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Community Building and User Generated Content Forum

    
Best forum software for SEO
part II.
bikedorkseattle




msg:4275000
 1:28 am on Mar 2, 2011 (gmt 0)

I'm sorry if there is another recent conversation, I only found this one.

[webmasterworld.com...]

The forum landscape seems to changed quite a bit in the last couple years with some of the fallout of vB. I wanted to see what people thought about the current options out there from a pure SEO perspective. I agree the best SEO practice is to run a great forum with great content, but once you have that question is how much does your software make a difference? I would think it does make a difference and it's astonishing how many don't follow google's own SEO guidelines.

In my mind these are the leading players at this moment.
-vBulletin
-IP.Board
-UBB.threads
-SMF
-XenForo
-Any others?

 

OMZen




msg:4275459
 7:30 pm on Mar 2, 2011 (gmt 0)

Either of the first two choices are robust, scalable and SEF.

rogerd




msg:4275930
 3:19 pm on Mar 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

vBulletin also has a paid addon, vBSEO, which gives you a lot of additional control over what gets spidered, URL generation, title and meta tags, redirects, etc.

At one point, Google was offering Rich Snippets by parsing the vB pages - you'd get post dates, number of replies, etc. I'm just seeing the post date and a text snippet right now.

robzilla




msg:4277252
 9:12 pm on Mar 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

Any particular reason you've left out phpBB? I'm not exactly sure how search engine friendly it is out of the box, but the community is large and offers plenty of tips and modifications that allow you to exercise more control over the things that matter to search engines.

bikedorkseattle




msg:4277261
 9:36 pm on Mar 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

@robzilla I left it out because it's not commercial and that it is frequently compromised. It is a great piece of software and I have used it on a project before.

thecoalman




msg:4279439
 8:12 am on Mar 10, 2011 (gmt 0)

...and that it is frequently compromised.


That can be said about phpBB2 but that is not the case with phpBB3. Before it's release it went though a paid security audit with no major vulnerabilities found. It's track record since it's release in late '07 is outstanding.

[secunia.com...]

As far as SEO goes out of the box it's not that great but there is lot of great modifications available.

enigma1




msg:4304127
 2:53 pm on Apr 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

-Any others?

Yes, custom SEO scripts for pretty much any platform. See "fast and furious" as a car analogy. That's what really makes the difference.

Asia_Expat




msg:4304172
 4:01 pm on Apr 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

IP.Board has come a long way with SEO but there are some issues that the software vendors just don't quite 'get'. In the current release of the software, 301 redirects for permalinks is broken. Even though myself and other customers have raised the issue with Invisionpower, they've classed it as low priority and are refusing to fix it until the next minor version release... so all my permalink redirects are currently broken, and have been for months. The rel="canonical" tags are taking care of it, but Invisionpower just don't get it.

rogerd




msg:4304210
 4:45 pm on Apr 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

Thanks for sharing that, Asia_Expat. That's too bad - these days, software developers are increasingly aware of SEO and building in basic features like that as a high priority.

philipjterry




msg:4310320
 1:21 pm on May 10, 2011 (gmt 0)

what software is a good choice if one wants to achieve the webmasterworld look and feel...?

Asia_Expat




msg:4310347
 2:30 pm on May 10, 2011 (gmt 0)

Any of them... you have to edit the skin templates and make it look and feel how you want it to. If you don't have the time or skill to achieve that, there are usually free or paid templates available.

rogerd




msg:4314050
 12:21 pm on May 18, 2011 (gmt 0)

One thing that characterizes WebmasterWorld is lean code and light pages. Achieving this with one of the big forum packages may be a little tough, as they tend to suffer from feature bloat. In the past, members have posted about lightweight forum packages. Seems like "Simple Machines" was one, and there were a few other minimalist forums. Anyone still using these?

rogerd




msg:4314051
 12:21 pm on May 18, 2011 (gmt 0)

One thing that characterizes WebmasterWorld is lean code and light pages. Achieving this with one of the big forum packages may be a little tough, as they tend to suffer from feature bloat. In the past, members have posted about lightweight forum packages. Seems like "Simple Machines" was one, and there were a few other minimalist forums. Anyone still using these?

philipjterry




msg:4317973
 3:02 pm on May 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

thank you - I am a HUGE fan of minimalism - and am toying with the idea of starting an anti complexity movement to make these types of programs more freely available ;) I think there is a huge opportunity here for any companies that want rapid market uptake. When are they going to get it that 'most' people want efficiency not complexity. Our lives are already complex.

