How to measure the effectiveness of JSON-LD for SEO for Shopify

A JSON-LD for SEO customer emailed me with a fantastic set of questions about the app and how to measure its improvement to your store.

Could you write an article on what and how to measure the value of installing your app?
If it’s traffic, how do we know traffic has actually increased since this number will fluctuate each day and how do we know it’s a result of JSON-LD for SEO? My business has seasonal sales and therefore traffic will vary from month to month.
If it’s conversion rate, how do we measure or calculate this (i.e. where in GA and/or Shopify analytics)? How do we know it’s a result of your app?
What other items should we look at so we can see that your app was effective?

Measuring any of this stuff with a high degree of certainty is hard. Very, very hard.

The reason why it’s so difficult is that it’s impossible to test a store with and without the app installed. Also since every store is different and has different mixes of marketing, it’s really difficult to pinpoint exactly who and what was responsible for an improvement.

Here are a few places to start.

1. The main result the app should give you is Rich Results. The most important one for e-commerce is Product Rich Results. The best way to easily see all your Product Rich Results is to use a special search which is faster than trying keywords and searching page by page.

Uncover all of your Shopify store’s rich snippets with this one search

2. Another result you might experience is your Google Merchant Center ads are approved more easily. This is especially the case if in the past you received a Mismatched Pricing Error in Merchant Center. The app provides the structured data Merchant Center needs as part of its validation process so if that’s working correctly, there’s something JSON-LD for SEO is providing for you.

If you do see errors in your Merchant Center, check my Shopify and Google Merchant Center guide. It outlines most of the common errors and how to fix them. The majority of them come from your theme, your product data feed, or missing product data in Shopify.

3. With those two easy measurements down, now we get into the more difficult metrics.

Ideally, the app will help you get Rich Results, which would lead to better-looking search results, which would lead to more visitors clicking your result, which would lead to more traffic and possibly more sales.

In reality, things are rarely this clear.

For this third result, you want to see how your organic traffic has changed.

A good place to check is your Google Analytics account and look at your Acquisition section to find the organic traffic. There are infinite numbers of things that will impact organic traffic but you might be able to spot a trend. Since Google’s Rich Results are delayed, you’ll want to start looking at the traffic 5 or 6 weeks after you installed JSON-LD for SEO.

4. Another place to look at your traffic improvements is in Google Search Console. Search Console is at best a few days behind and I have a hard time relying on Search Console as it often misreports performance. But, it may give you a general idea of the before and after impacts.

Look at the Performance section of Search Console.

This report will show you want keywords you’re ranking for, where you’re ranking, how much traffic they’ve sent, and the click-through rate (CTR).

Rich Results won’t impact your ranking but because they are more visual than regular results, you should be able to see an increase in the level of traffic and click-through rate.

You’ll want to look at a bunch of different keywords that correspond to your products to get a complete picture of your changes over time. Also, the click-through data on this report will show you things you can’t find anywhere else.

5. Finally another place you can look at is your store’s overall conversion rate. Ideally you’ll want to use a tool like Google Analytics or Shopify’s Analytics where you can see the traffic source but if you can’t, you’ll just want to take what you see with a grain of salt.

Ideally you’ll see an increase in the conversion rate for organic traffic. That will be because search engine visitors who saw your products in Google along with the price, availability, and reviews would visit knowing more about your product than your regular site visitor.

Your average order size is indifferent to Rich Snippets.

Those five places are how you could measure the effectiveness of JSON-LD for SEO in your Shopify store. I started with the easier options at the top so you can budget your time accordingly.

All of these are subject to other changes you make in your store, market cycles, what your competitors do, what Google does, the phase of the moon, etc.

Even something simple like adding a new collection could have major unintended impacts to JSON-LD for SEO and your SEO in-general if you accidentally invalidated all of your existing urls in Google.

Today would be a good day to Install JSON-LD for SEO if you haven’t yet.

You still have a couple of months before the holiday season. Just enough time to start getting Rich Snippets and beating your competition in the search results.

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Get more organic search traffic from Google without having to fight for better rankings by utilizing search enhancements called Rich Results.

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