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): mysite.com/index.php?option=com_content&Itemid=69&id=34
* 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
* 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.
I have to say that initially the support request was not handled well, but the effort to get on top of the problem via my escalation was extremely customer-centred. You can learn a lot about a team not by the mistakes they make, but how they deal with them. I continue to be a happy subscriber.
SEF url management is centralized, easy and time-saving, with a wide range of customization options. You can control redirects from a 404 request list, point the duplicate urls which Joomla generates to a main SEF url, manage titles and meta tags easily, and of course there's integration of some of Google's analytic data - which comes very handy.
One of the best features is the 404 page - not only it is fully customizable but sh404SEF automatically presents the closest matches, and its estimations are very accurate. Thus visitors are assisted to stay and browse, instead of leaving when hitting a 404.
Support is also very good.
That's the one component I can't do without, a big thank you to the developers.
Thanks a lot for you support! This is very much appreciated and helps us a lot to keep being focused and motivated :)
After a few weeks tinkering around with it I managed to get it working to a grat extent. Nothing that I couldnt have done with Joomla - it helped with titles and meta management, having everything in one place.
All of a sudden SH404SEF decided to stop working. The issue I was particularly experiencing was 'titles and meta manager' - it for some reason decided to stop mnaging page titles and displayed the basic Joomla page title.
I madecontact with support on the 23/12/12 and my query was answered within 48 hours with a very basic 'what Joomla version?'. This continued for approximately one week with one question answers which always took 48 hours to answer. At one point it was advised 'just uninstall and install it agin'.
Cutting a long story short, 'Jimie' logged into my site and basically responded:
'your website is a PAIN'. 'You have too many plugins' 'It has lots of JS errors'. 'I can no longer help. Go and fix it yourself.'
Ok. Im a commercial user. I think I paid around 40 dollars for this component.
I agree with the many other users of this component that it is 'highly sensitive' to other useful plugins that your site may be running. Its almost a lottery whether the software will run on your site in the long term. My experience is that over the initial 30 days (which covers the money back guarantee) you are less likely to run into any issues.
Secondly as others have pointed out, the support basically stinks. If you have a question it will take 48 hours for a response. When they get fed up of someone - there is a tendency (as other users have experienced here!) to say - your website is crap, go away!
If you like me are a commercial user and rely on this plugin to help your own commercial or other clients activities I would personally avoid. Long term there just isnt the human compassion to sort out your issues if it goes beyond the 'uninstall and reinstall' (which was advised)
I have a sincere mission now, extrapoloting this component from my site so that it doesnt impact my URLs or my Google rankings.
Avoid like the plague.
Sorry you feel so bad about support, but I can only ask readers to do as you say: please check other reviews about support.
I usually do not enter that sort of discussion, but your words are too harsh to let go. Here is the actual time line:
1rst post Dec. 23 at 11:25PM (almost midnight)
Answer: Dec 24. 7:46AM (first thing in the morning)
Next post by you: 7:57AM (10 minutes later)
Answer: dec. 25 5:25pm : YES,24hrs later. Sorry, this was Christmas day!
and so on. I have checked the whole support thread and I have not found any reply after 12hrs, except for the one mentioned above that was done on the Christmas day. And even 12hrs is when you posted late at night, and we answered the next day.
I have also read the other reviews again and could not find people saying "administrative display element seemed to break up and on occasion refused to save changes".
Now let me say that we tried to help you. This was very strange, because sh404SEF had been working for more than a year on that site, and all of a sudden no more page titles?
We made several proposals, then finally we asked for site admin credentials, searched, tested, checked and our support found the problem: you are now using a caching system that prevents the page title to be modified by Joomla extensions.
And yes, we cannot do anything about it. If the page is served from a cache, we cannot change it. No other Joomla extension can. That's a technical fact and there's no way around it.
Our suggestion to fix your site at this stage would simply be to use the Joomla! cache, which is very fine and efficient and of course works fine with other Joomla! extensions such as sh404SEF.
This extension is to make life more simple, not the other way around. To go into further detail, the security features are lacking. To stay secure year round prepare to pay year round even for large security vulnerabilities.
The thing that gets me are all of the cheaper/free extensions that are equivalent to this one don't have anywhere near as many problems.
I spent a lot of time and effort with this extension, in the end I was able to get everything working and have to say I not only feel as if I completely wasted my time but also feel a lot more appreciation towards some of the other extensions offered here.
It's important to state that the people I spoke with were very professional.
As you don't really point at any particular issue you had, I cannot really provide any specific answer. There are still a few comments I can make though:
First, a technical one: having a problem which appears when sh404SEF is on, and disappear when sh404SEF is off does NOT mean in any way that sh404SEF is causing the issue. Only that the fault, wherever it happens, only appears when SEF urls are on, and that's pretty different.
Best advice is to contact support, which can usually work things out but sometimes the faulty extensions cannot be fixed, or this is too complicated.
Second, the extension is not simply here "to make life more simple". It is here to achieve higher SEO performance and do more things in the simplest possible way, that's a little bit different.
I'm glad you were able to have your site running in the end, and that you appreciated the support professionalism.
Hopefully next time the ride will be smoother. sh404SEF has been around for more than 6 years now, but still has just been voted as part of the Top 10 extensions by Joomla! community magazine. I hope this shows we're still working hard on it on a day to day basis!
I bought this extension to kill duplicates in Google indexing.
It is resulted in:
1) increased site loading speed
2) increased number of duplicates
3) No custom 404 page as promised
Just check their support forum before to buy. You I have found dozens of users with the same problems but without any support to solve it.
I actually was so shocked that nowadays the products like sh404sef can survive.
