The Joomla! Extensions Directory ™

sh404SEF Popular ComponentPlugin

We created sh404SEF® for Joomla with SEO in mind. sh404sef helps you improve your search engine rankings and get more traffic to your website. Satisfy many of the Google recommendations for search engine optimization with just a few clicks.
sh404sef also includes many security features.

sh404SEF® id the most popular and longest developed Joomla seo extension. We are dedicated, full-time Joomla professionals who work each and every day to bring you the very best extensions and prompt support. Our staff have over 20 years of combined experience with Joomla (and Mambo) and we maintain some of the longest, continually developed Joomla add-ons available.

* sh404SEF rewrites Joomla URL to user-friendly format (SEF URL or URL rewriting):

* NEW: Google Authorship support
* NEW: Twitter Cards support
* NEW: Google Analytics Universal support
* NEW: Google Tags manager support
* NEW: all output through JLayout, easily override in template
* full support for Google rel="prev" and rel="next" header tags, to improve SEO of paginated content
* built in caching database layer, speeds up sh404SEF. Backed by memcache, APC, etc
* Create and insert Open Graph data
quickly and easily add social media buttons to your entire site to allow sharing on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Linkedin and Pinterest.
* Integrated Google Analytics including support for social sharing
* Automatically generate tiny URLs (shURLs) for your content
* Full urls and bulk meta data management
Multi-lingual support
* Easily redirect 404s to suggested SEF URLS
* Instantly add global support for canonical URLs (add rel="canonical" HTTP headers)
* Remove duplicate URLs, a common problem with Joomla websites
* Create human ear and search engine friendly (SEF) URLs
* Control URL re-write mode on a per-application basis
* Support for Google News URL format
* Easily customize the page title and page description with bulk updater
* Create customized error pages (i.e. 404) with relevant links and other info
* Harden against cross-site scripting attacks (XSS)
* Harden against malicious page requests
* Limit flooding attacks
* Protect input forms such as the contact page from spam (using Project Honey Pot)
* Control site access from suspicious domains (using IP address whitelisting and blacklisting)

We Support many third-party SEF plugins via the standard Joomla installer.
Components we support natively include: VirtueMart, K2, FlexiContent, Kunena, Jomsocial, Community Builder, mosetsTree and more.

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Reviews: 1
The component does its job very well, either if you are a total joomla beginner (just publish it and leave the settings), either you are more pro, and than can manage a lot of options and functions.

Had an incompatibility issue with a third party plugin - sh404sef support team solved it fast and well.
Reviews: 2
Support staff was very fast to respond and extremely helpful and professional in resolving what I thought to be a component conflict with a third-party component.

Even when it turned out the problem was caused by my own error, they never dropped the air of professionalism (as some other companies have been known to do!) and stayed with the ticket to make sure it was completely resolved.
Reviews: 4
This is a component you must have. It's a little tricky in the beggining but once you understand it, it's very easy to use. The BEST part are the forums where you can get a reply in less than 24 hours.
Reviews: 1
When we started using this plugin it made things so much smoother. The SEO-friendly links are just beautiful, the 404 redirection is amazing, and we use the generated shortURL's all the time. Then we found that it has a social share plugin that can be inserted as code into any of your PHP templates, modules, etc.

This is a must-have for every Joomla site!
Reviews: 1
Very useful extension and support service is very fast.

Good job.
Reviews: 5
I'm still fairly new with SEF/SEO and learning. The extension seems very flexible and the support has been extremely helpful and patient with my questions.
Reviews: 1
A great extension easy to install and use. The support is great and reactive.

I recommend it.
Reviews: 3
I have been using this extension for almost a year and I must say that the extension works as expected on sites that are hosted on Apache.

When it comes to NGINX, the extension does not work and the support is not helpful at all. Very poor customer service.

I recommend this extension for Apache users as there will hardly be any need for support however if you are using NGINX, please proceed with caution.
Owner's reply


Sorry that support could not help you setup your web server. Indeed, that's usually a bit out of scope for us, as it requires full access to server. Besides we're php developers, not system administrators!

