Your WordPress plugins might be silently losing business data

If your WordPress site uses third-party plugins, you may be experiencing data loss and other problematic behavior without even knowing it.

Like many of you, I’ve become quite attached to WordPress over the past 15 years. It is by far the most popular content management system, powering 28 percent of the Internet, and still the fastest growing, with over 500 sites created on the platform each day. Considering myself well versed in the software, I was surprised to discover — while working on a digital design project for a client — what could be the Y2K of WordPress. Many WordPress plugins are suffering data loss, and it looks like this problem will soon explode if not properly addressed.

The issue is essentially due to the fact that WordPress discards entire datasets even when only one of the data elements within the set contains too many characters for the insertion field. Because WordPress doesn’t log the data loss or any errors related to it, few developers are aware of the issue. And because of one particular scenario involving storing a visitor’s data when they’re connecting with an IPv6 address, the situation is exponentially worse.

Example: Say a WordPress site owner has a plugin installed that lets users add comments. Plugins like that typically store the user’s IP address along with comments they submit, for analytics purposes. For years, plugin developers have assumed that IP addresses were always in the standard IPv4, 15-character format that looks like this: 216.123.123.123. Thus, plugin developers typically set the maximum allowed characters for the IP address database field their plugin uses to about 15-20 characters. However, IPv6 has a much longer 39-character format that looks like this: 2001:0db8:85a3:0000:0000:8a2e:0370:7334.

Unbeknownst to many users, site owners, and developers alike, these longer IPv6 addresses are becoming increasingly widespread. Those new addresses won’t fit into the database fields developers have been using for years. Furthermore, for security purposes, WordPress specifically validates that each part of a data set about to be stored will fit. In the example above, if the IP address is too long, WordPress discards the entire data set (not just the oversized IP address string). Worse, WordPress doesn’t log an error when this happens. The data is simply lost to the ether, without leaving a trace. This two-year-old WordPress bug thread shows how long the WP core devs have known that the community didn’t like this, but they still haven’t addressed it.

Yes, this currently just affects data coming from IPv6 addresses (currently about 17 percent of users). But while IPv6 use may be in the minority right now, it won’t be for long, and as it becomes the majority, these unexplained issues with data loss will reach pandemic proportions if left untreated.

Just how widespread is this?

1.02 million active WordPress plugin installs are silently discarding real visitor logs, content submissions curated by users, and more, right now, all because IPv6 addresses are present in the data being stored. Here are some other interesting stats:

  • 50,336 plugins are available at wordpress.org today
  • 200 plugins (~1 in 250) create IP address fields that are too short
  • Those 200 plugins have over 1 million active installs — a total of 1,023,280.
  • Here’s a publicly-accessible Google Sheet my team created that lists all known offending plugins. For each plugin, that sheet includes one example where that plugin declares an IP address field that is too short.

The fix is easy peasy: You simply need to change the table schema for the column that stores IP addresses from 15 to 39 (or more).

This problem can affect applications other than WordPress; really, any application that utilizes IP addresses and stores them in MySQL/PostgreSQL tables (especially in STRICT mode, which would prevent row inserts) where the column max is expecting a 15-character IPv4 IP address.

Debuggin’ the plugin

I uncovered this situation while recently working on a site that needed a rating system that allowed authenticated users to vote on specific post types. So naturally, I did a search of existing plugins that could meet the requirements and found one fairly quickly, CBX Rating, and it was a breeze to configure and get working. Then came the intermittent reports of the form submissions not going through.

I spent hours deactivating other plugins, digging through code, and guiding users via screenshare. I was unable to narrow it down or find any smoking gun. No success message, no error message, no errors in the console log, nothing in the server logs. How could form submissions be failing without errors?

I remembered something I had seen in WordPress before: row inserts silently failing if the data strings were longer than the table column maximums. So I shifted my attention to the back end, and that’s where I found the problem and my boss, Erik Neff (the company’s CTO), helped identify exactly why it was happening.

MySQL databases, not in STRICT mode, will truncate values if they’re over the max character count for a particular column and will insert the new record with a warning. When in STRICT mode, MySQL will not accept the record and will return an error. WordPress, on the other hand, won’t execute a query if it determines the length is longer than the max, and will instead return false, with no error or warning.

When using the WordPress $wpdb->insert method, you get back a 1 upon success and a 0 upon failure. But a function is called before any mySQL statements are executed, and that’s where the problem lies. The function is called protected function process_field_lengths, and it checks to see if the data’s length is less than the max allowable length for that table column. If the length is longer than allowed, the entire insert is aborted and false is returned with no error message or explanation. This is a known issue with WordPress core, and makes debugging that much harder.

The CBX Rating plugin we were using didn’t account for this failure point. I checked the plugin’s table schema and started increasing varchar max lengths across the board. Touchdown! Soon after, I got wind from users of all types that all forms were now being submitted successfully.

My mind raced to how this could be an epidemic, so Erik and I set out to determine the scale. The result of a (rather lengthy) check of WordPress plugins yielded a list of every place an IP address field was declared with an incorrect length. You can find those results in the Google sheet that I’ve made public.

Brett Exnowski is senior developer at Primitive Spark and specializes in complex web applications.

[“Source-venturebeat”]

How to make your site user-friendly while boosting SEO

Many Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) specialists, content writers, and web designers think of on-site SEO as distasteful, user-hostile work. However, I believe SEO can actually improve the user experience when implemented correctly.

yourstory_SEO

It requires a paradigm shift in the perception of SEO. You must shed outdated SEO concepts such as keyword stuffing, and getting massive amounts of (irrelevant) backlinks etc. An SEO strategy built on top of these tactics is no longer sound, and leaves a bad taste in everyone’s mouth.

This is because Google has come a long, long way since it became everyone’s search engine of choice in the early 2000s. Search is now smarter, faster, and – more importantly – human.

Seven reasons why your business needs SEO marketing

seo-business

Every business needs promotion and SEO is one of the best techniques to promote your business online. Many people consider that ‘SEO is Dead’ but this is not true. This is the most effective marketing technique that enhances your online presence and boosts your ranking in search results. Here in this guide, we have mentioned top reasons that make SEO most successful marketing tool.

  • It still works

This is a proven strategy even major search engines release major updates to its algorithm. Nowadays the core aspect of Search Engine Optimization is focus on experiences of users. If you have user friendly site with proper navigation, then you will definitely get good rankings in SERPs. SEO will work as long as people will use search engines.

