50 more tips for WordPress, blogging, promotion and SEO success

Build a better blog or website with these tips for WordPress, social media promotion, SEO and more

Here are 50 great tips covering a range of topics to help you make your website or blog site a success, from SEO to WordPress hacks to social shares. Grow your site and traffic!

I challenged myself to write 365 tips for blogging, online business, website building and promotion, and SEO. Follow my progress, and get tips 101 to 365 by joining my Facebook group 365 Blogging Support.

The tips are fairly random, but there are small groups of tips, like three or four on the same topic, then it switches to something else. You never know what is coming up next but there is something for everyone and lots to learn about blogging, site building, promotion and making a success of your online presence.

Where are tips 1-50?

Tips 1-50 tips are here: 50 tips for blogging, website business, promotion and SEO

51 Create accounts to test roles

In recent tips (see the previous article) I discussed the roles that can be assigned to users with accounts on your website. Creating test accounts can help you to understand how these work.

Go to Users and click Add New to create a new account. Fill in the form – you need to provide an email address, but most email providers let you create extra ones (if you use Gmail, put a . in your name like b.obsmith, bo.bsmith bob.smith@gmail.com and so on and emails to all these land in your inbox).

Open an incognito/private web browser window, go to your site and log in with the account. Have a look around and see what you can access and what you can/cannot do.

Using your normal admin account, change it to Subscriber, Contributor, Author, Editor and see the difference.

52 When should you update your website?

WordPress has major updates yearly and minor ones every few months. Plugins are updated even more frequently and weekly one or more need updating. Go to Dashboard > Updates to see if there are any updates available.

Should you update your site or plugins immediately? It may be useful to wait a week and let others try it first. Don’t be the first. Check Facebook groups to see if anyone is having problems with WordPress.

Check the Reviews and Support tabs at the WordPress.org plugin page for compatibility and people having problems. If no problems are reported, go ahead and upgrade, if there are many problems, wait till they are fixed.

53 The best time to update WordPress and plugins

When plugin, theme and WordPress updates are available, it is best to install them sooner rather than later. There may be security flaws in them that would allow a hacker to gain access to your website. By all means wait a short time to make sure there are no problems with the updates, but then install them.

The best time to install updates is when your website is at its quietest. Do not do it at peak times of the day when there are many visitors. Why? Firstly, the site is taken offline during the update and the fewer people that see this, the better. Secondly, something might go wrong and again, the fewer people that are around to experience the problem, the better.

The WordPress dashboard shows visitor numbers by day if you have Jetpack installed, but Google Analytics can show the same information. From the peaks and troughs in the visitor numbers chart, you can see the quietest day.

WordPress update notification

First thing Sunday morning works best for many people.

54 Enable minor WordPress updates

WordPress contains bugs and security flaws. How do we know? Because of the constant stream of updates and patches. WordPress can be configured to automatically install these fixes and because they change little, apart from making your site more secure and less buggy, they can be set to install automatically.

Geek alert! There is a file called wp-config.php on the web server, although you will need an FTP program or Cpanel to access it, and within that file, is the following line of code:

define( ‘WP_AUTO_UPDATE_CORE’, minor );

If it does not exist, create it. It is actually the default setting for WordPress, but in the next tip I will look at the alternative settings.

55 Automatic core updates

WordPress updates are either minor or major. A minor update is a change from 4.5.0 to 4.5.1, whereas a major update would be from 4.5.x to 4.6.0. Minor updates do not usually affect your site and rarely break it. Major updates can break it because of incompatibilities with plugins.

For this reason, the default setting for updates is for minor ones to occur automatically without you having to do anything. Major ones just show a notification and it is up to you to upgrade.

It is possible to set major updates to occur automatically and it is slightly risky, but this can be offset by having backups which enable you to undo updates. Here’s how to make major updates automatic.

Geek alert! There is a file called wp-config.php on the web server  and you will need an FTP program or Cpanel to access it. Within that file, search for the following line of code:

define( ‘WP_AUTO_UPDATE_CORE’, true );

If the line does not exist, create it. Your site will update automatically the minute updates are available and you will be at the cutting edge of WordPress releases.

56 Don’t join Facebook like-for-like schemes

How do you promote your Facebook page? Browse the blogging groups on Facebook and you will find many like-for-like posts. They say something like “Like my Facebook page and I will like yours.” This results in fake likes from people that aren’t really interested. They only like your page so you will like them back. They often aren’t your target audience anyway.

