After many years on WP it looks like the "Next Smashing Magazine" will be run by a different platform, actually a mix of different platforms!
Check out this behind the scenes look at some of the decisions and lessons learned from the first attempt at launching a premium WordPress plugin.
The affiliate marketing space is booming, and has grown into a very important and effective channel for driving sales. Thanks in a big part to WordPress, many internet marketers are now working from home and making a living from their websites. It is typical for a consumer nowadays to lookup reviews online when they are contemplating a new purchasing. And while this might be seen as a good or bad, internet marketers are right there, waiting to capitalize on this traffic. Besides working full-time here at Kinsta, I also develop and support a premium WordPress coupon plugin, specifically targeted towards affiliate marketers. Today I am going to take you on a little behind the scenes look at how it came about and some of the challenges faced when launching a plugin for the first time. Affiliate Marketing Growth
According to a 2016 Rakuten Affiliate Network study, the US affiliate marketing spend will increase at a compound annual growth rate of 10.1% percent between 2015 and 2020, to an estimated $6.8 billion industry. And to put this into perspective, in 2016 the New York Time’s print advertising fell 16%. As the world wide web continues to grow, a lot of advertising is now shifting
Great little post by Kevin on a reminder to pay attention to your WordPress database. Without knowing it, his DB grew to 19.5GB due to one plugin.
In general, I am quite good at maintaining my WordPress websites. I use the fantastic update service WP Remote to ensure all plugins and themes are kept up to date and I regularly remove plugins that I am not using. However, I am only human.
From time to time some things do slip through the net and I don’t realise I have missed anything until much later.
When I started getting automatic disk warning emails from my server telling me that this blog was using most of its allocated block, I knew something was wrong.
The Investigation Begins
I began looking into where the storage was being used up and saw that phpMyAdmin was reporting that this blog’s database is 19.5GB in size. When I sorted the database by row size I started to get a better picture of what was happening.
The top four rows all had profiler in the name. The profiler_functions table was taking up 9.3GB, profiler_queries was taking up 8.8GB, profiler_requests was taking up 607.6MB, and profiler_plugins was taking up 583.8MB.
To put into perspective how large these tables are, you need to look at the next tables. The next largest table is the prli_clicks table created by the link tracker Pretty Links Lite. After
When it comes to Education, many in the WP community don't hear about how WordPress makes an impact or what it TAKES to make an impact.
I’ve noticed the topic of WordPress in Education recently in my Twitter feed. @Jeffr0 over on WP Tavern was recently polling his followers for info on the type of CMS (Content Management Systems) used by schools, along with the cost to run such platforms. Here at Hamilton Wentworth District School Board, we are big WordPress users. Our main website is a WordPress site (http://www.hwdsb.on.ca). We run over 100 individual school websites on a WordPress Multisite Network, and back in May of 2011, we launched the HWDSB Commons: a second Multisite Network which now hosts over 8000 blogs for over 30 000 users. There is a saying in the WordPress community, that WordPress is Free as in Freedom, not Free as in Beer. Beer may not the best example given the audience that may stumble upon this post in the feed (oh Puritan Canadian, you worry too much); free as is Costco samples would work as well, although it won’t look as good on a T Shirt). I don’t think I understood that concept when we first began this journey, because when you are first starting out, beyond the hosting fee, we found everything we needed in the free Plugin Repository hosted on WordPress.org. (In this instance
A look at the Twenty Seventeen default WordPress theme - it's pretty good actually!
From the point of view of someone who doesn’t generally use free themes, Twenty...
Got lots of sites? No problem. Learn more about WordPress Multisite and how you can utilize it to turn your single WordPress website into a network of independent sites.
WordPress Multisite is a collection of independent websites sharing the same WordPress installation. The sites in the network are virtual sites, meaning that they do not have their own directory on the server, although they do have separate directories for media uploads and separate tables in the database. In this post I will introduce you to WordPress Multisite. It will be a basic user guide aiming to point out the pros and cons of Multisite vs single site installations, and to show you how to turn a single WordPress site into a Multisite network.
First, I will try to give you an idea of the many reasons you may have to install a network, and conversely of the many factors that could prevent you from installing a Multisite. Following, I will provide an overview of the available types of networks, I will describe the main characteristics of each type, and the system requirements that could force you to choose a type instead of another. Finally, we will dive deep into the installation process, and I will show you how straightforward it is migrating from a single WordPress installation to a Network of sites.
