Top 30 Expenses You Can Expect When Launching a WordPress Business

Top 30 Expenses You Can Expect When Launching a WordPress Business

As WordPress gains more and more of the global CMS market share, there are a lot of opportunities to help businesses establish a strong digital presence with it. Needless to say, launching a WordPress business in this environment is a smart move. That said, no matter how slow of a start you have with your […]

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Questions to Ask a WordPress Developer You Want to Hire

Questions to Ask a WordPress Developer You Want to Hire

It’s been 15 years since WordPress first launched. Back then, there were limited demands and limited choices when it came to WordPress development services.

Since then, the CMS has grown to power over 30 percent of the web and there are a lot more developers to choose from. Because WordPress is so customizable, it can become anything you want, but you might need the help of a professional to fully utilize all the features it can offer.

Not only the theme of your unique WordPress website can be customized using PHP, MySQL, CSS and more, but also the plugins can be custom-made to add any functionality.

Because the market is so big, it can be hard to know how to choose a developer to assist you. Here are some tips for finding someone you really trust.

Go to the developer

Yes, chase them! Not literally though. You don’t need to be looking for the developers physically. In this day and age of digital fondness, one can easily get hold of and search for the developers online.

Use Slack, Twitter, or email to reach out to someone you want to work with. Chances are if they can’t help you, they can point you in the direction of someone who can. Try going to a WordCamp and meeting people in person. This is a great way to make connections and relationships with people that you can work with in the future.

Online forums and discussion platforms

Like we said before, productive discussions, as well as chit-chat about the latest WordPress developments here, will let you sift through a talented pool and community of the developers who are actively engaged in providing or freelancing WordPress development services. Did you know that Stack Overflow has around 111k questions asked by the progressive community of WordPress developers?

This is a great idea to get a list of names of developers you would be interested in working with. Then reach out through Slack.

What to say when you reach out

Finding a developer is the easy part, but actually reaching out can be daunting. One of the greatest things about WordPress is the open community. No matter where you look, you’ll find someone willing to help you, even if they themselves can’t do the job. Here are a few ways to start a conversation.

  • Look around for a way where you can contact them. As we said above, you can try Slack, Twitter, a contact form, or email. Begin a friendly conversation and ask what they are working on currently. This will give you insight into the kind of projects they can tackle. From there explain what you’re looking for and ask if they have time to help.
  • The amount you’ll have to pay a developer will vary depending on experience level and the difficulty of your project. Hammer out how much you’re willing to pay before hiring anyone. That way, you’ll make sure you can afford the person you like and they will get a fair amount.
  • If the person you are interested in can’t do the job, ask for recommendations. WordPress developers have their ear the ground in the community and know of people free and looking for work. See if they wouldn’t mind facilitating an introduction, and continue that process until you find the right fit.
  • Have a clear idea of what you want for your project before reaching out to anyone. It will be easier for both of you if the developer understands exactly how much work your website will entail.

These are a few simple ways to start looking for a freelance developer. At the end of the day, remember that the WordPress community is a large place, and people are willing to help you on your journey. Don’t be afraid to reach out or attend a WordCamp.

My name is Sophia Phillips and I am a WordPress developer at WordPrax Ltd. WordPress web development company. My work exists at the intersection of web development and technology blogging. In case, you have made up your mind to enhance WP website then it is better to hire WordPress developer who can serve you the desired services.

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Simple:Press Forum Plugin Is Up for Adoption

Simple:Press Forum Plugin Is Up for Adoption

Simple:Press, a forum plugin for WordPress that has been around for more than a dozen years, is available for adoption. Developers Andy Staines and Steve Klasen announced their plans to shutdown operations last August on their customer support forum and have had little luck finding a suitable replacement.

Simple:Press Forum in Action

Staines and Klasen will retire on August 1st. Everything related to the site, including the domain, plugin code, customer information, income, etc. will transfer to the new owner with no strings attached.

The forum plugin has been a labor of love for a long time. We don’t really want to see the plugin die because we have decided to retire. It has provided us a good secondary income for many years and has good potential for anyone who wished to make a go at it.

Steve Klasen

Simple:Press is not available on the WordPress.org plugin directory and generates revenue through memberships, themes, and plugins. Those interested in taking over the plugin or to find out more information can contact Klasen and Staines through the Simple:Press Forum contact form.