  • SEO is an Investment

You will definitely get high return on your investment. You can check web analytics data to observe that there are certain keywords that have great conversion rates for which you rank on page#3 or #2 on major search engines.  If your keywords rank on 1 or 2nd page of Google, you will get lots of clicks and massive traffic to your website. This would be the highest ROI into Search Engine Optimization

  • This is a crucial part of your marketing mix

Search engine optimization is the master when it comes with boost sale and conversion. This is not the only process that is required to take your business to next level or reach your highest marketing potential.  But SEO is important to strengthen each segment of your marketing process.

  • Search Engines are a major gateway

The numbers of products are increasing day by day that rises demands and offers. People check reviews of products online by using major search engines. You have to adapt this trend as this is must. You have to increase your online presence via boosting ranking of your web pages in major search engines.

  • It saves your money

The pricing of SEO differs and this is cost effective. You can promote your business online by using SEO services. This is easier and cheaper way to spread word about your business.  It takes some time to provide results but it produces lasting results. You can get much greater return on investment than anything else. If you get listed on 1st page of Google, you can attract massive traffic to your website that helps increase conversion rate.

  • Your competitors are doing SEO

If you don’t invest in SEO, you may have risk of losing major benefits to know who your competitors are. You can also play ahead of your competitors by engaging in Search Engine Optimization activities.

  • Rise of Mobile:

Nowadays businesses have reached in the palm of customers. People have started using mobiles and they use search engines to find any product and service.

These are seven top reasons that make SEO a necessity for a business. You should look for SEO services to get your business ranked on 1st page. Cross Graphic Ideas is the best SEO Company in Jaipur which offers result driven SEO services Jaipur at best price.

[“Source-udaipurtimes”]

10 Best WordPress Themes to Choose From for Your Next Website Project

10 Best WordPress Themes to Choose From for Your Next Website Project

The digital world is spawning at an exponential rate. Every hour, roughly 1,000 websites are created. We’re talking petabytes of new data every single hour. To understand the sheer size and volume of that, there’s one million gigabytes in a petabyte or 1,000 terabytes. Considering that the human mind is estimated to be able to hold 1.25 terabytes of data, one petabyte is equivalent to approximately 800 human minds.

While those numbers could most certainly shock and awe you, the truth is that many of the newcomers to the online world rely on the WordPress platform to help streamline the process of getting their website up and running quickly and easily. With over 100 million websites and counting, WordPress is by far the most popular CMS in existence. That might be why the WordPress theme market is burgeoning and exploding.

However, with tens of thousands of themes in existence, how do you know which WordPress theme is the best one for your next website project? While this can most certainly be a subjective topic, these pre-built themes, which offer a far smoother transition into cyberspace, are scooped up in droves.

Some of these themes are terrific for ecommerce stores while others are great for starting a blog. However, the best theme for your project will be based on a few criteria. Not only should they be aesthetically appealing to the eye, but they also need to be mobile responsive. Considering that Google’s search is now a mobile-first index, and mobile searches far outpace desktop, responsiveness in design is important.

When a design is responsive, it looks and functions just as well on mobile and tablet devices as it does on desktop. However, building a responsive design on your own is no simple feat. Trust me, I’ve built loads of them. And unless you rely on a system like Twitter’s Bootstrap, building responsive designs for different media types is an exhaustive endeavor. That’s why some of the best WordPress themes have placed special weight on this one crucial aspect.

Related: CMS Battle for Beginners: WordPress vs Joomla vs Drupal (Infographic)

How to choose the best theme for your website.

Whether you’ve just started a business, or you’re trying to figure out the type of business you want to start, there are some things to look for when selecting a theme for your WordPress site. Some themes offer great support for ecommerce stores while others are terrific for membership-based sites. Either way, you’ll usually need some plugins to make everything function smoothly with one another.

After nearly two decades of software engineering, web development and SEO mastery, I can tell you that there are 7 critical categories that any software application or extension (i.e. WordPress theme) is judged on.

1. Ease-of-installation: While there are tons of WordPress themes out there, the best ones are easy to install. There should be a simple interface that will help you get started quickly and easily, without a lot of fuss or programming know-how.

2. Degree of customization allowed: Pre-built add-ons, tailor-made plugins and a high degree of customization make themes that much more powerful. While some themes focus on a high degree of customization, others don’t.

3. Mobile usability: Mobile usability is crucial. Considering Google places heavy weight on this, finding the right WordPress theme that supports a responsive mobile design should be one of the defining factors in your quest for the ideal theme.

4. Overall speed: As a developer, I can tell you firsthand that your style of coding counts for a lot. It can either be bogged down by excessive code, or be light and compact. The latter is important to facilitate the overall speed of page loads, which is a crucial factor when it comes to things like SEO and visitor retention.

5. Aesthetic appeal of design: The aesthetic appeal of the theme is important. How polished is the look and feel? Does it look amateur or professional? People pay acute attention to design, so be sure to select the right theme that supports a high-quality design.

6. Customer reviews: Reviews are important when it comes to any product or service. And, when it comes to discovering the right theme, you should do your due diligence into the experiences of others. What’s the general consensus on that theme? Are they authentic reviews?

7. Ongoing support and upgrades: Support is an important aspect in any business, especially in one that requires constant evolution and upgrades to keep up with core upgrades to the WordPress platform. Be sure that whatever theme you purchase, that they provide some sort of on-going or limited support and that they’re constantly evolving, upgrading and adding new features.

Related: 25 Reasons Your Business Should Switch to WordPress

Top themes for WordPress sites.

While any list of themes for WordPress might be considered subjective, the preceding list of criteria help to laser-focus the approach to finding the perfect one. Below are what I consider to be some of the best themes that are out there.

1. X-Theme

I’m partial to X-Theme. It’s the theme that I presently use on my blog. And I’ve had an incredible experience with it. It hits all 7 of the criteria that I’ve laid out and does so particular well. X-Theme was created by ThemeCo, and it offers a highly-customizable, mobile-friendly, easy-to-use interface for your WordPress website. This one is definitely worth checking out.

2. Avada

Another one of the most versatile themes I’ve come across out there, Avada is one of the best-selling themes of all time and was created by Theme Fusion. It offers up a powerful design interface, allowing you to customize nearly all of the graphical elements of your WordPress site.

3. Hexater

Hexater is a fantastic theme that allows you to quickly and easily customize your site without investing hundreds of hours trying to figure out how it works or having a PhD in graphic design. This theme offers quick-to-market renditions for things like product launches, ebooks and niche authority sites, as just a few examples.

4. BeTheme

BeTheme is a massive theme built for WordPress with over 260 variations that can be launched with a single click. This powerful theme is beautiful, responsive, fast-loading and highly customizable. The company offers fast and reliable support, lifetime updates and the framework is optimized for SEO.

