Collection Titles (page headlines) and Collection SEO

First, what’s a collection title?
(aka collection page headline)

A collection title (headline) is different from a collection SEO title

  • A collection title appears on the page in the content above the collection description and product grid. It’s sometimes called a headline because it appears as the primary headline (<h1> element) on the collection page. Here’s an example from The Chocolate Season.
  • collection SEO title appears in the search results. It doesn’t appear in the page content on a collection page.

These are two separate things. Each is very important for your collection SEO.

Why are collection titles important?
What are they good for?

Collection titles (what we in SEO call ‘page headlines’) are an essential SEO element. For Collection SEO, they’re a significant element. Collection titles are essential for humans + robots. Collection titles are like a sign for any visitors saying, “Hey, this is what this page is about! Expect more on this topic!” Collection titles are like the signage in a grocery store. If you have an aisle or section in your store full of groceries, cheeses, or decorative illustrated watercolor tea towels, you need signage saying, “This is what’s here.” That’s what a collection title is, like in the below image:

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Where do you edit the collection title?

You set the Collection Title while editing the collection, and the “Collection Title” field is at the top of the collection page editor.

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How much impact do collection titles
have on SEO and rankings?

Your Collection Titles (page headlines) have a lot of impact on your SEO. Google looks at a collection’s title (headline) to understand what that page is about. A relevant, short headline is a great way to help signal to Google, “This page is about this topic.”

A collection, in combination with an SEO Title and Collection Description, will be doing a lot of work to help your SEO.

Please don’t turn off collection titles in customizer! 🚨

I’ll often see Shopify stores that have decided to turn off the display of the Collection Title on the page. (Sometimes, those stores will also be missing Collection Descriptions on their collection pages.)

If you don’t have your Collection Titles turned on and displaying, you’re doing your customers and your store’s SEO a disservice. You’re missing important content.

A missing collection title does a lot to harm your collection’s SEO. Google reads the content on your page to understand what the page is about. You’re missing a powerful signal without a Collection TItle (headline). (And if your theme doesn’t display a collection title and description, you’re giving Google very little to work with.)

Bottom line: keep your Collection Title turned on and displaying to visitors. That’s an essential SEO element.

Note: sometimes ‘Collection Title
and ‘SEO Title’ interact in an odd way.

When you set a Collection Title, Shopify, by default, sets that title as the SEO title. That can occasionally cause some issues.

It’s natural to pick a shorter, more general phase as the collection title. It’s easier to say or read “Fudge” to describe that collection than “Handmade Artisinal Chocolate Fudge,” and it looks cleaner on the page for the headline to say “Fudge.” All of those are valid reasons.

But when it comes to SEO, more niche keywords are better. If your collection’s SEO title is just “Fudge,” you’ll struggle to rank for that competitive term.

As we discussed in the chapter on keyword research: more niche + long-tail keywords might get less traffic, but it’s easier to rank for those less-competitive phases, and the traffic often converts better.

If your collection title is a short, more general keyword like “Fudge,” then your SEO title should target a longer-tail keyword, like “Buy Handmade Artisanal Fudge”

Question: “Why don’t we just set the collection headline as the more niche, long-tail keyword? Wouldn’t that solve all of these problems?”

Shopify, out of the box, uses the Collection Title in a few other places. Here’s a partial list. Whatever you set your Collection TItle to shows up as:

  • The SEO title of the collection (unless you override this)
  • The breadcrumb text for the collection and products in the collection
  • The name of the collection in the navigation menus (unless you override this)
  • The name shown in the ‘featured collection’ sections throughout your site
  • How the Collection Title is used (and reused) differs from theme to theme.
For example, these featured collection widgets (from WeAreLakebound.org) display the Collection Title as the section text. If the Collection Title was set to a title like ‘Buy Map Art Barrel Prints Online,’ that title would then display on the homepage in those sections.

How should you optimize your collection’s titles?

You want your collection titles to be descriptive and informative about the items contained in this collection. And they should be general enough that the text doesn’t look overstuffed with keywords to visitors.

  • Make sure your collection titles are descriptive.
  • Avoid your collection titles being keyword stuffed.
  • Use collection titles to include a shorter-tail, general keyword for the page
  • Target longer-tail keywords and secondary keywords using the collection description

What’s the bottom line on
collection titles and collection SEO?

Collection titles are an essential SEO element! Fill them out, optimize them if you’d like, and please don’t turn them off! These are essential SEO elements, and they do a lot to help your collection SEO.


Now that you’ve finished reading this chapter on collection SEO, you can:

Read the previous chapter

The ‘SEO Title’ for a collection

Read the next chapter

The Collection Description

Or you can jump to one of these reader-favorite chapters:

If you want help growing your Shopify store, I encourage you to check out my Shopify SEO + Growth services or get in touch and tell me about your store.

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