Faceted navigation, also known as parametric search or faceted search, is a technique website designers use to help users find specific information on a website. This type of navigation allows users to filter results by category, improving the user experience. It also helps with SEO. Faceted navigation can also hurt your SEO if it’s not used correctly. To make sure your faceted navigation is effective from an SEO standpoint, there are a few best practices you can follow:
Understanding How Faceted Navigation Works
When shopping online, have you ever noticed how some sites let you narrow down your search results by different criteria? For example, you might be able to search for women’s clothing by size, color, style, and price all on the same page. This is called faceted navigation, and it’s a great way to help shoppers find exactly what they’re looking for.
Faceted navigation gets its name from the fact that it allows shoppers to narrow their search results using multiple “facets” or criteria. Each facet represents a different way of looking at the products in the search results. For example, the size facet lets shoppers see all of the available sizes for a particular product, while the color facet lets shoppers see all of the available colors for a product.
Issues Between Faceted Navigation and SEO
While faceted navigation can be helpful for users, it can also pose challenges for search engine optimization (SEO). In particular, faceted navigation can create duplicate content issues, leading to search engine indexing problems.
There are some ways to deal with the duplicate content issue. One is to use canonical tags, which tell search engines which specific version of a page is the “master” version. This can be effective, but it’s vital to ensure that the canonical version is what you want users to see.
Ultimately, the best way to deal with the challenges posed by faceted navigation is to plan and design your navigation in a way that considers SEO. By doing this, you can ensure that your site is both user-friendly and search engine-friendly.
Faceted Navigation and SEO Best Practices
Here are some proven methods on how to ensure an effective faceted navigation that won’t negatively affect your SEO efforts:
Keep Users in Mind
Your user is the most important thing to think about when creating content. Write for them and try to include the things they would search for. Keyword research can help you understand what those things are.
Create Canonical Tags
The goal of canonicalization is to ensure that there is only one “canonical” URL for each piece of content on a website. This is important because search engines may index multiple versions of the same content (e.g., if it is accessible via numerous URLs), and we want to ensure that users are directed to the correct URL when they click on a search result. By specifying a canonical URL, we can tell search engines which version of the content is the “true” version and, therefore, which URL should be used in the search results.
Google Search Console Can Be Used
When a search engine finds duplicate content on a website, it will tag it as such and not index it. This can negatively impact the website’s integrity and cause a decrease in the reliability of priority pages.
Google Search Console is a tool that can be used to detect any unusual indexing ratio. If the number of indexed pages is substantially more than the pages crawled, your website likely has duplicate content problems that need to be fixed. Also, if you see many crawled pages that are not indexed, it can indicate that Google does not consider those pages high-quality and are probably duplicate.
Use Nofollow Links for Internal Links
If you don’t want search engines to follow certain links on your website, you can use the “nofollow” tag. This will prevent them from discovering unimportant pages and wasting time crawling them. However, you may need to do some coding to achieve this. Also, if you want certain faceted pages to be included in the search results, you may need to selectively use “nofollow” tags, which can be difficult. It’s best to seek help from a professional SEO company to ensure you don’t end up with a broken website.
Faceted navigation, when done right, can be a powerful tool for eCommerce sites. It allows users to narrow down their search results by various criteria, making it easier to find the right product. When designing a faceted navigation system, it is crucial to consider the user experience and ensure the navigation is easy to use. An expert in SEO in Birmingham, AL, can help you.
To know more about Faceted Navigation and SEO, consult a trusted digital marketing agency in Birmingham, AL, like Nick the Marketer. We can help you with your SEO efforts and more. Get in touch with us today to find out about our services!