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The Best WordPress Plugins Every Blog Needs

HostGator Blog -

The post The Best WordPress Plugins Every Blog Needs appeared first on HostGator Blog. When you build your blog with WordPress, it’s easy to customize it and add cool features with plugins. But which plugins? You can choose from more than 54,000, which is kind of a lot. To help you avoid choice overload, we’ve compiled what we think are the best must-have plugins for new and growing bloggers, especially bloggers who want to gain subscribers, raise their social media profile, ace SEO, and more. WordPress Mailing List Plugins for Blogs Building an audience is the main goal for most bloggers, whether they’re creating a community for fun or profit. The cornerstone of audience-building is building an email list, so you can let your fans know when you publish a new post, launch a contest, or have something else to offer them. Email Subscribers & Newsletters by Icegram is a free WordPress plugin that gives you a shortcode snippet to paste into your posts and pages wherever you’d like an opt-in box. As you add subscribers, you can use the plugin’s dashboard to view, import, and export contacts, create welcome and update emails, send test emails, and integrate with a third-party email marketing service like Constant Contact. WordPress Social Sharing Plugins for Blogs Add to Any lets you add social share buttons to your blog that look good on any device, load fast, and connect your content to more than 100 social networks and messaging apps. Want to see what’s getting shared and who’s following those links? Add to Any also integrates with your Google Analytics and Bitly accounts. Add to Any is free, so you don’t need to upgrade to access all its features. Do you have an archive full of posts you’d like to share again to reach new readers and build your subscriber list? The free version of Revive Old Posts will automatically share your old posts to Facebook and Twitter so you can get more mileage from your content. You can choose the sharing schedule, the number of old posts you want to share, hashtags, and other elements. The Pro version adds sharing for LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Tumblr. Both versions of Revive Old Posts support link shortening services like Bitly and Rebrandly. WordPress SEO Plugins for Blogs When people search for the topics you blog about, can they find your blog? Even great content can be hard to find if it’s not formatted, indexed, and optimized for search engines to understand. That’s why bloggers who want to rank well in searches typically add a few plugins to make that happen. We’ve blogged before about how schema.org formatting can help you generate rich Google search results for your reviews, recipes, articles, and other content. You can do this manually with code, or you can add the All In One Schema.org Rich Snippets WordPress plugin to your blog. This free plugin supports 9 common schema formats, including articles, people, recipes, reviews, and videos. When you install All In One, you get a dashboard that walks you through choosing how your snippets will display, where you’ll add the snippets on your site, and how to test your snippets to make sure they look good. You’ll also want a plugin to help Google’s search engine crawlers understand what’s on your site. You can install the Google XML Sitemaps WordPress plugin to handle this. However, if you’re also going to install Yoast SEO, you may want to use its XML mapping tool instead. (It’s not a good idea to use both at the same time.) Yoast is one of the most popular SEO plugins out there, and the free version offers a lot of tools to help you optimize your blog. For instance, Yoast helps you optimize each post for a keyword or keyphrase that you want to rank for, shows you how the post will look in Google search results, tells you how readable your post is before you publish it, keeps you from accidentally duplicating content within your site, and updates regularly to keep pace with Google’s ongoing improvements. If you have a large or fast-growing blog, you can detect and fix site-indexing crawl errors by connecting Yoast to your Google Search Console account. WordPress Performance Plugins for Blogs Jetpack is the Swiss Army knife of WordPress plugins, and it can tackle a lot of tasks for you, like scheduled social media posting, statistics collection, and performance improvements. Jetpack also adds its own layers of security to your WordPress blog. When you’re ready to start making money from your blog through ads or direct sales, one of the paid versions of Jetpack can help you with those tasks, too. As your blog grows, it can take longer for your pages to load, especially if you include lots of images in your posts. To avoid this slowdown, which can raise your bounce rate and affect your search rank, compress your images. The Smush Image Compression and Optimization WordPress plugin can handle this for you. You can “smush” images in batches of up to 50 or smush them individually, without losing image quality. (And yeah, pushing the “smush” button is fun.) If you want detailed analytics of your site traffic, the Google Analytics Dashboard Plugin for WordPress by MonsterInsights connects to your Google Analytics account and deploys your analytics tracking code for you so you don’t have to paste in the snippet yourself—all for free. Then you can see your Google analytics in your blog’s dashboard. A good backup program is insurance against blog catastrophes. Updraft Plus helps you automate site backups, store your backups in the cloud, and access them easily when you need to restore your site or move to a new host. The free version lets you automatically send your backups to Dropbox, Google Drive, your email, and other cloud services, and it makes it easy to restore your site even if you’re not tech-savvy. (Or, you can upgrade to an automated daily backup for your blog with CodeGuard. CodeGuard packs in additional security features with data backups for up to 5 websites.) Set Up Your WordPress Blog WordPress plugins can help you get the most out of your blog, but they can also impact your blog’s performance. Maximize your blog’s functionality and its performance with a managed WordPress hosting plan from HostGator. You’ll enjoy 2.5x faster load times, automated backups, and more. Find the post on the HostGator Blog

