Introduced in Feature Pack 3

SEO for Version 7 Feature Pack 3 or later

Search engines, such as Google, are one of the most important channels for customers to reach your store. Using search engine optimization (SEO) to improve page ranking can result in increased traffic and revenue. The SEO functionality for WebSphere Commerce Version 7 Feature pack 3 or later improves online search page ranking for your store. The search page ranking is improved by allowing users to create shorter SEO-friendly URLs with meaningful keywords. This version includes enhanced Management Center tools that business users can use to influence page ranking. Users can influence page ranking by changing the URL and metadata information, using an improved Sitemap generator that indexes all the SEO-friendly URLs, and 301 URL redirect rules.
Search engine optimization for WebSphere Commerce provides the following functionality:
  • Creating simple, static URLs for store pages that shoppers and search robots can easily understand
  • Optimizing page metadata to improve search engine page rank
  • Creating 301 URL redirection when a web page is moved
  • Generating site maps to submit to search engine providers

Simplifying URLs

Use the following methods to simplify store URLs.
  • The standard context root of the store URL is long and contains identifiers that are irrelevant to shoppers. Shortening the length of the context root to a single word such as store or shop shortens the URL:
    Shortening the context root
    Context root URL
    Full http://hostname/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product2_10001_10001_10029_-1_10007_10001_10001_ProductDisplayErrorView
    Short http://hostname/shop/Product2_10001_10001_10029_-1_10007_10001_10001_ProductDisplayErrorView
    For more information, see Shortening the context root of a store URL.
  • Use keywords for categories and products to create a URL that is easy for shoppers and search robots to read and understand:
    Use keywords for categories and products
    Original URL: URL with full context root and old query string http://hostname/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product2_10001_10001_10029_-1_10007_10001_10001_ProductDisplayErrorView
    Rewritten URL: Final SEO-friendly URL with shortened context root and shorter, easier to understand keyword-based ending http://hostname/shop/side-tables/two-drawer-side-table
For more information about SEO-friendly URL construction, see SEO-friendly URL construction overview.

Optimizing page metadata to improve search engine indexing

Search engines use the page title and metadescription of a page to influence search results. Indexing allows a shopper to use a search engine to search for a red leather couch, and view search results with links to red leather couches for sale. The SEO feature creates unique information for title and metadescription tags for each web page to describe the product or page contents. Every product in a store is assigned unique metadata to ensure that the product is found by a search engine. The title tag indicates to users and search engines the topic of a particular page, which displays in the first line of a search result. The metadescription tag of a page provides search engines with a summary of the page contents, which appear on search engine results pages.

For more information, see Search engine optimization (SEO) title and meta description (TMD) data for store web pages.

Creating 301 URL redirects for moved store pages

If a URL is changed by either WebSphere Commerce or a business user, a 301 redirect is automatically generated between the old URL and the new URL.

For more information about URL redirects, see URL redirects for SEO Overview.

Generating site maps to submit to search engine providers

A site map is a full list of all the pages in your store. This site map is submitted to search engines so that they know what to crawl and index. The Sitemap Generator is enhanced in Feature Pack 3 to index the new friendly website addresses and search landing pages.

For more information about site maps, see WebSphere Commerce integration with sitemaps.

Limitations of Search Engine Optimization

  • SEO-friendly URLs are not supported in the IBM Gift Center for the Madisons starter store.
  • Search engine optimization is not supported for use with content versioning.