There are several myths out there regarding Volusion’s SEO-friendly capabilities, and the fact is, our platform offers a number of powerful tools that can help you customize and optimize the various categories and products on your site. A common misconception we hear is that Volusion doesn’t offer customizable URLs. We’re here to set the record straight: you can customize your URLs to your heart’s content.
The Importance of Customizable URLs
Why do we need a customizable URL functionality? Search engines look at a huge number of factors when they decide which website is the best result to return to users. One of those factors includes a URL that describes what’s on the page. This is one of the many ways Google and other search engines figure out just what a page is all about.
How to Customize Your URLs
Volusion stores come pre-configured with generic URLs so you can make them anything you want. Let’s go over some best practices.
1. Turn on automatic 301 redirects
This one is crucial for SEO – it ensures that both users and search engines will be able to find the new, SEO-friendly URLs when you change them. And it’s as easy as the click of a button! From your store admin, click Settings > Config Variables and it’ll be the first option in the chart. Make sure to hit Save once you’ve ticked the box!
2. Where to find the section for changing the URL text
This option lives in each category and product page. Simply navigate to the page you want, click “Advanced Info” > “Search Engine Optimization” and you’ll see a box named “Category/Product URL Text”. Make sure to put only numbers and letters in this field. We also suggest using all lowercase letters, as this is more pleasing to the eye when looking at a URL.
3. Enter customized text into the URL field
Make it short, sweet and concise. The text should describe what’s on the page without extra words or fluff. For example, if you sell boxes of cookies and you have a category for each flavor, then put “chocolate chip cookies”, “peanut butter”, etc for the URL text. Don’t put “delicious chocolate chip cookies that you will love” because your URL will end up looking like this:
Instead, it should look like this:
See how long the first option is compared to the second one? Users are more likely to share and click on short URLs that tell them what they can expect to see. The “_s” part of the URL near the end of the URL designates a category page. This will be replaced by a “_p” for product pages and a “_a” for article pages.
Also make sure to enable SEO Friendly URLs for your site by going to Marketing>SEO, and then scrolling down to the Search Engine Friendly URLs section. Check the box next to “Enable Search Engine Friendly URLs (Recommended)”.
If you have more questions about SEO-friendly URLs and how to use them, feel free to check out this Knowledge Base article or leave us a comment below!