They say we only use 10% of our brains. It’s utter nonsense, of course. Most of us use our entire brains. The jury’s still out when it comes to Congress, but they are notorious for not letting the facts get in the way of a good story.
So your brain gets plenty of use, but we’re a bit more skeptical when it comes to your Shopify SEO services. Unfortunately, the odds are pretty high that you’re not milking every bit of SEO potential from your Shopify account—even more so if you don’t have a Shopify SEO expert in your corner.
Don’t worry. Big Leap to the rescue. Let’s talk about the built-in Shopify SEO services you might be missing, the improvements you can make on your own, and how an expert can kick your efforts into high gear.
But first, let’s talk pain points.
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The Pain Points: Why Your Shopify Game Might Need an Upgrade
Shopify has a lot to offer. It makes it easy to manage your inventory, accept payments, sell products online and in person, and ship orders to your customers—all with easy scalability that works for both small startups and massive enterprises.
But you’re here because you’d like to see improvements. You might be running into problems like this:
If all this sounds familiar, the solution is clear: You need to step up your Shopify SEO services game. And the best place to start is by taking advantage of the tools Shopify provides to all its clients.
Already at Your Fingertips: Built-In Shopify SEO Services
If you’re not using Shopify’s SEO tools, you might be leaving money on the proverbial table. Of course, it’s easier said than done if you don’t have the time to invest—in which case, hi, we’re Big Leap, and we can absolutely help—so your SEO efforts now can pay big dividends in the future.
So we recommend making sure you’re using what Shopify gave you before you move on to the next steps:
- Keywords: You want to make sure the keywords read naturally and aren’t just jammed in there. Adding relevant, popular keywords to page titles, meta-descriptions, image alt text, and the body of your text is a great starting point.
- Site Optimization: Organizing your site for easy navigation helps your visitors get around, but it also has SEO impact when it makes sense to search engine site crawlers. Make sure your menus are descriptive, that anchor texts match what they link to, and each page on your site links internally.
- Sitemap: These files are automatically generated for each Shopify account, and there’s a handy guide to help you find yours. Once you have the sitemap.xml file, submit it to Google through the Google Search Console. (They’ll make you create an account first if you don’t have one.)
- Robots.txt: This file prevents a search engine from peeking at certain pages on your site. That’s right: We’ve been focusing on coaxing the search engine crawlers to index your site, and now we’re trying to keep them away—but only from certain pages. Think of pages you don’t want customers to find directly from a search engine, like the shopping cart. First of all, a shopping cart is unique to individual customers. And why would you want to drop a user directly into an empty cart? Robots.txt can make search engines skip over it.
These are the basics. If you haven’t gotten through the list, we recommend blocking off some time to knock them out.
Of course, this piece isn’t about doing the bare minimum. We want to maximize your Shopify SEO skills. So let’s move on to the next level.
Upgrades You Can DIY: Additional Shopify SEO Optimizations
We’re getting a little more complex now, but you may notice a difference if you can carve out the time to make these SEO optimizations:
- Remove duplicate URLs from your internal structure. Shopify users run into an issue where the platform creates noncanonical and canonical URL paths for your products. It lets Google know which the canonical (and preferred) URLs are—but search engines may ignore this directive, especially when your entire store is organized with noncanonical links. These duplicate links can confuse and hurt your SEO. Follow these steps to sort out the issue.
- Create keyword-optimized blog content. Obviously, we believe in a consistently updated blog with a steady stream of high-quality content. Shopify has blogging capabilities built in, but this feature goes underutilized far too often. And we get it. It takes time to research keywords (although you should have a foundation from the previous section), and you need to invest resources in some well-written content. But writing valuable, engaging content that aligns with your keyword strategy is one of the best ways to drive organic traffic.
- Establish backlinks. We can’t possibly exaggerate the value of quality backlinks. And you don’t have to take our word for it. SEO experts point to backlinks as the third most important factor for ranking your page. And this isn’t like how Rachel is the third most likable Friend; this is important. When other sites link to your Shopify store, it makes Google think you’ve got something valuable to offer. If multiple sites Google trusts link to you (and that quality blog content might give them something to link to), you’re in great shape.
- Keep up on your keyword strategy. So you did your keyword research, and you’re churning out relevant blog posts that appeal to your target audience. Rinse and repeat, right? Not exactly. SEO best practices are always changing, and the best keywords for your strategy will evolve based on search volume, competition, and other factors. Keep fine-tuning your approach for the best results.
That should keep you busy for a little while. Or maybe you’re feeling overwhelmed at this point, which is fine. This is why Shopify SEO experts like Big Leap exist. We can take the lead and give your SEO the shot in the arm it desperately needs.
We’ve covered tasks you can perform independently if you have the time and know-how. Now we will switch gears and discuss the difference the pros can make.
The Next Level: What Shopify SEO Experts Can Do for You
What will your Shopify SEO strategy look like with an expert agency? We can’t tell you, and we’re going to throw a bit of side-eye to anyone who comes with a plan already in place. See, the best SEO plan for you will be personalized and customized, and it’s not something we can throw into a blog post to serve everybody.
We can discuss the basic roadmap, which starts with seeing where you are.
1. Start with an SEO Audit
One-size-fits-all solutions don’t work because you’re not starting from the same point as the business down the block. We can spend all day guessing what you need, but the only way to know is to get in there and complete a full SEO audit. We need to look at:
- On-page SEO issues
- Off-site problems
- Content and topic gaps
- Technical SEO issues
- UX hiccups
You might have glanced at some of these potential problem areas in the previous DIY steps, but expect an SEO agency to dig much deeper and find gaps and oversights that take years of experience to spot.
