The Spacer Block is super easy to use and it is a very useful block to have.
Use these Blocks to add an adjustable amount of empty space between blocks. They are a great way to create padding and white space on pages and blog posts. You can add a Spacer Block anywhere: between paragraph blocks, image blocks, between an image and a paragraph, etc…
An “avatar” is an image that represents you online—a little picture that appears next to your name when you interact with websites.
A Gravatar is a Globally Recognized Avatar. You upload it and create your profile just once, and then when you participate in any Gravatar-enabled site, your Gravatar image will automatically follow you there.
Gravatar is a free service for site owners, developers, and users. It is automatically included in every WordPress.com account.
The Blog Subscriptions Jetpack Widget is easy to use and can easily bring you leads.
A popular method for gathering leads is encouraging visitors to subscribe to your site. This way, they’ll receive notifications whenever you post new content. Users can subscribe through the Subscriptions Widget.
This ensures that your site visitors won’t miss your latest posts. When they receive notifications that you’ve published new content, they’ll be more likely to keep you top-of-mind when they’re ready to make purchases.
How to go about it?
Go to your Admin Area > Appearance > Widgets
scroll down the widgets list to the ‘Blog Subscriptions Jetpack Widget
Drag the ‘Blog Subscriptions Jetpack’ Widget to the right hand side (and drop this widget in the correct sidebar). Fill in details.
In my case security from cyber attack is very important as in the past four years I lost two of my websites to hacking and last week I almost lost the entire content in my hard drive. A proper website can take months or even years to create – this means much time and money.
Many of us have heard cases of friends whose websites were hacked and their clients were receiving invoices from the hackers.
Once someone hacks your email he/ she has access to your mailing lists and in some cases to all your computer files as well.
Whenever a hosting company tells you that they will back-up your website – take that statement with a pinch of salt. Yahoo, my hosting company at the time was unable to recover my websites. Also, the back-up I had, was not effective. I will mention about an incredibly effective backup plugin later in this article.
Protect your Computer
Protect your computer from Malware. There are various reputable brands, Malwarebytes being one of the most popular. If you opt for the free version ensure that you do a weekly scan.
Anti-virus: Again there are a couple of good brands Kaspersky being one of the best. A great feature of Kaspersky is the fact that it shows you if a website is not safe to visit. My friend Niren Singh is using AVG Premium and he is very happy with their service.
Use an USB Flash Drive or some other easy, reliable storage solution. Install Cobian backup and have all your computer’s content transferred to your flash drive (or other reliable storage device) automatically and do this regularly.
Protect your email
Activate ‘two-step verification’ for your email account. What this means is that additionally to entering the password you must tap on your smartphone to access your email on your computer.
Change your password regularly. A note from my friend Andrew Gibb: “I’ve learnt that long passwords are strong passwords, that special characters (like: !@#+-_ etc), numbers and mixed case (UpPeR and LoWeR) are important but not as important as longer passwords. Remember if you think that you’re going to forget a password, write it down and store it in a safe place – it’s not often that crooks steal physical documents”.
Protect your WordPress Website
Ensure you have a website that starts with https://. If your website starts with ‘http://’ change to ‘https:// immediately!
On a weekly basis go to your ‘installed plugins’ and update any plugin that needs updating – this takes a few seconds to do.
Install and enable ‘VaultPress’ – the best back-up plugin there is (it only costs US$5/ month) and you will sleep easy. This plugin backs up your entire website every 24 hours and should your website be hacked you can restore your entire website at a touch of a button.
Your Developer/ Local IT Store
Keeping your computer, email and website safe is something you can do yourself. Additionally, keep a friendly relationship with your Developer or the Technical person at your local IT store as they are well-equipped to assist you in an emergency.
For many years, WordPress.com has been a simple way for people to create their own beautiful WordPress website in minutes.
But that simplicity came with a tradeoff — WordPress.com did not offer built-in support for the thousands of third-party plugins and themes that helped make WordPress the world’s largest and most open web publishing platform.
Now, we’ve made a significant change to the WordPress.com Business plan: you can access and add third-party plugins and themes built by the WordPress community. It’s the simplicity, speed, and expert support that you’ve always loved about WordPress.com, plugged in.
People love WordPress because it is totally customizable. With support for plugins and third-party themes, WordPress.com Business users will be able to connect their sites to great email and social media tools, ecommerce solutions, publishing and subscription services, and more.
