Doing a quick 20 mins of keyword analysis for this Shopify Site showed that it is leaving $12,497 on the table every single month. That’s almost $150K a year. The funny thing is, most marketers or agencies don’t even spend 20 mins on real keyword analysis.

Keyword Research Shopify Monthly Value

Ok, let's rewind 20 mins. I am going to pick a random Shopify site and set a 20-minute timer to make this a challenge. How am I going to pick a random Shopify site? I did this by downloading a list of 3000 sites using shopify, and then picking a random number between 1 and 3,000.

Ok so the site sells (drum roll please): Morale Patches and it’s a fairly new site. Cool, let’s get started (this was the 3rd random site I actually picked shhhhhh- but I swear still random!)

What is Keyword Research for Shopify?

Keywords help us find out what people are actually searching for. The research part is figuring out if that keyword is right for our site to focus on. This is why competitor analysis can’t be separated from keyword analysis.

Let's talk about the tools I use to do keyword research:

SEMRush: For a general overview of competitors, and keyword ideas.

Google Keyword Planner: Actual information of each keyword. Along with trends.

Google: To see competition- just as a sanity check. Also, to see the People also Ask section.

And lastly a google extension like Mozbar to see Domain Authority for a website.

Lets get back to that shopify site keyword research. Ok so Morale patches are embroidered or woven patches worn on clothing, commonly seen in the military, to express identity or team spirit. The most obvious keyword for me to start with is … “Morale Patches”.

Keyword Research for Shopify example Morale Patches

My Step-By-Step Keyword Research Process:

Step 1) Search Volume: How many people are searching for this each month. Secondary: look at trends to see if this is growing, cyclical, declining, or stable.
Step 2) Competition: Who is ranking in the first page for this search. Are they easy pickings or digital giants? Either easy, medium, or difficult.
Step 3) Ideas: How would we win this keyword if we decide to include it? What are the ideas?
Step 4) Should we include: If it passes my internal criteria of a winnable keyword, then we include this keyword.
Step 5) Find the next keyword: Look at what keywords the competition is ranking for, or we can get more specific, broader, or jump to a different lane and analyze that further.
Then, back to step 1.

So, for Morale Patches there is actually a LARGE search volume which is good. 14,800 searches per month for morale patch or morale patches. Also, the results in the top 10 are not too crazy. I think we could beat some of these out. I would put it as medium difficulty.

 Keyword Volume Trend PPC Cost Difficulty Idea
morale patches 14,800 Stable $.33 - 1.66 Medium On Page SEO & Backlinks. 1 High Quality Content piece with on what is Morale Patches. 


How to add SEO keywords to Shopify

Once we finalize a keyword we need to come up with ideas on how to win that keyword. So for morale patches, we could probably win this through On Page SEO, Backlinks, 1 High quality content piece on what is Morale Patches. Possibly a YouTube video. This is probably the north star we want to reach. 100% finalized.

Shopify Competitor Analysis

I can see that a website which started just 1.5 years ago is ranking very high and getting 10,000+ organic visitors already in this space. The content on this site is not too overwhelming (only about 15 articles/blogs) and I think we can beat this competitor out.

What keywords is this competitor ranking for? I can see military hat. Now this is an example of a related keyword – I don’t think our Shopify site sells this. However, I think consumers searching for military hat could also be interested in morale patches as well.

Now, I am analyzing the first ranking site for morale patches- which is a Shopify site. They have a large number of products. Over 100 pages just dedicated to morale patches. But no blogs and not a large amount of SEO done on the site. Ok I’ve got about 13 mins left.

What are the key takeaways when I do this:

The first time that I do keyword analysis for a client, it is to see if SEO is a valid strategy to really get any ROI on for this Shopify site. When is SEO not a viable option for a Shopify site?

  • Only Branded searches: Let’s say you are working on a Shopify site that purely sells a lifestyle/brand. In this case the only searches people will have will be your brand. Doing simple on page SEO should be enough to make sure you show up for branded searches.
  • Competition is too high: You are selling something in a very competitive space that already has a lot of large players. An example could be TVs. Having us rank high or find words that people are searching for which haven’t already been answered is pretty difficult.
  • Too niche: Sure, we can try to rank high for this and it might be easier than other places, but it’s probably easier just to do google ads and win this outright. Maybe the cost of SEO is not worth the return of ranking high with such few people searching for it.

So, the timer has run out and this is what I have so far- 9 keywords and some ideas about how we would go about winning those.

 Keyword Volume Trend PPC Cost Difficulty Idea
morale patches 14,800 Stable $0.33 - 1.66 Medium On Page SEO & Backlinks. 1 High Quality Content piece with on what is Morale Patches. 
funny morale patches 1,300 Stable (slight growth) $0.29 - 1.64 Easy Collection Page & Blog
morale patches velcro 1,600 Stable $0.37 - 1.75 Medium Collection Page
what is a morale patch? Included in morale patches Stable Easy Same as morale patches
custom morale patches 1,000 Stable $1.01 - 3.90 Hard New Landing page where user can send a description
military morale patch 590 Stable $0.36 - 1.68 Easy Collection Page & Blog around famous military morale patches
velcro patches 22,200 Stable (slight growth) $0.35 - 1.73 Medium Collection Page & Blog
What is the military hat called? 8,100 (People Also Ask) Stable (slight decline) $0.27 - 1.09 Easy Large Blog (possible YT video)
What is an army hat called? 6,600 (People Also Ask) Stable (slight decline) $0.25 - 1.34 Easy Large Blog (possible YT video)


My thoughts: Honestly this is a pretty great niche. If I was just starting a simple dropshipping site this would be an awesome niche to get into. Fairly easy competitors. None are super SEO experienced. Also, Google ads seem cheap enough which is good.

With only these 9 keywords I am predicting that we get 499 new customers each month for this niche. This has a few assumptions on conversion rates, but I think it is a pretty reasonable guess since most people searching for morale patches are high converting customers.

 Keyword Research Conversion Value

Where to put SEO keywords in Shopify?

There is no one location to put these keywords. Instead these keywords are a guiding light for us to use when doing On Page SEO, Content ideas, Backlink anchor text, & general SEO. 

Just like Abe Lincoln Said: "Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe", we should spend ample time in the analysis side before getting started. How do you do your keyword analysis?

PS- I think 4 hours to sharpen an axe is a little bit crazy.

September 26, 2023 — Vineet Baid

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