Hello Happy Site Owners and Webmasters!
Tips this week include:
- Best free caching and optimization plugins for 2020 case study released
- A fix for inLinkz updating failed error
- Updates to the Gutenberg Reusable Templates tutorial
- Putting the power of a village to work for you
- 2 DIY SEO workshops this week on keywords and ranking
- e-Junkie offering a free year on their platform for selling digital goods
- Gradients coming to more Gutenberg blocks
- The new Gutenberg choices coming soon that I don’t like
- A roadmap for WordPress in 2020
- How Gutenberg will change everything about theme creation
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Who I Help
All tips, advice, and suggestions in this, and all BlogAid posts and tutorials, are intended to empower DIY site owners who are not on hosting that is restrictive in what you can and can’t do with your site and hosting setup.
I’m so happy to have spent another week with a normal client load.
I’m getting caught up on backlog of tasks for BlogAid. And I even got to spend a little time in my woodshop.
Part of that backlog resulted in putting the power of the village to work by meeting with my clients and course members and creating two new posts plus a tutorial update for you.
I am beyond thrilled to share with you the results of my deep case study on the best free caching and optimization plugins!!!
I released the full case study to my Webmaster Training folks last week and I’m tickled pink with the way the public post turned out.
And I want to send a huge thank you to Paula Gregorowicz of the Paula G Company for her help with figuring out the best layout for the data on spreadsheets so I could make all those nice graphs you see in the posts.
That changed everything about how I calculated the winners with ease too. She showed me how to let the spreadsheets do all of the work.
They have a new plugin that uses shortcode to get around the security wire that was being tripped by inserting executable js code.
I want to send a huge thank you to Beverly Roderick of Across the Boulevard for her month-long help in testing and finding this plugin that resolved the issue.
Reusable Blocks and Templates are one of the most powerful features of the Gutenberg editor. They allow you to make a complex block or page template and insert it into any post or page anywhere you like.
Well, there’s a bug with them that centers around the new Buttons block.
And another issue about how you create them, as the Add New button causes a draft page that you can’t delete.
I’ve been working closely with the Gutenberg devs on these issues.
I believe we got the Buttons block one figured out, or at least a workaround for now.
But it will take a while for them to deal with how that ghost draft page thing gets created.
I want to send a huge thank you to Chas Greener of Chas’ Crazy Creations for bringing these issues to my attention and all of the time she has donated in live sessions to help test it.
I have updated the affected Gutenberg Ninja course tutorials for you.
Power of the village
I help them, they help me, and that helps all of us.
For my site audit clients, we also delve into things outside of our sites, like best ways to use Pinterest and Instagram.
And my Webmasters alert us all to behind the scenes news and issues, plus we all support each other from our different areas of expertise, like Paula helping me with those spreadsheets.
It’s definitely a win-win-win for all of us.
I hope you’ll consider joining us and put the power of the village to work for you too.
Last week I was delighted to return to our live DIY SEO workshops to do Part 1 of the Keywords workshop.
This Tuesday we’ll do Part 2 and dive into keyword research.
And then Thursday we’ll do our Ranking Factors workshop.
Next week we’ll have our brand new workshop on creating a Content Silo. The Category and Tags workshop was moved into that one as well.
And then our first workshop in May is on Special Formatting to get your posts as high up on page 1 of Google as possible.
And then for the rest of the spring we’ll do our deep dive series of workshops into on-page SEO, content audit, and content revamp.
What you’ll learn in that series will keep you busy for the rest of the year, guaranteed!!!
So, it’s never too late to join us as replays of the previous workshops are available.
That’s all the news from around here. Let’s dive into this week’s tips.
With the downturn in ad revenue, many bloggers are now getting serious about diversifying their revenue streams.
That includes creating downloadables for sale.
If you’re looking for a place to sell them, e-Junkie is offering a free year of their service to sell digital goods.
I believe you can hook it up to PayPal pretty easily too.
So, definitely an offer to check into.
In my post and video tour of What’s New in WordPress 5.4 I was tickled to show you the new gradient backgrounds that were added to a few blocks.
Well, the Gute devs are expanding that feature!!
Gradient backgrounds are coming to group, columns, and media & text blocks.
This is fantastic for creating eye-catching optins.
If you’re in my Gutenberg Ninja course, you’ve already seen specialty block suite plugins that give you way more styling options for these blocks. And I’m betting they will always outpace the styling options that are native to Gutenberg, so don’t worry about needing to switch.
But I’m also betting those plugins will add this new gradient functionality based on the native support when it rolls into the core WP code. And I’m betting that will be with the release of WP 5.5 in August.
So, keep what you’ve got for now and I’ll be updating the tutorials as needed.
More Gutenberg Choices Coming
The Gutenberg plugin is a beta so folks can test the latest functions and features in the Gutenberg editor. But they may not be stable enough to roll into the WP core code yet.
They’ve added a couple of new features that I’m not too happy about.
Headings have font choice sizes and line spacing for headings and paragraphs.
This is not good and should be controlled by the theme.
There are also 3 new block patterns, which I think will be useful:
- Hero Two Columns: Displays a group that encloses an italic paragraph, a heading, and two columns of text.
- Numbered Features: Displays several groups of columns with a number on the left and text on the right.
- It’s Time: Outputs a paragraph, two columns, and a large paragraph that reads “it’s time.”
The nice folks at WPTavern have put together a post with highlights of what we can expect to see coming in WordPress for the rest of this year.
Here’s the projected release schedule.
WordPress 5.5 is expected to release in August. It will bring:
- More Gutenberg feature updates
- Lazy load – we’ll still use the one in our premium caching plugin
WordPress 5.6 is expected in December and it will be huge.
They intend to include:
- Auto updates for everything – not just major releases
- Xml sitemap generator – will see how Yoast SEO reacts to this
- Full site design and theme editing
Gutenberg will change everything about theme creation
Now that last one is very ambitious to get it in this year.
But then, some themes are already running well ahead with this, like Astra, which is the one I used for most all of the examples in the 8 Pages You Can Create with Gutenberg in 15 Minutes.
But, that change is coming and it will revolutionize theme development.
In fact, it was the primary topic of discussion in the March Genesis Shapers meeting.
Genesis is a fantastic framework with very mature code.
But it has never been end-user designer friendly. That’s one of the reasons so many page builders have become so popular.
But, full theme editing and design becoming native in WordPress via Gutenberg will completely upend the status quo.
And new theme devs, like the nice folks at Astra, are way ahead of everyone else with this.
I think they are poised to be the new theme leader.
If you want to see just how easy it is to get started with Astra, check out this Astra tutorial series from Michelle Phillips at Codefetti.
Then come take my Gutenberg Ninja course and you’ll be off to the races with it.
That’s a wrap for this week’s Tips Tuesday.
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