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Categories Not Shown In Search Engines?

Discussion in 'General XenForo Discussion and Feedback' started by Gary Becks, Jan 8, 2012.

  1. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    Hi, I am kind of confused about something with Xenforo that I just realized today.

    The categories on my site don't seem to show up in search engines like forums and or threads do.

    E.G. http://guerrillaboards.com/#backlinks-discussions-guerrilla-boards.1

    The title for this category in google would be Backlinks Discussions | Guerrilla Boards and the meta description would take on the one show on the site.

    However they simply do not show as with threads, or forums. Is there a reason for this and how can it be fixed?

    The Category is not private either so I am sure that's got nothing to do with the problem.
     
    erich37 likes this.
  2. Brogan

    Brogan XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    I suspect you need to set them as separate pages - it's an option in the ACP.
     
  3. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    Are there any instructions on how to do this?
     
  4. Brogan

    Brogan XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    ACP Search: categories

    Click on the result of that search.
     
  5. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    Great, thanks.
     
  6. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    Ok, so this did work as far as getting my category to show along with the title of it. The problem I am having now is that the meta description that I have set for the category is not what is shown in google serps.

    This might not be a problem for some but I'm an seo guy and this is kind of a big deal for me.

    It poses a big problem when trying to build a site structure which I can optimize based on categories.

    Does anyone know if there is a way to fix this somehow so that I can have a set description for my Categories that show in google serps?

    Thanks..
     
    Digital Doctor likes this.
  7. Digital Doctor

    Digital Doctor Well-Known Member

    Forum categories don't show up in search engines by default ?
    really ?
    Can someone outline the reasons why you might not want forum categories to show up in search engines ?
     
  8. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    It's useful for a number of different reasons. But for me it's mainly a matter of seo benefits and site structure.

    My Root Domain is being used for a specific keyword that I am trying to rank for. Hence I am trying to use a certain category for another keyword as categories hold more content than would any other node.

    The problem is that it's hard to optimize the categories properly because the descriptions are not shown in serps results properly.

    Hopefully someone from the staff has something to add to this.

    As for why you might NOT want them to be shown, I guess it's just a matter of preference??
     
  9. Brogan

    Brogan XenForo Moderator Staff Member

  10. Digital Doctor

    Digital Doctor Well-Known Member

    How might I make that decision ?

    When I search google for xenforo development help, the category of the same name doesn't show up. So Xenforo.com likely does not have their forum categories listed in search engines.

    Let's change the question ... why would I not want forum categories to show up in search engines ? Are categories too broad and they won't help anyway ?
     
  11. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    Meta Tags and Meta Descriptions are two different things. Descriptions are used in serp results, and for categories they would be used for more than just seo purposes but also for click throughs.

    It is afterall the only thing a potential visitor has to read when viewing google serps and deciding which result to click on.
     
  12. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    It's all a matter of how you want your site structured. I personally see absolutely no reason why you wouldn't want your categories to show up in serp results. My best guess is that this was either an error in the development of Xenforo or just done based on a lack of SEO know how.??

    Either way it's something that I hope gets addressed asap as it's causing me headaches and leaving me kind of helpless in terms of optimizing my site since I don't know how to hack it and do what I would like to in order to optimize my categories.
     
  13. Digital Doctor

    Digital Doctor Well-Known Member

    One option is to not use categories.
    Just make forums and subforums.
    Then everything will show up in search engines.

    I think it might be a good idea to have the categories not show up in search engines.
     
  14. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    This doesn't make any sense. A forum without categories - seriously? Does such a thing even exist?

    I just want a fix or a workaround. Surely it isn't something hard for the devs to implements. But until then I need something immediate to fix things for just this one category that I am trying to rank.
     
  15. digitalpoint

    digitalpoint Well-Known Member

    What you are looking for already is a setting.

    AdminCP -> Options -> Node & Forum List -> Create Pages for Categories
     
  16. Digital Doctor

    Digital Doctor Well-Known Member

    Well ... what is the page ?
    Just the category and the subforums ?
    Does it look exactly like it would if the category was actually a forum ? ie. just list the subforums ?
     
  17. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    I understand that, this feature is cool and Brogan already pointed this out for me. The problem now is that when you set your site to treat categories as pages it does just that as far as the title of the page is concerned and showing it in the serps. However, it does not show the proper description for each category in the serps as you have set it in your admin.

    If anyone is unclear of what I am referring to here are some images.

    This display the correct category description as set in the ACP.

    cat.JPG

    This is what is shown in the google Serps.
    The description is wrong, it shows random stuff related to the site and not the actual description which in turn effects my site's rankings and overall impact of SEO on the site.

    cat2.JPG
     
    erich37 likes this.
  18. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    So am I the only person who this issue is important to?

    If so does anyone know of a dev who would be willing to fix this for me for a fee?

    Thanks.
     
  19. Mike

    Mike XenForo Developer Staff Member

    I've already fixed it for the next release (so that descriptions of categories end up in meta descriptions, provided you show them on the "thread" list page).
     
    erich37, Claudio, optrex and 4 others like this.
  20. Gary Becks

    Gary Becks Member

    Thanks a lot mike. Any time frame on that release?
     

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