Since 2015, E-commerce has now become a real combat between merchants globally. Hundreds of merchants in thousands of categories of products try to slash Google ranking of rivals. This is the primary reason why SEO is necessary even if it cannot bring e-commerce store on the first page always. In this text, you can quickly look at the implementation of top 15 Magento 2 SEO techniques for Magento website that may result in a prospect landing on your website.
Just keep in mind that SEO tricks now no longer the same and effective as those a couple of years back. Therefore I mention 15+ quick Magento 2 SEO techniques that work in 2015-2020. These are targeted towards Magento e-commerce website owners but can be useful for other platforms as well.
15 Magento 2 SEO Techniques
1.Streamline category titles and meta descriptions with brand name
SEO marks are awarded for streamlined user experience/settings also. In order to implement unified suffix in our Magento categories, first choose the brand name word to add in all page titles as a suffix like – Wooden Co for a furniture company then, within the administration panel:
1. Navigate to System → Configuration → Design → HTML Head.
2. Within this section, set Title Suffix to “- Brand Name” (using either “-” or “|”) and click on Save Config.
To set Meta Descriptions tag, go to the General Information tab of our chosen category, and set your Meta Description field to a 160 character customer-targeted description including our chosen suffix term.
Warning: if you do not add Meta Descriptions line for all categories, one will be copied to other categories too, and you will face duplicate Meta content Issue.
2.Configure .htaccess file appropriately in Magento
Magento comes packaged with multiple .htaccess files and right one which should be operated upon resides on the direct Root directory of the web host. Its settings are applicable to each folder of the website.
In order to edit the .htaccess file, you need to install Notepad++ or similar editor.
The most useful and performance-based .htaccess tweaks are implementation of Content-Encoding (mod_deflate/mod_gzip) and Expiration Headers (mod_expires).
The gzip compression essentially presents the browser with a zipped version of the file. Compressing the file before transferring it results in less download time required.
To enable compression, we ought to add the following lines of code to our root .htaccess file:
BrowserMatch ^Mozilla/4 gzip-only-text/html
BrowserMatch ^Mozilla/4\.0 no-gzip
BrowserMatch \bMSIE !no-gzip !gzip-only-text/html
SetEnvIfNoCase Request_URI \.(?:gif|jpe?g|png)$ no-gzip dont-vary
Header append Vary User-Agent env=!dont-vary
mod_gzip_item_include file \.(html?|txt|css|js|php|pl)$
mod_gzip_item_include handler ^cgi-script$
mod_gzip_item_include mime ^text/.*
mod_gzip_item_exclude mime ^image/.*
mod_gzip_item_exclude rspheader ^Content-Encoding:.*gzip.*
The next step is to set up our expiration headers, which will tell the browser to use its own cached version of our file if the expiration date of the current file is in the future. This will also reduce the download time as sheer bytes have to be transferred.
To enable this feature, add following code snippet at end of .htaccess:
ExpiresDefault “access plus 1 seconds”
ExpiresByType text/html “access plus 1 seconds”
ExpiresByType image/gif “access plus 2592000 seconds”
ExpiresByType image/jpeg “access plus 2592000 seconds”
ExpiresByType image/png “access plus 2592000 seconds”
ExpiresByType text/css “access plus 604800 seconds”
For Magento CE edition, both above snippets together reduce loading time by at least 1 whole second, more depends on the number of images packed on a particular webpage.
3.From Magento admin, follow anyone format of website from www or non-www
It is important to choose whether you wish to publicly display your domain name
with or without the www prefix.
Websites like twitter.com don’t use it while many websites do.
Although there are no benefits in terms of SEO to using one over the other, it is important that we are not allowing both versions of our website to be accessible simultaneously because search engines see both versions as two completely separate instances of a page.
To enable www- the only version for a Magento website, go to the admin panel. Navigate to System → Configuration → Web, and then from URL Options, change Auto-redirect to Base URL to Yes (301 Moved Permanently) as shown in the following screenshot:
4.Optimize Product Images
Images can make or break a deal.
On e-commerce landscape, people prefer to buy from a vendor who provides a display of all sides of the product.
Sites like Flipkart, Amazon etc. even allow to zoom-in and zoom-out views, you can retaliate by implementing same on your website.
“60% of consumers are more willing to consider a website that includes images and another 23% are more likely to contact a business showcasing pixel-perfect views.”
Also, don’t forget to add ALT and TITLE tags to all images to boost overall SEO strategy.
To add these tags to product images in Magento version 2, go to Admin panel >> Products >> Catalog >> in Configurable Products section, double click on thumbnail >> Go to the detail page >> scroll down to Images and Videos >> double click on images >> add ALT text in the given field.
5.Add LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) keywords randomly
This is to say that add other than targeted but related to domain terms in first 100 words of each webpage. It let search engine crawlers know that a business is operating in the specific sector of industry and provides certain limited services in which it excels.
Try to avoid/minimize out of domain words as it can confuse the crawler or makes your webpage less relevant in the eyes of Google bots.
