Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

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drathbun
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by drathbun »

ascensions wrote:Ironically for an opensource software the "Me is better then We" is rampant on this site.
You might be confusing open source with open development. phpBB is open source, meaning you can do whatever you want with it. It is not open development, meaning a closed group has final say as to what code makes it into the published product.
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by pentapenguin »

ascensions wrote:Something says on Gold, alot of people will be going to alternatives.
If you find something else you are welcomed to move to it. We don't hold you captive. ;)
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by thecoalman »

ElbertF wrote:Search engines should adapt to and change with the internet, not the other way around.
Yes and they do but they aren't mind readers either, Did they mean for this page to be the main page? Does this URL go to new content or is just duplication? Was this page intended to be indexed ? Those questions can only be answered by the person creating the pages.

The developers chose a structure that works best for the software, as they should.


Agree but I have yet to see anyone flatly state how most of the changes suggested in this thread would affect either the structure of the software or the usabilty. Adding noindex in the meta tags of pages that shouldn't be indexed or better yet adding nofollow to links that shouldn't be indexed would not in any way affect the structure or usability. You already have the abilty to determine what a bot should not index so the code is already in place to add them.
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by utomo88 »

IMHO
Yes, I agree that phpBB need to take care this situations, out of the box.
This is a very important things.
Too important to be given to a MOD.
This must be coming directly from the phpBB it self, without any modifications

Thanks

Frank Rizzo wrote:As I said in this post:

http://www.phpbb.com/community/viewtopi ... 121&hilit=

phpBB is not great when it comes to being search engine friendly.

That was for 2x but I'm really disappointed to see 3x doing similar things.

Don't believe me? Take a look at Google's cache of this messageboard:

http://www.google.co.uk/search?q=site:p ... rt=90&sa=N

Those titles and descriptions are really helpful to potential visitors of the site. NOT :|
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by Raimon »

utomo88 wrote:IMHO
Yes, I agree that phpBB need to take care this situations, out of the box.
This is a very important things.
Too important to be given to a MOD.
This must be coming directly from the phpBB it self, without any modifications

Thanks
phpBB handles SEO fine, more SEO friendly it is when you compare it with phpBB 2.0.x
Where you quote one its because there is no meta tag description, when you put the description into the overall_header.html it working just fine.
I still think that SEO is silly, because one of my board without SEO or something it increase from a pr from 0 to 4 wOOt without SEO :shock:
So why you think that phpBB3 is bad with SEO i don't think so, it handles it very well, you can use mods but i doubt if it give you a better position in some search engine(s).
Hm and also some other board software don't have this default ship with the board software, what is the point that you must use a MOD(that is not so hard to do right ;) ) , we called it customize your phpBB© to you personal needs.
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by ascensions »

pentapenguin wrote:
ascensions wrote:Something says on Gold, alot of people will be going to alternatives.
If you find something else you are welcomed to move to it. We don't hold you captive. ;)
Hey'ya, I'm not trying to trash the product, I'm just "Discussing" it. Personally I like PHPBB. I fell in love with it the day I first used it. I think 3.0 is genius, but I also think it was blatantly programmed from a text book IT professional point of view with emphasis on security, and initial functionality. Sitting behind a main site or page, it works just fine, but the moment you try to run an entire site off of it, or use it as a CMS it fails to measure up similar products which have addressed SEO.

Most of us are only asking for PHPBB OE to meet us blasphemous SEO'ers half way.

Why not? Seriously... You're tossing out bugs right and left, why not "Just try"? Pick some easy ones? Maybe even offer the changes as optional in the ACP and people can turn them off if they'd prefer them. What's it take for you PHP geniuses to write a simple form add on, and a few lines of code? 1, 2 minutes?

Seriously, gratitude abounds to the PHPBB and staff... you guys do a wonderful job, it's just your refusal to acknowledge that (even if it's a minority) there is a demand for SEO in PHPBB, is almost Hubristic.
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by IPB_Refugee »

phpbb 3.0 had an external security audit, maybe phpBB 3.2 will have an external SEO audit... :?

