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Tweet Old Post–WordPress Plugin

I’m doing a WordPress Meetup this week in Meridian, ID and came across some really cool social media plugins. One of those is a plugin that automatically tweets out an old WordPress blog post. Tweet Old Post connects to your Twitter account and then randomly sends out tweets linking to your old post. It does this on a schedule you set-up once you install and active the plugin. You can choose to add just the title or title and body. Plus you can add #hashtags and control how new or old the post is that you want tweeted.

If you want to exclude certain post you can do that under the “Exclude Posts” settings. I did this for a few events I had posted that have already past. There is no point in posting those to Twitter since the event dates have already past.

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Search the WordPress Plugin Directory for “Tweet Old Post” or go to the plugins page and download the latest version.

Tweet Old Post

What’s your favorite social media plugin? Feel free to list it down below in the comments. Looks like the creator of this plugin has plans to post to Facebook and Google+. So keep an eye out for that and make sure you are always checking for plugin updates.

Dennis Smith is the author of “Promote Your Business or Cause Using Social Media – A Beginner’s Handbook”.

How-To Stop Those Bouncing Website Visitors

How do you track visits to your website or blog? If you are are using Google Analytics you might be familiar with the term Bounce Rate. But what is Bounce Rate?

The Bounce Rate is the percentage of visitors that hit a single-page and then bounce from your site. If you have 1000 visitors on your site and 200 visit other pages on your site besides the home page, your Bounce Rate would be 80 percent. That’s because 800 of those visitors hit just your home page and then bounced.

The lower the bounce rate the better you are doing at keeping visitors on your website. Which should help improve other site stats and keep readers coming back.

So how does one lower a sites bounce rate? That’s something I’ve been trying to master myself with some success. Below are some tips and tricks that I’ve learned over the years.

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Eye-Catching Headlines

Write catchy headlines that will draw in your readers and get them to click and then read your post. You want to get them off your home page and reading the meat of your site.

Don’t Give Away The Farm

The home page shouldn’t have full articles or you risk the reader bouncing. Just give enough information to entice them to clicking on a post so they go further into your site. There are tons of WordPress themes set-up to display part of the article and then display a link to read more.

Find Reliable Hosting

Don’t give your visitors an excuse to leave by having a slow site. Look for reliable hosting and keep your site running at top speeds.

Related Post

Plug-ins are a great tool to help keep your site bounce rate down. Related Posts will find and display a list of similar post. Think of it as walking your readers through your website.

Great SEO

Bring the right kind of people to your website with optimized pages. If you page is optimized for your subject matter the less chances a new visitor will bounce. Check out the All-In-One SEO Pack plugin and optimize your site. Remember to fine tune as you go since search engine rankings are always changing.

Please feel free to comment below or leave any suggestions you have.

WordPress Themes – The Ultimate List

The beauty of WordPress is the availability of hundreds if not thousands of themes to get that look and feel regardless of the industry you are in. You can find beautiful and functional themes that are both free (use caution when looking for free themes+) and for a nominal cost. Here are some links to many great WordPress themes in no certain order. If you find others please let us know by leaving a comment or let us know which WordPress themes you think are the best.

Vintage WordPress Theme

Theme List:

50 Beautiful Ecommerce WordPress Themes

Free WordPress Portfolio Themes: 30 Free WordPress Gallery Themes

30 Best WordPress E-Commerce Themes

100 Excellent WordPress Themes

Free WordPress Themes

Theme Sites:

Arcane Palette Museum Themes

Premium WordPress

More Free WordPress Themes

New WordPress Themes

Storefront Themes

Theme Jam

Press75

StudioPress

Templatic

DIY Themes

Legend Themes

Clover Themes

ColorLabs

Site5 WordPress Themes

Web2Feel

iThemes

TemplateSOLD

ThemeFuse

The Theme Foundry

Rocket Theme

WordPress Free Theme Directory

WP Themes

Elegant Themes

ThemeForest

Graph Paper Press

Headway Themes

Photocrati

Theme Trust

Themes Zen

Theme Wars

Mojo Themes

Woo Themes

ThemeShift

Organized Themes

Organic Themes

RichWP

SoloStream

Themes by bavotasan.com

PageLines

WPZoom

WPyuzu WordPress Themes

Viva Themes

Free Premium WordPress Theme

 

*Please note: I have linked to affiliate marketing programs on some sites listed above to help pay for this site. Please be cautious of free WordPress themes to make sure they come from a reliable source.

