Entries Tagged 'Blogging' ↓

SEO Principles for WordPress Blogs

coffeeWordPress is a relatively SEO friendly blogging tool to begin with. It offers a linking structure that makes it relatively easy for spiders to crawl your pages, and the code contains very little validation errors if any at all. However, there are a few additional steps that you can follow in order to make your WordPress blog even more SEO friendly, and most are so simple to implement that there is absolutely no reason not to.

1 – You need to make sure that the URLs on your pages contain your blog’s post name, rather than simply a post number.

This can be easily accomplished by using the permalinks page in your WordPress settings, typing “/index.php/%postname%” when asked about custom structure. Alternatively, you can write a rewrite rule directly into your .htaccess file in order to have an increase in control over the syntax of your URLs.

2 – Change your page title order so that your blog post name appears before the name of your blog or the date of your blog.

The first words in your title are always given more weight than anything else, and they will also catch the attention of your readers more effectively. This can be done by editing the header.php file, swapping the order of the PHP tags so that wp_title appears before bloginfo.

3 – Make excellent use of your heading tags.

You may find that your blog entry title is insert automatically into a tag, or that your blog name is in a tag. You can edit these tags in single.php as well as header.php in most WordPress templates. You can choose a format that suits you, but the best solution is typically to put your blog entry title in, swapping your blog name for an image instead. Also make sure that you make good use of other heading tags, using a good heading structure any time that it is suitable.

4 – Avoid duplicate content issues by using “index, nofollow” tags on your tag pages, archive pages and category pages, allowing search engine spiders to follow the links on these pages but not to list them in the index.

There are a number of plugins that can make this a really simple process, and one of the best is called robotsmeta.

5 – Pay attention to the linking structure in your blog, making sure that all of your blog entries can be properly accessed with as few clicks as is possible.

Remove unnecessary links from your blog pages and remove unnecessary pages from your blog as well. You are going to want to consider using a pagination plugin to help you remove unnecessary clutter from your blog for ease of use and increased access.

There are a number of other techniques that you can use to maximize your SEO for WordPress, but this is certainly a good place to begin.

Photo Credits: 1

Originally posted 2009-02-06 08:35:13. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

WordPress Backup

WordPress Backup is an essential plugin for all WordPress blog administrators by the Blog Traffic Exchange. It performs regular backups of your upload (images) current theme, and plugin directories. Backup files are available for download and optionally emailed to a specified email. Don’t get caught without a recent backup of your theme or images or plugins.

If you get a blank screen please make sure…

  1. You are using the latest version: Plugin Zip.
  2. You are using php5 (php4 has reached end of life and is no longer supported).
  3. Modify the permissions of the bte-wb backup folder to be 755 (switch the permissions from 777 to 755 or visa versa)

You can adjust the interval between backups and the email address to which the backups are sent.

Please note that as the size of the zip files increase, it may not be possible to email the files due to limitations of email servers.

It is also essential to backup your wordpress database. There are many excellent options for wordpress database backup… Blog Traffic Exchange recommends: WP DBManager

Installation

  1. Download
  2. Unzip
  3. Upload Folder to WordPress Plugins Folder
  4. Activate Plugin — If you get a blank screen please see instructions above.
  5. Adjust Options if needed.
  6. Add an htaccess file to you backup folder (bte-wb folder). Here is what I have in mine. This is simply a filename “.htaccess” with the following contents (hat tip to Wendy).

    RewriteEngine On
    RewriteBase /
    RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} .*bte-wb/.*
    RewriteCond %{HTTP_COOKIE} !^.*wordpress_logged_in.*$ [NC]
    RewriteRule . - [R=403,L]
    Options All -Indexes

Troubleshooting

  • If you get a blank screen please modify the permissions of the bte-wb backup folder to be 755 (switch the permissions from 777 to 755 or visa versa)
  • Upgrade to 1.8.0
  • If you have trouble using the automatic plugin upgrade feature, please deactivate plugin prior to upgrading.
  • If plugin causes memory error please make sure php.ini set memory to 64M in wp-admin folder.
  • If plugin options page to make sure directory locations and permissions are set correctly.
  • If you have any other problems please email me at kevin @ blogtrafficexchange dot com.

