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Why Magento Is One of the Best Platforms for eCommerce SEO

Magento has long been seen as a feature-packed eCommerce platform and among the top three platforms of choice for the top 500 internet retail companies. In fact, Magento’s versatility is so popular, it has grown to power 28% of websites across the net and 16% of the top one million websites. It’s not just the customization that draws the eCommerce brands. Magento is packed with resources and features to help ensure your store ranks in organic search.

More importantly, Magento is the best platform for eCommerce SEO because it doesn’t sacrifice key elements in favour of SEO, like UX or independent products links, titles, H1s, and URLs. While those things might not seem important, they can significantly impact your ability to control your optimization and visibility and tamper with your user experience just enough to create a headache for customers.

Here’s why you won’t have that problem with Magento.

Independent Navigation Links

Navigation links are the text links that appear for your product pages and categories throughout your site—specifically, in menus. A number of eCommerce platforms generate these links automatically based on the product name or product category. Changing them can be difficult or may not be available at all, depending on the platform you use. Magento gives you complete control over navigation links, which is preferable from an SEO standpoint. You want to be able to control the anchor text for any link generated on your site.

Independent Page Titles

Page titles are the text that appears in the tab up at the top of your browser. Title text is also used for defining bookmarks when saved by a user and is visible in the search results when a customer is looking for products. Because of this, creating independent page titles can have not only a significant impact on SEO but also on winning the click over other products in the search results. Unlike other platforms that automatically generate page titles using the product or category name, Magento gives you more flexibility, allowing for independent page titles on more than just your homepage.

Customizable H1 Tags

The H1 Tag is the most visually notable content on a web page, which means it’s an optimization for the user—and that is exactly where SEO has been going: optimizing for the user and not just search. That’s why, despite countless changes to how sites are ranked, the H1 tag still holds considerable weight as a rank factor. That’s why marketers often spend a considerable amount of time crafting the perfect H1 tag for their content.

So, imagine the frustration of eCommerce retailers when H1 tags are generated automatically for product pages and are not easily changed. Thankfully, Magento’s platform can be set up to allow for customization of the H1 tag, so you can make it different from the product name (for targeting specific keyword variations) if you so desire.

Canonical URLs

It’s fairly normal for the same product within an eCommerce store to be listed under two different URLs. For example, patio furniture could be listed under “outdoor furniture,” as well as “home and garden.” The two URLs may look unique, but the content of the page is the same. To Google, this could appear as duplicate content, and it might prevent either page from ranking well in the search results.

If there’s a significant amount of duplicate content, a site could be penalized by Google. As part of your SEO strategy, you should utilize canonical URLs to tell search engines which content is a duplicate of the original page and where to redirect traffic. Canonical URLs point search engines toward the version of the content most likely to be the original or best option to show the user.

From an SEO standpoint, you can imagine how multiple configurable products with multiple variants could quickly lead into a labyrinth of dead ends and split traffic on your page. Magento wins out for eCommerce SEO because you can set a canonical tag to appear on category and product pages in the configuration section inside the Magento admin panel. Magento 2.0 automatically uses the canonical tag in hierarchical product URLs.

Integrated Content Pages – Content Management

The number and quality of links pointing to your site are a major ranking factor. Organic link building has always been a top priority in SEO. Unfortunately, eCommerce sites may be filled with content, but few brands have products so newsworthy or interesting that they generate direct links from other sources.

Not only can you attract a wealth of links to quality articles and content you share on your blog, each of those articles can also rank well in organic search when properly optimized—but only if the eCommerce platform you use has the functionality for you to create topical, engaging, and shareable content.

Rather than forcing you to use pre-built CMS functions or limiting you to specific extensions, the open-source nature of Magento means that, whether a third-party solution or custom solution is built from scratch, you won’t have to upgrade your service or accrue any additional costs when you want to make blogging a regular part of your marketing.

Faster Load Times

When it comes to SEO, site speed matters. This is especially true in a world where eCommerce is moving toward mobile and customers on the go don’t want to wait for content to load. In fact, a 1-second delay in page load time can result in a 7% reduction in conversions.

That’s why Google includes site load times as a factor for determining search rank.

Thankfully, Magento offers a number of options and configuration adjustments that can give you a huge performance boost and make your site load faster by using flat catalogues to reduce SQL queries to cached storage and merging Javascript and CSS files. Many of these features can be accessed within the configuration settings of Magento, making optimization even easier.

Customization aside, Magento’s architecture is designed to handle heavy traffic with a performance toolkit that makes it a breeze to optimize system performance by speeding up the loading of pages and reducing the server load. This level of reliability against server loads and faster speeds is one of the main reasons Magento is chosen by some of the top internet retailers today.

Conclusion

Magento is the leading eCommerce platform for SEO primarily due to its open-source nature and level of customization. This gives developers and brands more control over the on-page and off-page technical optimization to maximize organic visibility. If a feature that you need isn’t included, you can easily find or develop an extension to make it happen. In addition, this level of customization allows brands the highest level of control over user experience. Provide your customers with a pleasant shopping and navigation experience, and they’re far less likely to bail out back to the search results.

About the author

Howard Rybko

Howard Rybko

Involved in software development and web since 1996 (Hypermedia company established for web design and hosting). Specialist in software design, integration and implementation management. Experienced in c#, SQL, and project management. Working on Magento stores and integration since 2013.

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