Archive for WordPress

How To Publish Your First WordPress Post

How To Publish Your First WordPress Post
It’s an exciting day when you are ready to write your first post on your new website! Every great journey starts with the first step.  I’m going to walk you through how to add new content to your blog on your WordPress website.

There’s a difference between posts and pages as I’ve pointed out previously yet the process of adding content to posts and pages is very similar. To keep things simple, let’s start with a post.

Some still get confused thinking a blog and a website are two different entities. They were in the days before WordPress became so popular and easy to use… when websites were created using complicated software, languages or code. Nowadays your blog is an integrated part of your WordPress website.

Your pages have your evergreen (or static or seldom changed) content and your blog is where your fresh content is organized via your posts and categories.

Your posts appear on your site in chronological order so your readers will find your most recent one first.

Your categories organize your posts so your readers can find what they are looking for easily and, I’ve read, also help the search engines. As you write more and more posts, you’ll see the importance and value of organizing your posts into their relevant categories.

Think of your blog like a library: all the books on dolphins will be on the one shelf and all the books on sharks will be on another shelf. The same principle works on your website: all your posts on leadership will be placed in one category and all your posts on public speaking in another. Unlike a library though, your post can be placed in more than one category. For example, if your post was about public speaking for leaders… you get the idea.

Some like to write their posts directly in the WordPress dashboard of their website and others prefer to write their post in a word processor and copy and paste into WordPress.

To create your post, go to Posts (in the left column of your Dashboard) and Add New and you’ll get to WordPress Visual Editor. You can start writing or, if you’ve written your post elsewhere, just copy and paste.

Tip: If you are copy and pasting from a Microsoft program, use the Paste Text from Word button.

If you mouse over the buttons in the Visual Editor, you see a description of what each button does. Or take a look at the graphic of the WordPress Visual Editor below:

How To Publish Your First WordPress PostEnlarge image

You can format your post using the Visual Editor. A few pointers:

1. The button known as the Kitchen Sink, when clicked, will reveal or hide the row below.

2. The Text Style window has a drop down and this is where you’ll find the H tags or Heading tags. It’s a good idea to decide on a style for your posts and keep it consist through out your website. Heading 1 through to Heading 6 – in most themes headings within a post or page will start at Heading 2 or 3 (H2 or H3 tags), going down to H6. The higher the value, the more important a search engine will consider it, but remember that H1 is usually reserved for the site title at the top of the page, and H2 for the post or page’s title. I usually use the H3 tag for sub headings.

3. Use Bold and Italic in moderation. (Unless, like I’m using in this post, their use makes your content clearer.) Your most important consideration always – keep asking yourself – am I expressing myself clearly?

4. Save your work as you go using Save Draft in the top right column. When you are ready to post click on the Publish button. Once you have published you can always go back and edit to make changes.

5. Read your post back to yourself out loud. Are you writing as you speak? Have you found all the typos?

Don’t want to overwhelm you as your get started with your first post. So will leave you to dive in and start sharing your knowledge and expertise with your readers. More tips and tactics on posting coming up in future posts. Keep focused on the value of the content you are giving to your community. You will master these steps quickly the more you do them. Happy blogging!

About Tina Cook

Web Designer, Social Media and Online Marketing
Coach. Be more profitable online with a high performing website designed to reflect your special talents and personality.
Increase your income with rock solid marketing strategies
and the power of social media and online video.

Drum Roll for Release of WordPress 3.5

Drum Roll for New WordPress 3.5 Release by Tina Cook

The brilliant WordPress wizards have pipped Santa to bring us a bright bundle of new toys just in time for the Holidays! The new WordPress 3.5 was released last week and nicknamed “Elvin” in honor of drummer Elvin Jones.

Topping the list of the new version of the blogging platform’s goodies is the new media manager which makes uploading images much smoother.

Media galleries are also much improved and quicker to create.

The WordPress dashboard is beautiful with super sharp graphics and is Retina-ready.

And many more improvements, most of which are under the hood.

Many thanks to the long list of WordPress contributors and wishes to you all for the Happiest of Holidays!

Check out the overview in this video created by WordPress:

If you’d like to read a detailed breakdown of all the new features, take a look at WPCandy.com’s great post “Everything we know about WordPress 3.5”

TIP: Before you upgrade your WordPress, be sure to do a full backup of your website. The best plugin to help you do this is BackupBuddy. It’s so important to backup your website regularly and automatically.

About Tina Cook

Web Designer, Social Media and Online Marketing
Coach. Be more profitable online with a high performing website designed to reflect your special talents and personality.
Increase your income with rock solid marketing strategies
and the power of social media and online video.

The Difference between Posts and Pages in WordPress Websites Built for Business

he Difference between Posts and Pages in WordPress Websites Built for Business-TinaCook.tv

It’s important for you to have a clear understanding of the difference between posts and pages as you begin to master your WordPress website and it grows to serve you as your online business center and top marketing strategy.

Broadly speaking, websites in the days of Web 1.0, were mostly static pages of information and portfolio sites. Everything changed when the Web evolved to 2.0 with two-way communication and blogging. Nowadays the trend is to integrate your blog with your website using WordPress. If you still need convincing about the advantages of WordPress, please take a look at my previous post.

Posts

Posts are the fresh pieces of content, like articles, that appear on your blog of your WordPress website in reverse chronological order (i.e. the most recent ones first). They are usually marked with a date. (Have you noticed too how many of the top bloggers have removed the dates of their posts though they are still published in chronological order?)

Posts are organized by categories and the key content can be highlighted by tags. Categories and tags make it easy for your visitors to navigate your website and help the search engines to understand your content and so improve the relevance of search results. Posts are also displayed in the RSS feed of your website.