The zip process is memory intensive and will fail if there is not enough memory allocated to php. Make sure you have enough memory allocated add this line to your php.ini files in the blog root and the wp-admin folders.

memory_limit = 64M

I have it installed and tested on Bluehost.com, DreamHost.com, Midphase.com, Hostgator.com, 1&1, and GoDaddy.com across 30+ sites… The only problems I ran into were not enough php memory to email the file via the chunk_split(base64_encode(file_get_contents(....

If you run into errors with 1.8.0 or higher please email me at kevin @ blogtrafficexchange.com with as many details as you can.

If your screen goes blank or you notice other irregularities after activation delete the plugin folder via ftp. This will remove the plugin.

Options

  • Interval — The interval between backups.
  • Email — The email address to which the backups are sent.
  • Delete File — Remove File after email sent.
  • Backup Directory — The directory to store the backups. Must exist and be writable.
  • Backup URL — The url to the directory where the backups are stored.
  • Uploads Directory — Path to uploads directory.
  • Plugin Directory — Path to plugin directory.
  • Theme Directory — Path to theme directory.

Download

Donate



Recovering from Disaster

So the worst has happened, but since you use this plugin you have a backup of your database, plugins, themes, and images folder. Now what? How do you get your blog back?

  1. Make sure you are comfortable with your current host. Since you are going to go through the effort to restore your site, if you were contemplating a move to a different hosting provider now is the time to act.
  2. Download the latest copy of wordpress.
  3. Copy the worpdress files into the desired folder location on your host. (I use the domain root, but subfolders are sometime appropriate depending on your desired setup.)
  4. Copy the theme, plugin, and images backup files into the correct locations. Respectively, the defaults are wordpress_root/wp-content/themes, wordpress_root/wp-content/plugins, and wordpress_root/wp-content/uploads
  5. Restore your database to a new database using your hosts appropriate tools. I usually use cpanel and phpmyadmin, but sometimes the database is too big and I need to use bigdump. Take note of the database location, database name, database user, and database password.
  6. Edit the file wordpress_root/wp-config.php and enter the values from the previous step.
  7. Is everything working? Do your victory dance.
  8. Donate
  9. Still having problems? I am available to help. If it is something easy or something I left out of the above instructions then I will help for free. Otherwise, assuming you have valid backups I can restore your site for $400 given the proper access.
Wordpress Backup Options

Wordpress Backup Options

Change Log

  • 12/31/10 – 1.8.0 – Fixed 2 WSOD issues. 1. Do not backup if a backup is in
    progress, which limits the WSOD to the thread creating the backup. 2. If not running in safe mode. Extend the timeout of the backup thread. This will allow for large directories to be backed up.Adding closing php brace and setting link.
  • 12/29/10 – 1.7.1 – Adding closing php brace and setting link.
  • 5/17/10 – 1.6.4 – Added option to delete the file from Server.
  • 7/12/09 – 1.5 – Tested and Confirmed on WordPress 2.8.1
  • 01/07/09 – 1.4.5 – Better Reinsituted automatic backup folder creation.
  • 01/07/09 – 1.4.4 – Better Handling of file and directory permissions.
  • 01/07/09 – 1.4.3 – Fixed location of pclzip lib in wordpress hierarchy.
  • 01/07/09 – 1.4.2 – Added bakup url option exposure. If plugin/upload/theme directory doesn’t it will not be backed up.
  • 01/07/09 – 1.4 – Added the various folder paths as options and check their existence and permissions via the options panel.
  • 01/06/09 – 1.3 – Using the worpdress pclzip class from wp-admins/includes. If it doesnt exist then using the packaged version. This fixes upgrade issues noticed from 1.1 to 1.2.
  • 01/06/09 – 1.2 – Added Plugins Dir. Fixed some memory issues. Release to wordpress plugin dir.
  • 01/05/09 – 1.1 – Release to public.

Originally posted 2009-02-05 20:30:06. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Keeping It Fresh

freshIf you want to keep readers coming back to your website, you should produce fresh blog posts to keep their interest. Look to the biggest sites, what they all have in common is that they constantly produce content that is new and fresh. This is also what the webmasters of the blog will say is the most difficult thing. Producing content that is fresh and frequent is a challenge that, once overcome, will take your blog to a new level.

