Way back in 2009, we started using Magento to build bespoke eCommerce sites. The last 13 years have been a roller coaster for us, and we’ve helped countless great businesses create powerfully integrated, fully optimised and fantastically unique eCommerce stores that are tailored to their exact needs.
During this time, we’ve learnt a thing or two about it and we think it’s time to share some Magento SEO advice.
The platform recently changed its name to Adobe Commerce, but its powerful capabilities have not changed at all and nowhere is this truer than in the world of SEO.
Forming and implementing a strong SEO strategy is a skill and people forge whole careers on just designing them.
However, here, we’re going to share some tips with you that can give you a head start when it comes to working with using the Magento / Adobe Commerce platform to climb the search rankings and bring customers into your eCommerce store.
What is Magento SEO?
Magento SEO specifically means making the most of as many of the advantages offered by this versatile platform as possible in order to reach your own unique set of SEO targets.
The Magento platform provides users with a whole range of ways to improve pretty much every SEO ranking factor, such as page loading times, site architecture, organic search traffic and optimised website content. SEO goals are pretty much the same across the board, what is different is the approaches people can take towards them and Magento adds a whole new dimension to this.
Magento SEO advice: How to do it
Use the Sitemap
Your sitemap helps guide the site crawlers that visit your eCommerce store around its inner workings. Think of these crawlers as health inspectors visiting a restaurant. As the owner, you really want to highlight all the best features of your business so it looks as good as possible because the better you look, the higher your score will be and the better you will do in the search rankings.
There are a few reasons why you might want to take charge of mapping where the crawlers should go. For example, if certain pages on your site are still in development, then it’s a good idea to tell the crawlers not to index them for now, as doing so could unfairly impact your SEO score.
Plotting a sitemap on Magento can be done in just four simple steps:
By setting up the sitemap’s configuration, you can determine exactly what is included in the sitemap and how often it is updated. You can also tell what pages or images should be avoided and for how long. When the time you specify expires, the crawlers will automatically start indexing those pages without you having to tell them.
Generate the sitemap
Navigate to the admin menu and make your way to the SEO and Search menu which can be found under Marketing. From here, move on to the sitemap section and click ‘Add Sitemap’. Next, enter your desired filename and enter the path to determine where the sitemap will live on your server. Click ‘Save and Generate’ to finish.
This is the part that tells the bots which parts of your site you want to be left out. It’s optional but recommended as it avoids nasty surprises that you could regret further down the line. You can edit the robots.txt file here.
Submit your sitemap to the search engines
You can deliver your sitemap directly to each different search engine. In the sitemap grid, simply right click the URL for the search engine you want, copy the link address and submit it to them via their relevant forms. For example, on Google you need to do it via their sitemap report page.
Rewrite URLs in Magento
Keeping URLs simple, consistent and relevant is very important for your SEO. Clean URLs are a big indicator of your site’s organisation and overall health and the search engine crawlers will find indexing your site much easier if they’re kept in good order.
Every experienced eCommerce manager knows that online stores sometimes need restructuring, and this can often involve rewriting or redirecting URLs. This can be a problem for your SEO because mistakes happen and if it’s done inconsistently or at the wrong time, it could coincide with a visit from the search engine crawlers which could impact your search ranking.
Rewriting URLs in Magento is remarkably safe and easy. The specialised URL rewrite tool automatically points any links associated with an old URL to the new one. This saves time and stops any nasty oversites from happening. The URL redirect function completely updates the URL that is stored on the server and can be implemented either temporarily or permanently. FYI, URL redirects are set to permanent by default and you might want to uncheck this if you have a lot of products in one category that is likely to move again.
Onpage opitimisation in Magento
Keyword-rich content is crucial to establishing a good position in the search rankings. By creating content that’s engaging and resonates with all the right search terms, you can ensure that you appear in the relevant searches and stand a good chance of bringing more customers to your eCommerce store.
This type of info is known as metadata and not all of it is visible in the front end. Magento makes it super easy to organise and implement Metadata in a way that catches the eye of the search engine bots and gives your site an SEO boost.
The first thing to think about is your Meta Title. This appears in the title bar and tab of your browsers and is the first thing crawlers will notice. Every product page you have should be fighting for its own position in its specific rankings, so make sure no two pages have the same one. Make sure the titles are concise and clear, none of them should be more than 70 characters long.
Secondly, your meta keywords. These are only visible in your page’s HTML but some search engine crawlers regard them as a key ranking factor. This is less common practice than it used to be, but some still use it so it’s definitely a good idea to have them in a decent shape.
Finally, the Meta Description. This provides a brief description of the page to the site crawlers. They should only be around 150 characters long but that is enough for you to be able to load them with keywords that will only help in getting your site indexed properly. Remember, you’re not writing for humans here, so keep it blunt and to the point. A list of keywords associated with the page should do just fine.
Extra Magento SEO Advice
Use the Page Builder
Magento’s Page Builder function enables you to create engaging on-page content and complete pages from scratch quickly and easily.
This not only saves you oodles of time and money, but can also severely reduce the risk of damaging your SEO whilst giving your site a revamp. This is because Magento Page Builder makes it really easy to create consistency across your eCommerce site which makes it much easier for the site crawlers to index. Absolutely no coding is required to build pages in this way so the backend framework will remain solid whilst your front end remains eye-catching, organised and fully customisable.
All websites built using Magento come pre-integrated with a whole range of Google Tools that can help shape your SEO strategy.
Google Analytics is a great way to track the performance of a number of metrics, including the performance of your SEO features. Magento sites sent accurate info to Google Analytics so regularly checking it can give you very strong indications of how your strategies can be tweaked for premium performance.
Have a look through the list of Google Tools available to Magento users and add them to your site based on your needs.
Want to know more?
So, there we have it. These are some of our top pieces of Magento SEO advice. Like we said at the top of the article, we’ve been using the Magento / Adobe Commerce platform to deliver bespoke eCommerce sites with powerful SEO capabilities for well over ten years now.
If you would like to talk more about Magento SEO or find out what we can do for you, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.