Archive For: March, 2013

7 WordPress Plugins You Need For SEO & Conversion

7 WordPress Plugins You Need For SEO & Conversion

WordPress is the ubiquitous blogging platform and CMS that has driven blogging to the mainstream and made it easy as cake to get online. Of course, if you are fresh to starting out in the blogosphere, you’ll need to pay special care that you are not only putting your best foot forward – but making it easy to find you online.

SEO is a crucial ingredient to online success. In takes a few steps to build the foundation you need to get started online, but these free WordPress plugins were designed to do just that.

 

Here are 7 WordPress plugins perfect for building a solid foundation for good WordPress SEO:

WordPress SEO by Yoast

1) WordPress SEO

WordPress SEO is one of the most popular WordPress plugins for adding titles and meta descriptions to your posts. It’s also useful for those pesky themes that do not allow you to easily edit the title and meta description for your blog’s home page. The extra bonus for this plugin is it automatically creates XML sitemaps for you.

Google Analytics WordPress

2) Google Analytics For WordPress

Google analytics is the backbone of any SEO campaign. You want to monitor your progress and analyze the type of traffic you are receiving – this plugin will help you do just that. If your theme doesn’t have a default setting that allows you to embed Google analytics, this is the perfect solution.

W3 Total Cache

3) W3 Total Cache

Site speed is another aspect of good SEO. Google pays close attention to page loading times and a small part of the ranking algorithm relies on serving up web pages that load faster. This boils down to user experience. People hate slow sites. W3 Total Cache helps minimize loading times and increase server performance by caching your site.

ShareThis Social Sharing Plugin

4) ShareThis

Social media is just as much a part of SEO as link building in this day and age. You want to make your content as easy to share as possible. This plugin does just that. You can edit the configuration to work on posts and pages, plus select which social networks you would like to appear.

Hellobar WordPress Plugin

5) The Hello Bar

Chances are you’ve seen this handy WordPress plugin around the web already. If you want an example of it in action, simply look up. There you have it. This plugin is great for calling attention to specials or important information that you don’t want site visitors to miss.

Social Author Bio WordPress-Plugin

6) Social Author Bio

Bloggers are taking on the more of publisher more and more. Guest blogging is a very popular way to not only build links for your own blog, but it’s also a great way to get free content for your website, which in turn helps drive traffic and growth. This plugin allows you to easily add an author bio box to your posts and pulls the author’s image from gravatar. It also works with Google Authorship, which will help those posts stand out in the search results.

Magic Action Box Plugin

7) Magic Action Box

This plugin is extremely neat. There is both a free and paid version. It allows you to create a unique call-to-action on every one of your posts. If you don’t know how to code – or hate designing different forms all of the time – this allows you to easily create CTAs that will help you grab readers email addresses after they have read you post.

 

 

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How Do I Get More Traffic To My Blog? (5 Easy Steps)

How Do I Get More Traffic To My Blog? (5 Easy Steps)
If you are on a mission to get more traffic to your blog, you’re in luck. You’re also on the right track. In order to be successful online, you have to focus on creating content and generating interest in your blog.

Talk about how to get more traffic to your blog and some people mistakenly think you need a degree in statistical engineering, but that just isn’t the case. There may be some mildly technical aspects to growing your blog, but essentially the number one thing to consider is value. Ask yourself: is what I am blogging valuable to the people who frequent my site?

As bloggers, we put heart and soul into the articles we write and we want people to see them. We want our readers to take away something that will make their blog, their business, and even their lives, to some degree, better.

With that in mind I’ve put together 5 Steps to Get More Blog Traffic. If a blogger will simply follow these five steps, their blog will begin to get more visitors in a short time.

Get More Blog Traffic – Step One, Attract the Giants

This first step is obvious. If you want people to come by the old homestead, you’ve got to have something to feed them. That means regular posts. Daily posting is ideal. People have to know that if they make the effort of stopping by your blog, they will be rewarded by something new and interesting to think about.

