Top ArticlesManageWP.orgHow quality WordPress hosting improves your agency’s profit margins (and helps you sleep)<img src=""><br />Imagine this: It&rsquo;s late on Sunday night, and you&rsquo;re relaxing on the couch with a loved one. Your phone rings and it&rsquo;s that big client you scored a couple months back. Reluctantly, you take the call and it&rsquo;s obvious they&rsquo;re upset &mdash; they want to know why their site is down. What keeps you up at night? For a lot of agency owners, it&rsquo;s that ever-present anxiety that comes with managing client sites, and having to drop everything at a moment&rsquo;s notice when a client calls, often at the worst possible times. It&rsquo;s knowing that your client sites are vulnerable, and it&rsquo;s that nagging worry in the back of your mind that your backups might not be working. As the founder of Convesio, I know this anxiety all too well. A few years back, I needed to find hosting for my client sites that was redundant, managed backups, and could scale without costing a kidney &mdash; but couldn&rsquo;t find any that could make sure client sites wouldn&rsquo;t go down. So I set out to build it myself. What I found was only a couple of providers, but they were way too expensive to put any small to medium business on at $400 a month for one site! The majority ofTemplateMonster: David Braun's Marketing and Affiliate Success Story<img src=""><br />Today I&rsquo;m interviewing David Braun, the CEO &amp; co-founder at TemplateMonster: one of the leading marketplaces in the WordPress products ecosystem. If you have ever considered starting a marketplace for WordPress themes and plugins, or you are just curious to learn about some of the challenges in running a successful marketplace business &ndash; I have a feeling you are going to enjoy this one very much. We are going to dive deep into the strategic and tactical aspects of launching, running, and scaling a digital marketplace. Hey David, thank you so much for doing this interview. A little confession before we start: marketplace dynamics and network effects are two of my favorite topics, so I have like a million questions to pick your brains withGeoDirectory V2 - Design Customization<img src=""><br />GeoDirectory V2 and all its add-ons are finally out of BETA. If you haven&rsquo;t heard about it yet, GeoDirectory V2 is the first major rebuild of GeoDirectory code base since 2014. It&rsquo;s not just an update, it&rsquo;s a brand new software. More powerful, more flexible and ready for other 5 years of powering great directories for our customers. Today it can be found here: GeoDirectory V2 We are working on few final details, like the redesign of this website, before launching it publicly on the plugin repository. One of the reason why we are postponing this a bit longer, is to try to reach as many users of V1 as possible before the update comes out. Even though updating from V1 to V2 is fairly simple, it requires few extra step compared to the typical GeoDirectory update. (*** Docs about conversion from V1 to V2 here ***) Just clicking the update button isn&rsquo;t enough. Your website won&rsquo;t show any listings and the design will need to be adjusted a bit. We want to prevent as many surprised angry users as possible. We&rsquo;ll do this with a series of blog posts, videos, newsletter, with social media updates and through our forums. We hope to reach them all,How HeyTaco! Has Improved Our Company Culture in a Remote World<img src=""><br />Creating a great company culture takes work. Creating a great remote company culture takes creativity. How do you engage in small talk with your co-workers without the proverbial water cooler? How do you celebrate success, commiserate over struggles, enjoy birthdays, anniversaries or holidays without a company outing or celebration in the break room? How do you make work more than just a computer you log into and get your tasks completed? It&rsquo;s not easy! But at WebDevStudios (WDS), we found a way to make it work by relying on HeyTaco! to improve our company culture. Early on, we realized that creating a great company culture starts with great communication. We have found that Slack is a great platform for executing communication in an intuitive way and lines up well with all our company&rsquo;s needs. Part of what makes Slack great is the ability to integrate with third-party apps to really make Slack your own, such as the awesome app HeyTaco! At its most basic level, HeyTaco! is a team-executed reward system. Just invite HeyTaco! into your Slack channels and you are ready to go. Everyone has five tacos to give out per day. To give out your tacos, simply post a nice message, includeBuilding a WordPress Theme: Things to Consider in 2019 (And Beyond)<img src=""><br />WebDevStudios (WDS) is working to improve our theme framework wd_s based on Automattic&rsquo;s _s; although at this