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What is the Difference Between WordPress.org and WordPress.com?

Are you finally jumping into the world of WordPress and are thinking of building, or having a WordPress website created for you?

It’s easy to get confused about what to do, because there is so much information out “there” about which way you should go when starting your first website. Before you throw up your hands in frustration, first consider what your immediate needs are for your business or website project.

If you don’t see yourself continuing to grow and build onto your website with new products, services and perhaps membership features, then you could easily start out with a free website from WordPress.com.  

However, if you are just beginning a journey of building an empire, you’ll want to start out on your own hosting.  Why? You’ll have more control and a greater ability to move into a higher level of branding and customization for your site.

Thinking about creating a new website?What if you aren’t sure about how far you are going to grow in your business and just want to get started? Perhaps you aren’t ready to invest in your dream yet, and want to try out the world of WordPress before you jump in and swim. You can get started with WordPress.com and build a free website. Later, if you see that you are growing and want to build a website on your own hosting provider, then you can, indeed, import all of your previous blog posts over to your new self hosted WordPress website.

One thing to consider, however, is that if you build a fan base on your WordPress.com free website, and you have a domain name that is tied in with WordPress.com, you may discover that your fan base will drop off, because they aren’t sure where to find you.

To solve that problem, make your last post a post a sort of “marketing announcement” that lets your readers know where to go to enjoy your new-and-improved website. (be sure to include a link to your new site.)

To avoid the problem above of readers not being able to find you, WordPress.com has the ability for you to have your own special domain name, which you will transfer over to your new site, once you decide to build elsewhere.

WordPress.com vs. WordPress.orgTo help you understand the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org, (WordPress.org is the collaborative effort of developers who created the WordPress codex that drives WordPress over all.) Here’s a simple and insightful info-graphic by WPBeginner.com that gives you a visual comparison of these two WordPress sites.

Go to the post and view the infographic  

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WordPress Websites by Shannon Parish

4 Options to Make Your Site a Mobile Friendly Website

April 21st is the deadline that Google has set for people to make their websites mobile friendly.  Here’s 4 options that will give you a mobile friendly website.

 

In this blog post I’m going to provide you with 4 Options to Make Your Site a Mobile Friendly Website.

If your website was built in the beginning era of the Internet, you definitely need a re-design. The earlier thinking was that a nice ‘brochure’ type of site would do well for businesses because of the convenience of access and not having to print and deliver. Brochure websites were always accessible … from anywhere … at anytime.

Blogging on your mobile friendly websiteThen blogging took off and sites became more personable, interactive and relational. Studies were done to determine what people were clicking on, how long did they linger, and where were they looking. Websites then transformed into marketing machines and search engine optimization was the main focus.

But as our cyber world continues to grow and expand, more and more people are upgrading their technology and convenience is within the hand – nearly, at all times – even in the bathroom!

People are searching for websites more from their smart phones, iPads and tablets than they are searching from their laptops or desktop computers.

That means – the entire layout has changed as to what people are clicking on, and how they are interacting with your website.

Instead of being able to access all of your pages and links from the top half of your site, they are now scrolling vertically to get to what they need – so that the images and text need to be larger.

Add to that, an exhausted and information soaked population, people want fewer words, more direct communication and constant call to actions. (tell me what to do and where to go, don’t make me think to hard)

It was inevitable that Google would start indexing mobile websites, mobile friendly websites and mobile apps that were a reflection (and connected to) websites.

In their official blog announcement, Google has given a deadline of April 21st as to when this new algorithm will begin. All sites which do not comply will penalized in search engine rankings if they don’t transition their site to a mobile friendly site.

Now is the perfect time to do that – because everything that worked before now, is now changing.

