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Optimising GIDForums for Search Engines

by: admin - Jun 12, 2007

The last time I spent any precious time optimising GIDForums for the search engines was 2003, just after I switched the forum script from phpBB to vbulletin.

Now some 4 years later, it is obvious that some things just don't work anymore, and it's time for some drastic changes, analysing and tweaking the script all over again.

Over the last few days I have been busy adding a couple of things to the site.

Keywords meta tag

I inserted keyword meta tags for all the important pages. I know that the keyword meta tag means absolutely nothing to Google, but Google is not the only search engine out there!

Adding the key word meta tag was not hard, writing an algorithm to automatically figure out the keywords for each discussion thread was! :)

Anyway, it's done and it seems to be working pretty well. I might even use the data for other things that are totally unrelated to search engines, like maybe an in-house contextual advertising system. The keywords will come in handy for that kind of thing for sure.

Right now, the whole process is still not running on auto-pilot just yet, and I must manually "approve" the keywords the program suggests for each new thread being created, but that is intentional, so I can build a database of "ignored words", for the program to ignore in the future when it does it's thing independently.

GIDForums Archives

Before today, GIDForums never offered a forum archive, not even the one that comes ready-made as part of the vbulletin script. I just didn't like vbulletin's "archive" all that much, and I still don't.

I have always wanted to write my own version of an archive for GIDForums, so now I didn't need to convince myself to finally get it done. The GIDForums Archive works just like a blog archive, listing each thread chronologically, as it happens.

That's all the Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) work that I can stand to do for the web site, this year. If things improve, I'll be happy; if not, I'll have to look at everything again. We'll see... For my sake, I hope these changes are enough. I hate wasting my time reading about, or modifying my web sites for, the search engines already!

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