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NoFantasy
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Joined: Nov 01, 2006
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 10:39 am Reply with quote

Why did i make this mod in the first place?

Well, to put it simple, i'm tired of users not able to find my site due to the fact that my site generate huge amounts of duplicate pages and therefore getting a penalty for it. Now, what actually happens is this:
Lets say you have a forum with 1000 posts made in 100 topics, and each topic has 10 posts. This would generate about..let's seee...100 topic pages, right? Ok, so if you run a mod_rewrite module like TegoNuke or NextGenTap, your links to the topics looks http://www.domain.com/ftopict-100.html ...and about 100 of them. In addition each post has a link looking like http://www.domain.com/ftopicp-1000.html#1000 ...yeah, that would generate about 1000 links, one for each post.

See what happens? Search engines pick up all these links, 1100 in total (concentrating on the posts and topic links here..) (For the record, when a page is being indexed and cached in a search engine, they seem to strip out the # in links). As far as the search engine concern, you now have 11 different links leading to the exact same page. What will a search engine do next? Punish it for being duplicates because the content of those 11 links are the same and lower it's page rank. Result? The users you want to find your page trough search engines won't find it...they don't have time to browse 10 pages in google (or any other major search engine for that matter) for your page to show up in the results.

We want to get rid of as much duplicate pages as possible, here's a starter.

In ../modules/Forums/index.php
Find the SQL statement, looking like
Code:
default:
                        $sql = "SELECT f.*, p.post_time, p.post_username, u.username, u.user_id

Change to
Code:
default:
                        $sql = "SELECT f.*, p.post_time, p.post_username, u.username, u.user_id, p.topic_id

Find
Code:
$last_post .= '<a href="' . append_sid("viewtopic.$phpEx?"  . POST_POST_URL . '=' . $forum_data[$j]['forum_last_post_id']) . '#' . $forum_data[$j]['forum_last_post_id'] . '"><img src="' . $images['icon_latest_reply'] . '" border="0" alt="' . $lang['View_latest_post'] . '" title="' . $lang['View_latest_post'] . '" /></a>';

Change to
Code:
$last_post .= '<a href="' . append_sid("viewtopic.$phpEx?"  . POST_TOPIC_URL . '=' . $forum_data[$j]['topic_id']) . '#' . $forum_data[$j]['forum_last_post_id'] . '"><img src="' . $images['icon_latest_reply'] . '" border="0" alt="' . $lang['View_latest_post'] . '" title="' . $lang['View_latest_post'] . '" /></a>';

In ../modules/Forums/viewforum.php
Find
Code:
$last_post_url = '<a href="' . append_sid("viewtopic.$phpEx?"  . POST_POST_URL . '=' . $topic_rowset[$i]['topic_last_post_id']) . '#' . $topic_rowset[$i]['topic_last_post_id'] . '"><img src="' . $images['icon_latest_reply'] . '" alt="' . $lang['View_latest_post'] . '" title="' . $lang['View_latest_post'] . '" border="0" /></a>';

Change to
Code:
$last_post_url = '<a href="' . append_sid("viewtopic.$phpEx?"  . POST_TOPIC_URL . '=' . $topic_rowset[$i]['topic_id']) . '#' . $topic_rowset[$i]['topic_last_post_id'] . '"><img src="' . $images['icon_latest_reply'] . '" alt="' . $lang['View_latest_post'] . '" title="' . $lang['View_latest_post'] . '" border="0" /></a>';

In ../modules/Forums/viewtopic.php
Find
Code:
$mini_post_url = append_sid("viewtopic.$phpEx?" . POST_POST_URL . '=' . $postrow[$i]['post_id']) . '#' . $postrow[$i]['post_id'];

Change to
Code:
$mini_post_url = append_sid("viewtopic.$phpEx?" . POST_TOPIC_URL . '=' . $postrow[$i]['topic_id']) . '#' . $postrow[$i]['post_id'];


All links to either a topic or post should now look like http://www.domain.com/ftopict-100.html#1000
The users already using the forum won't notice the change, we don't want to mess up the way forums work, right?

Now, i'm no guru into SEO, nor do i have any significant skills making mods to phpBB. But, i do read alot, and this seems to be pretty accurate. I would be very happy for ANY input having this mod verified by others and also additional mods regarding the matter of duplicate links/pages. I might also mention that i haven't been able to find a proper solution for redirecting inbound post-links to their proper topic-page...working on it though.

Expect issues with this mod, i have not verified it to work under any condition...consider it to be a work-in-progress (as SEO always is).

