Ultimate Magento SEO Guide: What Matters and How to Setup
Anyone who runs Magento® online store aims to reach its popularity, get more customers, and as a result, more sales. So what factors affect the success of the online store? Definitely, they are the high quality of products and services, meeting the market expectations, website performance which influences conversion rate, and SEO.
Magento SEO is similar to the optimization process of any other website. But on the other hand, Magento online shop is much more complicated. It has more pages, categories, products, and features. So what exactly matters in Magento SEO and how to set up everything correctly? Today we’ll make it clear. Meet our ultimate guide which contains certain steps on how to make Magento online store SEO-friendly and popular. Our Magento SEO technical recommendations will help you not forget all these important things.
Magento SEO Content Structure
When we say “structure”, it means the whole content logic in HTML of each web page. In Magento, there are different types of pages, such as home page, contact page, category page, product page, and more others. And by the way, the last ones are the most multiple types. Each page must have a certain content structure to be SEO-friendly. We are going to consider the main structural elements in the context of Magento.
When Google’s bot goes through the web, it scans the web pages using the “links” it can base on, like titles, meta keywords, meta description, alt-texts of images, the logically built headers, and URLs. It aims to provide the users with the most relevant information, and these elements together help it learn the level of relevancy. It goes through the sitemap and stops on the pages that are marked like robot.txt (the pages which are not enabled to index). So this structure must be logically clear and give the certain sense of the content you post. If it is, each web page gets indexed and becomes visible for web users.
You can carry out and control your SEO using Google Search Console.
Magento SEO Titles
The title is the heading of your web page. It is the first visible element in Google search results colored in blue. It’s quite important to create a unique title for each Magento page (category, product, home and others.). And the main: a title should contain your focus keywords.
It looks like: Keyword1 Keyword 2…- Your Company Name
Setup titles in Magento: System -> Configuration -> Design-> HTML Head-> Default Title.
Example: In case the category page for business laptops, use a title like:
Business Laptops – Computer Shop. (“Computer Shop” is imagined brand name).
Magento SEO Metadata
Metadata is one of the most important types of information for search engines. It contains keywords, meta description. We’ll not stop on how to make a keyword research or write a description. You can read more about SEO-elements if you need.
You should just know that it’s necessary to pick the focus keywords for each page.
Setup keywords in Magento: System -> Configuration -> Design-> HTML Head-> Default Keywords.
Setup description in Magento: System -> Configuration -> Design-> HTML Head-> Default Description.
Magento SEO URLs
Here we’ll look at the common issues related to URLs you should keep in mind.
Human- and SEO-Friendly URLs
Don’t forget to include the keywords and relevant information to your URLs, where your pages sit. Each URL should be readable and tell the relevant information. Let’s take a look at some product page. Here is an example of good URL for the certain product: yourdomainname.com/puma-sneakers-for-run-white
Avoiding Duplicate Content
The duplication of content happens in several cases. We’ll consider them below
Domain Name Issue
The first one happens when your shop is delivered by the both types of domain name: with www and without www. It looks something like this:
If your Magento store is loaded with any of this types, congratulations, you have the duplicate content. But you can fix this and set up your domain name in Magento: System –> Configuration –> Web –> Unsecure –> Base URL.
Enter and save your domain name. Then make sure that your website doesn’t generate duplicate content and is available only by the domain name you’ve chosen.
Enable this option (choose „Yes“) using the following way: System –> Configuration –> Web –> Search Engines Optimization –> Use Web Server Rewrites.
Rel=Canonical Turning On
Turn on rel=canonical for the categories and products. It’s pretty helpful in reducing the number of duplicate content.
Setup rel=canonical: System –> Configuration –> Catalog –> Search Engine Optimisation -> „Use Canonical Link Meta Tag For Products“ and „Use Canonical Link Meta Tag For Categories“.
Set Up Redirects
Here the function Create Permanent Redirect for old URLs if Url key change will be helpful when you migrate your website or apply the certain changes to your URLs. Choose “Yes” for this function.
How to turn it on: System –> Configuration –> Catalog –> Create Permanent Redirect for old URLs if Url key changed
Don’t Set Up Categories Path for Product URLs
It’s better to turn off this function and choose “No” for it, in order not to make Google confused when you change the category name and all products set on this path can vanish from the index.
How to turn it off: System–>Configuration–>Catalog–>Use Categories Path for Product URLs
Also, there are some useful extensions that can help you on your way to great SEO.
Magento SEO Headings
Headings divide the page content into parts and name them. In HTML, headings follow locally one by one like H1, H2, H3, H4 tags and so on so forth. You should follow this logic and not miss the heading level when creating your content. H3 should follow H2. You can’t miss H4 and place H5 after H3. Also, include your keywords here.
Magento SEO Image Attributes
Everyone who carries out SEO should know that the search engines are not able to see what in the picture is. The only way to help them is to add the image attributes: image title and alt-text.
If talk about Magento with its numerous product images, this moment is quite critical here. Alt-text and image title should also include the keywords.
Magento SEO Links
Such important content elements, as links and anchors, should also contain the keywords. Internal site links for SEO are under your control in Magento, but also the system generates the category-related links automatically. Each page should be reachable through the website. For these purposes, webmasters should create a sitemap.
Sitemap.xml and Robot.txt in Magento SEO
These elements are devoted to helping the search engines follow the right way through the website. Sitemap.xml is a listing data of your store pages and links.
Where to find the Sitemap: Admin Panel -> System -> Configuration -> Google Sitemap. Then Enable it in Catalogue -> Sitemap.
A tip: it’s better to do this process after your website release. Before, don’t turn on “index, follow”, and use subdomain with an access password in the stage of development.
Setup Index Follow: System –> Configuration –> Design –> HTML Head –> Default robots “INDEX, FOLLOW”. – Turn on after release.
Check your sitemap file. Only then add it to Google Webmasters Tools.
If you run a multiple Magento online store, for example, Chinese and German, separate your sitemaps and call them like sitemap-ch.xml and sitemap-ge.xml.
Robot.txt is the file that contains the information about the website URLs Google’s robot should not crawl through. But note that it could keep the pages in the index (but not show the other elements, like title and description for these pages). Creating this file is a process that needs to be well-thought-out and performed. You can read more about it in Inchoo guide.
Content Quality in Magento SEO
The content quality definitely matters in SEO. What does it mean?
First of all, it’s the relevance of the content. Google’s most task is to provide the users with the most relevant information.
If you pick the keywords, they should make sense in the website texts, such as category and product descriptions, product cards, landing pages, and so on so forth.
The next thing is that the content should be unique, interesting, and attractive. Never try to use someone’s content or copy it from the other website. Such actions are forbidden by Google. Don’t only advertise. Give something useful.
Never use the black methods like hidden, bought, and broken links, spam, links in a bad neighborhood, overlinking. They will not boost the brand but destroy the reputation.
And remember the following: the more traffic generates your online store, the more conversion it gets, and the more popular is your brand, the higher position in the search results it gets.
Measurement of Magento SEO Results
It is not a step. It’s a continuous process that we have to for performing the best SEO practices. You should know how to measure results from the SEO campaigns. And here Google’s tools are very useful. The best helpers for watching your SEO are Google Search Console, and the most powerful platform for deep analysis of traffic sources is Google Analytics. Try to make friends with Google, and your Magento SEO will be much better.