You may like to think of your post as mail stamped with a date – like sending a letter to a friend.

Think of your post as mail stamped with a date - TinaCook.tv

Pages

As your site grows into your online business center, you’ll have information that seldom needs updating, like your “Contact Us” or “Find Us” pages. These are usually the pages you’d like your visitors to access from your Home Page.

Pages are the pieces of static content that appear on your website and are not marked with a date and don’t show up in the RSS feed of your site. Some small businesses only want their website to serve as their online brochure and so they build their entire site with just pages on WordPress. Pages aren’t organized by categories or tags but can be nested via parent pages and child pages to create sub-menus. Child pages are the sub-pages that drop down under the parent page.

You may like to think of your page as the page of a book – content that has a longer shelf life.

Think of your page as the page of a book - TinaCook.tv

Those are the main differences between posts and pages on your WordPress site. Traditionally posts are used for new content and most importantly to keep your visitors returning to your site for more of your offerings and to engage with you. Whether you share your message via the written word, audio or video, the best online success strategy is to create relevant and engaging content consistently on your site. Go create, and have fun mastering your WordPress website! The more you post and publish, the easier it gets. And the more rewarding.

About Tina Cook

Web Designer, Social Media and Online Marketing
Coach. Be more profitable online with a high performing website designed to reflect your special talents and personality.
Increase your income with rock solid marketing strategies
and the power of social media and online video.

The Advantages of Choosing WordPress for Your Website

WordPress is King -TinaCook.tvWordPress rules as the king of the blogging platforms and content management systems! It’s the “most popular and fastest growing publishing platform on the web” confirms CrunchBase. Of the world’s top 100 blogs in Technorati’s index, a mighty 50% use WordPress and no other platform is a close second. These were the findings of a study by Pingdom completed earlier this year. Their graphic displays more of their results:

Pingdom's graphic showing WordPress is King of the Tip 100 blogs

In case you aren’t aware, there is WordPress.com which is hosted and WordPress.org which is self-hosted. You definitely want to be self-hosting your website using WordPress.org.

The advantages of using WordPress.org as your publishing platform are many:

1. Easy

It’s so easy to publish and update your content. (If you can use MS Word, you can use WordPress.) The dashboard and visual editor are very intuitive. Your blog can be integrated into your site plus it’s the best blogging solution with an advanced CMS (Content Management System).

There’s no need to learn HTML or code.

If you think of the olden days when you had to master HTML or complex programs to publish websites online, like the olden days when all meals were prepared from scratch. (Hmm, childhood memories of whiffs of freshly baked shortbread!) In those days you had to master many skills, like making your own pastry. Remember your mother or granny kneading the ingredients? Today you can buy ready-made pastry.

Packaged Pastry - The Advantages of Choosing WordPress for Your Website - TinaCook.t

A white sauce was cleverly created from just the right amount of butter, flour and milk over just the right amount of heat. Chips came from potatoes, not a frozen packet.

Chips Packet - The Advantages of Choosing WordPress for Your Website - TinaCook.tv

Very few people make their own white sauce, chips or pastry today, we buy these foods pre-packaged to save time and to make our lives easier. That’s similar to WordPress, many of the ingredients that make up the functionality of this powerful system come pre-packaged in the form of themes, widgets, plugins to save you time and to make your online life easier. And WordPress updates bring more cool and time-saving features – like the couple of clicks to create the menu for your navigation bar or being able to re-size your images.

You don’t need to be a master cook or web master to have a WordPress website.

2. It’s Free

The free open source, vast worldwide community powering WordPress continually improves the software making it more secure, adding more functionality and coolness. You’ll never be charged when you reach a certain size, it gives you access to its code and this massive open community project will continue to grow and outlive us all.

3. Good for SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

Search Engine Optimization is such a buzz word and rightly so – it’s vital that your website is found online. Many have tried to out smart Google’s algorithms and Google keeps adding checks to stop the gaming of their system of selecting which posts or pages reach the top of the search. There are multiple good strategies to improve your ranking in the search. One of the best practices is to post relevant and engaging content for your target market regularly. WordPress makes this very easy to do in many ways.

4. Flexible

You can update your website from any computer, anywhere in the world and multiple users can work on your site simultaneously. (But not on the same post or page simultaneously though WordPress warns you.)

5. Complete Control

You have complete control of your website. Other blogging platforms may place adverts on your site, may not allow you to use your site for commercial purposes and could be terminated (or be taken over.)

6. Integrate with Social Media

Thanks to the ingenuity of many developers, it is very easy to integrate your Social Media with your WordPress website and spread your marketing message further than was ever possible previously. Plus engage and talk to your visitors, prospects and customers and clients.

7. Thriving Community

There’s a thriving community of WordPress developers creating themes, free or Premium (paid for) which can be customized to enhance your branding. I use Premium themes developed by iThemes because they are totally flexible and excellent.

8. Extensive Functionality

Your website is now your business center.

Plugins make your website work for you. The plugins, free or Premium, add extensive functionality to your site. (There’s a plugin for that!) From increasing your SEO (Search Engine Optimization), to adding security features, to adding audio, a poll, to making it simple to create slideshows or photo galleries, shopping carts, forums, maps, and more.

9. Internet Compliant

WordPress adheres to all the Web Standards and keeps your website Internet compliant.

Do you use WordPress for your site? Love to hear your comments or questions.

About Tina Cook

Web Designer, Social Media and Online Marketing
Coach. Be more profitable online with a high performing website designed to reflect your special talents and personality.
Increase your income with rock solid marketing strategies
and the power of social media and online video.