Skip to main content

What is product-url anyway?

I keep having to field questions about the product-url field, and since it came up yesterday, I figured I'd try to clear up all the confusion about it.

So the name product-url suggests that whatever you type in there will become the URL of that product. Unfortunately, this is not the case, or rather, not in the intuitive way. The URL you enter there will be used as the URL for that product in Yahoo Shopping, on the built-in search results page, and on the shopping cart page, however, the URL you type in there DOES NOT actually change the physical URL of the page.

What is the URL of a page in a Yahoo Store?

In any Yahoo Store built in the store editor, the URL of a page is the store's domain name and the page ID + .html. For example, in my store at www.ytimes.info, I have a page whose id is rtml101, thehrefore, the URL of that page is http://www.ytimes.info/rtml101.html.

Why would you want to change the URL?

For SEO reasons, it is believed to be better to have a URL that includes keywords. When you simply create a page in the editor, the ID (therefore the page URL) gets generated automatically based on what you type in the "Name" field. This would normally be Ok, however, what the editor does is it sort of munges the words of the Name field together to come up with the id. For example, Book about yahoo store became bookabyahsto. Well, not particularly useful for SEO....

Can you change the URL then?

The short answer is no. Once a page has been created, it's ID - therefore its URL - is set for good. The only way to "change" it is to delete that page and re-create it with a different ID.

How can you specify the ID for a new page?

There are two ways to do this. If you are using database upload and generally manage your store from a CSV file, you can add a column called ID to your data file, and specify the ID there. Or, if you usually use the editor to create pages, then switch to Advanced Mode, then click "Contents", then "New". There you can specify the ID for your new page.

For well established pages (those with good ranking) I would not mess with the URL.

Ok, so what is product-url for then?

When Yahoo Store was transformed int Yahoo Merchant Solutions, one of the ideas was to make it possible to build a yahoo store on the web hosting platform and not in the store editor. Since stores that are built using store-tags on the web hosting platform of yahoo are on a different sub-domain than the store editor pages, there had to be a way to point the built-in search results page, the shopping cart page, or yahoo shopping to those alternate locations. That's where product-url came in. So if your store is built with store tags on the web hosting side, then you can (and should) continue to use product-url to specify your product's location.

You also need to fill out the product-url field if you participate in Yahoo Shopping. All items with blank product-url entries are rejected by Product Submit and will not be included in Yahoo Shopping.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Pre-Season Checkup

With the holiday shopping season fast approaching it's a good idea to do a general checkup on your store to be sure it's ready for prime time. Below are a few things you would want to check, along with a few add-ons that are not too major in scope, but which are often neglected and give you an edge over your competition.

Can you Search and Order?
Every time we do anything major in a store we test two things: whether searching and adding to cart/ordering works. You can have nice, flashy pictures, cool animation effects, a very quick loading site, anything, but if the store search is broken or you can't add to the cart or can't check out then an ecommerce site is worth nothing.

Can you Order?
Chances are if your checkout was completely broken you'd know about it by now, but it doesn't have to be totally broken in order to scare away potential customers. So go ahead, go to your site and first do a search and make sure it works. Then, add one or more products to your…

How to create clean and efficient CSS

In a typical workday, I deal with dozens of yahoo stores and very often I have to tweak, fix, or change CSS used by these stores. While some stores have very clean and easy to follow style sheets or CSS definitions, the vast majority of stores I've seen seem to include complete hack jobs, style sheets put together completely haphazardly, or as an afterthought. While working in such a store, the idea came to me to turn my gripes into a post. So the following is my list of dos and don'ts of good CSS or style design.

1. Externalize your style sheets. This means to save your style sheets into one or more css files, and link to them using the <link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="/lib/yourstoreid/yourstyle.css"> notation, or in Editor V3.0, you can use the LINK operator.

2. Combine your style sheets into as few files as possible. Nothing worse than trying to wade through 6, 8, 10 or more different style sheets to find the color of a li…