5. The7

The7 is one of the most customizable themes that are available for the WordPress platform. It includes a visual composer with a beautiful design wizard and over 750 theme options, along with over 26 pre-built websites that are quickly and easily launchable with a single click.

6. Flatsome

Flatsome is a great theme if you’re planning to run an ecommerce store with the WooCommerce plugin. It’s by far one of the best-selling WordPress themes for WooCommerce out there. It’s highly customizable, provide on-going updates, is fast-loading, boasts a responsive design and has beautiful pre-built designs with on-going updates.

7. Uncode

Uncode is a WordPress theme that gives you with the ability to create beautiful designs within an ultra-fast-loading framework. There are over 200+ layouts, a versatile visual composer and provides over 30 ready-for-market designs to get you up and running quickly and seamlessly.

8. Genesis

Gensis is a framework for WordPress that allows you to create beautiful and stunning websites that are highly customizable. This theme offers a light-weight design that’s highly optimized for speed, and provides advanced customization options, giving you the ability and flexibility to build just about any type of website with the framework.

9. Pixelgrade

Pixelgrade offers a visually-stunning WordPress theme that’s designed for a variety of situations, best suited for a variety of occupations such as restaurateurs, photographers, bloggers, designers and more. The theme is customizable, responsive and very easy-to-use.

10. Storefront

Storefront is a bulletproof WordPress theme that was specifically designed for the WooCommerce add-on. It’s a great way to build an ecommerce store quickly and easily, offering up extensible customization options with a fast-loading framework that makes creating an online story easy and straightforward.

[“Source-entrepreneur”]

Walkthrough – How to Conduct a Technical SEO Audit for Your Site

seo audit

What is an SEO Audit?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Audit is an evaluation of search engine friendliness of a website in a number of specific areas.

It identifies issues that need improvement, can be a basis for an action plan and helps to keep a website up-to-date with newest developments in a search marketing. General in-depth SEO Audit strategy usually includes 4 important parts:

  • Technical Analysis
  • On-Page Analysis
  • Off-Page Analysis
  • Competitive Analysis and Keyword Research

When is an SEO Audit needed?

Nowadays SEO industry is changing rapidly, as the content requirements set up by Google are quite high and are getting higher every day. So it is becoming more and more important to keep an eye on the website’s health. For that purpose, SEO industry has both SEO specialists and a number of automated tools.

Latest investigations recommend a quick SEO Analysis every month and in-depth full SEO Analysis once a quarter or at least twice a year, for the website to be competitive and well-visited. Also, it is important to do an SEO Audit at the beginning of a new project or before the first website release.

Why is Technical SEO Audit important?

As a part of a full SEO Audit, the technical analysis is a first thing to do, for it shows whether the website is working properly. If the website has a lot of technical issues, it affects general website performance and a number of visits.

Technical SEO Audit is aimed to ease the crawl and indexing the website in search engine, find broken links, improve rankings and optimize the overall speed of the website work.

It is a basis of the SEO Audit strategy. Technical analysis can be compared to a foundation of a house. If a foundation is bad or broken, everything else will be crooked too.

What is checked by Technical SEO Audit?

As already mentioned, technical analysis is the best place to start a complete SEO Audit. It will bring quick wins and will help to plan the basic improvement of the website. The main aspects to be checked are websites:

  • Accessibility
  • Indexability
  • Site Performance

Let’s make a short overview of each of them.

Accessibility

It is important to make sure that the website’s content is available for search engines. When this step contains even one single mistake, the website won’t be crawled by search engines, which leads to the lack of rankings, for nobody will be able to find such a website. This issue, though, is easy to find and fix. The most used are the Robots.txt Checker tool. It will find whether there are any pages blocked from crawling.

Accessibility checks up also include an investigation of HTTP Status Codes. The process is well-known. A crawler requests a specific page of a website, and a web server gives back an HTTP status code with a response. So the response code should be marked with the number 200, it would mean that everything is working fine. If a status code returns with 4xx or 5xx, it means something went wrong and has to be fixed.

Canonicalization is another important thing to check under Accessibility point. It is dealing with duplicated pages, like

–         http://www.sample.com

–         https://www.sample.com

–         http://sample.com

–         http://sample.com/index.php

For a user, all these URLs seem to be one page, but for a search crawler, each of them is a unique page. On this small example, we illustrate that there is a big number of duplicated URLs coming up when dealing with a single homepage. No need to talk about the entire website. Canonicalization is a process of creating a redirection of all these duplicated pages to an original one.

Popular Read:  AngularJS vs React – War of Facts | An Infographic

Interlinking is the last thing we will mention under Accessibility point. Interlinking is a process of creating internal links between all the pages of the website. If some of the pages stay isolated, crawler won’t be able to find them. Which also means visits decrease.

Indexability

Checking accessibility of the website ensures the visibility of a website in the search engines. Now search engines are actually allowed to access the pages of the website. But this is not enough for a website to be visited.

Next thing in the check up list should be an investigation on how many of those accessible pages are indexed by web crawlers. The more pages of the website are indexed, the higher is the rating of the entire website and the higher status in a search queue.

To check websites indexability there are different tools, like Google Webmaster. They will point out how many pages of the website are indexed.

Site Performance

Speed. Is. Important. This is the big thing to remember when doing a technical analysis. Nowadays people tend to visit websites via smartphones or tablets, which usually means the usage of a slower mobile internet connection. If the website takes more than 5 seconds to load, nobody will wait. They simply сlick ‘return’ and go to the next search result. That’s why the speed of a website load is a very high priority.

There is plenty of different tools to check whether the website is running fast enough and whether it is compatible with smartphones and tablets. Each of them can be used.

2 Ways to Perform a Technical SEO Audit

SEO is becoming a big part of IT industry, and this rapid development hasn’t gone unnoticed. Industry’s ‘big players’ know how important is the upbringing of young specialists with a good insight on SEO tendencies. That is why SEO is not a rare topic for student’s works now. On contrary, students examine case studies of successful SEO strategies and write analytical works about the industry overall, about how SEO has changedand on a  smooth adaptation to these changes.

SEO specialist becomes a popular and wanted position, even though it demands a detailed, attentive and patient attitude to websites analysis. The big increase is seen in developers creating of automated tools and applications for helping people to cope with all the necessary moments in SEO Audit. The industry is attracting a lot of attention.

Now, we can say, there are two main ways to perform a Technical SEO Audit for a website.

  1. Order Audit from SEO analyst

SEO specialist is someone who can perform an in-depth investigation, analyze every aspect of the website health, create a report about the issues and make a good plan how to improve them.

