Hello Happy Site Owners! Tips this week include a delicious client site launch, why to write year-end posts, what’s up with all the plugin updates lately, nRelate service farewell, an update to reCaptcha, two super duper threads on redirects that are must reads, what really drives meaningful success, the benefit of taking real life connections to grow your online community, sticky posts comes to G+, how and why to change your YouTube URL, and for dessert an old gif that’s still funny. So let’s dive in. Listen to the podcast.
Everything was revamped for SEO, content, conversion, community focus, and visual appeal. Meg and I first met during one of my free website reviews. Her main site is what we had a look at and it just had too much going on and the theme itself competed with the content.
We did a few consult and training sessions that helped Meg find a fresh perspective and clarity about identifying her audience and on how best to present her pretty and inspiring projects.
This new site has a super clean look and it’s super easy for visitors to self-identify the appropriate info and find just what they’re looking for.
Because the info was on 3 different sites, all with different platforms, and because there was so much content, the project took about 3 months of everyone working diligently to get it done.
I’ll be doing an interview with Meg soon so you can hear all about the process from her perspective. And I really want you to meet her anyway because she’s a total delight.
For now, you can virtually meet her through her new site. So go check it out.
– – – – – – – –
Year End Posts
You may recall in last week’s Tips Tuesday a nice post on writing year end posts. We’ll I’m super busy doing just that. And one is a prediction of what’s coming in online and cyber security for 2015. It’s scary. And I mean for it to be to motivate you into taking real action to protect yourself. Goes way beyond your site now into everything you have connected to the Internet.
I also have a post coming about online marketing trends for 2015 and how you can get a jump start with both your mindset and your site to help you have a more profitable year.
Okay, that’s the news from around here.
Let’s jump into this week’s tips from around the ‘net.
Remember the emergency release of WordPress 4.0.1 a few weeks ago? Well, it was due to a hack on some old code. And more of that old code is being probed for weaknesses. The latest is a Cross Site Scripting security issues. And now it’s hitting plugins. So, be sure that you stay on top of your site updates for the next few weeks.
See my post with a running list of all the popular plugins affected to date.
If you use this service to provide related posts at the end of your blog, you’ll want to consider switching soon. They will stop delivering them on Dec. 31. Now, to be clear, nRelate is a 3rd party service, not a local plugin. And those local plugins are what so many more folks use.
There’s the YARRP plugin (Yet Another Related Post), but it can be a performance drain. It’s probably the worst of them. The automation and the logs are database hogs.
I use Micokid’s Related Post. It allows me to type in a search term and manually choose the related content, which is good so I can get most recent.
There are other plugins available too.
The one thing you have to be careful about with switching on these plugins is losing all of your current related post connections.
Hmm, sounds like it’s time for me to do some head-to-head testing to see what kind of performance hog each one of these is, and if there are any tricks to swapping between them so you don’t lose your data.
– – – – – – – –
Finally! Google updated this puppy that lots of plugins rely on. You know what that means – look for plugin updates and setting changes along with them.
Here’s a nice video from Google on the nocaptcha recaptcha part of it. But remember, this goes into a lot of plugins. So it may be a while before you see the updates there.
301, 404, and 410 Redirects – How, When, and Why to use them
There are two super discussion threads going on about this topic on G+.
One was started by me with a specific question about an odd case of multiple sites being turned into one site and whether to use 301s or 410s.
The other is a continuation of overall best practices started by +Jason T Wiser. It also includes info on using bulk redirect handlers if you have a bunch of them, to keep your site from taking a performance hit by having too many of them in the .htaccess file.
If you’ve ever changed permalink structures, or domains, or wanted to delete pages from your site, these are definitely threads you should read.
Your site has been indexed by Google. And all of those links are still active in search. So, when you make changes that affect those links, you also need to make provisions to keep Google and readers happy. When they click an old link, where do they need to land to not be confused by your changes? That’s what you’ll find the answer to in these threads.
I want to thank all of the nice folks that contributed to this discussion, including:
That’s a powerful amount of free advice from folks who know what they’re talking about! Definitely worth following these folks.
As small business owners and bloggers, we all have doubts at times about making a living online. There were plenty of days in the last six years, when I was working two jobs trying to get BlogAid to a point where it was my only income, that I sat and wondered why I was doing this to myself and how much longer was it going to take to catch fire.
But the alternative was to give up on the dream of living the life that I do now. And that was not acceptable.
In this post on +CopyBlogger, Sonia Simone has a good take on those questions we lie awake and ponder.
And I’m positive it will help some of you who are struggling or feeling burnt out, to treat this post like a workbook and answer the questions for yourself.
I think you’ll find answers that will help you keep going with more confidence and clarity.
– – – – – – – –
It seems to me that folks who are sociable, and who make connections and network well in real life tend to more easily flow that over into their sites. A good example is Meg Loven, my client whose site relaunch I mentioned earlier. She runs a local stamping club, so she gets live feedback and ideas on the info she provides.
+Thomas E. Hanna shares a story about his real life connections from frequent visits to his favorite real-life hang, which is Starbucks.
This post will definitely help you make the connection between your live persona and your online persona and that will help you create content that speaks to people.
Woohoo, G+ has rolled out a new feature for pinning a post to the top of your profile feed. It’s a great way to say hey to new visitors or to highlight a special you have running.
Several folks have sent a feature request to G+ to format the post a little differently from the rest of the feed so that it is easy to see it is a pinned post. In the meantime, I’ve seen a few folks include humorous disclaimers to that effect so that second-time visitors won’t see the post and think there have been no updates to the feed.
+Tim Schmoyer has the skinny on this new feature on YouTube. There are several requirements , like having 500 subscribers. But, this will give the ability to have a shorter, branded link. You can see all of the details in this video from Tim.
A little tower gif because it’s still funny
That’s a wrap for this week’s Tips Tuesday. If you’re listening on the podcast, be sure to jump over to the post with full show notes and links, and any news that may have broken after the podcast was recorded on Monday.
And thanks so much for giving this podcast a big star rating on iTunes, and please leave a review and let me know what you think of the show. I really appreciate it. And do drop by and say hey over on my Google+ page too. That’s where I hang out. Be sure to visit BlogAid.net for more tips and resources and I’ll see you online.