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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by pentapenguin »

ascensions wrote:Hey'ya, I'm not trying to trash the product, I'm just "Discussing" it.
That's fine. I was just making the point you don't have to use it. :) We want you to use what's best for you. If it's phpBB, that's fine. If it's something else, that's fine too.
ascensions wrote:I also think it was blatantly programmed from a text book IT professional point of view with emphasis on security, and initial functionality.
Well those are good things to strive for, no? :)
ascensions wrote: Sitting behind a main site or page, it works just fine, but the moment you try to run an entire site off of it, or use it as a CMS it fails to measure up similar products which have addressed SEO.
Not really sure what a custom CMS has to do with SEO. Actually there's a new hooks system which along with the built-in API (add_user(), etc.) which really makes phpBB3 MUCH more MODder friendly.
ascensions wrote:Most of us are only asking for PHPBB OE to meet us blasphemous SEO'ers half way.
Well you do have to look at it this way: if the developers kept adding features or tweaking it then it would never be finished. ;) They have greatly improved SEO in 3. Maybe not as much as some would like but it is a definite improvement. Don't forget about your ideas -- be sure to suggest them when the 3.2 feature tracker comes around. Maybe they will be added -- you never know. ;)
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by MewDragon »

ascensions wrote:
pentapenguin wrote:
ascensions wrote:Something says on Gold, alot of people will be going to alternatives.
If you find something else you are welcomed to move to it. We don't hold you captive. ;)
Hey'ya, I'm not trying to trash the product, I'm just "Discussing" it. Personally I like PHPBB. I fell in love with it the day I first used it. I think 3.0 is genius, but I also think it was blatantly programmed from a text book IT professional point of view with emphasis on security, and initial functionality. Sitting behind a main site or page, it works just fine, but the moment you try to run an entire site off of it, or use it as a CMS it fails to measure up similar products which have addressed SEO.

Most of us are only asking for PHPBB OE to meet us blasphemous SEO'ers half way.

Why not? Seriously... You're tossing out bugs right and left, why not "Just try"? Pick some easy ones? Maybe even offer the changes as optional in the ACP and people can turn them off if they'd prefer them. What's it take for you PHP geniuses to write a simple form add on, and a few lines of code? 1, 2 minutes?

Seriously, gratitude abounds to the PHPBB and staff... you guys do a wonderful job, it's just your refusal to acknowledge that (even if it's a minority) there is a demand for SEO in PHPBB, is almost Hubristic.

You might "love" phpbb, but saying stuff like "I think a lotta people will switch to a different software when it goes gold" is pretty antagonistic, don't you think?

In any event, 3.0's been in development for some months now, and a lot of the features were being discussed over on Area51, during that time. And up to the point when phpbb 3.0 was feature frozen. If you guys were so adamant about SEO protocols, you should've gotten up off your butts and gone and checked area51 to see what was going on and make sure that was included.

Phpbb's most useful aspect has not been the forum software itself, but the community and mods that have supported it. 3.0 is going to expand upon that by making the base forum software really good to start off with, that way when you mod your forum, it'll be awesome. Now granted, SEO is pretty important stuff to consider. But search engine indexing isn't exactly a science, there's a lotta different ways to go about doing things with it, and there's a lot of different search engines. There's not gonna be one proven way to do it. And SEO isn't without flaws. Phpbb has it's bot system, things have been revised. It IS more search engine friendly than 2.x.

