the layout may guide readers to the information they need. By making it easier for readers to get there and quickly discover what they want, the goal is to lower friction in their reading experience. You might have heard that a page’s length affects its ranking. I’ve always believed that if an article or page is enormous, it is because the subject warrants it and requires a 101 or beginners’ guide. Increasing the word count of an article to meet a measure that guarantees a ranking page is rarely a wise idea.

Off-page SEO

Off-page SEO can encompass customer service and social media presence as well as reputation management, but its main focus is on constructing backlinks or links that point to your website. Your pages will rank higher if you have more backlinks of high caliber and relevance. Based on where clicks travel in the earlier graphic above, you are aware of the significance of having sites that are highly ranked in search engines.

You may create links to your website using either active efforts or passive efforts.

Active link building

When you create a plan and strategy for the pages you want to generate links from—along with an understanding of why you want to build them—and then carry out that plan, you are engaging in active link building. Active link building often takes a lot of time because it’s a difficult method to master. Your proposal must be captivating since journalists, influencers, and other authors are constantly receiving pitches.

When requesting another website, keep the following guidelines in mind:

  • Put what’s in it for them upfront in your pitch. Yes, you are asking for something (a link), but what are they getting in return? Are they connecting to an outdated page or one that no longer exists, or are they omitting a crucial item from their list? Give them a reason to take your suggestion into account.
  • Don’t request links from people who are your competitors. Although it may seem obvious, many link requests are made by individuals who seek coverage of the same product and subject since there is already a resource in place. For instance, it would be best not to waste time contacting someone if you sell athletic gym shorts and come across a buyer’s guide on what to look for when purchasing gym shorts written by a company that also sells shorts targeted at your niche.

Now that you understand the fundamentals, let’s look at some practical link-building strategies:

1. Foundational links

  • Cost: $0
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀

Connections from social media accounts, regional business directories, and specialty directories are considered foundational links. If you haven’t already, create an account on a social networking site like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. Whether or whether you have a physical storefront, it’s also advised that you set up a Google My Business page since this may boost your local SEO and bring in more local clients. Although there aren’t many SEO advantages here, it’s simple to get things up and your brand will be more easily seen across media.

2. Pitch gift guides

  • Cost: $0
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀

Gift guides are lists of suggested products or presents, usually themed around a special occasion (like Christmas) or someone (like your dad). If you’ve ever searched Google for present suggestions, you’ve probably found several gift guides.

Including your product in the correct gift, guides may boost website traffic and sales. However, inclusion takes work and does not happen by accident in these manuals. Business owners frequently campaign for the inclusion of their items. You must get in touch with gift guide publishers and request to be mentioned for your products. There is no assurance, but you could be selected if your product fits the bill.

3. PR campaigns

  • Cost: $0
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀🚀

A press release campaign often includes sending a release to the media to be picked up by local, regional, national, or business press. Press releases have a decent potential of driving people to your website and providing a high-quality, reliable link to it, both of which are advantageous from the perspective of SEO.

Consider your own publicity as an alternative to using a PR firm. Put it out there if you have a compelling tale to tell or a fascinating product that others will want to write about. Make contact with bloggers and reporters who write about companies similar to yours and let them know what you’re up to.

Even though the majority of writers receive a tonne of requests, they are constantly looking for interesting stories to write. To increase your success rate, make sure you target the proper media (don’t ask a tech journalist to write about your clothes business, for example) and provide them with an engaging narrative.

4. Skyscraper technique

  • Cost: $99/month for an SEO tool
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪💪💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀🚀

The skyscraper strategy might assist you in constructing links if your brand uses content marketing or is contemplating it. It comes from internet marketer Brian Dean, who explains it as a technique where you locate link-worthy material created by your rivals, improve it, and then approach the appropriate individuals to obtain their links.

You’ll need an SEO tool to identify connections to your rivals’ websites and a tool to assist you to find emails of individuals to contact to execute this method effectively. Remember, it takes time and effort to develop an outreach campaign and spend in producing high-quality content, both of which are necessary.

5. Guest blog

  • Cost: $0
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀🚀

If you write on your own blog to increase traffic, you are aware that it takes time to start seeing results. While building your own following, guest writing provides you with a method to reach out to someone else’s audience. It not only encourages visitors to return to your website, but the links back will also benefit SEO.

Find and connect with other blogs, journals, or websites in your field that have the kind of readers you wish to attract. Suggest a guest post your readers will adore. Make sure the subject you write about has anything to do with your company otherwise it won’t generate any traffic.

6. Broken link building

  • Cost: $99/month for an SEO tool
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀🚀🚀

Finding pages that connect to websites that have a page removed, creating material that is identical to the dead content, and telling others to link to your content instead of the resource that was removed are all examples of broken link building. This works because connecting to sites that don’t exist is terrible for a website’s SEO.

You’ll need an outreach tool that helps you obtain email addresses and an SEO tool that enables you to crawl sites and detect broken links to properly use this strategy. Find out what was previously on that broken page as well. Fortunately, the Wayback Machine, a free archive of online sites from various eras, allows you to accomplish this.