Notice: chances are that, after reading this post, you will switch from your
Google PageSpeed Insights scores should be taken with a grain of salt. They are helpful as guidelines for optimization, but sometimes simply choosing faster WordPress hosting can be more important.
You want your WordPress site to load lightning-fast. And if you’re like most of us, when you think of improving your site’s page load times to get that “lightning-fast” designation, you think of your Google PageSpeed Insights score. For many website owners, it’s their white whale. Getting a perfect score on PageSpeed Insights is the impossible quest that will magically solve all of their page speed woes.
But is a high PageSpeed Insights score the be-all and end-all of fast page load times? Sorry, but no. If your focus is on improving your site’s page load times, finding a better host will often take you further.
In this post, I’m going to run a real test to show you that high-performance hosting will do more for your page load times than endlessly striving to improve your PageSpeed Insights score.
What is Google PageSpeed Insights? Should you care?
If you’re not already familiar, PageSpeed Insights is a Google-offered tool that helps you both analyze and optimize your website’s performance for desktop and mobile visitors. Before I get into what exactly that entails, let’s talk about what PageSpeed Insights is not:
An editorial look at Matts structure for the next generation of WordPress.
photo credit: Angelina Litvin WordPress core development is kicking off in 2017 with the new focus-based development process that Matt Mullenweg announced during the 2016 State of the Word. The new approach to releases shifts WordPress from the familiar time-based release cycle to one that is more project-based. The idea is that design and user testing will lead the way and upcoming releases will ship when significant user-facing improvements are ready.
Mullenweg, who will serve as the overall product lead for 2017, announced tech and design leads for each of the three focus areas: the REST API, the editor, and the customizer.
“For the REST API we’re going to work on getting first party wp-admin usage of the new endpoints, and hopefully replace all of the core places where we still use admin-ajax,” Mullenweg said. The REST API team nominated Ryan McCue and K.Adam White to take the lead on the objectives Mullenweg outlined, as well as infrastructure and endpoint performance, security, and improvements to authentication options and documentation.
“The editor will endeavor to create a new page and post building experience that makes writing rich posts effortless,
2016 has been a phenomenal year! I wrote about the business, stability, My Open Source Contributions, the products I built, interviews, fitness, the big news, and my future plans. Read here → https://AhmdA.ws/ME_2016
Tonight’s the new year’s night, and I plan to write about everything that happened in 2016 (boy it was a hell of a year — BTW I ended up completing this article on 10th Jan! ). If you are new here, you must know that I wrote about last year in My Commitment to WordPress and Epic Moments of 2015. I have so much to talk about. And I have an incredible news to share with all of you at the end of this post. Anywho, let’s get to it.
Showoff! Yes, that’s precisely the word with which I wanted to start this article. And yes, I know what you are thinking. But hey, I have a story to tell. You see, I come from a diverse background. Tech is not as much common here as it is in the US. Even in global aspect of things, people do not generally understand software developers and especially what we do at work (— except for sitting in front of a screen all day and night long).
This was exactly the reason why I started looking for different online communities more than a decade ago. Ten years ago I found WordPress, I became a developer and started giving back to the community. This led me to be part of a great online family — the WordPress community.
I love what
Props to this person for not just stopping writing Theme/Plugin list posts but deleting all the old ones.
New Years Resolution #1 – No more theme / plugin list posts I’ve neglected the blog of late. I’ve been busy with other avenues and simply haven’t had the time to update WPin.me. It’s not until I revisited the blog did I realize just how many list posts of themes and plugins I actually had!
I referred back to a post entitled “Why List Posts Are Hurting Your Pocket.” Guess what? I took my own advice. I don’t want to be one of those sites, I guess it’s easy to write list posts for themes packed full of affiliate links rather than offering good quality content.
I don’t want to be like, Athemes, Colorlib, WPlift, WPExplorer and alike. Nothing against them you understand, I just don’t want to be anything like them in terms of list posts.
It goes against everything I want from WPin, it’s a ball ache to do and the only person it benefits is me, not you.
I deleted my WordPress theme & plugin list posts.
That’s why I deleted the lot of them, I don’t want them to hang around the website like unwelcome guest at a New Years Eve party, hence they are no more.
