When you set up a Magento website, you have to optimize it with the latest practices of search engine optimization to receive traffic and increase sales. SEO is a highly volatile technique with frequent Google updates rolling out on and off.
Optimizing a Magento based website is more complicated than implementing SEO for traditional websites because of the availability of lots of web pages, products, and their changing status at all the times.
As a result, beginners make several damaging SEO mistakes that can have a derogatory effect on your site's ranking in different search engines and decrease its conversion rate substantially. Here is a list of some SEO mistakes that you must avoid while exercising SEO for your Magento site:
1. No definite content strategy
The number of E-commerce websites are increasing rapidly and so are the competition. Therefore, every stakeholder finds it very difficult to catch the attention of the targeted audience. The visibility of your website in different search engines largely depends how you implement your content marketing strategy (apart from other factors).
But, despite knowing the importance of a well defined content marketing strategy, most of the SEO professionals, don't have their own specific content strategy. It is the biggest mistake made by them as it directly affects their overall business.
Make sure you don't use the default product description/title provided by the manufacturer. Write unique content, product description, how to articles, etc, and update your website regularly. Whenever you get a query on your website, reply that as soon as possible to boost user-engagement on your website. If you don't have resources/techniques to create quality content, you should contact content development agencies as soon as possible.
2. Neglecting the potential of Video Marketing
While optimizing Magento websites for search engines, several SEO professionals ignore the importance of video marketing. It's a fact that videos have potential to attract more and more people towards your website and encourage them to stay on site for extended periods of time. So, if you are not including interactive videos in your optimization efforts, then you are missing out on pages views and ultimately lots of business opportunities from your customers.
Make interactive videos (such as Testimonials/review videos, comparison videos, related product videos, How-to videos, product demo video, etc,) and use them on several video websites, social media channels and blogging platforms (apart from your website). This will help you to meet your target in terms of website traffic, subscribers, sales, leads, referral traffic, etc.
3. Not using the user generated content
As search engines always look for fresh content to deliver the best results to users, ignoring the importance of “user generated content” is one of main mistakes made by SEO professionals. You could miss traffic to your site and business opportunities coming from potential visitors.
These days, user-generated content (UGC) has emerged as an important component of SEO. If you use them properly, it will help you to connect with your targeted audience and involved them in your brand. Allow your customers to rate your products/services.
Note: Many users have a wrong perception about your website/company/business or they had a bad experience because of some reasons in the past. Such users damage your reputation by posting negative comments (with offensive language, insults and spam comments). Try to address the concerns of such customers as soon as possible and moderate such comments strictly.
4. Using default meta description, keywords & product descriptions
Using the ‘default description’ setting is another Magento SEO sin made by digital marketing professionals. If you use this, it applies a default description all over your website, which is strictly prohibited by Google.
Write fresh meta description and product description. You should have your own keywords which must be covering appropriate search terms used by visitors. This will help you to ensure good ranking of your website in different search engines.
A. Process to find out default meta descriptions on your Magento store:
System> Configuration>General> Design>HTML head> Default descriptions
B. Process to trace default keywords on your website:
System> Configuration>General> Design>HTML head>Default keywords
C. Process to locate add new Product Descriptions on your site:
Catalogue> Manage products > click on a product> Description> Add a new product description
5. DUPLICATED URLs
Occasionally, Magento makes the same content available on your website through different URLs by using other URL parameters and session IDs. This could be very detrimental to your website and may downgrade its ranking in search results.
To solve this issue, follow the steps mentioned below:
System> Configuration> Catalog> Search Engine Optimization and set “No” to the field “Use Categories Path for Product URLs”.
PASTE IMAGE “DUPLICATED ”
6. Not adding Alt attributes while using images
Images are widely used on E-commerce websites to attract visitors. However, many website owners don't' include “alt tag” in their images. Search engines can't understand images without alt attributes. So, they don't add such images in their search results.
Add alt attributes to the images you upload to your website. They help search engines to discover your images and add them in search results, which improves the accessibility of your website up to a great extent.
7. Creating a sitemap with sample products & categories
In general, a sitemap is used to allow search engines to crawl all pages of your website easily. However, amateur SEO professionals create a sitemap with sample products & categories, which don't help them to obtain high visibility on web pages.
Create sitemap.xml (with the latest categories, pages of special sales initiatives, product links, etc,) and submit it to search engines. To do so, just go to Catalog => Google Sitemap and submit it using the Google Webmaster tool.
8. A default layered navigation on your website
A default layered navigation on your website is also a headache for SEO professionals. When visitors land on your website, they want to find their favorite products within a few minutes. If they fail to get easy navigation features on your website to search the products by size, color, price, brands, etc, they get frustrated and leave the site immediately.
Stop Google from indexing your layered navigation pages by using cookies or sending fast Ajax requests. When you use an Ajax navigation on your website, this will help your visitors to find their desired products easily. However, doing this is a complicated assignment. Take the help of experienced Magento Developers/companies or use Magento extensions.
These are some of the most common SEO mistakes made by digital marketing professionals while optimizing Magento sites. If you learn from these mistakes, you will be able to improve your SEO strategy (for Magento websites) up to a great extent, meaning more visibility in search engines & business from existing & prospective buyers.