There are a number of things that can help you in producing content that is fresh. The first is to make sure that your posts are kept brief. Trying to consistently put out 500 word posts will quickly burn you out, with the time that is taken. Many good blogs have many posts that are short. The average attention span of the internet reader is about a minute and a half. Short blog posts will be refreshing for the readers who may not have the time to read very long blog posts.

Another thing that is good for keeping content fresh is to prepare a backup stash of articles, or a working queue. This sort of action is especially good for those who may find themselves suffering from writers block. The premise is to write articles before you need them. You may have a stash of articles for when you are blocked, or you may have a stack of articles that you add to, and pull content from, following a schedule planned in advance.

Some blogs will invite their readers to be guest bloggers. This will not only introduce ideas from your readers, which can act as a muse for your posts, but it will also encourage participation from your blog readers. Interaction is a surefire way to create a sense of community with your readers. Reader interaction is also good because some great blog posts stem from conversations in the comments section. Let us not forget the biggest benefit to guest bloggers, one less blog post for you to write.

Guest bloggers do not have to readers. Rather, you can find a blogger who is within the same genre or niche. Inviting these bloggers to contribute can enable you to form professional relationships with other bloggers. These relationships can encourage the growth of ideas through conversations. Many times, guest bloggers from other blogs will also allow you to write for their blog. This gives you and them access to each others readers, bolstering the traffic to both blogs.

Sometimes the best way to ensure fresh content is to blog in teams. A team of bloggers may run a single blog or many. The idea is that the bloggers will share in blogging duties, so that if one can not contribute for a period of time, the others can take up the slack and ensure that fresh content is produced. Such an agreement between bloggers will require less work for the bloggers, and give a number of different views within the content.

Producing content that is fresh is how you will ensure that your blog flourishes.

Photo Credits: 1

Originally posted 2009-02-06 09:00:10. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

How to Monetize Your Blog

moneyIf you want to monetize your blog, you have to ask yourself a series of questions, starting with what kind of blog is it, and do you have any readers? If you’re not getting readers at your blog, you might as well put all your money-making plans on hold. Even if you got the greatest pay-per-click program in existence with the highest rates (which won’t happen if you don’t have readers) you can’t make money because there’s no one there to click the ads. Generate traffic first, and then worry about monetizing your blog.

If you have a steady stream of traffic, then the best ways to make money from your blog depend on the type of blog you have. If your blog is a general interest blog, it’s probably harder to make money from that than a specialized niche blog. Of course, if you have thousands and thousands of readers, you can run general advertising for things people typically need like credit cards, mortgages, insurance and very general basic things.

If your blog is general interest, though, no one is coming to your blog searching for cheap insurance, the best way to refinance a mortgage, or a better rate on a credit card. They’re coming to read how you burned the cookies, your thoughts on today’s politics, and the latest celebrity gossip, or whatever you’re blogging about.

But if you pull in thousands of unique visitors over a month, you could still make some money from these kinds of advertisers because a certain percentage of them will click the ads, and a certain small percentage of them might buy. This is a hard way to monetize that requires thousands and thousands of readers.

If your blog is smaller and more of a niche blog, you have many more options. Lots of people use Café Press or other sites that will print custom t-shirts, mugs and items for you. You could have some principle of your blog, your logo, or some great concepts you created printed on these items and link to them from your blog.

You can use the mother of blog money-makers, pay-per-click ads like those through Google and Yahoo. Don’t just sign up and assume it’s all automated, though. You have to watch the ads that show up, the click-through rates, and your pricing. If the ads that are showing up aren’t targeted closely enough and aren’t getting good click-through rates, you’ll get less per click than otherwise .So watch your statistics and make adjustments as needed. These pull off your keywords, so be keyword focused when you write posts.

Affiliate marketing is a top way to monetize a blog, too. If your blog is about how to lose weight, for instance, you can promote a weight loss product or information that has an affiliate program. When people follow your link to that product and buy it, you get a commission. The more narrow your niche, the easier it is to monetize your blog because the people coming there are looking for specific information and products.

