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  • Magento Trick: How To Quickly Update All Product Meta Information

    Posted on 02/25/2013 by Joel in Magento Training, Magento Tutorial

    One of the most important things you can do in terms of SEO practices is ensure you have accurate Meta tag information for each product in your catalog. Unfortunately, if you have already set up a lot of products this would be a time consuming process as you would have to go through each one in the admin, find the meta tag field section and update each product one by one. Thankfully there is a much easier method which involves exporting your product database in csv form and updating your changes using the ‘Import’ feature.

    Getting Started

    The first thing you want to do is get familiar with the Meta Keyword section of the product edit page. Just in case you want to edit a few manually or if you want to see proof that your imported changes work, you should know where to find this information.

    Let’s start with visiting Catalog –> Manage Products using the top menu navigation in the admin section of your Magento store. You will see something like this:

    You will click on the title of the product you wish to edit and will find yourself presented with many options with regard to how to edit your product. Look at the menu on the left and find the title “Meta Information” (see below)

    When you click on “Meta Information” you are taken to a page with 3 text fields; Meta Title, Meta Keywords and Meta Description. While you can certainly add those values anytime to any product, the goal is to learn how to update multiple products at once without having to navigate through each product. You will also want to at least review these values for one product when you complete your import just to ensure the data transferred properly. Now, let’s get ready for the next step:

    Exporting Your Product Database Into A CSV File

    Look at the top navigation menu and click on “System –> Import/Export–>Export” and you will see this:

    Selecct “Products” in the “Entity Type” field and leave “CSV” as the value for “Export File Format” field.

    When you do this, you will see a large list of items below you each located next to a checkbox. This is a list of all possible database fields that you can export. Since you do not want to be inundated with redundant fields, what you will do is select *all* fields *except* those titled:

    Meta Keywords
    Meta Title
    Meta Description
    Name

    Reference the image below to see what I mean.

    *Every* field is checked *except* for those 4 fields and we do this because by checking the checkbox for each field, we are telling Magento to “Skip” these fields. For the sake of this tutorial, we do not need those fields to appear in the CSV and will only make things more complicated.

    While Magento will still export some other fields, it is due to the fact that they are required when you re-import them. Do not worry about those as, once you open up your CSV file, you just have to concern yourself with the Meta Description, Meta Keywords and Meta Title and Name fields.

    When you are done selecting all of the fields to skip, except for the 3 Meta fields and product name, you want to export the file. Scroll down and press the orange “Continue” bottom on the bottom right of the page and your file will appear.

    Once you open it, simply look for the Meta Description, Meta Keywords, Meta Title and Name fields. For me, using Open Office, it’s fields H, I and J. The ‘Name’ field would be field K, directly after the last meta field. The first field will be the SKU. This way you have 2 ways to reference which product you are editing for your Meta field updates. So make a copy of this file before you make any changes and then feel free to edit it to your liking. When you are done adding this meta information for each product you will need to complete one more important step:

    Importing Your Updated Product Database

    Once you are ready to upload your file, you want to navigate to “System –> Import/Export –> Import”

    You will see the following:

    Please note, in this screenshot, I have taken the liberty to change the default value for the “Import Behavior” field. The original value is “Append Complex Data” which means to add to any value you may have had for the meta fields for any product. We do not want to add to anything, we simply want to start fresh (just in case you had prior meta info) so we will choose “Replace Existing Complex Data” and import the file.

    Make sure the “Entity Type” is set to “Products” as you are importing products. The other option would be ‘Customers’ which does not apply to this tutorial.

    When you make your selections and import the file, assuming you did not remove any field names from your CSV file, you should see the following message after initial import when you press the orange “Check Data” button on the top right of the import page:

    This indicates that your file was received and it is giving you an update on the content quality of the file. If, for some reason, you were to add a bad field such as ” in your csv file, or if you were to accidentally delete a key field name that came with your original export, it would tell you that there were import errors. Since I am going to assume this is not the case, you should see the same type of message – the only difference being you will have more than ’2′ rows imported.

    Click on the ‘import’ button that will appear upon successful upload and you will receive the following confirmation when the actual import is complete:

    Confirming Your Results

    At this point, simply go back to “Catalog–>Manage Products” using your menu navigation at the top of the page and you will be able to choose any product you wish to edit. Click on a product title, then click on the “Meta Information” tab on the left and you should see your imported/updated Meta field values for Meta Title, Meta Description and Meta Keywords (assuming you updated all 3 of those fields, you do not have to but I strongly recommend that you do this).

    Summary

    That is all it takes to update your Meta Keyword information and this exercise shows you how to update *any* part of your products, not just the meta information. So long as you follow the proper steps in exporting your file (always remember to select the fields you do not want exported, while un-checking the checkbox for any field you do want in your exported CSV file) and importing your file and you will have full control over updating product information in a fraction of the time it would normally take you when using the admin product manager. Good luck and always feel free to offer feedback on what other Magento Tricks you would like to learn when it comes to managing your store.

    • Bluebaldur.com

      What about if I just set “Generate Meta Tags” to YES