However, regarding Nginx, I can only tell you this: since 2006, sh404SEF has been developed and tested using ONLY nginx (back then it was version 0.5.35 :) ) on a daily basis.
Nginx is the only web server I use - and love, so I'm positive it works, and that's also why we do publish on our site a sample configuration file for it.

Please come back to us if you want to give it another try.


Reviews: 11
... but than it was sold to a company and went "paid" which usually results in even better support, not here though.

The 404 log of sh404sef comes in handy and the rewriting and redirecting works as long as you have only a few extensions installed and ALL bring their own sh404 plugin. So it does not work e.g. with jDownloads or Akeeba Release System.

But the utter no go is the multilingual mess. Since 2011 they try to solve this bug of the missing "item associations" and as of today no solution in sight. In their forum threads they write "we are working on a solution" ... and then lock the thread and put "answered" in the heading.

Conclusion: works well on simple sites although it comes with a whopping price tag, stay away definitely for multilingual websites.
Owner's reply

Hi Carin,

I have to say your review is very confusing. Usually I try to identify what the problem a user is facing and respond to that, but in this case, I can only see erroneous statements:

The most important to me maybe: sh404SEF has NEVER BEEN SOLD to anyone. I started this project at the end of 2006 and 7 1/2 years later it's me doing all design and development (aside from contributed translations). I don't know where you get that information, but it's not correct.

Next is sh404SEF plugins: having a custom sh404SEF is NOT required for any extension. sh404SEF happily uses any extension router.php file. Of course, having a custom sh404SEF plugin allows creating much better urls.

Then multilingual: maybe the most puzzling: in 2011, there was no "item associations" in Joomla. They were introduced in Joomla 3.0.2 in november 2012. When sh404SEF for J! 3.x was released, it worked fine with them, as with previously available menu item associations, and has been working fine since.
Again, not sure where you got that information.

Multilingual support is extremely important to me, actually that's the reason sh404SEF was started, when there was no SEF extension handling Joomfish, back in Joomla 1.0 times. I'm also developing Josetta for Joomla! M.L. sites


Reviews: 6
What's an extension without support? I installed it and due to my own fault it did'nt work out of the box. I did not configure my language-settings right. So the guys at anything-digital helped me out and re-configured my language settings. From there SH404Sef worked out of the box. For as far as I can tell the product works fine altough I've not much experience with it yet. But as said GREAT support, priceless.

Reviews: 2
If you have a small site with articles, with one language it works well. If you have a large site, it is very slow. If in addition if you have a multilingual website is even more complex. If you are using jomsocial you I do not recommeded at all.
Reviews: 1
This extension gave me more headaches than profit. I had to remove it to in order to get other extensions to work.

URL management: standard Joomla SEF and .htaccess give the same result.
Alias management and 404 request: standard Joomla redirection manager does a good job too
shURL: usability not clear
Title & meta: makes it more complicated in Joomla. Use standard Joomla functions in stead.
Analysis: never got it working in Joomla 3.2.2, support gave up about this item.
Safety: may be the only benefit, no experience with this though.
404 page: only works if you don't set one component to joomla router.
Social SEO: poorly implemented, alternative free extensions work better

Most functionality is already present in Joomla 3.2.2 or can be implemented with little effort. Added functions don’t work well, alternative free extensions work better. Safety may be the only benefit. Support could be better.
Owner's reply


You do seem to have had a bad experience with sh404SEF, let me provide a bit more details at least on two extremely important things:

- "standard Joomla SEF and .htaccess give the same result" simply put: No
If you look superficially, yes, you get SEF urls with Joomla, and you get SEF urls with sh404SEF. But they are totally not the same, especially in keys SEO areas. sh404SEF are usually much shorter (no categories, or only one), much more to the point (no ids) but most importantly and I agree that's not easy to see: sh404SEF controls duplicate content on your site, while Joomla menu-based urls can only create duplicate content.

