Best Magento SEO and Optimisation Tips for Beginners

Magento is a great platform for those who want to start their own online store. It offers all the features you would need to run a successful online store. However, there are a few things you can optimise further in order for your Magento site to be SEO-friendly and very efficient. We are going to talk about some of the tips you can easily apply to optimise Magento in this article.

Adding Metadata

Metadata is very important for SEO purposes. You can get crawlers to identify your pages more effectively through the use of metadata. Each Magento page has its own metadata field you can fill with various information. The two most important elements you need to add are description and keywords.

These two elements should be very relevant to the page itself. Never add keywords just to get exposure; Google and other search engines will penalise you for doing so. Instead of getting a nice SEO boost, your Magento site will be marked down if you use irrelevant keywords.

SEO-Friendly URLs

Since Magento generates pages dynamically, it is not surprising to find strings and other elements on the URLs. You can actually remove these elements from URLs and make them more SEO-friendly.

To do this, go to System > Configuration > Web on the admin panel of your Magento site. Browse to URL Options and you will find a field titled “Add Store Code to URLs” on the page. All you have to do is change this option to NO and you will have clean, SEO-friendly URLs throughout the site.

You can also remove index.php from all URLs. This will also result in a nice SEO boost. The option is available under the same option. Set “Server URL Rewrite” to yes to achieve this effect.

Optimise Your Product Pages

The heart of every online store is the catalog or product page. The tip on metadata we discussed earlier applies to all product pages as well. Be sure to add relevant description and keywords to each page to make them even more effective in terms of SEO and discoverability.

The next step is to fill the product pages with good, high quality content. Keep each product description concise but effective. Add relevant information to the body of each page; crawlers will also review the content of each page when ranking your site, so what you put inside the body of each page is just as important.
Lastly, add images to the product pages. Images can greatly increase your site’s conversion rate. Over 70% of customers choose to buy a product when they find appealing product images. Don’t just use any image too. Use images that make the products appear more interesting in the eyes of customers.

Don’t forget to add the correct ALT tag to each image on your product pages. Crawlers can’t really see and review images, so ALT tag and image description will help them determine the content of each image when crawling your site. You can also rename each image to match its content for a better overall SEO performance.

Site Optimisation

Magento is not the most efficient ecommerce platform out there. There is room for improvement when you deploy a Magento site. Here are a few things you can do:

Remove duplicate entries and test pages before you launch your online store. This will avoid unnecessary 404 errors and other problems in the future.

– Create an up to date sitemap of the online store and submit it to Google and other search engines. This will help get your site indexed faster, which in turn will help you generate a lot of sales early on.

– The content of each page should differ from one another too. I know how tempting it is to copy and paste similar information to multiple pages, but this will actually hurt your site’s SEO performance.

– Test and fix errors early, preferably before you launch the site to the public. You don’t have to deal with problems in the future when they are fixed early on.

Delivery and More Optimisation

Even with the tips we discussed earlier, there are still so many things to do in order to optimise your Magento site. For starters, you can optimise your Magento theme for maximum performance. Separate JavaScript and CSS files, minify them and combine them into one in order to reduce HTTP requests. You will be speeding up your site substantially this way.

The same can be said to design elements and images. Be sure to remove unnecessary information from them, including color profiles and metadata. Optimising images and design elements will help reduce the size of your Magento site by as much as 40%.

Last but not least, activate caching and use CDN (Content Distribution Network) to optimise the delivery of your site. CDNs are no longer expensive, thanks to services such as Amason AWS and CloudFlare. You can cater to international customers quickly and easily with content delivered optimally.

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