I think perhaps though the best course of action was for this whole matter to have been discussed months ago and for some reasonable conclusion to have been reached for 3.0 to have been at least somewhat effective in generating some kinda quality rankings via search engines. While I do rely on invites and affiliations, word of mouth, etc. a lot more than search engines to get users' onto my forums. It would be ridiculously helpful to be able to have my forum get itself some quality ranking on google or something.
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by ascensions »

MewDragon wrote: You might "love" phpbb, but saying stuff like "I think a lotta people will switch to a different software when it goes gold" is pretty antagonistic, don't you think?
Not at all. I'm just saying. I made an assumption when I first installed 3.0 back around RC2 that the bots were taking care of. That "buggy"ness of 2.0 was taken care of, because 3.0 could identify and serve different content to bots. In reality, other than restricting a few links, the bots feature is truly not being used.

Now yes it was my fault for assuming, but alot of people are going to go to this software and experience the same 3-4 month learning curve. Much of which could be very easily dealt with by including some small changes in the general release. Oddly enough it doesn't have to be that way, but it is that way because the changes aren't taking place... and yes it's going to turn many away.
MewDragon wrote: In any event, 3.0's been in development for some months now, and a lot of the features were being discussed over on Area51, during that time. And up to the point when phpbb 3.0 was feature frozen. If you guys were so adamant about SEO protocols, you should've gotten up off your butts and gone and checked area51 to see what was going on and make sure that was included.
Should of, could of, would of... you seem offended. I can't build a time machine, but code changes can be made. Sorry.
MewDragon wrote:
Phpbb's most useful aspect has not been the forum software itself, but the community and mods that have supported it. 3.0 is going to expand upon that by making the base forum software really good to start off with, that way when you mod your forum, it'll be awesome. Now granted, SEO is pretty important stuff to consider.
Agreed, and good point. PHPBB is the muscle car of forums. It spits gasoline, and makes alot of noise, but you're always needing to tune it up, or else it won't start. It "is" the tinkerer of all forums. That however doesn't make the point moot that you should purposely build it with 14 doors and 2 wheels.
MewDragon wrote: But search engine indexing isn't exactly a science, there's a lotta different ways to go about doing things with it, and there's a lot of different search engines.
Actually it is. It's math. It's algorithms, and it makes perfect sense to quite a few people. Bots don't have feelings and emotions, they're not going to say "Ooooh it's a PHPBB board, and I like them, they get to have duplicate content on 12 different links."
MewDragon wrote:
There's not gonna be one proven way to do it. And SEO isn't without flaws. Phpbb has it's bot system, things have been revised. It IS more search engine friendly than 2.x.
That's debatable. I think it "has" the ability too, but when all things weigh out, it's worse.
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by Brinson »

I don't have the time to read through this entire thread...

..but did anyone notice the link he posted was the 10th page of google?

Go to the first things indexed and its fine.
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by Highway of Life »

ascensions wrote:Not at all. I'm just saying. I made an assumption when I first installed 3.0 back around RC2 that the bots were taking care of. That "buggy"ness of 2.0 was taken care of, because 3.0 could identify and serve different content to bots. In reality, other than restricting a few links, the bots feature is truly not being used.
Its being used a lot more than you think or know.
ascensions wrote:Now yes it was my fault for assuming, but alot of people are going to go to this software and experience the same 3-4 month learning curve. Much of which could be very easily dealt with by including some small changes in the general release. Oddly enough it doesn't have to be that way, but it is that way because the changes aren't taking place... and yes it's going to turn many away.
3-4 month learning curve? where did you come up with that estimation?
I’ve seen some very technically challenged computer users pick up phpBB3 Administration inside of a few weeks. I would like to know what substantiates your claim that it will be so difficult for people.
ascensions wrote:
MewDragon wrote:But search engine indexing isn't exactly a science, there's a lotta different ways to go about doing things with it, and there's a lot of different search engines.
Actually it is. It's math. It's algorithms, and it makes perfect sense to quite a few people. Bots don't have feelings and emotions, they're not going to say "Ooooh it's a PHPBB board, and I like them, they get to have duplicate content on 12 different links."
Then why do SEO experts rarely agree?
If its a perfect science of math and algorithms, why do so few experts agree, why is there no one how-to, but instead a wide range of non-consistant ideas, why are there so many conflicting suggestions and opinions?
SEO is the one industry where I’ve seen the least amount of consensus with the experts. -- Even here now, there is a lot that has been posted here by people who think they know, but it has not all been correct, and it’s all been debated.
ascensions wrote:
MewDragon wrote:There's not gonna be one proven way to do it. And SEO isn't without flaws. Phpbb has it's bot system, things have been revised. It IS more search engine friendly than 2.x.
That's debatable. I think it "has" the ability too, but when all things weigh out, it's worse.
Oh? what's worse about it?

