Why the target keyword feature in your Shopify app might do nothing
Recently Jessica asked:
I have a question of the Target Keyword for Google for each product. The REDACTED App sets a target KEYWORD for each product, but not too sure how they do it for Google to detect this product. Is it really necessary?
I don’t know what their Target Keyword feature does, as there isn’t anything in Google to tell Google you’re targeting a keyword. Google will read your content and links and use that to determine where your pages will show up.
Google discourages focusing on keywords in favor of creating quality content but the idea of keywords is so ingrained in their algorithm and SEO’s minds that it’s impossible to just ignore them.
A targeting keyword feature in an app could be something to help keep your stuff organized or it could do nothing at all.
One app I use on my WordPress site lets me enter a keyword I target. They then scan my title, url, and content and tell me if I’ve used my keyword in those places.
It acts as a software-powered checklist for when I’m creating content, but doesn’t actively do anything for SEO. Think of it like a spell-check tool.
I’ve seen other apps where you only enter the keyword so you can keep track of which keywords you’re targeting on each page. It’s basically a spreadsheet of data that doesn’t do anything, but the apps hype up the feature and make people think the app helps by submitting that data to Google.
And even worse are some apps that put your keywords into the public
meta keywords field. That field hasn’t been used by search engines for decades and is an easy way to give competitive intelligence to your competitors (aka bad idea).
Unlike keywords, one SEO feature that you want Google to know about is structured data.
Mostly because the data helps Google’s algorithm which makes their job easier.
You can either audit, code, and test your store’s structured data by hand or install JSON-LD for SEO and have the structured data you need for several types of Rich Results.
It’s already helped a few thousand Shopify stores with their structured data and it could help you too.