And…if you want really good traffic your posts need to be really good. That means being clear about who your visitors are, and what kind of information will make their lives better. Check out the sites that social media elites in your industry frequent. Get a sense of what they are mining. When you are clear on what people want, especially the ones with a following, and start providing it, you’ll begin to see an avalanche of visitors to your blog. The more the big bloggers visit, the more their readers will hear about you and visit in turn.

Get More Blog Traffic – Step Two, Frequent Forums

Once you are clear about what your readers want, the next step just makes sense. Go to forums where the big boys and girls are discussing your product or service. Use forum marketing to build your reputation and get people interested in your site. You don’t have to engage right away. Find out what people are concerned about, excited about, and learning about. Get a sense of their struggles. The things you learn in a forum are worth their weight in gold.

When you know where your industry is going, you’ll begin to engage in more meaningful ways and attract a larger following. What other industry experts are focusing on will enable you to hone both your business and your blog. Simply mention your blog when you do comment. Word will get out.

You may also receive invitations to guest blog for other up-and-comers. Do it and do it well. Reputation is everything. Look at it like money in the bank accruing interest.

Get More Blog Traffic – Step Three, SEO Properly

Smart keywords are a lot more successful than sheer numbers of them. In fact, experts agree that you really want no more than 1% to 2% of your overall article word count in keywords. Sprinkle them throughout the article and especially in the title and close. It’s always important to keep SEO in mind.

Keywords that are slightly unique are better. Don’t mindlessly follow the ones used by number one spot of a Google search. Some of those words can be done to death. Smart people are looking for fresher soil to dig in.

Get More Blog Traffic – Step Four, Get on the Top Social Media

Social media is a great tool but keep a tight rein on it. It can burn up your time if you are not careful. Set aside a half hour during the day for social media—no more, no less.

I get more ideas from Twitter in one day than I did in a month of plain blog hopping. Citizens of the Twitternet are focused, succinct and resourceful. If you find yourself a twitter giant, follow, follow, follow…where they lead. The time-saving is exponential.

Facebook can also be a happy hunting ground when you have liked the expert pages. Some companies use them for forums or to help neophytes learn the ropes in a network. Also, if there is an industry giant you are following, useful nuggets might appear within their pages. The key is consistency.

Like Twitter, Facebook is also a great way to reach out with your blog to a different population of readers. It is definitely a way to build a following when you publish new posts on your Facebook page.

Google+ is a great way to stay in touch with key people in your industry. If you’ve liked someone on Facebook and are following him/her on Twitter, another logical step is to add him/her on Google plus. Some really great one-on-one interaction can happen here. It is also a super way to refer people.

LinkedIn is an invaluable for letting people know who you are, and what your business is about. It is a place to shine. LinkedIn is an avenue to access industry forums and newsletters. These newsletters show interesting slants on global industry developments and publish forward-looking articles. Put your best foot forward here. It might take some time to update and upgrade, but the time spent making your profile the best will yield great returns.

Get More Blog Traffic – Step Five, Install and Check Google Analytics

Google and Bing Analytics are great tools for seeing what subjects are draw and keep people on your blog. One I was a major contributor for did a Friday article about top homes in our city. Visits ballooned on Fridays. We weren’t just seeing interest from prospective buyers but other realtors, too. Since other realtors bring prospective buyers to homes, it also grew the business. Analytics gave us a true sense of where to spend the most time.

Building your blog, like building your business, is a numbers game. The more people you attract, the more likely you are to engage someone in conversation and convert blog traffic into business.

To recap five steps on How To Get More Blog Traffic:

  • Attract the Giants—provide something wonderful to reward visitors and encourage their return
  • Jump on forums—find out where your industry is heading
  • Optimize your keywords—less is more, only 1-2% concentration, smarter is better
  • Become savvy on social media tools—to connect with a wide range of people and follow your industry
  • Use analytics—real time indicators of what is drawing your readers
  • Stay consistent and you’ll know exactly how to get more blog traffic. Your efforts will yield the results you are looking for.