Here’s the process you can expect to follow if you use this tactic

  • Choose a website that exists within your niche and creates material you would be happy to connect to (e.g., If I owned a business that sold skin treatments and essential oils, I would look for a website within the aromatherapy space, which could be a competitor business or a blogger).
  • Use your SEO tool to find any 404 links, pages where you know you have a product or collection, pages with the most referring domains or links, etc. Find out what was on that page using the Wayback Machine, and then see if you can come up with content that covers the same topics. Note: It’s illegal to copy text from a blank page since doing so violates the copyright.
  • Use your outreach email tool to find the content manager Then get in touch to inform them about the broken link, how it affects their reading experience and SEO, and that you have a page dedicated to this subject. Ideally, they would replace a broken link with a link to your company in the end.

You can read more about broken link building on ahref’s blog.

7. Unlinked mentions

  • Cost: From $0
  • SEO expertise (out of 5🕵️‍♀️): 🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️🕵️‍♀️
  • Effort (out of 5 💪): 💪💪
  • Impact (out of 5 🚀): 🚀🚀

Unlinked mentions occur when there is no link back to your website when your business is discussed on another website. A post that offers comfortable loungewear items, for instance, can include your business as an example while omitting a link to your webpage. If your site is referenced using tools like Google Alerts or other SEO tools that provide this capability, like ahrefs, you can receive a notification in your mailbox. Once you decide that obtaining a link from this website is worthwhile, get in touch with the author or content manager and request that a link be given credit to your listed business.

Passive link building

Even though passive link building entails routine tasks or business, as usual, it might eventually double your SEO efforts even if it isn’t a conventional SEO-enhancing activity.

  • Create an amazing product or service. Possessing a fantastic product or service that is worth talking about is the simplest technique to attract customers online to talk about your business. Because you’re doing something unique that makes you stand out, people will start recommending your business to their friends and family at this point. It takes some time for this to get traction, but it is the greatest approach to growing a business and a wise SEO strategy.
  • Provide amazing customer service. Excellent customer service is mentioned. Also mentioned is the equally bad customer service. However, ordinary customer service is sometimes overlooked. Remember the time United Airlines hauled a person off one of their planes? While horrible customer service can get you written about, which is technically helpful for SEO, it’s not ideal to be renowned for providing awful customer service. So concentrate on giving fantastic service. You just need to perform the simple things really well and look for opportunities to please others. You don’t need to go above and beyond. Keep in mind the adage, “People forget what you say, but they remember what you did.”
  • Responsive on social media. Being responsive on social media doesn’t mean getting into every conversation or partaking in the Twitter chitchat between competing firms. It’s important to respond to clients as soon as they contact you for assistance. Once you master the fundamentals, you may think about liking or commenting on Instagram pictures or Stories that your ardent customers tag your products in.
  • Build connections with social media and online influencers. Although it’s commonly thought of as networking, a more accurate description is “seeking to make acquaintances online.” Send the article or product that you know the influencer or ardent writer in the industry would adore, or offer a thoughtful remark on their post if you are aware of their interests. It all boils down to earning their trust. When you have attention, you have earned trust. Once you have someone’s attention, you are enrolled and have the go-ahead to express your thoughts or point of view.
  • Converse on forums and discussion boards and comment on blogs. You may gain a positive reputation and eventually clients by participating in online communities where your ideal audience congregates, such as Reddit, Quora, or specialist industry forums. Use these areas to promote meaningful interactions, insightful responses, and the creation of excitement and passion. However, be cautious about over-promoting your business. Only attempt to do so if the commenter is asking for advice or if your product can help them with the issue they’ve mentioned.

Build an SEO plan to scale your store’s growth

You want your business to be among the top search results when people look up items in your category. However, they will only be able to see your page in the results if you take the time to study the guidelines that search engines follow and then follow those guidelines while creating the structure and content of your website.

Beginning to work on SEO for your shop might feel intimidating, but if you get the hang of it and fix any problems, it can be as easy as making adjustments to pages to improve their rankings and discovering new keywords to develop pages for. Slowly but surely, you’ll start to notice movement, and SEO will be an excellent flywheel for bringing in new clients for your business.

Frequently asked questions on SEO Marketing

What does SEO stand for in marketing?

The term “search engine optimization” or SEO. Sending signals to search engines that your sites are worthy of showing up in Google’s search results is a measured, repeatable procedure.

What is SEM?

In search engine marketing, often known as SEM, you provide pertinent, high-quality content for your website to draw in your target clients through natural search results (non-paid). By building new pages or improving existing ones, you may improve traffic.

What is SEO in digital marketing?

The goal of SEO in digital or online marketing is to enhance organic traffic to your website through page optimization for improved search engine ranks, keyword-targeted content creation, and site optimization for search engine crawlers.

How do I start SEO?

1. Find a keyword that has a good search volume
2. Understand the search intent of your keyword
3. Write your page using your keyword research data
4. Optimize your page meta title and description
5. Publish your page
6. Build links to your page or website

What is the difference between SEO and SEM?

The key distinction between search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM) is that while SEO concentrates on growing organic traffic, SEM also employs paid advertising to grow traffic.

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