Since it first exploded onto the scene back in 2003, WordPress has established itself as one of the best content management systems in the world. It’s not terribly difficult to see why, either. It’s got one of the most user-friendly interfaces around, and is equipped with excellent features and functionality for both free and paying users. Because of this immense popularity, there exists a staggering amount of plugins with which writers can optimize their blogs.
One thing I (and many others) love about the platform is that much of the SEO is already built into the blog design. Using a tool such as All-In-One SEO should truthfully be enough for even the biggest SEO newbie to properly optimize their blog posts. However, that doesn’t mean proper optimization is a cakewalk. If you aren’t taking the necessary steps to write SEO-friendly posts to begin with, you’re not tapping into the full potential of the platform. Continue reading →
Anyone who does a lot of WordPress installation and configuration will have developed a set of plugins that they install on every new site. We get to know the quirks and functions of our default set as well as we know the back of our hands. It’s a useful productivity habit.
I’m always happy to try out something new, but if you have a core selection of plugins, it’s easy to keep track of security issues and monitor the progress of development. It also allows me to construct a well-worn workflow so that WordPress installations can be completed quickly and efficiently.
There’s nothing more heartbreaking for a website owner than having put dozens or hundreds of hours of work into perfecting their WordPress site, only to have it trashed by hackers, hardware failure, or a simple administrative mistake.
WordPress is enormously popular, with good reason, but as with any complex software it’s susceptible to malicious individuals and user errors. Your WordPress database and other assets should always be backed up so that, in the event of a catastrophe, you can simply reinstall, import your data, and be back where you were before disaster struck.
Most decent hosting companies will keep a backup for you, but as the saying goes, if your data doesn’t exist in three places, it doesn’t exist at all. Having a backup available that you fully control can be very useful.
There are many services and extensions that will help you with backing-up, but we’re going to take a look at how to back up to Amazon’s Simple Storage Service (S3). Continue reading →
It’s a cliché to say we live in an age of impatience, but that doesn’t make it any less true. Internet users expect that the information they want will be delivered to them immediately, and research shows that they won’t wait around — bounce rates are proportional to page load times. The slower a page loads, the more users will click the back button and return to their search engine to choose the next link in the list, which is likely to be a competitor.
Google, in its effort to direct its users to the sites most likely to satisfy them, uses page load times as one of its signals for determining ranking. All else being equal, you could be losing ranking to a competitor because your site loads less swiftly.
There are various strategies site owners can implement to make sure that their users get the pages they want as quickly as possible, and we’re going to have a look at some of the most important ones here. Continue reading →