According to our long-standing tradition, we are rolling out a mixed update that includes both features and bug fixes. This time it took us a bit longer to release version 4.8.2 although we planned to do it earlier. The delay was caused by the COVID-19 Pandemic that affected the entire world.
As always, we will start with new features. We believe you will like them too because some of them are important and much wanted.
Force Canonical Tag
Using the canonical tag for pages is very important for SEO and recently it has become a must-have. Following the Google recommendations, we have added a new setting that allows you to enable the canonical tag for all the pages of the site. Now the tag is enabled for the pagination pages by default. After exploring popular classified portals including such popular websites as Zillow, Airbnb and other it turned out that the canonical tag is used for all the pages including the home one where the tag provides a link to the page itself. The setting allows you to avoid duplicates due to various links to the page.
We looked up official SEO manuals but they say nothing about such techniques. For this reason, we have made the setting optional allowing you to choose if you want to enable the tag for all the pages or just for the pagination ones.
Output Image Format & WebP
As you know when users load their pictures the script validates, resizes, and crops them. The new option allows you to select a format to which all the images uploaded will be converted and stored on the server. The script supports the following formats – JPG, PNG, and WebP.
We would like to bring your attention to the WebP format that was specifically developed for the WEB. That is, storing images in the WebP format reduces the size of files up to 40%, which contributes to higher load speed on the user side. The format is more favored by search engines. Google Speed Insights strongly recommends using the format for improving the LCP (Largest Contentful Paint) metric to keep your search positions.
Updated Statistics Box
We decided to improve the appearance and data output of the Stats Box because it looked quite outdated and did not offer the necessary information to users. This is the only visual change made in the update and now the stats box looks nothing like it did before. We reworked the box and left only the most needed information in it. Now the box stretches across the full width of the template looking and acting as an integral part of the design.
Reworked Watermark Functionality
We have added a number of new features to the watermarking module that will give you freedom when positioning the watermark on pictures, which will allow you to make pictures on your site look unique.
Now you can place a watermark anywhere on pictures to make sure it cannot be Photoshopped out, and even tile the watermark over images. The new settings allow you to manage the opacity level and rotation angle. We also added a few settings to the text mode that allow to you manage text color, and font size.
Update to Bootstrap 4.0
Trying to make full use of the Bootstrap framework, we updated it to version 4.0. We used only grid styles from the previous Bootstrap versions. We have added more basic groups, typography, flex styles, adaptive utility, and position styles from the new version. The Bootstrap update allowed us to get rid of custom and duplicate styles in templates and plugins, which inevitably led to reducing CSS file size and in some cases totally get rid of the style files. The update is likely to contribute to better LCP.
These are major features that we have added; below you may find a list of bug fixes and smaller features.
Features & Improvements
- The ‘Force canonical tag’ option added
- An ability for the administrator to select the output image format added
- Support for WebP image format added
- Support for PHP 7.4 added
- The Bootstrap library used in our classified themes updated to version 4.0
- Stats box on the home page reworked
- Watermark functionality reworked and improved
- Metadata functionality for user accounts in back end reworked and improved
- The ability to restrict locations by a selected country for the Geo services added
- An email notification about expiring membership plan added
- Ability to add a box to the sidebar on the home page in the Wide and Flatty classified themes restored
- Wrong width issue when watching video fixed
- Category issue in the search on ‘My Listings’ page fixed
- Category issue in the OLX theme fixed
- Unremovable search form issue after removing a listing type fixed
- An error when using the alphabetic search for accounts fixed
- Wrong links to listings on seller pages that run on subdomains fixed
- Messenger issue when users contact the administrator fixed
- Content conflict in categories of different listing types with identical paths fixed
- Listing issue on the maps when running on subdomains fixed
- Arabic numeral issues in the price field fixed
- An issue when searching for listings on the ‘Search on Map’ page fixed
- Automatic rotation issue after uploading images with a smartphone fixed
- A bug when visiting the Add a Listing page for the first time fixed
- A bug on the Add a Listing page with the only free package available fixed
- Active session issue on different devices after logging out fixed
- Missing category issue in listing names fixed
- An error when removing account with listings with the enabled Trash box fixed
- Errors in back end after importing a new language fixed
- An error when removing language phrases after the language reimport fixed
- Individual page field issue on the profile page fixed
- Notification language issue after selecting a preferable language fixed
- YouTube replacement issue when using membership plans fixed
- Currency selection issue in the Craigslist classified theme fixed
- A bug that prevented from downloading/updating plugins in back end fixed
- Missing phrase issue in messages sent with Cron fixed
- Wrong listing count issue on the listing type and category pages fixed
- Wrong category URLs of the categories in the general classified themes fixed
- Tour issue on the maps fixed
- Back end login issue fixed
- YouTube upload issue fixed
- Listing view counter reworked and improved
- The ‘Add an Alert’ functionality reworked
- Protection against uncontrollable removal of files from the server added
- The ability to manage language format from in back end improved
- All the pre-installed plugins updated to the latest versions
- The ability to translate plugin names and description to other languages added to back end