Showit is a website drag & drop platform that has been around for years. Although it was originally developed with photographers in mind, service based businesses (and even e-commerce businesses) are using the intuitive platform to create websites. Creatives are drawn to the platform because of how flexible the platform can be design-wise. The platform itself almost feels like another Adobe application so creatives that are used to Adobe products tend to find Showit easy and intuitive. But just because a website is beautiful doesn’t mean it will rank on Google. So the question is: Is Showit good for SEO?
There are many factors that involve ranking on Google (as so many people who focus on SEO know) but does Showit work for ranking? Can you really have a BEAUTIFUL website that ranks #1 on Google?
The short answer is yes, Showit can be good for SEO. In fact, Showit websites sometimes rank higher than other websites on similar drag & drop platforms.
The long answer isn’t as simple. In this post I’ll go over how to implement strong SEO on your Showit website and my opinion on Showit SEO in general. Just a fair warning that I am a Showit designer so I do have some bias when it comes to Showit.
When it comes to SEO, there are several factors to take a look at including: how title, alt, & description tags work in Showit, how Showit integrates with WordPress, and how Showit elements populate code on the backend.
I’ll be referencing the Fuel Your Photos SEO for Showit Guide throughout this blog post so make sure to take a look at it for some great SEO guidance if you’re developing your own site in Showit.
With Showit’s new changes to adding DNS records, you’ll need to request that they add an SSL certificate to your website. An SSL certificate is basically added protection for your hosting that gives you the “lock” icon next to your domain name and adds security. Websites without an SSL certificate give attacker warnings in Google Chrome and show as “not secure.” Google will penalize your ranking if your website does not have an SSL certificate, so make sure to contact the Showit team when you launch your website to add one!
Once you launch your website, you’ll want to connect Google Analytics & set up Search Console. These are tools used to measure your sites traffic and conversion success overall. Google Search Console is the tool business owners use to track traffic in relation to keywords and searches in Google. It is imperative that you get both of these tools set up as soon as you launch your website for best results.
To set up Google Analytics in your Showit account click “Site Settings” on the left-hand side.
When you go to set up your Google Analytics account, you’ll find a “Measurement ID” that you’ll need to place in the settings in Showit. This hooks your Google Analytics account to your website. Once you get everything set up on Google Analytics, create a property in Google Search Console. You’ll then have the option to connect your Search Console to Google Analytics. Whether or not you connect the two (you should but I digress) you’ll be able to start tracking where your traffic is coming from.
To learn more about how to set up Google Analytics and Google Search Console, go to Google’s help center.
The first way to do on-page SEO is under “SEO Settings” on the right-hand side of the your pages. This is where you should include your page title (keep it under 60 characters!) and a meta description. Make sure your meta description is between 50–160 characters to be SEO friendly.
Make sure you include share images for all pages you might share on social media. These are the images that will populate next to the link when you share it on say, Facebook.
Under the “Advanced Settings” tab you have the option to hide the page from Google and add any additional code that you might need on your page. It is important to note that if you decide to hide a page from Google, people can still access that page, but won’t find it on Google Search itself.
Whenever you upload images to Showit, it’s imperative that they are the smallest file size possible. When I say this, I don’t mean uploading a 10kb photo as a background image. Small images ARE important for site speed & loading time, but your images should still be crisp and clear. So try and keep your images below 300kb and at least 2500px on the long edge. If clarity isn’t a huge deal for your business (it would be if you’re a photographer) than you can play with the size and compression of your images to suite what your website needs. Just make sure they are always under 300kb.
You can compress your images in many different ways. My favorite ways to do it are to run the photos through Photoshop (exporting for web of course) and then running them through Shortpixel. This ensures that my photos are high quality, but at the smallest file size possible. Another tip that I have that helps with compression and site speed is to upload photos at exactly the size you want them to be. This means if you want a horizontal image on the screen, upload the exact dimensions of it. This will make it easier to compress your images and removes additional coding that slows down your site. Keep in mind that this is a very minimal thing that doesn’t need to get done but still helps.
According to Fuel Your Photos, Google prioritizes descriptions over titles and including titles can be repetitive and add verbiage that Google doesn’t want. This is why when you’re doing image SEO, you need to JUST include a description and leave the title blank. This also applies to gallery photos.
When writing your photo descriptions, it’s important to be clear and concise without keyword stuffing. Google knows when you’re keyword stuffing so just write exactly what the image is about and nothing more.
Keep SEO in mind whenever you start creating copy for your website. Generally, each of your pages will include one H1 tag, multiple scenarios of H2 tags, and paragraph tags. Your general structure for each page will vary, but should generally look like this:
Keep in mind that Google reads your website from top to bottom and doesn’t know the hierarchy of your site by design. It only knows the hierarchy by the tags you assign each text box. This means that when you apply tags, think about the outline of your site to highlight importance.
Now that we’ve covered the basics for on-page SEO on Showit, let’s talk about designing. Showit is loved for it’s easy-to-use platform and the beautiful designs that come with it. But sometimes beauty adds unnecessary additional code that you could do without. This is why when you’re designing on Showit, it’s best to design with SEO in mind.