It is important to remember, that there is no need to pay to a ‘specialist’ who will only use automated tools and present the report done by programs. A true SEO specialist surely uses tools and applications, but still, he performs a deep analysis of the reports and creates a strategy to improve the situation.

  1. Use automated tools for SEO Audit

Also, there is an option to perform a Technical Audit without an SEO specialist, and it is available if you are familiar with SEO techniques and have good analytical skills. There is a number of tools and applications to do that. But, we should mention, it is a time-consuming process, that will demand patience, accuracy and strategic thinking. The application or tool most surely won’t come up with a brilliant solution to the web sites problems. The best thing it can do is to point them out. If you are enough self-confident, go straight to the next point of our article. We will briefly overview the most popular tools and applications to perform Technical SEO Audit.

Popular Read:  Why Technology is a Breakthrough Factor in the B2B eCommerce Space in India?

Tools for Technical SEO Audit

  1. Screaming Frog or Xenu

Tools like Screaming Frog and Xenu check how many pages of the website are indexed. They allow to take a website and crawl through its pages like search engines do. These tools detect issues like as incorrect canonicalization, internal redirects and duplicated pages on different URLs. Screaming Frog is free to use if a website has less than 500 pages. If the website is bigger you would need either to pay for a Screaming Frog subscription (apr. 126$ per year for unlimited access) or use another tool, like Xenu, which is free of charge.

  1. IIS SEO Toolkit

Similarly to Screaming Frog, IIS SEO Toolkit works from the desktop and analyze web site’s how searchable the website is. Still, it differs a bit. It helps to improve web site’s relevance in search results by recommending how to make the site content more search engine-friendly.

  1. SEMrush Site Audit

SEMrush Site Audit advantage is crawling a website from a web browser, creating an online report with potential issues in an easy-to-read format with an option to export and perform offline analysis. Also, a customer benefits from comparative and historical sections. They show whether implemented changes had a good or bad SEO impact on the website.

  1. Pingdom DNS Check

A helpful tool to avoid crawl errors, check DNS health and whether DNS servers are set up correctly. Easy and quick check up to save nerves and time in future.

  1. Builtwith

Is good for identifying areas of SEO concern. It checks the architecture of a domain and creates a report on its structure. So, the report will present the information on the server type, operating system, about the installed plugins, etc. So, the user knows the things that make up the website in advance and has the possibility to resolve the potential issues regarding them.

  1. GTmetrix

As we already know, speed really matters. Not a single user will stay on the website that takes ages to load. And by ‘ages’ here we mean ‘more than 5 seconds’ time.

A faster website is a website, that is crawled more. A faster website is attracting more visits. A faster website has good rankings.

GTmetrix is a free online tool, that goes through the page and shows the elements that have to be improved as they are causing a slow load. It also includes the history of a website speed, if used several times.

  1. Google Webmaster Tools

The name speaks for itself. Google nowadays is one of the most recognized brands and one of the most trusted. Its Webmaster Tools help a lot in defining issues with the on-page, link and technical health of a website. It is good in looking for crawl errors, to have a look on pages indexation, find structured data issues, blocked resources, and many others.

Summary

An SEO audit itself can be an exhausting thing to perform, still, it definitely will bring benefits for the website. Technical analysis is considered to be the basis of all the Audit. It indicates main technical issues and problems, including:

  • Website’s accessibility
  • Indexability
  • Site Performance

Plenty of automated tools and applications are already developed to perform a technical audit quickly and easily. They differ in their functions and capabilities, but all of them are detail oriented and help to find even tiniest mistakes.

Still, a powerful tool called a human brain is still needed to perform analysis of all the automated reports and outline the state

[“Source-iamwire”]

How to Install a WordPress Plugin on Your Website

If your website was built using WordPress, one of the best things you can do for your small business is to learn how to install a WordPress plugin.

While that may sound like hyperbole, consider this: WordPress plugins, the majority of which are free, extend and expand the functionality of your website up to and including the ability to automate and manage your business — from online marketing to lead capture and from sales to delivery — faster and more consistently than you do today.

How many more clients or customers could your business add and serve using that extra time?

That’s the power of WordPress plugins.

There are currently more than 36,375 plugins available at wordpress.org. That’s a lot. But don’t let the sheer number of plugins scare you away, because we’re going to show you how to pick a good plugin out of that pile. Then we’re going to show you how to install a WordPress plugin you chose on your own site so you can start reaping the benefits of the plugin’s added functionality to manage your business.

Good to Know Before Moving On

Hosted vs. Non-Hosted

Of course, WordPress comes in two flavors: hosted  and self-hosted.

When you create your WordPress site over at wordpress.com, you’re using the hosted option. While not as customizable as the self-hosted option, it’s the perfect platform if you want to get up and running quickly. Unfortunately, your choice of plugins is much more limited when your site is hosted and that curtails the benefits you can realize from using plugins.

If you create your WordPress website over at one of the many available hosting companies, you’re using the self-hosted option. Infinitely customizable, self-hosted WordPress sites can use any of the 36,375 plugins available over at wordpress.org and that’s a good thing.

Two Key Factors to Consider Before Selecting a WordPress Plugin to Install

Because of feature enhancements and bug fixes, WordPress’ code is updated on a fairly regular basis. After each update, there’s always a chance that a plugin that worked with the older version of WordPress may not work with the new one.

To make a particular plugin work with the latest version of WordPress, it needs to be updated as well and therein lies the problem. Since most plugin developers offer their work for free, they sometimes drop the project somewhere along the way and the plugin stops getting updated.

These plugins are “dead” and if a plugin you are using dies, you’ll need to search for a replacement.

To minimize the chance that you’ll face this headache, you should always pay attention to these two factors when selecting a plugin to install:

When Was the Plugin Last Updated?

A plugin that gets updated often is a plugin that is less likely to die.

To figure out if your plugin has been updated to the latest version of WordPress, first visit the plugin’s page on wordpress.org and look underneath the header on the right. There you’ll see up to which version the plugin is compatible (in the image below, that’s version 4.1.1).

how to install a wordpress plugin

Next, head on over to the front page of wordpress.org and look at the lower of the blue download buttons on the right. As you can see, WordPress version 4.1.1 is the latest WordPress update, so the plugin above is A-OK.

how to install a wordpress plugin

Another way to check this is to search for a plugin using your WordPress dashboard (more on how to run that search in just a bit).

As you can see in the search results below, one of the plugins was tested and declared “Compatible” and one was not. Always try to select plugins that are tested and compatible as that means they’re up to date (assuming of course that you keep your WordPress version up to date which you should).

how to install a wordpress plugin

One other thing to beware of is when the “Last Updated” date is more than a year old (and many, many of them are). If that’s the case, it’s likely that the plugin is dead.