Facebook is probably aware of like-for-like schemes and, rumour has it, reduces your reach. We cannot be sure what Facebook does, but it seems likely. Don’t try to cheat. Genuine likes are much more valuable and signal to Facebook that you have an interesting page that people want to see. It will then show it to more people.

People exchange likes on social sites like Facebook

Like for like is possibly damaging. Don’t do it!

57 Don’t click adverts

Browse the blogging and related groups on Facebook and you will see a common type of request along the lines of “Visit 8 pages on my site and click 3 adverts.” Do not engage in these. They build false traffic and false advertising clicks. Google has a small army of people trying to detect fake clicks on adverts and other advertisers will also try to detect fake clicks too. You may get your account banned, so it’s not worth it.

58 Try something different

Today’s tip is really simple. If it isn’t working, try something different. For example, some people say that Pinterest works brilliantly for them and nothing else compares, but if you tried Pinterest and it didn’t do much for other social networks, try a different one. It is the same with Facebook and for some people it is their number 1 source of visitors. For other people it doesn’t work very well at all.

If you tried affiliate marketing and didn’t get many sales, try doing it a different way. Change the page, change the wording, change the images and so on. If Facebook ads are not bringing in the numbers you want, try a different style of add with different words, image and design.

The important thing to realise is everyone is different and what works for one person may not work for someone else. You need to try many different things, see which ones work the best and focus on those.

59 Password protected posts

If you want to keep a post secret, it is possible to password protect it in WordPress. If someone visits the page they are asked to enter the password before it is shown to them.

Why would you password protect a post? It could be used to provide content to people that meet certain requirements. For example, people that sign up to your email list could be given a password that lets them access a freebies page with ebooks, resources and other downloads.

To lock a post with a password, look in the sidebar on the right in the post editor. In the Publish box it says Visibility: Public Edit. Click the ‘edit’ link and then select Password protected. You can then add a password.

Password protect a post in WordPress

See: Password protect posts on WordPress to limit access to content

60 Make posts private

In the last tip I showed how to password protect a post. There is another setting you should be aware of – Private. When you are creating a new post or editing an existing one, in the Publish box on the right is Visibility: Public. Click the Edit link to the right of that and there is an option to set the post as private. What does this do?

It makes the post invisible to everyone except users with their account set to administrator or editor

61 Email marketing essentials

If you want to build an email list and send out regular emails to people telling them about your latest blog posts, courses, special offers and so on, there are several things you must include in each email message. A postal address.

This is not a problem if you are a company with offices and a business address. It is more of a problem with bloggers working from home. You may only have your home address and you might not want to put it in your emails.

In many parts of the world, the US for example, it is a legal requirement to have a postal address in marketing emails and there are fines if you don’t. Big fines. For this reason, many mail services will not let you send emails unless a postal address is included.

If you don’t have a business address and don’t want to put your home address on your emails, get a PO box. There is a monthly charge for this, but it is the best solution.

62 Quality vs quantity shares

It seems obvious that the more places you share links and the more often you share links, the more people you reach, but that is a novice mistake.

I have a list of over 50 places I can share links to my website and posts. Every day I could share a link to them, but I don’t. Why? It is quality vs quantity issue.

If you share a link to post or site too many times, you get tagged as a spammer by Facebook, Google, and other services. They will then reduce your reach and limit your shares. They often don’t tell you they’ve tagged you as a spammer and you continue share links like crazy, but don’t make any progress. Eventually they tire of you and block you.

Ever been in Facebook jail? You are sharing wrong!

It is useful to try sharing links to your site in many different places, but not all at once. What you need to do is experiment and see which places get you the biggest response and then focus on them. Ignore the places where you get little response.

For example, I have a list containing over 20 Google+ communities where I can share links. How many do I actually share each day? At most three, but usually just two and sometimes just one.

Share one link in the right Google+ community and I get a great response with many +1s (likes) and shares. It works better than when I was sharing 20 links a day.

It is the same story on Facebook and one link in the right place, such as a group, can get a better response than 20 spammy shares to spammy groups.

Remember: Quality is better than quantity.

63 A word about cheap hosting plans

Why are there such large price differences between hosting plans between website hosting companies and even within companies? There are many reasons, but one is the amount of traffic they can cope with.

