compassdesigns.net gets a fair glob of traffic. Alot of this is based on all the referral links that are out there. For example, one popular link is:
This was the old location of my popular tutorial on templating.
The new URL for this is:
Now, on the old 1.0 site, I had been using OpenSEF. It had got to the point (inmho) where is was a sub-par choice for SEO. But I knew I was going to be migrating to 1.5 with its sexy new SEF URL’s natively built into the core. The above new link for the template tutorial is an example of one. I wanted to take advantage of the new core SEF and set up a stable future-proof URL structure that was as optimized for SERP as possible.
I knew I was going to have a whole bunch of 404’s (page not found) as people came to the new site and the old URL was no longer correct. My plan was to keep an eye on my error log and create 301 redirections in .htaccess. This would mean that for the most important (highest trafficked) links, I would keep my "google link juice" and also not annoy the hell out of people!
This is where is has started to go wrong though….
For a few hours it seems that the core SEF was working well, but a number of problems have cropped up:
- The 404’s are not getting logged. If you go to a page that doesn’t exist, like www.compassdesigns.net/whereisthe404.html, you will get my custom 404 page. A new 1.5 feature (its in the template folder). Trouble is, the 404 doesn’t get logged on my server error log, so my plan of tracking and rebuilding links is in trouble.
- Oddness with the .html extension. My pages all have an .html extension, so we have tutorials.html. But, for some reason, you can go to the page without the extension, like this, tutorials. An undocumented feature or a bug? Difficult to tell, because of my first point.
- Duplicate content. This seem like it has*almost* been dealt with in Joomla 1.5, but not quite. If you go to a page with an article index, like this one: tutorials/17-joomla-tutorials/208-joomla-15-template-tutorial.html you will see that the first URL in the article index is not the same, it drops the "17-joomla-tutorials" which is going to cause duplicate content.
- An easy solution to this might be to install one of the 3rd paryt SEF extensions now becoming available fro 1.5. Trouble is, they don’t play with MyBlog or JoomSuite Content, two major extensions I am using.
First off, I am going to have to fix the 404 problem.