Everything You Need to Know About Building a Website in 2019

InMotion Hosting Blog -

Building a new website? The most important thing you need is a quality web hosting and website builder combo that works well together.. From there, it’s cake. In this article, we’re going to talk to you about everything from determining your audience to choosing a domain name to customizing your website and, of course, the perfect hosting plan and website builder. By the end, you’ll have all the information you need to build a quality website from the ground up – even if you have no web design experience. Continue reading Everything You Need to Know About Building a Website in 2019 at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

Time Management Tips for Freelance Writers

Pickaweb Blog -

Effective time management is crucial for freelance writers – you have to plan and execute your writing in a quality way, all while adhering to strict deadlines and client’s requirements. But, this can be a challenge – sometimes it seems as if there aren’t enough hours in the day for every item in your to-do The post Time Management Tips for Freelance Writers appeared first on Pickaweb.

5 Examples of Design Localization Done Right

Pickaweb Blog -

Whether you run your own eCommerce website or host a SaaS platform, localization plays a large part in your overall marketing strategy. As an online brand, your goal should be to reach as many potential clients and recurring customers as possible. According to statistics published by Shopify, 57% of global customers prefer ordering goods and The post 5 Examples of Design Localization Done Right appeared first on Pickaweb.

10 Websites To Find A Freelance Writer

Pickaweb Blog -

There is a growing number of freelance writers who are trying to grow their career in the online world. At the same time, businesses are increasingly seeking high-quality writers who know how to craft exceptional content which will raise their brand awareness, inform their customers and prospects and contribute to their overall marketing results. Luckily, The post 10 Websites To Find A Freelance Writer appeared first on Pickaweb.

7 Reasons Why Your Blog Isn’t Getting Traffic, and How to Fix It

Pickaweb Blog -

If you created a blog to drive visitors and conversions for your business, you’re in excellent company. New business blogs are started each day. Many successfully build a loyal readership and increase their customer base, but even more businesses never achieve that success with their blogs. In fact, more than 70% of blogs fail to The post 7 Reasons Why Your Blog Isn’t Getting Traffic, and How to Fix It appeared first on Pickaweb.

