Search Cloud (Zeitgeist)

3rd May 2007 stk

How Visitors Land on Your Blog

Who hasn't looked through their b2evolution back-office statistics page, marveling at all the unusual search terms that visitors employed to find your blog posts? Some are funny. Some are strange. Some might even be downright scary. All of the terms are 'feedback' and says something about your audience and your blog.

We've made a plug-in that moves these obscure, sometimes humorous, search terms to your front page and displays them a cloud-like fashion. In a nutshell, it gathers all of the search terms from the hitlog (last 30 days, by default), from one (or all) of your blogs. It sorts them and tallies the most popular ones. Using parameters, you tell the plug-in how many of the most popular terms to show, in what order and where they should show. Finally, you can style the cloud of terms to your liking, using CSS.

Before you know it ... you've added a "search cloud" to your b2evolution blog! If you want to be fancy, you will call it a "zeitgeist" (which is a German term meaning "the spirit of the times") and claim you got the idea from Google (but really, we got it from here).

We've added features we're sure you'll like. For high-traffic websites, there's caching capability (user-defined cache period), to save server resources. For installations with multiple blogs, you can decide which blog to use. You can display as many (or as few) terms as you like. Each term is linked to the post entry it 'found'. Call it your "Zeitgeist", your "Search Cloud" or whatever you want ... because you can easily alter the title. It even has the ability to filter objectionable words. And of course, you can completely control the styling, with access to the default xhtml and CSS. We didn't think of everything, but we did code in some flexibility. ;)

  1. Introduction
  2. Installation (v1.8.x & v1.9x)
  3. Styling the Cloud
  4. The Future