A cheap hosting plan for people on a tight budget may only be able to cope with 10,000 visitors a month. It might seem a lot when you are just starting out, but within a year or two you will exceed that number and then your site will run into performance problems. It may even stop working at peak periods.

Cheap web hosting plans

More expensive hosting plans can cope with more visitors. As your site becomes more successful and attracts more visitors, you may need to upgrade your hosting plan to one that can maintain performance, even when many people are accessing it. It will cost more, but it is the price of success!

64 Don’t put all your eggs in one basket

This is a well known saying and it means, don’t rely on one thing. This tip is inspired by a recent comment by Mark Zuckerberg who says Facebook news feeds will in future focus on family and friends, and businesses, brands and media will get a lot less exposure in news feeds.

There are people that get 90% of their web traffic from Facebook and this could severely impact them. Take away that traffic and what have they got?

There are other people that get 90% of their traffic from Pinterest and while there haven’t been any Pinterest announcements, a similar change to the way the service works could impact those people too.

It is risky relying so heavily on one single platform for all your blog/website traffic, particularly if you don’t own it. Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram and other sites should be an important part of your promotion strategy, but don’t rely exclusively on just one. Spread the risk by working on building your audience across multiple platforms.

Also, build your traffic from search engines with good SEO and build your email list so you can mail news, updates and offers directly to your audience.

65 Information overload

Do you suffer from information overload? There are thousands and probably tens of thousands of posts about blogging, building websites, making a success of your online business, income reports, getting affiliates, gaining subscribers and followers, and… Well, the list goes on and on.

The danger is you read, read and read, and never actually do much. You are spending too much time reading what everyone else is doing and not enough time on working on your own site.

You should never stop learning of course, but put a time limit on it. Here is one solution, work on your blog during the week, but spend any free time at the weekend reading those how-to articles and learning the business.

Another way would be to spend half an hour at the end of each day reading. Anything you come across during the day, bookmark it in your browser so you can read it later.

66 Focus on one or two successes

In the last tip I discussed information overload and how there is simply too many people and articles talking about building your blog, email list, affiliates, subscribers, Facebook page, Pinterest followers, and so on.

You need to cut down and focus in order to stop spending so much time reading what others are doing and actually do stuff yourself. Your blog won’t get built if you spend too much time reading what others are doing and not enough time on your own blog.

Find one, two or even three successful people in your niche and copy them. No I don’t mean rip off their posts, I mean copy their techniques and methods. For example, what is the first thing you see when you land on the home page of their site? Do something similar.

How do they attract email subscribers? A pop-up form on their site? A freebie giveaway? Can you do something similar?

Do they have a freebie section, affiliates, adverts, downloadable templates? What is it that makes the site a success?

Focus on a few sites and try to replicate that success, and ignore the thousands of other sites. They are just a distraction.

67 (Don’t) click my ads and I’ll click yours

Search Facebook for AdSense and you will come across groups that exchange clicks on adverts. Basically people say “Click my ads and I’ll click yours.” People visit each others websites and click AdSense adverts.

This may work for a time, but disaster will strike sooner or later.

Avoid Facebook groups where people exchange clicks

  1. Google may discover you are cheating and ban you, losing your income and whatever money is in your account.
  2. You may see an increase in ad revenue for a day or so after posting a request in a group like this, but then people will stop clicking and you will lose your income.
  3. You have to keep cheating with click-for-click because you have no regular site traffic.

I receive hundreds every month from AdSense and it is a regular income. It’s not from click-for-click schemes, it is from real traffic and this is by far the best method.

Trying to cheat the system is a short term solution to a problem – insufficient traffic. Get people to visit your website or blog and ad revenue will grow. See the RAW Guides courses for tips on increasing traffic.

68 Keyboard shortcuts

If you want to write blog posts faster, learn some keyboard shortcuts. For example, to enter a heading 2, type:

## This is a heading 2

Type a heading 3 with three hashes, heading 4 with four hashes and so on.

To make text bold, select it and press Ctrl+B (PC) or Cmd+B (Mac). Select text and press Ctrl+I or Cmd+I to make it italic.

69 Never forget who you’re writing for

It seems an obvious thing to say, but some people actually forget. I was reminded about this by a recent post in a Facebook group from someone who talked about how much time they spent getting the lights/ticks to go green in Yoast, the SEO popular plugin for WordPress.