Brands, Drive More Blog Traffic with These 5 Video Ideas

HostGator Blog -

The post Brands, Drive More Blog Traffic with These 5 Video Ideas appeared first on HostGator Blog. 5 Ways Brands Can Drive More Blog Traffic with Video Video content plays an integral role in people’s lives. According to a Wyzowl survey, respondents said on a typical day they watch 1.5 hours of video. Take advantage of this trend by adding video content to your blog. Explain how to cook a new recipe or earn their trust with a heartfelt confessional. It’s time to use video content to benefit your corporate blog. Here are five ways to drive more blog traffic. 1. Grab Attention Between breaking news and cute puppy GIFs, it may seem downright impossible to gain any attention from your audience. Video helps break up the monotony of text and adds a new flare to your blog. Before you spend countless hours shooting a video, it’s vital to understand what actually grabs your visitors’ attention. Do the research to learn what content appeals to them and how you can insert your own brand personality to the mix. Also, think about what emotions you want viewers to feel. Kimbe MacMaster, former manager of content marketing at Vidyard, explains: “Video is the most powerful way to evoke emotions online. It’s King because it offers a slew of attributes above and beyond traditional content like tone of voice, face expressions, and music, to name a few.” Stay away from superficial tactics to draw people to your video content. (So, no throwing a toilet off a five-story building.) Doing absurd stunts or saying ridiculous phrases will leave your audience confused and possibly upset. Instead, share a unique story about your brand, employees, or customers. Grabbing (and maintaining) your visitors’ attention starts with video storytelling.   2. Boost Engagement Enticing people to visit your blog is one hurdle to jump, but keeping visitors engaged requires another level of strategy. To avoid high bounce rates, your brand must continually captivate your audience’s time. Video is one solution to grow your engagement. Effective video marketing centers around information and entertainment. Today’s consumer enjoys learning something new and having fun in the process. Your short-term goal may involve getting the person to smile or laugh in the first 30 seconds of your video. By doing so, the viewer becomes comfortable and more willing to continue watching. In the video below, content unicorn Brittany Berger introduces her audience to the idea of repurposing content. The description even includes a link to a free download for viewers to further their engagement with her. Your team can execute a similar technique by driving YouTube viewers to your blog. It will inspire new visitors to explore about your brand, and you’ll have another high-quality traffic source.   3. Explain Concepts The Internet is a hub of information for people to learn everything from how to build a rooftop patio to how to pass a Calculus class. Using video to explain concepts is a surefire way to drive more visitors to your blog. “How-to videos catch viewers with prime buyer intent. They have a problem they want to solve or something they want to learn. It is up to you to show them how to do it…For example, explain to consumers how to tie a tie or show home cooks how to make certain recipes for your ingredient,” writes Anton Eliasson, director of marketing at Shakr. Retailer Lowe’s uses video to show its customers how to complete home improvement projects. In this example, the viewer learns the steps to building a raised garden bed. When creating how-to videos, think about your audience’s level of expertise. You may decide to segment your videos into beginner, intermediate, and advanced. Avoid forcing every little detail in your video. It’s perfectly okay to link to supplemental material, like a guide or checklist.   4. Answer Questions In this moment in time, online search engines help people find directions to a local grocery store, purchase movie tickets for the weekend, and recreate unicorn cakes with detailed recipes. If someone wants answers to their burning questions, most people respond with “Google it!” This simple response offers your brand an opportunity to create content for people seeking answers on search engines. Your videos will stand out if they offer immediate value. When creating a Q&A video, provide clear and concise answers. A long-winded response will only annoy your viewers and send them to another blog. Start with common questions answered by your customer support team. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box to differentiate your Q&As from the competition. AT&T gets creative with this format by posing a question and then answering it with a video. These short, original videos work well on social media channels.   Quick! What’s ∞ x ∞? Answer: https://t.co/6O3dGoCFHX#GalaxyNote9 pic.twitter.com/EvY0vSVuvw — AT&T (@ATT) August 9, 2018 You also can experiment with unrelated product questions. Enlist the help of your employees to answer silly questions about your brand culture. A little variety offers an appealing charm.   5. Build Trust People buy from companies they trust. Establishing trust means showing a genuine interest in your audience’s interests. Video makes it easier to build that authentic connection. Unlike text, video can translate into an intimate experience for viewers. If it’s an interview between experts, your audience can see the sentiment behind their words. So, how can your brand mix trust into your video production? For starters, be honest with your audience. Steer clear from using any misleading or false information in your content. Plus, disparaging your competitors isn’t a good idea; it only emphasizes your brand’s weaknesses. It’s also important to respect your viewers’ time. It shouldn’t take five minutes to explain the main point of your video. Nathan Ellering, head of marketing demand generation at CoSchedule, agrees: “Length is an important element of video (and definitely ties into distribution). Shorter videos tend to perform better. And if you do it right, you can create one video and share it in multiple different channels.” Try asking your loyal customers to participate in your video content. Their sincere experiences will be relatable to blog visitors, too.   Earn More Blog Traffic Video marketing is a powerful way to attract visitors to your blog. Video content holds readers’ attention, builds trust with your audience, and opens doors to more engagement. Upgrade your blog with video today. Get started by turning your current blog posts into videos. Find the post on the HostGator Blog

