Sitemaps and Google Search

02 Oct 2018 Daniel Lewis

A common request we have after someone creates a new website is "Why isn't my site showing on Google?" 

As a webmaster, you generally have two options: 

1. Wait: Google and other search engines will automatically find your site and add it, although this may take several days or weeks;
2. Setup a Google account for your church and submit the website to Google Webmaster Tools.

To help your website appear on Google Search quicker and with no effort at all, Adventist Place will now automatically create a sitemap and every time you add or edit a page, event, blog post or other type of content we'll notify Google Search of the change.

You can read more about how this feature works on our support site

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Recurring Events are here

20 Sep 2018 Daniel Lewis

Today's latest release of Adventist Place focused on events and in particular brings recurring events. Here's the highlights:

  • You can now create an event that repeats daily, weekly, or on a selection of dates of your choice each with different start times.
  • Site visitors can now subscribe to event calendars to get the latest updates.
  • Duplicate an existing event to quickly get started creating a new event.
  • Event end times are now a required - any events previously created without an end time have had a end time automatically added of 1 hour after the start time.
  • Event times are now correctly displayed in the events local time zone.
  • The Image Chooser will show images you've uploaded as well as Unsplash images you've previously used.
  • Better SEO support for sharing of events and posts on social media though improved usage of Open Graph tags

Happy Thursday!

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NEW FEATURES 2018.9.12

12 Sep 2018 Scott Wegener

Videos:

  • You can now choose how videos are sorted in video playlists: Ordered (same as set in YouTube/Vimeo), Reverse order, Newest first, Oldest first.
  • Video Playlists will now pull in up to 100 videos from Youtube or Vimeo (previously this was about 20)
  • Notifications from HQ (that's us) can now include links in the email (which didn't appear in last week's Notification we sent out.)
  • You can now see how many views a video has had on your Site
  • You can now set an update frequency to Video channels - this is the frequency at which the YouTube and Vimeo channels are checked for new videos to display (hourly, daily, weekly, never)
  • Increased the time it takes to automatically sign out a User, to 6 hours
  • Pagination of Videos for theme Channel pages
  • Fixed the “more” menu link buttons bug (eg the 'three dots' to edit main menu items or events that weren't showing after a 'slow' click).

Remember: on any page in the dashboard you can click the round blue help button down the bottom right of the screen and type in the keyword of what you need help with - as long as it's not medical help (see your doctor for those kinds of issues...)

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NEW FEATURES 2018.9.04

04 Sep 2018 Scott Wegener

A few recent changes/additions of note:


> New Login

Adventist Place no longer uses myAdventist logins. It now has its own login service and houses its own accounts. It also includes a ‘HaveIBeenPwned' check when a user is setting a password and will not accept known compromised or poor passwords

All accounts had their password reset last week when this changed over. If you haven't logged in since this change, simply go to https://dashboard.adventist.place and select Forgot Password to get your new account up and running.


> Update your details

The My Account page, (click on the icon up the top right of the dashboard), now allows users to change their email and name, in addition to setting the language or close their account


> Place Listing Directory (admin sites only)

We’ve added Place Listing as a feature so Administration sites can display all the entities, of a particular type, within an administrative area of the SPD. It’s listings come from Adventist Cloud and don’t have to have an Adventist Place Site to be in the list. 


> Social Changes

With Facebook having changed the game some time back, we’ve modified the ‘switches and dials’ of how Social works on Adventist Place a little. This includes: 

Social Accounts section removed - you can now add a Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Youtube link under Settings > General

• Removed Facebook Page Calendars - This is because Facebook has stopped access to this page event API - it is not known when they will bring this back. If they do, we probably will too!

• Social Feed widget - some changes to widget setup


Also:

> Contact Form widget now allows you to prevent visitors from changing the topic of a form

> Fixed caching issue with people widget

> Theme submenu nav now aligns to right

> Bugs humanely squished here and there.

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Resource feature updates 2018.8.23

23 Aug 2018 Scott Wegener

Some of the works in the past week:

- There's now a Resource Widget, which shows a list of Resources of a particular Resource Group, or from all Resource Groups. Ordered alphabetically, by publish date or by most popular.

