by Homerun Nievera, Negosentro.com | Solving CMS problems is one of the five vital lessons SEO experts should learn. Let us explore from an SEO point of view the five problems, which are a must watch with regards to a content management system, and also deal with some of the functionality that you must consider when analyzing the SEO-friendliness of a content management system.
1. Should be Able to Customize Meta Data, Page Titles
Any good content management system must permit customization of:
- Page title
- Meta keyword tag
- Meta description tag
- H tags
The fields mentioned above must be able to be independent of each other if preferred even if the default conduct does make them dependant. The choice must be offered to customize any of these fields with no need of a character limitation. But there must also be an ability to auto populate these fields depending on custom rules so as the population of these fields can be automated if necessary.
2. Drop-Down Navigation Menus Integrated in CSS
These navigation menus are essential internal link structures, which contribute to the performance of SEO. They act as votes of relevancy from each page of your website back to your most essential pages. It is crucial that they can be indexed by search engines.
In addition, ensure that the link text in your drop down menus is customized and that the link text is not reliant on the title of the page, which it points to.
3. Structure of your URL
Making sure that your content management system is able to create URLs that are user-friendly is very important. It is recommended but not needed that you are capable of creating produce static, keyword focused URLs (for instance http: //www .domain .com/keyword1/keyword2/index .html).
According to Matthew Jones, a specialist at Vancouver SEO Services, the number one problem with CMS systems that should be taken into consideration is that they have a concrete canonical structure. For instance, in case you have a product page where the URL depends on the navigation path, you might have problems if the product shows up in more than one category. In this case make sure your CMS is applying right canonical tags to avoid duplicate content issues. At times, bad code will cause a website to write a different canonical tag for each URL version the (totally missing the whole point of the canonical tag). Ensure that you spot-check your URLs, particularly on CMS-driven and e-commerce websites.
If your content management system generates more than one URL for the same page of content, you might have a duplicate content issue. In addition, avoid CMS systems that make use of dynamic URLs or session IDs, which change whenever they get a new visitor.
4. XML Sitemap Creation Function
You will find several methods to create XML sitemaps, so this is not a deal breaker if a content management system cannot create an XML sitemap. But it certainly does make life less difficult if your CMS system can automate the creation of your website map.
5. 301 Redirects, Not 302
Ensure that any redirects created by your content management system return a 301 header status code instead of a 302 to guarantee right indexing. CMS systems must by default support 301 redirects and prevent meta refreshes or 302 redirects. 301 redirects are the only mechanism which transfers link connectivity metrics from the old to new URL. 302 redirects don’t transfer link connectivity metrics and might result in duplicate content issues.
These are just some of the many considerations when handling SEO for CMS-run websites. Since most SEO service providers are accustomed to managing static websites, they might not know the necessities and issues of working with websites driven by CMS. You should understand the technical outcome for all SEO site suggestions to make sure they will benefit your CMS content authors and your content management system platform.
In case you are having trouble implementing your SEO strategy, contact us today. We would be pleased to discuss a strategy, which will meet your needs.
Homerun Nievera is the publisher of Negosentro.com and WorldExecutivesDigest.com. He has interests in several tech and digital businesses as director and chief strategist.