Should You Use Product Tags on Shopify? Are They SEO Friendly?

Product tags are keywords for product identification. They are used to sort the products by a certain feature and to enable a specific, narrow product search. For example, if you sell apparel, and you want to create tags for T-shirts, it can be “t-shirt”, “cotton”, “polo”, etc.

One thing to keep in mind with any theme that uses Product Tags for sorting on the front end by the customer. The way Shopify works results in all of the Product Tags being seen by Google as individual pages, and these are dynamically generated.

So if you have and you use tags, you can use those tags to sort the products into a “sub-collection”. A dynamically-generated page is created for EACH tag, such as:

Only these dynamically-generated pages all have exactly the same content as the main collection page. And it could be a situation where Google sees them as a duplicate content.

I know on my shop, Google was returning ONLY the tag pages in search results, and my Product and Collection pages were nowhere to be seen (although they were indeed indexed — just not displayed as a search result). Search engine result listings for my shop were flooded with those useless, dynamically-generated, duplicate-content tag pages. My products and collections were not just buried, but non-existent in the listings due to this.

I had to add some custom code to the theme to noindex all of those dynamically-generated tag pages. And ironically, you have to find a workaround to get Goole to see the updated pages with the noindex code because due to the noindex code, you can’t manually resubmit them in Google Search Console!

I did see a massive improvement in my search engine result listings (products and category pages were now being returned, not the dynamically-generated tag pages) after doing this.

I have no idea why Shopify coders would do things this way, or at the least have a toggle to noindex tag pages or any other dynamically-generated pages that could result in the appearance of duplicate content.

Google states that “it will eventually figure this kind of stuff out”, but I’d rather not even have it be an issue at all. And in my case, Goole was not “figuring it out eventually”.

The code is so simple to add, it should just be a thing to include in any Shopify theme. Mind-boggling why they would not include this as an option.

So while the tags themselves may be SEO searchable, be forewarned that they do other things to your site and how it’s perceived by the Google spiders and indexers.

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