point, it&rsquo;s resemblance is only vaguely similar. WDS is dedicated to keeping up to date with the web development industry and making educated decisions about which new things to pursue and which to ignore (for now). In my private time, I&rsquo;ve been building a starter theme from scratch to better educate myself about what is required by WordPress to build a theme-repo-approved theme but also to make my own informed decisions based on what others are doing, how people typically use the internet, and what of WordPress core feels antiquated. I started writing this blog post to try and build a custom theme from scratch, but that proved too problematic for a few reasons. The time commitment wasn&rsquo;t small. Any theme I built would require more than just one blog post and there&rsquo;s a world of information out there to help you on your way already. Also, before any opinionated decisions had been made, the outcome was essentially any other theme out there already. The biggest reasons I thought I&rsquo;d circle back and rethink this post was because a lot of thoseHow to Create a Multi Language WordPress Site<img src=""><br />Expanding internationally is the natural next step for businesses that have achieved local success. But how do you provide content to consumers in other languages? With a WordPress multi language website, you can translate your web pages into multiple languages with ease &mdash; and that&rsquo;s where this guide comes in. Learn everything you need to know about WordPress language translation and start tapping into overseas markets. Creating a WordPress multi language website makes sense. When you look at the numbers, the web caters overwhelmingly &mdash; and disproportionately &mdash; to English speakers. English is ranked the third most popular spoken language in the world with 360 million native speakers. But it claims the top spot amongst the most commonly spoken languages online, with 873 million internet users. And then there&rsquo;s the fact 53.3% of online content is written in English. The fact is, the number of English speakers pales in comparison to the number of Mandarin speakers (955 million) and Spanish speakers (405 million). Imagine opening a web page and seeing Chinese characters. If you don&rsquo;t know Mandarin, you&rsquo;d quickly leave the site, right? And you sureHow Page Builders Can Help Your Team Create Better Websites<img src=""><br />WordPress Page Builders have a controversial history. Early visual design tools for WordPress were clunky and, behind the scenes, outputted code that was slow-loading and poor in quality. Not only that, Page Builders were often bundled together with WordPress themes, which made it very difficult to change themes or reuse any of a page&rsquo;s copy and imagery without rebuilding. It&rsquo;s no surprise that many developers and WordPress veterans avoided Page Builders and opted to hand-code pages using HTML and CSS. These days, things are very different. Page Builders have matured and instead of slowing down content creation workflows, they speed them up and enable more people to be involved in the website building process. This might sound like a &ldquo;too many cooks in the kitchen&rdquo; situation, but as companies and teams grow, individuals that make up those teams tend to specialize. With a visual design tool, like a Page Builder, your copywriter can work on writing while a designer imagines the aesthetics, branding, and visual direction. A marketing team can A/B test and optimize funnels while a translation team works on localization. Anyone that&rsquo;s involved with the websiteElementor Free Vs Elementor Pro: Which One to go for?<img src=""><br />With so many features and functionalities, choosing between Elementor and Elementor Pro can be trivial. Elementor&rsquo;s free version comes with great design options and features and in addition to that, Elementor Pro takes those designing options to a whole another level and can be of great use to make professional websites. Both have excellent customization possibilities but which one to go for can still make you scratch your head in confusion. In this article, we will learn about the features and functionalities of both of them. Let&rsquo;s have a good look at both of them and dig into their functionalities and what do they have to offer. Elementor Lite Version The Elementor lite version is the free one and can be downloaded directly from Don&rsquo;t go by the notion that it is free so it might not be able to do a lot. With this plugin, you can single-handedly create a fully functioning website and that too without touching a single line of code. Let&rsquo;s jump in and see what does the free version has to offer. Templates Library The free version of Elementor comes with a pretty good template library which you can use to build web pages easily. The library comprises3 Questions to Ask Your