You are writing for people, not plugins! A plugin is just some code that a programmer wrote and while it is a useful plugin, you are not writing to please Yoast, you are writing to please people.

Yoast WordPress plugin helps you optimise your site for search engines

Yoast is a helpful tool, but don’t get bogged down trying to make those traffic lights turn green. It offers advice, not hard rules and if you think it is justified, do it your way and ignore what Yoast says.

Knowing when to take its advice and when to ignore it is the key.

More about Yoast and SEO

70 Grow quickly, grow slowly, just keep at it

Traffic – getting people to visit your blog or website – is one of the most common problems that people have. It can be disheartening writing blog post after blog post and seeing so few people read them. What can you do?

There isn’t one single thing that will solve all your problems. It is more like 100 little things and combined they all help to grow your traffic.

Some websites grow traffic quickly, but some grow slowly. Sometimes you just have to keep at it and the successful people are the ones that stick with it and don’t give up.

Unfortunately, the web and Facebook is awash with articles with outrageous claims like “How I grew my traffic by 50k in one month” or “How I grew my Pinterest/Facebook followers by 25k in one week,” or “How I made $500 two days after launching my blog.”

It makes you feel a failure if you aren’t getting tens of thousands of visitors after your first month and you’re not making $10k a month from your site.

The truth is, most people don’t. Often the people that write these articles have been blogging for many years and this is their second, third or fourth attempt.

Sometimes people ‘fake it till they make it’ and they aren’t really doing what they claim. Some are the real deal though.

Building a successful website is a marathon and not a sprint. If you want to be a winner you have to keep at it.

71 Time to promote your blog

Few people will find your blog by accident and that is something you will learn fairly quickly. Just look at the visitor numbers on your blog and prepare to be disappointed. (Google Analytics is best, but the Jetpack plugin shows useful stats too.)

Getting people to read your blog is something you must work at. Daily!

You must get out there and tell the world what’s happening on your site. Shout from the rooftops that you have a new blog post! Get links in front of eyeballs!

25% of your time should be spent promoting your content.

If you have not shared at least 3 links to posts today, and every day, you are doing it wrong.

Promote, promote, promote!

Yesterday, for example, I wrote a post showing how to hide spoilers, answers, and other content. This morning I spent half an hour sharing links and telling everyone about it.

Don’t spam, share intelligently.

Notice how I slipped in a link to my latest post? Cleverly disguising link sharing as helpful tips is just one technique you can use.

72 Debug your Facebook shares

If you share a link to your website or a post on your website on Facebook, Twitter and other places, it should show a large image, the title and text intro. If you share a link and this does not happen, use the Facebook Debugger to find out what is wrong.

Sometimes a temporary internet or Facebook glitch causes your site or post to be misread and clicking the Scrape Again button fixes it. Sometimes you have to click Scrape Again three or four times before Facebook gets the info.

Use Facebook debugger to check social shares

When everything looks good in Facebook Debugger, sharing your link again will result in the image/title/text preview.

73 Do you need a Facebook page?

If you have a blog/website, should you have a Facebook page as well?

Yes! Some people’s Facebook pages are popular and they get thousands of visitors to their website directly from the page. It can be a good source of traffic for your site.

It is worth creating one if you get traffic, sales, and engagement from many people, but that won’t come for free or without effort.

It is something you have to work at and building a large following for your Facebook page is not easy. The page itself is not a problem, but getting people to like it and follow it takes some skill, effort and planning.

If you do not have a Facebook page, create one today!

74 Build traffic with guest posts

Backlinks – links to your site from other websites – are one of the best ways to improve your search visibility. Sites with many backlinks rank higher at search engines and are more likely to appear on page one of the results.

Backlinks build traffic from search.

How do you get backlinks? One way is to guest post. Find a website that has similar traffic to your own, find a contact email, and simply ask if they would like a great article for their website.

Some sites will ignore you and some will reply with ‘No’, but others will be keen to accept guest posts because it is a free article that can draw in visitors. The site owner can save time and effort writing posts themselves or paying someone to write them by publishing guest posts.

Somewhere in the guest post you can add a link back to your own website. When it is published on your site Google, Bing and other search engines will notice and give your site a little boost up the search result ranking.

Read: 12 points to consider when guest posting to boost traffic

75 Not all backlinks are equal

One of the best ways to increase your ranking at search engines like Google is to get backlinks from other websites. However, backlinks can also decrease your search ranking!

