Hello Happy Site Owners! This week’s tips include a big meeting today on the future of WordPress, 15 ways to find out if your site has been hacked, some super alternative to sliders, a super duper post on free images, 8 words for getting your content shared, 7 tips to write effective copy, a spectacular list of questions that could transform your blogging, the big sites that are dumping social media share buttons and why, and why one podcast man is shutting down a biz that draws in $57,000 in profits. So let’s dive in. Listen to the podcast.
Y’all know I’ve been diving deep into site performance for the past few months. The reason why is because it means money to the site owners. Now, I realize many of you don’t have the high traffic to really notice something like that yet. But, I guarantee that if you have a site that is not up to par, you are losing money.
If your site is loading too slow, folks just click away. That’s costing you business.
So, I’m releasing a new series of reports on site performance and the first one will be out very soon. I’ve focused on the low hanging fruit that all site owners can do on the cheap and easy to boost performance by 300%. Yep, you heard me right. In fact, the very first one will give you a 200% boost.
I’ll have a summary post on all of it for you.
And, for you designers and developers, and SEO folks, and consultants that follow me, this full report has all of the numbers to back up the claims. And I show you exactly how to replicate the tests. This will be invaluable to help you convince clients exactly why these things need to be done.
So, look for both of those to be coming out soon.
Today there’s a live HOA (Hangout On Air) with a panelist of folks discussing the future of WordPress. The panel includes Matt Mullenweg, the Founder of WordPress Software and CEO of Automattic, Troy Dean, who is the host, and the founder of WP Elevation, Jake Coldman, who is the president and owner of 10UP, Lisa Sabin-Wilson, who is a partner at WebDev Studios and AppPresser, Scot Basgaard, with WooThemes, and so many more.
The time is listed as 8:00pm UTC. That will be early afternoon in the U.S. There’s a link at the bottom to get your local time.
The page I’m linking to is to sign up for notifications. So do that now and even if you miss the live event, perhaps you’ll get a notice of where the recording is posted. It’ll probably be up on YouTube.
– – – – – – – –
This post is from my favorite WordPress mechanic, +Makis Mourelatos who runs FixMyWP.com. He gives you 15 ways to check to see if your WordPress website has been hacked. I strongly suggest that you read it because some of those hacks are undetectable any other way. Most hackers don’t want to take your site down. They want to use it for their own purposes. So, go read the post.
Y’all know in a few recent Tips Tuesdays how I’ve been sharing the data about how bad sliders on your home page kill conversion, site performance, and SEO. Well, Joyce Grace has written a post on the ManageWP blog offering several good alternatives. And she provides some nice screenshots from sites that most of you will recognize with the alternatives they chose. So, you don’t have to give up style when you give up your slider. The sites all look very nice and they help meet the business goal. Win-win.
Content Marketing Tips
There are 1000s of blog posts on how to properly find and use free images. This one is different.
First, it’s from +Ana Hoffman.
That should be ‘nough said. But just in case you don’t know, she’s that cool chick with the delicious looking images who writes the well-researched, epic content I feature all the time. And she loves her morning coffee. Seriously.
So, you need to read this post to see how mentioning James Bond and using a pic of a moo cow got her into trouble and what she did about it. Plus, there’s a bunch more super tips and links you need to know about too.
– – – – – – – – –
The words you use matter. And if you want your content clicked and shared on social media, some words are more powerful than others. In this post, Michelle Shaeffer shares an infographic from Shortstack with which words work best on different social media platforms. I would suggest you also consider using more of these words in you post titles too.
– – – – – – – –
Writing copy for your site that is effective is a hard thing to do. But these 7 tips from Leslie Anglesey on ProBlogger will get you on the right track. They are all about how it’s done today and for the near future, taking into consideration the changes at Google and with readers. Basically, content marketing is maturing. And people want to buy from people they trust more than a splashy, hyped up brand. Now, the latter still works, but readers are going numb to a steady stream of it.
My two favorite tips here are #1, which is always the first rule of effective copy. It’s to know your audience. My next favorite is #6, which is about how to let ideas for copy rise organically. She calls it how to Understand the Dynamics between Genius & Creativity. All 7 are spot on, so go read that post.
– – – – – – – –
And while you’re on ProBlogger, catch this post from Darren Rowse, the owner. It’s not so much about doing that 10 minute thing every day, and no, I’m not going to spoil it and tell you what it is. And if you’re frustrated at me for that, take it as a sign that he is a master headline writer. You’ve just got to know what it is now so you’re going to visit the site. That’s the point.
But what I really want you to do is scroll down to the last half of the post with the list of questions he asks. That’s a full education on successfully content marketing right there.
– – – – – – – –
Sam Solomon has removed the social sharing buttons from his posts. And in this article, he cites other big time sites that have too, and links to their reports on how sharing actually increased. He also covers aesthetics and User Experience.
On BlogAid, I’ve always hated the look of the share buttons at the top of the post between the title and the content. But, 3 years ago, there were multiple reports showing that posts got more shares when they were there. So I placed them at the top and bottom of posts and sure enough, I got more shares.
Well, that’s just not true anymore. I’m still getting more shares, but not from those buttons. The shares are coming directly from folks clicking the share or retweet links directly on the social media platform where they first found out about the post.
So, I got rid of the row of buttons at the top and now only have a pin it button there because I’m trying to make some inroads to using Pinterest more. And it’s working.
I have two other reasons to dislike social sharing plugins in general and those are performance and security. In the near future I’m going to have the social follow buttons in my header hard coded into my site and then I’m going to remove the social share plugin that provides those and the social share buttons at the bottom of the posts. I’ll let you know what happens to my share count, but I expect it won’t go down.
Multi Media Tips
If you only listen to one other podcast besides Tips Tuesday this week, it might need to be this one from Cliff Ravenscraft, aka The Podcast Answerman. Now, you may think he’s crazy. And he addresses that in the podcast. But the fact is, he will make even more if he lets this part of his business go.
I have to tell you, doing things like that can seem scary. But I’ve done it, and it works. If you want to grow your business, you’re going to have to turn loose of something that is tying up your time now so you can be free to do the things that will expand your biz into the areas where you need to grow. So, go listen to his podcast and get inspired about your own growth.
That’s a wrap for this week’s Tips Tuesday podcast. Please jump on over to iTunes and leave a review for me. I sincerely appreciate everyone has been doing that. And, feel free to leave a comment here on the blog or on G+. I love hearing from you. Be sure to visit BlogAid.net for more tips and resources and I’ll see you online.