SEO configuration

SEO is short for Search Engine Optimisation. XS was developed with optimal support for search engines in mind. Besides technical, there are many other factors that determine how well your website is indexed by the major search engines. The following is important as to not degrade search engine performance:

  • XS websites detect bots/spiders and allow bots to follow links without cookies,
  • XS does not use frames or other older web techniques that may interfere with SEO,
  • URL’s have readable/indexable text, with minimal parameters and no session information,
  • pages include important meta tags and a canonical URL,
  • website images and links have titles with relevant data attached (alt-text / image titles),
  • thumbnails and links have hrefs (urls) that search engines can follow,
  • URL’s are static and followable,
  • default pages use well formed HTML and no inline css or script,
  • support for OGP is built-in and automatic,
  • we embed meta tags with both fixed and relevant variable data (more information below).
  • with the optional SEO+ module, XML sitemaps (with indexable data for every file in your database) are automatically generated and updated daily, weekly or monthly. You can submit the main sitemap file to search engines of your choice.

Creating your fixed metatags

Go to Site configuration and click SEO settings in the bar on the left. The form allows you to enter all the tags. It’s recommended to be brief and to use relevant text and keywords only. Your pages will include the tags as shown in the below example. Note that you can check this by choosing “view source” on any of your pages.

Note that your page has meta tags as well as OG meta properties. The latter are for e.g. Facebook sharing.

About the Title metatag

You can enter a text that will be used both in the browser’s address bar and that will be inserted into title metatag. The actual title consists of a fixed part (the string that you enter via SEO settings) and a variable part. The variable part depends on the page and its settings. You can for instance configure this for the preview pages.

For example, you website is called “MyStockSite”. You have entered “MyStockSite photography” in the Title field (SEO settings). You have selected the fields Headline and Credit to be used for the title on preview pages and a dash to separate the values. A photo has the headline “Color pencils” and the credit is “James Someone”. Its preview page will have a browser title and title metatag containing “MyStockSite photography – Color pencils – James Someone”.

About the Description metatag

Below is some important information taken from seomoz.org, we recommended that you visit their website.

Description tags, while not important to search engine rankings, are extremely important in gaining user click-through from search engine result pages (SERPs). These short paragraphs are webmasters opportunity to advertise content to searchers and let them know exactly what the given page has with regard to what they’re looking for.
Description tags should employ the keywords intelligently, but also create a compelling description that a searcher will want to click. Direct relevance to the page and uniqueness between each page’s meta description is key.
Description tags can be any length but search engines generally truncate snippets longer than 160 characters, For this reason it is best to keep meta descriptions between 150-160 characters.
Avoid duplicate meta description tags.
Any time quotes are used in a meta description, Google cuts off the description. To prevent meta descriptions from being cut off, it’s best to remove all non-alpha/numeric characters from meta descriptions.

About the Keywords metatag

The keywords meta tag is now less important than it was. Certain search engines seem to ignore this tag completely, but others do still use it (e.g. Yahoo). The same rules as described for the Description tag (above) apply to the Keywords tag. We think that you should not have more than about 15 to 20 keywords in the static part of your Keywords tag. Note that variable keywords are automatically added depending on the page.

Variable metatags

In addition to your fixed meta tags, Infradox XS will automatically update your page tags with information from the database that is relevant to specific pages. For instance, a search results page that shows found files for the query “studio portrait”, will have the words studio and portrait added to the embedded keywords. The title metatag will also be automatically updated, in the above example the tag’s value may be changed to something like this:

The Preview page metatags are also automatically updated with data from the file that is displayed. For example:

In the above example, the first words for the keywords tag are the fixed tags that you have configured, the rest is automatically taken from the file’s keywords. The description tag displays your fixed description first, followed by the page’s index-able URL part and then (part of) the file’s caption data.

Title tags and Alt tags for thumbnail images and preview images

Thumbnails are inside HREF HTML tags. For example:

As you can see, each thumbnail has a link / HREF that search engine spiders can follow. In the above example:

The img element has a HTML alt tag that is relevant to many search engines. You can configure the field or fields that you want to use for the alt tag via Site Configuration, General settings, section Thumbnail pages layout. The setting is called data for alt-text. You can use up to three fields for this function. In the above example both the img alt and title tags have the photo caption and the photographer credit:
Dutch championships ladies bodybuilding competition 1st place winner. James Olderberg.