Photo Credits: borman818

Originally posted 2009-06-10 05:06:18. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Using Article Marketing for a Blog

insertarticlesOne of the most popular things on the Internet today is blogging. In fact, if you notice the trends over the past few years, bloggers have gotten a bit of notoriety and attention even in the news. Bloggers are becoming quite an influential group in the news category and for a business, it has become very profitable.

Article marketing was once a way for people to bring information about a product or even for writers to bring attention to their other work. Today, many savvy bloggers are using article marketing online to direct traffic to their blog and reap the rewards that come with more web traffic.

This type of marketing is perfect for bloggers because there is already a lot of content on your blog that can be transformed into marketing articles. Just get some of the themes or topics that you have on the blog and extend them into longer articles that can be used on the article sites online.

Any business online that is selling a product must use marketing to get the traffic to the website. It is the same principle for bloggers. If you want the blog to get attention and be read by more people, article marketing is a perfect opportunity to bring traffic in a cheap and effective way.

Bloggers are usually pretty knowledgeable about the web and understand how to use advertising on their blogs to make money from the work that they are doing. Article marketing is just an extension of this knowledge. Creating keyword rich articles should not be a problem for the smart blogger.

The first thing that you should do is create a collection of articles for your blog. The articles should be centered around the content of your blog and a good starting number for articles is between ten and twenty five. The more articles you produce, the better your chances of creating traffic to your blog.

When the articles are prepared, you should submit them to the various article directories online and some of the publishers of ezines to get your work out there. These are the places where your articles will start to get some attention for your blog.

Keep going with your article marketing until you have hundreds or even a thousand articles out there in the various article directories. If you don’t have the time for all of this writing, there are article writers out there who can help you with the content.

Over time, you will see your articles bringing the traffic to your blog. The more articles there are out there the more traffic you will see on your blog. Articles will continue to work bringing in the traffic all year long. Keep putting them out there while you maintain fresh content on your blog.

It might take some time to realize the kind of traffic that you want, but over time, your blog will start to gain attention. Whatever your reason for blogging is in the first place, you will certainly be that much closer when you use article marketing to increase your traffic.

Photo Credits: {Guerrilla Futures |…

Originally posted 2009-06-19 05:29:02. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Blog Search Engine Optimization

searchBlogging has become a truly popular form of media for the sharing of ideas, the facilitation of communication and other methods of collaboration on the internet, and as a result it has generated a great amount of interest and buzz traffic to all kinds of different website. When it comes to creating and maintaining a blog from an internet marketing perspective, things like blog search engine optimization become vital because they pave the way to attracting new people to our web pages.

By building a blog and providing readers with informative and useful content, you can gain your own personal following of readers that subscribe to what you write and return time and time again to see what you have to offer. From this readership base you will be able to create all kinds of additional buzz by providing links to websites, services and products and anything else that you wish. However, even if your blog is one of the best in the world, if nobody is capable of finding your blog then you are only going to be writing for yourself because nobody is ever going to see anything that you have to say. So what you have to do in addition to simply writing your blog is that you have to have a strong and sturdy blog search engine optimization plan in place as well.

The goal of a blog search engine optimization plan is to make your blog as findable as it possibly can be. Here are some ideas for how you can make this happen:

1 – Your blog articles need to be search engine optimized as part of your blog search engine optimization campaign. This means you should be using the right keywords without overusing your keywords, and you need to properly utilize HTML links in the resources section of each of your articles as well.

2 – You need to submit your blog articles to other websites as part of your blog search engine optimization campaign. You should join websites like Go Articles and EzineArticles and submit content to these websites for syndication so that you can create additional valuable links to your website while building authority on the web.

3 – Third, you need to make sure that your blog is being indexed as part of your blog search engine optimization campaign. This means that your blog should be pinged as well as crawled by websites that are designed to index blogs. Some examples of these sites are Zimbio, Ping o’ Matic, Ping my Blog and Blog Digger, but there are many others out there. The more you find and ping, the better the results will be.

4 – Finally, as part of your blog search engine optimization campaign you should be registering with blog search engines, checking your rating to see how you compare. This will give you a foundation for improving your blog.