In Magento 2 website, you need to open backend to edit content to insert LSI keywords. Alternatively, you can open a specific webpage file from cPanel→ File Manager → select page → open with Notepad++ and add LSI keywords.
6.Avoid publishing duplicate content on web pages
Just because universal TITLEs & METAs framed with brand name possess SEO weightage does not mean the duplicate content is good on page body. Don’t get lazy by copying manufacturer’s descriptions as it is. Instead, add your words, write more informative and educational contents that will give additional information like returning terms, where to submit Feedback etc. that your customer really needs.
“Updating and republishing old blog posts with new content and images can increase organic traffic by as much as 111%”
7.Craft SEO friendly URLs
We cannot add more than 5% keyword density in targeted products/categories page. Good space to look for adding more number of SEO keywords at this step is in the URL.
It creates attractive and readable URL for end user alike boring numeral parameters. 57% B2B marketers agree that SEO generates more leads than any other mediums of marketing.
8.Make website more semantic
Coming is an edge of semantic web 3.0 that promotes common data formats. In simple words, adding HTML-like special tags makes website semantic, preferred by search engines.
They are technically referred to as Schema.org and structured data through which search engine can identify/understand you as an entity and knows about your webshop in machine level terms.
It is easy and requires few minutes of work only. Add it from Google helper, here is the link: Markup-Helper You may need to leverage developer help to insert tags extracted with above link for Magento site.
“Adding rich snippets to website results in better User-Brand interaction.”
9.Control and exercise over bot access
Make sure that search engine spiders(specifically malicious ones) can’t access the confidential parts related to e-commerce such as Add to Cart, Complete Purchase page etc. For this, you need to get grips over settings of the robots.txt file. As flip side of the coin, we need to make sure that required sections of the site are not bereaved from crawling.
10.Prop-up long tail keywords
Searchers now tend to enter discreet words than general keywords on Google and similar search engines.
“50% of search queries are 4 words or longer.”
Therefore, taking this fact into account, long tail keywords have potential to show your internet shop at the front. It will also filter qualified visitors who are at depth part into sales funnel and near to conversion. I suggest LongTail Pro tool. It is the best tool to find the long tail keywords and its level of competition at the cheapest price, USD 25/month.
11.Provide bread crumbs
Users might need to go back and forth between category pages when they are looking similar products or comparing.
Breadcrumb navigation allows to do them with ease.
12.Select and develop mobile-responsive Magento theme
There are many places online from where you can purchase
- cross-browser compatible
- W3C validated
Alternatively, you can hire an in-house designer that will help you creating customized e-commerce template of preferences and then get you PSD file converted into pixel-perfect Magento theme.
13.Create and submit XML & HTML sitemaps to search engines
This is one of the oldest techniques and should be used.
14.Avoid using non-SEO friendly technologies to build site components
- Flash &
They can cause higher loading time of the page, but the more problematic side in using them is they are difficult to get crawled by search engines, hence content within them is not visible effectively.
15.Use call to actions properly
Once purchaser or proposed lead has landed on the website, drive them to right destination and within less number of clicks.
Steer visitors gradually to products page by first providing valuable information.
Mentioning price increases sales necessarily as visitors trust for your transparency.
In case, writing fixed price is not possible in particular business niche, you may provide break-up tasks and proportionate rate – like a calculator.
Develop elaborate Contact Us & Get Quote forms, add primary business e-mail id and phone number either in header or footer so that it displays on all web pages.
Few other examples of call-to-action objects are Newsletter box, Submit a Query, Giving a button to go to top or bottom of the page etc.
Examples in above text use back-end panel of Magento but you can implement the same in on other e-commerce platforms as well. 200 SEO factors enlisted by Google together determine PA or value of a specific webpage in a given website. And there exists always a room for more improvements to enhance usability and user experience. Rather sitting idle thinking it will not work, you can fix broken links, add visual cues such as SVG icons inside content, employ security badges like HTTPS or can try hands on free SEO report tools to get more suggestions.
Doing marketing is always better than not doing it. Digital marketing is a combination of arts and science. You do not need to become software developer strictly – for improving website parts. You can browse the internet and read a bit about commonly used browser-plugins like Firebug & Firefox Web Tool Kit – with help of which you can observe and estimate the individual weight of page objects. Once identified, you can remove heavy or high in size images, videos or can substitute with alternatives that don’t take more time for loading.
Finally, adding one more backlink is not useless.
“75% of SEO is off-page and 25% is on-page.” (Source: Hubspot)
With this fact revealed, there is no harm working day and night for creating valuable links that steer internet surfers to your newly created or an aged website.
From time-to-time, you can take up expert advice from seasoned SEO consultant or buy extensions that uncover hidden possibilities, e.g. any CRM integration with Magento site which results in sales process automation.
I hope Magento 2 SEO techniques mentioned above will help you to get found on the internet better than previous times and in converting more number of visitors into buyers. Awaiting for your comments.
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