Optimizing your Shopify meta tags is a key component of your store’s SEO strategy.
The meta description, for example, is the first impression visitors get from your website—before they even click your link.
When it comes to Shopify stores, this is even more important. Search results are akin to shop windows, and your meta tags (title, description, etc.) need to shine to grab the customer’s attention.
So how do you go about optimizing meta tags?
This is what this blog post is all about. Let’s dive straight into it!
No time to read the whole post?
Download this meta tag optimization checklist and start editing your Shopify meta tags right away.
As a bonus—my infographic is included in the checklist!
What are meta tags?
Let’s start with the basics. What are meta tags for, and how do they impact your SEO strategy?
As with many things related to search engine optimization, meta tags help your visitors (and Google) understand what they might expect to find on your website.
Let’s take my homepage as an example:
TapTimize | SERP Tracker & Keyword Rank Tracking, contains two words that describe what my tool does.
If a Google user searches for
backlink tracker instead, and my homepage somehow appears in the search results, the user will have a look at the title, understand that my page is irrelevant, and won’t click on the link.
As a result, Google will make sure my page doesn’t rank for
backlink tracker anymore.
You can easily check a page’s meta tags by right-clicking on the page and selecting the option “View page source”.
If you then search for the
<meta> tag, you may find something like this:
<meta charset="utf-8"><title>TapTimize | SERP Tracker & Keyword Rank Tracking</title> <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0"> <meta name="description" content="TapTimize is a SERPtracker and keyword rank tracking tool designed with simplicity in mind. Track your SERPs & manage your SEO.">
You are already familiar with the
description tags. But what is a
viewport—and are there any other meta tags you should know about?
There’s actually a fairly long list of meta tags…
…but don’t worry: we’ll examine that list together, and most of those are either deprecated or useless for your Shopify store.
Now that you have a good idea of what meta tags are for, let’s look into how you can add them to Shopify and how you can optimize them.
How to add meta tags to Shopify
Shopify makes it easy for you to add or edit your meta tags.
Head over to your Shopify admin (
Under the Products and Online Store menus, you’ll find the following sections:
If you want to add a title and meta description to one of your products, for example, go to
All products, choose any product and scroll all the way down:
From there on, it’s as easy as any text editor.
If you want to edit meta tags for your homepage, you’ll have to head to the
Optimizing your meta titles
Optimizing your meta titles is not exactly rocket science.
It’s more about following a set of rules to make sure your site appears as attractive as possible in Google’s search results.
Remember: this is not only about getting found, it’s also about your click-through rate. There’s no point making sure your best keywords are in your
<title> tag if no one will click through to your site anyway.
1) The optimal length for your
<title> tag is under 60 characters. Google will show between 55 and 65 characters and truncate the rest (for a maximum of 600 pixels).
As Moz indicates in their own study, some characters take more space than others:
2) Place your most important keywords at the start of your
<title> tag. It is believed that Google puts more weight on the first 8 keywords of the
A good format for your title tags for a Shopify product page, for example, could look like this:
[Product name / primary keyword] [Product attributes / secondary keyword] | [Brand name / website name] Arabica Coffee high intensity | OnlineCoffeeShop.com
3) Don’t stuff your
<title> tag with as many keywords as possible. It doesn’t look good, and it isn’t descriptive. Neither your visitors nor Google will like this and it will result in terrible click-through rates.
4) Craft an enticing call-to-action. If you are selling products, most of your pages will be in direct competition with very similar ones. Make yours stand out from the crowd. For example:
Arabica Coffee | One day delivery, money back guarantee
Want to go one step further? Ignite Visibility recommends including emojis in your titles. This will work particularly well if you are trying to sell to a younger audience.
Note: Google doesn’t support all emojis and may decide not to include your emoji if they deem it irrelevant to the query.
Arabica Coffee | One day delivery, money back guarantee ☕
I recommend Emojipedia for a list of emojis and how they will look on different devices / browsers.