What steps you can take to adjust to this change.To Do List to make your mobile friendly website

  1. First things first – TEST YOUR SITE with the Google Test Tool for a mobile friendly website to see if you pass their criteria. They will take a snap shot of what their search bots see when they go to your site. NOTE: If your site passes, scroll down further to see what your site LOOKS like, because it may not appear how you want it – and changes will still need to be made.
  2. If you passed the test but you don’t like the way your mobile friendly website looks, then you can TWEAK the site to make it look better. Some images will need to be made smaller – especially those gigantic headers that use to rank and look so well.
  3. Change your THEME. Just move to a responsive WordPress theme that to create your mobile friendly website. This is not an entire remake of your website, but will require some planning regarding marketing and strategy as to how this new layout will convert for you.
  4. If you love your website and just don’t want to change a thing, then CONNECT A MOBILE APP to your site with deep connecting links. When visitors land on your site from their mobile device, they will be given an option of whether they want to view it through your mobile app and will have an opportunity to download your app … or they can look through it the old fashioned way, re-sizing pages and text as they go. (The benefit of considering a mobile app is that readers can make purchases straight from the app, and you can add a rewards card feature to encourage additional future purchasing.)

Mobile apps have an additional monthly or annual cost. You can have control over changes that are made within your app, and you can contact those who have downloaded your app with push notifications. (huge benefit!)

Magic wandTime is passing quickly! Time to shake out the dust and decide what strategic approach to take towards your mobile friendly website.

Contact me now to get started on your mobile friendly website – the deadline is quickly approaching!

Call me at (720) 295-7409

 

Financial options include, but are not limited to:

  • Annual pricing
  • Monthly payments
  • Retainer packages that include mobile friendly updating and regular maintenance
  • PayPal Credit
  • Credit Card

Here’s the official Google announcement and their test tool for your convenience.

Official Google Blog Announcement  |  Google Test Tool

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Creating an Avatar and Why You Need One

avatarsAn Avatar is a specifically sized image that is either your photo, logo or a graphic that you want to represent you. There is a website that I highly recommend, which will facilitate your Avatar following your email address on anything you post information to, such as comments on blogs, including your own.

The site is http://Gravatar.com.  Create an account, include your desired Avatar, profile pic, biographical or company information and the email address you use to make posts. Now, whenever you make a post, your Avatar will automatically follow your email address, where ever you post – and readers can click on your Avatar to get more information about you and learn where they can find you online. This is a must for driving traffic to your website as you work towards building relationships with other bloggers!

So, what size should an Avatar be and how do you formulate one? Where else can you use your Avatar? Here’s a great article post that will give you all the details … Go to:  How to Optimize Your Profile Photos Across Social Media

 

 

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You Have Your Website … Now What?

Careful planningPlanning ahead has definite rewards. When do you need a website? How do you get started if your book hasn’t been published yet? What plugins will you need or want?

In this podcast with Judith Briles on the Your Guide to BOOK PUBLISHING and I discuss the options and features that you need to know that will engage your readers and promote your site effectively.

SEO, social media marketing, functionality … You aren’t just throwing a “BUY NOW” link, an image of your book and your logo into cyberspace and hoping for the best … or are you? Believe it or not, this is the approach that many an author takes when creating a website that they were told they had to have. (Being told you have to have one is no motivation – you need to know why) Judith and I cover a lot of ground in this conversation and give you ideas on how to get this all done while making your life easier too.

Listen in …

On the Air

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Put Out The Firestorm Before It Starts!

Stop the madness!Put out the firestorm before it starts! When do you need a website? How do you get started if your book hasn’t been published yet.

In this podcast with Judith Briles on the Your Guide to BOOK PUBLISHING we discuss a common occurrence with new authors who wait until their book is published before they start thinking about a website. Waiting too long … starts the firestorm and panic – stop it before it starts!

Make-overs, new websites, specialized websites, blogging and getting started on all of it. Your business begins well before you have everything in place. This is not putting the cart before the horse! It’s planning with intention and creates trust with your audience and builds your tribe – who in turn, become your greatest fans and the starting place for your best viral marketing.

Listen in …

On the Air

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Making Additional Money with Your WordPress Site

Early birdThere is a wonderful solution which I’ve just discovered, which can instantly make your site into one that will generate passive income for you.