Important: Google advises against stuffing your alt-tags with keywords. More info here: Google support: Image publishing guidelines.

You can also configure the output of the title tag. The title tag is relevant to some search engines. The title tag displays when you hover over an image. Its appearance is controlled by your browser.

Finally, you can configure both the alt- and the title-tags for your preview images separately, via Site configuration, General settings, section Preview pages.

URL’s for preview pages

The URL’s that you can see in your browser’s address bar are not the same as the canonical URL’s that are embbeded in the source of your pages. When using the website, there are many ways to get to a preview page, e.g. by clicking on a thumbnail in your cart panel, in the search results, in a lightbox and so on. Different URL’s are used to let the website know the context and how to get back to the previous page and so on. For search engines however, the context is irrelevant and multiple URL’s to get to the same content are regarded as duplicate links which may degrade search engine performance. This is why the canonical URL for a preview image/file is always the same, regardless the URL that you in the browser’s address bar. Furthermore, if you use “modal previews” then those are displayed as an HTML layer using script. Search engines however will always “see” the normal HTML preview pages (this is done automatically as XS detects bots/spiders/crawlers).

Below is an example of the URL you may see in your browser’s address bar when you’ve clicked on a photo in your search results (the actual URL would start with your domain name):

And here’s an example of what the canonical URL may look like, regardless of how you got to the preview page (note that there are no slashes or navigation indicators):

Both the URL’s that the website uses and the canonical URL’s are configurable. I.e. these URL’s are made up of a number of fixed and variable parts. Usually either the title or the caption is used for the variable part. For the fixed parts in the above examples – the word “stock” is uses as a prefix and “mycompanyname” is used as a fixed suffix. Below is the format/structure used for this:

Format: /{prefix}-photo-{text}-{suffix}-image{fileid}.html
Example: /stock-photo-african-lion-cub-wildlife-image0008281.html

You can configure the settings via Site configuration, SEO, Metatags, Social > Preview page canonical URL

URL’s for your galleries

The URL’s for your galleries use the names that you have set up in the gallery manager.
A URL to a gallery in the level portfolios and the group photographers, may look something like this (the actual URL would start with your domain name):

So in the above example, the portfolios part is the name of the gallery level, the photographers part is the name of the gallery group, and john-masters is the name of the gallery. It’s best to use meaningful group and gallery titles for obvious reasons. Note that URL’s must be RFC valid which is why accented characters are automatically replaced, why spaces are shown as dashes and so on.

Google Analytics

We advise that you create a Google Analytics account to keep track of how well your website is being indexed by this important search engine. Once you have done that, you can copy the Google Analytics code (provided by Google) for your website into the edit box. Note that you’ll have to include the tags. The code that you enter here will be automatically included on all your pages.
More info: Google Analytics website.

Google Tag manager

You can also paste your Google Tag manager code. This code will also be included on every page.
More info: Google Tag Manager website. The Tag manager code is inserted as you enter it immediately after the tag of your pages. If you have custom pages then click “view source” to see if the code is available on your custom pages. If not, you’ll need to add it in the code editor.

Best practices

Infradox XS websites will be automatically indexed by all major search engines. To get Google to crawl your website frequently it is recommended that you use Google Analytics as described above. Note that having links to your content on other sites is also very important in order to get search engines to index your website’s content. You can simply copy the URL (in your browser’s address bar) of almost any page for this purpose.

Please also read this link on seomoz.org for a primer on search engine optimization.

SEO+ module

With the SEO+ module, XML sitemaps are automatically generated and updated as a background process on the web server. The system will create a sitemap index file that contains information about further sitemaps on your server. I.e. there may be sitemaps for all of your galleries, for all of your unique keywords, for your contributors – but also for every single file on your website. For a detailed explanation about XML sitemaps, read the following article on support.google.com. The process of generating sitemaps can be configured in Backoffice. New sitemaps can be generated daily, weekly or monthly and you can be notified by e-mail when the process has completed.
If you want to use this module or if you have questions about it, then please create a support ticket on xpertise.zendesk.com.

2018-03-03T18:01:50+00:00 February 7th, 2017|Categories: Configuration, Information, Tutorials|Tags: , , , , , , , , |