- also a Resource Featured Widget, which highlights just one Resource permanently, OR only the latest resource form a particular Resource Group

- Resource group page: if Resource only has one file version, the link text will be “Download” instead of the file name

- Resource Group page no longer shows title “Resources”

- Fixed bug where document_list/:id was redirecting to wrong URL

- more minor tweaks to Resources to come

https://support.adventist.place/category/99-resources

Other:

- Upgrades to Rails, Font Awesome and Bootstrap - (if you know what these three are... high five!)

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Internet Explorer and EDGE browser issue

20 Aug 2018 Scott Wegener

There is currently an issue for users of Internet Explore and Edge browsers in the Dashboard - particularly for trying to edit the Main Menu.

Please try another browser, such as:

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NEW FEATURES 2018.7.16

16 Aug 2018 Scott Wegener

This new release includes a major rework of how Document lists once worked, now called...

RESOURCES

• Document Lists renamed to Resource Groups

• View total number of downloads for a resource

• Add Documents and Website Links to a Resource

• Document Resources can have multiple download files - e.g. an image with multiple formats

• Website Link Resources allow you to have a link to a website. Adventist Place will automatically pull meta data from the website link such as a preview image, site name, site description to show on your site

• Resource descriptions can be written in an editor

• Resources can optionally have preview images

• A new Resource page for websites (/resources) shows your site visitors popular resources and recently updated resource groups.

• A new Resource Group page shows resources and highlights many of the features above.

• Resource Group resource listing in dashboard now has pagination, table sorting and search

• 'TrackEvent' added: This will track all downloads/views of content to help keep track of popularity. People who for example download the same resource several times in a short period will only count as 1 download. The popularity of content is recalculated daily based on the last 28 days of data.

• Resource downloads tracked using TrackEvent for popularity

• Vimeo and Youtube Videos played now use TrackEvent to track popularity and total plays on site


• Event times: Times picker now allows for 5 minute steps rather than 30 minute steps

• Fixed bug where when editing events the start time/end time may unexpectedly change


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Custom Domains CNAME connection

09 Aug 2018 Scott Wegener

For those using a custom domain (or wanting to) for their Adventist Place

We've added the ability to connect a custom domain to Adventist Place via CNAME without the original mandatory Cloudflare usage. 

However if using this new CNAME method, to get the domain working with and without the WWW you may need to use Cloudflare still, depending on the DNS forwarding options your provider has.

Instructions here: https://support.adventist.place/article/45-domains

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NEW FEATURES 2018.8.8

08 Aug 2018 Scott Wegener

Latest new features:

Blogging/Post section added (for news reports or recipes or theological thoughts or ...)

https://support.adventist.place/article/137-posts


Adjustable Widget margin padding below Widgets, (no more spacer widget)
NOTE: if you used the Spacer widget, it's been removed and may have altered your layout slightly.

https://support.adventist.place/article/84-arranging-widgets


Button Links can now be made in the Text Widget

https://support.adventist.place/article/135-buttons


Widgets reworked to be the same but subtly different, in preparing for allowing footer editing in the future

Default page templates will become available soon (allowing people to 'reinstall' some of the default content if they wish to.)

Page duplication is now possible.

Text Align options have been added to Text Widget


NEXT We're looking at the Social integration next, including cleaning up after Facebook's 'lockouts' of features that we were once permitted to access and getting that working better.

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NEW FEATURES 2018.7.10

10 Jul 2018 Daniel Lewis

Hey folks,

We've just released some new features we've been working on for Adventist Place. Here's a run down of what's included:

People Features:

• Add and manage people under Settings > People

• Feature people with a star. By default only featured people will show on the people widget

• Sort featured people

• People Widget (previously called Team Widget) now allows you to show featured people or create a custom list of people that can be ordered.

• Your pastor/leaders will still be automatically managed from Adventist Cloud and automatically featured. If your pastor/leader moves on to another entity they will be unfeatured and set as unmanaged meaning you can edit/delete them if you choose. You may choose not to delete them if you added them previously to podcast episodes as an author for example.

https://support.adventist.place/article/132-people-overview


Files: 

* Add a person to a document/image


Podcasts:

* Podcast episodes now use the person added to the document/mp3 instead of the credit name. If you have previously relied on the credit name, please add the person.