So no more theme / plugin list posts!
New Years Resolution
Shower thoughts from Tom McFarlin: when it comes to competition should we limit ourselves to a single player in publishing segment of the web?
This past weekend, I spent time closing a bunch of sites, exporting content from one service to another, preparing to consolidate a couple of sites, and even shutting some sites down. But the number one thing that has resulted in a weird bit of feedback is the idea that I opted to archive my data from Medium in preparing to move it to a WordPress-based site. This resulted in some weird WordPress versus Medium points from others.
Truthfully, I know this kind of argument will never die. But I digress for now.
And, I suppose, the reason this is weird is that I – like many who use WordPress – want the control that comes with owning your data. Perhaps it’s also about playing in someone else’s sandbox, too, right?
But there’s an inherent problem with sticking only with one CMS and neglecting what the rest of the industry is doing.
WordPress Versus Medium
I don’t know anyone who considers themselves a web developer and works with WordPress and doesn’t like the extensibility that the platform offers.
But take a step back and look at WordPress from 150,000 feet. This piece of software does a lot. And that’s great, right? Even the new [good-looking]
If you're a developer and/or contributor, take a few minutes out to read this. Nice quote: "User trust isn’t something you earn and then just get to keep forever. It’s a maintenance relationship."
Helen Hou-Sandi, in response to someone suggesting a large rewrite in slack wrote this: Your plan as I understand it disregards a couple of core WordPress philosophies/practices: striving for maintenance of backwards-compatibility, and that an X.0 release is no more significant than X.1 or Y.9 (this is closely related to maintaining back-compat, in that something like semantic versioning is less meaningful for WordPress core).
Generally, the most successful refactorings in core have been done in support of features being built, whether that’s a user- or dev-focused feature. It’s not that core code can’t be improved (clearly it can), it’s that better decisions regarding back-compat and, more importantly, forward-compat for an API or other bit of code can be made when one eye is on practical application.
As a user centric project, WordPress chooses philosophies that put the user first. There is also an unwritten philosophy point that many committers talk about which is that User Trust Matters. What that means to me is that users trust WordPress for running businesses, sharing content, and engaging with their own users. User trust must be maintained in order to
Interesting article and video about blogging and how it has changed over the last 5-10 years. Some are shifting focus to other mediums such as YouTube.
Over the last year or so I have slowly came to the conclusion that blogs are not as popular as they once were. It is something that I should have realised sooner. Blogging is dead.
It is no longer the same as it once was. Of course, everything evolves over time, however I believe that in most ways blogging has went backwards, not forwards.
I discuss this in great detail in the video below.
Before I go on, allow me get one thing straight. I love blogging and I am going to continue blogging
Great article summarizing how we'll think differently about Site Performance and Optimization once HTTP/2 is more broadly available.
A revolution is currently going on in the underpinnings of the web. HTTP, the protocol your browser uses to connect to your site, has a new version: HTTP/2. This is not something that should concern the average user, but for web developers, it changes how we do performance optimization entirely. In this short article, I want to explain what performance optimization best practices you can do away with, and why. What changed?
The most important thing you should know about the new HTTP/2 is that it no longer requires a new request for each file. This is the modification that makes our performance optimization guidelines change so drastically. In the HTTP1 / HTTP/1.1 world, it’d be faster to combine JS & CSS files and even images, so there would be fewer requests between browser and server. In the HTTP/2 world, this type of optimization is no longer needed and can even become counterproductive.
Can I use this already?
The answer is, fairly simply: yes. If your site is running on HTTPS, then all major current browsers support HTTP/2. You or your hosting company might have to change your server configuration to make sure it supports HTTP/2, but that’s it. Some older browsers
Don't get me wrong, I think there's a (big) place for page builders in the market, and I recommend them -- but end users need to be educated.
Page Builder plugins for WordPress have come a long way. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, you’re going to see more of them around the WordPress ecosystem. If WordPress is to continue it’s growth beyond our current 27% piece of the pie, the software will need to keep up with competing platforms like, Wix or Squarespace, which put page building at the forefront of their hosted solutions. When you match that up with great looking designs, it becomes a very empowering tool for anyone that is scared of touching code. In a world where we’re conditioned to fix our leaky faucet by searching YouTube first, before calling a professional, do-it-yourself on the web becomes just as appealing.
