Yesterday we talked about the downside of URLs in Virtuemart and how you can easily end up with too many URLs pointing to the same page. Today we’ll talk about how to solve those duplicate content problems and about how easy it is to use Search Engine Friendly URLs.
Which SEF URL Components Work With Virtuemart?
- sh404SEF. Free plugin built into to the default installation (use .html extension as it sometimes has problems with trailing slashes.
- Artio SEF. Basic version (with ads) is free. Virtuemart plugin is €11.90.
- SEF Advance. Costs €40 with free Virtuemart plugin (some bugs reported)
sh404SEF is our first recommendation but the other two are worth testing if you already have them installed.
How Can You Use SEF URLs To Solve Duplicate Content
- Check back to our earlier post about robots.txt and duplicate content so that you understand the problem.
- Publish the modules you are planning on using and then make a list of the different ways you can get to the same product page. sh404SEF does a good job of only allowing one URL per page, but Artio and SEF Advance continue to allow multiple URLs. Add lines to your robots.txt file to prevent search engines from indexing them. For example, these work with Artio:
- Disallow: /catalogue/
- Disallow: /products/
- Remember that each site is unique – test your site to remove extra URLs that are relevant to you.
- Long term: use a tool such as WebCEO to keep a list of the URLs you have listed in Google and Yahoo as an early warning system for any problems.