- support didn't give up on your issue with analytcs. You're one of two users with this problem. So far, we haven't managed to reproduced it on any of our servers, and we still don't know what's causing the problem, whether sh404SEF or not. Investigation is happening, and if the problem is with us, it'll be fixed.

On the lighter side:
- 404 page: yes, using Joomla router, you get Joomla! 404 page; using sh404SEF, you get sh404SEF page - which I do believe brings good marketing value to your site
- title and metas: a matter of taste and usage, I think. Many, many people prefer to have all meta data in one place, and the ability to override titles and description for multiple site pages on the same page
Most importantly, with sh404SEF, you specify metadata per URL, not per article, products, categories.
URLs are what's visible to search engines, not Joomla articles (see point 1 about menu-based urls used by Joomla)
- shUrl: not sure I understand your comment. sh404SEF provides a built in URL shortener, so that you don't have to rely on external service. Your site is doing the shortening, and so your urls are for instance.


Reviews: 1
We created a site using joomla and CMGroupBuying.

We attempted to install sh404SEF AFTER the site was set up, operational, and we had been using the "redirect" plugin.

It absolutely DID NOT integrate well at all. None of the already programmed redirected urls worked...and there were just too many 404 pages coming up to be dealt with.

This program is one of those things "I wish I had installed before creating the rest of my website" because maybe then it would have worked...but as it stands, it does NOTHING for our site and we have uninstalled it completely.
Owner's reply


Sorry for your bad experience. Indeed, installing ANY SEF extension after your site has launched and has been crawled by search engines requires some work.
Namely, those urls that are modified by the new extensions needs to be redirected to new ones.
That can be done either in a .htaccess file, or using sh404SEF built in redirection management.

However, I can already tell that from next version, sh404SEF will also check Joomla! own redirect manager database table in case some redirects have been stored there previously

Thanks and regards

Reviews: 2
The tool seems to do a very good job of helping to get rid of those thousands of pages of duplicate content. But there's one major thing about the way it works that should absolutely be covered in the documentation about how to use the product.

The second you turn on the product, all knowledge that google and other search engines have of your site is essentially gone. All URLs that are correct the moment before you turn on the product will get 404s the moment you enable SEF URLs. The tool a "404 request manager" to show you all the 404s that your site is now generating, and allows you to do 301 redirects from each old page to each new page. But:

1. You have to do it one URL at a time. Each URL takes three clicks and then you have to wait for that one to complete before you can go on to another. If you have 100s of pages of content, you're going to be there a while.
2. The documentation mentions that you need to watch the 404 request manager, but it says that you should only be getting those if you have "bad links" or "update links," making it seem like it's your fault that you have them. It says nothing about all of the links in Google that are now bad because you just changed all your URLs.

They know each old page; they know each new page. What's stopping them from putting in a 301 redirect from each old one to each new one?

FWIW, I confirmed this behavior via support:
Owner's reply

Thanks for you report. We have modified documentation to make the fact that URLs are modified - but this is kind of the point of getting a SEF extension! - clearer.

I do want to point out though that contrary to what you say, we have no idea what the old urls were, as they are made on the fly by Joomla and not store anywhere.

Whenever possible, we do try to auto-redirect from old to new, and that's enabled by default for sites previously using non-sef urls.

For sites running Joomla SEF urls, that's much more difficult because of high risks of "collision" between and is disabled by default, but can be enabled in configuration.


Reviews: 1
Having some trouble with this extension, but thanks to a very fast support everything works just fine.
I`m using also Artio SEF on many sites but the support is terrible there...
Reviews: 6
Good but, say good bye to stability, don't expect that it will works with ALL extension, there is a problem of compatibility
Reviews: 3
Been using for years with great success on many sites and certainly seems to help google rankings. Just needed to raise my first support ticket in a long time and had a quick response which fixed my issue. Highly recommended.
Reviews: 1
Very good component, it does great work.
Reviews: 1
This component is working on many websites of me since years. The support is great with fast response. Everything fine.
Reviews: 10
The best component for seo that you could want.

The best support that you can get up even to get into the backend of the site where there are problems!

Excellent: Five stars!
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