+ Please note: If searching for free themes make sure they are coming from a reliable source to protect yourself from any possible malicious activities.

Find Your Perfect WordPress Dream Theme

imageThe feature I like the most about WordPress is its ability to let you change the look and feel of your site.  It can be done on the fly without any web development background.  You can accomplish this by finding the perfect themes and plugins to suit your needs.  WordPress has thousands of self-installs which means there are hundreds of options for free themes and a huge array of themes for sell.

I always suggest to my clients that they find a theme that matches the subject matter of their WordPress blog.  Here’s an example of a friends blog Tandem Revolution, which covers her and her husbands biking adventures.  I like the use of the image across the top showing the spokes of a bike.  It is a simple yet effective use of a theme that matches the topic of her blog. 

Free themes tend to have some limitations and affiliate links.  Whereas paid for themes give you more flexibility with customization.  I suggest starting out with something free if you are on a limited budget.  But if it is in your budget I would take your time and find something that fits your needs.  If your traffic grows you can change your theme at anytime.  The theme I use for this site was free and fits in well with the look and feel of my book.

Here are five sites to locate your perfect WordPress dream theme.

#1| ThemeForest

Themes for any budget and any industry

ThemeForest has a wide variety of WordPress themes for the average blogger and those looking to sell product using WordPress.  Themes are affordably priced for those on a budget or those looking for something unique.  I have included a screenshot of the e-commerce theme WpShop below to show the power of WordPress.  It is not just for blogging and can be used to sell a myriad of product, list homes and rentals, promote a restaurant or business.

Theme Forest on Facebook

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#2 | Elegant Themes

Offers lots of themes at a great price

Elegant Themes has lots of great themes to pick from and at only $39 a year gives you access to 61 designs.  Plus ET says they release 2-3 new themes each month so you are sure to find something.  You also get 30-days to decide if it is worth it with their money-back guarantee.  I like how they target themes towards specific industries such as restaurants, retail and a host of other themes to match your needs.  Since I love food I included the MyCuisine theme as the screenshot below.

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#3 | Woo Themes

Lots of free themes and a wide variety for any industry

Woo Themes is another big player when it comes to WordPress themes.  Woo offers any array of themes that are build for SEO and functionality.  I have heard through the grapevine that Woo offers great support from tutorials, video tutorials and user support forum.  The thing that I like most about the Woo Themes is you can sort themes on their website to find the perfect match.  How about at least a dozen free themes to boot?  There is bound to be something for everyone with Woo Themes.

Woo Themes on Facebook

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#4 | StudioPress

WordPress themes built on the Genesis Framework

These themes are built with search engine optimization in mind.  Wondering what the Genesis Framework is?  Here’s more information on that and why you should go with StudioPress.  I have to admit that these are some of the best WordPress themes I have seen.  The layouts are nice, clean, modern and eye-catching designs that stand out.  Plus you can get all themes for one great price and you get future themes at no extra charge.

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#5 | Legend Themes

New player in the theme market offering clean designs

Legend Themes is located right here in Boise and has just a few themes to pick from along with the free Emphasis Theme.  The Snapshot theme is perfect for those who enjoy the art of photography.  All themes have a nice clean look to them and offer various customization.  The price on this theme and others are $70 which includes technical support.

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More Resources:

80+ Clean and Simple WordPress Themes

380 Premium WordPress Themes

Free “Leather” Theme from Legend Themes

MagPress Free WordPress Themes

Article by Dennis J. SmithPromote Your Business Or Cause Using Social Media – A Beginners Handbook

Windows Live Writer makes blogging a breeze

Are you thinking about starting your own blog but scared off by technology?  It might not be as hard as you think when it comes to starting a blog.  If you know Microsoft Office you’re already halfway there.  If you don’t its still easy when you have tools that simplify the process.  Windows Live Writer from Microsoft is one of those must have tools for bloggers.

