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Is there a reason why product URLs with IDs and friendly URLs have to co-exist in Magento? Is there any downside to (301 permanent) redirecting URLs with IDs to friendly URLs?

Example:

URL with id: site.com/catalog/product/view/id/2609

friendly URL: site.com/some-real-friendly-product-name

I would love to know your opinions on this.

  • And if you turn on "Use SEO friendly URLs" in System Config, Magento already automatically does the redirects for you so that the rest of the web sees the friendly url-keys you assign and Magento gets to use its internal IDs that it knows how to work with. – Fiasco Labs Aug 13 '14 at 14:41
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First, There is a definite reason for these urls in magento. URLs like site.com/catalog/product/view/id/2609 are used by magento's controller-action philosophy so that it can provide correct response to the request, as URLs like site.com/some-real-friendly-product-name don't provide anything to magento to know what exactly is requested. You can read more about this approach in this article from magento knowledgebase. The reason for converting URLs with ID to friendly URLs is obvious, SEO, As search engines prefer human friendly URL structure.

And there is no downfall for providing 301 redirects as they tell search engines simply that the page requested has been permanently shifted to another URL so that search engine do not consider them as two seperate URLs for one page(duplicate content issue). So, don't worry about them at all, they are not gonna harm in any manner.

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  • Most of the time, when I've seen questions like this asked, it's because the developer is just starting out and is trying to run Magento like they run other websites and is trying to set up .htaccess redirects. Magento already handles creating SEO Friendly URLs in System Config and needs it turned on and the .htaccess file modified to enable URL rewrites per the Magento sample .htaccess. – Fiasco Labs Aug 13 '14 at 14:46

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