Shopify SEO Guide: Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide to Rank #1 on Google (2019)

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 era, but in today’s age of the Internet, it takes more than building a beautiful store to draw shoppers.

Yes, it’s important to choose the eCommerce platform that works for you, but what happens after you have the site built and are open for business? How are you going to reach potential customers? How are you going to get them to shop with you instead of your competitor?

Search engine rankings play a huge part in how easily shoppers are able to find your store. The higher you rank in search engine results, the more traffic to your eCommerce store is going to have which will ultimately results in higher eCommerce sales. This naturally leads to increased sales.

So, how do you rank higher?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Does Shopify Have Good SEO?

Shopify comes with several SEO-friendly features right out the box, but there’s so much more you can do to climb up in the rankings. While SEO relies on keywords, it takes more than just sprinkling some keywords into your site’s content to get your site ranking higher.

Shopify SEO Guide: Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1. Optimize Your Shopify Site Structure

The way your content is organized on your page is very important to SEO success.

When shoppers are able to quickly and easily find the things they’re looking for, they tend to spend more time on your site and view more pages, which can help your search engine rankings.

How can you make your site easier to navigate?

Simplify. Don’t go overboard with categories and subcategories.

A simpler site structure makes it easier for search engines to crawl your site and rank your products.

An SEO-friendly, simple site structure might look like this:

site_structure

You can see from the diagram that your products are only a couple of clicks away from your homepage, making it easy and fast for shoppers to find what they’re looking for and easy for search engines to crawl the site.

Organizing your content is easy with Shopify, using one of these structures:

Homepage » Category Pages » Product Pages

Homepage » Category Pages » Sub-Category Page » Product Pages

Remember, your site should be built for customers first.

Step 2. Improve the User Experience

Now let’s take a look at a few ways you can improve the user experience on your site, which will also help you to rank higher in search results.

Boost Your Site Speed
Site speed is all about accessibility. When your site is easy to navigate and everything moves quickly, visitors have no cause for frustration. This means that they’re likely to spend more time on your site.

To make your Shopify store faster, you can:

  • use a fast, mobile-friendly theme
  • use smaller, optimized images
  • remove any apps you’re not using
  • avoid using sliders

Step 3. Research the Right Target Keywords

No Shopify SEO guide would be complete without tips on keyword research – the foundation of SEO success.

But how do you find the right keywords to get traffic to your shop?

The best way to start isn’t with fancy tools, but just to make a list of at least five main topics that your customers care about and that are closely related to your product.

Put yourself in your customers’ shoes. What search terms would YOU use to find the products you sell?

You can also find inspiration for these topics from places like:

  • your own buyer personas
  • searching forums and subreddits related to your products
  • social media hashtags related to your products
  • looking at the titles, meta descriptions, and image alt-text used on competitors’ sites

Step 4. Optimize Your Shopify Products Pages

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At this point, you should have a list of keywords and a logical site structure. The next step is to optimize your store’s pages using your keywords.

Start with your top pages first. These will likely be your homepage, main product collections, and top-selling product pages. We’re talking about the pages that are the most profitable and have the best conversions.

If you’re opening a brand new store, you should still optimize your homepage. There are a couple of easy ways to choose which other pages to optimize:

  • Pages for the products that generated the most buzz building up to the launch of your store
  • Pages for the products related to the most searched keywords you found (> 10K searches/month)

Step 5. Build Links to Your Store

link-building-for-seo

Backlinks are used by search engines to determine how the wider community values your site. Think of it as word of mouth for SEO. It’s an off-page optimization strategy that relies on establishing your credibility and trustworthiness.

How can you get links to your store? Here are a few tips:

Supplier/Manufacturer Links
If you sell products made or supplied by established companies, they may have a policy that authorized retailers can get a link. Email them to ask if they will link to your store.

Industry/Influencer Voices
Reach out to industry leaders and influencers for interviews to generate both links and content.

Mentions
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.

Broken Links
This requires a little bit of detective work to search out for broken links for products and services similar to those you offer. Once you find one, reach out to the owner of the site displaying the broken link to have them a link to your site instead. Since broken links can hurt SEO this is a mutually beneficial solution for both parties; they get to repair a broken link and you get a backlink.

Step 6. Rank Higher With Content Marketing

Now that you have everything else in place, let’s talk about content marketing.

Content is the reason people come to your site. As an eCommerce site owner, you may be tempted to skimp on the content or may consider product descriptions enough content.

Trust us, you’ll have so much more success 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 need to be. Make a list of all the things your customers ask you or anything you think customers may want answers to. 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 tools and Shopify apps that you can use to boost your site’s rankings.

Plugin SEO

  • Multilingual
  • Constantly updated as search engines change
  • Automatically checks your shop and alerts you of problems via email

Smart SEO

  • Cut down on 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 enhance search results

SEO Image Optimizer

  • Increase traffic from Google image search
  • Quickly and easily optimize images
  • No coding knowledge necessary

Yoast

  • Check all pages and posts for SEO strength and get recommendations for improvement
  • Edit multiple pages with a single click
  • Always updated for Google’s algorithm

SEMRush

  • See competitors’ top keywords
  • Find out which keywords your competitors rank for
  • See which pages on competitors’ sites are getting the most organic search traffic

That’s it! By working through each of the 7 steps in this Shopify SEO guide, you’ll be climbing up the search results rankings in no time. Want to cash in on those rankings?

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