Magento SEO: Tips to Optimize Your Magento Store for Search

By 14th August 2014 No Comments

Right after its launch in 2008, Magento has grown into a powerful content management system from a niche e-commerce platform. Magento is used by more than 200,000 online stores today and as such, choosing it for your e-commerce store is a fantastic option.

It is not only easy to customize visually, but incredibly easy to optimize for search engines also. Also, Magento comes in three different editions and we are going to elaborate SEO tips for the Community and Enterprise edition. So, let’s get started.

• Use Descriptive page titles
Page titles play in an important role in SEO, especially when you own an online store that depends heavily on search engine traffic. Using descriptive page titles has two benefits. First, they result in a higher CTR (Click Through Rate) to your website; and second, they improve visibility on search engine.

When page titles include several keywords pertaining to your product, they’re more likely to appear in the search results. For instance, a product page with a product name along with a description will attract more traffic than one with only a product name.

• Eliminate store codes from URL structure
Magento adds store codes to URLs by default. These store codes are used to uniquely identify products within the database. Disabling these store codes is highly recommended for SEO purpose and the process is quite easy and quick. You just need to go the SEO section in the configuration menu and disable it.

• Upload an XML sitemap
An XML sitemap is used to represent the hierarchical structure of the website to improve the crawling process by Google and other search engines. Without an XML sitemap, it’s really difficult for search engine bots to find all the inner pages of a website.

• Remove duplicate content
Magento generates duplicate content for products appearing in more than one category by default. This may make your site being hit by Panda Update. Overcoming this problem is quite simple. You just need to go to the Configuration page, then choose Catalog and Search Engine Optimization. From there, you can easily change the “Use Categories Path for URLs” setting from Yes to No and enable the two “Canonical Link Meta Tag” options.

• Smart use of keywords on product pages
Every customer doesn’t reach to your website by making a search for product name or model numbers. Many customers may try generic keywords like “sports shoes” or “women’s watches.”

So, instead of optimizing your product pages only for model numbers or product names, you should optimize them for both brand names and generic keywords. Including such keywords in product descriptions and sub-headings can seriously boost your SEO.

• Google Analytics Integration
Google Analytics has a lot to offer than just traffic details and visitors’ activity on a website. It provides information about referral traffic and best search keywords.

Creating a Google Analytics account and integrating it with Magento store is highly recommended.

• Optimize for specific keywords
All keywords are not equal from SEO point of view. Some are more likely to convert visitors into customers as compared to others. Commonly speaking, ‘buying’ keywords like product names and review-related phrases convert more often than generic keywords.

For instance, for a store selling sports shoes, keywords like “Adidas shoes review” or “Buy Adidas sports shoes” has a higher priority over “sports shoes.”

• Add a website blog
It really doesn’t matter whether you are holding an e-commerce or a general website; updating fresh and interesting content is always beneficial from SEO perspective, and there’s nothing better than adding a blog on website for this purpose.

There are numerous blog plug-ins available in Magento and most of them are quite simple to install and configure. Also, it’s possible to configure a WordPress blog in a subdirectory or on a sub-domain as an alternative.

Updating your blog frequently alerts Google to your website’s activity and get valuable SEO boost. To attract buyers rather than just the blog readers, you should use your blog to target curiosity keywords and answer frequently asked questions to resolve the customer queries.

Off-page optimization is equally important
In order to rank for competitive search keywords, both on-page and off-page optimization are needed. This means building backlinks for your store on a broad domain. Social media promotions offering discounts and special offers make people Tweet or post about you. Thone of the best ways to build links for your online store.

Final Word
Magento’s simple interface and fantastic customization options make it easy to optimize your website for Google and other search engines. From titles to URL structure, each of the tactics given above will improve your search engine rankings.

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