Magento SEO – XML Sitemap For Google and Other search engines

Wednesday, 3. August 2011

Google and many major search engines can crawl your site for some useful information that can the be exposed to their search results.

The best way to share your store’s information with such crawlers is via the XML sitemap. The easiest way to provide a sitemap of your store to the search engines is probably through the use of robots.txt file.

The Sitemap directive of the robots.txt will help to direct the search engines to the location of the sitemap file for your store. Here is how the directive is specified inside the file.

 Sitemap: http://www.yourdomain.com/sitemap.xml

You can also register the your store’s sitemap manually to search engines any time. You can register sitemaps to:

Google Webmaster tools
Yahoo! Site Explorer
Bing Webmaster Center

There is also a free Magento extension that may help automate manual submission to major search engines which can be found here XML sitemap submission

Magento and Google feeds – What if Brand, GTIN or MPN attributes are missing from my store?

Wednesday, 3. August 2011

I have been asked many times about these 3 recommended Google feeds attributes I have decided to write a blog about it!

The question I keep receiving is – What if I don’t have Brand, GTIN or MPN on my store, will my feeds still be OK? My answer is simple, No, they will fail Google’s validation.

If you don’t know, the new Google feeds format, ( Learn more ) now requires store owners to submit at least two of these 3 attributes. For stores that have this information, already life is easy! For many who don’t, the temptation has always been to whack in some random values and hope for the best!

I will strictly advice you do NOT submit any random, guessed or made up values to Google as this is purely asking for trouble. These values (especially MPN and GTIN) are set by manufacturers and should be respected at all the times. These details are set for Global trade and setting up some random values will first, deceive your customers and secondly you may be violating manufacturers terms of use of their products.

The best way to deal with this issues if there is no way of getting the information is to contact Google and ask them for Feed Exemption. Once approved, you can then submit your feeds without MPN, GTIN or brand.

You can submit your request here:

Google feeds Exemption

Apparel Products:

Another thing to note; although Google is asking for at least two of these attributes, if you are submitting apparel products, one of these attributes must be brand

This means: brand and GTIN OR brand and MPN will pass. GTIN and MPN will fail.