Do the Developers Provide Timely Support?

Since most plugins are free, there’s not a lot of incentive for a developer to provide support. They need to have the passion to continue supporting their work and the drive to see it through.

As this is the case, you should always check on the level of attention a developer devotes to support before selecting their plugin. To do so, visit the plugin’s page on wordpress.org and click on the “Support” tab as shown below:

how to install a wordpress plugin

Once you’re at the support discussion forum for that plugin (as shown below), look around to see what you can find. Does the developer respond in a timely manner or do questions languish for weeks? Do they provide service with a smile or are they snippy and rude?

how to install a wordpress plugin

Bad service is a strong sign that the plugin may be dying.

How to Install a WordPress Plugin

There are two ways to install a WordPress plugin using the WordPress dashboard:

  1. Search for a plugin and install the one you want to use, and
  2. Upload a .zip file containing the plugin and install its once it’s ready.

Search for a Plugin and Install the One You Want to Use

Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Login to your WordPress dashboard and click “Plugins” in the left column:

Your WordPress Dashboard

  1. Click on “Add New” under “Plugins in the left column to be taken to the, “Add Plugins” screen:

how to install a wordpress plugin

Here, you can begin your search for plugins using the first of three methods. Using the links at the top, you can look for “Featured”, “Popular”, Recommended” and “Favorites” plugins. This is the best way to search if you want to explore what’s out there for you to use for your own site.

  1. If you know the name of a plugin you want or some keywords for what the type of plugin you want does (e.g. social sharing, image slider), the second way to search is the search field on the top right of the “Add Plugins” screen:

how to install a wordpress plugin

This image also shows the, “More Details” link that we’ll talk about in step 5.

  1. The third and final way to search for a plugin is to use the tags at the bottom of the “Add Plugins” screen. This method combines the exploring of the first search method with the refinement of the second search method:

how to install a wordpress plugin

  1. When you want to take a closer look at a plugin, click the “More Details” link (as shown in the image under step 3 above) and you’ll get this pop-up details screen:

how to install a wordpress plugin

Note the tabs along the top (under the red image). Here’s where you can learn all about the plugin as well as see screenshots of the plugin in action.

If you’re ready to install this plugin, click the blue “Install Now” button on the bottom left of the details screen.

  1. Once the install is complete, you’ll see the following screen:

WordPress Plugin Installed - Activate?

It is possible to install a plugin without activating it (e.g. you install a new plugin but want to minimize the impact if something goes wrong when you activate it so you don’t activate it until the weekend when your website traffic is lower), which is why you see the choice to activate the plugin above. Let’s say we’re ready to forge ahead and click the, “Activate Plugin” link.

  1. And your plugin is installed! Congrats! To start using your plugin, look for it’s menu link in one of three places:
  • The left column,
  • Under the “Plugins” menu, or
  • Under the “Tools” menu as shown in this example:

how to install a wordpress plugin

Upload a Zip File Containing the Plugin and Install its Once it’s Ready

Often, a WordPress plugin will have a free version with basic functionality and a premium version with expanded features.

When you purchase a premium plugin, you typically receive a .zip file containing the plugin. Use this approach to install your new plugin:

  1. Download the plugin according to the developer’s instructions. You can also download any of the free plugins on wordpress.org if you want to use this install method as opposed to the one above. In that case, each plugin has a button like the one shown below:

how to install a wordpress plugin

  1. Once you click the download button, you’ll see a pop-up like this:

Choose to save the file and then click, “OK”:

how to install a wordpress plugin

  1. Next you’ll need to tell your browser where you want the file saved to. Make sure you select a spot that you’ll remember.

Note: if you don’t see a screen like the one below, your file was saved to you “Downloads” directory automatically so look for it there.

how to install a wordpress plugin

  1. Now that you have the plugin .zip file downloaded, it’s time to upload it to your site using the WordPress dashboard.

Head on over to the “Add Plugins” screen and click the “Upload Plugin” button as shown below:

how to install a wordpress plugin

  1. On the next screen, click the “Browse” button:

how to install a wordpress plugin

  1. Then, in the window that pops up, find the plugin’s .zip file, click on it and then click the “Open” button:

how to install a wordpress plugin

  1. Now that you’ve told WordPress which file to upload, click the “Install Now” button to begin:

how to install a wordpress plugin

  1. And finally, we’re back at this screen. Head on back to the, “Search for a Plugin and Install the One You Want to Use” section and pick up from step 6 to finish up. Congrats! You’ve installed a WordPress plugin for your site.

[“Source-smallbiztrends”]

Kodi Couldn’t Care Less if Your Illegal Plugins Don’t Work

Image result for Kodi Couldn't Care Less if Your Illegal Plugins Don't WorkNews just in, Kodi doesn’t care if your illegal plugins aren’t working, and you certainly shouldn’t tweet them asking for tech support if you’ve been streaming Sky Sports and now can’t. The terse responses on Twitter are somewhat telling that the people behind the media centre apps have had it.

In one response it politely explains that it’s not connected to the recent failure of TVAddons.

ian @TheSalang

Hey @KodiTV what’s the update on the exodus add-on? I recall a tweet about it losing a number of providers temporarily.

 Follow

Kodi

@KodiTV

@TheSalang We have nothing to do with piracy add-ons nor do we provide support for them. http://kodi.wiki/view/Free_content 

  • 11 Retweet

  • 1111 likes

Twitter Ads info and privacy

There’s another polite reply here, even the face of a rude user trying to get help with “their specific problem”.

body { display: inline-block; width: 613px; height: 110px;} (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});”);document.close();})();” style=”margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; font-family: inherit; font-size: 16px; vertical-align: baseline; max-width: 100%; display: inline-block; width: 613px !important; height: 110px !important;”>

Mclemore💸 @AaronMclemore18

@KodiTV That’s not helping me how to necessarily fix mine though

 Follow

Kodi

@KodiTV

@AaronMclemore18 That’s the point. You need to enquire elsewhere regarding your piracy add-ons. We don’t provide support for them.

  • 11 Retweet

  • 1313 likes

Twitter Ads info and privacy

And then there’s this truth bomb, deleivered to yet another person that doesn’t seem to understand what Kodi is, and how it’s a non-profit that has, essentially been running since 2002.

