URL management

URLs identify the location of resources on a website by specifying both the domain name and the specific path to an asset. You set the domain at the site level when you create the site. At the site level, you can also specify both vanity URLs and wildcard URLs. At the asset level, you can manage the path.

Asset-Level URL management

You set the path part of the URL in the URLs widget, which appears in the content edit pages of an asset. You can set the following types of URLs in the URLs widget.

Types of URLs
Type of URL Description
Permalink Permanent link that never expires. Another asset on your site cannot have the same permalink. Do not change permalinks after the initial publishing of content. If you want to change a URL, add an alias to the asset, or add a redirect to the new asset that is replacing the old asset. See Permalinks for assets for additional information.
Alias An alternative link to the asset. You can delete the alias from an asset and use it on another asset.
Redirect (Permanent) URL from which browsers are permanently redirected. Browsers redirect to the asset with the permalink. For example, if the permalink is /ice-cream-toppings, and you had a link to a previous article /toppings, then you would set /toppings as the redirect URL. Browsers would then redirect from /toppings to /ice-cream-toppings. See Redirect URLs for assets for additional information. A permanent redirect causes the server to send an HTTP status code 301 to the browser. It also instructs search engines to replace the older permalink in their listings with the new permalink.
Redirect (Temporary) A temporary redirect is similar to a permanent redirect, but a temporary redirect causes the server to send an HTTP status code 307 to the browser. It also instructs search engines to temporarily replace the older URL in their listings with the new permalink. However, the search engines continue to scan the site at the old permalink and will deliver that page after you delete the temporary redirect. See Redirect URLs for assets for additional information.

Publishing to multiple sites

In a multi-site environment, the URLs widget includes a drop-down list option to select a site. Brightspot publishes the asset to the site set in this option using the URL you provide.

../../../_images/urls-multisite-dropdown.png

As shown in the following example, you can publish an asset to multiple sites with the URLs widget. If you set Global, Brightspot publishes to all sites.

../../../_images/urls-multisite-1.png

Publishes to Stargazers site only

../../../_images/urls-multisite-2.png

Publishes to Stargazers and Asteroid Hunters sites

../../../_images/urls-multisite-global.png

Publishes to all sites

When publishing to multiple sites, you can use the same permalink across multiple sites because each site has a different domain name. In the above example, a single permalink is set, /extraterrestrials, for both Asteroid Hunters and Stargazers. The resulting fully qualified URLs are unique because of the sites’ different domain names.

Fully qualified URLs with the same permalinks
Site Fully qualified URL
Asteroid Hunters http://www.asteroidhunters.com/extraterrestrials
Stargazers http://www.stargazers.com/extraterrestrials

Alternatively, you can set site-specific permalinks on an asset. In the following example, there are different permalinks for the Asteroid Hunters site and Stargazers site.

../../../_images/urls-widget-multi-permalinks.png
Fully qualified URLs with different permalinks
Site Fully qualified URL
Asteroid Hunters http://www.aseroidhunters.com/extraterrestrials
Stargazers http://www.stargazers.com/outer-space-creatures

Note

An asset that can be published to multiple sites is not automatically accessible in Brightspot to editors working in those sites. For example, in the URLs widget, an asset can have a URL for the Stargazers site, but in the Sites widget, the Stargazers site can be denied access to the asset. For more information, see Assigning permissions to content on multiple sites.

Redirect URLs for assets

Redirects protect against web links that reference obsoleted (moved, deleted, or consolidated) content on your site. Redirect URLs map source links to target links, where source links are URLs to obsoleted assets, and target links are URLs to new, replacement assets. Redirects can be either permanent (301 redirects) or temporary (307 redirects).

You can add redirect URLs at the asset level; in the content edit page of a target asset, map source permalinks for one or more obsolete assets to the target permalink.

Administrators are also able to redirect URLs at the site level using either vanity URLs or wildcard URLs.

A prerequisite for setting a redirect URL is that the URL itself no longer exist on the obsolete asset. This is accomplished in one of the following ways:

Deleting URLs for assets

To delete a URL:

  1. Search for and open the item in the content edit page.
  2. In the URLs widget, click remove corresponding to the URL that you want to delete.
  3. In the Editorial toolbar, save or publish the asset.

Vanity URL redirects

A vanity URL is a long URL that has been converted into a shorter, more human readable URL to make it easier for potential site visitors to find it and remember it. The local URL is the easy-to-remember address and the destination URL is the URL for the content. You can also specify the handling of query strings.

For example, Acme company has a new children’s toy called a Gidget that has gone viral so they create a vanity URL redirect with the local URL set to http://www.acme.com/gidget that redirects to the destination URL of http://www.acme.com/category/product/ID-980-145-gidget.

