It’s easy to assume that the success of your Shopify online store is dependent on the quality of your products, and that’s definitely a big factor. Brands build a reputation by selling quality products that people love, and the power of word of mouth and brand recognition will play a large role in the success of your online store. Optimization, however, is also an extremely important component in your store’s success.
The nature of Shopify stores means that optimizing your online store is absolutely critical. To attract new customers and to help people find your products, you must present your items on a page that is recognizable by search engine algorithms while appealing to your customers at the same time.
Creating a page that appeals to customers while satisfying the ever-increasing demands of Google search engine algorithms is an art – and while it’s something you can achieve with some work on your end, it’s also something that experienced web developers and SEO strategists are often better equipped to help you with.
Optimizing your Shopify page can significantly boost sales, spread the word about your brand and message, and increase the number of people visiting your site and connected social media platforms.
Shopify itself reports how businesses using the Shopify platform boosted revenue several times over by optimizing their pages. After migrating to Shopify, Backjoy saw a 102% increase in sales, thanks to organic traffic directed to their page from search engines. That translated into a 71% revenue increase.
The brand also cites the success story of TULA, a company that moved to Shopify Plus and saw a 95% organic search traffic increase and a 297% increase in transactions.
“Overall, look at the structure of your top competitor’s pages — the ones that rank in the top three on Google — and structure your pages to be even better,” advises Natalie Luneva, Marketing Director at the Chicago-based boutique agency, Comrade Digital Marketing.
“Check out the sections your competitors have that you don’t. Do they have Q&A sections that you don’t have? Are their product descriptions much longer or more detailed than yours are? Are there product reviews that are being automatically added? Google loves those and considers them ‘new, fresh content.’ Google doesn’t decide which pages rank higher than others in a vacuum. Your product pages need to be better than your competitor’s.”
Optimize your page and you’ll boost your brand, your awareness, and your sales. Let’s look at how you can achieve that.
Your page determines a lot about your page. It identifies the page to search engines and your customers, indicating what can be found on the page. It’s the first thing to think about when setting up a new product page, and it should be simple and succinct.
It needs to be accurate, too. If your page is selling custom hats, then the title should reference custom hats. This ensures that potential customers are greeted with exactly the kinds of products they expect after clicking on a Google search result, which will include the text you use in your page title.
Google search engine algorithms will also compare the content of your page with the page title. The more accurate the better, and the greater chance you have of enjoying good SEO rankings. Beyond accuracy, however, there are a couple of other things to consider to optimize the title as best you can. Do you want to optimize you homepage on Shopify? Check-in relevant article!
Keep your title succinct, to the point, and descriptive. You’ll need to keep it under 70 characters to ensure it doesn’t get cut off on search listings, but that shouldn’t be a problem – shorter titles are better for readers anyway. The meta description is where you add the detail.
Remember that this is the text that forms the link on search engines, so make sure it’s clear, and don’t over-promise. If people click the link expecting one thing and get another…you can bet they’ll leave the site!
This is also a great opportunity to use keywords. Use the same keywords you use throughout your site, strengthening your online presence and connectivity to the keywords that relate closely to your brand.
Use the same keywords that appear at the beginning of the page or in your descriptions.
Remember, you can’t just write for Google! The search engine algorithm is important, but unlike the early days of search, there’s much more to SEO success than just filling your page and descriptions with keywords. Use them, but use them in a natural way and one that doesn’t interrupt the user experience.
You can create enticing titles that portray the message you need to get across and do so in a way that doesn’t compromise your search engine ranking. Make it clear and readable, use proper grammar, and include a keyword. That’s your key to success. Already have a Shopify store? Check our Shopify Checklist 2020.
You might already know description tags by the name “meta description.” This is an element of your page that is used to describe what users should expect, and you must optimize it as best you can. Let’s take a look at exactly what the description tag is, and what search engines expect you to do with it.
The description tag is a brief snippet of text that explains what the page is about. This is the text that appears underneath the title in a search engine result. It needs to be around 160 characters to ensure your message isn’t cut off. Remember, the key here is to ensure that people can read the entire snippet and understand precisely what is on the page they’re about to click.
If users don’t understand what you’re saying, or if the description is too long, they have two options: either they click and see what’s on the page anyway, or they move on to the next entry that is more clearly defined.
