Are you, or have you, moved to Jadu CMS for your website and need some SEO help?

Jadu is a web platform primarily used by local government, and higher education organisations (colleges and universities) in a number of countries. Clients include Birmingham City Council, Fordham University (New York), Southampton City Council, and Canterbury City Council.

Whilst Jadu is a specialist platform for these organisations, it is not SEO friendly out of the box, and a lot of Jadu literature around SEO is… lacking. There are alternative platforms for higher education organisations that will perform better in SEO (out of the box), and allow greater flexibility than Jadu.

Jadu SEO Specialist

Having worked with clients using the Jadu platform, from the initial build specification stage to post launch, I’m well versed in the issues that the platform has and how they can be resolved to best suit your organisation — and achieve organic search success.

Whilst a lot of SEO best practice and theory can be applied across multiple platforms, knowing the limitations of Jadu already saves time (and money) in making recommendations and going through the process of what can and can’t be done (in realistic terms).

If you’d like to speak to me about your Jadu SEO, please contact me.

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Jadu SEO Literature

As mentioned previously, Jadu’s documentation on SEO is a little out of date, for example in the Continuum support manual, it recommends that:

you should set basic Metadata properties; Keywords and Description for improved Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

As we know, the meta description doesn’t actually affect rankings (it can affect click-through rates, but Google often chooses to override it anyway), and meta keywords worked… in 2007.

Jadu doesn’t reference SEO a lot in its documentation, and for the most part, is geared towards council websites who only need to rank for brand, or brand + [council service] queries.

Jadu Platform Reviews

From reviewing a number of third-party review sites, the common feedback also aligns with some of the technical issues we see with Jadu.

For example, this review was posted to TrustRadius by someone from a higher education facility:

Jadu CMS is not currently geared toward the academic side, but more of the business/government types of organisations. Things can be tweaked to suit your needs, but sometimes there are limitations. The programmers are very helpful in assisting with that. If you have some in house programmers, and you can get developer training, they will be able to program their own custom widgets to use on your website. We did not have programmers but managed to create a few simple widgets.

Like with anything, with development it can be tailored to meet your needs. Jadu is PHP based, and it’s architecture is cross-platform, and can be run in Windows on the .Net framework, Solaris, or Linux. This means developers who are comfortable in making amends to the codebase shouldn’t be too hard to find.

We recommend that you do this with an SEO specialist, so that you can ensure the Jadu website meets the needs of both users and search engines, without having to revisit development or incur additional costs later down the line.

Jadu Positives & Negatives

The below list of pros and cons for Jadu have been taken from genuine reviews (of verified users) from independent, third-party review websites.

Positives

  • The interface to edit content is simple and resembles word processing programs with its editing abilities.
  • If you do not have a separate form creation program/application, Jadu has its own form module.
  • The Jadu team we worked with kept constant communication with us throughout the different stages of switching to a new CMS.
  • Jadu has a great support website that will allow you to search problems, submit your own, and receive responses from the support team.

So the CMS is easy to use, and they have a good support network in place.

Negatives

  • Does not provide advanced controls and looks as well as some competitors
  • Menus to add media content are litigious and require many clicks
  • Bugs. We seem to run in to random bugs quite often and find it odd that nobody else has reported them yet. More extensive testing might be helpful before releasing versions/patches.
  • Jadu has one of the worst database setups I have ever used. If you want to grab content that needs at least 2 categories you are out of luck.

So bugs, and limitations on advanced controls – suitable for very simple information relaying websites, like councils.

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Are you interested in improving the performance of your Jadu website in organic search? Talk to me today about how we can make that happen.