WordPress Makes Web/Blog Design Easy!

WordPress makes designing your website or blog easy and is quickly becoming the dominant content manager on the internet. It’s used by companies like large news publishers and as a result, there is a lot of third party support supplying plugins.

WordPress On A Self Hosted Site

WordPress is easy to install and easy to use!

Blog

Although you can find places to have a “free” website or blog, I recommend self hosting using the WordPress Content Management System (CMS). This way you truly control all content. For example, when you have a site with another provider, you are subject to their terms of use and they can arbitrarily remove or block content. Always read their terms!!! By self hosting, you set the terms. Keep in mind, this doesn’t exclude you from common sense, legal requirements and liabilities.

For a self hosted site, you will need a domain and a web host. Pureleverage and Global Virtual Opportunities (GVO) make it really easy! Pureleverage has the basic site set up for you and you can modify. With a GVO hosting account, you can have multiple domains and WordPress installations to keep your different businesses or hobbies separate. You might even want a combination of Pureleverage and GVO depending on your business needs! Just as an aside, they both have business opportunities.

Using GVO hosting, a self hosted WordPress site is really easy to install and not really that difficult to set up. There are many templates and plugins included and they are easily activated within the WordPress dashboard.

WordPress Installation

First you need to log into your control panel. With GVO, it would be Cpanel. Once you log in, go to the Softaculous section and look for the WordPress icon.

Softaculous

This is where you click to start the installation. Once you are on the installation page, it’s pretty much intuitive. Fill in the blanks. Some things to think about before you start the installation are:

  • whether it will be the primary site or secondary,
  • what will you call it,
  • will it be multi site (visit Exclusive Vogue Networking for an example),
  • what do you want it to look like (I recommend Graphene. Visit barryclermont.com for a sample)

WordPress Installation

The reason I recommend Graphene is its simple clean design and responsiveness. It automatically adjusts to present well whether you are using a computer, tablet or smart phone.

WordPress Plugins

Now that you have installed WordPress, you need to decide what plugins to add. Plugins are add-ons that provide further functionality to your site. Here is my list of preferred plugins.

  • BulletProof Security
  • Social Media Feather
  • Tiny MCE Advanced
  • WP Super Cache
  • Yoast SEO

BulletProof Security provides some spam protection, helps block hackers and includes a backup option. Social Media Feather give you those icons people can click to go to your social media sites or automate their posting your blog to their own social media sites. Tiny MCE Advanced provides extra editing functionality when you are creating your blogs. WP Super Cache helps speed up loading your site pages and Yoast SEO helps make sure your posts and pages are found.

WordPress Makes Blogging and Web Design Easy!

WordPressDon’t let the thought of putting your business online scare you. If you can create a document using a word processor, you can create a website and/or blog using WordPress. There are numerous YouTube videos and web sites that can walk you through the process.

Alternatively, there are many service providers out there that can look after it for you. Just make sure they are willing to take a little time to show you the basics so you can make changes afterward.

 

Make it a great Day!

Barry

P.S. What am I thankful for today? I’m thankful for WordPress, GVO and the Internet! What are you thankful for today?

Website Design, Are You Easy To Read?

Website design is fairly easy these days with hosting packages like Pure Leverage but are you sure everyone can read your writing?

Website Design

First, consider the design of the page. I use Pure Leverage and my site is driven by WordPress. There are many great templates available but you need to be careful. Be sure you choose a template that is mobile friendly. In the graphic below, you can see that one of my social media posts was mostly clicked on mobile. In this case, 86.5% of hits were on Facebook Mobile. Just as an aside, I love goo.gl for the insights you can get about who is clicking your links!

website hits by platform

 

Take the time to visit sites that are similar to your business and see what works. How do you feel when you visit those sites. But, be careful not to fall into the trap of just doing what you like to see. Have friends you can trust to be honest give you some feedback.

  • What is “above the fold”?
  • What is the message?
  • Are there too many or not enough graphics?
  • Can it be read by an electronic reader?
  • Are fonts and their colours friendly?