There are good backlinks and bad backlinks.

1 The ranking of the site with the backlink is important. A high ranking site passes authority to your site when it links to you.

2 Bad sites that link to you at best are ignored, but may even lower your ranking in search results.

3 Spammy links may be ignored, but may lower your ranking in search results.

Let’s look at these in reverse order. What are spammy links? Hundreds of links in forums, blog comments, social networks, and so on. Less is more! In other words, a few shared links in carefully selected places work far better than many links shared everywhere.

What’s a bad site? One that has malware, pirate software or music or videos, sites known for hacking and other security issues, sites with many spam posts, and so on.

So what’s a good backlink? A site regarded as an authority in your niche, appears high in search results, and has huge traffic is the best place for backlinks. A tiny bit of their authority is transferred to you.

It is not always possible to get a top ranking site to link to you. A new site may not yet be ranked very highly and might not have much traffic, but don’t dismiss it. If a site is well designed, has great content, and is in your niche, a backlink is still useful. It won’t be quite as beneficial as a top site, but it will still give your site a boost.

76 Never stop learning

No-one knows everything and there is always something new to learn. If you think you know a topic, seeing it from someone else’s perspective can give you new insights.

There are many articles published on the web daily discussing how to grow your site, get more visitors, build an income and so on. You should set aside time to find them and study them.

There are also many online courses that teach everything from website building to SEO, marketing and affiliates. There are short and simple email courses that are free, all the way up to huge online study courses that cost hundreds of dollars.

You can’t buy every course out there because you would end up spending more money than your website is making, but sometimes it is worth spending a little money to learn something that will benefit your site.

A question was asked in another Facebook group about whether people took courses and some of the top SEO and marketing experts revealed they take one course after another. Dozens in fact. Always seeking to learn something new and build a better and more successful website.

It would be great if you could try my courses but you will discover thousands more elsewhere once you start looking. If you want a free resource, get Google Primer app for your iPhone or Android phone, it is packed with mini courses and it is free.

Google Primer app on Android

Learn something new today!

77 Boost SEO and search ranking with photos

Google likes original content best and I bet this goes for photos as much as for text. My guess is a stock photo or a free photo used on a thousand other websites is of no interest to Google, but if you have an original photo that you have taken yourself or had taken for you, then that is interesting.

Using stock or free photos is quick and easy, and taking great photos yourself is hard, so it isn’t surprising that so many people choose the easy route (I’m guilty too!).

Even if you can manage it only occasionally, take an original photo. Tip: Take a dozen or more from different angles, with and without flash, and choose the best one.

78 Narrow your focus

Bloggers face many problems and a big one is constantly coming up with new ideas for blog posts. Over the next few tips I will look at this topic.

Sometimes people try to cover too much in one post. Either they spend weeks writing it as it grows ever longer because they keep coming up with ideas to include, or at the other extreme they gloss over the details and cover too much and say far too little.

If you have an idea for a blog post, try to break it down into small parts or steps. Could each of those parts be separate blog posts? One idea could generate two, three or even four articles by going into detail in each part or step.

For example, you could have “The complete guide to car maintenance” as a blog post, or you could have half a dozen posts looking at how to change a tyre, how to check the oil level, how to check the coolant level, and so on.

Instead of “How to cook an amazing meal for 6 people”, you could break it down into a series of blog posts, like how to cook the perfect roast turkey, top tips for crispy roast potatoes, how to steam vegetables so they keep all their flavour.

Don’t make posts too short, but alternatively, don’t try to cover too much in one post.

79 Where do you get blog post ideas from?

It depends on the type of blog you have and what niche your cover, but often everyday life provides the ideas. Something you did, a problem you solved, something you bought, something you repaired or renovated, a new way of working you just discovered, and so on.

That dinner party for 10 you did last week, your next blog post could be “How to cook for 10 on a budget.” Did you recently clear out the garage? How about a post “Declutter your garage and regain the space with these top tips.” Did you recently go on a long car trip? How about “5 great ways to keep your kids entertained on a car trip.”

There are endless opportunities to write blog posts.

80 Monitor your website

Is your web hosting reliable? How do you know? You might visit your site several times a day and because it is working, you assume it is working all the time. However, it may not be.

