Hello Happy Site Owners! Welcome to the BlogAid Tips Tuesday Podcast for August 4, 2015 and I’m your host MaAnna.
– getting back on track when life happens
– the new Genesis 2.2 framework release
– just how popular the WP Rocket plugin is in only 2 years
– what Google’s #NoHacked campaign is all about
– 12 routine maintenance tasks to perform on your site
– a stellar hosting performance benchmark test for 2015
– a single filter to stop ghost spam in Google Analytics
– a roundup of the most important SEO trends for 2015
– new video features in Facebook
Listen to the podcast
Udemy Test Video Accepted
I’m delighted to report that my Udemy test video passed muster. I sent them my most recent MaAnna Minutevideo on what’s New in Yoast SEO 2.3 which has the new title graphics, a talking head portion, and a screencast.
And that’s good because I entered Udemy’s challenge to have this course launched by August 21. They’re giving a lot of promotional perks for folks who complete the challenge, and that will be a super way for me to get started on that platform. With 12-15 videos to create, I’ll just barely have enough time.
Best Laid Plans
Now that the new video production techniques had been approved, I thought I’d be off to the races this past weekend making all the new videos for the SEO Course, which is already in the WordPress, SEO, Genesis Video Library and the one I also plan to release on Udemy.
But Murphy had other plans. It became an exercise in futility with one thing after another not working out, plus unwelcome interruptions, like my upstream neighbors needing a new electric line run. The city’s electric crew shut off power :15 seconds from the end of me recording one of those videos. And that was not a fun way to find out that the battery in my UPS was dead. Computer went off immediately.
I managed to squeeze out 2 videos. I had planned to do at least 6. Between that, client work, and the social media challenge I’m in with +Denise Wakeman my plate runneth over.
So, no down time for me for the month. And that’s okay. Everything I’ve been working toward for the last 6 years is coming to fruition. And getting launched on Udemy is a huge part of that plan. I’ve got the momentum and I’m going to surf this wave. As a solopreneur, that’s just what it takes sometimes, especially when you’re building the foundation of your business.
Speaking of keeping a hectic pace, in the past few weeks I’ve had a couple of clients drop out of their training schedule. Life happened and they needed to postpone.
I have to tell you, that can really take the wind out of your sales. You go into a project all fired up and then something unexpected drops in and derails the whole thing.
I’ll be here when they’re ready to resume.
How do you recover when things like that happen to you? I hope you’ll leave a comment on the blog post, or wherever you see this online, and let us know.
That’s all the news from around here.
Let’s jump into this week’s tips from around the ‘net.
The first Release Candidate is out for WordPress 4.3. This indicates that all additions to the release have stopped and that only bug fixes will be addressed.
The pending public release date is Tuesday, August 18.
I’ll be creating a tour video of what’s new in this release for you between now and then.
The Genesis 2.2 framework update has been released. It includes a bunch of usability updates.
But, to make use of them, your child theme will also need to be updated.
I’ll be running tests on them as soon as I can to see what those benefits look like.
Genesis eNews Extended Plugin Updated
If you use this plugin, you may want to check it after the update. The sign up part should be fine, but it might have tweaked your style settings.
You know, it’s a good idea to check your site’s functions after all plugin updates. Hint, hint.
Holy flipping cow!! The WP Rocket plugin has taken off like a rocket. After just 2 years they’re making some big bucks. This is a premium caching plugin that is reported to be as easy to install and configure as WP Super Cache, but as effective as W3 Total Cache, both of which are free. To me, this just proves that there was indeed a niche to fill in the market.
Keep in mind that the settings on all of these plugins has to match your hosting environment. That’s one of the main reasons you hear folks complaining that they don’t work. They follow a tutorial online and don’t get the same results.
I’ve heard rave reviews about the WP Rocket plugin. I’ve also seen it have just as many glitches, and few more security issues as its free counterparts. So, nothing’s perfect, right?
I was hoping to do a head-to-head comparison on these 3 plugins, but at the time I had it scheduled early this summer, WP Rocket was in the midst of having one of those glitches. They’ve got it worked out, but I just can’t spare the time right now. Those tests are very time consuming. Maybe I’ll get to it this fall, but that’s looking pretty busy already.
Site Maintenance Tips
Google’s #NoHacked campaign is back with tips to help you keep your site safe online. Well worth a read.