Overall, you are forgetting the most important aspect of phpBB 2 and 3, and that is the phpBB bulletin board software is built for users and people, not Search Engines and robots, but you seem to be overfocused on the performance of the system with the bots. Sure, I think we can all agree there is some room for improvements, and surprisingly, I’ve only seen a few good suggestions, but too much importance is being placed on Search Engine performance of the system. Certainly this whole issue is being taken way too far as to say that phpBB is somehow not a good system or that it’s seriously lacking because it doesn't perform for Search Engine Robots the way you think it should.
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by drathbun »

The reason SEO "experts" can't agree is because every time they think they have something, google (et al) changes the rules. ;-) The point being, google doesn't want people to know its algorithms and processes because as soon as they do then everybody starts flooding that feature. Google reads meta keywords; everyone puts keywords of any kind on their page, even those not related to their content. Google rewards back links, and link farms started up. Google does this, people do that, it's not called the "google dance" for nothing. :)

I don't disagree that there are a wealth of "same link" opportunities within phpBB. But to say that fixing phpBB (2 or 3 for that matter) for SEO is a simple matter is... in my opinion... a bit of an overstatement. If it were that easy to pop your results to the first page of google's search results then, well, I am thinking of what happened in "Bruce Almighty" when Jim Carrey's character granted everyone's prayers and millions of people all won the lottery on the same day.

Someone is going to be first, someone else is not. If it really was algorithms and math, then everyone would be doing the same math, and all of our sites would be exactly the same.
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by HB »

Highway of Life wrote:Overall, you are forgetting the most important aspect of phpBB 2 and 3, and that is the phpBB bulletin board software is built for users and people, not Search Engines and robots, but you seem to be overfocused on the performance of the system with the bots. Sure, I think we can all agree there is some room for improvements, and surprisingly, I’ve only seen a few good suggestions, but too much importance is being placed on Search Engine performance of the system.
I did investigate a bit and found that the MAJORITY of the duplicate links from the base V3 have been eliminated, thank you! Zero would be even better, but hey, I'm applauding progress.
drathbun wrote:The reason SEO "experts" can't agree is because every time they think they have something, google (et al) changes the rules. ;-)
I think many responding to this thread are missing a larger point: Frequently the "right" answer for search engines is also the "right" answer for people. Google may have murky obscure algorithmic means of figuring out what page should rank where, but my guiding principle is simple: If it helps people, it's good for search engines too. So I expect that an easily navigable site for people will be easily navigable for search engines. Well structured pages (e.g., meaningful headings, good related links, not a lot of "noise") are appreciated by people and I assume rewarded by search engine algorithms too.

So that brings us to phpBB. Imagine that somebody sends you a short message:

Code: Select all

Have you read this thread? I think you'll find it interesting: http://www.phpbb.com/community/viewtopic.php?f=64&t=552307
Or they send you this:

Code: Select all

Have you read this thread? I think you'll find it interesting: 
http://www.phpbb.com/community/out-of-the box-phpBB3-is-awful-for-SEO-t552307.html
Forget for a moment whether search engines are happier with the first or second. Which is more user friendly?
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Re: Out of the box phpBB 3 is awful for SEO

Post by ElbertF »

You'd need a .htaccess script, regex to extract the topic id, and in some cases and extra query to find the forum id. It looks nice, but it won't make that much of a difference for search engines and just decreases performance (which is more important IMO).
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