Blog almost anywhereWindows Live Writer lets you manage your blog regardless of where its hosted or the format you are using.  I use it to update all my WordPress blogs and an older blog I have on Blogger.  But it can be used with LiveJournal, TypePad, Windows Live Spaces, SharePoint and others.  Plug-ins are available that give Live Writer even more functionality.  Visit the Live Gallery to find out what’s available and to install plug-ins you find beneficial.

The toolbar across the top of Windows Live Writer lets you control aspects of the font, text alignment, adding images, tables and inserting other items into your post.  You can also cut, paste and undo changes if you aren’t satisfied.  The side bar to the right duplicates editing tools such as current drafts, recently posted articles and inserts into your article.  It’s really easy to get around the application to create the perfect blog post.

Windows Live Writer

The edit mode tab allows you to create your article much like you would create a Word document(add images, hyperlinks, tables and more).  Preview mode loads the theme of your blog and gives you a sneak preview of what your readers will see.  It might not display a perfect rendition since it depends on the theme you use.  The bottom area of the application lets you assign categories, tags, the author, future publish date and more.

Live Writer Preview

Those who have a little more knowledge of HTML can click on the Source tab and use HTML code to customize a post before going live.  Here’s a great resource for those interested in learning more about HTML.

If you have a blog have you used Windows Live Writer?  Another blogging tool? 

Give it and try and see what you think and share some of the articles you’ve written with Windows Live Writer.  Please feel free to leave your comments below.

Download Windows Live Writer

Windows Live Writer Plugin Gallery

By Dennis J. Smith

Learn WordPress Plugins

 

The information below is part of an ongoing training course for customers of GreenHost USA website and WordPress blog hosting.  We will be releasing more training information on WordPress over the coming months.  What’s your favorite WP Plugin?  Please feel free to comment below:

What’s a WordPress plugin?
Plugins are applications that allow you to extend the power and functionality of WordPress. The Plugin Directory offers access to hundreds of useful plugins for your WordPress blog.

WordPress Plugins
How do I install a plugin?
There are a few ways you can accomplish installing a plugin to your WP blog. Visit the Plugin Directory to find the Plugin that you’d like to install on your WordPress blog. You’ll find information on what the plugin will do for your blog. Download the .zip file to your PC and log in to your WordPress Dashboard. Select the Plugin Menu on the left-hand side of the dashboard and click “Add New”. Select “Upload” at the top of the menu and browse for your downloaded .zip file and then click the “Install Now” button.

The other way to install plugins is to search for a plugin by entering the name of the plugin you are searching for. Click the “Search Plugins” button and wait for the results to display. If the plugin you are searching for is in the results list you just click “Install Now” below the plugin name. Activate the plugin to have access to the plugins settings.

Don’t let the Ratings of a Plugin stop you from giving it a try since you can always uninstall any plugin you don’t like.

Install WordPress Plugin

What plugins should I use?
IgniteHost recommends that you install the following plugins to your WordPress blog:

All in One SEO Pack – Improves your blogs Search Engine Optimization.

Disqus Comment System – Adds more functionality and options than the standard WP commenting system.

Odiogo Listen Button – Give your blog a voice. Translates your blog post from text and turns it into audio.

Sexy Bookmarks – Allows your readers to share your post to various social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and more.

Wibiya Toolbar – Displays across the bottom of your blog in toolbar form to give readers options to share, like your blog posting, view recent or recommended post, subscribe to your RSS Feed and more.

WP Touch – Transforms your WordPress blog into an iPhone like theme for those accessing your site from a mobile device.

WP FB Like – Places the Facebook “Like” or “Recommend” button at the top and/or bottom of your postings. Links will show in the wall feeds of the Facebook users who click these buttons.

WP-DBManager – Backup your WordPress database and download it to your PC or have it e-mailed to you.