One of Showit’s unique features is Canvas Views. Canvas Views allow for unique functionality and creatives ways of doing things. The only problem with them… they sometimes hide important text from Google that might end up ranking your site lower than it should. Google only reads text in the first Canvas View and moves on. This means that if you have important text on Canvas View 2 that you need to rank, Google won’t see it. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use Canvas views, it’s just important to be aware of what they do for your ranking.
One thing I hate about Showit is that the order on the screen does not match the backend code that Showit generates. This is arguably one of the most important things to think about when creating your Showit site. Most people forget about the actual order of the objects in each canvas, but it’s so important to set it up correctly so Google can accurately crawl your site.
If you look at the left-hand side of the image above, you’ll notice that the stacking order looks like this:
This list is exactly what Google will see. They won’t see your design, or the layout of your site, they’ll only see the stacking and hierarchy with the text tags. This is why it’s SO important to edit your stacking order by dragging elements in the correct spots. It’ll help Google read your site correctly, and give it a better understanding of what your site is all about.
It’s also important to add objects based on how Google will read your website so that means not using multiple fonts on the same line or in the same sentence. In this instance, I separated “Hey there,” and “I’m Meg!” Ideally these would be on the same line but I decided to sacrifice one aspect of SEO for the sake of design. It’s all up to you or your designer, but usually you won’t want to break up sentences. This habit is actually very popular amongst Showit designers so if you work with a designer be sure to remind them of the best SEO practices!
When you’re designing in Showit, you might be tempted to duplicate certain elements to get the right design on each end. Try not to duplicate elements because Google might read them twice. When in doubt, it’s okay to sacrifice design for SEO if you’re serious about ranking on Google.
Google has come out to say that they prioritize mobile over desktop. This mean it’s possible that Google might miss something you have on desktop if it’s hidden on mobile. Keep this in mind while designing your site.
Blogging isn’t always essential, however it helps significantly when it comes to ranking on Google. Google prioritizes new and updated content which makes a lot of sense! In order to be relevant to Google, you need to constantly be uploading new content and updating your website but for service providers this can prove to be tricky.
Blogging is one of the BEST ways to add new content to your website, without needing to update your website constantly. That’s why if you’re seriously considering focusing on SEO you need to start blogging regularly. Whether you blog twice a week or once a month it’s important to remain consistent for your rankings to stay consistent.
If you don’t already know, Showit has partnered with WordPress for blogging. This means that you can create blog posts, use WordPress plugins, and even create pages on WordPress. WordPress is what gives Showit much more power when it comes to SEO and it’s important to understand all the kinks to develop a powerful Showit site with WordPress blogging.
When you start blogging on Showit, you need to change your permalink settings to show only the post name without the date.
As highlighted on the image above, you’ll need to change your settings to only include the post name. This is because Google prioritizes new content, so if your post actively shows the date in the link and the date is from over a year ago, your ranking will likely drop.
Niel Patel from Ubersuggest has actually tested this theory out. When he changed his permalinks to just show the post name, his rankings seriously increased. And he’s the pro when it comes to SEO.
If you haven’t already downloaded Yoast SEO for your Showit blog then nows the time to do it. Yoast is an amazing plugin that helps you keep track of your keywords and input titles and meta descriptions. You should absolutely be using Yoast for SEO on all of your posts. (I even have Yoast open for this blog post!)
The amazing part about Showit integrating with WordPress is that you can create pages in WordPress. WordPress uses Showit like a theme, which means you can create your page in Showit & create a blank page with the same title in WordPress and the page will be on WordPress but populate the design from the Showit end.
What’s the benefit of creating pages in WordPress instead of Showit you may ask? Yoast SEO (yet again.) Yoast generates code in the head of your page that is consistent and overall better than what Showit generates. This means that you can clean up clunky code from Showit without having to switch platforms.
Showit considers creating pages in WordPress “Advanced” but it’s fairly easy once you get the hang of it. I highly recommend transferring your pages over from Showit to WordPress to get the added SEO benefit. Just remember that the SEO in the page settings will happen in Yoast on WordPress rather than in Showit.
Using Yoast is the same on both WordPress pages as it is in posts. The only main difference is that you don’t need to (and probably don’t want to) add a focus keyphrase on your WordPress pages. It’s not necessary and will give you a “red light” in Yoast that’s annoying to look at.
The long answer is yes, Showit IS in fact good for SEO. It might not be the best platform for SEO, but if you’re looking to hire a Showit designer so that you (or someone else) can manage the SEO, you’ll be on the path to ranking your website in the number one spot on Google.
If you’re looking to hire a Showit designer that knows her stuff when it comes to SEO consider hiring me! I’d love to connect with you to learn allll about your goals and desires for your brand new website.
I'm the founder of Meg an' Mango Studio, a brand & web studio for coaches and service-based business owners. I absolutely love spreading my knowledge to others so that you can easily learn what I spent years learning! Check me out on Instagram @meg.an.mango