Magento is a great eCommerce platform, but it has its limitations. Its Layered Navigation feature—which is commonly used by online merchants—can be painful from an SEO perspective. For a serious ecommerce site with thousands of filters and products, Layered Navigation creates loads of terrible URLs with identical page titles, identical descriptions, and near-duplicate (or duplicate) content.
Many of our ecommerce clients use Magento and it’s our job to ensure that their websites remain optimized for search engines despite this fact. So over the years, we have developed Magento SEO techniques that everyone can use—and we are happy to share them with you.
Technical optimization of Magento could become complicated, however it could be done if you have a good understanding of the basics. For this short tutorial, we are going to assume that you have a knowledge of fundamental SEO. Hopefully, these tips help you better utilize filters in Magento sites for improved SEO.
Band-Aid Solution: Block All Layered Navigation Pages from Indexing
If you are completely new to the Magento platform and have no clue how to properly set it up, make sure that all pages created by Layered Navigation are not indexed by Google. This is a quick fix you can do yourself until you are able to learn more, or until you can get an SEO agency to help you. How do you block these pages from indexing? Simply place a noindex tag in the <head> section of all the pages generated through “Filters”.
Use a Layered Navigation Extension
We recommend Improved Layered Navigation by Amnasty, which has helped thousands of online store owners optimize their Magento ecommerce websites’ navigation. This extension lets your customers find exactly the products they need while solving Magento’s common SEO issues.
Do you sell many different brands and want to open all your brands pages for indexing because you think you need them to acquire relevant search traffic? Improved Layered Navigation from Amnasty allows you to build beautiful and easy-to-use brands pages that look just like regular categories. It also lets you to quickly add unique content, META description, CMS blocks, and so on for maximum SEO impact.
Likewise you can allow to open filtered results for indexing, but make them much more search friendly, with optimized URL and unique text.
You can improve the functionality of your filtered pages to apply a combination of several filters for PPC, for long tail keywords, for special deals, etc.
Never lose sight of your main goal for optimizing your Magento site: that is, to give your customers the pages containing the products they came there to see. Regularly review your website especially if you are constantly adding new products.
Are there new search queries you want to rank for? Then keep building pages with filtered products for these queries. The key is to plan way in advance because it takes Google some time to deindex duplicate pages, especially if you have hundreds or even thousands of them. After your website is re-indexed, see how well you are performing in search and fix the remaining duplicate or unwanted pages right away. You might have to change settings, deindex or index pages with filtered results, and do other adjustments based on your SEO data.
Out of the box, Magento is reasonably fine in the SEO front. But if you want a solid high-ranking website that sells all day long, then it’s a good idea to use these tips.
DO YOU NEED MAGENTO YOUR WEBSITE REVIEWED? If you need experts to check your Magento install, contact SEOValley. We can deliver a full report of the improvements you need for your site.