Project Manager<img src=""><br />Who is your main point of contact for your website development project? If you guessed the Project Manager, you are correct! Once your project is ready to kick off, you will be introduced to your project team, which includes a dedicated Project Manager. The Project Manager will be communicating introductions, status updates, deliverables, requirements, and more. Communication is very important during a website project. The ultimate goal is for the Project Manager is to ensure the client is fully aware of the project life cycle, timeline and status. The Project Manager will be asking various questions throughout the project discovery, development, QA and launch phase, but there are three key questions that you should always ask your Project Manager. &ldquo;How will we be communicating throughout the project?&rdquo; Typically, a Project Manager will plan how communications will take place between the project team and client well in advance of the project kick-off. Whether it&rsquo;s via email, Slack, or a weekly status call, there is a primary way communication is delivered. At the initial kick-off call, you should ask the Project Manager to provide information on how communications willModern Ways To Reach New Relevant Audiences For Your WordPress Product<img src=""><br />Any WordPress plugin or theme without engaged and relevant audiences of users will have a very hard time justifying the resources that are being put into developing &amp; maintaining it. In this article, I&rsquo;m going to focus on several innovative ways which will enable you to reach new audiences for your WordPress product business. These ways do not include the common &amp; widely familiar ones like SEO, content marketing, old-fashioned social media marketing, etc. Instead, the focus here will be set on presenting you with paths you probably have not encountered before in the WordPress business sphere! &ldquo;Stealing&rdquo; Your Competitors&rsquo; Customer Data I obviously realize how potentially problematic this section&rsquo;s subheader may appear, but let me reassure you by saying that the idea &amp; method described here are perfectly legal and morally sound, just as long as you follow the information provided and not take it in some other, less decent directions. Let&rsquo;s get to it: 1 &ndash; Broad Audience Targeting As a seller of WordPress plugins and themes you may or may not have heard of a thing called &ldquo;Dynamic Product Ads&rdquo; by Facebook. If you haven&rsquo;t2018 Year in Review - Pippins Plugins<img src=""><br />Since 2012, I have written a year-in-review post to detail and share highlights and challenges of the previous year. So as is tradition, here is my review of 2018. In all, 2018 was an incredibly successful year for me and my company, Sandhills Development. We had some great achievements that expanded the team, grew our revenue and profit, acquired a new product, sold two plugin products, branched out into a new market and industry, and matured as a company. We also, however, had some significant challenges that were perhaps some of the hardest yet. I&rsquo;d like to share some details about each. When Sandhills Development first started, I had no intention of having a large team and was very reluctant to ever grow the company to more than 5-8 people. Through the growth of our products, however, it has been necessary to increase the size of our team to fill ever-growing resource needs. At first I was leery to allow the team to expand beyond what I felt I could directly manage but overtime I welcomed the challenges that are involved with doing so. Today we are at 19 full time employees and one part time / variable time contractor on the software side of the business, and two full timeYoastCon Overshadowed by Twitter Storm: Joost de Valk, SEO Industry Leaders Called Out for Objectifying Women<img src=""><br />The third edition of YoastCon kicked off today in Nijmegen, the Netherlands, but for those following remotely the conference has been overshadowed by a discussion that erupted on the #yoastcon hashtag prior to the event. Several parties began circulating tweets and unsavory videos involving Joost de Valk, for which he has since publicly apologized. The story was complicated and confusing to follow, as many of these decade-old tweets were deleted and the videos made private by the websites that are hosting them. The parties who were publishing screenshots from alleged that de Valk was sexually harassing women in the SEO industry. @yoast can scrub @jdevalk history of thirsty sexual harassment tweets but The Wayback Machine knows all. If it's not harassment why was it deleted yesterday? #YoastCon &mdash; Dan Leibson (@DanLeibson) February 6, 2019 Looks like somebody whose name rhymes with toast has been busy deleting tweets ahead of #YoastCon &hellip; wonder if any of them are in &mdash; David Cohen (@explorionary) February 6, 2019 No seriously, fucking don&rsquo;t try and excuse behaviour like this.Quick Tip: WordPress "get" and "the" template functions<img src=""><br />If you&rsquo;re learning how WordPress templates work, there are two kinds of functions you&rsquo;ll see a lot. What I like to call, the &ldquo;get&rdquo; and &ldquo;the&rdquo; template functions. If you haven&rsquo;t noticed by now, there are functions in WordPress that seemingly do the same thing, so what is the difference? When do you use either one? Here are some examples: &ldquo;Get&rdquo; function &ldquo;The&rdquo; function I learned PHP through WordPress first, before I went on to solidify my PHP knowledge outside of it. If you&rsquo;re in the same boat that I was, even if you&rsquo;re not a beginner in other languages like HTML and Css, here is how I learned these functions. &ldquo;Get&rdquo; Functions The &ldquo;get&rdquo; functions will fetch the data I want, but the data will not display on the front-end by default. If I drop one of these functions, say &ldquo;get_the_title&rdquo; inside of a WordPress loop, I will not see the title on the front-end. For those who don&rsquo;t know what I mean by front-end, I mean you won&rsquo;t see it on your website. Which is confusing, right? At first, I was like, &ldquo;Hey, I&rsquo;m in the loop, and it&rsquo;s supposed to get the title,Kinsta Kingpin: Interview with Robert Abela<img src=""><br />Robert Abela is the CEO and founder of WP White Security, a European based company which develops WordPress security plugins. They also blog about all things related to WordPress security. You can find Robert on Twitter and LinkedIn. This is our recent interview with him, as part of our Kinsta Kingpin series. Q1: What is your background, &amp; how did you first get involved with WordPress? In 2013 I was a product manager at a security software company, and we needed a blog for our website to share our research findings. After reviewing a few solutions, we chose WordPress. As a security software company, we were also interested in the security side of WordPress and were quite surprised by how much of an easy target WordPress was back then. We had developed an online security service for WordPress ourselves, but it never really took off. When we started using WordPress, I also started following the WordPress community and was surprised by the number of people making a living from WordPress. I decided to go solo and start offering WordPress security services &ndash; I started cleaning hacked websites and doing security hardening. While freelancing I needed an activity log solution for10 Effective Tips to Increase Your Multilingual Site Speed in WordPress<img src=""><br />Knowing how to increase your multilingual site speed is an important skill. Page loading speed is an often underestimated factor for the success of a website. However, it influences many key factors, like: traffic, bounce rate, conversions, user satisfaction, as well as SEO. This detailed guide will cover everything you need to know about how to make your multilingual WordPress site faster. We will go over why loading speed is so important, how to test the current state of your site and what measures you can take to increase your multilingual site speed. Lack of Speed is a Killer Many people are unaware that in page loading, literally every second counts. Here is why. Attention is a Rare Good The reason why speed is so important is because it matters to users: 47% of consumers expect a web page to load in two seconds or less 40% abandon a site that takes longer than three seconds to load 79% of shoppers are less likely to return to a website if they are dissatisfied with its performance (even if it&rsquo;s in their own language) One second delay reduces conversions by 7%, page views by 11% and customer satisfaction by 16% As you can see, saying that every second counts is not an exaggeration.2018 in Review and How Gutenberg Will Change Page Building - Transparency Report #47<img src=""><br />Welcome to the 47th edition of the monthly transparency report (for December 2018). In this series, I go through what&rsquo;s happening in the business and discuss our projects, plans, wins and struggles. Click here to see the previous reports. With the new year well under way, it&rsquo;s perhaps a good moment to look back at 2018 and evaluate the progress we made, the challenges we faced, all the good and bad things, and also discuss what we&rsquo;re planning to accomplish in 2019. Let&rsquo;s get right to it:Should You Incentivize User Feedback For Your WordPress Plugin/Theme?