Photo Credits: jose u

Originally posted 2009-10-05 03:15:19. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Tips for Writing Your Blog

cupcompWhether you are blogging for business applications, or for personal growth, the process of writing daily is a rewarding activity in many ways. The individual writer is able to benefit from the satisfaction that is gained from personal reflection. Blogs afford the writer the means to distribute information and ideas everywhere the internet can reach. For the business, blogs enable a conduit within which real time feedback and communication with customers can occur, as well as dissemination of information in order to bolster a company’s credibility with peers and customers.

When it comes to writing a blog, there are various techniques that one can employ. One such technique is the implementation of Search Engine Optimization methods, where by the blog is ranked higher in search engines through manipulation of how the algorithms work. This is usually done by careful cross linking, adding blog keywords, including terms similar in meaning, and other similar steps.

Choosing the keywords for blog posts can also serve to provide focus to writing. Knowing the keywords for a blog’s post of the day will enable you to make sure your post stays on point. You can also use the keywords to make sure that you are not very repetitive, by avoiding using the same keywords constantly. You can use the keywords to ensure that your posts cover a variety of topics, even within a particular area of interest.

Another writing tip is to make sure you are posting in great frequency, with at least a post a day. If that cannot be managed, then one should at the very least shoot for a couple of posts over a week. Traffic to a blog tends to be proportionate to how often one posts in the blog. The posts should have value and be interesting and relevant. One should not write just to write, there should be meat to blog postings.

The average web reader will have 96 seconds worth of focus. That means they will read your posts for only about a minute and a half. So blog posts should be short and to the point, making sure that the most important information appears at the beginning. Well written posts will captivate the interest of the readers, and be within three to six hundred words in length.

In line with keeping posts short, limit posts to one important topic. Scatter shot posting will fail to keep interest for very long. Rather, the successful blogger will keep postings focused on single points. If there are multiple directions you wish to cover, turn them into blog posts, and distribute them over the week. This will help to make sure that postings stay regular, especially during those patches of time where writers block can hit.

One of the most important decisions the blogger can make is the domain and blog titles. This is essentially branding, creating a name that is memorable to your readers and will give them avenue to keep returning to your blog. It should be on point, related to the theme of your blog, and well thought out.

Photo Credits: 1

Originally posted 2009-02-06 08:45:43. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Principles for Good Blog Design, pt 1

tipsMost of the open source blogging platforms out there are going to come with at least a few different basic blogging designs. Some platforms call them themes, others call them templates, and others still have completely unique names for them. Most of these basic themes or templates have nothing inherently wrong with them, but customization is somewhat necessary otherwise everyone would have a blog that looked exactly the same as every other blog. Most blogging templates are really basic, and adding your own flair to them is easy. Still, many people get the whole customization thing wrong, and need to be steered in the right direction. There are some basic mistakes to how people go about customizing their blogs, and hopefully we can dispel some of them in this series on principles for good blog design.

1 – Whether you really want to or not, it is vital that you have some information about *you* in the blog. Either create an about me page, or have some information about yourself displayed in the sidebar of your blog. This should be a prominently placed section so it can be easily found, and it should be truly about who you are, rather than read like a resume.

2 – Make sure that your personal contact information is readily available, and even more importantly, easily visible. You need to at least have an e-mail address visible, and a phone number would be even better. If you want to prevent spammers from harvesting your e-mail address, use an image to display it rather than text. You can always use a free web based e-mail address such as a yahoo, gmail or hotmail address to keep from having your true personal address displayed, if you like. By posting real contact information, you are going to make yourself appear much more real. Although people may not really find reasons to contact you, you’re still indicating to your readers that you are available, which is a good thing.

3 – You should absolutely include a picture of yourself in your blog. All blogs, even business blogs, are personal, and the people who visit yours are going to want to know who you are and what you look like so that they can get to know you, and can benefit from the personal nature of your blog. It is much easier to build trust between yourself and your readers if your picture is visible and your readers feel like they know you. You do not absolutely need a picture, but it is still strongly recommended that you do have one in order to get the most out of your blog.

4 – Some of your blog posts are going to be more popular than others. Once you recognize which blog posts these are, keep them from being buried by finding a way to highlight them.

Continued in part 2 of this series.