The meta description is another perfect place to use keywords. These are the words that potential customers are most likely to search on Google when they’re looking for a website like yours, or the products you sell. Use keywords in your meta description and you’re more likely to attract the attention of somebody who searched for those words if they see them in your meta description.
Because you can’t use every relevant keyword, though, you must choose carefully.
It’s easy to write with Google in mind, assuming that the only thing that matters is search ranking – but there’s more to it than that. First of all, if you pack your meta description with keywords it would immediately put off potential customers who won’t be met with something readable, but a list of keywords that doesn’t mean much…or inspire them to click.
The thing is, though, you wouldn’t even get to the top of the search rankings by doing that anyway. Google’s algorithms favor websites that cater for users and visitors, and not for old algorithms that are less sophisticated than they are now.
So, always write with customers in mind. Include a keyword, keep it succinct, and tell people why they should click your link. When combined with an effective, wife-ranging SEO strategy (that experts can develop for you!) it will ensure you get solid search ranking results and drive more organic traffic to your site.
A good description encourages people to click and doesn’t overpromise
Find a balance between posting high-quality images and avoiding large files. Images that are too small look bad and don’t display properly on your page, but images that are too large take too long to load. This is bad for the user experience, but if it slows down your load time too much it can also hurt your SEO rankings.
Remember, Google prefers websites that offer a convenient user experience.
One way to optimize your images is to ensure they are accompanied by the right text. This is the text that search engines use to read the images you post, and sometimes it’s the text that users can see. The alt text on your image describes what can be seen, helping search engines understand what is on your page, and sometimes telling people viewing your page with accessibility features what is being displayed too.
Shopify lets you change your alt text by going to the admin page, then “Products,” then “All Products,” and then letting you choose the image. Click “Alt” on the image, enter descriptive text for the image, and then click “Done.” And there you go!
Search engines know what images are displayed on your page, and this helps boost your search engine ranking for keywords included in the text.
Your Shopify store has an address, known as the URL. This is what people type into the URL bar to find your store, and when they click on a new page that URL changes too. It might not seem all that important, but writing a URL that is clear, concise, and optimized ensures that search engines can easily identify your pages.
Your URL should include the same words and keywords as the title on that page, and which appear throughout the text on your page. That way, the search engine knows that the page directly relates to the words in the URL. This consistency boosts your search engine rankings.
Your URL should also be succinct and to the point. Take the main focus of the page and use that to build a URL that isn’t too long, and which users may even want to remember. Separate words by hyphens or dashes, too, and you can keep them neat and easy to read.
OK, let’s take a look at a few final things you should consider to get your website right up there among the big players on Google.
A data scheme, or scheme markup, is data you put on your website to tell search engines what data means and not just what it says. It displays specific information in meta descriptions that are specific to the words that were searched. For instance, your data scheme might give people information about events or sales that are taking place, and on which dates they take place – and do so in the meta description under the title link.
Testimonials aren’t just great for showing your customers why your brand is so great and your products great quality…they’re also fantastic for SEO.
Implementing a testimonials page on your website is easy, and gives you a chance to share the results of projects you’ve worked on in the past or comments from happy customers.
You can optimize these pages by implementing relevant keywords, in the same way, you do with your images and product pages. It’s just one more page that cements your online presence and connection to specific keywords, and which shows Google you have a strong reputation.
It’ll boost your rankings and potentially increase conversions, too. Remember to use all the tools we’ve described in this piece, to optimize your images and titles, and keep your meta descriptions succinct and to the point.
Adding featured products to your page also helps for two reasons. One, it encourages people to click through to different pages of your website and experience more of your products. Two, it establishes backlinks in your site – a well-known way of showing Google that your site is legitimate. A site that backlinks to its own pages is better than a site that outsources information and redirects visitors elsewhere.
Established featured products on your home page, link to different pages on your site and utilize all the keyword knowledge you’ve developed so far and your search engine ranking can soar!
Catapult Revenue understands eCommerce SEO inside-out. Our expert web designers and marketing strategists can build your website from scratch, or optimize your existing website to create a brand identity that captures the imagination of every single visitor. We have a successful track record implementing best in class SEO strategies that truly work and achieve long-lasting results.
For an SEO assessment or to ask how you can optimize your Shopify or other eCommerce platform’s product pages, get in touch today. We’d love to speak with you. Catapult Revenue is an eCommerce SEO company that can drive your traffic!
Yuriy oversees Catapult Revenue’s marketing team, ensuring all SEO, PPC, analytics and development work is executed with precision.
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