Page Builder plugins feed off of that same energy — it’s a double-edged sword.
On one side of the sword, we can’t blame users for wanting a builder tool since a.) WordPress doesn’t provide one and b.) designing a site on WordPress is still geared towards the more advanced user. Then there’s the other deadly side of the sword, to which, I’ve outlined 5 very sharp points — a strange sword for sure.
I’m not against page builders by any stretch,
Are you overwhelmed by hundreds of content marketing tasks? Click here for some tips on becoming a better solo content marketing ninja with WordPress.
Content marketing is the rage. But with so many activities to take care of – from content writing and distribution to SEO and performance optimization – it gets really difficult to effectively execute and manage it. As a result, the market is being bombarded with content marketing automation tools from all directions. Whether it’s Hubspot, Marketo, or Act-On, each calls for an investment of thousands of dollars in implementation and upkeep, with the promise of turning your business around. But there are two big issues that make me cringe at this scenario:
In their quest to make everything doable from a single software platform, all these tools have sacrificed on the flexibility and quality achievable with separate applications. Yet, the prices are blown through the roof.
These tools are primarily built for big businesses with dedicated content marketing teams. But based on the numbers, I can safely assume that you’re a solo-entrepreneur or the only person in your team responsible for content marketing.
So as a one-man content marketing department of your business, how can you promote your content in a way that’s not only effective and affordable, but also
A great blog involves more than just writing. It's about outreach and joining conversations. Check out this guide on blogging rules & etiquette for success.
The Complete Guide There’s no doubt WordPress is became the most powerful blogging platform on the planet. It’s easy to update, easy to use, and flexible enough to support dozens of bells and whistles.
None of that matters, however, if your blog isn’t up to par.
We’ve created this four chapter guide to help beginners understand how to build a great blog, one which will attract readers, keep them, and build an unforgettable community.
You see, a great blog is about more than great writing. It’s about reaching out and joining a conversation, and doing so in a way that is professional, eye-catching, and interesting. There are a lot of unspoken rules of blogging you should know, and there are some behind-the-scenes tricks which can help you build a better blog. Our goal is to provide you with both.
Blogging doesn’t have to be hard, but it helps to know what you’re doing. Our guide is designed to help you build a great blog from the ground up. However, you can also use these tips to retool an existing blog.
Good Blogging Takes Great Planning
Your goals will have a big impact on the way you handle your blog. A blog meant to inspire thought and debate
A look at the Underscores starter theme project with suggestions on how it could be improved.
Underscores is one of the best starter themes out there. I use it as a base for public themes, and very often for custom themes also. It’s that good for several reasons: Build accessibility in mind.
Well documented and modern templates.
Community effort building it better.
It does speed up your work.
I usually generate my new theme using underscores.me but did you know that there is also site called Components? In there you can get a jump start for business, portfolio, magazine, or traditional blog theme.
With all that said, I’m not perfectly happy about Underscores development.
Underscores (_s) Development Ideas
You often hear that you should fork _s. And there are many great forks out there, like wd_s and Air. But this article is not about forks.
It’s about how _s can continue being the greatest starter theme out there.
Remember that _s is Automattic product and some (or many) of the decision are not on community hands. But if you ask me it needs same kind attention than default themes like Twenty Seventeen.
Here is my short list how we can improve _s theme development.
After every default theme we should look what issues was inherited from _s theme and fix them.
Automattic pulls the rug out from a hopeful .blog owner. It's all explained at the end, I guess, but it's an interesting tale nevertheless.
The .blog registry backtracked on its promise to send popular domains to auction. In May, co-founder and CEO of Automattic (WordPress) Matt Mullenweg announced that his company had won the auction to become the registry for the new .blog TLD:
I’m excited we won and think that it will be both an amazing business going forward and give lots of folks an opportunity to have a fantastic domain name in a new namespace and with an easy-to-say TLD. You can sign up to be first in line to reserve a domain here.
At the time the link led to a WordPress.com page where you could sign up for updates (the full get.blog website was not up yet). Thinking that chris.blog had a nice to ring to it, I signed up immediately.
On August 18th, I received this email:
Ok, let's do this! The site listed chris.blog for $30/year. But when you clicked through you discovered that they require a $220 application fee (plus the $30 for the first year; a total of $250). I was ok with this price point as long as it would be refunded if I didn't get the domain.
