how to do SEO on Shopify

How to do SEO on Shopify

Last updated: May 27, 2022

Did you know... only 6.05% of Shopify traffic comes from paid sources...

That means traffic to Shopify stores is almost entirely organic, emphasizing the importance of maintaining a strong SEO strategy to help attract customers to your online store. The higher your Shopify website's position in search engine rankings, the more visitors your store will get, resulting in increased sales numbers. So, how do you improve SEO on Shopify?

Shopify comes with a number of SEO-friendly features out of the box, but there's still a lot more you can do to improve your search engine rankings. While keywords are important in search engine optimization, getting your site to rank higher requires more than merely sprinkling keywords aimlessly throughout your website. In this Charle guide, we will go through everything you need to know about how to do SEO on Shopify effectively to maximize results.

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optimize your Shopify Site’s Hierarchy

The first stage in our guide on how to do SEO on Shopify is optimizing your Shopify site’s structure. The organisation of your content on your page is critical to SEO success. When customers can discover what they're searching for quickly and simply, they're more likely to stay on your site longer and view more pages, metrics which can directly benefit your search engine rankings. It’s recommended to make your website as user-friendly as possible to make the user journey more efficient.

Simplifying your site’s hierarchical structure by minimising categories and subcategories means that search engines can crawl and rank your products and pages more easily with a simpler site layout/sitemap. Organising your content is easy with Shopify. One of the most effective site structures is simply: Homepage -> Category Pages -> Product Pages. Or if you have a multitude of products in different categories then add sub-categories into your category pages. Generally, the fewer clicks it takes for a customer to reach checkout results in higher conversion rates, which is a great addition to strengthened search engine optimization.

Keyword Research

Next in our guide on how to do SEO on Shopify is keyword research. Keyword research is the basis of SEO success, and no Shopify SEO guide would be complete without it. But where do you go for the best keywords to drive traffic to your store? Put yourself in the shoes of your customers and do some searches. What would you type into Google to find the things you sell? Keyword research will help you optimize your pages for the search terms that your shoppers are actually using. This attracts ready-to-buy customers and informs Google about your business.

Using tools such as Semrush be invaluable to dive into keyword research analytics, such as search volumes, keyword difficulty, and competitors who are ranking on keywords that you’re thinking of targeting. Generally, the more niche the keyword the better as these are not diluted by the competition, making it difficult to rank. Of course, being too niche can also be a problem if search volumes are lacking, so it’s good to take time in finding the right balance so that you know how to do SEO on Shopify effectively. Other tools such as Google Search Console are great to track the progress of your search engine optimization in realtime and, identifying strong areas of your site as well as helping flag any issues on the way.

Add keywords to your Shopify website

Now that you’ve identified which keywords you want to target, the next step in our guide on how to do SEO on Shopify is to use your chosen keywords to strategically optimize your store's pages. Start with your most important pages. Your homepage, top-selling product pages and any other pages within your site that generate the most engagement are a good place to start. Be sure to use your keywords in titles, headings, and in the body of your text whenever possible. It’s important not to ‘spam’ your keyword too many times throughout your pages though, as this can sometimes signal to search engines that your content is spam more than something truly relevant or that adds value to visitors of your website.

optimize Titles, Meta descriptions, Alt tags and URLs

Next on our guide on how to do SEO on Shopify is optimizing titles, meta descriptions, image alt tags and urls. These areas are just as important as including keywords within your product collections and pages etc. so make sure to not miss any of these more technical sections.

Titles should always include the keywords you’re looking to target for your Shopify store and should be relevant to the page’s content. Meta descriptions should be informative and include your targeted keywords. Meta descriptions shouldn’t be too long, generally around 155-160 characters is the sweet spot. All images should have appropriate alt tags/alt text which describe what the image is, and URLs should be specific to each individual page of your website.

Rank Higher With Content Marketing

Next in our guide on how to do SEO on Shopify is content marketing. People visit your website for the content. As the owner of an Shopify site, you may be tempted to compromise on content or believe that product descriptions are sufficient by themselves. Take the effort to generate fresh material that enhances your overall user experience, and you'll have a lot more success in your search engine optimization strategy.

It may be difficult, but blogging increases your ranking potential while also expanding opportunities for clients to find you. The more pages you have and the more content-rich your website, the more likely you are to appear in search results. When writing content, target users who aren't quite ready to buy and nurture them towards a sale by providing them with useful and engaging content.

Your content is an opportunity to introduce customers and potential customers to your brand in a non-commercial approach. Perhaps how-to guides, or demonstrations of your products can help customers better understand and perceive your market offering so that they feel more confident in making the purchasing decision. Content marketing is not only an effective way of how to do SEO on Shopify, but it’s also one of the simplest strategies to gain more backlinks and rank for more keywords which we will go onto next.

Incorporate links

Search engines utilize backlinks to judge how well your site is regarded by the general public. Backlinks in simple terms are links added to external websites that bring customers to your website once clicked. Consider it SEO's version of word of mouth. It's an off-page search engine optimization technique that focuses on establishing your credibility and reliability.

How do you persuade people to link to your store? A lot of backlinks are added automatically over time as you grow your brand, through mentions in brand directories, blog posts and other sources of media. A good way to build relevant backlinks is to reaching out to brands and influencers in the industry you operate in and collaborate on content with them.

Whilst we’re on the subject of links, it wouldn’t be a good guide on how to do SEO on Shopify without mentioning broken links. Whether they’re broken links within your website, or backlinks that direct customers to an incorrect page, having broken links can harm your SEO positioning. It involves some detective work to identify any broken links, but it’s worth the effort!

Improve the User Experience

Coming up next on our guide on how to do SEO on Shopify is improving the user experience. Strategies such as boosting your site speed, using a responsive design and incorporating engaging media are ways to both improve user experience, and also help you rank higher in search results.

Improving your Shopify site’s speed will meant that visitors are likely to stay on your website longer, a metric which will help with SEO strength. You can speed up your Shopify store by using a mobile-friendly, fast-loading and responsive theme with compressed images. It’s also a good idea to remove any unused programs or sliders that don’t add value to the overall user experience. You can learn more in our detailed guide on how to improve Shopify site speed.

While having assets that have a large file size can reduce Shopify site speed, incorporating engaging media and videos which keep the user on the website longer can help strengthen your SEO positioning. Use video, 360-degree pictures, and customer feedback to create dynamic and compelling product pages. Customers will spend more time on your site if you use these attractive materials but make sure your media is relevant. You may improve your search engine optimization by cross-publishing your video material on YouTube. Google will consider your product pages more relevant the more engaging they are, and average session duration will be higher. As a result, your store will appear higher in the search results.


Voilà, our in-depth guide on how to do SEO on Shopify. Be sure to give your website a thorough run-through of all the above to make sure you’re not missing anything out, your search engine ranking could be hindered by the smallest things you might have overlooked! We hope this guide has helped you in one way or another. If you require an expert ecommerce SEO agency to truly power your positioning, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Charle.
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