The Vanity URL Redirects module can also be used to direct visitors from an obsolete resource to a new destination. The local URL is the obsolete resource. You will receive an error message if you set the local URL that has not been deleted from the obsolete asset that it references.

Vanity URL Redirects is a separate module than wildcard URL redirects to allow for separate permission controls. Vanity URL redirects does not support wildcards (*) in the local URL.

To add redirect vanity URLs:

  1. From the Navigation Menu, select Admin > Vanity URL Redirects. The Search Vanity URL Redirect widget appears.

  2. Click New Vanity URL Redirect on the bottom left. The New Vanity URL Redirect edit content page appears.

    ../../../_images/vanity_url_redirects_new.png
  3. Set the URL options using the information in the table below.

    Field Description
    Name Name describing the purpose of the redirect
    Local Urls Vanity URL
    Destination URL with the content to display
    Temporary

    If set, the server sends an HTTP 302 temporary redirect to the browser; otherwise, it sends a 301 permanent redirect.

    A temporary redirect instructs search engines to temporarily replace the older URL in their listings with the new one. However, the search engines continue to scan the site at the old URL and will deliver that page after you delete the temporary redirect.

  4. Set the Query String option if applicable. The options are: Ignore, Modify, or Preserve. For Modify, there are additional options for specifying the keys to keep.

  5. In multi-site environments, select an Owner and Access in the Sites widget.

  6. In the Editorial toolbar, save or publish the new redirect.

Wildcard URLs and wildcard URL redirects

A wildcard URL is a partial URL with asterisks, which serve as placeholders for additional path segments that are calculated by the Brightspot backend, or by another application that is integrated with Brightspot. For example, you could set a wildcard URL on a Gallery page, from which users can select and view videos from within the page. When a user selects a particular video, identified by a unique number, Brightspot uses the number to calculate the specific URL of the Gallery page with the embedded video.

A wildcard URL takes one of the following forms: <examplePath>/* or <examplePath>/** where:

  • <examplePath> is the starting path of the URL, for example, gallery/videos.
  • <examplePath>/* indicates that <examplePath> can be followed by no more than one path segment, for example, /gallery/videos/15.
  • <examplePath>/** indicates that <examplePath> can be followed by multiple path segments, for example, /gallery/videos/hockeyclips/15.

Brightspot supports wildcard URLs in cases where you do not want to set a specific URL on an asset. In some cases, you may need to work with a Brightspot developer in defining wildcard URLs. Carefully plan your use of wildcard URLs to achieve the desired effect.

Brightspot also supports wildcards for redirects at the site-level. Wildcard redirect functionality is in its own module to support separate permissions.

A typical use for wildcard redirects is to support migration efforts to a new site without the risk of 404 errors. For example, if your company is moving to a new platform for blogs and retiring all the existing blog content, you could create a wildcard redirect from <www.company.com/blog/*> to <www.company.com/new-blog> to ensure that any visitors to the old blog still have access to your blog.

In addition to wildcard matches, the wildcard URL redirects module also supports matched path segment transfer, query string white-listing, and query string additions.

For example, you can redirect visitors from a zoo site that accepted donations to a wildlife refuge site that still accepts donations but also has extra ads as shown in the example below.

../../../_images/wildcard_url_redirects_example.png

Per the example, URLs will redirect as follows:

  • /zoo/why redirects to /refuge/why?ads=extra
  • /zoo/how?admin=true redirects to /refuge/how?ads=extra
  • /zoo/acme/flob?donation=5dollars redirects to /refuge/acme/flob?donation=5dollars&ads=extra

To add redirect URLs using wildcards:

  1. From the Navigation Menu, select Admin > Wildcard Redirects. The Search Wildcard Redirect widget appears.

  2. Click New Wildcard Redirect on the bottom left. The New Wildcard Redirect edit content page appears.

    ../../../_images/wildcard_url_redirects_new.png
  3. Set the URL options using the information in the table below.

    Field Description
    Name Name describing the purpose of the redirect.
    Local Urls URL for retired content
    Destination URL with the content to display
    Temporary If set, the server sends an HTTP 302 temporary redirect to the browser; otherwise, it sends a 301 permanent redirect. A temporary redirect instructs search engines to temporarily replace the older URL in their listings with the new one. However, the search engines continue to scan the site at the old URL and will deliver that page after you delete the temporary redirect.
  4. Set the Query String option if applicable. The options are: Ignore, Modify, or Preserve. For Modify, there are additional options for specifying the keys to keep.

  5. To transfer any matched path segments, turn on Transfer Matched Segments. The local URLs must contain wildcards for this setting to take effect.

  6. In multi-site environments, select an Owner and Access in the Sites widget.

  7. In the Editorial toolbar, save or publish the new redirect.