WordPress SEO

Wordpress SEO

Generating search traffic to your website is a very important part of attracting new viewers and building an audience. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. Search engines like Google and Bing send robots across the web that index websites and the content on them. If you’re creating content, its extremely important to understand how to write in a manner that helps the search engines in indexing your site.

The Importance of Good Content

Before we get into all of the possibilities of writing for SEO its really important to state that if you’re not creating interesting content, any SEO is a waste of time. If you’re writing strictly for the search engines you’re going to run into 2 problems. First, if people don’t find your site helpful, useful or entertaining then they have no reason to return (or read anything for that matter). Secondly, search engines use extremely advanced algorithms in how they rank pages. Last summer we saw some major updates to the Google search engine that are smart enough to understand people who are cheating the system.

Having said all of that, recognize that SEO is a separate task to be worked on after you’ve made great content. The web is full of people trying to compete by cheating. Just start by making stuff so awesome that people are seeking it out – search engines or not. You’ll find an audience.

WordPress SEO Concepts

Keywords are simply groups of words that people might use to search for (potentially) your content. If you write an article on how to change oil in a car, you could reduce this down to “how to change oil” or “automotive oil change” as possible keywords. Its very important that these words are used prominently in several places in any article:

1) The Article Title
2) Search Engine Description
3) H2 tags inside your article
4) Alt Tags in images
5) Often use of keywords in your article
6) Keywords in the Permalink of the web page

You’ll sometimes hear people telling you to use tags on your page as well. Its generally believed that search engines don’t weigh heavily on blog page tags because its far to easy to cheat the system with. BUT if you pay attention to and address the 6 areas above, you’ll create very good SEO balanced content.

WordPress handles most of these points naturally for you. As long as you are writing decent content and paying mind to things like the H2 tags, titles, actual writing, etc. Remember to take the extra minute to label images – particularly alt tags. Most writers get lazy about these things – its a good place you can stay competitive.


Make sure you’ve gone under WordPress settings and selected an option for permalinks. The best is the last one which automatically puts your page title in the link. You can edit these down if they get really long, but its better to have http://yoursite.com/how-to-change-oil than http://yoursite.com/?p=32


There are a few free third party plugins that will help things along as well. If you go under plugins -> install plugins, you can search for these fairly easily.

1) Yoast SEO Plugin

This is my personal favorite. It adds a ton of functionality to the bottom of each post. It allows you to change the title and SEO descriptions without changing the core WordPress post which can be extremely useful. It also gives you a step by step analysis of the post to grade its SEO compatibility. This makes it really nice to have as a checklist. Add in direct links to the Google and Bing Keyword Tools and you’ve got a very robust plugin that will improve your SEO techniques very quickly.

My only complaint about Yoast is that it starts making it too tempting to write your article for search engines and not people. This can potentially damage the quality and usefulness of your post and ultimately your blog. For this reason I recommend a second plugin which is very good as well.

2) WordPress All In One SEO Pack

This plugin is equally good in features, but does’t have the checklist stuff or the keyword tool links. Its just as good a plugin and might be better for people who want to actually improve their SEO without the distraction of writing for the search engine itself.

So try one or both of these plugins and start optimizing your content. Remember all this stuff takes a while to get a feel for and for the search engines to index and rank your content. Start using them, get better with them and remember that this is all icing. Your cake needs to be the real winner so concentrate on articles first. Don’t let the SEO undermine the awesomeness you are trying to create.

How To Setup WordPress For Easy Updates Remotely

How To Install WordPress for Remote Management

If you manage even one WordPress site, you’re going to have to deal with updates. WordPress is really good at releasing updates which is great from a security and software feature point of view. The downside is making sure your websites are up to date. This becomes particularly time consuming if you’re dealing with multiple WordPress installs across multiple servers. This last year I discovered a service called WP Remote that has changed this for me. In this article, I’ll explain what it is, how to setup WordPress installs and simplify the maintenance of keeping WordPress installs up to date.

How To Setup WordPress for WP Remote

How To Install WordPress For Remote ManagementWP Remote is a free service from Human Made Limited. It allows you to manage all core, plugin and theme updates in one place. After you sign up for an account you’ll add your WordPress ULR’s to your dashboard. WP Remote will require a plugin to be installed on each of your WordPress sites. Once you’ve listed the site and installed the plugin on your remote site, you’ll need a simple API authentication stored and you’re ready to go. WP Remote can now monitor the website and tell you if any updates are available. You can simply check in here once in a while and do your updates all at one time from one page or you can select what you want to update. This is important for people developing their own plugins or on production environments where updates have to be tested.

The other great thing about WP Remote is that it will perform site backups. Most people don’t keep regular backups and if they ever had a bad server crash they could loose all their content. Its not a huge chance of this happening, but its one of those things where if it ever did happen it would be devastating.

