Your Shopify store comes pre-installed with a basic blogging engine. You can add a blog in seconds and start publishing content to support your e-commerce goals. However...
...there might be better options available. Shopify‘s default blog editor is a little threadbare when it comes to features, which can limit the conversion potential of your blog.So what you can do instead is use an alternative blog editor such as Bloggle (Shopify app), or even switch to WordPress or Blogger for your e-commerce blogging needs.Let's dive a little deeper and explore Shopify’s blog options in more detail.
Yes, you can get your Shopify blog up and running in just a few clicks, and start publishing content straight away. Blogging on Shopify helps you generate sales, retain customers, and increase brand awareness, at zero additional cost.
Adding a blog to your Shopify store is really simple, just follow five steps:
If you’re more of a visual type, this GIF neatly summarizes the procedure.
For more detailed instructions, check out our article on how to add a blog on Shopify.
Shopify’s blog editor is fine for simple use cases, but as your e-commerce strategy becomes more complex, you’ll start running into problems.
These problems can cost you sales down the line, so it’s best to be aware of them upfront, and potentially switch to a more powerful blogging solution.
Here are the four most common problems with Shopify’s blog.
When you open Shopify’s blog post editor, the first thing that springs to mind is: wow, this feels pretty cramped.
The text box supports only 13 lines of text before before the user needs to scroll, which is way less than the length of a typical blog post. The limited space might be justified on mobile devices, but the editor maintains the same proportions on widescreen desktop PCs which wastes space, and limits usability.
Adding images or videos only compounds the issue. When images or video’s are present, you have about a single paragraph’s worth of text on the screen at any one time. This forces you to keep switching between the editor and the preview tab. Downright annoying for longer posts.
Shopify’s blog editor has a poor selection of featuress. You’re pretty much limited to using formatted text, lists, tables, images, and video. Certainly enough for basic blogging, but not much else.
The lack of interactive featuresis especially jarring. There are no options for adding CTA buttons, email sign-up forms, product listings, social media links or other e-commerce functionality.
Now, to be fair, you do have the option to switch to HTML view and add the missing featuresmanually. But this requires technical know-how, takes longer, and has the potential to create technical issues down the line.
Shopify lets you specify basic SEO parameters such as page title, description, and URL for each of your posts. It also provides a search engine listing preview, to give you an idea of how your posts may appear on Google.
But what it lacks is any meaningful feedback on the quality of your content in relation to SEO. The editor will not alert you if you leave the title and description fields empty, nor highlight common SEO mistakes such as keyword stuffing, duplicate content, mismatched titles or descriptions, etc.
In effect, Shopify is perfectly happy to let you shoot yourself in the foot by publishing content with limited organic reach. To our mind, this defeats the purpose of having a Shopify blog in the first place.
The final major issue with Shopify’s blog tools is limited options for managing content. Basically, you’re limited to filtering, sorting, tagging, publishing, and deleting multiple posts at once. Essential features to have to be sure, but not quite enough for serious e-commerce blogging.
The lack of ability to create blog post templates is especially noticeable. If you want to reuse the layout and content of an existing post, your only option is to copy-paste the relevant bits, which is far from ideal. There’s no option to clone existing posts either.
The aforementioned problems obviously lead many Shopify users to seek alternative solutions. So let’s examine the best available alternatives for blogging on Shopify.
Bloggle is the premium and best Shopify app for blogging. It addresses the problems with the native editor by providing advanced features and customization options while maintaining simplicity and ease-of-use. It is a complete replacement for the default Shopify blog.
Bloggle has an extensive list of features, including:
In many ways, Bloggle represents a straight upgrade over the default Shopify editor. It addresses all the major issues we talked about while adding a slew of additional features.
Let‘s do a quick comparison.
Bloggle uses a WYSIWYG editor, making it much easier to create blog posts with visual flair. The interface is responsive andintuitive, and makes use of your entire screen while editing. You can switch between mobile, desktop, and tablet views, to keep your content optimized for different screen sizes.
In terms of customization options, Bloggle clearly comes out ahead. You can add a whole range of advanced components to your posts, including product carousels, CTA buttons, tables of content, and others. Additionally, you can further customize each component by specifying custom margins, padding, borders, and background.
In terms of SEO, Bloggle strides ahead of the competition. The default editor covers only the bare necessities such as title and meta tags, whereas Bloggle provides a full SEO suggestion engine. As you add content to your posts, Bloggle provides feedback on each sentence and component, making it easy to implement changes on the spot.
Bloggle has a slight advantage over the native Shopify editor in terms of management features. The most notable difference is the ability to create templates from posts, which saves a lot of time when you‘re creating longer post chains. There‘s also the option to import and clone posts, so you have an easier time reusing content.
In terms of sheer numbers, WordPress is still the dominant player in the world of blogging. Together with the WooCommerce plugin, it is a viable alternative to Shopify as an e-commerce platform.
There’s also the option of using a WordPress blog together with a Shopify store, but more on that later.
WordPress and Shopify have different strengths and weaknesses in the sphere of e-commerce. Let’s go over the major points of contention.
As a shop first, and blogging platform second, Shopify comes out ahead when it comes to options for scaling your e-commerce operation. WooCommerce works well up to a point, but once you reach a certain threshold of products, customers, or transactions, it proves difficult to keep up.
WordPress clearly comes out ahead if we‘re talking about the default Shopify blogging engine. It comes with a better editor, more features, and more themes, making it easy to create your dream blog, provided you know what you‘re doing.
You can use Shopify and WordPress together to leverage the strengths of each platform. Or at least, that‘s how it should work in theory. In practice, there are major downsides to this combo.
First, you‘d be forced to host the WordPress blog on a Shopify subdomain. This has the unfortunate effect of splitting your traffic between the two domains, meaning a net loss in SEO overall.
Second, since you’ll be running two different CMS, there will be compatibility issues, subtle differences in design, and other problems associated with software integration.
Blogger is Google’s own blogging platform. It is a bit of an odd choice for a dedicated e-commerce blogging platform, but it can work in certain contexts.
Blogger is mostly used for small personal blogs, but it can work as a secondary or tertiary blog for your Shopify store.
The main benefit Blogger has over Shopify is built-in integration with Google Analytics. This makes it much easier to generate organic traffic for your brand. However, it doesn‘t do much to convert visitors into customers.
As an e-commerce tool, Blogger works best as your personal shoutbox. How does this benefit your Shopify store? By tapping into influencer marketing, and generating a buzz for your products via social media.
Blogging is a powerful channel for generating sales on Shopify. That said, the default Shopify blog editor is not always the ideal solution.
We’ve explored the main alternatives to the native editor, including Bloggle, our Shopify blogging app. If you feel that Shopify’s native blogging tools are not enough for building responsive and product-focused blog posts consider trying Bloggle for free for 10 days - no upfront payment required.
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If you're tired of wasting time and money on creating boring articles using the native Shopify blog feature, then try Bloggle. Our successful merchants have already made the switch and are reaping the benefits.
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