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Thread: SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    20

    Default SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

    I read a few threads in this forum that it is good to have your products listed in several categories with identical links to the product. How do you remove the category code from url's? Would I use a rewrite in the .htaccess file?

    Also, I just started using related products and am having a problem with them being blocked by a robot.txt file because they have the long Miva url's. Would this also be solved by a rewrite in the .htaccess file?

    Or can these problems be solved by changing the category and product templates?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,077

    Default Re: SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

    Search engine friendly links tutorial.

    Note that the tutorial includes category codes in links to products but all you need to do is follow the tutorial and delete the appropriate part in the link and in the .htaccess file. That is, just follow this example, in the tutorial:

    RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} ^/p/(.*)/(.*) [NC]
    RewriteRule (.*) /mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=%1&Store_Cod e=ZZ [L]

    with:

    <a href="/p/&mvta:product:code;/&mvta:product:name;">&mvt:product:name;</a>

    If you have search engine friendly links then they also should be created for Related Products - just copy the above example i.e. <a href="/p/&mvta:product:code;/&mvta:product:name;">&mvt:product:name;</a>

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    2,421

    Default Re: SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

    Another option is Sebenza's Ultimate SEO Links.
    Dan - Glendale Designs
    Offering advanced Miva Merchant design, development and marketing services for over 16 years.
    http://www.glendaledesigns.com
    sales@glendaledesigns.com
    623.322.6066

    Follow us on Twitter

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    NH USA
    Posts
    182

    Default Re: SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

    I have yet to have anyone prove to me that having two links to the same product on your site because of multiple categories will cause problems on Google. They are smart enough to realize that you might just want to make your site easier to navigate and have customers actually find and purchase your product.
    I know that there are those who might jump in and give that duplicate content speech. I'm saying prove it for items in multiple categories. (And don't go adding every item in your store into all 500 categories in a store....you know what I mean.)
    Michael Davidson
    Picturesque
    http://picturesqueweb.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    6,854

    Default Re: SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

    "They" are saying its good to have it in multiple categories...personally, I think even if this was so, you are better off putting effort into better descriptions and content.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    Default Re: SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

    I have yet to have anyone prove to me that having two links to the same product on your site because of multiple categories will cause problems on Google.
    Google's own Webmaster Guidelines state that within reason, store items displayed using separate distinct urls is not considered malicous. But excessive use of duplicate content, slightly different duplicate content throughout the store or obvious attempts to improve rank with duplicat content is not acceptible.

    I see so many store owners, webmasters and developers paste a chunk of "search engine friendly" text in their global header, footer or storefront thinking that this will give them good search engine ranking. To me this is a good example of bad duplicate content, not a few products assigned to multiple categories using different urls.
    Dan - Glendale Designs
    Offering advanced Miva Merchant design, development and marketing services for over 16 years.
    http://www.glendaledesigns.com
    sales@glendaledesigns.com
    623.322.6066

    Follow us on Twitter

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,077

    Default Re: SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

    When you have links to the same product from multiple categories and you include the category code and/or category name in the urls, Google doesn't penalize you - I believe you penalize yourself. So of course this meets the Google Webmaster Guidelines.

    Having multiple links to the same product, as PicturesqueWeb intimates, is a good idea. What is not a good idea is to have multiple different links to the same product - i.e. links containing different category codes/names.

    Google doesn't penalize you - it simply places one of the "pages" in it's supplemetary index (i.e. the graveyard) and leaves the other in it's normal index. So why do I believe you penalize yourself? Because the "pages" in the supplementary index are bleeding PR from the rest of your store.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    NH USA
    Posts
    182

    Default Re: SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

    I love hot topics like this. I think we all do agree judging by the responses. My beef is that people spend so much time on linking and forget what is really most important.....have great content and make the site easy for people to navigate. You can be number one in rankings, but if people hate your store it's worthless.
    As for items in the supplemental index, there is the issue of bleeding, however with great content, this can work to your advantage. The supplemental index results will display when people do very specific searches and Google cannot locate results from the primary index. It's difficult to know which pages you have in the supplemental index now, but if you construct excellent content on these pages, you will be found by those people fine tuning their searches. Focus first on content and usability and the rest will fall into place much better.
    Michael Davidson
    Picturesque
    http://picturesqueweb.com

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    6,854

    Default Re: SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

    The problem is not what we, the so called experts debate, but that they average store owner wants a "quick fix" to #1 search ratings. You can ALWAYS tell a Charletan SEO expert from a Good one, reqardless of where they come down on debates such as these. Its simple, SEO Charletans advertise the THEY can get you better search ratings by following THEIR formula. There is no forumula. There are only basic rules that one needs to apply to THEIR site...with varying degrees of advantage.

    Good content is always the toughest...but it does pay extra dividends; not only does it improve Search returns and page rank, it also makes your site more likely to actually capture an order.

    Personally, I think store owners should concentrate more on conversions rather than search optimization. Once conversions are where they should be, the return on investement for SEO is multiplied by several fold.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    2,421

    Default Re: SEO for Products in Multiple Categories/Related Products

    Dead on Bruce!
    Dan - Glendale Designs
    Offering advanced Miva Merchant design, development and marketing services for over 16 years.
    http://www.glendaledesigns.com
    sales@glendaledesigns.com
    623.322.6066

    Follow us on Twitter

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