Why Google hates soup in your Shopify theme
Think back to the last time you had soup.
Not the creamy kind, but the one with different vegetables floating around in a broth.
That’s how Google and other search engines see every page of your Shopify store.
There are a few good things in it but you have to really dig around and look.
In fact, web developers joke that bad HTML is called tag soup.
Picture the Google crawler as a slotted spoon that comes along now and then to scoop out a cup of your soup.
They might find a carrot and some celery. Good stuff but not very filling.
So Google updates the search index and notes down that your store is "carrots and celery".
Next time they come by they scoop out only a small potato. Guess that page should be reclassified as a "potato" page. No carrots here.
This is why SEO can be tricky. Google’s not seeing the whole picture of what your soup (page) is.
Structured data on the other hand helps Google.
Instead of Google scooping out random bits of your soup, you scoop it out for them. Since you know your site you can make sure that there is a carrot, celery, mushroom, potato, and a lovely bit of greens in the cup.
A complete and balanced representation of your soup.
Google then compares what’s in your cup (structured data) and what it’s seeing in the soup as a whole (your page) and comes to the conclusion that your page is a good place to find a carrot, celery, mushroom, potato, and green.
This soup scooping process is why having structured data for your site helps Google to help you.
Google has a better idea about the page. Google has a better index built. Google’s users can find more valuable pages. You get more of those visitors. You get more customers.
Completely white-hat and above the board.
(Unless you’re lying about your soup and spiking it with something extra for Google which is a big no-no. Google does not like added salt or hot sauce in it’s soup, thank you very much).
Creating a complete listing of what’s in your soup, er um… on your page is the goal of my JSON-LD for SEO app. It automatically adds structured data about your business, products, and blog posts to your store so Google can scoop it out.