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Dynamic Forum Titles
 
 
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THoTH
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Joined: Jan 01, 2006
Posts: 39

PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2008 1:52 pm    Post subject: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Didn't know whether to post this at Slaytanic or here, but I'll post it here anyway. In the dynamic title mod, the file looks like this for the forums.

if($mod_title=="Forums"){
global $p,$t,$forum,$f;
$newpagetitle = "$item_delim $mod_title";
if($p) {
$sql = "SELECT post_subject, post_id FROM ".$prefix."_bbposts_text WHERE post_id='$p'";
$result = $db->sql_query($sql);
$row = $db->sql_fetchrow($result);
$title = $row[post_subject];
$post = $row[post_id];
$newpagetitle = "$item_delim $mod_title $item_delim Post $post $item_delim $title";
}

This is fine as long as the post that is referenced is the first post in a topic/thread. The reason being that the post_subject in the first post is always the same as the topic title, iorf however you click on a post made after that, the post_subject is usually blank, as users tend not to enter those.

The result being that $newpagetitle ends up simply as sitename - postnumber --

As opposed to sitename - topictitle - postnumber which would be a much more meaningful title for that page.

It sounds confusing I know, but here's two examples, look at the title bar on this page.
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Compare it to the title on this page, say from last post link
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Gives only the post number in the title bar. The reason for that is that the post_subject line is blank. Is there any way that the topic title can be found from a post id, or can anyone think of a good way to get the topic title displayed alongside the post number?
  
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Guardian
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Joined: Dec 25, 2005
Posts: 364
Location: Vsetin, Czech Republic

PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2008 2:53 pm    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Depends which Dynamic title mod your using. Us folks that use RavenNuke have that problem already fixed Smile
  
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THoTH
PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2008 3:50 pm    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Laughing Alright for some, it's the Slaytanic dynamic titles, well then, if Raven has it sorted how did he do it.. I'm all ears as spock used to say Smile
  
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kguske
Site Admin
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Joined: May 12, 2005
Posts: 875

PostPosted: Sat Mar 29, 2008 7:59 am    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Hi, THoTH, you can look at Montego's dynamic titles mod or at the source (same thing) in RN.
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montego
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Joined: Dec 26, 2005
Posts: 254

PostPosted: Sat Mar 29, 2008 8:01 am    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

THoTH,
I actually am the one keeping up with TegoNuke(tm) Dynamic Titles, which is what is in RavenNuke. Yes, this is all sorted out and the reasons for the issue are these "Quick Reply" type forms. They are not valuing the subject property. Just get it from my site if you want.

Word of warning though, I have taken more of a SEO bent in my design than the old DT methodology. You may or may not like the titles, but it really depends upon what you are after... My concerns are SEO and CTRs from SERPs. If you want pretty titles for your browser bookmarks, this isn't for you. Wink
  
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THoTH
PostPosted: Sat Mar 29, 2008 10:14 am    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Thanks for the reply, no I am after functionality and the same as yourself in terms of priority, I will grab the Tegonuke Dynamic titles, they do sound ideal. Thank you Smile
  
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THoTH
PostPosted: Sat Mar 29, 2008 12:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

This is so spooky, I had a go at doing the same thing as is done in that code ie use the text from the last message, if there were no subject line. I couldn't work out how to strip the BBcode though, and I see you've sorted that Smile

I tried it, and I think I can modify it to suit my site. I prefer the format

sitename - module name - page info

sitename - forums - forumthread/topic - forumtext (or post) but I don't know if I can do that, the html standards people suggest no more than 65 characters for the title.

You've certainly cracked the part I was wanting the answer for, ie to extract the thread title if the subject wasn't entered. I'll play about with this.
  
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montego
PostPosted: Sat Mar 29, 2008 12:14 pm    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Couple comments:

The format you are suggesting is NOT then for SEO purposes as you originally suggested was your desire. There is another thread here where I discuss how SE's view the titles.

From what I have been able to gather is that some SE's will chop the page titles to 65 or slightly larger, but having longer ones will not hurt you, and some SE's will take more data, so why not give it to them?

Good luck.
  
