Shopify and SEO: Ranking Your Store In Search Engines

Search engine optimization is a critical part of the success of your Shopify store. So much of your success relies on where you rank and how easily people can find you through organic search.

As you start your Shopify store, you may not be sure of all the steps you need to take to achieve the rankings that you want.

Today, Genius eCommerce will provide a checklist of things to consider for the best SEO practices for your Shopify store. At Genius eCommerce, this is who we are and what we do, providing the tips, tricks, trends, and updates you need to have success in the eCommerce world.

Set Up Google Search Console

There are two steps you should complete to get set up with Google Search Console. First, submit your sitemap to Google. Shopify stores automatically generate a sitemap file, listing all individual pages which helps Google get a look at the organization of your website.

You also want to use Google Search Console to check for crawl errors. Bots crawl through websites and pages and errors occur when a bot cannot reach a specific page or site. It is important to know of these errors and get them corrected as soon as possible.

Keyword Research

Using a keyword planner, which Google also has at your disposal, determine the search volume of keywords and get keyword ideas. The volume of a keyword is the estimated number of monthly searches for that keyword.

As you come up with keywords, map them to specific content types ranging from product pages, category pages, blog posts, and the homepage and construct the pages you should create. Different keywords perform in different ways on each page, so you can target a higher-volume keyword for an informative page or blog post and a lower-volume keyword for a product page designed to draw in purchases.

Optimize Pages

There are a number of things you can do to optimize pages for your eCommerce store. On each page, make sure you are using only one H1 tag. Page titles should be under 60 characters. Meta descriptions should offer as much as possible while staying under 155 characters. Page titles should be compelling and written for human consumption, not search engines and optimization. Include keywords in your page URL. Give your images alt tags and file names.

All of these small pieces of SEO go a long way for your Shopify store and ensure that you will be recognized by search engines.

Link Building

Another step in SEO is to build a link building strategy. The number, quality, and relevancy of links to specific pages and websites are a ranking factor in Google. Links can be used as citations to build trust within your audience and form partnerships with whom you can share and provide value.

In building an effective link strategy, you want to analyze what your competitors are doing, how they have earned links and mentions and look for your own opportunities to get mentions from elsewhere. Free press is a great form of promotion.

Create Quality Content

Content is king when it comes to SEO on Shopify. The first thing to do is to plan your content marketing strategy.

Consider customer questions and if those would be a good topic. Write about the value of your products and what customers get out of it. Match questions that you get or popular search queries with keywords that you have researched.

Consider your word count when producing content. Write original product descriptions that list your features and benefits of the product, not the manufacturers. Add reviews of the product to your pages to help influence customers. All of these things can go a long way to building your credibility.

Additional Ranking Factors

Outside of the major recognizable factors for search engines, there are a few additional ranking factors to consider.

How your website looks on mobile makes a big difference. Google is starting to use mobile-first indexing, so having a quality mobile display and a theme that provides a good and clean mobile presentation is crucial.

Your website’s performance also makes a big difference. Speed is a ranking factor, so you want a website that loads quickly on both desktop and mobile.

If there are any doubts or anything you think you may be overlooking, you can always turn to Google’s recommended practices and use the guidelines provided.

Now that you know some of the steps to take to get your Shopify store optimized and using the best practices on search engines, it’s time to put them into use.

Keep reading the Genius eCommerce blog for more tips, trends, tricks, and updates on eCommerce news and ways to get the most out of your eCommerce store.

Converse with Customers for an Improved User Experience

User experience is a factor that has been subject to a number of trends in eCommerce over the last few years. If you are not making the experience as easy and simple as possible for your customers, or at least providing the necessary resources to make the shopping experience a quality one, you are falling behind on your competition.

One of the ways you can improve the overall user experience is to increase conversations with your customers and connect with them.

Today, we at Genius eCommerce will look closer at this trend and why it is important. This is who we are and what we do, staying up to date on eCommerce trends to keep you informed.

User experience designer and consultant Sarah Doody told Shopify in a recent post that “the path to conversion is not about clicks but about conversation.” She notes that we should think about starting the conversation with prospective buyers at the top of the funnel so that the rest of the experience can be tailored and customized to them.

There is also the need to keep returning customers engaged. This should happen in a timely manner so that there can be a better understanding of how to improve future experiences and get feedback that can be critical to your success.

It is only logical to start the process of communication early. In sales, you wouldn’t wait to communicate in hopes of making a sale, you would communicate early and build a rapport before eventually making your pitch. That connection goes a long way in leading to conversions.

Why is it so important to build a relationship? It becomes more about the brand than the sale. Rather than focusing on making one quick sale, building a connection with the customer focuses on driving home the message of the brand. It becomes more about a long-term relationship than a one-time sale.

Ultimately, this can lead to greater brand success. It makes the brand and therefore the eCommerce experience seem more human, even in a virtual setting.

