Hello Happy Site Owners! Welcome to the BlogAid Tips Tuesday Podcast for Feb 2, 2016. I’m your host MaAnna.
– The Real Cost of Free in Site Ownership #WPblab Ep. 20
– WordPress 4.4.2 rolling out – what’s in the update
– Is WordPress changing too fast – Matt Mullenweg’s response
– the best spam plugin and service
– SiteGround migrates all of their shared hosting clients
– massive DDoS attacks continue
– what you can learn from folks having their biggest income year ever
– how and why to write captivating blog post intros
– 25 content and video marketing stats that you need to pay attention to
– why live-streaming video has become a legit and popular way to connect with your audience
Listen to the podcast
Happy Groundhog Day to all of my U.S. listeners. Did you see that movie with Bill Murray? Does your business feel like that, as if you’re just repeating the same ole same ole and not getting anywhere?
I did what Bill’s character did. I changed my focus last fall and it has really started paying off. And I’m not through yet.
We can’t just keep doing things the way we’ve been doing them because the online marketing landscape has changed so much. What used to work no longer does.
And that’s the focus of this week’s tips. I want to help you stay on top of what’s working now and get a little more of that leading edge juice for your business success.
The Real Cost of Free in Site Ownership – WPblab Ep. 20
Wed Feb 3 at 1pm ET / 10am PT
Subscribe or watch live
Learn how to avoid the most expensive pitfalls new site owners fall prey to with wanting everything for free. I’ll share details from site audits that reveal just how much money free really costs.
This maintenance update is scheduled to roll out today, Feb 2. It’s just a few bug fixes. If you have auto updates turned on, it will be done for you.
I do have auto updates turned on, and I recommend them. And, this is just one more reason that I’m enjoying the VaultPress Lite backup service. It’s daily. It’s pretty rare for one of these minor updates to break anything, but if it does, I don’t have to worry about when my last full backup was.
There’s a whole ecosystem around WordPress, including developers, designers, trainers, and even hosting that caters specifically to the needs of WordPress site owners.
A lot of those folks, me included, have complained that WordPress core changes are moving too fast and that we can’t keep up.
We could keep up if so much stuff wasn’t breaking or unstable due to all of these changes.
There’s a nice post on WPTavern about these concerns, and Matt Mullenweg’s response, which is basically, “sorry, we’re forging ahead.”
Honestly, I don’t think WordPress is changing fast enough for him. He has a vision for it becoming an application platform and if it wouldn’t break absolutely everything, I think he’d change it into that tomorrow.
I also believe that the pace of this is going to drag the surrounding ecosystem into the future, no matter how much it kicks and screams along the way.
I think this is finally going to start spelling the end of everything being for free or cheap, like plugins and themes. The development, maintenance, and support costs are just getting too high. I’m actually glad of that and hope we all do move into paid and better supported extensions of the core software.
There’s a post on WP Explorer asking if Akismet is still the best spam plugin for WordPress.
My answer is no. It hasn’t been for a couple of years now.
But, there are several spam services in this post that I had not heard of. They block spam before it ever even gets to your site, not afterward like plugins do. And they block spam from everywhere, not just comments.
- WP-SpamShield Anti-Spam
- Stop Spammers Spam Prevention
- Anti-Spam by CleanTalk
- Simple Security Firewall
I’m going to be looking into at least two of these services. I’ve tried out Antispam Bee and WP Zero Spam and I’m getting less and less impressed with both of them.
Do you use any of these services or others not mentioned here?
Please do leave a comment for us on the blog, or anywhere you see this post online.
For all of you on SiteGround shared hosting, I hope you made it through their migration to the new servers yesterday. Please do let us know how that went for you.
I’ve got several site audit clients on SiteGround and I can’t wait to measure the performance difference.
Most of these changes benefit the host. There are a few side benefits to clients such as faster SSD servers and resource bursts for occasional overages.
The big difference may be in your local caching. Settings that work well on spinning drives could slow down SSD. So be sure that you take a performance check to ensure all is well with your site.
And read my post for more details.
Massive DDoS Attacks Continue
A huge DDoS attack started just prior to New Year’s Day and it’s still raging. It may not be from the same source, but it’s definitely a wave that has not abated for an entire month.