The name of the service is Viglink and they utilize the keywords that you have in your site to present offers and product suggestions to your readers that compliment the focus of your site. When a visitor clicks on a link and makes a purchase, you will receive a commission.

The beauty of that is that you don’t have to chase after, and find, special affiliate programs and then wade through all of their individual requirements for selling through your site.

Once you get your feet wet with this simple solution, you can move up to other programs to help bring in additional passive income.

If you are worried about your site becoming cluttered with ads and not having control over what your visitors see, you’ll be happy to know that VigLink will only follow your directions regarding what type of content you want shown on your site.

Something to remember is that when you write about a product or service that you use, or a creative tool, a media or electronic tool that you use in your business, you’ll actually be doing your reader a favor by proving them an immediate link where they can purchase what you are writing about. (For specific products, sign up for their affiliate program to ensure that the product you want to be shown will be shown.)

Expand your thinking beyond an online brochure for your business. Your website has the potential to be a workhorse for you and can earn you money … even while you sleep.

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What to Pay Attention To in Your Branding

To Do ListIt’s the subtle things that make up the background of your content that affect your reader and potential customers the most. If there’s a ton of text without much white space, readers move into a subconscious level of irritation or criticism which can backfire on you. Inserting a graph, an image or keeping your sentences short and breaking up your paragraphs, help to move the reader to a more relaxed state of mind to digest and comprehend your content. Bullet points are another way to get to the point quickly, and with a web-based platform, you can add more content and link it to the bullet so the reader has the option to read more, or just skim. color burstColors play another big role in whether or not trust or value is perceived in the correct way. If your site is about massage therapy and whole healing, the last thing you want to do is to create a red site. Red is an aggressive color and speaks of authority, not safety or calm as blue and green does. In a recent interview with Judith Briles for Author U (niversity) we discuss a few more areas for consideration.

Listen:     YourGuidetoBookPublishingLIVE_2013-06-13

By the way …

Branding is NOT about the appearance of your product, nor is it your logo. Branding is how people feel or think about your product or services. The appearance of your marketing material, products and other visual elements are what create that feeling or thought towards your business.

I felt that they were a trust worthy company and I loved your sense of humor and simplicity.

I think you know what you are doing. Everything was laid out well and was easy to find.

Both comments are from customers who have developed an opinion based upon how they felt when they were introduced to a company website. This is what they will tell others who want to know what it was like to work with that company.

And THAT … my friend … is branding.

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The Basics of Branding and Managing Expectations

Thinking about creating a new website?Are you considering creating a WordPress website and you need a little bit more information about what to focus on?

In this podcast with Judith Briles on the Your Guide to BOOK PUBLISHING we discuss the basics of what you need to know in building your WordPress site and how to identify your branding and manage expectations of visitors.

Do you know what branding really is? (it’s not your logo) How do you get visitors to linger on your website? What is the number one thing you need to know to avoid confusing your visitors?

Listen in …

On the Air

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Tips to Help You Build Your Book Business Intelligently

Anthony RobbinsIt’s imperative that you support yourself in a variety of ways with mentors in business as well as publishing!

Your book is a business. It’s a product and is a very expensive calling card to what your real business is – that of the intellectual property that it contains.

While you continue to manage your writing career, keep an eye on what really matters, who you really are and who your target market is. What kind of business are you in … really in? View these short mentoring videos produced by Anthony Robbins regarding key questions that you need to answer in order to succeed in your business in this ever changing, fast-paced world we live in now.

 

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How To Add Images

One bite at a timeBlog posts can be easily misunderstood as incredibly boring if there are no visual clues as to what the post is about. Unless your writing is stellar and the first few words you write capture the imagination of your reader, chances are, they will skim and pass your site by.

Breaking up the monotony of text with photos, clipart, videos or even something as simple as a line or white space will help the reader linger over your words.

This blog post is part of a tutorial on how to insert images into your text and I’ll even show you how to resize them from inside WordPress.

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