This is a big step for us, and there’s a lot more work to do — over the coming weeks and months, we’re going to be working with partners and developers to help make the experience even easier for you to install and use these plugins and themes on WordPress.com.
And every WordPress.com Business user gets real-time concierge support – live chat with one of our Happiness Engineers and we can help you make the most of these new features.
WordPress is the world’s most popular web platform, and we’re proud to keep this community growing and thriving. Thanks for your continued support.
Starting a blog for the first time is an amazing, yet intimidating experience.
Thinking that people are actually going to read – and even share – something you wrote. It’s unlike any other feeling I can describe.
But it’s not all rainbows and butterflies. Starting a blog is hard work, and there are a lot of pitfalls along the way. Especially if it’s your first time. So many pitfalls, in fact, that we’ve come up with a full list of 44 things we wish we knew before starting our first blogs. That way, you don’t have to make these mistakes yourself!
But who are “we” exactly, right? Well, this post is a group effort. It features three bloggers chipping in and sharing their best advice on the topic.
So grab a coffee and get cozy, we’re about to review everything we’ve learned in the past 5+ years. Enjoy!
Jetpack 5.2 brings you a brand new Contact Form experience, a better explanation of recommended features, and several performance improvements.
New Contact Form
Jetpack’s Contact Form for WordPress is one of our most popular free features. And with good reason: it’s the simplest and most effective way of enabling your readers to get in touch with you be it for praise, complaints, requests or suggestions.
And now we’ve made it much simpler and faster to use.
[Click on a screenshot to enlarge it]
The next time you add a contact form to a page on your site you will see a new visual interface right inside the editor instead of a popup. Enjoy a full editing experience including adding and customizing fields and labels, re-ordering them by dragging, and easily setting email subject lines and recipients.
To edit, simply click on the form itself, and hit the “edit” icon. You can edit or remove the existing fields, or add new ones by going to the bottom of the form and clicking “add field.”
Click on the contact form and then the “Edit” icon in order to add new, change the order of, or delete fields in your form.
Simply drag and drop your fields to organize their order the way you want them. Click “Update Form” at the bottom when you’re done to save your changes.
Click “Add Field” at the bottom of your new contact form to add new fields. Click “Update Form” to save your changes.
When you install Jetpack on a new site, Jetpack recommends activating certain popular features that are most valued by users.
Jetpack has now improved this experience to better showcase and explain what the features and how they benefit your WordPress site.
Jetpack has also streamlined and reduced weight (file size) of the plugin as well as fixed bugs and introduced enhancements for stability. All these are under the hood ensuring a smoother Jetpack functioning with each version.
Full Changelog and Thanks
The changelog provides the full list of updates and changes in this release and if you have feedback please get in touch as always.
Alexandru Bucur, Anthony, Artur Piszek, Ben Lowery, Brandon Kraft, Daniel Walmsley, Derek Smart, Donncha Ó Caoimh, Drew Butler, Elio Rivero, Eric Binnion, Filipe Varela, George Stephanis, Igor Zinovyev, Marko Andrijasevic, Michael Arestad, Michael Turk, Miguel Lezama, Mohammad Jangda, Payton Swick, Richard Muscat, Rob Landers, Stephen Edgar, Thomas Guillot.
15 Ways to Get High-Quality Backlinks to Your WordPress Site
Do you remember when black hat SEO was a major problem? Google eventually caught on to these unethical SEO tactics employed by shady (and, let’s be honest, lazy) people, so it may not have had a chance to get too close to you. Nevertheless, if you’ve ever had a client ask if you knew where they could buy links from, that’s definitely a remnant of those black hat SEO days—and something you want to stay away from at all costs.
I think the worst part about black hat SEO was the aftermath. It’s not like building up backlinks was the problem. It was the manner in which people acquired those backlinks that was, since they basically tricked the search algorithms into rewarding quantity over quality.
Being a few years away from the pervasiveness of black hat SEO abuses, I think it’s time for us all to get back in the saddle and get over that fear that Backlinks = Bad. We know that search engines recognize a strong network of backlinks as a signal of authority (even if they won’t admit it). It’s just a matter of knowing how to gain those links through genuine link-building strategies.
In this article, I want to talk about what high-quality backlinks are and how to go about building up a strong network of high-quality backlinks to improve your site’s search ranking, all while still staying in the good graces of the search engines and your visitors.
