SEO for PrestaShop web shops

PrestaShop is a powerful and flexible e-commerce platform distinguished by its customizability and ability to support a wide range of online stores. From small startups to growing mid-sized businesses, PrestaShop provides the tools and features needed to create and maintain a successful online presence. In this article, I’ll talk more about optimizing the SEO for PrestaShop web shops .

Basic settings for SEO in PrestaShop

PrestaShop offers extensive options for configuring SEO and URL settings, which is crucial for improving your shop’s visibility in search engines:

  1. Enable friendly URLs: Go to ‘Shop Parameters’ > ‘Traffic & SEO’. In the ‘SEO & URLs’ tab, you can enable ‘Friendly URL,’ which ensures readable URLs instead of URLs with parameters. This is better for both users and search engines.
  2. Meta titles and descriptions: On the same page, you can set unique meta titles and descriptions for each page of your webshop, such as home page, product pages, and category pages. Use relevant keywords to improve your SEO.
  3. URL restructuring: You can modify the URL structure to make it even more search engine friendly by using keywords in the URLs of product, category, and CMS pages.

What are good extensions for SEO in PrestaShop?

There are several powerful extensions available for PrestaShop that can help improve your shop’s SEO:

  • SEO Expert: This module automatically fills in meta tags and social media meta tags, which is essential for SEO and sharing on social media.
  • Google Sitemap: This extension automatically generates your sitemap, which helps search engines navigate your webshop more efficiently.
  • Page Cache Ultimate: Although not directly an SEO tool, this module helps improve the loading speed of your site, which is an important factor for search engine rankings.

Read more about SEO within the largest CMSes

I wrote an article on optimizing SEO for all the major platforms that websites are built on. Check out the full list below and read on.

Product page optimization in PrestaShop

  1. Product titles: Create titles that are both descriptive and contain the most important keywords. This helps search engines and users quickly understand the content and purpose of your product pages.
  2. Product descriptions: Write unique and keyword-rich descriptions for each product. This not only improves SEO, but also the user experience by providing valuable information.
  3. Images: Use the alt text feature for each product image to add relevant keywords. This improves the findability of your products through search engines.

The importance of structured data and schema markup for product pages

Structured data and schema markup are essential to provide search engines with detailed information about the products on your pages. This can lead to richer search results, including prices, availability, and reviews:

  1. Add schema markup: You can add structured data manually to the HTML of your product pages, or use a PrestaShop module such as “Google Structured Data Markup” to automate this process.
  2. Rich snippets: By implementing schema markup, your product pages can appear in search results as rich snippets, which can improve visibility and click rate.

By applying these strategies, you can significantly improve the SEO of your PrestaShop webshop, resulting in higher search engine visibility, more traffic to your site, and ultimately an increase in conversions.

Category page SEO strategies in PrestaShop

In PrestaShop, optimizing category pages is crucial for improving the visibility and structure of your shop for both users and search engines:

  1. Use relevant keywords: Do keyword research to find relevant and frequently searched keywords for your category pages. Use these keywords naturally in the category titles, descriptions, and within the content on those pages.
  2. Navigation structure: Provide a clear and logical navigation structure that makes it easy for visitors and search engines to find category pages and understand how the site is organized.

Using meta tags and descriptions on category pages

In PrestaShop, you can add meta-titles and meta-descriptions to category pages to improve SEO:

  1. Add meta-titles and descriptions: Go to the PrestaShop dashboard and navigate to ‘Catalog’ > ‘Categories’. Choose the category you want to edit and scroll down to ‘SEO Settings’. Here you can enter the meta title and meta description. Make sure these are concise, relevant, and include the chosen keywords.
  2. Use of keywords: Implement chosen keywords in a natural and relevant way in both the title and description to increase the likelihood that your category pages will rank high for those terms.

Content Marketing and Blogging with PrestaShop

A blog can be a powerful tool to improve the SEO of your PrestaShop webshop by providing fresh, relevant content:

  1. Install blog module: PrestaShop does not have a built-in blog feature by default, but you can install a blog module such as “PrestaBlog” from the PrestaShop Addons Marketplace to add this functionality.
  2. Categories and tags: Use categories and tags to organize your blog posts, which not only helps with user navigation but also SEO.

Tips for creating SEO-friendly blog content

  1. Focus on Quality and Relevance: Write content that adds value for your target audience. Use keywords strategically without over-optimization.
  2. Use of Headings: Divide your content using H1, H2, and H3 tags to improve readability and SEO.
  3. Internal Linking: Link to relevant product pages or other blog posts within your shop to strengthen the site structure and increase page value.

Can you list Article structured data in PrestaShop?

