Seattle WordPress Event: Business Websites, WordPress 3.0 and SEO for WordPress

On Tuesday, May 11 in Bellevue (Seattle), Washington, you can hear me (Mark McLaren) and two other WordPress experts talk about 1) WordPress for Business Websites, 2) the latest version of WordPress (3.0), and 3) Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for WordPress. It’s an evening event at Bellevue College, with plenty of time for Q & A and networking.

Anyone who wants to learn WordPress, or learn more about WordPress – definitely check it out!

I will be doing the WordPress Search Engine Optimization presentation. You’ll get all you need to take your WordPress website from the basic default level of search optimization to a truly optimized level using the “All in One SEO Pack” plugin for WordPress. The SEO techniques I’ll talk about work on any website. I’ll just be showing you how to apply them quickly and easily to your WordPress site.

To sign up now, visit the Seattle WordPress seminar website.

The event is called “Explode the WordPress Learning Curve: An Evening with the Experts”. Here are the highlights of this awesome WordPress seminar:

After An Evening with WordPress Experts, you’ll understand:

  • why so may businesses are choosing WordPress for their websites and blogs
  • how to leverage the power and flexibility of a WordPress website to increase sales
  • how easy it is to make the move to WordPress
  • 5 techniques for optimizing your WordPress pages for better search engine rankings
  • the key features of 3.0, the newest version of WordPress

What’s Included in this Event:

  • 3 “mini-seminars” from WordPress experts
  • 15-minute break with time for networking as well as time before and after the event
  • Extended Q & A panel discussion with the experts: Get your questions answered
  • Opportunity to meet the experts at the conclusion of the event
  • Time to visit the presenters’ tables and exchange information
  • Copies of all presentations
  • Additional information on useful tips, plugin’s, themes and resources for WordPress users

Feel free to contact me with questions about the event. For tickets and more information, visit the Seattle WordPress seminar website.

Business Blogging 101 — Free WordPress Tutorials — New to This Site? Start Here:

Welcome to Free WordPress Tutorials – Business Blogging 101! This video is an introduction to the Business Blogging 101 website, a site dedicated to free tutorials and support for WordPress created by Mark McLaren of McBuzz Communications.

Free, Easy WordPress Tutorials

These are all easy WordPress tutorials and they are all free! Whether you have a WordPress blog or a WordPress website, most of the tutorials are for beginners, but there are intermediate-level tutorials and discussion about advanced techniques for WordPress including how to customize a WordPress theme, recommendations about the best WordPress plugins and themes, hacks and workarounds for WordPress using Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), PHP and HTML – and much, much more! 😉

There are a few advanced tutorials. The tutorials’ degree of difficulty is determined by the amount of skill and experience you need with HTML, CSS and in some cases PHP code. If you don’t have experience with these, don’t worry! That’s the beauty of WordPress.

On this site, you will learn about WordPress, Blogging and Online Marketing, including Search Engine Optimization. Ask questions, comment and connect with other WordPress users.

You can use the video player control bar buttons to watch in HD and to watch in full screen mode.

You can become a fan of Business Blogging 101 on Facebook. And follow Mark McLaren and McBuzz on Twitter.

Video Tutorials vs. Text Tutorials

Do you prefer video tutorials or text tutorials? There’s a discussion on the blog of Jaap Haitsma with participants expressing an overwhelming preference for text tutorials. Business Blogging 101 is mostly video tutorials. Although, when I started making tutorials for WordPress in 2007, I used text instructions and screen captures.

When I found inexpensive video-making software, I quickly switched to tutorials using that format. It seemed to me that – especially for beginners – using WordPress is a process that involves moving from one part of the Dashboard to another. It was much more helpful to be able to show where a button is located in the Dashboard and what happens when you click on it without having to make individual screen images of every step. Continue reading

Falling Snow on Your WordPress Blog

Each year around this time you can have some pretty realistic-looking snowfall on your WordPress.com site – like you see here on Business Blogging 101. All you need to do is the following:

In the Dashboard, under Appearance, click on Extras and check the box next to “Show falling snow on my blog. (Only until January 4th 2009.)” Don’t forget to click the “Update Extras” button.

If you want falling snow on a self-hosted WordPress site, check out this post or visit the plugin page where Aen Tan has updated his Falling Snow WordPress plugin. Thanks, Aen!

Happy Holidays!

More General Questions About WordPress? Ask Them Here

[Click here to ask a general question about WordPress]

(you will be taken to the mcbuzz.com website)

Or add your question to the comments on a specific post.

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The first installment of Business Blogging 101’s Answers to General Questions About WordPress has gotten rather long – 65+ entries and counting, including questions and replies – so here’s another post for Questions About WordPress. Keep ’em coming!

WordPress Tutorial – Where is the “Insert Image Into Post” Button – and How to Insert a Photo Gallery

This WordPress tutorial show two things:

  1. Where the “Insert Into Post” button is so that you can insert an image into a WordPress post or page.
  2. How to insert a gallery of images into a WordPress post or page.

Changing Permalinks and Categories Retroactively (on a WordPress site with lots of posts)

A new aquaintance asked me about changing permalinks. He has a successful blog with lots of posts, and he wants to be sure to keep all the link juice associated with the old URLs for those posts.

His site had a kind of default permalink structure that did not use English language words in the URLs. He wanted to change this so that it would use English words, like Business Blogging 101 does.

There’s a plugin for that called WordPress Redirection.

He also wanted to change his category names, since he had been using only one “general” category for all his posts. Here’s my advice on that point.

I’m not sure of all the implications of changing categories retroactively. I know that it’s possible to simply create new categories and assign them to old posts. You can delete an old category and, if that’s the only one assigned to a post, WordPress will ask which category you want to replace it.

Before going further with any of this, be sure to back up your database and also use Tools > Export to export an .xml file of your site. You should back up files in the wp-content directory regularly as well (although that’s not directly affected by these changes).

Some people choose to exclude categories from Google using noindex to avoid duplicate content issues. IMO, I don’t think you need to worry about this. Google has gotten much better at ignoring duplicate content.

If you are very keen on increasing search optimization using categories, you can remove the “general” cat and replace it with more specific cats on each post. I favor using only one category per post. You can use tags for any other keywords you want to associate with posts.

If you have lots of “general” posts, I would not worry about going back to do this. Leave the general category. Create new, more specific categories, and use those going forward. The most important thing for blog SEO is that you keep producing good content on a consistent basis and get lots of comments from readers like you are doing. That will also lead to more people linking to you. The SEO significance of categories on older posts is not nearly as great as these things.

Lorelle VanFossen is a great WordPress resource, in general, and about categories and tags among other things.

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