Got some ideas? Add them in the comments!

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12 Forum Marketing Secrets That Work

Forum Marketing Secrets

Forum marketing involves reaching out and engaging with the right audience. Of course, you want exposure, but there is a careful line to walk. You want to gain exposure and establish yourself as an authority, but you don’t want to be annoying. Forcing your brand down people’s throat simply for a link will get you no where. So, where do you start? That is the question a lot of ask when we first start out trying to build a website or blog.

It doesn’t have to be hard. If you’ve been snooping the web looking for some ways to promote your website, chances are you’ve heard about forum marketing. We’re here to blow the lid off the misconceptions and expose 12 forum marketing secrets that are tried and tested.

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What is Managed WordPress Hosting?

What Is Managed WordPress Hosting?
Managed WordPress hosting can be an invaluable asset to bloggers and businesses. According to the numbers from the United States Bureau of Labor and Statistics unemployment has been hovering between 8.3 and 7.8 for the past year. That does not take into account the people who are no longer claiming benefits. They estimate that 12.3 million people are out of work. Again, they base these numbers upon reported cases. Add the unreported cases and you are closer to 20% of the population. One could argue those numbers up or down on any given month but the bottom line it this: the way that America is doing business these days is shifting.

Quite a few people have begun their own businesses. I’m not talking mid-sized corporations in buildings in the golden triangle. I am talking cottage industries. In the absence of traditional opportunities, resilient free thinkers are devising other options.

Anyone who has ever tackled a startup knows you have enough to do without managing your WordPress hosting. Keeping your product or service up to date and taking good care of valuable customers is challenge enough. Because an online presence is critical for reaching the savvy consumers in today’s market, a good hosting option is worth its weight in gold. For people with an established business or blog, managed WordPress hosting makes sense.

WordPress has become a household word these days. They have built and maintained an excellent reputation throughout the blogging and business communities. If you have ever used it, you know they have made their product simple. They even offer format-adjusting templates so your site is just as accessible on a smart phone as it is on your laptop.
In this article I’m going to focus on some of the reasons why managed WordPress hosting is a good idea.

The First Benefit of Managed WordPress Hosting

Managed WordPress hosting offers ease of use. If you are like my friend Jane, just the sound of the words “new technology” raises the hair on the back of your neck. It isn’t that Jane is technically challenged. It’s just that she’d rather think about other things—like reaching more customers and writing her daily blog. Happily, Jane is not stuck. Managed WordPress hosting provides a solution that leaves her no worries. You can expect top-notch service without the headaches with managed WordPress hosting. Besides, doing your own updates and backups suck.

The Second Benefit to Managed WordPress Hosting

Managed WordPress hosting offers security. When hackers are on the prowl, managed WordPress hosting providers are already on the job, filtering and scrubbing bad traffic and removing malware. That means peace of mind. You can focus on your business, and your customers can access your site without lockout problems.

The Third Benefit to Managed WordPress Hosting

Managed WordPress hosting offers speed. A managed WordPress hosting provider understands the impact of widgets, and knows how to best configure plugins on your site for speed and performance.

The Fourth Benefit to Managed WordPress Hosting

Managed WordPress hosting offers hassle free webpage ownership. That means that whenever software updates are needed, server maintenance or replacement become necessary, or when it is time to backup your site, specialists jump into action and you can do other things.

The Fifth Benefit to Managed WordPress Hosting

Managed WordPress Hosting offers painless startup. Whether you are looking to start a site or move your current site, managed WordPress hosting providers have clear affordable plans and simple step-by-step instructions so you can get started right away. They’ll even set up your site for you if you just don’t have the time or inclination—for free.
The idea of doing business these days without a website isn’t even a consideration. A good website gives potential clients and customers a clear picture of who you are. While managed WordPress hosting isn’t a panacea for the economic troubles in our nation, it is allowing people to get their websites running and their focus back on business.

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