MediaWiki has some interesting tools for on-site SEO. Although special pages like 'Short pages' and 'Dead-end pages' look like they were taken form the 'post panda' era, they are actually quite old. Others like 'Long pages' and 'Orphaned pages' were probably created from editorial reasons. By contrast, the MediaWiki built-in sitemap generator is relatively new and probably created for search engines.
In order to expand the this marketing tool-kit, one should install special extensions. In this post I will discuss some of these extensions.
Advanced Meta Extension
The extension Advanced Meta adds some fields to the edit form in order to insert meta-data into a MediaWiki page. The index and follow check-boxes is used to add the respective robots meta tags. One may also add keywords and description meta-data through the respective text-boxes. In addition, one may set in the LocalSettings.php which Namespaces will be indexed by default.
In order to the revert the wiki pages default title, one may add the $wgAllowDisplayTitle to the LocalSettings.php or use the Add HTML Meta and Title extension. Additionally, one may change the title formt through the 'MediaWiki:Pagetitle' wiki page.
Social Media Sharing Buttons
ShareThis is a basic social sharing extension, that includes closed list of sharing buttons. Although it supports some notable social websites like Delicious and Digg, it doesn't supports other websites like Facebook and Twitter.
The AddThis extension, On the other hand, has a list of more than 300 services buttons, and it is highly customizable. In addition, one may enable the 'address Bar Sharing Analytics' feature in order to track other sharing paths. In order to track AddThis usage, one should register in the AddThis website and set the 'AddThis Profile ID' in the LocalSettings.php.
The add to Any extension is not customizable, however it has a personalization mechanism. This mechanism enables it to display for each user his most used buttons on top. The Add to Any have a design problem that interapt in the editing prossess. Although there is a patch for this 'bug', it stored on a MediaWiki page and so is not safe for use.
Finally, a marketing campaign may be useless if we cant measure our activities effect . Mediawiki has three analytics tools: Google Analytics Integration, Open Web Analytics (OWA) and FireStats. The OWA extension is open source analytic software for PHP platforms. one may find a comparison between OWA and Google Analytics in the OWA Website.
- Part 1: Combat Wiki Spam
- Part 2: MediaWiki for SMB
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Yaniv is an independent writer that inquires search engines in general and topical search engines in particular. He also explores methods for optimizing custom-built search engines.