Customer service is one of the most important qualities for customers. Someone may be willing to buy the first time, but they will become long-term customers from interaction and quality service should problems arise. It also helps to be able to address these possible issues or take care of questions early. Don’t wait for someone to approach you with the problem. Request for new customers to sign up for a newsletter or for exclusive offers that can keep them coming back. Use the newsletter or a blog to provide ongoing information to keep customers educated and informed so they feel like they are being cared for, even when they are not actively making a purchase.

The customer experience can make all of the difference in creating a long-term relationship with a customer or even getting a customer to purchase at all. Some of that has to do with performance, how quickly the website functions, how effectively you display the products and personalization. But creating a dialogue with customers and having a conversation can allow you to tap into information that can help you improve the experience for your customers, and that is valuable feedback that can only help you grow.

Was this information helpful to you? At Genius eCommerce, we stay on top of everything from trends to news in the eCommerce industry so you stay informed. This is who we are and what we do. Continue reading the Genius eCommerce blog for more.

Why You Should Get Smart with Checkout?

The checkout and payment process is the final step for the customer and it can be the most difficult for eCommerce merchants.

The customer journey begins from the start of their search for a product, whether they are browsing or searching for a specific term or product. You have passed every part of the journey — the customer has entered your website from a search result, looked for the product they want or browsed products available, added items to their cart and now are going to complete the purchase. This is where things can sometimes become tiresome for customers.

According to the Baymard Institute, nearly 70 percent of shoppers abandon their carts, not reaching the final step of the customer journey. Of those shoppers, 28 percent abandon their cart because of a long or complicated checkout process.

Other reasons for customers abandoning their cart at checkout are additional fees like shipping and taxes, being prompted to create an account to proceed to checkout, website errors, limited payment methods and more.

Having a smooth and easy to use checkout process that gets customers across the finish line is very important.

There are programs that eCommerce merchants can use to better accommodate customers. You want to make it easy for international customers to make a purchase. You want customers to feel like they can trust the program when going through checkout.

With that in mind, here are some tactics you can try to get customers to checkout and to finish the purchase.

Email – Getting an email address from customers early in the process can help make things a lot easier. Have the customer enter their email and choose whether they want to create an account or check out as a guest. This can help the customer see if they have a previous account that can be used or if proceeding as a guest is better. By getting the customer’s email, even if they do abandon their cart, you can follow up and extend an offer to entice them to complete their purchase later.

Remove Distractions – Once the customer has reached the checkout process, the main focus should shift to getting them to complete the process. You can eliminate elements like the header and footer that can distract from moving forward and make sure to add links for delivery information, reviews and a notification of a secure payment gateway that can help advance customers through checkout.

Make Checkout Quick and Simple – When it comes to filling out the form in checkout and viewing your cart, keep everything simple and easy. Remove the unnecessary elements that can distract customers and keep your call to action clear. Remember, your goal is to have customers finish the checkout process.

At Genius eCommerce, this is who we are and what we do. We strive to provide recent eCommerce news, trends and tips to help you succeed with your eCommerce store.

Be sure to keep reading the Genius eCommerce blog for more tips, tricks, updates, and trends in the eCommerce world.

Why Excellent Customer Service is a Necessary eCommerce Trend

Shopping online is convenient. That’s why people love eCommerce. They can shop from anywhere at any time. With the growth of the eCommerce industry and the convenience it provides, having great customer service is important.

The customer experience can drive your entire business. It helps create repeat customers and gives you a solid reputation. Future customers may search for reviews on your business, and providing good customer service and a quality experience can lead to positive reviews that generate new business.

To make for a quality customer experience, you need to meet people’s expectations with a smooth checkout process, quick response to inquiries and a fast website.

At Genius eCommerce, it is our goal to be a source for trends in the eCommerce industry that you should know. This is who we are and what we do.

Here are some tips on how to achieve excellent customer service for your website.

Checkout – Any extra unnecessary steps should be eliminated. Many customers will start to abandon shopping carts if the checkout process takes too long. Focus on having customers fill out the essential information only and make the checkout process as quick and easy as possible and allow customers the capability of saving their information so they can check out even faster if they are a repeat customer.

Be Engaged and Responsive – An online presence gives you the opportunity to engage and interact with your customers. A timely response can be critical to achieving success in the eCommerce space. Customers may have several questions and if they are not addressed in a timely manner, they may go somewhere else to complete a purchase. There are many ways to interact whether you use social media, email, phone, or a live chat feature on your website. Having a live chat on your website is another growing trend within the industry that has been received well.

customer service

Personalization – The customer experience can be personalized by reading your customers purchase and browsing history. Websites that are developed well have the ability to complete this and read information about the customer through their histories to see what products they may be interested in. Consider how much Amazon has benefitted from this, recommending products based on previous purchases and searches to display products the customer is more likely to buy.

Feedback – If you are interactive with your customers, seek out feedback to find out what the perception of your business is and how you can improve. If there is criticism from a customer, address it. This is a great way to see which areas you excel in and which areas you need improvement, and it also shows a dedication to your customers that you are trying to improve and taking suggestions and criticism seriously.

By having a quality customer experience, you connect with your audience and can help influence future purchases with customers new and old alike. You can address any questions or issues with your customers and provide assistance for them.

