The Importance Of Using Naming Conventions In SER!

In this post I will be going over how using simple naming conventions in tools such as GSA Search Engine Ranker can help save you time when completing a number of tasks as well as servicing the toolset. I decided to type this post up due to recently seeing two SER users manually selecting projects rather and wasting a whole bunch of time.

Let’s start with an example, say you have 99 active projects running in your SER install consisting of 33 campaigns that are all three tiers each (tier one and two contextual and tier three non-contextual). One day you realize that your tier one projects are not reverifying their links due you forgetting to tick the reverify settings in the projects when you created them, this means that your tier two projects are building links to these tier one targets that maybe dead links. Your tier three projects are building links to these tier two links that are pointing to dead targets resulting in a massive amount of system resources being wasted.

The next day, for whatever reason your catch-all email provider emails you and informs you that there is a problem with their system and the catch-alls you have been issued with will stop working within the hour and they provide you with new catch-all email paths.

The day after that, you remember the autogenerated content spins in your tier one and two projects have been loaded into the tool for over a month and you decide to refresh the content in them.

Without the use of naming conventions, you would have to manually go through your projects and select the relevant ones you wish to edit before being able to correct the problem. As you can imagine, this wastes a whole bunch of time, not to mention the time you may have to spend doing this for the many other tasks that require bulk project editing!

What Are Naming Conventions?

A quick and easy way to minimize the time required for these tasks is to use a simple naming convention on your projects to easily identify them by tier or by keyword as shown in the screenshot below.

Using naming conventions in GSA Search Engine Ranker.

I have the projects saved as a backup so I can quickly and easily restore a fresh set as and when I require them and have the projects in the above screenshot quickly generated and ready to go. It follows a simple naming convention of T1, T2 or T3 to display the tier of the project with SER C to display a contextual project and SER N to display a non-contextual project.

Once the projects have been restored I then use the navigation in the below screenshot to add the campaign keyword to the end of the projects to enable me to select all projects in that campaign quickly if required.

Mass project rename in GSA Search Engine Ranker.

As we want to add the keyword to the end of the project name we select suffix on the popup box that appears when completing the above navigation as shown in the screenshot below.

Renaming a projects suffix in GSA Search Engine Ranker.

For this example, I will be using the term “keyword” as the target keyword for the campaign so once the suffix option in the screenshot above has been selected I add the term ” keyword” to the popup box that appears while remembering the space before the keyword to leave a gap between the project names.

After completing the above steps our projects should look a little something like the screenshot below.

You can get as elaborate as required with the projects as shown in the screenshot below.

The above screenshot has some new naming conventions added to meet my requirements such as M Web 2 for manual web 2.0’s and A Web 2 for automated web 2.0’s. I also sometimes use naming conventions such as M SB for manual social bookmarks or M Profile for manual profiles. I then use the method I explain in this post to host these externally created URLs in SER to make in easy to manage my projects.

How To Select Project Via Naming Conventions

It is quick and easy to select projects using any of the naming conventions you decide to implement, simply complete the navigation in the screenshot below.

Selecting projects by mask in GSA Search Engine Ranker.

When completed, the popup box in the screenshot below will open and you add the required naming convention to it and all relevant projects will be selected.

The above example will then automatically select all tier two projects on that particular SER install allowing the user to do any required bulk project changes without the need to manually go through all of the projects selecting them one by one.

I hope this post has helped some of my readers realize that they are able to implement small, quick and easy things like this to help them save time when working with large numbers of projects within the tool.


MBA candidate at @tuckschool of business at dartmouth. lover of huskies, the ocean & boston sports. hoya saxa!