 Follow

Kodi

@KodiTV

You obviously have no clue what Kodi actually is. We make a media player. There’s no “operations”. We don’t provide content. C U in 10yrs https://twitter.com/danguirguis/status/878280248910991361 

  • 5555 Retweets

  • 467467 likes

Twitter Ads info and privacy

You can sort of see their point. Kodi is very popular with two groups of people, enthusiast home entertainment users who have their own TV content and who want to stream from the many legal outlets like YouTube on their TV. Kodi is a great aggregator of content, and its own plugin channel is all legal stuff.

Then there are the people who buy Kodi Fully Loaded boxes on eBay and think that it’s some sort single company providing all these services. Either they’re ignorant to the illegality of these boxes, or they know and chose to ignore that. But enough of them are confused about Kodi’s role in the whole thing.

However you look at it, unofficial plugins aren’t the Kodi team’s problem and you’d be advised not to ask them about your copyright infringing woes. It is, of course, a reality that some people will want to use Plex, Kodi and any other system for breaking copyright rules, but those people need to just keep it to themselves. The same way one avoids snorting coke directly in front of a policeman.

[“Source-gizmodo”]

THE BEST IOS 10 WIDGETS FOR YOUR IPHONE OR IPAD

best ios 10 widgets

We’ve shown you all the great things iOS 10 has to offer, but one of the best features is the ability to add widgets. In iOS, widgets aren’t a separate download. When you download an app, if a widget is available for that app, as is the case with Google Maps, it will be in the list of widgets automatically. Unlike Android, widgets don’t live on the home screen — they’re a part of the Notification Center, which means that you can access them all with a simple swipe.

How to access and add widgets

Keep in mind that you can access widgets on your iPhone by swiping right on the lock screen or home screen, but also by swiping down to access the Notification Center and then swiping to the right. To add widgets, simply scroll all the way down and tap Edit.

If you’re still finding your way through iOS, don’t forget to take a look at our iOS 10 tips and tricks. Now let’s take a closer look at some of our favorites widgets in iOS 10.

Fantastical 2 ($5)

best ios 10 widgets fantastical 2
Fantastical 2 is one of the most powerful calendar apps you can download for iOS. You can use it as a reminders app, to schedule appointments, and to help you organize your life. You have an expansive view of your reminders or events that make it very easy to handle. The widget alerts you of anything coming up throughout your day, whether it’s an appointment or a reminder. The search feature is very handy as you can search your calendar for specific events or reminders. It will even sync with your Facebook events. This app serves as a powerful calendar app if you want to replace Apple’s stock Calendar app.

Download now for:

IPHONE IPAD

Copied

best ios 10 widgets copiedHave you ever had to copy and paste things into a document or an email? If you have, then you know how frustrating it can get going back and forth between webpages or images. Copied is the perfect solution for this problem. This clever iOS widget keeps a history of things that you have copied, whether they are images or text. You can copy what you need and then use the widget to paste your images or text into the document or note. Instead of going back and forth between several things, all you have to do is pull down the Notification Center, and everything you copied is in the widget for quick and easy access.

Download now for:

IPHONE & IPAD

Cortana

best ios 10 widgets cortanaIs Siri letting you down sometimes? Well, the good news is that Microsoft’s Cortana is available for iOS. Having Cortana on your iPhone is an excellent idea if you’re a Windows user. When you use Cortana on your PC to set a reminder, for example, she can alert you right on your iOS device. Siri remains the best option if you want to control your iOS device with your voice, but Cortana is a great addition to iOS. The widget makes it easy to set reminders or ask Cortana a question.

Download now for:

IPHONE

ESPN

best ios 10 widgets espnESPN is a must download if you’re a sports fan and need to have quick and easy access to the latest scores. The widget is extremely useful because when you first set up the app, you can customize it with your favorite sports. That means all the information that you get in the widget is important to you, instead of being a random ticker of sports scores. You can open the app itself through the widget, and there you will find all the latest sports articles and videos.

Download now for:

IPHONE & IPAD

Google Maps

best ios 10 widgets google mapsThe Google Maps widget is one of the most powerful in iOS. Once you install the app, you have two widgets that you can add — Nearby Traffic and Nearby Transit. You can update departure times near you right from the widget to find transit options, while the Nearby Traffic widget locates you and lets you know how the traffic conditions are in the vicinity. In many ways, Google Mapsremains the go-to maps app in iOS. Unlike the Apple Maps Transit widget, with Google’s Nearby Transit you can see the line schedules around you. In contrast, Apple Maps needs you to add your favorite lines before it shows you anything in the widget.

Download now for:

IPHONE & IPAD

Launcher

best ios 10 widgets launcherIf you have hundreds of apps and you’re getting a bit overwhelmed, Launcher can make your life a lot easier. The app lets you create a launcher for an action or app that you need to access quickly. If you need to play a favorite song, email a specific contact, or get directions with just one tap, this is the iPhone widget for you. The app is free to download, but there are in-app purchases to unlock all the features.

Download now for:

IPHONE & IPAD

Todoist

best ios 10 widgets todoistThe best way to describe this iOS widget is that it is simple and fast. The widget lets you add or mark your to-do items as finished. Items disappear from the widget as you check them. It makes organizing your tasks very easy. The basic functionality of the app is free, but if you want to set reminders for something on your list, for example, you will have to upgrade. The app has a premium subscription that is billed annually at $29, but if you only need the basics, then the free version of this widget is perfect.

Download now for:

IPHONE & IPAD

Weather Underground

best ios 10 widgets weather undergroundThe Weather Underground widget is one of the best weather-related iOS widgets out there. When you install the app, you get access to two widgets. WU Weather lets you see the weather throughout the day. You have a choice to see a graph or to show the weather conditions right on the widget. The WU Radar widget shows you satellite information based on your current location. If you want to see a satellite animation view, you can launch that right from this widget.

Download now for:

IPHONE & IPAD

Workflow

best ios 10 widgets workflowWorkflow helps you get things done quickly. When you open Workflow, you can create shortcuts to things that you want to do. You can use the app to add a workflow. You can see each workflow in the widget in the form of an icon. When you tap the icon, it will perform that task. With one tap, you can post the last picture you took to Instagram, or you can share whatever you copied into your clipboard. There are many actions you can add to the widget, and we’re confident that you will love how much time this widget saves you during the day.

Download now for:

IPHONE & IPAD

Favorites

best ios 10 widgets favoritesApple’s Favorites widget is one of the best iOS widgets around, and you don’t need to install anything. When you add a favorite in iOS, it will ask you to choose what you want to do when you tap on the contact. You can choose to call, iMessage, FaceTime, or email them. It depends on the information that you have for that contact. You can add the same contact a few times to accomplish a different task. You can add them once to call them and once to send them a message. The widget shows you all your favorites after you add them using the Phone app. Now you have a way to call or message someone quickly without having to open the phone app, or even unlock your device.