For some strange reason, websites go down. Then they start working again all by themselves. Your site can be offline for a minute or an hour, it varies, but if the few minutes it is offline is when you are fast asleep in bed, grabbing a lunch break or watching a movie at the cinema, you will never know.

You should set up a website monitor that records when your site goes down and when it comes back up. It costs nothing and it emails you to let you know what is happening. You may be surprised at how reliable or unreliable your web hosting is.

Check your website uptime at the Uptime Robot website

Here is an article explaining how to set up UptimeRobot

81 Share like crazy to get visitors

There is a fine line between sharing and over-sharing links to your site. Share too little and you will not get many blog visitors, but share too much and you could be labelled a spammer and get blocked by services. You have to get it just right, sharing as often as you can, but without triggering spam filters.

Here is a Google Doc listing places to share links.

82 Not everyone knows what you know

When trying to come up with ideas for blog posts, it is useful to realise not everyone knows what you know. You may think something is obvious, but there will be someone, somewhere that does not know it. You can help them with an article.

Whether you are roasting a turkey, painting your house, or trying to grow vegetables, someone will be thankful you explained how.

You can never make things too simple, but you easily can make them too hard by not thoroughly explaining and by skipping over things you think everyone knows.

83 Don’t rely on someone else’s platform

News just broke of a hugely successful website that has announced it is shutting down. Why? It got 70% of its traffic from Facebook and a change to the Facebook algorithm that shows posts in people’s news feeds has decimated their traffic. Basically, hardly anyone is seeing their posts and so they are getting hardly any traffic.

This should be a warning for anyone else that relies heavily on Facebook or Pinterest, or wherever most of your traffic comes from. You need to build diverse range of traffic sources and you should not rely too heavily on one so easily taken away. A tweak to the service’s algorithm and you’re gone!

If you don’t know already, find out where most of your website traffic comes from and if you are getting 70%+ from one place, you need to spread the risk by building alternative sources.

If Facebook is your main source, grow your Pinterest followers. If Pinterest is your number one source, grow Facebook. Grow your traffic from Google search, build up LinkedIn, Twitter and other sources.

84 Single tasking vs multi-tasking

Do you never seem to get things done? Do you have many projects and tasks half finished? Maybe you need to single task rather than multi-task.

There are so many things to do when you have a blog or website that you can get bogged down and never get anywhere. You have things you started, but never finished and your site or posts are permanently under construction.

If this sounds like you, try picking one thing that needs to be done and focus on it. It can be difficult or even impossible to completely ignore everything else, but you can at least make one thing your main focus.

Pick one thing and work at it until it is finished. It could be a post, an update, a redesign, a new theme, whatever. Just finish it. Then pick the next item to finish.

85 What gets shared?

When sharing posts anywhere, not just Facebook, they can use the meta description, first two lines of the text, or the Alt description from the featured image. You can’t force them to use a specific one.

You need to make sure all three are present, that they are all different, and all provide good descriptions of the content.
I often post the link, see which text appears and then use one of the others as my own text.

Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress - enter the Facebook information

Usually the article title and Open Graph description are usually used in shares, but Google in particular, has often been seen to rewrite titles and descriptions. You can’t stop it, in case you were wondering.

86 Avoid nulled themes and plugins

Have you heard of nulled plugins and themes for WordPress? A Google search will turn up dozens of websites providing them, but what are they and should you use them?

#Basically they are premium plugins and themes that have been hacked and stolen. It is like pirate software and people use them to avoid paying for them.

The problem is whoever hacked them and distributes them could have hidden code in them that can be used to run malware, insert spammy links into your site, or even open a backdoor and let a hacker in and take over it.

Avoid nulled plugins and themes firstly because they are illegal and secondly because they could have serious security issues for your site.

87 Make every share unique

All social networks have spam detection systems and some are very sensitive and easy to trigger. Never post the same thing twice and always include substantial text or you may be classed as a spammer when sharing links to your site and blog posts.

88 See what a website is built with

What is the web built with? It might seem like everyone is using WordPress but that is not the case. A site called BuiltWith has the statistics on content management systems (CMS).

Select The Entire Internet in the top right corner. WordPress is the most popular at 53% of sites, but Other (Unknown what the site is built with) is 38%.

If you select the Top 10k Sites in the top right corner, the statistics change quite a bit. WordPress is just 37% of the top 10k sites and Other is 42%. More top sites use some unknown web building system than WordPress. Probably custom builds.