The Various Ways to Use Links to Improve SEO
Let’s start with the basics. There are typically three kinds of links you’re interested in when building a WordPress site:
Internal links connect readers of your site with other pages of content within the site. This keeps them moving through related topic after related topic, which in turn helps demonstrate your knowledge and expertise.
External links connect readers of your site with other websites. But why would you ever want to provide a link that could potentially push a visitor off your site? Well, it’s usually because you want to give a source credit for information you’ve included on your site. You know this back from high school. Quotes, statistics, and original research should always be cited. It’s also good for improving the user experience when you suggesting they do something and then provide them with a quick link to follow through on that action.
Which brings me to backlinks. These are links that point back to your site, but appear on other websites. Let’s say you published a hilarious infographic on the differences between dating in the ‘90s versus dating in the ‘10s. You may find that a whole bunch of dating sites, women’s and men’s e-magazines, and maybe even Buzzfeed want to embed a copy of it on their blogs. In turn, they’ll likely give your site credit with a backlink. (Basically, an external link, but in reverse.)
Internal and external links are both important for creating a strong impression on your WordPress site. However, high-quality backlinks are even more important as they demonstrate to search engines (and readers) that you’re a trusted authority around the web, and that your content is so good that others can’t help but drive their own traffic to it. Of course, these backlinks are only going to be beneficial if:
They’re genuine (meaning you didn’t pay someone to plant them).
They’re relevant and, consequently, drive relevant traffic to your site.
They come from reputable sources.
It’s this last point that can give marketers some pause since backlinks from websites with poor reputations can negatively affect SEO. So, if there were ever a reason not to want to actively work on building a network of backlinks to your site, that would be the one caveat. However, it should be easy enough to work around this. So long as you’re creating connections with reputable and high-authority websites, and paying attention to where your backlinks come from, you should be fine.
15 Ways to Get High-Quality Backlinks to Your WordPress Site
According to a 2015 study done by Moz, they found a very strong correlation between top ranked sites on Google and external links. Of the top 50 search results they assessed, they found that 99.2% of them had at least one backlink. While it’s not impossible to rank without a backlink, the evidence suggests that if you want to make that coveted first page of search results, you need at least one high-quality backlink.
Okay, so now that we got that out of the way…
We know that backlinks are awesome for SEO. We also know that we need to be careful when going about obtaining them. Here are some tips on how you can inspire popular, high-authority, and well-trusted websites to link to your website:
#1. Write Actionable Blog Posts
Well-written and informative blog posts are awesome. It’s basically like you’re giving away free lessons to your visitors in exchange for their patronage. However, if you want to motivate them to link back to your site within their own content, you have to give them something more. Blog posts that provide actionable tips—usually in list format or a step-by-step guide—will give others the opportunity to leverage your expert guidance for their own benefit.
#2. Write Guest Articles
This is really no different than writing content for your site. The only difference is that you have to follow someone else’s guidelines before it gets published. If you do go this route, don’t stress over embedding links to your site within the article; in fact, most outlets frown upon that. Simply just ask if you can put one link in your bio. If the site has a high enough profile, that one link is all you’ll need anyway.
#3. Blog on Third-Party Sites
Perhaps the best place to put well-thought-out and informative posts is on third-party blogging sites. Obviously, that’s not to say these sites wouldn’t benefit from how-to articles. It’s all about creating content for the right place and the right time, and these sites are usually about straight-up thought leadership content. LinkedIn and Medium are good ones to look into.
#4. Develop Long-form Content
Writing a piece of content that discusses the merits of adopting an older dog is nice when you want to connect with your audience, but writing a guide on the 100 ways to help an older dog adapt to its surroundings would most likely elicit a stronger response. If you really want people to link to your content, create something truly of value. Long-form content like e-books, white papers, and manuals work best for this.
#5. Create Tutorials
Another way you could create helpful content others are dying to link to is by developing tutorials. Whether you’re a WordPress developer who recorded a live WordPress training session or a web designer who has created an infographic on the 15 tips for mastering the latest design trend, these creative tutorials that come straight from the expert are always an attractive sell.
#6. Write a Case Study
Before I write any new content, the first thing I do is search for statistical evidence of the point I want to make. The way I see it, my audience will have an easier time listening to me if I point them to solid proof.