Keep reading the Genius eCommerce blog for more updates, tips and trends on the eCommerce industry. This is who we are and what we do, and we want to keep you up to date on everything you need to know.

Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and Why They are Trending

The world of eCommerce continues to grow every year. In fact, it is expected that the worldwide eCommerce market will have an increase in sales of over 246 percent by 2021.

The reason for this is that more people are willing to make purchases online as technology becomes more advanced and transforms the shopping experience.

One of the reasons is a growing trend of augmented reality and virtual reality. Today, we will explore what augmented reality and virtual reality are and why they are trending.

At Genius eCommerce, we stay up to date on the latest trends in the eCommerce world so you can stay in the know. It’s who we are and what we do!

Augmented reality is defined as the integration of digital information with the user’s environment in real time.

Virtual reality is defined as an artificial or computer-generated simulation or recreation of a real-life environment or situation.

The difference between the two is that augmented reality uses the existing environment and overlays the new information with it, whereas virtual reality creates an artificial environment that makes the user feel like they are experiencing a situation first-hand.

augmented reality virtual reality

VR devices are already a popular trend that has developed over recent years. Between video games and immersive television experiences, virtual reality is a way to add yourself to the action as you would in a video.

From an eCommerce standpoint, the way people are experiencing virtual reality is through virtual showrooms and product portals. Whether it is viewing a shop in a virtual setting of a showroom before you physically go to buy or see the product or just a high-quality viewing of the product, the realistic view adds a real-life shopping experience to the eCommerce world.

eCommerce stores can take advantage of virtual reality by providing a glimpse at the product, the expected view of a product or a showroom without physically being there, allowing a look at the general setting before you ever attend. Ultimately, it becomes part of the shopping experience without getting in the car and going to a location. It’s a way to see how a store looks before you ever visit it or to see the product before making a purchase.

A way augmented reality is being implemented is through real-life product visualization. This feature is allowing customers to not only see a product before they purchase it, but to view the product visualized within their home. For example, if you were shopping for a new table, you could see what it looked like in your dining room before ever making the purchase with an augmented reality visualization.

These features both create a more immersive and involved shopping experience, which is ultimately the goal. People don’t want to shop the way they did before. They want to put technology to use, and you have that chance to reach a whole new client base that is interested in completing an entire purchase process from browsing products to check out, all in one place. Giving them the full experience of shopping in a brick-and-mortar location without leaving the comfort of their home is certainly a way to keep interest high.

Now that you have seen how a more immersive experience with augmented and virtual reality is changing the eCommerce world, you can start to take the steps to develop your website to give the user experience that customers desire.

Stay tuned for more eCommerce tips, tricks, updates and trends with Genius eCommerce by reading the Genius eCommerce blog. Remember that we keep you up to date on everything eCommerce so you can stay in the know. It’s who we are and what we do!

Why Website Performance is So Important to eCommerce

We may think of eCommerce trends as applications or features to websites that make them stand out. Sometimes, the biggest trends don’t have anything to do with a special feature, but a routine function to a website.

Website performance has been a popular trend over the years, mainly because people are impatient. If you want to make a connection with your customers, you need to have a website that loads quickly and makes function easy.

Most people are willing to wait about three seconds for a page to load before they abandon it and try to find something else. Most mobile devices average around 22 seconds for a website to load. Therefore, page speed and website performance hold a lot of importance to your website. You could have the nicest design but if your website doesn’t load quickly, people will never get to see it if they keep abandoning it.

More than just trying to catch the attention of your visitors and keep them engaged, but it also has benefits for SEO. Google views page speed as a ranking factor because user experience is so important, so how quickly your page loads and reacts to action holds greater importance.

How do you improve page speed? Optimizing images is a great place to start. You can cut down on load time by making sure all images on your pages are optimized.

Having a faster website increases conversions. If you reduce the page speed by three seconds, revenue increases by up to 12 percent. Pages that take three seconds or more to load produce 22 percent fewer conversions. Slow loading speeds and web performance would even affect a search engine powerhouse like Google. If Google had its search results slowed by just four-tenths of a second, they may lose 8 million searches each day.

That goes a long way with customers. Visitors to your website don’t want to wait. They want to gain access to the website, see products, get more information on products and complete purchases quickly. That kind of efficiency can lead to more traffic, better word of mouth marketing, better online reviews and eventually more customers.

website performance

A faster website performance also increases the SEO rankings. In eCommerce, your search rankings are critical to success and depend on it heavily. User experience and performance are now a part of the equation when considering website results, included in Google’s algorithm for ranking. The bottom line is that when a website performs poorly or loads slowly, a visitor spends less time on the website. A faster website improves operating costs as well, so there are many factors that go into improving page speed and website performance beyond the ranking system.

Now that you know about the importance of website performance and loading speed, you should consider your own website and if improvement is needed, especially as this trend continues to grow and affect the industry.

At Genius eCommerce, that is who we are and what we do, keeping up with the trends and tips within the eCommerce industry so you stay in the know and are prepared as changes and trends happen.

Be sure to continue reading the Genius eCommerce blog for more information and updates on other trends in the eCommerce world.