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Getting started

How do I install the application?

First, locate the Upload These Files directory inside the downloaded package. This directory will contain a single install.php file. Use a file transfer program to upload the install.php file to your server.

The install.php file should be uploaded into the directory where you want to install the script. This means that it should typically be the only file in that directory. For example, if you want to install the script in a subdirectory named 'seo', you will upload the script to 'seo/install.php'.

Navigate to the install.php file in your web browser and follow the on-screen instructions to install.

The installer is giving me an error.

If the installer gives you an error message, read it carefully. If you aren't sure what an error means or how to fix it, please contact me. I'll be happy to help.

The installer seems to be frozen.

The installer displays a spinning indicator when it is performing back-end work. If the installer has been stuck on one of these indicators for more than a few minutes, a script error probably occurred. Please contact me. I'll be happy to help.

How do I set up the database?

Please create a new, empty MySQL database to avoid any conflicts. Then, create a MySQL user, and write down the username and password you choose. Finally, assign the user to the database. If you need help with any of this, please contact your web host, as they are best suited to help you through this process.

After all that is done, enter the database name, username, and password into the installer. The hostname is usually "localhost" unless you are specifically told otherwise. The default port is 3306. If you need to specify a different port, enter the hostname in the format "localhost:4406".

If you receive "access denied" errors from the installer, then some of the credentials you provided are incorrect. If the error message says "using password: yes", then the password is incorrect. If it says "no", then the username or database name is incorrect.

Do I need to configure file permissions?

If the installer extracted files without any errors, then you do not need to configure file permissions — they have been configured automatically.

What should I do after installation?

Access the admin panel and head over to Settings » Extensions to view the built-in extensions, which are disabled by default. Click the "Enable" button on an extension to add it to your script.

After enabling an extension, you might see a warning at the top of the admin panel. Click the link in the warning and configure the extension as necessary. Note that the warning may not immediately disappear, even if you configure it properly.

I'm missing the backlink tools.

Please refer to the previous question, "What should I do after installation?" for instructions on how to fix this.

Tools and features

Google & Bing SERP

These tools will test a provided keyword to find your rank on the search results page.

Top Search Queries

This tool collects data from Alexa and finds the top 5 search queries that lead visitors to your website. It also displays the following for each query:

  • Estimated percentage of searches
  • Estimated search volume per month
  • Estimated advertising CPC
  • Estimated market value (CPC × volume)

Volume, advertising, and market data is collected from serps.com.

Indexed Pages

Displays the total number of indexed pages by your website on both Google and Bing.

Robots.txt

This tool parses and displays the rules in your robots.txt file, organized into a table. It also displays any sitemaps from the robots.txt file, followed by the raw text.

Sitemap

This tool displays all sitemaps that are discoverable by search engines. If a sitemap is not displayed here, it will likely not be found by search engines.

Along with each sitemap, the following information is displayed:

  • The http status (200 means the sitemap is working)
  • The sitemap type/format
  • The number of entries in the sitemap
  • A percentile representing how difficult it will be for search engines to find the sitemap
Submit Sitemaps

Displays the sitemaps from the Sitemap tool and adds a button to submit these sitemaps to both Google and Bing.

Alexa Rank

Displays the global Alexa rank for this domain name. Lower is better. 1 is the lowest possible rank.

Crawlability Test

Allows you to test whether a page on your website is crawlable and/or indexable by search engines, accounting for your robots.txt file as well as meta tags.

The built-in robots.txt parser accounts for all standards and rules defined by Google.

Mobile Support Test

This tool checks your website's sourcecode to detect whether or not it will be considered "mobile-friendly" by Google in the search results. It checks meta tags, stylesheets, and embedded styles.

Headers

Checks the headers returned by the page for errors or problems. Allows you to check multiple pages on your website. This tool will also check redirection, and explains whether a redirection is permanent or temporary.

Speed Test

Runs a speed test using Pingdom and displays the results, along with optimization tips from Google Webmaster Tools.

Link Analysis

Parses the webpage and displays all links, including the anchor text, whether or not it is internal or external, and whether it is nofollow or dofollow.

Keyword Density

Finds the most common words on the webpage, and displays them alongside the page title and meta description. Each phrase includes:

  • The number of occurrences on that page
  • Whether or not the phrase is in the page title
  • Whether or not the phrase is in the meta description
  • The estimated weight of the phrase

SEO tip — a phrase that appears in both the page title and meta description should have a higher weight than a phrase that does not. In this tool, a higher weight means it is more likely to trigger a higher rank.

