Hello Happy Site Owners! Welcome to the BlogAid Tips Tuesday Podcast for Jan 19, 2016. I’m your host MaAnna.
– updated SEO video tutorials
– making money with membership sites – upcoming Blab
– a call for more webmasters
– peek at what may be coming to the text editor in WordPress 4.5
– a deeper look into the REST API
– update to the CloudFlare plugin
– tips on setting up CloudFlare
– updates and changes to the MailChimp for WordPress plugin
– the pros and cons of page builder plugins
– 4 ways to prevent image theft on your site
– why most bloggers never make any money
– 6 tools to turn trends into posts
– the new SEO plugins I’m checking out
– what’s in the new Blab updates
– tests to do on all membership sites
Listen to the podcast
It’s Busy Season Alright
This past week I’ve been working my way through all of the site audits that flooded in during the special that I ran on them. I think maybe I worked a little too hard. A cold caught me on Thursday. God bless the folks who created Zicam. Hardly feeling the symptoms and it’s moving on. I rarely get ill with anything, so taking good care of myself this week so I can get over this quickly.
Makes a difference when you’re the only breadwinner and you have to keep working, right?
And that’s also why I’m gradually moving my business to have a better balance with passive income too.
I did manage to get out several video tutorial updates for the Yoast SEO plugin’s on-page module. You’ll find them in the SEO course in the Site Success Courses membership. I’ll have them uploaded to the Webmaster Training and Udemy sites as soon as I finish that section, which should be in just a few days.
I also want to welcome all of the new members to the VIP level of the Site Success Courses membership. Many of you took advantage of the special discounts I offered.
BlogAid News subscribers got the best deals.
I’ll be adding the first course to the new Video Marketing Library very soon. And the price for the VIP level will go up immediately thereafter. So, if you’re thinking about getting in, now would be that time.
Make Money with Membership Sites – WPblab Ep. 18
Wed 1/20 1pm ET / 10am PT
Subscribe and/or watch live here
There are only a few ways to make money with a membership site, but lots of ways to lose your shirt. Come Blab with us about membership type sites and how to find the money in them.
I’d like to remind all of the Level 5 members in the Webmaster Training membership to join our private Facebook group. You’ll find the link at the top of your member dashboard.
I’m already posting jobs there, and we have some nice discussions going on.
For those of you who would like to learn more about caretaking sites and security and performance, then please do have a look at the training.
The folks who have taken the courses are getting more jobs because they know these things, so it’s already paying for itself. That’s the point.
And I’ve got a lot more jobs coming and I need folks on my team that I’m positive know how to do things like set up sites securely, check performance, and take over site maintenance.
That’s all the news from around here. Let’s jump into this week’s tips.
Last week we got a peek into the wishlist of the folks working on WordPress 4.5. There are LOTS of text editor tweaks on that list. I mean a lot of them.
Yet, not a single one addresses the main gripe I’ve had about the text editor since day one, which is that it doesn’t write well formatted code for a browser to read. THAT is its primary function.
So, we have to use a plugin like TinyMCE Advanced to make up for it.
Check out my quick video overview and setup of that plugin if you’re not already using it. I love it and won’t do a site without it.
The last half of the REST API will be coming in the next WordPress update too. If you want to know more about it, there’s a new whitepaper that goes deeper into the specs. It is a little geeky, but if you’re one of my dev or design followers, you’ll want to have a look.
The latest release fixes some bugs with how visitor IPs were resolved. You need this because otherwise your analytics will make it appear that all visitors are coming from CloudFlare.
CloudFlare Setup Tip
Did you know that it’s way better to get your own CloudFlare account rather than use the hook up via your host?
Yep, you have way more control over the settings. And you can install the 3 Page Rules you need so that your admin areas don’t get cached too.
I usually walk my clients through the initial CloudFlare set up in a live session so they know how to pause it, or purge the cache. And then I do all the rest of the configuration and integration for them. That includes integrating it properly with the W3TC local caching plugin.
If you use that plugin, be sure to read their update notice before you upgrade. They’ve made some changes to what they call the free and paid versions and a few other changes you’ll want to note.
If you use, or are thinking about using one of those page builder plugins to create your site, please go read this post on Torque.
And I’ll add this. If you don’t know how theme structure contributes directly to conversion, you aren’t current on usability standards, you don’t know basic WordPress coding standards, then don’t even think about going down this path.