<img src=""><br />All WordPress plugin/theme sellers who sell their WordPress products through Freemius are added to a Freemius DEV Slack channel, where discussions about WordPress business best practices, as well as consultation sessions, take place on a daily basis. Just a few days ago, the creator of &lsquo;WP Sheet Editor&rsquo; (and a few other great WordPress plugins), Jose Vega, came out seeking for some advice on whether or not he should ask for user feedback about his products. His plan was to incentivize them to provide their ideas of how their experience might be improved by offering free plugin licenses to users who come up with the best suggestions. We decided it was worth expanding on this topic, in the hopes of helping all WordPress plugin/theme owners understand the benefits and drawbacks, as well as how to best manage this kind of strategic move. Here&rsquo;s Jose Vega&rsquo;s original message from the Slack channel: &ldquo;Hi guys, I have an idea. I want to implement an &lsquo;innovators program&rsquo; in my plugins. I will send an automated email to the customers, asking them to give me feedback (5 ideas) on how to improve the plugin (improve the UI, workflows, extension ideas, newElementor Acquires Layers WP<img src=""><br />Today, I&rsquo;m excited to announce that Elementor has acquired Layers WP, a popular WordPress theme company. For those of you who are not aware, Layers is a WordPress theme brand, launched in 2014 by WordPress veterans, David and Marc Perel. With some beautiful themes, Layers saw much success over the years, partnering with Envato and other major players in the market. Back in 2015, Layers won #2 on Product Hunt and attracted a lot of attention. Over the years Layers accumulated over 375,000 downloads worldwide. With the change of the tide in the WordPress ecosystem and the fast-paced shift towards all-in-one solutions in its market, David and Marc approached us with a proposal. We met in London, and were impressed by the enthusiasm and approach of these two creative entrepreneurs. Both of us found common ground in our approach and vision, and decided to explore the option of an acquisition. Layers were looking to hand over the project to the right company. They wanted to find a complimentary product for their themes, a product that offered an intuitive and easy to use solution for designing a WordPress website. Their selling point was that Elementor could stand to benefit from theUsing the WordPress Classic Editor on New Websites<img src=""><br />As software evolves, we can find ourselves having to adapt to new ways of doing things. There&rsquo;s a learning curve involved that, while frustrating at first, becomes second nature once we have put in the requisite practice. WordPress, however, has provided us with a choice. We can adapt to the new Gutenberg block editor, or we can stick with the tried-and-true Classic editor. Generally speaking, &ldquo;legacy&rdquo; solutions such as the Classic editor are often phased out rather quickly. Software developers tend to leave the old feature around just long enough for serious users to adapt and clean up any loose ends on existing projects. After that, it&rsquo;s gone for good. In the case of web design and development, that trend often means that we can squeeze some extra life out of a feature for our existing sites, while using the latest solution for new projects. But the Classic editor may be a different ball of wax. Continuing Support As you might have noticed, the road to get Gutenberg released with WordPress 5.0 was a bumpy one. There were a lot of ups and downs. Worst of all, an air of uncertainty left web professionals without a clear sense of how to approach both new and existingExtending WP_Query with Custom Queries and Tables<img src=""><br />Retrieveing data using get_posts or WP_Query can be challenging when we need to include custom tables in the query. In this tutorial, we will learn how to include our custom tables to create custom queries. The idea for this tutorial came while working on my plugin Simple Sponsorships. I had to retrieve sponsors by packages and also by the content they sponsor. This plugin has a custom wrapper function ss_get_sponsors( $args = array() ) which basically passes the arguments to the get_posts function. I could have built new functions but I wanted for me and other developers to have an easier API so I decided to stick only with one function. Here are two challenges: How to get sponsors by a package when the packages are saved in a custom table, How to get sponsors by the content they sponsor which is also saved in the wp_posts table. The first challenge should be quite easy to handle since there is a third table sponsorships which has two columns sponsor and package and contains IDs of both. So I had to join this table with the wp_posts table to get the data. The second challenge was a bit tricky. The content that is sponsored by the Sponsor, has its meta table updated with the meta_keyCreating Custom Post Types Layouts in Divi & Interlinking Them with CPT-onomies<img src=""><br />We recently had the law firm of Hepworth Holzer become a WordXpress member. Their