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24 Ways to Diversify Your Income as a WordPress Professional

24 Ways to Diversify Your Income as a WordPress Professional

It’s a question we all need to ask ourselves at some point: “How do I diversify my income?” It’s not like you can’t make a great living from designing WordPress websites. It’s just that that kind of work takes a lot of work. Wouldn’t it be nice to not have your revenue stream strictly dependent […]

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What Makes a Good WordPress Contact Page? Breaking It Down

What Makes a Good WordPress Contact Page? Breaking It Down

The contact page is a critical part of every WordPress site. Sure, you could place social media links in a top sticky bar, include a live chat down below, and embed a contact form on relevant pages. But visitors know that, if there is a means by which you can reach the company in person […]

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50 Goals You Need to Have for Your WordPress Business Right Now

50 Goals You Need to Have for Your WordPress Business Right Now

I’ve talked before about how to start a kickass WordPress business. You follow those eight steps, get all your matters in order, and then launch. Seems relatively simple, right? And if you’re here, then you’ve likely already gone through the process, or are in the middle of doing so. But what do you do after […]

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The Facebook Algorithm Change 2018: What it Means for Your Marketing

The Facebook Algorithm Change 2018: What it Means for Your Marketing

We are in for yet another Facebook algorithm change. When Mark Zuckerberg announced that the platform would start prioritizing news feed content differently, it didn’t go down too well with marketers. Especially since he explicitly stated that “you’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media” in favor of “meaningful conversations.”

What might sound good to private users, is worrisome to owners of Facebook pages. Will they still be able to get their content in front of their audience? Is it time to abandon Facebook as a marketing platform?

This very issue is the topic of this article. I will cover how the Facebook algorithm change in 2018 will influence how content ranks in the news feed. In addition to that, the post will give you concrete advice on how you can continue to get your content in front of your audience.

Just a small caveat: Nobody knows exactly what effects the changes will have as they roll out over the next few months. So, what follows are some educated guesses. Let’s get going.

Under the Hood of the Facebook Algorithm

When the average Facebook user logs into the platform, they have hundreds of updates waiting to populate their news feed. While in the past updates would appear in chronological order, for a few years now the Facebook algorithm has been deciding what you see in your feed.

Of course, the goal is to keep you engaged and on the platform. To decide which types of updates would best achieve that, Facebook uses different data points. Besides just looking at what’s available and who you are as a person, that also means examining the content itself. Here, it looks at things like:

  • Average time spent on content
  • Time of the posting
  • Was the link shared by another person over messenger?
  • Number of replies, comments, and likes
  • Overall post engagement
  • Publisher/brand post shared by a friend
  • Type of posting
  • How informative the post is

In the Future, It’s all About Activity

The new algorithm will put more emphasis on data points that show active interaction. That means comments, shares and reactions. On the other hand, passive interactions like clicking, watching a video or viewing/hovering over an image do not contribute to better rating.

Among the active interaction signals, we have the following hierarchy:

  1. Comments — Will be the new top currency on Facebook in 2018. Posts that generate a lot of (meaningful) comments and replies will move up in the news feed.
  2. Shares — The second most important ranking signal. Interactions with posts shared publicly (by friends on a timeline) or privately (via the messenger) will cause those posts to perform better.
  3. Reactions — The third important signal for active engagement.

In addition to the above, Facebook believes that personal posts are more valuable than those from brand pages.

What Does That Mean?

In short, the Facebook of the future wants to encourage people to talk to each other. The goal is to move from mere content consumption to real and meaningful engagement.

To achieve this, the platform will treat content that encourages this type of interaction favorably in the news feed. This is especially true for interactions between two people as opposed to between a person and a page.

For brands and pages that means, if they can foster these types of interactions, their content will perform better in the news feed. On the other hand, pages who put out content that usually doesn’t get reactions from followers will likely perform worse.

How can you avoid being among the latter? Let’s talk about that now.

Facebook Marketing After the 2018 Algorithm Update

As the new algorithm hits, brands and marketers need to shift from popularity and attention-driven content to content that creates substantial engagement. Here are some pointers on how to do that, plus additional tips on how to deal with the 2o18 Facebook algorithm upgrade.

1. Publish High-Quality Content

Quality and relevance should always be on the forefront of your Facebook strategy (or any content strategy). That’s just the price of admission. If what you share is shoddy or has nothing to do with the people you are trying to reach, it will have little to no effect.

Yet, the algorithm change will make focusing on quality even more important. Zuckerberg himself states that it will likely cause people to spend less time on the platform. Even if they are more engaged during that time, you better make sure that what you are publishing has the ability to stand out.

In addition to that, use all available tools to track the performance of your content. Have an eye on what works well and what doesn’t. It’s easier to make decisions about your content strategy that way.