* Podcast page on website now shows the episodes summary and author/person

https://support.adventist.place/article/17-podcast-intro


URLs:

If you're website URL was previously pointing to a Simple Church website, we've now automatically set it to point to your Adventist Place site as your primary URL

https://support.adventist.place/article/45-domains


Bugs:

* Fixed bug preventing contact form topics from been created

* Fixed bug preventing reports from showing

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NEW FEATURES 2018.7.3

03 Jul 2018 Scott Wegener

Three of the more significant additions just released:

HEADDER LOGO

We've added a simple header logo to the theme which appears in desktop and mobile view. 

It will appear by default on your site from today, but can be turned on/off in the Theme & Layout page. It's colour can be adjusted to the corporate entity's colour (eg Orange for churches, Dark Blue for schools...) 

https://support.adventist.place/article/130-logo-on-off


SITE NAMES can also be up to 50 characters now too.

https://support.adventist.place/article/48-name-of-place


URL CONNECTION

You can now have your old [name].adventist.org.[country] web address as your primary address (not just a forward) and with SSL (https).
We'll probably get these made primary for you automatically.

https://support.adventist.place/article/45-domains

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NEW FEATURES 2018.6.7

07 Jun 2018 Scott Wegener

Some more recent updates:

Improved Link chooser for Main Menu, and the Text and Card Widgets.
The link chooser allows you to easily link to site pages, web addresses, create a mailto, or documents and have them open in a new tab if desired.

https://support.adventist.place/article/126-link-chooser


Stock photos in image chooser now include 'collections' to help you find types of images you may be looking for faster, but search will still be the most broad way to find Stock Images. We'll add more to these collections at some stage.

https://support.adventist.place/article/52-stock-images


Fixed bug where podcast episodes were not been correctly sorted

https://support.adventist.place/article/19-adding-episode-files

Fixed bug were changes to a church's pastor were not being synced with Adventist Place
Changes made to Adventist Cloud are automatically synced to Adventist Place within an hour

https://support.adventist.place/article/46-place-details


Added ability to change the Link and 'submit button' colour to match the official corporate colour of your entity type's logo. Done in the Themes area.

https://support.adventist.place/article/32-themes

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NEW FEATURES 2018.6.6

05 Jun 2018 Scott Wegener

Two quick features we just added:

Added invitation method to invite another member/admin to the site 

https://support.adventist.place/article/124-inviting-users 


Contact form now has optional 'topic' field which can be set and be sent to difference groups of emails, not all forms sent to all admins like before.

https://support.adventist.place/art…/125-contact-form-topics

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NEW FEATURES 2018.5.29

29 May 2018 Scott Wegener

New additions: 

Added a 'login' link in your website's footer. 

Added the ability to set a page's title and description for search engines.
For existing pages: edit a page, click the 3 dots up the top right of the page, and click settings.

https://support.adventist.place/article/80-editing-page-details

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Facebook Events Issue

28 May 2018 Scott Wegener

Facebook Events FYI: 

The recent Data Scandal involving Facebook (you've probably seen in the media) has meant Facebook has temporarily forced a blanket shutdown of some services they offered, which included one we were using to import events from your Facebook Page to your site. 

We have submitted a review to have our functionality approved again but until then everyone will have to enter events the old fashion way - manually.  Apologies.

https://support.adventist.place/article/92-adding-editing-events-manually

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UPDATE 2018.5.23

23 May 2018 Scott Wegener

- We've just created an Adventist Place site for all the old Simple Church 'pages', and notified anyone we had on record with a SC site just now.

- We will delete the old SC pages in the not to distant future.

- We're about to get the [name].adventist.org.[countrycode] names forwarding to the Adventist Place sites. (only a forward for now for tech reasons, but we're working on it)

- We'll start sending out articles to all the conferences now for soon publishing and next week we'll open up to general promotion of this service.

- We can still improve things in the dashboard but it's quite stable and will be good to get started with everyone who can benefit for this service. Thanks for your patience all!

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