If you’re still learning how to use iOS and are having any problems, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Make sure you read through our guide on how to fix the most common problems with iOS, and to compliment all your new widgets, don’t forget to check out our choices for best productivity apps for iOS.

[“Source-digitaltrends”]

9 Best WordPress Security Plugins to Secure Your Website

Wordpress security

WordPress is an open-source platform and it also is the most popular content management platform there is today. But the problem is it offers basic security that is not equipped for dealing with DDoS and brute force attack as well as spamming.

The worst part is that hackers get crafty each time WordPress beefs up security and many users are vulnerable to hacking and intrusive strikes. Protecting your WordPress website doesn’t only mean installing plugins. You have to make sure that you have done your homework by taking all the necessary measures to secure your website. Installing a security plugin means going the extra mile in order to protect your website from malware and other attacks.

Therefore, it falls on us to guide such impulsive users on how they should harden the security of their WordPress site by using the following plugins:

1. Sucuri Security

Sucuri happens to be one of the most recognized names when it comes to online security in general. It offers a mass of amazing features such as:

Security Activity Audit Logging: This feature is used to monitor all security-related events that regards your WordPress site. For this thing, any changes that occur with the application is taken as a security event.

File Integrity Monitoring: This feature compares a known good with the current state. If the current state is different from the known good, then you have a problem. When the plugin is installed, it will create a known good that is all of the directories of the root of the install.

Remote Malware Scanning: This is powered by the free security scanner – SiteCheck, which basically scans your site remotely for any malware.

Blacklist Monitoring: Another great feature of the Security Malware Scanner is that it makes use of various blacklist engines such as Sucuri Labs, Google Safe Browsing, Norton and AVG among so many others.

Effective Security Hardening: Sucuri is tasked with cleaning over 100 websites a day and that too with security hardening configurations.

Post-Hack Security Actions: No matter how solid you think your security is, it is inevitable that you will get hacked. That’s why security offers Post-Hack Security Actions that enable you to get around the problem.

Security Notifications: It’s useless having all those security features unless you are alerted of the issues and that is where security notifications come into play.

2. iThemes Security

iThemes Security is by far the best WordPress security plugin that you will ever find. It has over 30+ ways of protecting and securing your WordPress website. It also blocks suspicious users and prevents brute force attacks.

Seeing as how WordPress is a common target for hackers due to weak passwords, plugin vulnerabilities and obsolete software, iThemes Security aims to lock down WordPress, repair common holes, prevent automated attacks and enhance user credentials.

3. Jetpack

In spite of it not being a security plugin so to speak, Jetpack includes an array of modules that strengthens your site. You no longer have to worry about downtime, data loss or hacking anymore.

Jetpack intelligently monitors your site, guards it against brute force attacks, scans for malicious codes, secures your logins, and backs up all of your data. It also includes a 2-factor authentication module via WordPress.com. The premium plans let you use malware scanning and automatic site backups.

4. All In One WP Security & Firewall

Here is another commendable WordPress security plugin that is robust, stable, well-supported and easy to use. It even goes the extra mile by adding further security and firewall using a security plugin that enforces plenty of good security practices.

It lessens the risk of security by looking for vulnerabilities and by implementing the latest WordPress security practices and techniques. It uses a phenomenal security points grading system just so it measures how you have protected your based on the security features that you have used.

The security firewall rules are categorized into “basic”, “intermediate” and “advanced”. This way, you can apply the firewall rules without having to break your site’s functionality. Add that to the fact that All In One WordPress Security does not slow your site down and is 100 percent free.

5. Wordfence

Wordfence is a powerhouse of a security plugin is just what your WordPress site is looking for. Its web application firewall prevents your site from getting hacked as it is powered by Threat Defense Feed. It takes advantage of the proprietary feed, which alerts you immediately whenever your site gets hacked.

It includes a Live Traffic view that gives you a real-time hawk’s eye view of your online traffic as well as any hacking attempts that are made. It has over 22 million downloads and is 100 percent open-source as well as free. As long as you download from the WordPress directory, you should be fine.

It also features a Premium API key that grants you premium support, scheduled scans, country blocking, password auditing, real-time updates to the Threat Defense Feed, a two-factor authentication and also checks your IP address if it is being used to spam-vertised.

6. WPS Hide Login

WPS Hide Login is a simple plugin that comfortably lets you change the URL of the login form page to anything that you desire. However, it does not rename or change files in core, and neither does it add rewrite rules.

What it does it intercept page requests and it works on any WordPress site. As a result, users cannot access the wp-admin directory and wp-login.php page. So, you should be able to bookmark or remember the URL.

7. BulletProof Security

BulletProof Security is indeed a force to be reckoned with. It guards your site against SQL injections as well as other exploits. The plugin consists of a firewall that stops malicious script from executing before it goes for your WordPress core files. Its key features include: real-time file monitor auto-restore intrusion detection & prevention system, quarantine intrusion detection & prevention system, DB monitor intrusion detection system, JTC anti-spam | anti-hacker, uploads folder anti-exploit guard, security logging, HTTP error logging, PHP error logging.

8. Security Ninja

Security Ninja gives you the ability to go into hiding whenever bots, hackers or spammers come knocking at your door. It grants you virtually full control over what security features you would implement on your site. Its biggest trait is conducting over 50 security tests with a single click.

It is sad though that the free version does not include a malware scanner. But that can be rectified by purchasing the premium version of this plugin. When that’s done, you will also get a WordPress core file scanner and an event logger, as well as gain the ability to schedule your scans.

9. WP Hide & Security Enhancer

WP Hide & Security Enhancer is the easiest way for you to hide your WordPress core files, theme and plugin paths from being visible on the front end of your site. This vastly improves upon Site Security and no one will ever realize that you’re running a WordPress.

It provides a great way to clean up HTML by removing all of your WordPress fingerprints. You can change the default WordPress login URLs from wp-admin and wp-login.php to something completely random.

To Conclude

That about wraps up all of the best WordPress security plugins that are a shoo-in to give you a peaceful online experience and absolute privacy. If you feel the need to mention more for this list, don’t hesitate to let me know in the comments below.

[“Source-techspective”]

8 Ways to Monetize Your Blog and Make Money Online

8 Ways to Monetize Your Blog and Make Money Online

When you’re just starting out with your blog, it can seem like one of the most arduous and frustrating tasks. With so much information to consume and strategies to digest, how is that any one person can find the time or the wherewithal to not only grasp the art of blogging itself, but also that of driving significant amounts of traffic?