2. Focus on Your Audience’s Needs

However, not just the quality will be important, the goal also matters. In order to adjust to the new Facebook algorithm, you will need to focus even more on the needs of your followers.

In order to create meaningful interactions, you need to share things that are meaningful to others. Only if they engage emotionally and personally will they feel the need to comment, share or interact with your content.

facebook reactions symbols

Of course, to be able to pull this off you need to have a deep understanding of your audience. Their challenges, struggles, fears, motivations – anything that gets them involved. Market research is a good starting point, however, it will also take a lot of testing.

3. Post Interaction-worthy Content

Since Facebook’s future is all about interaction, a good idea is to concentrate on types of content that have engagement built in. Those include:

  • Questions — Facebook is a tool for many to get recommendations from and ask questions to their peers. Why not do the same with your followers? It can spark interesting discussions and will also help you understand them better.
  • Timely, relevant topics — Post content on stuff that is going on right now. If it’s on a lot of other people’s minds, they are more likely to share their perspective and take part in the conversation.
  • Videos and other visual content —Visual content, in general, is more engaging than mere text. Video especially takes the crown in terms of engagement. So if you can source or produce videos, go for it!
  • Personal stories — You are not just a brand but also a person (or group of people). If Facebook aims to be about personal connection, why not get a little personal? Interact with followers more like you would with your friends and you are sure to make a more meaningful impact.

Aside from that, when an interaction unfolds, make sure to take part in it! Reply to comments, talk to your followers. It will keep the conversation going and also push your posts up in the news feeds.

4. Avoid “Engagement Bait”

We have all seen the types of posts like “tag a friend that looks like this in the morning” or “comment YES if you like burritos!”

facebook algorithm change 2018 engagement bait

They are a cheap ploy to get interactions and boost your posts’ visibility. However, they exist and people consider them viable options to game the new Facebook algorithm.

It’s basically the equivalent of keyword stuffing for web pages. It looks spammy, unprofessional and doesn’t add value to people’s lives. In short, you don’t want to engage in it. In addition to that, Facebook explicitly says that they will actively demote that kind of content.

5. Use Live Video

Live video is one of the most effective types of content on Facebook. It averages six times more interactions than regular video clips. Just watch BuzzFeed exploding a watermelon on live video, which was viewed more than 11 million times:

(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = ‘https://connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js#xfbml=1&version=v2.12’; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, ‘script’, ‘facebook-jssdk’));

Watch us explode this watermelon one rubber band at a time!

Posted by BuzzFeed on Friday, April 8, 2016

Live video is also one of the few concrete mentions for content that will continue to perform well under the new Facebook algorithm. For that reason, it’s a good idea to consider it.

6. Encourage Your Audience to Follow Your Page

Even if organic reach will be harder to achieve, people who follow your page will continue to see your content in their news feed. That’s especially true if they set their news feed preferences to See First.

follow facebook page set see first

The consequence: actively ask customers, readers, website visitors and other potential audience members to follow your page. While you are at it, also remind them of the possibility to prioritize your content in their news feed with the aforementioned option.

7. Harness the Power of Facebook Groups

Facebook Groups are used by more than a billion people worldwide. For many, they are also one of the main reasons to be on Facebook.

As a consequence, groups represent the perfect way for building an audience and a community around your topic. People join them to have meaningful conversations, discuss issues and share their ideas and opinions.

Therefore, they are also a great place to share your content and talk with others about it. Whether you join an existing group or create your own, they are a good place to get started.

8. Embrace Paid Reach

Since organic reach for Facebook pages has been declining for a number of years, many have turned to paid ads to make up for it. With Facebook further de-prioritizing content from pages and brands, it might be time to get educated on how to use Facebook ads effectively.

Whether you employ them to supplement your organic efforts or ramp up existing paid campaigns, under the new Facebook algorithm it’s probably a good idea to brush up on your skills.

9. Branch Out to Other Platforms

Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that while Facebook might be the biggest fish in the pond, it’s not the only one. There are other platforms that can bring in qualified traffic.

So, if you find your Facebook reach declining in the next couple months, doubling down is not your only choice. Instead, you can also divert your effort towards YouTube, Twitters, Instagram, Pinterest, and other social media networks.

Plus, don’t forget your own website. While we rely on social networks to bring in additional traffic, it’s not the only way to do it. For example, you might also invest in SEO, mobile friendliness, and site performance to increase your organic traffic.

Additionally, find other ways to stay in touch with your visitors. Build an email list and consider technology like push notifications to keep them in the loop. In short, make sure your business will be fine without the use of Facebook.

