5 most efficient methods to optimize your Shopify store
The Shopify modular system offers online merchants an enormous amount of scope to realize their dream of having their own online store. However, after a certain time, many reach a point where they no longer know what to do. The store no longer runs smoothly and it’s time to start optimizing it. But where do you start?
From years of experience as an Shopify experts, I have compiled my most efficient methods for optimizing your Shopify store in this article. You don’t have to be an IT expert – the tips are actionable for you too.
1. Shine with perfect SEO
Search engine optimization is something you’re almost certainly familiar with. SEO is divided into two major subcategories: On-page optimization and off-page optimization. Try to make your content as structured as possible. If you run a blog, work with keywords, active language and many paragraphs for clarity.
It is not necessary to write a perfect text. Go for a qualitative added value and no sales texts. Your store visitors don’t want to stumble over advertisements at every corner of your blog and be prompted to take an active action. It is important that you generate traffic and you can do that through informative texts. These aspects belong to on-page optimization.
Off-page optimization is more about what happens in the background and that usually requires IT know-how. However, Shopify implements all the necessary things for the technical part of search engine optimization in its system. So you don’t actually have to do much.
It will automatically create a sitemap for you, just like duplicate content is avoided by inserting canonical tags. Shopify themes are basically built to have flat hierarchies. This allows Google to load your store or blog articles faster and rank your online store higher in search results as a result.
So try to write creative and informative texts with the given means. Pay attention to regularity and you will be rewarded with more traffic. In addition, you can promote your articles on your social media channels, which will give you another boost.
You don’t have to resort to paid ads to do this. Unlike your organic posts, they are not sustainable and you can achieve a lot without spending money.
2. Make your product pages clear and modern
The product page is among the most important pages for online stores, because it decides whether your store visitor will buy a product or not. There are a few different approaches to getting the most out of this page. However, a lot depends on your industry.
In order for your product page to be successful, you need to have
- high quality product photos
- good product descriptions
- meaningful CTA buttons
- as much information as possible about shipping, delivery and their costs
When shopping online, people need a lot more clues than when they’re usually shopping at the mall. The thing they miss the most is touching the product. Therefore, provide as much information as possible about your product to your potential customers.
For example, 360-degree views put your product in the right light and show it to your potential customers from every conceivable perspective. Information about sizes or product photos, which are put into a meaningful context, also help the customer to make a decision.
Let’s say you sell necklaces in three different lengths. You can make it easier for your customers to find the right length by providing a wearing photo of the necklace for each given length. This way, the customer can see which necklace length is right for them.
To stand out from the crowd of popular Shopify themes, you can customize your product page. The Shopify app store offers many different apps that allow you to change the structure of your product page. With this optimization, you’ll create an individual style that will go down especially well with your customers.
Despite the drag & drop features that a landing page builder app offers, you should still try to create a clear and orderly structure. Don’t change anything about the basics of a product page, because that can lead to unnecessary confusion of your customers. So make sure that even after your optimization, the shopping cart is still on the top right, your prices are clearly communicated and you display your call-to-action button “add to cart” in a large and eye-catching color.
3. How fast is really fast?
You’re now generating traffic and presenting great product pages, but you still notice a relatively high bounce rate in your analytics tools. This may be due to your loading time!
Run a simple Google PageSpeed Insights test and check how fast you perform in the desktop and mobile version of your Shopify store.
Probably, your desktop version is running without any major issues, because that’s what most merchants focus on. But your mobile view of the store is not in the green and is more or less neglected by you. This is much more relevant nowadays than it was a few years ago, because more and more people surf online stores via their smartphone or tablet and make purchases.
That’s why it’s especially important for you as an online retailer to take a look at this and use Google’s speed test. This shows you a breakdown of the problems found. Take these tips to heart and implement them. By optimizing speed, you’ll win back your lost mobile customers pretty quickly.
Another step to lower loading speed is to focus on less. Try to build your store in such a way that you use only a few apps. Therefore, right at the beginning, think about which theme with its features suits your plan the most, because this will save you many unnecessary apps.
4. Inspire confidence in your customers
From the first second that an interested person spends on your online store in a buying mood, he should feel safe. Trust is one of the most important qualities of a professional online store. You will only be able to win over potential customers with transparency.
Honesty and openness are a problem for many, but usually only if they have something to hide, right? If you play with open cards from the beginning – and you should in any case, to be successful at all – it should be no problem to entrust all necessary information about you, your store and your products to your customers.
Create an “About Us” page where you talk about your company’s philosophy and values. The customer wants to know who they are actually buying from and what they are getting into when they leave their money in your cash register.
If your products are made in a certain way or if you focus on organic farming and sustainable production, then let your store visitors know this as well. You can do this on dedicated pages, under your philosophy, or with additional information such as nutritional values directly on the product page.
The idea of transparency should also be reflected in your pricing policy. Be open and visible for all, how your product prices are composed and especially how the delivery and shipping costs are calculated.
Convincing customers and gaining their trust also works with seals of approval. If you don’t have one yet, you should apply or get certified as soon as possible. 68% of German consumers are not sure what each individual seal stands for, but they still help them find their way around.
On the one hand, you can score points with product quality trust seals, for example, and on the other hand with seals that convey to customers that it is safe to buy from your store.
According to the DsiN Security Index 2019, 56% of those surveyed pay particular attention to seals of approval in online stores. Therefore, use certificates from Trusted Shops or Protected Shops, for example.
Secure payment methods play a decisive role in general security and trust. If you offer your customers many different methods, this will also contribute to their usability. 5.
5. Make it easy to shop with you
The aforementioned usability is probably especially important for young online shoppers and “in-between” shoppers. Because on the smartphone on the go, a store looks significantly different than on the desktop at home. However, your online store is not directly user-friendly because you provide a mobile version, but only when you focus on your customers.
To get a better understanding of your store visitors, it’s helpful to watch a friend click through your store. This will help you understand what they are looking for and what interests them the most. This will allow you to target the areas where click-through is lacking and improve them.
Basically, try to make your site as simple as possible. Selected themes that have a flat page hierarchy by default will help you to do that. This is not only good for your SEO, but also for your customers. The Shopify themes from Out of the Sandbox are a great help here.
The easier it is for a customer to click through your category and product pages to the shopping cart and checkout, the better for you. So, remove unnecessary stumbling blocks that could interrupt this fluid progression.
Also implement a filter and search function on your category pages so that store visitors can find their desired product more easily.
Most importantly, let your customers make their own decisions. Offer them many different options for their payment and product shipping. If a customer has the choice between credit card, PayPal, Klarna and prepayment, they will make exactly the choice they think is best for them, just like when choosing the right shipping service provider.
An optimized Shopify store without IT know-how
If you take all these aspects to heart, you are guaranteed to have a beautiful and, above all, optimized store. With Shopify, even IT inexperienced people succeed in starting an online store. These tips for optimizing your store clearly show that you don’t need to program anything or know any HTML codes to offer your customers a professional store.
Remember that the most important thing is to see everything from the customer’s point of view. Your store should not please you and your employees, but only the store visitors.
Therefore, avoid fancy things that you might think are useful and rather include features that are really useful for the customer. Otherwise, the following always applies: The proof of the pudding is in the eating!
Especially at the beginning of an online business, it makes sense to try things out and to dare to make changes. It’s no problem to admit to yourself that you don’t know where to start.
Experienced Shopify experts will help you focus and discuss your problems and ways to fix them with you. Because that’s what they’re there for.