Whether you are upgrading from Magento 1.9 or starting from scratch with Magento 2 you’ll need to set up your new e-commerce website to be search engine friendly. Thankfully Magento 2 has a multitude of options so no matter what your online store sells you’ll be able to configure it to make it easy for users and search engines alike.
Magento 2 comes with a number of SEO options that can be configured without installing any extensions or add-ons:
As with any e-commerce platform, there are multiple ways to get to product pages as well as multiple filters that create variations of category pages. These characteristics can lead to duplicate content issues that can be solved by adding canonical tags to product pages and category pages.
Simply set ‘Use Canonical Link Meta Tag for Categories’ and ‘Use Canonical Link Meta for Products’ as ‘Yes’ to add canonical tags to these page types.
Many e-commerce stores want to get products online as quickly as possible. Sometimes this means the products aren’t as optimised for SEO as they could be. If you change the URL key of a product this will change the URL of the product page and create a 404 error for both users and search engines.
To stop this from happening set the ‘Create Permanent Redirect for URLs if URL Key Changed’ option to ‘Yes’, this will create a 301 redirect to help reduce errors.
By default, Magento 2 product URLs will have the category structure to them e.g. https://www.example.com/category/sub-category/product-name.html
This can be reduced to just: https://www.example.com/product-name.html
This will improve search engines crawling your website as instead of crawling multiple pages for a product if your product is in multiple categories, it will instead only crawl the single page.
Set ‘Use Categories Path for Product URLs’ to ‘No’ in order to reduce the number of pages crawled by the search engines and improve the crawlability of your website.
These settings within Magento 2 are very powerful and if not implemented correctly can have significant detrimental effects on your SEO. For help setting up your Magento 2 website for SEO, contact Colewood.