At best, it’s a romantic notion and you’re likely to end up hiring a designer anyway. I see it all the time on freelance job boards.
Trying to save money, you’ll end up losing a couple of months of your life and sanity and have to pay someone to fix your mess only to have a bloated, ill functioning site at the end.
Now, if you’re trying to avoid a $3,000 quote you got for a six page site, then don’t turn to a theme builder. Get with someone like me and my team.
Get the knowledge you need to be a smart site owner from me so you can enter the design process with conversion, content, and theme specs in hand. All of that is less than the quote you got for a site you don’t even know how to use.
And being my training client is the only way to get to my design team. That’s because I only send them vetted, educated clients.
The folks at WPBeginner have a nice post on preventing image theft. I know all of them work. What I don’t know is if all of them work for things like Pinterest and Google Images. So, check that out before you implement them widely.
The last one is for putting a watermark on your images. That’s a good idea no matter what. Even if not for protection, for branding’s sake.
I’ve started putting watermarks on my videos for the same reason.
Content Marketing Tips
Ileane Smith hits the nail on the head with this post on why so many bloggers don’t make money.
I finally woke up to her first point about trying to do it all myself and hired super duper help for social media and promotion. My VA, Sheena White, is way better at it than I am and I’m already seeing measurable results.
So, do read this post and see where you might be needing a wakeup call on any of the common failure areas that Ms. ileane points out.
Staying current with the pulse of what’s trending is a super duper way to get more traffic on your site and remain relevant with your audience.
It’s a great way to get new audience too.
Ann Smarty has a super guest post on the Content Marketing Institute blog with six tools to help you find and capitalize on what’s trending.
I haven’t watched the news and very little pop culture stuff in a couple of years. So, these trending tools have been a great way for me to keep up with what’s going on.
For example, maybe you can find some way to make a post related to the Superbowl. Half the world will be using that hashtag soon. Find a way to get your post in on that and see how many new readers you can gain from it.
Y’all know that I have loved the Yoast SEO plugin for a long time. I still do. But, I’m also facing the facts that it has become super buggy since the 2.0 release and the 3.0 release brought a record setting number of 1 star reviews.
So, I’m checking into alternatives because I can no longer afford to have all of my tutorial eggs in one basket.
The folks over at Senlin Online developed a plugin to reduce all of the advertising and messaging that comes with the free version of the Yoast SEO plugin.
And now they’ve found the SEO Framework plugin.
I’m going to be testing it out, along with the All in One SEO plugin. I haven’t touched that in a couple of years because I didn’t think it did a good job. But, I’m betting they have improved it since then, at least I hope they have.
How are you doing your SEO? What plugin are you using? Leave us a comment and let’s chat.
More Updates Rolled Out
Blab just rolled out a bunch of new features. You’ll notice one of them the next time you log in. You now have to choose 3 topics of interest. You can’t even get to your profile unless you do this. And they don’t have all of their tags to choose from either, which I didn’t like at all because one of the ones I wanted wasn’t even there.
It’s all so they can show you a better mix of featured Blabs that might interest you.
The rollout caused a lot of glitches, as all updates on all platforms like this do.
Some of them include replays not being available on your Profile, not getting email download links, show card images disappearing, and more.
I’m hoping that they will fix several other current issues before adding new features. For one, the iPhone app sucks, big. It hasn’t been working correctly for a while now. There are issues with finding and following folks, finding past shows, especially recent ones, and a host of other issues.
I love Blab. It’s done more for my biz than all social media combined. But, in my opinion, they need to work on getting the foundation properly laid, take it out of Beta, and move a little more slowly on feature upgrades, no matter how much folks scream for them. Get what you’ve got working first, then move forward.
I’m also starting to track my viewership more closely too. That has a lot to do with getting into those recommended Blabs to watch, and that means more eyeballs. So, looking at live attendance, and then replay views and shares too. I’ll keep you posted on what I find.
Membership Site Tips
Bob Tolbert and his team at Wishlist Member Plugins have come up with a free plugin to test your WishList Member API connections. The API is what connects the WishList plugin to 3rd party apps.
I’m going to put this plugin on my membership sites and test quarterly, especially with the REST API type changes coming in the next WordPress release.
Some other membership plugins have come up with the same type of test, so check with yours to see if they have one and run them.
And be sure to come to the Blab tomorrow about membership sites and we’ll chat more about this and how to make money with your member site too.
That’s a wrap for this week’s Tips Tuesday.
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