2. Tailor a Unique SEO Strategy
This is no time for buying off the rack. Once your Shopify SEO experts have figured out the improvements to make, it’s time to prioritize them based on the budget in play, the effort involved and the payoff we can expect.
We’re looking at a long-term strategy here—remember, SEO is constantly evolving, so a comprehensive strategy needs to be just as malleable—but it makes sense to start with relatively low-effort, high-impact solutions that’ll provide momentum as we tackle more complex issues.
3. Perform Keyword Research and Optimize Your Content
Sound familiar? Yeah, we discussed keyword research on a DIY level above, and we stand behind those tips. You can implement a keyword strategy yourself and see some gains.
But experience and access both come into play here, and the pros can accomplish more with keyword research than you’re likely to achieve on your own.
- Experience: You may be handy, but you probably can’t fix a leak as quickly or thoroughly as a licensed plumber. You might have a mean fastball on the company softball league, but that doesn’t mean you could go head-to-head with Shohei Ohtani. Pick whatever analogy you prefer—experience matters.
- Access: Some solid free or inexpensive keyword research tools exist. Google Keyword Planner is one popular one. But the pros have access to tools the average business owner probably doesn’t even know about, just like an SEO specialist isn’t familiar with your trade’s specialized tools.
Optimizing content might sound easy. You might have talented in-house writers who can strike the right tone for your brand and target audience, incorporating keywords in all the right spots. If they have the skill and bandwidth, why not?
Of course, that’s a big if.
But we suggest you turn to professionals if your first thought is to get an AI to churn out mediocre content. Sure, you’ll have new posts for your blog, but is it the sort of work that gets shared? That gets quality backlinks to help your SEO? No. No, it’s not.
4. Diagnose and Iron Out Technical SEO
Again, this is something we touched on above, and there are technical SEO tasks you can clean up. But the thing about technical SEO is that it gets technical.
And if you’re in a position where you’re looking at technical SEO for a massive enterprise website or looking at dozens of Shopify microsites for different franchises? Let’s just say it doesn’t get less complicated.
Does it matter? Google reports that bounce rates increase by 32% as your page load time balloons from one to three seconds. Now multiply that by countless pages on your Shopify store that are all struggling.
Editing a robots.txt file is one thing (and even that can be daunting if you’ve never done it before), but scale turns technical SEO troubleshooting into a beast. It’s manageable, but you need the expertise and experience to do it right.
5. Acquire the Backlinks You Need
Hey—if you write stellar content that speaks to your audience’s needs and establish yourself as a leader in your field, high-quality backlinks should just roll in without any extra effort, right?
Now that we’ve all enjoyed a good belly laugh, let’s acknowledge that 1) that’s a massive if, and 2) nothing’s ever that easy. And it’s another crucial reason why having Shopify experts in your corner will help you accomplish your SEO goals faster and more efficiently.
A well-regarded SEO agency has the connections, reputation, and know-how to determine the most valuable backlinks that will complement your brand and content and boost your SEO ranking.
The Bottom Line: 5 Benefits of Using Shopify SEO Services
If any of the above pain points struck a chord with you, you already have a good reason to invest in SEO strategies for your Shopify business. The real question might be whether you can afford to ignore SEO. After all, do you want to turn your back on the following?
- Increased Organic Traffic: 60% of marketers report that inbound, organic traffic, like blog content, is their best source for quality leads.
- Higher Search Engine Rankings: Being at the top of the pack matters. The top five organic search results share 67.6% of all search engine clicks.
- Improved User Experience: How does SEO impact the experience of your users? Once they’ve found your store, why do they care how well you’re ranking? Fair enough. They don’t. But pursuing great SEO means improving the user experience. Google is kind of obsessed with your bounce rate, so you’ll need to show your users a great time if you’re serious about SEO.
- Better Sales: Can increased traffic, higher rankings, and a stellar user experience increase conversions? As far as twists go, it’s not quite on the level with Bruce Willis being dead the whole time. In fact, we don’t feel the need to provide a stat or a source here because the answer is just.so.obvious.
- More Efficient Spending: But we will source this one. 49% of surveyed experts reported that boosting organic search through SEO results in the highest ROI of any digital marketing method. Your investment in SEO works harder for you than any other strategy you choose.
Making the Right Choice: What to Look for in a Shopify SEO Expert
Partnering with an agency that specializes in Shopify SEO is smart—the numbers don’t lie. But finding the right fit is as important as deciding to jump in. Ask the following questions to separate a Shopify SEO expert from a novice:
- What sort of experience do you have working with Shopify SEO?
- What methods would you employ to improve my store’s rankings? (Remember to shy away from agencies that only offer a one-size-fits-all solution.)
- How often can I expect updates and communication from your team?
- What results have you produced for other Shopify retailers?
- Do you have some testimonials I can look at?
We recommend looking for a highly communicative SEO team with dedicated, demonstrated results committed to unique, custom solutions.
But you do you.
Big Leap: Your Shopify SEO Agency
And now, we bring it home with our pitch, but we’ll let the numbers speak for us.
Auto Care came to Big Leap with a couple of successful Amazon campaigns under its belt, but the company was struggling to make the online impact they needed. Big Leap designed a custom SEO plan based on their unique needs, leading to the following results:
- 22% increased revenue
- 105% increased organic traffic
- 24% decreased bounce rate
- 136% increased blog pageviews
The difference is that Auto Care wasn’t fulfilling its maximum SEO potential, but now things are changing rapidly.
What sort of results could your organization achieve? Reach out to Big Leap today to see how we can help you unlock your SEO potential for your Shopify store.