SEO optimization for Shopify can be a time consuming and frustrating process. Will Lynch, the ‘sommelier of e-commerce content’ joins Lucas and Pitstop to cover some of the most common mistakes and misunderstandings shop-owners frequently face.
Getting the most out of Shopify and SEO optimization is frequently a confusing mess of misunderstandings, mistakes and outright mistruths about the process. Will Lynch, of the UK Shopify strategy firm Underwater Pistol, helps to demystify the SEO experience with some tips and tricks to keep you out of the quagmire, and get your shop noticed without any unnecessary hassle.
Myth: “SEO optimization on Shopify takes too long, it’s easier and cheaper to work around it myself for faster results”
Fact: Shopify is built to be robust, not for speed of SEO spread. When millions of customers try to use the system at once, it will maintain and thrive, rather than collapsing under the weight and traffic. Having a safe and stable marketplace is more important than getting your brand out there at a pace that matches your expectations. As well, don’t try to do SEO optimization yourself, as we mentioned in previous episodes, optimization in an incredibly complex process that requires more time and attention than you have. Hire professionals, and trust in their campaigns.
Myth: “Images should be as small as possible to work on all devices, and never use video, they won’t load quickly for customers”
Fact: You should be targeting your multimedia based only on what your traffic analytics are telling you. Don’t assume who you viewers and audience are, check the data, and tailor it around their activity. If they seem to only interact with your smallest quality static images on mobile platforms, then go small, if they’re watching videos on desktops, go big.
Myth: “An image is an image, it’ll look good regardless”
Fact: you have to put the time into resizing and standardizing everything if you want to put your best foot forward. Don’t waste the data you are constantly gathering about how your brand is performing online, integrate as much of its lessons as you can, and stick to it once you’ve developed a personal standard.
Myth: “We don’t cater to disabled consumers, we don’t need alt-text or specific image names”
Fact: Google traffic works with far more details than just the buzzwords you use in posts or hashtags; even the very names of images you upload can increase your search results via strategic keywords, and including alt-text tags on images not only allows your brand to be more progressive ad helpful to those who are visually impaired, but also increase the number of SEO-vectors for those online to come across your store.
Myth: “I sell a product, I’m not a blogger, I don’t need to be posting articles or comments”
Fact: Every post associating your store, brand or product will increase your traffic, even if just by a few hits. Talk about great ways to use your products, stories of why you enjoy them yourself, talk about where they come from, their history as an item, or where you sourced them. This will not only engage your consumers with your brand, but every searchable instance mentioned will act to increase your traffic flow.
Taking Email Personalization To The Next Level
Far more than just plugging in an auto-fill name and sending off the same boilerplate email to everyone in your list, engagement personalization grease that keeps the wheels of e-commerce turning. According to the ‘sommelier of ecommerce content’ Will Lynch, the options for personalization are nearly infinite, and some first-time store owners may quickly find themselves overwhelmed with the options. Here are some of his top tips that anyone can easily implement in their personalization strategy:
- Incentivize returning customers such as adding a dynamic loyalty points to abandoned cart emails. Some shoppers abandon carts because they were distracted, some because they wanted to check for better deals from your competitors; a simple automated contact to make sure they did or did not still want the items they were previous perusing may bring them back, but make them a special, minor savings on one or more of the items, either during that transaction or future transactions, and the chance of them returning to complete the transaction greatly increases.
- Personalize automated birthday emails. As mentioned in a previous episode of pitstop, according to Omnisend automated birthday emails drive a staggering amount of your online sales to begin with. Personalizing these messages beyond plugging in the shopper’s name only increases the chances of making a sale. Tailor your contact with them to feature items they tend to look at, and make suggestions based on similar products, or offer discounts specifically for items they purchase repeatedly. Even non-purchasing click throughs of these emails helps, as it confirms to Google and other search engines that your address is valid, and not a waste of traffic to be avoided.
- Use the opportunity to push your specials. If you have a sale going on, or an item that is hot/needs to be liquidated, include the offer directly in the personalized emails. Any chance to organically push a sale is a good chance, and people who receive even automated birthday messages create a positive association between how that email makes them feel and your brand/products, making them far more willing to take advantage of your promoted special.
- Use a dynamic messaging system that updates the very emails themselves. If everytime your customer looks at the personalized email, it shows them something new they may be interested in, or updates them on how many or few of an item are left, they’re more likely to re-engage again and again with that email. This not only generates more sales, but more data for future lists and interactions.
- Everyone likes to feel special, and people who feel special are more generous. Make a big deal out of your customers, and treat everyone, especially your top tier customers and loyalty points members, as VIPs, and make sure to let them know they’re VIPs to your brand. This will bring them closer to identifying with your products and buying from your store not only for themselves, but for others, seeing sharing your items with non-customers as sharing that positivity and special feeling.
- Always, ALWAYS be A/B testing, that is varying up your personalizations and promotions, then analyzing the results for what works and what doesn’t. The more you test, the more you improve from analyzing the results, the more accurate your promotional outreach will be, the more customers who will follow through back to your store, and the more units you will sell, bottom line.
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