I have been using Pretty Link Pro, which is a WordPress Plugin, for a long time and it has definitely generated a lot of traffic for this site. Recently I noticed that Pretty link was no longer displaying the Social Media bar near the bottom of each post. This “social media” bar displays links to popular social media sites such as Facebook, Linkedin, Digg, Twitter, Reddit, Technorati, StumbleUpon, etc. and automatically inserts a link back to the post with the idea that if the content is easy for people to share they will do so.
**UPDATE** Please read this update article to the issue described below.
What Does The Pretty Link Pro Social Media Bar Look Like:
As you can see there are a bunch of different images or buttons which you can select in the Pretty Link Pro admin. Anyhow recently the bar was only displaying on my homepage and I could not figure out why. Eventually I started looking at various plugins to see which onces might affect every post and eventually I came across Greg’s High Performance SEO plugin for WordPress. After analyzing the code of the High Performance SEO plugin I was able to locate the issue which happened to be with the meta description that was being generated by the HP SEO plugin. The High Performance SEO plugin for WordPress does a great job of generating meta descriptions, titles, etc. which definitely assists with Google rankings, so I did not want to disable this plugin. The problem is the Pretty Link Pro plugin for WordPress generates a lot of traffic as well so I couldn’t disable that plugin either. Without wanting to spend to much time looking at the issue I decided to modify the PHP code of Greg’s High Performance SEO WordPress plugin which I explain in more detail below.
I was hoping I could find a setting in Greg’s High Performance SEO WordPress plugin’s admin interface that would statically assign a description which would have solved the issue. Basically there is a conflict with a function called head_desc in Greg’s High Performance SEO. It was also possible without much effort to statically assign a specific meta description to each post however that would not be the best idea for search engine rankings. Instead I decided to use a variable for the meta description that is generated within the HP SEO plugin and I decided that the post title would be the best idea. The post title changes with every post and would provide a meta description with content related to the post which in the end would be the best solution for SEO ranking.
Modify Greg’s High Performance SEO WordPress Plugin Code To Work With Pretty Link Pro:
You will need to either download the file that is about to be mentioned via FTP or connect to your server using a terminal via SSH. Once you decide how you are going to modify the file visit the below path to modify the ghpseo-writing.php file and statically assign the post title as the meta description for each post. The path to the file from the WordPress root is noted below.
**Note: Please note that this is accurate with version 1.5 of Greg’s High Performance SEO plugin for WordPress and I can neither confirm or deny that it works on previous or later versions of this plugin.
Path To ghpseo-writing.php From WordPress Root Directory:
First backup the ghpseo-writing.php file before you make any changes so you can restore it if you accidentally make an error. Now open the ghpseo-writing.php in your favorite text editor no matter if you decided to download the file via FTP to edit on your local PC or you are making the changes directly on the server. On line 475 of the ghpseo-writing.php file you will see the “$description” variable which is what we are going to modify. Below I display what the variable looks like before you have changed anything and what it should look like once you have edited the value of the variable and saved the PHP file.
HP SEO Plugin ghpseo-writing.php Before Edit:
$description = $this->get_meta_clean($tocheck,'alternative_description', true);
HP SEO Plugin ghpseo-writing.php After Edit:
//$description = $this->get_meta_clean($tocheck,'alternative_description', true); $description = strip_tags($post->post_title);
As you can see above instead of deleting the old variable content I always comment it out which can be done in PHP by adding to forward slashes in front of the code. As you can see we added the post_title which will dynamically be generated when the page is rendered. This may seem fairly heavy in terms of processing for each page that is generated when someone views your site however if you are not using a plugin like WP Super Cache for WordPress you should be and it will cache the page until it is modified or the cache becomes expired.
Anyhow you can now view articles and see that the Pretty Link Social Media Bar is displaying properly gain. Below are two images that show first what my page looked like without the Social Media Bar and second what the page looks like now that Pretty Link Pro Social Media Bar is displaying properly.
Example Of Pretty Link Social Media Bar Not Displaying:
Example Of Pretty Link Social Media Bar Displaying After Fixing HP SEO Plugin Code: