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WordPress 3.8.1 Are You Up To Date?

One of the incredible things about the WP (WordPress shorthand he he) is the amazing community of folks who work without financial reward to build one of, if not THE world’s most advanced and user friendly open source blogging or website platforms.

With all the glee and joy that comes with this universal blessing to mankind, there is an unfortunate dark side. Not all people working on WP are altruistic, some people are just plain evil. Hackers fall headlong into to this dark category of the Internets bad boy club and you need to be aware they are out there with one thing on their minds and it is not to make your day a pleasant one.

As with all software code there are vulnerabilities and weak points, that once discovered and shared create a twofold situation.

  1. Firstly they alert the team of tireless voluntary workers of a need for a fix to the problem
  2. Secondly they alert the team of guileless hackers of a backdoor into your site

One cannot exist without the other, being open source means anyone can gain access to the community project that open source software projects essentially are. So with two sets of eyes on the prize, it raises the need to stay one step ahead of your not so friendly neighborhood hacker, should he come a knockin’.

The way to do ensure you keep your WP site or blog from being compromised, is to ensure good security policy.

  • Use strong passwords that consist of upper and lowercase, at least 8 characters and mixed alpha, numeric and symbols
  • Keep your WordPress installation up to date – this one is crucial

Not following these two basic security protocols can get you into a whole lot of trouble. If your site gets hacked, any number of scenarios can unfold for your complete displeasure.

Anything from having pornographic pictures displayed on your site, to hidden black hat backlinks to Russian drug networks and sales sites, to having your site or server turned into a zombie. Yes zombies do exist and once they takeover a machine for their own evil purposes, it is very hard to get back control.

My own experience here, is a very long sordid tale of woe. I run a large number of websites for my business, and I was slack in keeping them up to date with the above security protocol, purely because the site demands and the scale of my blog network made it difficult so, I cut corners and it wasn’t before long that I got hacked bigh time. It took me well over 6 months to finally clear out the scum that had infected my network of sites, so when I say things like is “your WordPress up to date?”, I say this with the utmost respect for the good guys who are out there fighting evil.

One of the tools I have found to be invaluable to managing the task of keeping WP up to date along with the zillions of plugins on my 80+ websites, has been the services of ManageWP. These guys have a control dashboard where you can add in a WP site(s) and have it(them) listed with a semi-automatic process for keeping all your sites or clients sites up to date. It works by a simple click of a button and all your managed sites are updated in one time saving operation.

When I first heard about ManageWP from a web design friend, Matt Webb from the Squad, I was blown away with gratitude as it was the answer to my prayers for a simple way to manage WP on a whole slue of sites. The cost for this service is very reasonable and they have a great team of support staff, so it runs like a rolls royce and since having my security protocols up to date, I have been able to stay one step ahead of the hackers.

So whether you have a bunch of private sites, and need some help from the ManageWP team or not, it is crucial to keep that backdoor shut on any potential hackers who want to make your life a misery. One last word of advice, I find that waiting a couple of weeks when a major update comes out gives most of the plugin community time to play catch up and this can be helpful if you want your site to run smoothly, and if it doesn’t ManageWP also has backups for you to rollback, those guys think of everything.

SEO Tips To Help You Outrank The Competition

You can use search engine optimization to your advantage to gain a decided edge over your competition in search engine results. Using keywords that people tend to use in search engines will attract those people to your site. This article will simplify the methods and ideas that make up the SEO process.

You need a well-coded site when you plan on using SEO efforts to increase site traffic. For instance, if you have JavaScript and the code isn’t done well, spiders can’t index your site. A site that relies heavily on Flash without providing text descriptions will be ignored by the search engines.

To make sure you have a place in search engine results you should have a large amount of keywords, even those that are misspelled, in the area of your site where you put meta tags. The search engine algorithms will pick up on these tags and show your site when people search for these keywords. Therefore, make sure you use all the possible spellings of your keywords.

In order to fully optimize your site, you must focus on keyword density. Ideally, your page’s overall keyword density should be at 20% or less.

One effective tip for affiliate marketing is to set up pay-per-clicks. Although the profits start small, they can rapidly increase based on affiliate referrals.

Choose an SEO oriented style over an AP style to improve your site’s search engine positioning. This means repeating keywords as much as possible without breaking up the flow of the writing. As the search engines do their job by finding keywords and putting a value on their density, you will find your rankings improving.

You read at the beginning of this article that SEO is a simple formula that is based on popular keywords that the search engines use. Adding these words to your site can help search engines find your site if the user types in those terms. By implementing the techniques presented in this article, you can design a website that gets maximum search engine exposure through the strategic use of keywords.

SEO For Beginners – Search Engine Optimization

A Search Engine Optimization Guide For Beginners
There are many keys to improving your company, including SEO. You will see that these suggestions will launch you in the right direction!

You can make this happen by making a robots. txt file and including it in the root directory. What this does is it disallows the search engine from accessing certain files on your website.

Meta tags are an important tool for search engine optimization. These description tags are important, as they show up below the title of your page in search engine results. The meta tag should be clear and informative. Descriptive tags will go a long way in bringing visitors to your website. Your descriptions can lure visitors away from higher-ranking pages, so do not skip this important step.

Site maps can help you with your SEO journey. Spiders can more easily access all of your site through a site map. If you have a large website, you might want to break your site map into multiple sections. A good rule of thumb is to not have lots of links on each site map.

Include your chosen key phrases in your page title and throughout your site. When people locate your page through a search engine, they will see this title, so make it relevant to your site. By having a more generic word in the title, searchers who aren’t aware of your company’s name will still visit your website to find what they are looking for.

Use a site map to help boost traffic to your website. A site map is a great tool to help people locate pages within your website. Visitors will find the links on your site so it will drive traffic to your other pages.

These tips may help you improve your rank. It’s easy to learn good SEO practices, and this is the key to getting the best search engine rankings possible.

What Did I Do In My Last Post?

Ok if you have been following along with my last post, you would have picked up the idea of linking or backlinking as a way of boosting another website’s webpage up in the Google search results. I spoke in simple terms about how this process works to act as a vote for the other person’s website. You will notice that in that post I did just that, I linked my post to the Jon Ledger blog where there is a discussion going on right now on the very topic with which I post.

So you can see that I gave his blog post a vote or boost in popularity for the keyword – great content or more backlinks – which you can see in the image below, it is the part that is highlighted in orange. This is know as “Anchor Text” and is a very important part of the backlinking process. It is a way, probably one of the primary ways of alerting Google to the topic of that page you have linked to. So when the search algorithm see’s anchor text on a particular topic it is given a clue as to the type of content that is published on that web page. When Google sees enough of these links, it decides that the page being linked to in this fashion, is probably a good candidate for someone who is searching for information on – great content or more backlinks.

Screen Shot 2013-09-05 at 12.48.37 PMAnother way of creating a link or backlink is to use an image, which I have done in this post by putting a link on the above image. If you click this image you will be taken to the Jon Ledger post on the topic. Now this type of link typically doesn’t tell Google as much about the page it is pointing to but this also makes up natural types of links that content on the internet seems to attract.

In my next post tomorrow, I will be talking about how to boost your rankings in Google by creating your own backlinks that point to your website, and how to implement a solution that is hands free and works like a charm. It is called SEO, but more on that topic tomorrow.

Greg

Great Content or More Backlinks To Rank Higher?

If we are to believe the information that is continually coming forth from the Google representative Matt Cutts, that all you need to do is create great content and Google will take care of your rankings, then you are in for a rude shock. I can think of countless situations where I have created the so called “great content” and then just left it to Google to come and get me to the top of the search engines for it. Didn’t happen, doesn’t happen and frankly the way the Google search engine algorithm in fundamentally wired can never happen.

Think about it for a moment.

If all anyone ever did was create great content and then left it up to Google to rank it in the search engines, how would they decide whose content deserved to be ranked at the top #1 position in the search results?

To better understand the point I am trying to make here, you need to see the real way Google see’s content. With all it’s intelligence and engineering brain power, Google still relies on human intelligence more than artificial intelligence to get the job done. It has been described as a popularity contest or a voting system. Popularity or votes are garnered from other websites or webpages to be specific, that have a relevant link pointing towards another webpage that boost that other page’s ranking in the search results. Now this is a pretty simplified version of how their algorithm works but it is at the core of why and how Google has risen to such untouchable prominence in the search engine stakes.