I schedule time once a month to backup my WP installs through WP Remote. It just takes a second to do each one. Basically you hit the button – the dial spins and then it downloads a zip file of all of your site files and a copy of your MySQL database. Amazingly simple and beautiful. I’ll take all of my site backups and store them on Amazon S3. Its a cheap way to store them since they’re almost never downloaded.

As great as the backup service is, I have to say it would be amazing to have a way to automate this. I would gladly pay for this service as it is, but if they ever did want to charge – this would be a feature to use as a big selling point. Backup and store the files on another server is vital. If I can do that without ever having to think about it it would be even better.

So get over and start using WP Remote. Its a great service, its free and it makes your life more simple. What’s not to like?

WordPress.com VS WordPress.org

WordPress.com VS WordPress.org

One of the biggest points of confusion people have is the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org. I think the best way to explain all of this is to back up a little bit and talk about what WordPress is exactly.

What is WordPress

WordPress is an open-source CMS platform written in PHP and MySQL by Matt Mullenweg and Mile Little. It was first released in 2003 as a fork of an older blog engine b2/cafelog with some improvements. Over the years, WordPress has evolved into arguably the most used platform for blogging and in the last few versions it has proven to be a worthy CMS for non-blog based websites. With multi-user support and extensions for BuddyPress, it has a great amount of versatility for many different options of websites and online applications as well.

Open-Source means its completely free to use. You can download the code, set it up on a server and use it to power your website and write content. Developers contribute to regular updates and upgrades including those that keep it safe and secure. Its a labor of love. So if all of this is free, what is the incentive and how would anyone make any money on a project of its size? There’s bandwidth to pay for, not to mention the time involved in keeping the software current and updated.

WordPress.com VS WordPress.org

Well there’s 2 ways to use WordPress. Yes they give it away and you can download the code at WordPress.org. They also provide WordPress.com for those who want a blog, but don’t want to deal with how to host it. The .com version is also free on the surface, but it provides a simple setup for people who want to start a blog and just go.

The money comes from the .com side. It is free, but there are limits on features and bandwidth. If your site starts getting popular, you’ll need to upgrade your account. Its still a great deal and very practical. Other features such as custom URL’s and video hosting have annual fee’s associated with them. There is a complete list of features on the WordPress.com site. Honestly, having hosted my own version of WordPress on many websites over the years, I think their prices are very fair.

So Which Should I Use?

Well its an interesting question. I think they have a great business model. There aren’t many organizations that give away their core product while doing very well on services around it. WordPress is amazing in this regard.

I would say the hosted .com version is best for those who want to customize, but don’t have the technical knowledge to make it all work. The pricing is very fair and its simple as pie to deal with. Plus you can grow your site naturally. Start it for free and when you need to add options you can do it as your popularity grows.

But for people who like to tinker and aren’t afraid of some set up and maybe some light coding – I think downloading for free on the .org site is without a doubt the way to go. You’ll be able to customize everything from the word go and you’ll get to where you want to go much faster with your site.

Having said that – yes there is a cost. The software might be free, but the services you’ll need to run it are not.

You can add these ala-carte as you need them through the .com site, but you will pay for them eventually and things like custom theming will require a service to do it at all. So what are the costs for setting it up on your own?

I recommend several things to get going quickly that won’t break the bank.

1) Hosting

I prefer Bluehost. They offer shared hosting accounts for a very low rate and do the trick just fine. You get unlimited hosting and unlimited sites. You could put many different wordpress sites all on your account and your cost per site comes down considerably. All with their own URL’s. And Bluehost offers 1-click installs which simply installs wordpress on your server with the click of a button. That’s it – couldn’t be more simple.

2) Domain Name

You’ll need to get yoursite.com – or whatever name you want to use. Keep this simple and use Hover.com. Their prices are as good as anyone else, its simple to set up and they are a great company. They don’t pay me to say this – I really love their service so I recommend them to you. Just use them – forget any of the others. Trust me – I’ve used them all.

3) Themes

If you don’t design or code, you’ll probably want a theme for your website. I recommend for people to use ThemeTrust. They have some wonderful themes, they have custom options and many of them are responsive design. Responsive design means the layout adjusts for the screen size. This means your site will look great on an iPhone, Tablet or PC. No more tiny text when trying to show your site on a mobile phone.

I hope this clarifies things a bit. WordPress really is the best platform out there. Use it!

Your WordPress Resources Guide

Wordpress Users

Who This Site Is For

WordPress is one of the largest CMS platforms driving websites today. It went from being a PHP based blog engine to supporting a huge network of options, themes, plugins, content types etc. Its extremely versatile and chances are at some point you’re going to be dealing with WordPress. With this site my aim is to provide the best tutorials and WordPress resources available.

