The market is more limited for eCommerce merchants looking for specific business-centric website platforms than it is for bloggers and news agencies interested in CMS platforms.
Some of the bigger platforms for eCommerce are WordPress (no surprise, paired with WooCommerce) and SaaS platforms like BigCommerce and Shopify.
There are also open-source platforms like Volusion and Magento.
The latter two boast an open-source structure that makes endless optimizations possible.
It also makes it very difficult to optimize a Magento store for SEO, especially for those that have no development experience. Here’s what you need to know before you hire a Top Magento SEO agency to turn things around.
Why Is Magento So Complicated?
The key problem with Magento and SEO is that it the platform is open-source and does not provide hosting for its customers.
Magento open-source software is free for download, which means anyone can use it. However, it also means that hosting and support fall on the user.
Users must support and maintain their own datacenters, either within their own locations or elsewhere through another hosting provider. Server storage space and upkeep can create access problems and site speed problems.
Page speeds can be some of the biggest problems facing merchants that use Magento, as excess code, improperly sized and configured images, and other massive amounts of data will slow down websites and harm the user experience. Google has also been getting more serious about assigning rankings based on page speed.
Also, Magento is one of the most complex eCommerce platforms on the market in terms of usability and customizability. It is also impossible to make even the most basic changes to a Magento web page without extensive coding and web development experience.
Magento also does not automatically generate an XML sitemap for your website (although Magento 2 makes it easier to do so with a manual request). Magento 2 also does create a robots.txt file but does not configure it. Both of these considerations can harm indexing.
Failing to configure the “canonical URL” setting in Magento (which is easy to configure in Magento 2 but not automatic) will also trick Google into thinking you have lots of duplicate content if you have multiple URLs with the same content. This is an easy fix but still something that complicates SEO with respect to Magento.
What Are Some SEO Best Practices for Magento?
Having covered some of these issues associated with the complexity of Magento and SEO, there are some good practices you can follow to help ensure your Magento website is, at least, competitive.
The best practices mentioned here are basically the same as they are for almost any website. What makes SEO work (and not work) is not platform-specific.
With that said:
- Keep your Magento store updated; install the latest version as soon as it becomes available.
- To improve site speed, ensure your website is hosted on servers that have adequate space and resources to handle your website’s data and user loads.
- Enable caching and minimize JS and CSS; these will boost site speed a little bit too.
- Scrub your websites for URL slugs that make no sense (are stuffed with nonsense letters and characters) and rewrite them. Preferably, do this before making a new page live, that way you don’t create any broken links.
- Write custom product and category page content and metadata to prevent duplicate penalties.
- Compress images and other large files before uploading them to your website.
- Don’t steal content (duplicate).
These are just some high-level best practices. There are many others, and you can easily get way more involved with it, but these best practices will help you avoid some of the pitfalls mentioned here.
Work with a Top Magento SEO Agency
Some Magento merchants prefer to work with the top Magento SEO agencies in their industries. These Magento SEO experts, who specialize in search engine optimization services like keyword research, link-building, and eCommerce blogging, can help make your website SEO-friendly, improving its search engine rankings with the goal of increasing organic traffic and improving conversion rates.
If your eCommerce website has been struggling to increase traffic and build domain authority, consider working with a Magento SEO agency, with years of experience, that is well-established in your industry.