SEO For Demandware Consideration 1: Crawlability
Like most ecommerce platforms, crawlability and avoiding duplicated content needs to be top priority. By default, there are some challenges with the default URL structure which makes crawlability hard for Google’s webcrawler.
Most of these challenges can be fixed using the rel=canonical tag (in MOST cases). The key here is giving credit of the content to one page. The rel=canonical tag does this because it’s a way of saying to Google “Hey, this is the main page for this, we know this is duplicated.)
Demandware SEO Consideration 2: 404’s
It really should be no surprise that Google and 404 errors are a recipe for SEO disaster. While this is true for any website, Demandware needs special attention in this department.
Google has gone on record stating that they “understand” 404’s are going to happen in ecommerce due to expired products and etc. However, that doesn’t mean we should settle for a sub-par crawl experience.
Key elements to make sure you have built in to your site are the following:
- Make sure that your 404 page is returning a 404 header response. A common mistake is that the page does not return the 404 header response. When this happens, it is hard to track when a page is missing.
- When you fix a page, be sure to make a conclusive decision on the future status of a page. If a product is temporarily out of stock, for example, a 302 redirect may be sufficient. If the product is permanently “gone”, a 301 redirect may be more appropriate.
SEO for Demandware Consideration 3: Analyzing Crawl Performance
Due to the setup of Demandware, accessing crawl information is impossible.
This makes use of Google Search Console important. This will be how you are seeing how crawlers are accessing your website and this will also give clues on how to improve accessibility and etc.
All in all, Demandware is an absolutely amazing solution for ecommerce businesses. Like all platforms, there are limitations, but an ecommerce SEO consultant with experience can help you navigate those limitations.