A few weeks ago I heard that some servers on A Small Orange were down for over a week. WPEngine even got caught in that storm and some of their mission critical servers came down.
In other words, it was super duper bad to the point that it even overwhelmed hosts that have paid big bucks to mitigation services to keep from going down.
This past week, A2 Hosting was hit hard. They had a few minutes of downtime throughout the week, like 10 minutes at a time, about 3 times a day. But they mostly stayed up. I know for a fact that they spent a bunch on mitigation services, and that really paid off.
But this kind of thing is why I stopped publicly endorsing hosting. http://www.blogaid.net/why-i-stopped-endorsing-website-host-providers/ Even though folks say they don’t blame me, they still do subconsciously, and it hurts my reputation publicly.
All hosts, even good ones, are going to hit bumps in the road like this. There’s no place much to go except boutique type hosts, and they’re pretty expensive.
Don’t get caught with your site down and nowhere to turn folks. Get your site security and backups squared away now. These DDoS attacks are going to just keep rolling.
Paula Gregorowicz has a super post that really hit home for me this past week.
Winter is generally busy season for me and I was overwhelmed this year with site audit requests and the site fixes that came from them. I’m thrilled for the business, but by the same token, I didn’t keep a healthy balance with myself and ended up catching a cold. And the lingering drainage from that has kept me off Blab and making as many video tutorials as I had on the schedule.
I don’t usually run myself down like that, but I just reached a little too far this time and didn’t get away with it.
One of the things Paula talks about is that even 6 and 7 figure biz folks have cash flow problems. It’s not about the income being enough. And having that sort of income doesn’t mean you can rest on your laurels either. You have to find the balance in it all.
How do you create that balance for yourself when workload gets heavy? Leave us a comment on the blog, or wherever you see this post online.
Content and Video Marketing Tips
Writing great copy that hooks readers is a real art. The Blogging Wizard site shares six great tips that I think are super for writing great sales page copy too.
It’s all about involving the reader immediately by making them feel like this copy was written just for them.
This post by Amanda DiSilvestro on the Higher Visibility blog is aimed mostly at B2B companies. But there are some things here that you’re going to want to pay attention to for your blog too.
95% of B2B buyers prefer shorter content formats, yet long-form blog posts generate 9x more leads than short-form blog posts.
The takeaway for me there is that long-form content is super duper for SEO and that’s what is generating the lead in the first place. But, you also need to make your copy scannable, and have internal links peppered throughout to maybe shorter content that is to the point and has a specific conversion goal.
50% of all mobile searches are conducted in hopes of finding local results, and 61% of those searches result in a purchase.
The takeaway for me is that if you have any sort of local component to your company, then you should take advantage of it, and definitely ensure that you are maximizing your mobile search opportunities. Several of those will be off your site, like Google local and Yelp and other directories that show up high in search.
There are lots of other mobile and e-comm stats in the report, so if that’s you, then you definitely need to give it a read.
The power of video
- Using the word “video” in an email subject line boosts open rates by 19%, click-through rates by 65% and reduces unsubscribes by 26%. (Those are big numbers, folks.)
- 92% of mobile video viewers share video.
- By 2018, mobile video will represent 69% of all mobile traffic, which is an increase from 53% in 2013. Last year, users watched about two hours of video per month on their mobile phones.
- 75% of B2B organizations optimize their video for SEO. (That means you’re competing with that SEO.)
- “How to” searches on YouTube are up 70% year over year. (That’s something everyone can get in on.)
The takeaway for me is that you need to get on video. I’m focusing a lot of my time and money to more video and it’s already paying off, big time. I’ll be investing even more as the year goes on.
Read my post on why 2016 Will be the Year of Video if you need any more convincing.
If you still need any more convincing about video, see the latest round up from +Ana Hoffman. Live-streaming video has become a legit and popular way to connect with your peeps. There’s a platform to suit everyone now. And thanks to Ana for this round up and helping us keep on top of the changes and trends with it too.
That’s a wrap for this week’s Tips Tuesday.
Find these tips helpful? Share them with your peeps!!!!
Subscribe to all BlogAid Posts
Drop in on my BlogAid Blabs and say hey in person.
Subscribe on iTunes
Be sure to visit BlogAid.net for more tips and resources and I’ll see you online.