Making the most of your WordPress blog

Everyone has a blog these days or so it seems and in order to keep your customers up to date with what you are doing, industry news and anything else you wish to share, having a purpose built blogging site is important. WordPress is one of the popular platforms on which to build your blogging site and as it is so easy to use, is one that anyone can use successfully. It is easy to add text, embed video, pictures and infographics. There are lots of free tools that you can use to enhance your blog and of course, it can be shared on social media. You can employ a number SEO strategies to get your WordPress blog found by the search engines.

What You’re In For

With all the hype around cloud computing and no-configuration-required hosted services, you don’t hear about the joys of running great software on your own server very much. The fact is, if you’re just a casual user who doesn’t know if you’ll stick to blogging over the long haul, or if you don’t want to spend a little time maintaining WordPress, you should sign up for a hosted blog at WordPress.com or Blogger or TypePad. (Also, this tutorial is not for you.)

But if you’re willing to keep WordPress updated religiously, you get access to a whole world of WP plug-ins that add features to your site, the opportunity to create and tweak custom WordPress themes, and a huge sense of accomplishment. In the most recent version of WordPress, keeping your installation up-to-date is a matter of clicking a link when you get notified to do so.

Everything you need to know about installing WordPress is right here. Got it up and running? Let’s get to customizing.

Initial configuration

The Beginner's Guide to Tricking Out Your WordPress Blog

The first thing you want to do on your WordPress blog is set up a new author with administrative access. Don’t use the default “admin” user to write your posts; create your custom username and give it admin privileges. Then, log out of WordPress and back in as your new username. For security reasons, some folks like to delete the admin user completely (as some WordPress attacks have used it to do bad things to your blog). Once you’ve got your administrative account working, add other authors to the list of users who might be posting to your blog. Click here to continue reading

5 basic tips to improve WordPress for SEO and user experience

27 WordPress SEO pluggins

 

Blogging for business

Most businesses have a blog these days, not only does it give them an opportunity to release company information but also share the lighter side of life. Blogging can be a great way of increasing traffic to your website and you can also use it for SEO purposes. It takes a bit of skill to write good quality blogs that attract the search engines but with a bit of practice, it can be done.

When you are blogging for business, be proactive in getting the most from your blogging efforts. If you blog strategically, your keywords will be a natural part of your writing. Adding a few of these SEO tactics will boost your search engine results – getting you more successes in your social media marketing strategy.

Here are 5 tactics to boost your blog SEO:

  • Target your content
  • Google Adwords
  • Link to other sites
  • Link to internal pages on your site
  • Use alt text 

1. Target your content

Use content themes, and know your target market. By writing about your business, product, industry and customer lifestyles you will be using the keywords your customers are searching for. This increases your search ranking without much additional thought.

2. Google AdWords

Use a keyword finder, such as the keyword tool in Google AdWords, to broaden your keyword scope. This can expand your vocabulary and vernacular.

5 Tips to Increase Blog SEO image XjdEleceiISn1C9qrkX2tmW81SsIYAyHnGRXswN6eQkqHEe6Gu14Smg3bJXF9T7xIhDjia9uo5Rh U54iuohxP 5QwCEEtu8v2VRXgFnOWbdokGkvFG4QSIg2

Be careful to integrate these words naturally. If your sentences seem too contrived, your customers will stop reading your posts.

Additionally, don’t overuse keywords. Keyword stuffing is frowned upon by most search engines, and will produce negative results.

3. Link to other sites

Referencing other blog posts is great for SEO. Google seem to like this.

It can also help to create networking opportunities for your business. Linking to industry related blog posts can be developed into guest blogging opportunities, news leads or even new business partnerships.

Additionally, your readers will appreciate you sharing extra information with them. Click here to continue

Further information

Blogging for business: driving traffic to your blog

Blogging for SEO: a beginner’s guide to WordPress

WordPress could benefit your business

WordPress is a particularly useful site for releasing your blogs and articles. As we are often saying, it is so important to publish blogs and articles to improve your online presence and promote your business. You might wish to impart your knowledge or give advice on how to do something and using a platform such as WordPress is ideal. Not only is WordPress free to use but there is plenty of online assistance and a forum to help you if you require it. It is easy to manage, easy to upload content, images and video too. Take a look at these articles and see how WordPress could benefit your business.

WordPress is the leading blogging software. It has gained popularity because it was free, was well-designed and had a very active bunch of volunteers helping develop the package.

Rapidly it has become the most popular blogging package on the Internet. This has led to tens of thousands of developers producing thousands of plug-ins and themes, enhancing the package and the look of blogs in general.

Below are 10 reasons why you must use WordPress

1 – It is the most widely used blogging software around

WordPress is now the market leader in both blogging and content management, open source, free software packages.

Its popularity is growing and for the majority of bloggers it is the obvious choice to use.