If you would like to see some live informative debate on this topic, “Great Content or More Backlinks” you may want to head on over to Jon Ledgers blog to hear what others have to say on this:

http://answers.jlforums.com/290/think-should-spend-creating-more-posts-creating-more-links

PS. In my next post I will explain what I have just done ; ) Stay tuned.

Greg

What is more important for ranking in Google, good content or backlinks?

If we are to believe the information that is continually coming forth from the Google representative Matt Cutts, that all you need to do is create great content and Google will take care of your rankings, then you are in for a rude shock. I can think of countless situations where I have created the so called “great content” and then just left it to Google to come and get me to the top of the search engines for it. Didn’t happen, doesn’t happen and frankly the way the Google search engine algorithm in fundamentally wired can never happen.

Think about it for a moment.

If all anyone ever did was create great content and then left it up to Google to rank it in the search engines, how would they decide whose content deserved to be ranked at the top #1 position in the search results?

To better understand the point I am trying to make here, you need to see the real way Google see’s content. With all it’s intelligence and engineering brain power, Google still relies on human intelligence more than artificial intelligence to get the job done. It has been described as a popularity contest or a voting system. Popularity or votes are garnered from other websites or webpages to be specific, that have a relevant link pointing towards another webpage that boost that other page’s ranking in the search results. Now this is a pretty simplified version of how their algorithm works but it is at the core of why and how Google has risen to such untouchable prominence in the search engine stakes.

If you would like to see some live informative debate on this topic, “Great Content or More Backlinks” you may want to head on over to Jon Ledgers blog to hear what others have to say on this:

http://answers.jlforums.com/290/think-should-spend-creating-more-posts-creating-more-links

PS. In my next post I will explain what I have just done ; ) Stay tuned.

Greg

Great Responsive Image Gallery

Screen Shot 2013-06-19 at 9.13.50 AM
Hey everyone, if you are looking for a really cool way to display a photo gallery on your WordPress website that covers all the bases, then I have some great news for you.

There a great deal of plugins available for WP in the image gallery, photo gallery categories but it can take a while to download and demo each of these to see how and if it works in the way you want it to. Also if you are designing your site to be responsive or work on all devices, then you are going to definitely want to have a “touch-enabled” image gallery. Well I think I have found simply the best one to get the job done. It is a low cost, (not free) plugin and for what you get, it is the best I have seen. I will be using this for all my client sites, as it simply does everything I could possibly want an image slider and or photo gallery to do.

I have just demoed the Royal Slider that is available on the Themeforest website, and it is well worth a look. It is really on fire for downloads at Envato, and is by a designer named, Semenov. Go and check it out now.

Very Cute Animated Movie

Ok, this has nothing to do with websites but it is a neat little movie I just had to share:

http://vimeo.com/polderanimation/blik

How To Create a Facebook Fangate

You have probably seen and interacted with a whole bunch of Facebook fan pages that entice you to “Like” their fanpage in order to get some sort of reward. Well if you have ever wondered just how people do this neat little “Like” trick, then I am going to create video tutorial, all in 10 minutes that shows you exactly how to setup a Facebook Fan-Gate on your fanpage.

Don’t miss the opportunity to tell your fan’s friends when you give them something for free. Setup a fangate and get them to get your giveaway viral and spreading the word far and wide before you know it.

If you can’t wait until the video comes out, then you can visit Fanpage Connect to get started today…

Automatically Post To Twitter, Facebook and Google+ When You Blog

Have you ever wondered just how much time you would save if you just figured out a way to automatically write a blog post and have it instantly sent to your favorite social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook and Google+? You have, well you are not alone.

In fact this post was one of my first to be written and automatically published with the click of just one button to all of the aforementioned sites. The good folks at Social Networks Auto Poster make this time saving process available by using a very cool WordPress plugin, called Social Networks Auto Poster.

So just go visit their site or download the plugin to try it out for free now, simply go to: NextScripts.com – Social Networks Auto Poster