Technical SEO checklist: Ensure your site is user-friendly

Check if your store is mobile-friendly

Technical SEO is one of the more difficult parts of getting your website to rank, but it’s just as important. The technical side of SEO has a lot to do with making sure users have a good experience on your website.See more about SEO.

If pages load slowly or your site isn’t mobile responsive, Google sees this, and is less likely to recommend your website in their search engine rankings.

Review your site on mobile. Every theme on the Shopify theme store is mobile friendly, but if you’re not using Shopify, use this tool to see how it looks on a mobile device. All pages should be just as readable on mobile as they are on desktop.

If you want to double check your mobile optimization, use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test. Enter your website page and see if it’s optimized or not.

Ensure your store is fast

Speed is a ranking factor for both desktop and mobile searches. You can run your site through PageSpeed Insights to get Google’s recommended list of tweaks you can make to your store’s performance.

Use redirects where necessary

When a page on your site becomes inactive—such as when you remove a product that used to be for sale—you can redirect that page to another relevant existing page on your site, giving visitors a new destination instead of a dead link.

Create internal link strategy

Internal linking is one of the most important tactics in SEO marketing. It involves linking from one page to another within your own website. Done right, you can improve your search engine rankings.

The idea is to link pages of specific topics to other pages with relevant content. This helps search engines recognize your topical authority, categorize your content, and rank your pages.

Ecommerce store owners can create internal links through:

  • Related items. When a visitor is on your product page, you can show related products. Google will understand these two items are related and index accordingly.
  • Feature items. Show featured items on your homepage or category pages that link to product pages. Aim to include the most popular products here. Use anchor text that includes keywords when linking to products.
  • Blogging. Create articles about specific products and topics related to your brand. You can link to products or other pages from the post.

 

Build a global navigation menu

A website’s global navigation holds the most important links in your online store. These links tell visitors which pages you consider important. It gives them an easy way to get to specific pages, be it product, collection or sale pages. For SEO, your global navigation links tell crawlers what pages are most important on your site.

Common types of navigation links include:

  • Single-bar navigation. All links live in one bar and are limited.
  • Double-bar navigation. Primary and secondary links live in the navigation bar. They are stacked above each other.
  • Dropdown navigation. Designed so when a user hovers over the navigation link, a list of links dropdown.

Footer menus are also included in your store’s navigation. Shoppers will probably look at your footer menu to find contact and policy information.

Optimize your URLs

URLs seem like a small piece of the puzzle, but they are important for SEO. Your URLs tell search engines about the content on your page. Since both search engines and visitors read your URL, you’ll want to follow a few best practices:

Make URLs readable.

✅ https://yourdomain.com/pink-socks

🛑 https://yourdomain.com/index.php?24551=p44=?

Use hyphens not underscores.

✅ https://yourdomain.com/pink-socks

🛑 https://yourdomain.com/pink_socks

Include target keywords.

✅ https://yourdomain.com/mens-yellow-socks

🛑 https://yourdomain.com/polkdotsocks-yellow-white-for-men

Your goal: Keep your URL structures simple. Organize your content so that URLs are built in a way that is understandable by humans.

Fix duplicate content

Duplicate content refers to when similar content exists on two different URLs. This makes it hard for search engines to determine which of the two pages they should rank. Product pages and collections pages are the most common duplicate content in a store.See more about SEO.

If you have duplicate content that are dynamic pages, use a canonical URL. Use this tag when you want to tell Google which page it should prioritize. You’ll need to add a rel=”canonical” link to the head of any page with duplicate content.