Do I Need Structured Data for my Shopify Store?

7 Oct, 2020 ,

Ever wondered why Google seems to promote some Shopify stores and not others? Contrary to popular belief, it’s not just the luck of the draw. In fact, it all comes down to a carefully planned strategy based on structured data. Shopify designers use this to boost SERPs visibility and attract higher-quality leads.

What is structured data?

Think about the products you’re selling – or are planning to sell – through Shopify. Each product has a wealth of information that goes along with it, including name, price, weight, dimensions, energy efficiency, and more. Right now, this information is probably all over the place, making it difficult for Google to read. Structured data is a way of standardising it, transferring it into a format that Google can understand, and making it one of the most important aspects of Shopify development today.

Why use structured data for Shopify?

Over the past few years, Google has been making numerous changes which prioritise context, in a bid to deliver more relevant results for every search. In 2018, the search engine giant introduced BERT – Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers – into its ranking algorithm. This places more importance than ever on meaning. As a result, the more information that Google has about a web page, the more it understands the context of the page, and the more likely it is to promote it in the SERPs.

Hoe does it benefit Shopify sellers

Structured data has fast become a strategic necessity in e-commerce development, with Google promoting a selection of marked-up pages with Featured Snippets. A Featured Snippet is an enhanced search result that provides users with additional information about the product above and beyond the title, URL, and meta description. Depending on the type of content, a Featured Snippet can include price data, real-time inventory updates, customer review ratings, and product visuals in Google Images.

So… how does structured data benefit Shopify sellers? Here are just a few examples:

  • A Featured Snippet can drive higher-quality traffic to your Shopify store by providing core information at SERPs level. Users who choose to click through have already had their initial questions answered through the snippet, making them more likely to convert on-page.
  • A Featured Snippet can boost SERPs ranking and increase the visibility of your Shopify store. Research shows that around 30% of Featured Snippets are pulled from positions 4 – 71, meaning that even those product pages that have struggled to compete have a chance to be seen.
  • Structured data isn’t just about visibility and conversions; it can also bring benefits at operational level. Incorporating it provides a solid framework for new product launches, providing a checklist-style guide for information input and ensuring consistency in data.

How do I use structured data?

The go-to option for getting started with structured data is to use any one of the many Shopify apps that organise and collate your product data for you. However, it’s important to remember that apps with third party scripts can affect Shopify store performance. If you’re keen to maintain speed and quality to create a seamless and satisfactory user experience, this may not be the most suitable approach.

Structured data processes can be implemented independently, although it’s not always easy to get right. Google prefers structured data in the complex JSON-LD format. It also has a long list of strict structured data guidelines and criteria that must be met in order for a page to be eligible. The simplest and most risk-free solution is to work with experienced Shopify support experts. They’re skilled in bringing the benefits of it to Shopify sellers, without compromising on performance.

Ready to get started?

Structured data is one of the most effective and efficient ways to promote products, attract higher quality leads, and boost the online visibility of your Shopify store. Sign up for the #ShopBuddy newsletter to receive the latest Shopify headlines by email, or contact us to learn more about optimising your store.

By Mladen Gorchev

Article image by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

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