The correct SEO strategy of Shopify for e-commerce companies in 2018

In a recent expert summary for the WHSR blog, I have discussed the importance of finding the right platform for your business. Among others, several experts opened the discussion about Shopify as a great CMS for e-commerce businesses, seeking to incorporate social networks into their sales funnels. Since we're here, let's talk more about Shopify's correct SEO strategy and how to prepare your marketing efforts for 2018 (and why not, even more).

Shopify statistics for non-believers

According to a combination of official statistics and news reports from Shopify (source: ExpandedRamblings), as of August 1, 2017, there were approximately 500,000 Shopify merchants in 175 countries. In 2016, the same source reported more than 20,000 merchant customers, with 25% of the merchants that enabled the social sale for the same year. Since 2016, the platform reported that 62% of traffic and 51% of sales came from mobile devices. As of August 2017, there are 1,800 applications in the Shopify application store, which have been downloaded 7 million times. 1.2 million people actively use the Shopify backend platform. The total amount of sales processed in Shopify to date exceeded $ 10 billion, according to statistics from the end of 2015. Talk about the potential.

How are these statistics reflected in your business?

To summarize these statistics and results:

  • 500,000 merchants in 175 countries means little competition, to be exact 2,857 merchants per country;
  • Only 25% of them use social selling, to be exact 100,000;
  • 62% of mobile traffic and 51% of mobile sales means that you can jump to the mobile optimization of your shopify shop from the first day, so all the funds and efforts are directed towards a solid ROI;
  • Sales of $ 10 billion, and 51% came from mobile devices, more than $ 5 billion in sales of mobile devices!
  • 1,800 Shopify App Store applications, downloaded 7 million times, on average, each application was downloaded 3,889 times. A close look at the Google or Apple App Store, and you will see that most applications do not reach that number unless they surround a popular service or product.

This means that the Shopify platform offers immense potential, little competition, great dynamic and user commitment, generates money, sales and opportunities for merchants, developers and customers.

The correct SEO strategy of Shopify

From the previous numbers, it is very clear that mobile search optimization should be part of your long-term marketing plan. But do not skip the basic optimization of Google. Shopify companies can now synchronize their store with Google Merchant Center, through direct and automated API sources. If you set up a Google AdWords campaign along the way, your store's products become visible on all Google channels. This is an excellent option to consider, since PPC has its role in the acquisition, retention and reactivation of clients. The application that does this is called Google Shopping, with more information and comments available here. The platform also has integrated analytics, which can be accessed as independent or integrated in your GA, to monitor the evolution of your e-commerce business. A website optimizer feature will help you make the store's search engine friendly, however, keep in mind that you can not rely on just the pre-built configuration, and this will require additional adjustments.

Check the basics

No online store can go without these basic calls to action:

  • Title tags, meta descriptions and page URLs for blog posts, web pages, product pages or collections, all editable
  • Topics automatically generate title tags with the name of your store, as well as Sitemap and robots.txt XML files
  • ALT tag for product images, customizable img file names
  • Sitemap.xml and robots.txt files that can be sent and tested later in GA / Webmaster tools
  • Share social networks and link social network profiles: all topics must have these settings
  • Canonical URL to avoid duplication of content or pages: if this seems Chinese, here is a Shopify guide.
  • Ready features for mobile devices and templates adapted to mobile devices.
  • SSL Certificates (this will affect your long-term ranking, as Google has just announced)
  • Security certificates: your clients need to know that their data is handled with care and they are not exposed to data breaches of any kind. Shopify offers security features compatible with DSS level 1 PCI.
  • Additional applications and add-ons that can help improve your search optimization efforts (you may want to consider schema.org and the brands that help structure your electronic store pages, for a better user experience)
  • The built-in blogging system and the news corner allow your store to benefit from content marketing and rich keyword content, easily indexable by search engines

What the experts are suggesting

When it comes to Shopify's best SEO strategy for electronic stores, Oberlo has some tips to add:

