Hello Happy Site Owners and Webmasters!
Tips this week include:
- Why you need to make a long and short term contingency plan for your site
- Updated tutorials in the DIY SEO course
- Our next DIY SEO booster on revamping old content
- Update on my year end goals for Heartwood Art
- Genesis minor updates rolling out
- Why I haven’t reported on the recent backdoor hack attacks on some plugins
- A new lazy load plugin from Google and why not to use it
- What’s in the new Site Kit Plugin from Google
- Why I’m considering adding Bing to the DIY SEO course
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It’s been another highly productive week here with lots of new tutorials and site audits and more.
Shutting Sites Down
Several of those projects have been shutting sites down.
For the most part, they have been extra sites folks started but aren’t really doing anything with.
And those extra WordPress installations were just a performance and security issue waiting to happen and harm their main site.
So we got rid of them and either parked the domains or pointed them to a page on the main site.
Make a Final Contingency Plan
But, I’ve also had requests to sunset sites. I get at least one or two of those a year where it’s time for the site owner to close it down and move on.
There’s a lot to doing that, as it’s not just about deleting the site. It involves all of the accounts tied to it.
And it reminded me of how important it is to have a contingency plan in place at all times so that someone else can manage your site related affairs in case you can’t temporarily, or it needs to be shut down permanently.
I have a contingency plan written down and my POA person knows how to find those printed documents and who to contact to help with things because she would have no way to know how to do it herself.
So, think of your followers and your loved ones and get a contingency plan written out to make it super easy on all of them to deal with taking care of your online presence in your absence, if needed.
Make a Short Term Contingency Plan
I’ve also thought about all the folks on the east coast impacted by the Dorian Hurricane.
It’s a good idea to have a short term contingency plan for when you’re unavailable for a week or more due to power outages or floods or other severe storms or whatever comes along like that.
I have my whole back office on GSuites and I can access that from all of my devices.
And I can log into my sites via my Chromebook. I don’t care for the security issues with apps to login from iPad, as most used XML-RPC connections last time I looked. Maybe they have upgraded their security to use the WP REST API now. Please let me know about that if you use one of those apps.
Your peeps will understand if you can’t be available for a while. But you do need to have a way to let them know.
As promised, I revamped the entire Yoast SEO On Page Module set of tutorials in the DIY SEO course.
And I started updating the Google Search Console ones and dang if they didn’t go and change it again!!!
Google has added a new way to verify your domain name with an Auto DNS Verification feature.
Right now it works with a few of the top domain registrars, and I’m sure they will be expanding it.
I’ll do my best to test that out and will include it in the next batch of tutorial updates for you.
Next Booster for DIY SEO
DIY SEO course members are in the midst of a fall booster program for total content revamp.
We started that process back in the spring with the last of our live workshops. But many folks, including me, got busy with other summer activities. So this little weekly booster program is helping us get back on track.
I sent out a survey about which type of project would be most helpful to do next. So far we’ve just been deleting old content.
Members can see the results of that survey in a livestream in our private Facebook group.
Overwhelmingly folks want help with updating old content that is already performing well.
So, that will be the focus of the rest of the Boosters that will likely run through October.
And they will include live chats so we can address your unique content situations too. There’s no way to fully cover that in generic tutorials. So, live group reviews and consults are the best way to do it.
Then we’ll take a break for the holidays.
Our live workshops start again in January and I’ll be expanding them with a bigger focus on revamping old content.
I’ve also got a whole new set of tutorials planned for that course that you’ll love.
So if you’re in, stay in. And if you’re not in yet, seriously consider getting in before the year is out because the price is going up once I add the new modules to the course.
Site audit clients, and members of any of my other courses get big discounts!!! See the discounts section in your current member area for details.
I’m very pleased to have published a couple more pillar, evergreen content posts on the woodworking site.
And Gutenberg makes it way faster to do!!!!
I decided not to make a video for my post on how to choose the right caster. It’s actually the first post I’ve done this year that didn’t have a video. My videos are doing very well everywhere, including the post promo videos I’ve done on Instagram. I’m looking forward to doing them on Pinterest too.
The post I published on Sunday was all about mounting the casters, and it does have a video.
These posts take a full week or so to make. But, I know they are the best thing I can spend my time on right up front for my SEO long-game.
I’ve got two more posts on my to do list about building my workbench that I’m so very pleased to have done!!!!! No more being on the floor!!!!
And then I’ll stop there as I’m starting a super deep dive into Pinterest and affiliate marketing for the rest of the year to get those two things up and running well on the site.
That will likely involve tweaking or adding to every post I’ve made this year, so it’s a pretty big undertaking. And then it will be easy to do on every new post going forward.
I also want to get that done so I can be ready to do a gift giving guide post for the holidays.