Photo Credits: 1

Originally posted 2009-02-06 08:15:26. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Mistakes to Avoid When Blogging For Business

bloggingMost businesses today recognize the power of blogging and are using it to their advantage. Everyone from the bigger companies to much smaller businesses are taking advantage of the free advertising and wonderful increase to website traffic that can be gained from successful blogging. There are some mistakes that you should avoid if you are blogging for your business. Unfortunately, these mistakes have been learned the hard way, but you can learn to avoid these mistakes before they happen to you.

The most common mistake that people who are Internet marketing make is only blogging when there is available time. Anyone who is working in Internet marketing knows that there is no extra time and blogging must be scheduled. If you want your blogging efforts to be successful, you must blog with consistency. The readers of your blog will soon become tired of waiting for the next time you have available time to update your blog and move on. This is lost traffic for you that may never return again.

Poorly written content on your blog makes you sound unprofessional. A blog is intended to establish you as an expert. How much of an expert can you be if the content of your blog is full of grammar and spelling mistakes? Take a little time to go over the content before you post it to make sure that the typos are all corrected and everything is grammatically correct. This will protect your image as an expert in your field.

Allow your blog readers to comment on your content. Many people are so afraid of negative comments that they simply don’t allow them at all. Blog readers love to have the ability to voice their own opinion on the content on your blog. If they find that they can’t comment, they will simply move on from your blog to one that allows them to make comments. You can always filter the comments and approve the ones that you want. At least your readers will have the option.

Your blog must link to your website or products that you are selling online. Why do you have a blog? Chances are it is to sell your product and increase the traffic to your website. However, if you don’t link to your website and finish the job, you are just wasting your time and effort.

Do not stuff your blog with keywords. They must flow through the content naturally or people will see the blog as nothing more than a piece of marketing material. Quality marketing does not appear to be marketing and a sales pitch should never sound like a sales pitch. The readers of your blog should be interested in the content and never feel as though they are being marketed to or you will lose them.

If you learn these mistakes and avoid them like the plague, you will increase the traffic to your website and gain the business that you want and need. It is very competitive online and avoiding these mistakes will avoid some very costly mistakes.

Photo Credits: SuziJane

Originally posted 2009-06-17 05:23:35. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

Reasons to Start Blogging

typeIn the 1990′s people started to set up websites know as web logs, a term which has been colloquially evolved into the term blog. A blog is a internet website where users post regular article, providing commentary, information, news, and various other forms of posts. Why do individuals start blogging? Below are listed a small sampling of the reasons that people get into blogging.

For your Business –

After the wave of the blogs started to hit the internet, corporations and other companies saw the potential to be closer to their customers. As a result, companies started to form blogs which would provide news about what is going on in the company and products that are soon to be released. Comments on the blog allow a dialog to form between the consumer and company, giving real time feedback to a company regarding its products and giving the consumer a feeling of being close to the company.

For your Career -

Many blogger start their blog with the intent of making money off of it. The primary vehicle for this monetary gain is advertising revenue. When a blog is doing well, advertisements on the site will give the site owner money for every click on the ad. Even if the blog owner will only have one in a thousand visitors click on an ad, given that some blogs experience millions of hits a day. This can add up really quickly, especially if the blog owner is maintaining multiple blogs.

As a Hobby -

A lot of blog owners are not in it to make money or promote their company. Some are in it because they have a hobby and would like to share their experiences. Model builders, athletes, board game enthusiasts, these individuals can share their hobbies, informing others while learning from visitors to the site. Site owners can show off their talents, which can lead to job opportunities for the blog owner in their field.

To spread Information -

Some blog owners are in it to inform their readers, by collecting information from many other sites. These sites will collect information from a number of web sources all related to a common theme. This allows other users a central hub within which to obtain information from many different sources, tailored to a central theme or field of interest. These bloggers may hold other reasons as well, but their passion with respect to their chosen field.

For Personal Reasons -

Another good reason to blog is for personal reasons. There are a number of blogging platforms that are ideal for personal blogging, like LiveJournal for example. Personal blogging is blogging about your daily life, relationships, dreams, beliefs, worries and other subjects relating to your existence. Personal blogging doesn’t involve selling products or pushing brands, but rather is just about sharing yourself with your readers.

Photo Credits: 1

Originally posted 2009-02-03 07:45:03. Republished by Blog Post Promoter