Headless SEO On-Page Best Practices
Over the past couple of years we’ve seen a worldwide increase in businesses opting for a headless CMS due to the additional development benefits surrounding flexibility and control of the backend. But how do businesses achieve this while achieving strong organic results?
Read our guide on headless SEO best practices to help you achieve organic success.
Best SEO Practices for Headless CMSs
Despite headless CMSs altering the way in which content is deployed across different channels, it still has the same capabilities SEOs would look for in an organic friendly platform. Therefore, the best practices for headless SEO aren’t too dissimilar to any other SEO strategy.
Like any URLs, it’s recommended to keep headless CMS URLs short, concise and (where possible) include your main keyword to ensure they are user and search engine friendly. With this in mind, when using a headless SEO platform you are usually able to edit and amend any of your URLs in the backend of the website (usually this field can be found on the relevant page).
When choosing an off-the-shelf platform like BigCommerce, you can easily apply different heading hierarchies to your pages and content such as H1s, H2s, H3s and H4s. This helps search engines understand your webpage and ensure your site is accessible.
However, opting for a headless CMS heading hierarchy is significantly harder to create. This is because content is decoupled based on the layout of the page. Therefore, you need to be mindful of this when creating your webpages.
Unlike most off-the-shelf solutions (such as WooCommerce or Shopify), when opting for a headless CMS you’ll have to create and request every meta tag (including meta data) you wish to use on the site. Whereas, on other platforms you will usually find the meta tags are automatically populated.
Having to create the meta data for every page is more time consuming. However, to speed up and streamline this process, you’re able to create rules to help automate this.
Most eCommerce websites have products available in several different variations e.g colours and sizes. Due to this, using facets and filters on category pages can provide a better user experience. But it’s important to tell search engines which pages they should crawl/index and which ones they should ignore.
This is where canonical tags come in - to ultimately help minimise any content duplication.
Like other platforms, headless CMSs should feature the canonical tags within the relevant pages <head>. To help save time and make this process less manual, it is possible to create rules.
To help search engines better understand the content on your pages, we recommend using JSON-LD schema markup, such as product, FAQ, and article markup, to make your page eligible for a rich result.
To do this on a headless CMS, you will need to request a field so that you can add your schema markup. To make this easier, we recommend creating this field at a template level compared to a URL level.
If you’re an enterprise company currently using a pre-packed solution and are after greater levels of control and flexibility with your eCommerce website, then you should definitely consider a headless CMS.
However, it’s important for you to be aware of how to configure and manage the various on-page elements to ensure your transition over to a headless architecture goes smoothly.