Montego, if you feel like using this in any dev of yours, or expand it, feel free to do so...hell, after all it's x-mas, lol
 
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Guardian
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Joined: Jul 18, 2005
Posts: 397

PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 4:30 pm Reply with quote

You have raised an interesting item for discussion and your observations are accurate, well done!

First off let me say I am no SEO expert either, I don't think there is such a person as it evolves daily but I have certainly 'more than dabbled' with some suprising results.

In an ideal world (which it never is of course) this is what we want from a link;
1 It should be short
2 It should be memorable
3 It should contain at least one word that is 'relevant' to your site
4 It should be unique from any other link on your site
5 It should be compliant

To address 1 and 2 we can use basic re-writing rules and the reason we keep them 'basic' is so they are consistent and more importantly that they are re-written accurately. The more individual or unique a url is, the more additional re-writing rules you have to use which in turn means you have more load on your server.

To address 3 and 4 there are third party modules like 'dynamic titles' (or whatever it was called). What this tried to do, as you have also done looking at your code above is to inject the topic title into the URL. This serves some extremely useful purposes;
1 It helps to make the link more individual
2 it can help with ranking if you choose subject title wisely as you can increase your 'weight' for specific keywords.

There is of course a downside - you have to keep on top of every single post made in your forum as you might end up with indexed links with words in them that you might not want and inevitably you'll end up with some topic subjects that are meaningless except in the context of that specific forum post.

So once again it is swings and roundabouts. There will always be a trade off but fresh regularly updated content can go a long way...
 
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NoFantasy
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Joined: Nov 01, 2006
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 5:41 pm Reply with quote

I think your listings of "basics" is quite good, and i agree on them. I assume the biggest problem now is how to actually make it work as intended. Is it possible to make a full "rewritten link package" covering all Nuke, do we have to split BBtoNuke from the rest and so on. If we want to, we can even make the topic title BE the link...if we pay attention to the topic title and edit it where needed.

http://www.phpbb-seo.com/ has come a long way, his mods listed for download is not for BBtoNuke, but the guy who runs the site might help us out if we actually want to go further down this road.

Having said that, i'm not a SEO freak and will never be, so i will watch out for any things that may clutter up a site, navigation, functions etc. After all, we run our sites for humans, not only machines, lol
 
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montego
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Joined: Feb 12, 2005
Posts: 1399

PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 8:07 am Reply with quote

You know what guys? I was starting to write back a really insightful response until I started checking in again with my Google placement. How can someone have a page rank of 5 and have a search for "montego scripts php" keywords and look where I am at? No-where to be found except through backlinks from other sites that have nothing to do with these keywords. It is even worse with "html newsletter php nuke".

I give up on Google! I am in the top 5 in yahoo and MSN for all the common keywords that I use to test out the various things that I do. Been that way from almost the beginning. Google can just go to hell for all I care... I am even using a google XML sitemap which validates perfectly!

I will have to look into replacing my Google Search with something else. Sad I have no idea what I did long back to piss them off, but I'm done messing with them !@#$%^&&

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montego
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Posts: 1399

PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 8:35 am Reply with quote

How about this for relevance?

http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com/2006/12/deftly-dealing-with-duplicate-content.html

Wink

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NoFantasy
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 8:54 am Reply with quote

lol, i guess that link says it all ...we suck making google happy Laughing

There is little doubt in my mind, there is a need to fix it...or, should i say, continue what's started.

I will, in a month or so probably have a sub.domain.com test site for this purpose where i'm testing out some of www.phpbb-seo.com 's ideas and already made code. If you want to get in touch with him (dzc), i belive he would be very happy about it as he has made stuff to work with BBtoNuke already.
 
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montego
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 9:37 am Reply with quote

I appreciate the comments. I really do. But, again, Raven's site does not have any issues with the GoogleTap and Google. So, what is probably most important with regards to SEO, is:

Content, content, content.

Make your site has relevant and fresh content, and SEO will take care of itself. These words ring back in my ears from 64bitguy from long back.

_________________
“To err is human, but when the eraser wears out ahead of the pencil, you’re overdoing it.”
-- Josh Jenkins 
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NoFantasy
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Posts: 10

PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 9:58 am Reply with quote

...of course, without content it would have been kinda useless to even start thinking about SEO. On the other hand, if content was the only factor to good rankings in SE's, SEO would not be an issue.

Properly made links, dealing with duplicate pages is only a part of the whole package. There are shitload of factors, and each and one of them will affect any site.
The content itself, page title, markup language, valid html/xhtml, how you use html tags, meta tags, placement of content...the list goes on and on and...
 
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montego
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 20, 2006 10:34 am Reply with quote

Quote:
the list goes on and on and...


Isn't that so true! Definitely some things to mull over...

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