You can now edit the Shopify robots.txt file

One complaint shared by many Shopify users is their inability to edit the robots.txt file. This inflexibility, alongside other quirks such as a bloated internal linking structure with an endless number of canonicals in place, has plagued SEOs since Shopify’s conception.

However, without much fanfare, Shopify have released documentation that specifies how to alter the previously uneditable robots.txt file.

I first learned of it on Twitter, when user Kyle Faber tweeted the following:

Sure enough, searching through the documentation on Shopify reveals the following page:

The new robots.txt documentation found in the Shopify knowledge base

The documentation provides examples for how to:

  • Add new rules to the robots.txt file
  • Remove existing rules
  • Block certain crawlers
  • Add additional sitemaps

Robots.txt changes are made by adding the robots.txt.liquid file to your theme.

This adjustment to Shopify’s functionality is excellent news for SEOs finding that the default robots.txt rules were not sufficient to control search engine crawler behaviour.

Read more about Shopify’s ‘Customize robots.txt’ functionality here:

About the author

Sam Penny is an SEO specialist who lives in Melbourne, Australia. He's interested in content strategy, technical SEO, and SEO fundamentals.

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