  • Choose the relevant page titles that best express what is relevant to the clients' search.
  • Your title tags are important not only for customers, but also for search engines, to understand what your pages and your virtual store are about.
  • Set title tags for each page, product, collection and blog post. You do not want to miss the opportunity to generate traffic or potential customers.
  • Keep your short title tags, ideally with less than 70 characters, to get a full view of the search engines.
  • Always add the name of your store in the title tag, to give credibility to search users and create a bridge between products and brands. The best way to include it is to add the name of your store to the end of the title of your page after a separation symbol, such as the vertical lines "|" or the hyphen "-".
  • At the beginning, incorporate your target keywords in your title tag. You may notice in the future that titles that contain keywords strive to be relevant and will generate a better classification than just keywords used for authoritative purposes.
  • Add variations to your keywords, depending on the page you're targeting. The keywords in the title tag on the home page will likely differ from the product pages or blog pages. And it's very good to differ!
  • Add keywords to your meta description to increase the visibility of your search, and use a practical language for your visitors: they need solutions for your search, do not forget to take into account the human aspect.
  • Keep your meta-descriptions under 155 characters and personalize them based on products, pages, publications: you'll get it.
  • The alternate text of the alternative image can contain complex keywords, such as 4 to 6 words ("women with summer discount"), and ideally, you should change the name of your image with a proper name: the visual search engines will surely they will realize that.
  • Use the platform as a transmission environment: every time there is an update, or a new product, be sure to write an article or announce it to the world. Search engines love cool things.
  • The descriptions of the products also require periodic reviews. Make sure you keep them fresh and relevant. Do not exaggerate with the keywords, either.
  • Generate your traffic with blog posts, customer stories, product updates, new releases, leading lists, etc.

The social is the new sociable

You heard me well. Today, there are additional ways to stay in touch with customers and generate new ones. Facebook Live, Youtube Live, sessions AMA (ask me what you want), Instagram Live & Instagram stories. If you're new to Instagram, check out my Instagram marketing guide on NinjaOutreach. Instagram has also recently introduced surveys in its Insta Stories, so you can ask your audience to vote directly "yes" or "no" (you can also customize your options) about a new product, update, action that the brand is considering take / do . In addition, you can access information and control who is mentioning your brand (option on Instagram). Perspectives include Impressions, Reach, Website Clicks, Followers Activity, Video Views, Saved, Answers, Outputs. With social media platforms that allow video streaming and live video support, this leads to a foundation for building the community on other channels in addition to its own electronic store. An advice: Do not stay away from the community, since this is also a product in itself!

Mobile SEO

"Birds of a feather flock together", and this applies to any type of search engine optimization. In your GA console, you can access specific mobile factors, in addition to the relevance of classic content, authority, page loading speed and domain age. A Google mobile page speed tool will give you access to what needs to be improved for mobile traffic, as well as additional errors and how to fix them. You can find many mobile seo tips in the Mobile Usability search traffic section. Now, Google and other search engines pay attention to content and keywords specific to mobile devices, which receive a "preferential treatment" over the normal "desktop" pages. Local companies and local stores have the advantage in the rankings. What is great news if you plan to optimize the deliveries of your Shopify store in different countries and cities. To identify the cities and countries to which to go, start by considering the locations of your visitors (country, region, specific city), in your GA account and the locations of your followers in social networks, if you want to target Your efforts advertising Google AMP (accelerated mobile pages) can help increase visibility in mobile searches, but not much in desktop searches. AMP works only for editors or Google News articles for now, but the future is bright. You could use Google AMP for your public relations campaigns or link building efforts. As with search engine optimization for desktop websites, you can improve the rankings if you consider the following:

  • Improve the loading speed of your website, by compressing files, minimizing CSS, HTML and Javascript, optimizing images with alt tags and size compression, reducing redirects, faster hosting, the best CDN plans and responsive design.
  • Apply the principle of relevance: help search engines and users understand what your business is about. Include your business locally in Google Business, Facebook Business, Instagram, LinkedIn, use geo-targeting and Yahoo and Bing directory listings.
  • Ask for customer comments and testimonials. I prefer to use Charmed, a simple comment tracking tool that sends customers an email and asks them to rate their service or purchase from 1 to 10, then redirects them to a comment text box. Once the client clicks Send, the tool collects comments in a type of "news" configuration. The tool is free for up to 250 contacts.
  • Use a roadmap or visual planner for your SEO strategy to keep track of updates, changes, optimization efforts. TeamWeek better explains how the roadmap tools work on your blog, and suggests first creating separate groups for your departments (or teams), followed by separate milestones along the way.
  • Improve small but important mobile details, such as 404 errors, full-screen pop-ups, and defective redirects.

Is SEMRush article Explain more about mobile optimization and expert recommendations.

To take away

As many marketing professionals advertise, today anyone can start a business. The opportunities are endless. But you can not do it in the jungle without an adequate plan. As CMS, Shopify has potential and clearly benefits the e-commerce business model. The correct Shopify SEO strategy starts with the basic fixes and principles, and moves towards the electronic stores ready for mobile devices. Shopify has generated more than $ 5 billion in mobile sales (that is, 51% of total sales), and 62% of the traffic is mobile. By presenting the benefits of social media, Google mobile optimization tips and expert suggestions, there is no way your e-commerce business will lose visibility or be exposed to competition. Image source: Unsplash