How to Manage Shopify Blogs July 21, 2014 03:00
While Shopify is great for managing products, orders, and other store functions, blogging with Shopify can be a bit of a drag. The blogging interface isn’t incredibly intuitive, and the experience isn’t geared towards serial writers. However, understanding the way Shopify blogs work can be very helpful and alleviate some of the issues while blogging using Shopify.
Why Should I Blog?
First of all, let’s back up for a second. Why do you even need to blog in the first place? It helps out your store in a couple of ways.
Search engines index content – meaning words. When people are searching via Google or Bing, they’re entering strings of words – content – to search for. The more high-quality content you have in your store, the better off your chances are of being found via search traffic. Blog as often as you can, and make sure the posts are original and high quality. The stores I love most usually blog about once a week.
So what if you don’t get a lot of search traffic, or you have plenty of traffic from other referrers? Blogging is still important for your shop.
Having a blog helps you to develop a relationship with your customers. It gives them a chance to get to know you and to trust you. It also gives you an opportunity to interact with them in the comments section of your blog. This can be extremely important in helping you understand what issues your customers experience or to get feedback on your products or service.
This kind of relationship is key to building a brand, not just a company. Blog so that you can establish who you are, build trust and relationships, and help your customers find information they need or could benefit from.
Manage Shopify Blogs
So let’s talk about how to manage Shopify blogs to make your writing experience easier. First of all, your blog is located in your Shopify admin under “Blog Posts”. If you’ve never done this before, you currently have a default blog. It’s probably called “News”.
Shopify lets you have multiple blogs in your store. This can actually be pretty helpful, as this allows you to categorize the information in your blog. You can have blogs for announcements and news, images of your products in action, customer stories, tips and tutorials, and more. To create and manage these blogs, you can click on the “Manage Blogs” button in the top right corner:
This will take you to a list of all of your blogs. You can edit the default “News” blog from here, or add your own new blogs. When you do, you’ll be able to set a name and description, as well as manage comments. I recommend allowing comments, but moderating them. This allows customers to interact with you and ask questions.
In the world of eCommerce where we don’t always get direct interaction, blog comments can be immensely valuable. You can learn what your customers like or what they’re searching for, and can get feedback from them. You can also build a community around your products to create brand loyalty and turn your customers into advocates.
Once you’ve created your blog, you can save your changes. If you ever want to delete this blog, you can Manage Shopify Blogs from the same button, then click on this blog. There’s now a “Delete” button in the bottom left corner.
Once you’ve set up your blogs, you can start adding posts. From the “Blog Posts” page, you can click “Add Post” in the top right. This will take you to the page where you’ll write your post. From here, you can add blog post titles, edit your content, change the author or the blog that the post should go under, and add some tags.
This is where blogging breaks down for me. I don’t like how small the content field is for my posts – for anything but an announcement, I’m scrolling through my post for about a hundred years to edit it. Not so fun.
However, it is really handy to be able to add images, tables, and more. I also like being able to add my own excerpts (which you should do as a “teaser” for the blog post, unless your first couple of paragraphs suffice.
While being able categorize posts into separate blogs is really handy, you don’t have any other way to categorize posts except for your tags. For example, you can’t have categories for “New Products” or “Contest Winners” within an “Announcements” blog.
Finally, when you’re done writing, be sure to add a search engine title and meta description – this will show up in search results, so you should ensure that this is clear and concise. When you’re done with this, you can save and publish your post!
You can always go back and edit your posts as needed from your Shopify admin, as well as manage comments to delete anything that’s spam or inappropriate. You can also use posts to simply create entries for product images with captions, helpful videos, or other sorts of microblogging posts (kind of like using a “Photos” blog like Instagram). This way, you present your customers with several different kinds of content and they can choose what they want to check out.
Don’t forget the navigation!
Lastly, make sure customers can find your blogs. You’ll probably want to go to “Navigation” in your Shopify admin and add a blog to your main navigation. You can link to one blog, and intro blog, or create a dropdown under “Blog” to show all of your separate blogs. If you want to take the dropdown route, I’d recommend following this very helpful Shopify tutorial to do so.
Taking Blogging a Step Further
There are lots of other great blogging platforms out there (WordPress, Tumblr, Medium, and others). The goods news is that you can blog with your favorite platform and sell with Shopify. That’s why we built BlogFeeder. You can automatically import posts from your favorite blogging platform into the Shopify blog of your choice without lifting a finger. This way, customers will still be able to view your blog on your site, but you can blog on a platform that’s easier to use.