For example, google.com shows the phrase "search" as its top phrase, with a weight of 2.4%, and is in the meta description. As expected.

Extract Meta Tags

Pulls meta tags out of the page and displays whether or not that meta tag is used by Google and Bing.

Keyword Research

Displays estimated monthly search volume, CPC, and market value for a keyword. This data is collected from serps.com.

Competition

Uses Google to find your competitors for a specific keyword. Displays their ranks, link strength, number of backlinks, number of unique backlinks, and % nofollow backlinks.

The backlink stats in this tool are not available without the Backlink Tool Pack plugin.

Administration

Accessing the admin panel

To access the admin panel, you need to change the URL in your web browser to navigate to the /admin/ directory.

For example, if you installed SEO Studio at http://example.com/studio/, you'll want to go to http://example.com/studio/admin/.

Monitoring activity

The Activity Log page allows the admin to view system activity. As of version 1.0.0, only account events are shown. If you would like additional events to be shown, please feel free to open a support ticket and send feedback or suggestions.

Changing settings

The Settings page allows the admin to modify system settings.

  • "Allow registration" controls whether visitors can sign up.
  • "Show login button" controls whether the login button is shown to visitors.
  • "Automatically update Studio" controls whether updates will be installed automatically.
  • "Automatically update installed plugins and themes" controls whether updates for plugins and themes will be installed automatically.
  • "Save a backup before updating" controls whether backups are created of any affected files before an update occurs. Uses additional disk space.
  • "Display errors" controls whether errors are shown to visitors. Useful only for debugging. Should be disabled otherwise.
  • "Cache tool results" controls whether tool results will be cached or not. Cache is stored in the database.
  • "Cache duration in days" controls how long cache is stored.
Clearing cache

The Cache page allows the admin to clear expired cache, clear all cache, and view disk usage. Cache is cleared automatically by the cron job.

Managing & installing plugins

The Plugins page allows the admin to enable, disable, uninstall, or edit settings for all installed plugins. Click "Install a plugin" at the top right to install a plugin .zip file.

Changing the logo

The Header page allows the admin to replace the Studio logo with their own .png logo. It is recommended that the logo have a height of 90px, and it will be downsized to 45px (this reduction is for retina devices).

You must clear browser cache before the new logo will display.

Changing the homepage text

The Homepage page allows the admin to easily change the text displayed on the main page for visitors and search engines.

Customizing the tools page

The Tools page allows the admin to rearrange tools and create/delete/rename categories.

  • To rearrange tools, click and drag a tool into a new empty slot. If you click and drop a tool onto another tool, the two tools will be swapped.
  • Click on a category title to change it.
  • Click the "Add another section" button at the bottom to add a new category.
  • Use the up/down arrows to move categories up or down the tools page.
Managing users

The Users page allows the admin to view all users, manage accounts, and create new users. Clicking on an account allows you to change their email, password, manage their sites, and view their tool history. You can also see when they were last online and when they signed up.

Translating into another language

The Languages page allows the admin to view, edit, and create new languages in the system. When editing or creating languages, you can see and translate all phrases.

Viewing tool usage history

The Tool Usage page allows the admin to view which tools have been used, by who, for what website, and when. If a user is not logged in when they use a tool, their IP address is shown instead.

Manually running the cron job

The Cron Job page allows the admin to view information on how to set up the cron job. A button is also provided to manually run it. If your cron job is already running automatically, you will see confirmation that it is working instead.

Joining the Cron Service

Licensed copies of SEO Studio can join the free cron service which automatically configures and runs your cron job once per day. Your application must be at a public URL for this to work.

Viewing and installing updates

To see available updates, visit the Updates page. Each update which has yet to be installed is shown. Licensed copies of SEO Studio can install these updates.

When an update errors, the error will be shown in red text below the update name. You can click the blue "?" button at the bottom right of the page and search the error for more information.

Viewing installed updates

If you'd like to see which updates have been installed already, click "View log" on the Updates page.

Having problems? Run diagnostics!

We've included an easy tool to detect problems with your installation. If you're ever experiencing trouble with any features in SEO Studio, go to the Diagnostics page and run it.

If you need customer support, the "Server" information on the right side of this page can be helpful information for them.

I'm getting "Access denied (invalid key)"

If you're receiving this error, go to the Diagnostics page and click "Reauthorize" on the right side of the page. This error occurs when you install another copy of SEO Studio using the same license.