2 – WordPress is free

Because of its popularity WordPress has a great deal of support in this has enabled it to develop fast. The package is now very sophisticated and has the appearance of a commercial product. The fact that it is free is a great bonus — and makes it a program that you can afford, no, it is a program that you cannot afford NOT to use Click here to continue

Further reading

How to use WordPress for business

Getting started with WordPress

Top 10 reasons to use WordPress for your website

 

Blogging can enhance your online presence

Blogging can be great fun and can really help publicise your website. There are many platforms where you can register and blog for free, so it needn’t cost you any money, just a bit off time. It is a good idea to allow guests to comment on your blogs. This can help you form good relationships with your visitors and even other bloggers which could be helpful in the future. Don’t necessarily reject those who disagree with you, remember you are conveying your point of view which may not be the same as someone elses.

When you begin blogging, deal with one topic at a time. Don’t try to write about everything you want to say in one go, make it small bite sized pieces that people will enjoy reading and encourage them to come back for more. Blogging can be a very useful way to expand and enhance your presence online and if you enjoy writing and have plenty to discuss then you can do your own blogging. Your writing should be well thought out with correct grammar, punctuation and spelling. Do not be tempted to use text speak or too much slang in your writing as this has been proven to turn people away. Write about things you are passionate about, keep the enthusiasm in your blogs. If you can include polls or surveys in your blogs, this can help engage visitors and increase traffic to your site. Include some keywords and key phrases into your blogs as these will help the spiders find your writings. If you can include pictures or images as well, these can enhance your visitors’ experience.

How to Grow Your Blog – A Really Good Resource

Just been altered to this excellent post about how to grow your blog, some 17 ways of making your blog really work for you being listed.

At SOM we have our own methods and in April will be launching both our new look site as well as our new Blogging package (so new we have yet to come up with a name!), but whatever, this article will help all who are interested in making a name for their blog.

http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/17-ways-to-grow-your-blog-from-top-bloggers

How-To: Setup Regular Backups & Secure WordPress

This blog was written by Cat M, a guest author from Axon IT on the EvoHosting blog. She certainly seems to know her stuff and it was that good that I just had to replicate it so that my readers could back up and secure their precious blogs too.

Cat – the author

Over the past few years, WordPress has evolved from much more than just a blogging platform.  While WordPress remains a popular out-of-the-box solution for bloggers, it is widely used as a customisable CMS for business websites, because it allows individuals to regularly update content and manage their site’s functionality.

However, as WordPress is a database-driven application, there are risks associated with the sensitive information stored in the website’s backend.  Should the data within this administration panel get into the wrong hands, there are multiple implications, which is why it’s important to take the proper steps to ensure maximum security.

Aside from the security precautions that can be retrofitted to a default WordPress install to enhance security (some of which will be covered below), data needs to be backed up regularly in the event of a security breach.   While many web hosts offer data protection with their business hosting solutions, it is still important to regularly backup your WordPress databases to a safe location.

Out of the many WordPress database plugins available, WP-DB-Backup is one of the most reliable and secure in terms of setting up regular database backups. WP-DB-Backup works to solve two backup issues: firstly, the ability to backup as and when required (either via a zipped file download, or straight to email); secondly, the ability to schedule backups at regular intervals,  including hourly, daily, and weekly.

In order to use WP-DB-Backup, you need to download the plugin and install it via your WordPress admin area.

Once you have downloaded and installed the plugin, you will find a “Backup” option under “Tools” in the WordPress Dashboard. The scheduled backup section can be found in the bottom half of the page. To configure this plugin, you need to do the following:

  1. First, choose how often you would like your automatic backup to occur. Ideally, you should backup your database daily, especially with large or busy websites.
  2. Secondly, select the tables from the right-hand side that you wish to backup. By default, the core WordPress tables will be backed up; if you want any of your additional plugins to be included in the backups, then you need to select them individually.
  3. Finally, enter the email address you want your backup to be sent to. If you want to backup your databases on a daily basis, then you may want to consider sending your backups to a Gmail account, as Gmail offers large store capacities.

Once you have completed the steps outlined above, simply click the “Schedule Backup” button.   The plugin will automatically begin to create a backup of your WordPress database based on your chosen settings.

These regular backups will provide you with external copies of your data in the event of data loss or corruption. Combined with the data protection and backups provided by your web host, WP-DB-Backup helps ensure you will have always have a recent copy of your WordPress site.

While regular backups are an imperative aspect of securing your website, you can further protect your WordPress site by doing the following:

  1. Install and activate the Login Lockdown WordPress plugin
  2. Install and activate the WP Security Scan plugin
  3. Where possible, ensure your database tables don’t begin with the prefix ‘wp_’
  4. Change the main administrative user account so the default username isn’t ‘admin’
  5. Ensure you are running the latest version of WordPress, and keep your plugins updated

A guest post on the EvoHosting blog by small business IT support specialist axon IT. Along with keeping your online data secured, all of your offline business data (including files, emails and invoices) can be automatically secured with a managed offsite data back-up solution.