Tips & Guides

SEO and Metatags

Search Engine Optimisation is part of the foundation of every SiteControlSystem website. There is a dedicated SEO module which allows you to view google analytics data, page performance statistics, keyword rankings, SEO reports and much more. The SEO module is available to websites which have an SEO licence for the SiteControlSystem

Page Metatags

Even without the SEO module, you can still do much to improve your web pages rankings. If your site has the SEO option enabled, you can update the metatags for the website. To do this, go to the Edit Page tool in the Website Content module and select a page. At the top of the page editor screen, you should see a tab labeled 'SEO & Accessibility

If this tab is not visible, then the 'enable SEO' option is not activated in your site options. To activate SEO features you will need to contact a SCS Administrator.

The fields in this page are as follows:

Page Title - this is what appears in the <title> html tag and is visible at the top of you browser window. The page title is one of the most influential factors in on-site search engine optimisation. If this field is left blank, then the Page Title in the Properties tab is used instead.

Meta Description - another important part of your pages' SEO - the meta description is usually (but not always) shown in search engine results pages. This description is not visible in the browser itself. If this is left blank, then the meta description is taken from the summary field in the Properties tab.

Meta Keywords - not used as much by search engines these days, but some search engines still lend weight to the meta keywords.

Custom Metatags - this can be used to put any metatags in the page that you like, for example some systems like google webmaster tools require verification that you have access to a webiste, so you can put a metatag in for this purpose.

URL rewrite to - this is the script on the server that processes the page. Most of the pages use page.aspx, but some like the contact page use different processing scripts. It is not recommended that you change this. See the URL Rewriting section below.

Impressions - this is the number of times that a page has been viewed. Not all websites to impression counting. If you require this facility, you will need to ask a CMS administrator to enable this option.

Access Key - this is the keyboard shortcut that is assigned to the link if the page is part of the site navigation.


URL Rewriting

All content in the SiteControlSystem is stored in a database and the web pages are dynamically generated but a small number of processing scripts. This means that the we urls of each page look something like page.aspx?pageid=14&folder=5. This makes website addresses difficult for people to remember, and also is not helpful for search engines which prefer to have natural text in the urls. To deal with this situation, all SiteControlSystem websites use a technique called URL Rewriting. This translates the pages into more meaningful urls which the server can recognise. An example is . When the SiteControlSystem website sees this url, it maps the url to the folder with the foldername of 'clients' and the page in that folder with the filename 'shoulderdoc'. This then translates the names into the ID numbers of the folder and pages, and allows the database to find the content for this page. The processing script for this url is defined in the 'URL Rewrite to' field of the SEO tab (described above). It is not recommended that you change this value as it could cause page not found errors if done incorrectly.

In order for url rewriting to work, each folder has to be assigned a locally unique foldername (ie no other folder in the same parent folder can have the same 'foldername' setting). Additionally, each page in the folder must have a locally unique 'filename'. since the folders' foldername and the pages' filename form part of a url, there are restrictions on what characters you can use in these fields. The only allowable characters are letters, numbers, hyphens, underscores.


Folders can be nested and the system can recognise nested folders, so an example would be When the SiteControlSystem sees this url, it looks for a page with the filename 'testimonials' inside the folder 'haygrove', which is inside the folder 'archive' which is inside the folder 'clients'.

URL rewriting is all handled automatically. When you add a folder to the site, the foldername field is automatically generated from the title of the folder (with illegal characters stripped out and spaces replaced with underscores). Similarly, when you add a page, the filename is automatically generated from the page's title field. If you want to sculpt your SEO a little more, you can manually changed the folders and file names that appear in the urls.

Some sites have url rewriting disabled - especially ones that have a very large number of pages, but this is the exception to the rule. To find out whether your site has url rewriting enabled, go to any page on the site, if the url is like then url rewriting is not enabled. If the url is like then url rewriting is enabled.