Many years ago I looked at this data and set up a site using WordPress. I also set up a site using the 2nd most popular content management system for the top sites, Drupal.

I think WordPress is so popular because it can be used by non-technical people. It is the simplest way to build and maintain a website.

Drupal is popular among developers creating custom websites for top companies, so is the number 2 cms when you look at the top 10k of sites. I wouldn’t recommend it for bloggers.

89 Never share the same thing twice

Google, Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks and places you can share links have all clamped down on spamming. It is very easy to become labelled as a spammer and you may probably never realise it because often you are not told. You keep sharing links, but just don’t get much from them.

To avoid being tagged as a spammer by the places you share links, never share the same link twice. Every Twitter tweet, every Facebook post, every Pinterest pin, every Google+ post must be difference to all your previous ones.

You must write something unique each time. It is hard and it takes time, but it works. For example, some people have been blocked by Facebook for sharing just two or three times in a day, yet others can post 10 times and not get blocked. Why? They are probably writing unique posts.

Always write unique text accompanying your posts.

90 Think before doing something you may regret

Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should. Someone in a Facebook group asked why his site had zero visitors from Google Search.

It turned out that he had installed a cryptocurrency mining script on his site. When you visited it, it started mining a cryptocurrency, which earned him money. Meanwhile, your CPU usage went sky high and if you were on a laptop your battery drained extra fast.

If you want Google to send visitors to your site through search, make it the best possible experience for them. This is just one example of what not to do and there are plenty of other mistakes you can make.

Even if you are not mining cryptocurrencies, take a hard look at your site and make sure you are doing things that benefit the visitor, not just yourself.

91 Promote your site even when nothing is new

Whenever you write a new post for your blog/website, you should promote it wherever you can to get readers. However, it is wrong to promote only when there is something new.

Separate the writing from the promotion and come up with a promotion plan like:

Sunday = Share on Facebook
Monday = Share on Digg
Tuesday =Share on Twitter
Wednesday = Share on Pinterest
Thursday = Share on Instagram
Friday = Share on Google+
Saturday = Share on StumbleUpon

If you have a new post, share that, but if you don’t, share something else, like a post from last week, last month or even last year if it is still relevant. You will reach new readers. Never stop promoting, even if you don’t have anything new to promote.

92 Build Quora followers

This comes under the umbrella of promotion and it is a way to get you noticed and increase traffic to your site.

Quora is a question and answer website where some people ask questions and other people answer them.

It is not a place where you can post tons of links and you have to be very careful not to make it look like you are simply promoting your own stuff.

There are several things you can do on Quora and one is to create a profile that includes a link to your site. People may see your answers and check out your profile. They can also follow you like on a social networking site.

Here is my profile https://www.quora.com/profile/Roland-Waddilove

Answer people's questions at Quora and you might get some traffic to your site

Occasionally you can slip in a link to a post on your site, but only when it is relevant. One answer I wrote was mailed to 100k+ people! Some will have checked my profile and may even have clicked through to my site.

Add Quora to your list of places to promote yourself and your site.

93 Easy keyword research

Getting noticed by search engines is easy, but getting onto the first page of results is not. One thing you should do is keyword research. What word or phrase are you targeting?

To get ideas for keywords or phrases (long tail keywords), open a new Incognito or Private browsing window. Go to Google and type one letter at a time and see what words and phrases are suggested.

With each keypress a new list of suggested searches is displayed and this shows what most people are searching for. Remember, it must be an incognito/private browser window.

94 How to use keywords

In the last tip I showed how to find keywords and long tail keywords (short phrases), but what do you do with them? Include them in your post!

  1. Try your best to include a keyword in the title.
  2. Try to include a long tail keyword in the first two sentences.
  3. Include keywords in the body of the post.

When search engines index your site they will associate the page with those keywords.

95 About fish and ponds

It is better to be a big fish in a small pond than a small fish in a big pond. I am referring to keywords.

Big sites with lots of staff and money compete for the most popular keywords and phrases and you probably don’t stand a chance of getting anywhere near page 1 of search results.

Unusual keywords have low search numbers, but the competition is low too. You can more easily find yourself on page 1 of search results with an unusual phrase.

There might not be many people searching for your unusual phrase, but if you can get onto page 1 of the results, most of them will come to your site, so you end up being better off.

