Purpose: This checklist is designed to help Shopify store owners improve their website's search engine ranking. It covers the latest SEO best practices, including choosing the right keywords, optimizing your product pages, and building backlinks. Scope: This checklist is comprehensive and covers all aspects of SEO for Shopify stores. It is suitable for Shopify store owners of all levels of experience. By adhering to the tasks outlined in this checklist, you can enhance your Shopify store's SEO and boost the traffic volume to your website.
Enable clean URLs in your Shopify store settings
Clean URLs are user-friendly and can improve search engine visibility. In addition, they remove unnecessary parameters and make your website URLs more readable.
Canonical URLs help search engines understand the preferred version of a webpage when multiple versions are available. This prevents identical content penalties.
Implement structured data markup to enhance search engine visibility and enable rich snippets
Structured data offers supplementary information to search engines, allowing them to showcase enhanced excerpts in search outcomes like star ratings, evaluations, and product details.
Generate an XML sitemap and proceed with its submission to search engines using Google Search Console
An XML sitemap functions as a file that compiles a comprehensive list of all the pages present on your website, helping search engines discover and crawl them more efficiently.
Ensure your website is mobile-friendly and responsive
In light of the growing utilization of mobile devices, having a website tailored for seamless mobile accessibility is paramount. It improves user experience and can positively impact your search engine rankings.
Employ resources such as Google Keyword Planner, Semrush, or Ahrefs to identify relevant keywords related to your products or services
These tools provide insights into search volume, competition, and related keywords, helping you discover the most valuable keywords to target.
Target long-tail keywords that have lower competition and higher conversion potential
Long-tail keywords refer to particular phrases that typically encounter lower competition levels. As a result, they can drive targeted traffic and have a higher likelihood of conversion.
Prioritize keywords with high search volume and buyer intent
Focus on keywords with significant search volume and indicate strong buyer intent, as they are more likely to generate sales or leads.
Optimize your page titles, meta descriptions, and URL structures with relevant keywords
Incorporate your target keywords seamlessly into these elements to enhance their visibility to search engines and attract clicks from users in a natural manner.
Use headings (H1, H2, etc.) to structure your content and include keywords naturally
Headings help organize your content and provide hierarchy. In addition, including keywords in headings can improve keyword relevance for search engines.
Optimize image alt tags with descriptive text that includes keywords
Alt tags provide alternative text for images, helping search engines understand their content. In addition, including relevant keywords in alt tags can improve keyword relevance and accessibility.
Ensure your website's pages load quickly by optimizing the website code and image sizes and leveraging caching techniques
Pages that load quickly offer an improved user experience and can positively influence search engine rankings. Optimizing code, compressing images, and leveraging caching techniques can improve page speed.
Organize your products into relevant categories and subcategories
A well-structured website with logical categories facilitates smoother navigation for users and search engines to find products.
Implement breadcrumbs to improve user experience and search engine crawling
Breadcrumbs provide a navigational trail for users, indicating their location within the website's hierarchy. They also help search engines understand the website's structure.
Optimize your website's design for ease of use, intuitive navigation, and clear calls to action
A user-friendly design improves the overall experience and encourages visitors to take desired steps.
Enhance and sustain a high website loading speed by compressing images, using browser caching, and leveraging a content delivery network (CDN)
Fast-loading websites are crucial for user satisfaction and can positively impact search engine rankings.
Enable a search bar to facilitate product discovery and improve the user experience
A search bar lets users find specific products quickly and comfortably on your website.
Develop a link-building strategy to acquire high-quality backlinks from reputable websites
Acquiring backlinks from reputable websites can enhance your website's authority and boost its rankings in search engines. Therefore, emphasize cultivating relationships and crafting valuable content that naturally entices the acquisition of backlinks.
Contact relevant influencers, bloggers, and industry publications for guest posting opportunities or product reviews
Collaborating with influencers and industry experts can help increase your brand's visibility and generate quality backlinks.
Utilize social media platforms as a valuable tool to promote your content and naturally attract organic backlinks
Sharing your content on social media can expose it to a broader audience and increase the likelihood of others linking to it.
Create high-quality, valuable content that aligns with your target audience's needs and interests
Content that delivers value to your audience has the potential to attract organic traffic, encourage social sharing, and generate valuable backlinks.
Ensure that you steer clear of duplicate content and meta tags to maintain the integrity and effectiveness of your website's SEO. To maintain optimal SEO practices, it is crucial to avoid any duplication of tags and content within your store. In cases where you need to create multiple product or landing pages with similar content, consider implementing canonical links. This lets you inform Google about the primary page that should be prioritized in search results. Alternatively, you can utilize the "no index" directive to exclude duplicate pages from search engine indexing, effectively hiding them. Shopify SEO apps can assist in identifying duplicate content and tags in your store. External services like Siteliner or SEO Analyzer also offer free scanning capabilities to detect duplicate tags, low word counts, missing elements, and other errors in your store's content.
Internal linking is a powerful but often underrated technique that can significantly impact your store's rankings. Incorporate internal links within your product descriptions, FAQs, About Us page, and blog posts. Take inspiration from Asos, which effectively uses internal linking in their product descriptions by linking to relevant categories or collections such as "shorts" and brand categories. In addition to text links, consider incorporating images and sections like relevant products, or products in the same category, on your product pages to enhance internal linking efforts further.
It is a common mistake for many Shopify store owners to deactivate sold-out products by switching them to draft or unpublishing them from the online store channel. However, this approach can lead to 404 not found errors, which is not favored by Google. Therefore, to handle sold-out products effectively, it is recommended to keep them active but push them to the bottom of your store collection. Unfortunately, this functionality is unavailable natively on Shopify, but you can utilize apps like Nada to assist you.
Publish blog posts, tutorials, guides, and videos about your products or industry
Diversify your content formats to cater to different audience preferences and improve your website's visibility.
Ensure that your website includes accurate, relevant information about your business
Ensure that your website includes accurate and consistent relevant details regarding your business, encompassing the business name, physical address, and phone number (NAP), and maintain consistency across different directories. Consistent NAP information helps search engines associate your business with a specific location and improve local search visibility.
Encourage and respond to customer reviews promptly
Positive customer reviews can boost your local search rankings and attract more customers. In addition, responding to reviews shows engagement and improves customer trust.
Apply Google Analytics and Google Search Console to monitor your website's performance, traffic sources, and keyword rankings
Generate an XML sitemap and proceed with its submission to search engines using Google Search Console. An XML sitemap functions as a file that compiles a comprehensive list of all the pages present on your website, helping search engines discover and crawl them more efficiently. These tools provide valuable insights into your website's performance and help you track the effectiveness of your SEO efforts.
Establish conversion tracking to accurately measure the efficacy of your SEO endeavors and gauge their impact on desired actions or outcomes
Conversion tracking allows you to follow steps that indicate success such as purchases, form submissions, or newsletter sign-ups.
Continuously update and optimize your content based on keyword performance and user engagement
Regularly refresh and enhance your content to maintain relevance and appeal to users and search engines.