And, I’ve started on my first art project too, which is the whole reason I’m building this woodshop.
With my SEO goals already in the works, and my promotion underway, if I can get one piece of art made, and even make $0.10 of affiliate income from this site before the year is out, I will have reached all of my goals with it for this year as a side gig.
That’s all the news from around here. Let’s jump into this week’s tips.
WordPress 5.2.3 Rolled Out Without Issue
I haven’t heard anyone screaming about the WordPress 5.2.3 auto update last week.
Isn’t that great news?
The WordPress 5.3 major update scheduled for November will be a whole other story!!!
They have some really big plans for it, including a LOT of Gutenberg stuff rolling into the core, which delights me. And a more secure way of pinging WordPress.com for plugin update checks and the updates themselves.
I’m keeping my eye on the development and will keep you updated as final decisions are made about what will be included in that WP release come November.
Genesis Minor Updates Rolling Out
I believe we are up to Genesis 3.1.2 at this point. All the numbers after 3.1 are called point releases and they are bug fixes for the major release.
I believe most everyone has worked out how to deal with their copyright footer now, so it’s been safe to update.
And ensure you continue to update these minor point releases too.
There are posts from Forbes and other big sources circulating on social media about a major backdoor hack attack on a few plugins which allows a hacker to create an admin account and essentially take over a site.
And while this is a series security issue, there’s a reason you haven’t heard me report on it.
None of my clients use the plugins involved.
Y’all have enough to keep up with and I don’t report on the 10 plugins a week that have issues, including the few on that weekly list that we all use, unless our online house is going to burn down because of it.
I appreciate all of the folks who have been posting in the groups and sending me emails on this latest hack attack thing.
But please know that I saw the reports way before Forbes did and before they started circulating widely on social media and I’m constantly keeping my eye on the changing hack attack vectors.
If there’s anything you need to do or change, I’ll let you know.
For my site audit clients and webmasters, you are as protected as I am.
There’s nothing for you to concern yourself with over this right now.
Enjoy your life.
If you’re not a site audit client or webmaster – worry. You’re not protected, even if you use one of those behemoth security plugins.
If you’re a DIY site owner, get on my wait list for a site audit.
If you build and/or maintain sites for clients, get into my Webmaster Training for Designers course.
Both are some seriously cheap peace of mind when compared to the disaster of getting hacked.
In recent Tips Tuesdays you’ve heard me report that Chrome 76 finally added the lazy load feature.
But you also heard me report that they say it is mainly for devs right now and to not dump your current way of doing lazy load. For most of us, that’s through our caching plugin.
And you also heard me say that this new way of doing it is not supported in all browsers yet, which is also another reason to keep doing what you’re doing.
Well, Google decided to get into the WordPress plugin game and they have made their own lazy load plugin.
Don’t do it.
Stick with the way you are doing it now.
And I’m sure all caching plugin devs are currently digging into Google’s new plugin to see what they’ve done and they’ll be adding it their own plugins if it looks like that’s the best way to go for now.
So again, stick with what you have and they’ll tweak it for us if/when it’s a good idea to do so.
Lazy load is not the only new plugin Google has.
They released a new Site Kit Plugin back in late 2018.
Its main function is to connect your site to Google’s marketing services such as:
- Search Console
- Tag Manager
- PageSpeed Insights
Its secondary function is to bring all that info into a dashboard within your WordPress site.
This is in an effort to make it easier for you to see all of this info without having to log into each of those other separate accounts.
The plugin is still in beta, but it may be drawing close to a full release.
I hope to be testing this plugin before the year is out and adding it to the DIY SEO course if appropriate.
I’ll be testing for how it affects your site speed too, as bringing in all that extra info is going to slow things down on the admin side.
If you’re using any type of plugin now that brings Google Analytics data in, you’re already experiencing some of that slow down. More data in means more wait time.
And you can’t have that every time you log into your site to do stuff.
Plus, if it’s giving us a lot of useless info we don’t need to see every time, like a PageSpeed analysis, then it’s not worth the bloat.
That’s especially true if you are not even using most of the services, like AdSense and Tag Manager.
So, we’ll see how this pans out and if it is worth adding, or if you’re still better off logging into Search Console and Analytics and such to get the info you need to improve your content marketing.
Consider Bing for DIY SEO Course
The Bing search engine is making major strides to become a viable alternative to Google.
And in site audits this year I am seeing a dramatic uptick in their bots crawling sites.
Even though most of us don’t use Bing for search, I’m thinking we may need to at least properly prep our sites to help their crawlers find more of our content.
The reason why is that will make us stand out for the few folks who do use Bing.
And that will drive more traffic to us.
So, I’ll look into including Bing SEO setup in the DIY SEO course at some point.
That’s a wrap for this week’s Tips Tuesday.
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