That’s why case studies are so powerful. Find a client’s before-and-after success story, write it up with tons of visuals and statistics, and publish on your site (with client’s consent of course). If your case study makes a solid argument for why CTAs belong above the fold, others may find your data valuable enough to link to and use in their own work.
#7. Showcase Partner Logos
This is one of those tit-for-tat situations, but nevertheless is one that will work if you get a valuable backlink out of it. If your business partners with high-profile companies, talk to them about showing off your logos on each other’s websites.
#8. Provide Reviews for Others
Yes, it can be annoying to receive a testimonial or review request from someone when you’re in the middle of a rush rebranding job and barely have time to stop and collect last month’s invoices. The next time this happens, however, I’d urge you to just say “yes”. In exchange for a testimonial or review, you can ask them to include a link back to your site.
#9. Get Your Link Out on Social
Although Google has made it clear they don’t (or, more accurately, can’t) use social media as a ranking factor for websites, that doesn’t mean social can’t be used for backlinking opportunities. You can:
Add your site’s URL to all your social media profiles—for your company, yourself, and maybe even encourage employees to do so as well.
Promote your content and business’ products or services through posts on social.
Create videos, slideshows, and other visual content for niche social media sites (like YouTube or Instagram) and include a link back to your site in the description.
#10. Show Off on Social
While you work on generating your own backlinks, don’t forget to encourage others to share your content as well. The worst way to do this? “Hey guys, I just published this article. Please share it for me!” The best way to do this? Talk about topics on social that are relevant to your business. Trust me, people will take notice—especially if you’re sharing their content and tagging them. Quid pro quo is alive and well on social media.
#11. Update Your Gravatar
Did you know that Gravatar is part of the Automattic family? This means that any website—including your own WordPress site—linked to Gravatar can pull in the profile you’ve created there. This ensures that your website URL will show up on any site where your Gravatar bio does (like when you comment on another blog).
#12. Create Profiles on Q&A Sites
As a WordPress professional, you know how strong the community is around it. There are a number of opportunities to get involved with that community and to lend your input when your expertise is needed. Sites like Stack Overflow, Quora, the WordPress forums, and, of course, the WPMU DEV community.
#13. Upload Your Portfolio
Do you have a design portfolio or something free to give away like a plugin or wireframe kit? Hop on sites like Dribbble, create a profile (with a link to your site), and start sharing.
#14. Get Interviewed
Are you a local expert? Or perhaps you developed a new technique or product that others would find valuable? Maybe you just helped a major Fortune 500 revamp their website? Whatever waves you’re making in your part of the world, use it to get interviewed by podcasts, local new sites, or niche bloggers. In exchange for the interview, they’ll likely give your site a shout-out.
#15. Issue a Press Release
Along that same vein, if you have something truly newsworthy happen to you (like one of your sites won an Awwward or you just sold a million copies of your plugin), issue a press release about it. And not just on your website. Use a service like PRweb so it’ll get picked up by other news channels that will link back to your site, too.
Once you’ve got this backlink train in motion, don’t forget to review the backlinks coming in to your site. You can find a list of these by going to Google Search Console; look under Search Traffic > Links to Your Site. If you find any questionable links (meaning they’re irrelevant or come from inappropriate sites), you can disconnect them.
Black hat SEO made things a little hairy for marketers and web developers for a while. But now that those shady SEO tactics are, for the most part, gone, we can focus on using positive link building strategies for our sites.A strong network of high-authority backlinks can speak volumes to the credibility of your business, so take some time to think about how best to get your site in front of others and motivate them to link back to it from their own sites.
This is another Wordfence public service announcement (PSA) that describes new WannaCry ransomware variants that have emerged in the past few hours and describes how to protect yourself against the WannaCry ransomware, also known as the WannaCrypt ransomware. Read the full article >
Useful WordPress Plugins to Integrate Your Site with Google Services 2017
Figuring out how to integrate your WordPress website with a couple of useful Google services? It should not be difficult! There are lots of reliable WordPress plugins that are ready to connect your site with popular Google services. A very interesting article by MottoPress’ Ann Taylor. Read the full article >
Photopress is a simple WordPress theme for Photographers, Designers & just about any creative out there. Learn more >
11 Examples of Divi Small Business Websites
The world is filled with small businesses and there are more started every day. With that comes the constant need for new websites. There are lots of small businesses websites built with Divi to provide design inspiration for your next project. In this article we will take a look at 11 examples of Divi small business websites to help you with design ideas for your next Divi project. Read the full article >