I will give Simple machines a shot.

john5000




msg:4318822
 10:01 pm on May 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

bbPress beta 2 is out now

it's a forum plugin for Wordpress

and Wordpress is known to be very SEO friendly, so I'd imagine bbPress will be also

robzilla




msg:4318836
 11:01 pm on May 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

bbPress is not just a WordPress plugin, but standalone forum software developed by the creators of Wordpress. I like their philosophy, but I'm not sure they're living up to it with (what I've seen of) bbPress.

As for lightweight forum packages, I'd vote for phpBB. I'm not sure how lean the actual code is, but the software allows me to output lightweight pages without sacrificing functionality, using a simple but powerful templating system.

I started out with vBulletin, but just trying to get rid of all those site-wide JavaScript files gave me enough of a headache to begin looking for an alternative. Same goes for most commercial forum software (IP.Board, XenForo, etc).

FluxBB is another promising package, but as of yet it does not have a proper templating system.

Asia_Expat




msg:4319141
 10:36 pm on May 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

The thing with open source/free forum systems is security. Commercial products like IPB use external security auditors as well as their own internal checks. When flaws are found, they are quickly patched. If your website is your livelihood, this should obviously be prioritised.

thecoalman




msg:4319327
 4:32 pm on May 29, 2011 (gmt 0)

The thing with open source/free forum systems is security.


Again phpBB's track record since late '07 speaks for itself. Of the 5 issues Secunia lists only one could be considered serious. They introduced RSS feeds in 3.0.7 and it was possible for someone to read private forums. The patch was issued immediately as soon as it was found.

Asia_Expat




msg:4319433
 12:46 am on May 30, 2011 (gmt 0)

Interesting. I'm looking at adding forums to translated versions of my website, but the license of my IPB installation forbids using it across domains, and the cost of a separate license for each language is cost prohibitive... so it's interesting to read about the possibilities with free stuff.

thecoalman




msg:4319546
 1:13 pm on May 30, 2011 (gmt 0)

If it were me doing this from scratch I wouldn't use different domains. Different language packs are available and when the user registers they have the option of choosing their own language.

From there you can apply a different theme to any forum. Templates are inherited so you could for example just alter the CSS. You would have visually different forum for each language. AFAIK there is no option out the box for applying a default language to specific forums but should be an easy modification if you can't.

Th benefit of course is you have it all under one login, the user can navigate to different forums with other languages.

Asia_Expat




msg:4319631
 4:35 pm on May 30, 2011 (gmt 0)

Separate tld domains are very useful for site translations, the benefits far outweigh the extra effort. Furthermore, you don't need separate logins, as IPB (which I use) has a 'Converge' system where multiple forums can use the same core member database.

sundaridevi




msg:4333826
 8:04 pm on Jul 1, 2011 (gmt 0)

I've done some research on this and concluded that VBulletin would be the best for my needs. But now that I'm getting ready to implement it, one question comes up. How easy is it to integrate user authentication for VBulletin with the user authentication for the existing site? Has anybody tried this?

LJWeb




msg:4351908
 7:56 am on Aug 16, 2011 (gmt 0)

These 2 have done really well for us...

-vBulletin
-IP.Board

vBulletin has many seo plugins available too for little or no charge. Seems like one of the most popular and robust ones to use out of the bunch.

g1smd




msg:4352121
 5:27 pm on Aug 16, 2011 (gmt 0)

vBulletin has a load of Duplicate Content issues, mainly centred around the previous/next functionality.

sundaridevi




msg:4353738
 11:25 am on Aug 20, 2011 (gmt 0)

re:Duplicate content issues.

Can you elaborate on this? Do you mean that it gets penalized by search engines due to duplicate content? Any fixes for this?

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