Joomla SEO Performance by Simon Kloostra Simon Kloostra’s book, Joomla! 3 SEO and Performance, is a very focused, short book that is chock full of useful tips and links to resources that Joomla! website developers and administrators may not be aware of. As a long-time Joomla! user and founding member of the Northern Virginia Joomla! Users Group, I find that this book fills a gap on my Joomla! bookshelf.
Simon Kloostra (see his site at is clearly an authority on Joomla! and SEO, but he avoids unnecessary jargon, provides context, and explains SEO in a clear and pleasant style. As of the date of this review, the book is quite current, which is usually a challenge with books. It includes evaluations of and recommendations for dozens of resources to consider for your toolkit.
One frequent question in user group meetings is which commercial template provider is best. This book does get specific and list well-regarded template providers, and also delves into the SEO considerations of template design. This which gives the site developers something more to consider in making their template selection or development decisions.
Perhaps even more valuable is his coverage of ways to maximize Joomla! performance. We have all seen sites that are slower than they need to be; this book explains what to do about it and provides a clear explanation of caching options and ways to optimize both css and javascript files.
Even those with good backgrounds in SEO and Joomla! will find additional insights that will justify their investment in buying and reading this book.



Published in Joomla News
Saturday, 14 March 2015 03:23

Nice Benefits of Joomla! 3.4

Hey, folks, Joomla! 3.4 has front-end module editing and "I am not a Robot" recaptcha!

These are two things among many that I know my customers will enjoy.

Read all about it!

I will expound on it more when I have a few minutes!   Just didn't want to tive the impression that I'm napping!

Published in Joomla News
Thursday, 07 November 2013 23:53

Joomla! 3.2 Adds Great New Features

Joomla! LogoJoomla! 3.2  was released November 6, 2013. Key new features include:

  • Version Control - Enables a Joomla administrator to revert to an older version of content on a website and compare side-by-side to see what changes have been made.
  • Rapid Application Development (RAD) - RAD simplifies the process for a developer to write their own Joomla extensions; apps that enhance a Joomla site like calendars, videos or polls
  • Extension Finder - This simplifies the process of searching for and installing Joomla extensions by allowing users to do all that directly from within their admin view with just a few clicks. The previous processes included separate steps to first search for and download extensions to a desktop, and then log in to the Joomla admin view and install those extensions.
  • Bcrypt - A strong encryption method that scrambles passwords stored in a Joomla website's database.
  • Two-factor Authentication - In order for a change to be made to a Joomla website, there can be an optional requirement for a user to fill out another form of authentication (other than a username/password). Two-factor authentication can be anything like entering an auto-generated code that is texted to a person's mobile phone.
  • User Interface Improvements - The new Joomla 3.2 administration interface is more streamlined and task-focused.
  • Iimproved template manager
  • Multi-lingual site installer,
  • Improved WYSIWYG editor
  • Micro-data semantics library
  • HTML form fields and attributes.

We will discuss Joomla! 3.2 at our November 20, 2013 Northern Virginia Joomla! Users Group Meeting. See the event on Meetup.

In addition to the press releases all around the web, here is Tim Plummer's briefing on the new features:


Published in Joomla News
Tuesday, 05 November 2013 15:42

Alliance for Full Participation


The Alliance for Full Participation, a nonprofit collabortion of disability organizations, required a website that provided a forum for collaboration among State Team leaders as well as individual members, including a directory of State Teams and their plans.

The site was constructed in Joomla!, incorporating Kunena Forum, Community Builder, and Sobi directory. It also shares success stories of employment for people with disabilities.

Unfortunately, the Alliance was disbanded in 2014 and so we have removed the website.

Published in Website Portfolio
Tuesday, 05 November 2013 15:42

Talltree South Condominium Association


Talltree South, an award-winning condo community association, provides its owners and tenants handbook, including rules and regulations,in searchable form via its website. Newsletters, e-mail and e-mail-to-text notices, and a window to its Google calendar are also provided to enhance communication with owners and tenants.

Ursa Major constructed the site in Joomla! 1.5 and later upgraded it to 2.5.  Plans are to update its look in the coming year.

Published in Website Portfolio
Tuesday, 05 November 2013 15:41

JMA Solutions


JMA Solutions, an award-winning government contractor, wanted a site that highlighted their corporate capabilities and awards, advertised their job openings, and provided internal forms and documents for employees.

Ursa Major provided quick turn-around on a conversion from a Cold Fusion-based website, trained the internal site administrators, and later upgraded the site from Joomla! 1.5 to 2.5.

More recently, Ursa Major led an internal Website Refresh group at JMA Solutions to design and develop a new website using Joomla! 3, with fresh content and a more dynamic approach than was possible with the prior quick implementation.

Published in Website Portfolio
Tuesday, 05 November 2013 15:40

Northern Virginia Association of Realtors


The Northern Virginia Association of REALTORS ® (NVAR)'s updated website with its new brand image and colors is now live. 

Ursa Major Consulting was engaged to provide Joomla! expertise in supporting the transition.

A usability study and brand design was done by WM Design Group. NVAR had experienced some lingering difficulties in the upgrade of the site from Joomla! 1.5.  We are happy to support NVAR. The site works hand-in-glove with the NVAR's store and membership management solution.

Published in Website Portfolio
Tuesday, 05 July 2011 17:36

Compliments for Guild Site

I recently completed and went live with the new website for the Guild of Professional Tour Guides of Washington, DC, at
Yesterday, Joe Steinbock of the Guild passed on the following compliment to me and Shirley Timashev of the Guild:
I join everyone in the Guild in thanking you for the new web site.  The following unsolicited compliment
came today from a professional designer I met at the Destination DC "speed networking" event.
Best wishes,
Joe Steinbock
Hi Joe!
Did you just redo your website?  It looks great! Whoever did it, did a really great job.
Hope you're having a great week.
Samantha Bruck
Top Shelf Design
define. create. deliver.
2626 N. Pershing Dr. #2
Arlington, VA 22201
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Published in Ursa Major News
Wednesday, 14 December 2011 17:33

Met the Deadline - New Website for JMA Solutions

We recently had the opportunity to create a new Joomla! website for JMA Solutions.  Their prior website had been a Cold Fusion site (yes, I've done that in the past), but their hosting provider was pulling the plug on Cold Fusion.

Within two weeks, and over the Thanksgiving holiday, the new website was up and running. It incorporates both enhanced information on the company and the awards they've won, and an employee portal with internal policies, forms, calendar, and other features.

Everyone was very pleased with the new site, which is at

Published in Ursa Major News
Saturday, 26 October 2013 17:08

NVAR Updated Website is Live!

The Northern Virginia Association of REALTORS ® (NVAR) updated website with a new brand image and colors is now live.  Ursa Major Consulting was engaged to provide Joomla! expertise in supporting the transition. A usability study and brand design was done by WM Design Group. NVAR had experienced some lingering difficulties in the upgrade of the site from Joomla! 1.5.  We are happy to support NVAR.



Published in Ursa Major News
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