The Facebook Algorithm Change 2018 in a Nutshell

The changes coming to Facebook’s algorithm have potentially serious consequences for marketers and owners of Facebook pages. The shift towards more personal interaction threatens to further decrease their reach on the social network.

However, by embracing the new realities, you can fortify your marketing efforts. Let’s quickly recap how to address the algorithm changes:

  1. Continue to focus on high-quality content
  2. Make your audience needs your priority
  3. Post content worth talking about
  4. Stay away from spammy engagement bait tactics
  5. Embrace live video
  6. Actively encourage your audience to follow your page
  7. Look into Facebook groups
  8. Consider paid reach
  9. Put more efforts into other marketing channels

Aside from that, it’s important to stay informed. As mentioned, changes will further unfold in the time to come and might call for additional course corrections. When that happens, you don’t want to be outside the loop.

How do you feel about the Facebook algorithm changes? How do they affect your Facebook strategy? Let us know in the comments section below!

Nick Schäferhoff is an entrepreneur, online marketer, and professional blogger from Germany. He found WordPress when he needed a website for his first business and instantly fell in love. When not building websites, creating content or helping his clients improve their online business, he can most often be found at the gym, the dojo or traveling the world with his wife. If you want to get in touch with him, you can do so via Twitter or through his website.

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7 Reasons Your Small Business Needs a Blog

7 Reasons Your Small Business Needs a Blog

It seems like everyone has a blog these days. If you don’t, you’re probably wondering what all of the fuss is about. Businesses of all sizes start blogs because they offer a wealth of practical advantages that ultimately boost those businesses. If you’re looking for reasons to jump on the blog train, there’s no shortage of them.

Customers are looking for impactful digital experiences and a blog is a perfect way to reach people you might not have otherwise.

To Improve Your Web Presence

Blogging is excellent for search engine optimization. By providing useful content relevant to popular keywords or common questions, you’re putting yourself on the map. Regularly updating and swapping guest posts with similar blogs can help you improve your ranks within Google’s engine and help you network professionally.

It will also position you as the expert in your field. If someone searches for the product you’re selling and your blog comes up, it will show that you know what you’re talking about.

To Turn Followers Into Customers

By incorporating your products or services into your blog, particularly with images and videos, you’re making your offerings a little more enticing. This can turn followers into buyers. They’ll develop a greater understanding of what you do and the value you provide will become clearer.

Photos and videos may be the closest thing to an in-person demonstration some of your customers will get if your business is primarily eCommerce.

To Establish Yourself As An Authority

If you create a lot of informative blog posts, people will realize that they can come to you for all of their needs in the niche. Whenever they have a question or they want to know what innovations and tech advances are coming to your industry, they’re bound to turn to you first.

Your customers will view you as wise, and people are likely to share your posts with others who have similar interests.

To Reward Your Employees

There are plenty of ways to reward your employees that don’t cost a ton of money. Try handing them the keys to your blog. If you have an employee who is an expert on a particular subject, let them write about it.

Use your blog to showcase their excellent work. Your blog can serve as the ultimate source of public recognition – it reaches the whole world, rather than just the local community. Imagine how empowered your employees will feel when you the world how proud you are.

To Provide Useful Information to Your Customers

People love lessons and tutorials. If these things can help your customers make the most of your products or services, your blog posts can add a tremendous value to every purchase.

These kinds of posts may answer questions customers (or potential customers) didn’t even know that they had. They can also serve as a potential upsell opportunity if you have supplementary products or services to push.

To Create Stronger Branding

Your blog posts will become the voice of your brand. The language you use and the things you write about will ultimately personify you. Your readers will feel like they know your small business for more than just what it provides.

You’ll be a friend with your own specific energy and presence. This makes you more memorable to people who have just started shopping with you or people who may be interested in shopping with you in the near future.

To Strengthen Your Social Media Strategy

Building up a robust blog will allow you to fill gaps in your social media content sharing schedule. Even if you re-share an older post that’s still relevant (you can even hashtag it as a throwback), you’re keeping your small business towards the top of your followers’ social media feeds.

It’s important to remember that quality matters more than quantity with your blog. What you provide needs to be useful and relevant enough for people to enjoy that content. If you start a cluttered blog that doesn’t provide much practical information, people aren’t going to want to return. Only write posts that you would enjoy reading.

Rachel is a mother of two beautiful boys. She loves to hike and write about traveling, education, and business. She is a Senior Content Manager at Bizset.com – an online resource of relevant business information.

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