How do I update plugins?
When you log into WordPress Dashboard you will be notified of any new updates to any plugins you have installed and those that are installed but deactivated. You can update one at a time or you can do a bulk updated by selecting all plugins with an update.

How do I delete plugins?
Plugins can be deleted in the same manner as described above by checking those plugins you would like to delete.

More resources:
http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/ – WordPress Plugins
http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/browse/popular/
- Most Popular Plugins
http://codex.wordpress.org/Managing_Plugins – Managing Plugins
http://wpcandy.com/ – Blog on everything WordPress

WordPress Hosting from IgniteHost:
http://ignitehost.net/plans/index.asp?Plan=Ignite%20Blogger

10 must have WordPress Plugins

Being the most popular blogging platform in the world has its advantages.  There are millions of individuals and businesses that are using a WordPress blog.  Those blogs are the stepping stones to promoting a business or a cause. 

Plugins make those blogs even more powerful and there are over 10,000 to choose from.  The best thing is they are all free and install in just minutes!

We’ll cover some of the best plugins out there that make your blog more attractive to search engines, one that let you send a newsletter and others that will keep your readers on your site longer and some get you “Liked” on Facebook.

All in One SEO Pack
If you don’t have this plugin installed you should download it today.  It is the most downloaded plugin for WordPress blogs.  This plugin is used to assist in the search engine optimization of your WordPress blog.  Installation only takes a moment and set-up is fairly simple.  Find more information here on how to use it once you have the plugin installed.

All in One SEO Pack

Akismet
This plugin prevents spam from being posted to the comments section of your post.  The plugin checks your comments against the Akismet server to see if they look like spam.  The “Comments”" admin screen lets you review spam comments before they display below your post.

Contact Form 7
Those looking for a way to gather customer information need to look no further.  The plugin Contact Form 7 uses CAPTCHA in order to prevent non-humans from submitting a form.  This plugin even uses Akismet to filter out any spam.  It can help you manage multiple contact forms and is customizable for those with a little more experience with code.

Contextual Related Posts
Keep your readers around longer with a plugin that displays related stories.  This plugin will display a list of related post at the end of the post the reader is viewing.  The plugin looks at the tags or the current article to match it with similar post the reader might like.  Therefore keeping them around longer on your site instead of reading one article and moving on.

Contextual Related Posts

fbLikeButton
Let your readers “Recommend” or “Like” your blog post and share them with one-click to their Facebook friends.  The plugin is customizable in look and feel depending on your blogs theme.  The button can be displayed before or after your post.  This is a great way to draw traffic to your blog from Facebook.

FBLike Plugin Screenshot

Google Analytics for WordPress
This plugin bills itself as the most complete Google Analytics plugin for WordPress.  Track where your readers are coming from, how long they are staying around on your blog and more.  The newest version promises to be faster when loading the tracking code.

Newsletter
Keep your readers coming back to your blog with a newsletter you compose.  It can be sent out on whatever frequency you like.  Your readers can opt-in to your newsletter with just a name and email address.  This is a very powerful plugin and you can read more information here.

WP-DB-Backup
Must have plugin to give you piece of mind that your hard work is protected.  This plugin is able to backup your core WordPress database on a schedule or when ever you need.  You can save it to the server, your PC or have it sent via email to protect your blog post.  It also allows you to backup other tables that are related to your WordPress blog.

WP Google-buzz
Facebook and Twitter still reign when it comes to social media sites.  Google might be the powerful search giant but its entry into social media with Google Buzz kind of fizzled.  However there is rumor that Google has something new coming down the pipeline.

WPtouch iPhone Theme
Give your blog that iPhone look and feel for your readers on the go.  WPtouch gives your WordPress blog an iPod/iPhone app look.  The admin controls for the plug-in give you lots of customization.  Viewer can toggle to the normal view for your blog with a flip of a switch.

More information…

More Resources:

WordPress Plugin Directory

Affordable WordPress Hosting from IgniteHost – Starting at less than $5 a month!

Original article posted on Dennis J. Smith – Social Media Author

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