The Basics of Good SEO: 3dcart SEO Tools

Now that you know how keywords and meta tags work, you can put that information into practice with ease by using 3dcart’s SEO Tools page. In this lesson, we’re going to explain the key tools in this page that you should know how to use in order to keep your site optimized.

But first, in order to navigate to the SEO Tools page, you need to log in to your admin dashboard. From there, you’ll click on the Marketing tab, and then click on SEO Tools.

URLS and Redirects

Under the “General Settings” tab is where most of your tools regarding URLs and redirects will be. The following are the settings you should pay attention to:

  • Custom File Names: As the name suggests, you can use this setting to create custom URLs for your pages. This is important if you’d like to give your page a more SEO-friendly URL, rather than a string of numbers and letters.
  • Hide Category Header/Footer from Pagination: If your product categories are set to paginate, that means that the category header and footer will show “page 1, page 2, page 3” etc. for whichever page you’re on. This can actually penalize you in terms of SEO, because search engines may see this as identical content. By hiding the header and footer from pagination on your category pages, you’ll be able to avoid that.
  • IP Canonicalization: This setting is used to ensure that your IP address always redirects to your domain name. This is to avoid search engines from indexing your site under both the IP address and domain name, harming your ranking due to duplicate content.
  • 301 Page Redirects: When a user navigates to a page on your site that doesn’t exist, they’re taken to a 301 redirect page. This setting allows you to customize that page, so you can control what users see when they land on it.
  • Enable Canonical URLs: A canonical URL is what you want visitors to see and search engines to classify as the absolute authoritative URL for your site. This is important for SEO, because multiple URLs with the same content can get your site penalized by search engines.
  • Enable AMP for Product Pages: AMP, or accelerated mobile pages, is a type of coding that you can enable for your product pages so that they load and display faster on mobile. Google favors sites that are AMP enabled for this reason, making them good for SEO.

Sitemap

When we talk about your sitemap, we’re referring to a file that provides information about your site to search engines. This information usually includes the pages, videos, and other files on your site, along with how they relate to each other. Keeping your sitemap up-to-date and accurate is important for SEO, because this is what search engines use to “crawl” your site to index it.

  • Sitemap URL: This is where you’ll enter the URL that either Google Search Console or Bing Webmaster Tools can use to find your sitemap.
  • Refresh Sitemap: Since your sitemap needs to be accurate and up-to-date, it’s refreshed at regular intervals automatically. However, if for whatever reason you need to refresh it manually, you can do that here.
  • Sitemap Submission: With this tool, you can automatically submit your store’s sitemap to Bing and Google.
  • HTML Sitemaps: These URLs are used to submit to search engines for more refined indexing. This can be done for your product index, categories index, and manufacturers index.

Meta Tags

As we’ve already discussed in the previous lesson, meta tags are read by search engines and human users in order to understand what your content is about and how it’s organized. In the meta tag section of your SEO Tool page, you’ll find two important options:

  • Enable Product Dynamic Tags: When this setting is enabled, your 3dcart store will dynamically create meta tags based on information on your site, such as product information, descriptions, and names. This provides information to search engines in a much more organized fashion.
  • Home Page Meta Tags: This option allows you to edit the meta tags for your home page title, header and footer. You can change these from the default to that they can be more optimized for your store.

Open graph meta tags are special types of meta tags that allow search engines to better classify your web pages. These types of meta tags are especially useful in social media, because they’re what are used to specify how content is shown when someone shares your product pages.

You’ll also see a tool called “product page rich snippets” in this section. The headline and short page information that Google provides in a search listing on their SERPs, or search engine results pages, is referred to as a “snippet.” A further refined version of this is the rich snippet which can include more detailed information in the search listing, depending on the type of content in the page. This can manifest as:

  • Average star rating and price ranges for restaurants
  • Caloric information and prep time for recipes
  • Product price and availability for an online store

3dcart’s product page rich snippets tool will offer exactly what that last example says, including more attributes such as average rating, sale price, etc. Utilizing rich snippets for your products is a great way for your listing to jump out at searchers on the SERPs.

Don’t Ignore Social Media!

If you thought that social media and SEO are two separate entities, then think again. Social media and SEO are becoming more and more linked by the day, so it’s definitely something to take advantage of when managing your site’s optimization. The 3dcart SEO Tools page includes two different ways of setting up social media on your website: Facebook like buttons and social bookmarking.

By enabling a Facebook like button on your online store, this allows users to make connections with your pages and share content back to their friends on Facebook, all with the click of a button.

With the social links tool, you’re able to add social media icons onto your store that users can click to navigate to your various social media profiles.

These social media tools are great for increasing organic traffic, which search engines will look at in order to list you on their SERPs. For example, Google actually uses ranking signals like the frequency that your content has been shared, tweeted, liked, or posted on social media to help determine how high your site will be ranked. Adding easy ways for visitors on your site to share your content on social media will definitely make a difference in your SEO.

Google Analytics

Utilizing Google Analytics on your site is crucial for SEO, so don’t ignore these tools. With the Google tools section, you’ll be able to enter your tracking ID and Google Webmaster Tools Verification Meta Tag.

If you don’t know what that means, don’t worry; in the next lesson, we’re going to give you the run down on what you need to know about Google Analytics and the Google Search Console.

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