Today let’s answer some of the recurrent questions that keep popping up. How the optimal Prestashop friendly URL should look like? Should it include the ID of a product?
Prestashop does not activate the SEO Url by default
Friendly URL is not activated by default with Prestashop. In order to activate this option with Prestashop in your backend, hover over the menu Preferences, click on the menu item SEO & URLS. Then scroll down to the section SET UP URLS. Configure your shop just like in the picture below.
What is the perfect friendly structure?
You have already activated the friendly url. Let’s look at what is the best url structure.
On the same SEO & URLS configuration page, scroll down to the section SCHEMA OF URLS. It shows the patterns used to generate the structure of the URLs and how they are mapped to the resources in Prestashop. At the first sight, it includes the product’s parent category, its ID, its rewrite-link property.
You could also customize this field with most of the other product properties like reference, price, meta title, meta description. Shall you add the extension .html to your url structure? There is no recommendation that it would help you, but it has been a long standing myth. The other extensions will not help either. Even Matt Cutts from Google has said a word about it in a video
How many words should you use in your slug?
In general you shouldn’t write a product or category page title to please Google or just for SEO sake. Instead you should describe your items in the way they are human friendly. In other words you should not stuff you url with keywords. Matt in the interview http://www.stephanspencer.com/matt-cutts-interview/ would recommend that you make your title four of five-word long. The Google algorithm just weights less the other words and don’t give them as much credit.
Removing product ID from URL
Removing ID from url makes links look pretty. It doesn’t bring anything to SEO and requires hacking the native Prestashop behaviour. For product pages for example, it uses the product title as query parameter for the database. Currently Prestashop uses the product ID from the URL to retrieve the product from the database. Then it uses the product title as slug. It allows e-merchants to include keywords in the product url. Any changes on the product title will not have any impact on your ranking in search engine as prestashop can redirect automatically to the matching friendly url.
Features Prestashop Addons
You lose this flexibility with the feature you are requesting. You will probably have to notify all the key search engines when you make any small change. What is more it will lead to 404 errors. Sooner and later, this will damage your ranking in the most popular search engines.
Overall, I was never able to find any recommendations from Google or any SEO experts with regard to this topic.
For all these reasons, I’m not planning to develop such module.
It may change in the future, then I could consider going into that direction.
What are Google recommendations?
Google recommends that you keep the url simple. It doesn’t state that product ID would damage your SEO ranking as long as you are not using irrelevant parameter or number in your url like session ID, endless affiliate ID or referral ID. Find our more at https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/76329?hl=en
In this post you have learnt how to configure and generate seo clean url for Prestashop. Make sure the changes on any URL on your website are handled properly in the way it doesn’t lead to 404 errors (page not found). Overall you should not be writing your product pages only for Google!