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Moving forward with Composr

ocPortal has been relaunched as Composr CMS, which is now in beta. ocPortal 9 will be superseded by Composr 10.

Head over to compo.sr for our new site, and to our migration roadmap. Existing ocPortal member accounts have been mirrored.


How could OCPortal best provide a professional community site?

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Posted
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#34598 (In Topic #7803)
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Community saint

Hi, I've been evaluating OCPortal for my company's online community project. I've looked through the documentation and tutorials for a couple of days now, and it appears that this could be achieved in several ways, from member profiles to catalogues, perhaps even galleries. Therefore I feel at this point that it would be best for me to simply ask this question, rather than trying to piece together the answer myself. Any help will be very much appreciated!

Here's the question:
How can OCPortal best provide a community profile site for professionals? Our initial population base would possibly reach the thousands, so we're looking to:
  • provide a rich, well formatted customized profile for member identification, major skills and experience,
  • have the profiles available to the general public, especially through search engines,
  • use keywording of profiles, with the keywords used as navigation in menus (hopefully having the keywords included in SEF URL's in the menus),
  • perform mass importation of profiles from spreadsheets/databases (we will customize the import files to match any necessary OCPortal criteria)
  • provide managed member commenting on news articles (perhaps even individual blogs)
  • turn over each member's profile to the members to self-manage and update.

We have OCF installed for the profile capabilities but did not plan to actively use it as a forum, as the world has almost completely gone to the blogs lately :) We don't need a full explanation (but if you have a step by step walkthrough, we'd be very glad to see it!) but we do need a recommendation as to what would work best for all of this.

Thanks in advance for any help!
David

 
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Posted
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#34635
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Hi,

provide a rich, well formatted customized profile for member identification, major skills and experience,

Extra fields for skills and experience could be added as custom profile fields. To make the display screens all custom formatted would require some template editing on the OCF member profile templates. In particular, the OCF_MEMBER_PROFILE_PAGE template.

have the profiles available to the general public, especially through search engines,

That shouldn't really be an issue. I suppose one thing to enhance that would be to link to the member directory (site:members) from your main menu, so that it's easier to find.

use keywording of profiles, with the keywords used as navigation in menus (hopefully having the keywords included in SEF URL's in the menus),

This isn't currently a feature currently. I've just added something that might help you into what will become our next patch release. In the next patch release, custom profile fields with the names 'Keywords' and 'Description' will automatically get set in the meta tags for the profile screens they are defined on.
I've also added a little hidden feature that will allow you to use usernames in URLs instead of member-IDs. That should give you the nice SEF URLs you desire. To turn this on in the next patch release you'll need to type this into OcCLE:

Code

:set_value('username_profile_links','1');

perform mass importation of profiles from spreadsheets/databases (we will customize the import files to match any necessary OCPortal criteria)

This would be relatively easy for a programmer. First save the data in a CSV format, then write some code into the data_custom/execute_temp.php file that uses PHP's CSV functionality to read in the data, and call up ocPortal's member adding API based on it.
If you'd like one of us to look into getting this done for a CSV file, please get in touch via a support ticket and we'll give a quote.

provide managed member commenting on news articles (perhaps even individual blogs)

That's standard.

turn over each member's profile to the members to self-manage and update.

We've been talking about using OCF member profiles to store these bulk-imported members, so this pretty much looks after itself. Either:
  • Just edit the password field for a member account when a real person needs to login to that account, and tell that person that password
  • Use real email addresses in the account profiles, and then the real person could gain access via using the 'lost password' feature.

Hope that helps. I know it's not very detailed, but hopefully it'll crystallise some things for you.


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Was I helpful?
  • If not, please let us know how we can do better (please try and propose any bigger ideas in such a way that they are fundable and scalable).
  • If so, please let others know about ocPortal whenever you see the opportunity.
  • If my reply is too Vulcan or expressed too much in business-strategy terms, and not particularly personal, I apologise. As a company & project maintainer, time is very limited to me, so usually when I write a reply I try and make it generic advice to all readers. I'm also naturally a joined-up thinker, so I always express my thoughts in combined business and technical terms. I recognise not everyone likes that, don't let my Vulcan-thinking stop you enjoying ocPortal on fun personal projects.
  • If my response can inspire a community tutorial, that's a great way of giving back to the project as a user.
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Posted
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#34641
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Community saint

Thank you Chris, that helps a great deal. I'd thought that the forum member profile may be best, but after seeing the other options, I wasn't as certain as I needed to be.

The Keyword and Description being included in the meta tags would be helpful, but I was more hoping that the keywords could be used directly in generating navigation links (such as tag lists/clouds). The best SEO we will get is if the unique search terms we've found are included in the site navigation as well as the page title, metas, content, etc. I'll look into this more, possibly the Search or Match functions could help us out.

Regarding the CVS consulting, I need to put in the custom profile fields first. I'll definitely contact you for your assistance with creating an import function at the right time.

Thank you for your help!
David
 
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Posted
Rating:
#34660
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The Keyword and Description being included in the meta tags would be helpful, but I was more hoping that the keywords could be used directly in generating navigation links (such as tag lists/clouds). The best SEO we will get is if the unique search terms we've found are included in the site navigation as well as the page title, metas, content, etc. I'll look into this more, possibly the Search or Match functions could help us out.

There's currently no automated feature for this, but it's an interesting idea. Let us know if you need our help and we may be able to give you a quote.


Become a fan of ocPortal on Facebook or add me as a friend. Add me on on Twitter.
Was I helpful?
  • If not, please let us know how we can do better (please try and propose any bigger ideas in such a way that they are fundable and scalable).
  • If so, please let others know about ocPortal whenever you see the opportunity.
  • If my reply is too Vulcan or expressed too much in business-strategy terms, and not particularly personal, I apologise. As a company & project maintainer, time is very limited to me, so usually when I write a reply I try and make it generic advice to all readers. I'm also naturally a joined-up thinker, so I always express my thoughts in combined business and technical terms. I recognise not everyone likes that, don't let my Vulcan-thinking stop you enjoying ocPortal on fun personal projects.
  • If my response can inspire a community tutorial, that's a great way of giving back to the project as a user.
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