Yes, it is possible to add article structured data to your blog posts in PrestaShop, which can help your posts stand out in search results:

  1. Manual addition: This may require technical knowledge, as you may need to modify the HTML of your blog post template to include the correct schema markup.
  2. Modules: Some SEO or blog modules may support automatically adding structured data to your blog posts. Search within the PrestaShop Addons Marketplace for modules that offer this functionality.

By following these strategies, you can improve the SEO of your PrestaShop webshop, increasing your visibility in search engines and ultimately generating more traffic and conversions.

Using rich snippets and schema markup in PrestaShop

Rich snippets play a crucial role in how products are displayed in search results. They add additional details such as reviews, prices and inventory information, making potential buyers see useful information faster and more inclined to click. In a competitive online market, these details can be the deciding factor for customers deciding between your online store and a competitor.

How to add Schema Markup to your PrestaShop site

  1. Use of modules: PrestaShop offers modules such as “Google Rich Snippets,” which automatically add the necessary schema markup to your product pages. These modules greatly simplify the process, as they allow you to add schema markup without diving directly into the code.
  2. Manual implementation: For more control, you can manually add schema markup to your theme’s HTML. This requires modifying the product.tpl files within your theme to insert the schema.org syntax for products, reviews and more.

Speed and mobile optimization in PrestaShop

The loading speed of your online store is a crucial factor for both SEO and user experience. Search engines such as Google use page speed as a ranking factor, meaning faster sites can rank higher. Moreover, visitors expect fast load times; a delay of just a few seconds can lead to higher bounce rates and lost sales.

Extensions for page speed optimization in PrestaShop?

Several modules are available to improve the speed of your PrestaShop shop:

  • Page Cache Ultimate: This module reduces the load time of your pages by caching, resulting in faster load times for your visitors.
  • Google PageSpeed Insights: Provides insight into your site’s performance on both desktop and mobile and provides recommendations for improvements.
  • JCH Optimize: Improves loading speed by minimizing HTTP requests, combining CSS and JS files, and optimizing images.

Tips for optimizing your PrestaShop shop for mobile devices

  1. Responsive design: Make sure your theme is responsive. This means that the design of your site automatically adapts to different screen sizes and devices.
  2. Optimize images: Use properly sized optimized images to reduce loading time. Tools such as TinyPNG can help reduce file size without visible loss of quality.
  3. Minimize the use of plugins: While plugins can add features, too many plugins can affect the loading speed of your site. Critically evaluate which plugins are really necessary.
  4. Use AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages): Consider using AMP pages for your PrestaShop webshop. AMP pages load almost instantly on mobile devices, improving the user experience and providing potential SEO benefits.

By applying these strategies, you not only improve the SEO performance of your PrestaShop webshop, but also ensure a better experience for your visitors, regardless of the device they use.

How to install Google Analytics in a PrestaShop webshop?

Integrating Google Analytics with your PrestaShop webshop provides valuable insights into visitor behavior and helps optimize your SEO strategies. Follow these steps to install Google Analytics:

  1. Create a Google Analytics account (if you don’t already have one) and create a new property specifically for your shop.
  2. Obtain your tracking ID: After creating a property for your shop, Google will provide a Tracking ID. This ID usually starts with ‘UA-‘ followed by a series of numbers.
  3. Install the Google Analytics module in PrestaShop: Go to the back office of your PrestaShop, navigate to ‘Modules’ and look for the ‘Google Analytics’ module. Install and activate this module.
  4. Configure the module: Open the installed Google Analytics module and enter your Tracking ID. Follow the prompts to complete the installation. Make sure you select all relevant options you want to track.

How to install the Google Tag Manager in a PrestaShop webshop?

Google Tag Manager (GTM) streamlines the management of your tags for tracking and analytics without having to dive directly into the code. Here’s how to install GTM in PrestaShop:

  1. Create a GTM account and set up a new container for your web shop. Choose ‘Web’ as the platform.
  2. Get your GTM container code, which consists of two parts: one before in the <head> of your pages and one immediately after the <body> tag opens.
  3. Add the GTM code to your PrestaShop theme: This can be done manually by editing the code or by using a GTM module if available. For manual addition, edit the header.tpl and footer.tpl files in your theme and paste the respective code snippets.
  4. Test the implementation: Use the GTM Preview mode to verify that the container is installed correctly and that the tags are firing properly.

How to install the Google Search Console in a PrestaShop Webshop?

