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Optimizing your site structure for search engines

You can optimize your site structure to make it easier for search engines to find all of your content. In general, when you are selling with a Shopify online store, you don’t need to worry about your site structure, because Shopify has built-in search engine optimization (SEO) to make sure that search engines can easily find all of your content.

These SEO best practices are automatically followed for your Shopify online store:

  • Content follows a logical hierarchy of categories.
  • Pages don’t use iframes.
  • URLs use standard characters and simple, readable structure.

You can do a few things yourself to make sure that your site structure is optimized for search engines:

  • Optimize your online store navigation.
  • Use descriptive filenames for your images.
  • Use descriptive link text for internal links.

Optimizing your online store navigation

When you create a menu or a link in your online store navigation, there are a few things to consider related to SEO. It's easier for a search engine to understand the content in your store if its navigation is well organized and follows a logical order. There are a few things to consider when setting up your online store navigation:

  • Menu titles should describe their contents.
  • Menu items should be in an order that makes sense for your store and that shows their relationship to one another.
  • The link text for a menu item should be descriptive and match the title for the page that it links to.
  • Each page should have a link in your online store navigation.
  • Pages shouldn't be more than 3 clicks away from the home page, wherever possible.

You can view and edit your online store navigation from the Navigation page in your Shopify admin.

Use descriptive image filenames

Descriptive, readable filenames for images are better for search engines, because they reveal more about the content of the images. When you save an image by using camera or image editing software, the filename is often a string of numbers, letters, or dates that is difficult to read. To use descriptive filenames for your images, you need to rename the files before you upload them to Shopify.

To update the name of an existing product image so that it's more descriptive:

  1. On your computer, rename the original image file with a more descriptive filename.
  2. From your Shopify admin, click Products.

  3. Click the name of the product with the image that needs to be updated.

  4. In the Images section, click the trash can to remove the product image, and then click Delete.

  5. Click Add images, and select the renamed file from your computer to upload it to Shopify.

When you add a link to a page in your online store in a product or collection description, or in webpage or blog post content, make sure that you use descriptive link text. For example, if you add a link in a blog post to a product called Red hat, then good link text might be:

Check out this red hat.

instead of:

Click here to see the red hat.

Links to your online store from other websites help search engines know that your site is popular and can be trusted. There are services where you can buy paid links, but paid links might result in a lower rank for your online store in search results.

There are a few ways to increase the number of links to your online store:

  • Look for opportunities to list your online store on other websites.
  • Build relationships with other websites and blogs so that you can ask for a link back.
  • Maintain updated and interesting content to create a website that naturally gets linked to.

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