How Faceted Navigation Impact SEO? – The Best Practices

How Faceted Navigation Impact SEO? - The Best Practices

When it comes to large websites, such as e-commerce sites with thousands upon hundreds of pages, the value of factors like crawl budget cannot be exaggerated. The key to creating these kinds of websites is to have a well-organized website architecture and a clever internal linking scheme.

Nevertheless, when attempting to accommodate many features that are a typical theme with e-commerce, achieving that successfully frequently requires new obstacles (sizes, colors, price ranges, etc.). For large websites, faceted navigation can assist in resolving these issues.

Yet, faceted navigation must be carefully planned and implemented to maintain the satisfaction of both users and search engine bots. In this article, we’ll discuss how faceted navigation impacts SEO and the best practices to overcome it.

What is Faceted Navigation?

How Faceted Navigation Impact SEO? - The Best Practices

Faceted navigation allows visitors to find it simpler to navigate and personalize a page so they can locate the specific item they’re looking for. The pages that faceted navigations produce can also assist users looking for particular goods using long-tail search terms in finding them in the search results.

As beneficial as faceted search can be for users if you’re not careful, it could seriously harm your SEO.

Size, color, cost, and material are the most often used product characteristics.

For customers to search for products based on T-shirt size and color, faceted navigation can be used as seen in the following example:

How Faceted Navigation Impact SEO? - The Best Practices

How Faceted Navigation Impact SEO?

Faceted navigation has several advantages for the user experience, but it has many negative aspects of SEO. It primarily produces duplicate material by combining numerous page combinations.

Here are a few instances of these problems and how they affect the SEO of your website:

1. Duplicate Content

Even though content largely remains the same when filters are applied to a page, new URLs are produced. This, of course, causes a duplicate content issue since you have many pages that fulfill the same purpose.

Duplicate Content

For instance, if you arrive at a page selling T-shirts and first choose a color (such as purple) and then the size (such as XL), it will produce the following page:

https://example.com/T-shirrts/purple/XL

The following page would be generated if you chose the color first, then the T-shirt size:

https://example.com/T-shirt/XL/purple

These pages are identical and have the same function. The combinations of pages will be produced largely if you have more than two facets—this is just one degree of duplication.

Another illustration of this is the option to order items according to price, which could result in many pages with the same items but in a different layout.

2. Diluted Link Equity

Due to faceted navigation filters, duplicating content might result in diluted or split link equity across duplicate copies, which can prevent search engines from indexing the best page.

The internal connection will be dispersed over several pages. There may be hundreds of different versions of a page to link to rather than just one. A number of these links lead to duplicate pages rather than one page receiving the benefit of all the hosts connected to it.

For this reason, you want users to be able to navigate at their discretion, but you also want a canonical tag to link everything together and provide Google with a clear page to index.

3. Wasted Crawl Budget

Besides this, faceted navigation may encourage Google to spend less time crawling your important pages and more time on duplicate websites, which could result in lost crawl time.

Faceted navigation can provide an almost infinite number of combinations of your main URLs; this is known as a “spider trap” since crawling bots are caught in it.

Faceted Navigation Best Practices for SEO

The best practices are probably already included in the system if you’re utilizing an out-of-the-box faceted search integration or e-commerce platform because these fixes are so dependable.

Run a Crawl

If you create duplicate content, search engines might crawl it, identify it as such, and reject indexing it. The authority for the pages that need to be crawled decreases as a result. With the little benefit to your organic presence, this contributes bloat to your site and drags crawl. For e-commerce businesses, recognizing the issue in the first place is the first step in resolving it. If that’s the case, a faceted search should be one of your main possibilities.

Set Canonical Tags

After determining the problem, work your way through a list of advised techniques to create your solution. The canonical tags of the webpage need to be verified at the initial. Each URL produced by faceted search on an e-commerce platform should canonicalize to the desired version of the page.

It is notable that Google no longer supports rel next and rel prev. However, they propose employing pagination if it will improve user experience.

Configure URL

faceted navigation

A filtered search will often return a dynamic web URL. Nonetheless, the sorting process will result in a narrative-based URL. URLs like these, which commonly include file paths to folders, show the position of the page inside the site architecture.

They could be constructed in a manner that makes it simpler for search engines to understand what the new page is about.

Block via a Robot Meta Tag

To stop specific URL parameters generated by faceted search from being indexed by search engines or search crawlers, use the robot meta tag. Simply add the following noindex tag to the head section of your page:

<meta name= “robots” content= “Noindex” >

Search engines won’t index certain pages if you do this. Better yet, you may change the tag to only allow particular crawlers, like Googlebot. To retain link equity or release crawl money, however, will do nothing.

Conclusion

Users are given an easy-to-use, accessible search experience by Faceted Navigation. However, search engine bots are given a difficult path to follow. That being said, you shouldn’t completely ignore faceted navigation. You simply need to be aware of such impacts so you can steer clear of them and preserve your limited budget.

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