site looked and worked great for visitors and SEO. Unfortunately it was a bit of a pain to update content, especially if we wanted to add a new block of content to a page or something. It required first creating a new block for that content in Advanced Custom Fields (ACF) plugin. Then going in and modifying the custom-built-theme&rsquo;s code to display that new block of content. We recognize that a lot of developers set things up like this, and it&rsquo;s a great system. We manage a number of WordPress sites that are setup this way. However, it can be difficult for someone else who&rsquo;s taking over the site, to find and figure out where to add the new code, etc. Adding a new block of content and getting it to look nice can take hours if the theme isn&rsquo;t well setup or isn&rsquo;t commented well. In contrast, with a theme or plugin that uses a visual or block-based editor like Divi or Elementor, that same content addition might only take 5 or 10 minutes. Part 1 &ndash; The Why, What, and How of CPT&rsquo;s First, let&rsquo;s look at why, what, and how of Custom Post Types. This will establish theHow to Start a Career In Blogging? (And Be Successful)<img src=""><br />Blogging is one of the most sought after and most admired career option in today&rsquo;s era. Everyone wants to live free and without any dependency on any single redundant source of income such as a job. A super independent blogger&rsquo;s lifestyle with loads of money inflow is everyone&rsquo;s dream. So, the question arises in most of our minds, how can you achieve this dream? Well, one thing I would tell you is that it is no easy task to make a living as a professional blogger. But again, which job is easy nowadays? No matter the field, you need to work really hard to make it to the best of the lot and become an icon in that field. You must have seen examples of blogs and bloggers claiming that how lavish life they are living while making a fancy 6 figure income out of their blogging career. Or posts and articles how you can start earning insane or crazy income with blogging and they always follow an &ldquo;ultimate guide&rdquo; to blogging. If you have come across to posts like this, let me tell you no matter how much they claim to be super easy and awesome, it is never that easy. Period. If it would have been that easy, why stats are showing that only 4% of the bloggers are makingWebsite Branding Basics<img src=""><br />Your website is a direct representation of your company&rsquo;s brand. That is why it is crucial that your website is consistent, clear, and does a good job of representing that brand across all platforms and on the website itself. It can be quite easy to stray away from your brand with all of the new functionality or customization of websites these days, but it&rsquo;s important to make sure that every part of your website, content, and social media all play with the same set of branding guidelines to ensure your user base receives the same level of quality across the web. Your goal should be to ensure that your website is built clearly to reflect your brand. The Basics Every company should have a style guide. If you don&rsquo;t, get on that. Within your company, you need to regulate your brand&rsquo;s outward appearance, but you should also set the guidelines for external companies to use your brand properly. Even more importantly, you need to have a style guide for incoming and existing users and customers alike. Brand recognition is what drives sales and spreads your content around the web and material world. All brand guidelines should include, at a very basic level, your brandDev Shortie: A Better Process for Styling Websites<img src=""><br />One thing I&rsquo;ve noticed a lot lately with websites is that no matter how it looks, the style sheet is full of redundant, duplicate, or unnecessary styles. A lot of that, I imagine, comes from updates after a website goes live, where engineers that weren&rsquo;t initially involved in its development are coming in blind. Another part of that might revolve around planning or distribution of tasks for a website&rsquo;s construction. Truth be told, there are probably dozens of reasons that the styles may not be as organized or clean as they could be. We can&rsquo;t see the future and we can&rsquo;t always be in constant communication with one another, but I&rsquo;ve learned a thing or two over the last decade that I think might help keep things clean, organized, reusable, and readable. Before We Start A few setup notes here: I write my styles with SCSS. This is my preference. There are many other options out there&mdash;Less or Sass to name a couple&mdash;which will work in more or less the same way. I also typically use webpack or Gulp on older projects to compile and minify, auto-prefix, and concatenate my style sheets. Organization and Breakdown The organization is really up to the