Google Search Console is an essential tool for monitoring and improving your PrestaShop webshop’s visibility in Google. Here’s how you can set it up:

  1. Add your PrestaShop webshop to Google Search Console by entering and verifying your webshop’s domain. Google offers several verification methods, such as uploading an HTML file, adding a DNS record, or using an HTML tag.
  2. For HTML tag verification: Choose the HTML tag option, copy the meta tag provided by Google.
  3. Add the meta tag to your PrestaShop webshop: You can do this in PrestaShop by going to ‘Design’ > ‘Theme & Logo’, navigating to the ‘SEO & URLs’ section, and pasting the tag in the ‘SEO Options’ section.
  4. Verify your ownership: Return to Google Search Console and click ‘Verify’ to complete the process.

SEO company for SEO for PrestaShop Webshops

For Web shop owners looking to take their SEO to the next level, hiring a specialized SEO company can be a worthwhile investment. An SEO company experienced with PrestaShop can offer specialized services, such as:

  • Technical SEO Audits: Identify and correct technical issues that may affect search engine performance.
  • Content Optimization: Help in creating optimized content and performing keyword research.
  • Link building: Develop a strategy to obtain high-quality backlinks.
  • Performance reporting: Provide detailed analysis and reports on the SEO performance of your shop.

Please feel free to contact me if you would like to get started with this.

How does PrestaShop compare to other CMSs?

PrestaShop is one of the popular e-commerce platforms among other content management systems (CMSs) such as WooCommerce, Shopify, Magento, and BigCommerce. Each platform has its unique features, advantages and disadvantages. Here’s how PrestaShop compares to these other e-commerce CMSs:

PrestaShop vs. WooCommerce

  • User base and flexibility: WooCommerce runs on WordPress, which gives it a huge user base and extremely high flexibility due to the thousands of plugins and themes available. PrestaShop is also flexible and has a large number of modules and themes, but cannot match the extensive WordPress community.
  • Ease of use: WooCommerce benefits from the user-friendliness of WordPress, making it a good choice for users already familiar with the WordPress platform. PrestaShop has a slightly steeper learning curve, but offers an intuitive back-end dashboard for management.
  • Cost: Both platforms are open-source and free to download, but the total cost of running an online shop can vary depending on the hosting, themes, plugins or modules required.

PrestaShop vs. Shopify

  • Hosting: Shopify is a hosted solution, meaning users pay a monthly fee that includes hosting and access to the platform. PrestaShop is self-hosted, which means you have to arrange your own hosting, but have more control over your store.
  • Ease of use: Shopify is known for its ease of use and is ideal for beginners or businesses that want to get online quickly without worrying about technical details. PrestaShop offers more advanced customization options, which is great for users who want more control.
  • Customizability: PrestaShop offers more flexibility for customization and is open-source, while Shopify has limitations on customization unless you use their API or more advanced subscriptions.

PrestaShop vs. Magento

  • Scalability: Magento is known for its power and scalability, ideal for large enterprises and complex e-commerce needs. PrestaShop is better suited for small to medium businesses and may not be as well suited for very large inventories without modifications.
  • Complexity and cost: Magento can be complex to manage and often requires a developer for installation and maintenance, which can lead to higher costs. PrestaShop is generally more user-friendly and cost-effective for smaller businesses.

PrestaShop vs. BigCommerce

  • Platform type: Like Shopify, BigCommerce is a hosted solution that offers ease of use and integrated hosting. PrestaShop requires self-hosting, which requires more technical knowledge but offers more freedom.
  • Functionality and customization: BigCommerce offers a wide range of built-in features, but with fewer customization options compared to PrestaShop, which offers a more open development platform with access to the code for extensive customization.

Each e-commerce platform has its strengths and weaknesses, and the choice depends largely on the specific needs, technical skill, and budget of the business owner. PrestaShop is a strong platform with a good balance between ease of use and customizability, making it an excellent choice for a wide range of e-commerce projects.

Summary

As a robust and easy-to-use e-commerce solution, PrestaShop offers business owners the freedom to customize and optimize their webshop as they wish. With its extensive functionality and strong community, PrestaShop is well positioned compared to other e-commerce platforms, making it an excellent choice for businesses looking to maximize their online sales.

Senior SEO-specialist

Ralf van Veen

Senior SEO-specialist
Five stars
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I have been working for 10 years as an independent SEO specialist for companies (in the Netherlands and abroad) that want to rank higher in Google in a sustainable manner. During this period I have consulted A-brands, set up large-scale international SEO campaigns and coached global development teams in the field of search engine optimization.

With this broad experience within SEO, I have developed the SEO course and helped hundreds of companies with improved findability in Google in a sustainable and transparent way. For this you can consult my portfolio, references and collaborations.

This article was originally published on 16 April 2024. The last update of this article was on 16 April 2024. The content of this page was written and approved by Ralf van Veen. Learn more about the creation of my articles in my editorial guidelines.