We all know blogging isn’t some altruistic pursuit. People want their words to be seen and shared. They want to gain the respect of the masses and boost their authority in their respective industry or niche. However, clearly it isn’t quite that simple. Not only is it difficult to drive traffic to a blog, but it’s also hard to monetize the traffic that you do receive.

The problem? Most people ignore the fundamentals of online marketing when attempting to earn any semblance of an income from their blogs. When you fail to pay homage to these fundamentals, you’ll find it excruciatingly difficult to earn anything. But if you go about it the right way, you’ll certainly profit in the long run.

Related: 10 Business Ideas to Make Easy Money and Change the World

5 immutable laws of blogging.

Before I jump into the various ways you can actually monetize a blog, whether you just started that blog or you’ve had it for some time now, I wanted to cover the five immutable laws of blogging. If you pay attention to these laws, you’ll succeed over time. Ignore them, and you’ll find it nearly impossible to drive any respectable amount of traffic and ultimately monetize your blog.

1. Focus

Blogs need focus. You need to have a specific industry, niche or topic that you write about repeatedly. Try not to go all over the map. You’ll find that veering off on tangents will make you lose your core audience. People want to visit a blog — and keep revisiting it — because it fills a need or a void. That happens by staying focused and on-topic.

2. Quality

People think that blogging is about pushing out an enormous amount of content. But it doesn’t work if it’s thin content. Your content needs to be quality content. It needs to be thorough, well-written and cite its sources. If a study is referenced, it needs to be linked to. Don’t skimp on quality if you’re serious about monetizing your blog.

3. Value

Your blog needs to deliver value. What can you teach other people about? What are you an expert at? Take the time to deliver value. Create thorough tutorials and informative posts that interweave things like videos and other media to truly help people understand or figure something out. Value is a precursor to income in any industry, but especially in blogging.

4. Engagement

How engaging is your content? Does your blog incite people to spend a lot of time reading articles, watching videos or messaging on a forum, for example? The more people engage with your content, the more likely they’ll be to purchase something from you. Without engagement, there’s very little chance of monetization.

5. Authority

How much authority do you have? How well-known are you in your field? The more authority you have, the more likely you can monetize your blog quickly. For example, if you have a large social media following and you decide to launch a blog, you can drive traffic quickly. If you’re an expert at something else or a best-selling author, for example, you already have authority, all you need to do is leverage it.

Related: Why a Blog Gets You Further than an MBA

Monetizing your blog.

While there are arguably dozens of ways to monetize your blog, there really are eight core methods that will help you earn a healthy income from your efforts.

1. Affiliate marketing

One of the most popular methods for monetizing a blog is to leverage affiliate marketing. This is especially useful when you’re just starting out and you don’t have your own products or services to sell. All you have to do is develop content that will ultimately be in harmony with whatever affiliate offers you plan to push out.

For example, if you’re running a fitness blog, you can easily sell affiliate health, weight loss or body building supplements. Since the content is already attracting people that are interested in fitness, selling these types of products helps you to create a near-automated stream of passive income.

2. Advertisements

While most people might think that adding some pay-per-click (PPC) ads will be a great way to make lots of money with their blogs, unless you have massive amounts of traffic — as in 10,000+ visitors per day or more — the income will be marginal at best. The real income here doesn’t start until you cross about 100,000 visitors per day.

However, you could easily negotiate terms directly with advertisers by utilizing display ads as opposed to PPC ads. As long as the ads are within your specific niche or industry, you can likely negotiate an amount that would be much more competitive than income from standard PPC ads.

3. Email marketing

One of the most powerful methods for making money from your blog is directly through email marketing. But to be successful, you need to build your list. Whether you promote blog updates or create a lead magnet, utilize one of the more popular email marketing platforms like ConvertKit, Aweber or InfusionSoft to implement the systems necessary to begin marketing via email.

By building a strong bond and a connection with your readers, you can effectively generate a sizable amount of money through the course of marketing both your own products and services along with affiliate offers directly through email. You can expect to generate approximately $1 per subscriber per month.

4. Sell ebooks

Ebooks offer a relatively quick pathway for making money from your blog. Develop an ebook that’s aligned with the content of your blog. Non-fiction ebooks are relatively simple to create, and if you’re teaching a skill that many people struggle with, it’s likely that the ebook will produce a healthy profit.

You can easily promote your ebook directly through your blog by creating attractive content that will draw people in, then enticing them with your ebook. You could also build a sales funnel, which is an online marketing term for an automated multi-step sales machine, and sell your ebook on autopilot.

5. Sell courses

Selling digital online courses is another way you can profit from blogging. Develop intuitive and helpful courses that add a tremendous amount of value and the rest will be smooth sailing. By putting your heart and your soul into these courses, you can simply allow them to sell on autopilot for you, another great avenue for passive income.

Courses work great when it comes to technical skills like web development, digital marketing, graphic design and so on. But they also work in formats like finances, stocks, currency investing and accounting. Find what you’re really great at and do the due diligence before building your course. Thenm make something far better than the other courses out there in the marketplace.

6. Sell digital products

Creating digital products is a great way to profit from your blog. You can effectively sell any type of digital information product on your blog as long as it’s in harmony with your content. You can build a webinar to market your product and deliver them through a member’s area or through other downloadable means.

Digital products can be a combination of videos, downloadable guides, resources, PDFs, software components, SaaS and others. Do your best to create something that helps fill a need or a void. Don’t second guess yourself, as you’d be surprised at just how much money you can make by selling digital products on your blog.

Related: How to Produce Juicy Content That Catches Eyeballs

7. Sell coaching services

While it does seem like coaching services are infiltrating every aspect of the market these days, selling coaching services through your blog can definitely be a lucrative prospect. Whether you set yourself up as a life coach, a career coach or a business development coach, you can earn a significant income through just a handful of clients.

Decide on a number of packages, and do your best to ensure that you address any objections upfront. Customers tend to abandon the purchase process when it’s too complicated, they have to leave the site, create an account or a number of other reasons according to one such study by Baymard Institute.

8. Secure sponsorships

Sponsorships are a great way to make money from your blog, but you need the traffic if you’re going to sell it for a significant amount of money. You can create sponsored posts as long as you label them as sponsored. The FTC cracks down on marketing products and services, including articles that are sponsored when in fact they’re passed off as organic.

You have to be careful with sponsorships. Be sure that you’re upfront with your readership. Google also cares acutely about sponsored links and will penalize you if you’re selling links along with penalizing the site that you’re linking to. Simply put, it’s not worth it, so be as transparent as possible.

[“Source-entrepreneur”]