96 Hide the URL box on the WordPress comment form

WordPress enables people to comment on posts, which is great, but for some strange reason it asks people for a URL. Why? Spammers love it because they can put in the URL to the junk they want to promote, but ordinary folk do not have a URL and you don’t need the URL from those that do. It seems a bit pointless and irritating.

Here is how to remove it. Go to Appearance > Customise > Additional CSS and enter this:

.comment-form-email {display:none;}

Save the changes and go and check the comment form on a post. The URL box has gone.

97 Hide the Email box on the WordPress comment form

The WordPress email form has some odd features, such as a box for people to enter a URL. I showed how to remove that in the last tip. It also has a box for people to enter their email address. Is this useful? How many times have you ever used the email address? With GDPR it also raises problems of data collection, storage and privacy.

Do you really need people to enter their email address? Spammers and bots fill it with junk anyway and it just makes real people uncomfortable sharing personal data. Here’s how to get rid of it.

Go to Settings > Discussion and turn off the required name and email on comments.

Go to Appearance > Customise > Additional CSS and enter this:

.comment-form-email {display:none;}

(It starts with a dot/period.) This line removes the Email box from the WordPress comment form. The name box remains, but it’s not compulsory.

98 Size vs activity for social shares

When looking for Facebook groups, Google Plus communities, LinkedIn groups and other places to promote your posts, you might think the more members there are, the better it is. After all, more people will see your posts.

This may not be true. Instead of looking at numbers of members, look at the activity.

Some groups/communities have thousands of members, but hardly any activity. This is because people just don’t go there anymore. They have moved on and go elsewhere.

For example, on community I am a member of on G+ has around 80,000 members, but looking at the dates on the posts you can see that only two or three people post each week. It is obvious people have abandoned it.

LinkedIn also has groups with thousands of members and little or no activity. No one goes there.

A small group/community that has active members (check the dates on recent posts), is actually more useful and a better place to promote your blog/website. If people visit and post every day, you will reach more people.

Bigger is not always better.

99 Clicks count more than views on social

Are you sharing links to your site and posts on social sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn and others? You should be!

Some of these social sites make it easy to see how many people you are reaching. For example, you can see how many Twitter followers you have and your profile also shows a little chart showing how many impressions your tweets got over the past week. Pinterest shows the number of monthly, weekly and daily views your pins get (upgrade to a business account). You can see in Facebook groups how many members there are or how many times a post was viewed.

It means very little.

Pinterest shows the number of views your pins get

What is most important is the number of people that click through to your site.

Google Analytics can tell you where people came from and it shows the people from each social network. You may be shocked by the low numbers. For example, you could have 1,000 Twitter followers, but you will be lucky if 50 people click links in your tweets. A click rate of 5% is good and some people only get 2 or 3%. Even with 10,000 Twitter followers you might still only get 2-500 clicks through to your site.

It is the same story on Pinterest. Your pins may be ‘viewed’ by tens of thousands of people, but only 5% may click through to your site. A ‘view’ is counted when someone scrolls through their Pinterest feed and your pin goes whizzing by. The person may not have even looked at it, but because it was on the screen it was counted as a view.

Clicks count, views do not.

100 Why should I read your blog?

This is a question you should think carefully about whenever you write a post for your blog or website. When someone sees a link you shared or comes across your page in search results at Google, Bing, or Yahoo, they will make a snap decision on whether to click through to your site.

It should be obvious from the heading or first sentence of a blog post why people should take time out from their busy schedule to read your post.

Give people a reason to read a post, such as how to do something, a solution to a problem, a delicious recipe, or maybe just to have a laugh at a bunch of jokes or animated GIFs. Whatever the content, the reason for reading it must be obvious.

Unless you are a celebrity, people are not interested in what you did last weekend or what you are going to do next weekend, and so on. A post like “10 fun things to do on a rainy weekend” is much more likely to get clicks because people can see the benefits of reading it – learning what to do on rainy weekends.

Why should I read your blog?

More tips!

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2 Comments

  1. Great content! There is so much good advice and you have touched on the ‘like for like’ issue on Facebook, which I had read about ages ago and I think is important as people get carried away with it, in some groups.

    • Like for like, comment for comment, click for click has become so common that people think it is THE way to grow traffic. It might boost your followers or views today, but next week you lose them. It is best to build real followers than fake ones.

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