Goo.gl is going, going, gone: What to use instead

Name.com Blog -

By Dannielle Cabler If you use goo.gl to shorten your links, you’ve probably heard that it’s being discontinued. That means that by March 30, 2019 (yikes!) you’ll need a new solution up and running. It’s never fun to be forced to switch tools or platforms, but this is actually a good opportunity to reevaluate URL […] The post Goo.gl is going, going, gone: What to use instead appeared first on Name.com Blog.

WP Engine Raises $30K for Central Texas Food Bank

WP Engine -

WP Engine employees are rarely hungry. Our office kitchens are fully stocked with cereal and snacks, and lunch is catered Monday through Thursday, every week, for the entire team. Unlike the 46,000 people who rely on Central Texas Food Bank for food assistance every week, our employees don’t have to worry about where to find… The post WP Engine Raises $30K for Central Texas Food Bank appeared first on WP Engine.

What Entrepreneurs Need in a Website

InMotion Hosting Blog -

Are you looking for tips on using a website builder for entrepreneurs? Then you’ve come to the right place. To be successful, entrepreneurs must be at the cutting edge of technology. Part of this is by creating and updating a website that can bring in visitors and generate leads. But how, exactly, do you do this? Here are the top six things you need for your website if you want it to be effective. Continue reading What Entrepreneurs Need in a Website at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

Join WordPress.com for an International Women’s Day Livestream Panel

WordPress.com News -

On International Women’s Day this Friday, WordPress.com parent company Automattic is hosting four outstanding women tech leaders for a livestreamed conversation about professional advancement, technology, and mutual support as we strive for equity in the workplace. It’s happening Friday, March 8 at 6 pm UTC / 1 pm ET / 10 am PT. Signups are limited to 500 people, so RSVP now to reserve a spot. You can also follow the conversation on Twitter at the hashtags #a8cIWD2019 and #IWD2019. We’re proud to welcome panelists with a diverse range of expertise. Eli Budelli is WordPress.com’s lead of mobile development; Yelp software engineer Tanvi Patel is part of the review platform’s core web team and an outspoken advocate for equality in tech and health; Crystle Johnson, senior manager of diversity and inclusion at Pandora, is an expert in embedding inclusion in hiring and talent retention; she is also the founder of the Red Lip Collective, which empowers young women of color through mentorship and professional development. And Diana Chiu, senior manager of business development at DuckDuckGo, brings deep knowledge of partnerships and M&A cultivated over a decade working across tech, aviation, and biotech. The event will be moderated by Maria Scarpello, customer success advocate for Automattic. Share tweet. The hour-long discussion will cover how to develop women leaders, create support systems for sustainable careers, and harness the power of self-awareness and self-validation. As a distributed company with more than 800 employees in over 60 countries, Automattic sees inclusion and diversity as a constantly evolving idea. We know that diverse teams make better products, and we also know that there is always more work to do. We hope that attendees of this panel, across career stages, gender, and location, will leave with at least one new strategy for using their voice at work and uplifting the voices of others.

Securing Exim for your Hosting Environment

cPanel Blog -

Exim (Experimental Internal Mailer) is a mail transfer agent known for being a general and flexible mailer, with many tools for checking incoming email. Created in 1995 by Philip Hazel, an estimated 57% of publicly reachable mail servers on the internet use Exim. Using the Sendmail design model, Exim has defined stages where it gains or loses privileges on a server, to help increase the security of mail delivery overall. Many of the benefits that Exim provides …

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