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THoTH
PostPosted: Sat Mar 29, 2008 12:50 pm    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Thanks, could you point me at where you are saying how SE's use the titles? My way isn't 'cosmetic' it shows a breadcrumb trail showing the site hierarchy, I was taught this was the best way for the SE's, but I'm interested to see your views Smile

I agree about the 65 characters, when I was messing yesterday with extracting post text, 65 characters isn't nearly enough really.

Many thanks.
  
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montego
PostPosted: Sat Mar 29, 2008 2:47 pm    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

From Aaron Wall's SEO Book, within his section titled "Page Title Tag Done Wrong", this was his third example:

3. Site > category > sub-category > item

Within *nuke, that is pretty much what you have described above.

I am not saying that Dynamic Titles as I have it is 100% right. I have contemplated over the years writing something more precise and better able to be controlled. But, since kguske was hinting at doing dynamic titles within nukeSEO, I have not gone through that innovation cycle.

I really do believe that SEO for *nuke needs to take the holistic approach, from shortened links (but not the approach I've taken unfortunately as I took the "legacy" GoogleTap approach and we could do better), to page titles, to META keywords and descriptions, one really cannot effectively accomplish good SEO without optimizing all of these.

Unfortunately, that is a tall order with a dynamic CMS type system such as *nuke.

An example of an excellent system that has taken SEO into consideration in a big way is the latest series of b2evolution, but it too, is quite specific (right now) in terms of being a blogging tool. However, it has taken this holistic approach and I think has some good ideas which could be used in nukeSEO. Wink
  
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THoTH
PostPosted: Mon Mar 31, 2008 6:54 am    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Thanks for your input Montego, opinion does vary as to how best to implement the title tag format. My site does pretty well in the serps especially the forums. I also notice big sites like the BBC uses sitename - area etc, so maybe I will stick to this, having said that, I did learn that sitename should come last, and that a keyword or two in the title is good for seo too.

Not an easy one to decide that is for sure, and yes the holistic approach is very much needed for SEO. I may still implement your forum code for the titles, just can't decide at the moment.

Thanks again
  
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montego
PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 6:03 am    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Just remember too, that very large, well known, well "connected" web sites may not "suffer" from having unoptimized page titles... Consider WikiPedia for example. Google has placed them at the top of almost ever search results. That is NOT because WikiPedia places top in terms of ranking on every possible search keywords... Wink
  
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THoTH
PostPosted: Sun Apr 20, 2008 2:45 pm    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Sorry to take so long to get back to you Montego, well I think we'll agree to disagree here. From all that I've read it is important to get keywords in the title area, and Google etc make a big deal about designing for users rather than search engines, so I'm sticking with the format I have.

I did manage to extract all the info I needed from the forum posts though, but it meant correlating the post with its topic, and from there the title etc, so my format now is post title>post number> forum category and site name. Title and category will contain keywords that I've optimised on, so hopefully all should be good. I like the idea of extracting post text, but in a lot of cases it just says things like "good point" or "lol yeah thats funny" etc.
  
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montego
PostPosted: Mon Apr 21, 2008 7:01 am    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

Yeah, the forums have always been a buggaboo for me... (technical terms - lol) Not sure what relevance "Post number" has to a human or SE, but, ok. The fact that you are taking the time to optimize your forum thread titles is the real "key" here. Most folks, including me, do not have the time to do this. So, what do we normally get as forum thread titles? "Help me please..."... real "good" for SEO... My latest take on the "lazyman's" forum DT is to really take the text from the first post as it would have - hopefully - the most relevant content regarding the "problem" as well as probably even has the keywords that will used throughout the "page".

But, who are we kidding? phpBB is not conducive to SEO anyways. Look at how many links produce similar content? Its a mess. I sure hope phpBB3 has solved this like some of the better blogging tools have (like b2evolution).

Good luck in your quest for SEO!
  
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THoTH
PostPosted: Sat Apr 26, 2008 9:26 am    Post subject: Re: Dynamic Forum Titles Reply with quote

See what you mean, the relevance of the post number is to distinguish it from other posts in the same topic which would just end up with the same title tag entry. A distinguishing item if you like, and one that gives the user a reference for what they're reading, and the search engines something unique to identify it.

Your idea about extracting text from the first post is an interesting one, that definitely would give better info than the most recent one. I'm lucky that most of my forum titles are relevant to the area and will usually contain keywords etc given that the forum categories are the keywords.

I've only used PHPbb3 briefly, but first impressions were good. They have their own seo site too.
  
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