I lost my time, my money and Google positions.
Sorry you have such bitter feelings. I think you should have tried contacting support before giving up less than 2 days after getting sh404SEF!
We could have answered your concerns:
- as with any SEF extension, there is a performance hit, on default install. Now with sh404SEF, you can enable not only a URL cache but also a global database cache that will actually speed up your site (user reports up to 10%)
- it is technically impossible for sh404SEF to create duplicate content. That's because sh404SEF does NOT create any url. It only "translates" them from non-sef to sef. Every URL you see on your site has been created by Joomla (and installed extensions), not by sh404SEF
However, sh404SEF does PROTECT you against this Joomla habit. I think you might have been mistaken by the fact that sh404SEF shows you a list of duplicated urls it has found in Joomla, and maybe you thought sh404SEF created them?
In any case, all those duplicate urls are grouped together by sh404SEF into one unique URL visible to search engines and visitors. That's one of its primary feature.
- the custom 404 page works fine. Again, you might have needed to talk to us in case something went wrong on your particular site, but that's also one of the founding block of sh404SEF. It's not only customizable, per language, but also includes a similar url feature, to help users go to the page they were probably looking for.
Hope this helps, do not hesitate to contact us back in case you want to have a second look.
Not only is this a highly recommended solution, we've been extremely impressed at the support provided.
The reason because i am writing a review now is the support:
I got some problems because of migrating my sites now. and here i realized that also the support of sh404sef is really really great!
I had an issue after upgrading from Joomla 1.5 to 2.5 with some urls in the main menu not going to right articles and not displaying properly. I posted my problem on the Forum and Jimie from their support team was very quick to respond. He found the solution and fixed the issue for me in the admin area of my web site. That saved me a lot of headache and I am very grateful for that. So, 2 thumbs up for the customer support!
btw, the solution to the problem is simple: just re-save the article in question and the link(s) pointing to it will work just fine.
Tonight I'll sleep a little better:)
The good: The extension is updated continuously and very well-maintained by the developer. I love the fact that SEF URLs are generated automatically and efficiently. In essence, you can activate this extension with little to no configuration and let it take care of the rest. It is great at finding URLs you didn't even know existed, and most of the time generates truly SEF URLs. I also love how easy it is to manage META tags.
The bad: The interface is not the most intuitive and has a bit of a learning curve to it, but overall is not too difficult to get used to. It desperately needs a 'Quick Edit' URLs feature as well, similar to their META tag management feature.
I think the worst part of this extension is the customer support. I lurked a lot more on the forums than asked questions myself, mainly because most of my questions had already been asked. What I saw was a lot of pointing the finger at other extensions for issues that sh404SEF should be responsible for. Sure, you could contact the other developers and ask them to help you change how URLs are generated for that extension, but isn't URL management the entire purpose of sh404SEF? It often seemed like the developer just wanted to wipe their hands clean with multiple issues and mark each of their threads as 'Solved' without really caring whether or not the issue was really solved -- sometimes with issues that were 100% a result of sh404SEF. To me, that's totally unacceptable when you are technically paying for the support.
The extension is a little primitive in the sense that there is no way to control how individual components generate URLs or META tags, other than the standard extensions it comes integrated with. Your only option is to use the extension's own router, which most of the time has limited versatility. You can also manually edit each SEF URL created by that component, which is way too much work.
Conclusively, I do wish sh404SEF were more versatile and straightforward, but if you do not need completely custom SEF URLs and META tags that vary according to extension, sh404SEF is a great value and should more than satisfy your SEF needs.
Thanks for your taking the time to put an extensive review of sh404SEF. It's an interesting one, because you seem to be looking at sh404SEF from a specific angle, as a "SEF url manager".
sh404SEF is not anymore only focused on creating nice urls. You can and you will always manually customize any url on your site, and for the most common extensions, there's strong capability to tailor the SEF url build up. But we've been focusing much more on SEO. For instance, automatic management of duplicate urls created by Joomla is in my mind far more important than anything else, in these times of Panda and Penguin Google updates. That focus on SEO directed the introduction of features such as Analytics, "social SEO" and so much more.
As for interface, it's always a matter of workflow and probably a bit of taste, but as the first sh404SEF for Joomla! 3 version is nearing release, now is probably a good time to review. I'd be happy to hear what you found less intuitive and requiring a learning curve, please feel free to contact me.
Please note that many users performing customization on many urls usually prefer to export urls into a spreadsheet, make changes and import them back.
Now again, the introduction of Bootstrap in Joomla 3 will facilitate the introduction of nice UI features.
As you have seen in the reviews here on JED, support is usually a rather positive side for sh404SEF. It struck me in your comment that you didn't had any bad experience, but only commented on a "general feeling", looking up the forum.
sh404SEF is interacting with a lot of extensions, and it is indeed very often happens that source and solution of issues are in other extensions. I can't recall how many relative urls I've seen used for instance, making images or styles disappear when sh404sef is activated, thus making it look as if sh404SEF is causing the issue when it's not.
Another factor to keep in mind while looking through the support forum is that several major extensions have built in support for sh404SEF. In such cases, URL settings and even suport is to be found directly inside those extension themselves. The first that come to my mind are K2, Flexicontent or redShop for instance.
It works out of the box. Support is quick and efficient.
I experienced a few minor problems but it turned out that SH404SEF had nothing to do with them. It was about general system configuration.
Actually anyone involved with Joomla needs to have a piece of mind to be able to troubleshoot possible issues using available resources, and that comes with experience. Support forum, documentation etc are excellent. Many extensions for 3-rd party components are included in the package so you don't have to pay for them.
I am totally happy with SH404SEF. Recommend.