If you want to see what your page looks like on mobile, visit http://mobiletest.me/ and test it out. Visit http://aoda.ca/wcag to learn more about making sites more accessible and there are some links to useful tools to help you.

The Message

Who is your message aimed at? Now you have to think about your target. Who do you want to be reading your blog or website? If you take a look at the graphic above, you will see that there were hits outside of North America. Is it written in language they understand? I’m not referring to English/German/French etc. I’m referring to the ability to understand your words.

InternationalHaving taken in international students who have come to Canada to learn English, I have learned that we often use very confusing words. For example, I was talking to a person who speaks Spanish first, French second and English third. It was a beautiful day and I said “it’s days like this that I want to play hooky”. You should have seen the look I got! Total confusion.

Try your best to use plain language that is easy to understand. Plain language is not necessarily simple words. We often use unnecessary words or use slang when communicating. When you use slang language, understand that the message may be different than the one you intended to convey.

K.I.S.S. Keep it simple. Make sure your website is easy to read and understand.

Make it a great day!

Barry

P.S. What am I thankful for today? I’m thankful for all of my international students, new foods and Pure Leverage. What are you thankful for today?

 

Is your website your own domain?

When you decide to market a product or service and they give you your own website, is the domain really yours?

Website

Your website is what you see when you enter the address in a browser. For example www.YOURNAME.companyname.com

WebsiteUp comes a wonderful site with information all about the company you represent and their products and services. Very professional and should bring you business, right? Now, what if someone decides to remove your name from the address and it goes to the corporate site to see what’s different? There may or may not be a difference except that now all the links go directly to corporate. They make a decision to buy and click a corporate link. They are no longer on your site and the sale is gone. Corporate has no idea how the person got there and sends the referral to someone else. You have done all the promotional work for someone else’s benefit.

The DOMAIN, or dot com part, has nothing to do with you. It’s owned and operated by corporate.

Domain

ContainerA domain is like a container. It holds your website and all of your data. Think about this container like it is a store where you send people to buy your products and services. When you decide to represent a company and their products, you want people to buy from your store, not go directly to your suppliers.

For example, one of our “stores” is http://deniseclermont.com. We made a decision to sell a single service from that “store”.

We don’t anticipate ever stopping the sale of that service so it’s unlikely you will ever see anything else there but, it could happen. If we directed you to the corporate domain and made a change in product offering, we would lose you. Is that what you want to happen to your prospects?

LegalShield Independent AssociatesIn our case, the company has over 40 years history but I have family and friends who have had their chosen product disappear and when they shifted to something different, they had to start all over. In some cases, that was the end of their business.

Another reason for your own domain is the ability to add sub domains to target your offerings in a particular area. Your product or services may have more than one category and it’s confusing when someone comes to the corporate landing page and doesn’t know where to go. With sub domains, you can be specific with your prospect.

For example, we have an offering specifically for small business.

This way, there is no confusion about your intent. Either there is a specific point to your conversation and no confusion about what you want them to consider. When you send them to a landing page with too many offerings you may be confusing your prospect. A confused mind does nothing.

Is There A Learning Curve?

Yes.

You will need to learn how to set up your control panel and then decide whether it’s just to redirect to corporate sites or you want to be blogging as well. For example, I also have a blog at http://barryclermont.com. I didn’t need another hosting package because I purchased on that gives me as many domains as I want so that I can provide for my teams.

Make sure you choose a domain hosting company that will teach you how to use their tools. The reason I chose GVO is that it’s a one stop shop. All the tools you need to market on the internet in one place for less than the cost of an auto-responder from most other providers and they have online videos as well as live training included.

Search my name, Barry Clermont, and see what you find? Who will I find when I search your name? The decision is yours.

Make it a great day!

Barry

P.S. What am I thankful for today? I’m thankful my wife found GVO for me. I’m thankful I found LegalShield for her! I’m thankful I live in Canada where we are free to grow.

What are you thankful for today?