Thank you to +Ana Hoffman for helping us stay on top of the news. She’s super good that way. Be sure to follow her if you’re not doing so already. And catch her Weekly Marketing Skinny every Saturday too. It’s a great roundup of all the news.
This post on Elegant Themes blog is a nice maintenance checklist for your site. And, it has many of the tasks I perform regularly on my sites and my client maintenance sites too.
Note that the number 1 task is to start by checking that your backups are making.
I would add to that, be 100% sure that you know how to restore that backup too. You don’t want to be hunting that info when you need it because by then you’ll already be in a panic.
I want to send a big thank you to Kevin Ohashi for running his annual hosting performance tests again this year. They are super time consuming because he is extremely thorough and careful.
The report is a bit techie for non-geeks, but you’ll want to scan through and see where your host fell in the list. The top picks are near the bottom of the post.
I was delighted to see A Small Orange do so well. And there were actually a couple of hosts on the list that I haven’t even heard of.
Most of the big names were there, like Bluehost and GoDaddy, and they didn’t fare well at all. In fact, look over the numbers on them, especially the response time on Bluehost. Backs up what I’ve been telling clients privately in site audits too.
The one glaring omission in the test was HostGator. I asked Kevin about that and he said they were just launching a comparable product at the time of his tests, so didn’t get on the list this year. They’ll be there next year, though.
I hope you’ve had a chance to see my post on how to check and fix things on your site to make the Googlebots happy. You may not have received a warning email from Google yet. They are still rolling out. But, you can check on Google Search Console (formerly Google Webmaster Tools) for any warnings, and not have to wait on the email, or wonder if you’ll get one.
Ghost spam has become a huge issue on Google Analytics. They just skew everything. And for folks who rely on those analytics to attract sponsored ads, it’s a nightmare.
As far as I can tell, it’s been confirmed that they don’t actually interact with your site, so they aren’t a resource hog or security issue.
This nice post from Carolos Escalera on the Moz site has details on a single filter you can add to Google Analytics to block them. It’s not going to block all of them, but it should get most, which will be enough to turn your analytics into something you can read and trust again.
However, when you get to the part of the post that talks about blocking crawler bots in .htaccess, don’t do it that way. It’s a whack-a-mole game that will never end.
Use the GM Block Bots plugin. It’s a thing of beauty.
Visit the Plugins page on BlogAid to see it and the rest of my top recommended plugins.
SEO may not be what you think it is anymore. The nice folks over at SteamFeed surveyed a bunch of the top SEO and traffic generation folks online, asking what they considered to be the latest SEO trends.
I want to give a shout out to +Dennis Seymour for the heads up on this post.
Now when you read this post, keep in mind that these folks cater to different clients and types of businesses. But, for the ones that are talking to content marketers, which are most of the folks listening to this podcast, there is a common trend.
Topic authority is the top SEO trend for content marketers.
I’ll have a post for you tomorrow with more on what that means and what it takes to do it. So, watch for that.
Subscribe to BlogAid posts when you get BlogAid News to ensure that you don’t miss important posts like this.
Facebook has launched a slew of new features in an effort to attract more video creators.
- a new video uploader
- ways to restrict the audience by age and/or gender
- and ways to make a video private
THE TWO BIGGEST THINGS you need to know about this are:
- Facebook’s total lack of copyright infringement protection
- Facebook’s ownership of any uploaded data
Facebook’s TOS and Data Policy are not anywhere close to the same as YouTube’s with regard to who owns what you create.
Facebook has the right to do with it what they please, even if you delete all of your uploaded content and you delete your account with them.
I do plan to make use of Facebook’s video feature. I also plan to watermark all of my videos I upload there. In fact, I’ll be watermarking all videos I upload anywhere from now on, including my own member sites.
Video theft is a high dollar business. Always has been outside of the U.S. and other countries with good copyright laws. Online video repositories have just made it easier for the pirates to get higher quality videos.
Just be careful with how you use Facebook for this.
That’s a wrap for this week’s Tips Tuesday.
Find these tips helpful? Subscribe to all BlogAid Posts
Subscribe on iTunes
Drop by and say hey over on my Google+ page
Be sure to visit BlogAid.net for more tips and resources and I’ll see you online.