What I’ve set out to do with this site is to create the best WordPress resource out there. I’ve spent many hours over the years working with WordPress and I’ve decided to start documenting what I’ve learned here to save you time and resources.

WordPress Resources for Everyone

WordPress is designed specifically to make work easy and allow site owners to do what they do best – create content. But its really surprising how many hours people end up spending in WP either fixing problems, making changes to themes, looking for plugin’s – everything outside of the actual work at hand. My goal is to demystify these types of tasks and make life easier when people have to do DIY maintenance on their site. I want to help people find Themes and Plugins that provide the functionality they need.

I really believe this is one of the strongest CMS platforms available today. If you need help making your site, you’ve come to the right place.

WordPress Tutorials – Why I Started Teaching

Wordpress Tutorials

Why did I start creating wordpress tutorials and how did I get there? I think now is probably a good time to introduce myself and talk about why I’m doing BlogInABlog.com

It Began Back In College

I started designing and developing for the web in the mid 1990’s when everything was new and shiny. Well it was new, but it wasn’t actually shiny to look at, but the internet changed my life in a major way. I was a music student at the time at the University of North Texas. I remember getting my first email account and was pretty amazed at the wealth of potential and reach the internet had. You could share something with some guy in Japan – 2 complete strangers with like interests. It was an exciting and fruitful time for the web. The technology pretty much sucked compared to what we have today, but we were amazed and it was Xanadu for all I cared.

Rockstars and the Internet

My cousin had a band and I remember going to Minnesota to see them. Josh tells me he’s got a website and I about flipped out. He’d learned some HTML and figured out how to do it. As far as I was concerned they were real rockstars doing the whole thing themselves. I came home determined to do this as well. I bought a copy of Claris Homepage for my then PowerMac (also rocking HyperCard for lots of data. The program was hideous and made lots of coding errors, but I’d go into the code view and learned how to fix things. This is how I learned HTML. Later came dHTML (lord remember that?), JavaScript, PHP and then various versions of CSS. And I was a complete Flash maniac. Never thought that would go away, but for the time it was amazing.

Then Blogging

A few years later the blogging craze came into the mainstream. I started looking into various content management systems – the first one I built a blog on was MovableType. I still think MT is a fine publishing platform and its got some performance aspects that still top even WordPress, but at some point they changed their open-source structure and pretty much everyone was switching to WordPress.

I made the leap as well – don’t remember which version, but WordPress made sense. It was well designed, user friendly, light-weight if you know how to set up a server. It made it easy to create a blog and make content. Unfortunately these were the days where I was formally studying graphic design. I had gone back to college a second time and I spent most of my time building my own themes and spending literally hours getting everything to work right.

This was a long process and in some ways kind of a waste of time, but I learned WordPress inside and out.

My Years As A Professor

Fast forward to 2003 and I found myself as an adjunct professor at Brookhaven College in Dallas. I really loved that place and loved teaching, but we were doing it wrong. We were all teaching the same way we learned and technology simply doesn’t evolve the same way for everyone. We were doing things like teaching HTML 4 in semester 1 then switching to XHTML the next semester. This was a waste of time for students. HTML is wonderful, but its hard to make a living at anything learning the boring intricacies of something so basic. I wanted to be teaching WordPress and PHP. In my opinion, HTML is a few weeks, not a whole semester – let alone 2.

But as I developed my curriculum material, I started working hard on video tutorials for my students. Even with classes I physically taught, video tutorials are key to learning material as they can be reviewed on the student’s own schedule for repetition outside of class. I got known as the tutorial guy and these videos became very successful with my classes.

In 2012 my job had changed to teaching online students only. I hated this for 2 reasons. 1) I wasn’t teaching the material they really needed and 2) I never met them face to face. It was all leaving assignments in this god-awful backed courtesy of the folks at Blackboard. It was a joke. Blackboard was the worst.

So in 2012 I quit. Leap of faith – walked away. I wanted to do education by my rules and I wanted to do it better. The funny thing is at first I was scared of the $700 a month no longer coming in. But if I’m going to teach students how to make money online, I should be doing it myself right? I landed on my feet. I’m fine.

WordPress Tutorials

This is how BlogInABlog started. Its about WordPress and how to make it work for you. Its about knowing how it works so you can spend time creating beautiful content for the internet and not wasting time trying to figure it out on your own. Its about me teaching the material that’s important and the way it needs to be learned. And its about you learning it all for free and not paying money for some class that’s not giving you the tools you need.

WordPress is an amazingly simple platform on the surface, but under the hood it can get pretty wild. I’m here to clear that up for you and save you time while we have fun learning.