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  • On my blog I have Categories (done using tags) and a monthly Archive

    With the blog posts themselves the regular SEO stuff is great, I can give unique meta title tags & description tags.

    The issue:
    When you click on any of the Categories or any of the months (or author's names) you get a list of the blog posts associated with that criteria. This list page uses the container template and so the [[*pagetitle]], [[*longtitle]] [[*introtext]] which I use for the meta tags will be the same for every list page.

    Now when I go to Google's Webmaster Tools => Search Appearance => HTML Improvements I see Duplicate meta descriptions and Duplicate title tags so the more categories, the more archives, the more authors you have, over time, the more duplicates you will get. Which is bad for SEO.

    The (partial) solution:
    The way I have solved this, for example for the title tag, is by writing a snippet that I put in the template title tag and that reads what the blog tag (available in $_GET['tag']) is and outputs an appropriate length string (some of the tags are too short) for the title. Similarly for the description tags.

    That works fine..... for me, whos happy to go into the code whenever I create a new category. But it's not a good solution for my clients who will need boxes to fill in.

    Can anyone think of a user friendly way of doing this?

    Thanks
    Mike
    • Hey Mike,

      The best solution for this is to put <meta name="robot" content="noindex,follow" /> tags on your category/archive pages. That way they won't be indexed, but all links will be followed. Archive pages have no SEO value at all, some category pages do however. In your case, a blog, the category/tag pages have no value either.

      You can automate this by doing a small check using an output variable:
      [[*template:eq=`ID-OF-YOUR-TAG/CAT-TPL`:then=`<meta name="robot" content="noindex,follow" />`]]
        Sterc Internet & Marketing | MODX Founding Partner | Chairman of the MODX Advisory Board

        In need of a MODX consult? Try our MODX Developers Experts!
      • Hi GP Sietzema,

        Yes, of course, you are right, that is a much better solution!

        I shall do it that way.

        Thanks for pointing it out to me.

        Cheers
        Mike
        • Please let me know if webmastertools also picks up that noindex and will show you a clean 'HTML improvements' report.
            Sterc Internet & Marketing | MODX Founding Partner | Chairman of the MODX Advisory Board

            In need of a MODX consult? Try our MODX Developers Experts!
          • Quote from: nomark at Aug 01, 2013, 12:16 PM
            Please let me know if webmastertools also picks up that noindex and will show you a clean 'HTML improvements' report.

            OK, will do, but I expect it will take some time. I've resubmitted the site to Google's index in the Fetch as Google section, so just need to wait for it to be crawled again I think.
            • A way to speed up the process is by using a Google Sitemap: http://rtfm.modx.com/display/ADDON/GoogleSiteMap

              It's a snippet which generates an XML Sitemap. Use the snippet on an empty page with page type XML and submit it in Google Webmastertools. This speeds up indexing in Google considerably. Please be aware that both the snippet call and the page where you placed the snippet call should be non-cached.
                Sterc Internet & Marketing | MODX Founding Partner | Chairman of the MODX Advisory Board

                In need of a MODX consult? Try our MODX Developers Experts!
              • Yes, I use GoogleSiteMap ( and oops was caching the page )

                But GoogleSiteMap has never shown the Category, Archive or Author pages because they are like pseudo pages they aren't separate resources. Google picks them up from links rather than the sitemap. Unless you are saying that having a sitemap.xml means the Google crawler will be a more frequent visitor?
                • Not really, you're just making it easier for Google. But you can hit the 'reindex sitemap' button, which should hint Google to crawl it asap. Also, you can manually change the crawl rate in the 'Site settings', see attached screenshot.
                    Sterc Internet & Marketing | MODX Founding Partner | Chairman of the MODX Advisory Board

                    In need of a MODX consult? Try our MODX Developers Experts!
                  • OK, i'll try that.

                    Thanks for your help and suggestions.
                    • Just noticed that line of code says "robot" instead of robots it should be this:

                      [[*template:eq=`TEMPLATE-ID`:then=`<meta name="robots" content="noindex,follow">`]]