Optimizing your meta descriptions
The process of optimizing a meta description is very similar to that of the
<title> tag. And much like the
<title> tag, Google does not use the meta description as part of their ranking algorithm (again: none of the meta tags directly influence your SEO).
Your goal, as always, will be to increase your click-through rate. Here are a few tips to achieve that:
1) The optimal length for your meta description is between 50 and 160 characters. Once again, Google will truncate any description above ~155-160 characters.
2) Include your most important target keywords. Because the meta description isn’t part of the ranking algorithm doesn’t mean you shouldn’t put any relevant keywords in there.
Check out this snippet from my guide on Shopify loading speed optimization:
My query here was
improve shopify page speed. If you look at the meta description, you’ll notice that some words are formatted in bold.
Thanks to a natural language processing technique called latent semantic indexing, Google creates buckets of keywords that share a similar meaning.
In the example above, my query doesn’t contain
improving, but it does contain
improve—which is why its synonyms are highlighted in the meta description.
Compare my snippet to this one:
One snippet clearly stands out from the other—and the highlighted words are another way for Google to draw attention to your website.
3) Make it actionable. Tell your users to click on the link. Phrases like learn more or read the article work well. If it’s a product you’re trying to sell, you can try other phrases the likes of get it here.
What about other meta tags?
There are two more meta tags that matter,
<meta charset> and
You shouldn’t worry about optimizing them as Shopify already takes care of this for you.
<meta charset> tag simply relays information about the character set in use.
<meta name="viewport"> gives your visitor’s browser instructions on how to control the page’s dimensions and scaling, which is important if your website is optimized for mobile (like most Shopify stores nowadays!).
If for any reason your charset or viewport are not set, you’ll receive a warning in your Google Search Console with instructions on how to fix it.
There are no other meta tags that may cause an issue with your SEO in general.
But what about this huge list you showed earlier?
Well, these meta tags exist, but they are—in the words of Google—a waste of space. You may have heard of
generator: don’t worry about them.
As long as your titles and descriptions are properly optimized, your meta tags are fine!
Examples of great meta tag descriptions
Need inspiration? Look no further.
Here are a few eCommerce stores that are doing great with their meta tag descriptions.
I want to list a few examples and point out what they’re doing right—so that you can replicate these results for your store.
Example #1: Buddyburst
Besides the spelling mistake (eco-frendly), Buddyburst is doing an excellent job at communicating their USP (unique selling proposition) in the first few words.
Although my query was just
coffee cup, I can see the terms
reusable being a concern for their target audience.
Placing those terms at the start of the meta description will help draw attention to the snippet and encourage the user to read further.
The second part of the first sentence, “made from natural bamboo and corn fibres”, answers one of the user’s potential questions about the product before they click-through.
If every snippet about coffee cups was as informative as this, there would be a lot less back-and-forth between Google and different sites—which is good for everyone, and especially for Google as it makes for a great user experience on their site.
The second line,
Wholesale orders. Custom-printed with your business logo and branding. contains additional information and options about the product for users with specific wishes and helps increase the snippet’s click-through rate.
Example #2: Aveda
Aveda starts off with a strong statement about the quality of their shampoo.
They then remove any worry the user may have about this type of product: the “will this work for me?” question is answered from the get-go (“every hair care need”).
Finally, Aveda ends the copy with an excellent power word,
Find, and insists that they have a shampoo for every kind of hair—although it is also fairly obvious that they are targeting several keywords in here.
Example #3: Corsair
Corsair puts the emphasis on the variety of products they have to offer, inviting the user to browse their website.
Much like Aveda, Corsair highlights the fact that they have a product for everyone (“whatever genre you play”).
MMO help the page rank for a few additional keywords and help remove friction.
Infographic: How to Optimize Your Meta Tags
(Hint: click on the image to enlarge it!)
I hope this blog post helped you to learn more about meta tags and how you can optimize them to your advantage.
If you liked the article, please let me know.
Participate in the discussion in the comments section below and let me know what I should write about next!