The site made no mention of whether the application fee was refundable, so I emailed the support team and they confirmed that it was
According to research group, some tech companies have provided the infrastructure needed for terrorist groups to thrive.
WordPress, unwittingly, has just become a breeding ground for terrorists. According to the Counter Extremism Project (CEP), a non-partisan research and advocacy group, US-based tech companies have provided the infrastructure needed for Middle Eastern extremist groups to thrive. WordPress.com — a popular blogging platform — plays host to its fair share of these sites.
In a society that values free speech, this is the unfortunate byproduct. Tech companies worldwide are now waging internal battles in attempts to decide where free speech crosses the line into something else entirely. And according to CEP, WordPress is choosing the wrong side. “In our experience dealing with tech companies, when they don’t want to do something, they talk about free speech, and when they do want to do something, they talk about terms of service,” David Ibsen, executive director of the Counter Extremism Project, told The Washington Post.
WordPress, Ibsen claims, typically sides with the former — even when content is in blatant violation of its own terms of service.
The content we’re talking about here isn’t harmless propaganda. CEP cites examples of beheading
Yes, there are lots of great tools to help non-techies build a site. But pro designers/devs are still vital to success.
Technology moves rapidly, turning the tried and true into relics of the past. It happens to every industry – web design included. So it seems that there are those who look at web designers as somehow being headed toward that same obsolete status. With the advent of better do-it-yourself tools for creating websites, the power of complex layouts are no longer just for CSS junkies. Using high-end WordPress plugins enable just about anyone to add functionality like eCommerce, forms, multimedia and more.
While those tools are all well and good, I still don’t believe it makes web designers anywhere near obsolete. No, in my admittedly biased opinion, I think quality designers and developers are needed now more than ever. Here are just a few reasons why…
We Serve More than Hamburger Helper
I’m not much of a cook. But give me a box of Hamburger Helper, and I can create something resembling a tasty meal. Still, for the health and well-being of my family, a well-prepared meal that didn’t come from a box is far better.
Similarly, no matter how good a page builder or 3rd party web application is at helping the non-technical person set up a website, they don’t
This is a nice article about organizing large WordCamps. The growth and challenges.
With the next edition of WordCamp Europe on the horizon, Jenny Beaumont finds herself thinking about event growth past and present, and about what success might look like for all of us in this new year. Editor’s note: This guest post is written by Jenny Beaumont, a co-organizer of WordCamp Paris and WordCamp Europe. She’s spent the last two decades building things in and around the web, writes a terrific newsletter, and lives in France.
One of the highlights of my year, and a fitting end to 2016 as my sabbatical drew to a close, was attending the 2nd annual WordCamp US, held December 2-4 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The trip met my expectations in every way, from the warm-hearted nature of the locals to the super-sized portions at every delicious meal, and from the diversity of attendees to all of the extraordinary conversations I had during that short week I was in town.
“You might have noticed that this year’s programming at WordCamp US had some more of a human side, in addition to just the technical that we’ve had before,” said Matt Mullenweg, co-founder of WordPress and CEO of Automattic, during his much-anticipated State of the Word.
Alex shares the things he learnt when he tried to release a premium theme 6 years ago.
I’d like to take you back in time six years, to a time when the world of blogging was very different. The “premium WordPress theme” was in its relative infancy, the default WordPress theme was Kubric (HuffPo claims “Kubrick has helped change the face of cyberspace”) and WordPress 2.9 had just launched, boasting the addition of being able to “trash” posts.
The default WordPress theme at the time, which “helped change the face of cyperspace”.
At this time I was 15 and running writing a lot of WordPress tutorials, alongside studying for my GCSEs. I could see the gold rush to sell WordPress themes happening and reasonably assumed I could be part of it.
I spent six months building an okay theme with a partner and didn’t go great. The product failed. After talking about survivorship bias (and accusing the classic product case study of misleadingly highlight success) I figured I should share my story and (in an attempt to avoid survivorship bias) clearly say what I’d do differently now.
Let me walk you through what I did wrong and what lessons can be learned from my unsuccessful foray into the WordPress theme market.
David Hayes shares his views on why every Web Professional should learn WP development. An interesting read.
There are lots of ways to make a living on the internet. You can be a marketer who helps people make money online. You can be a social media maven who helps a celebrity like Jessica Alba connect with her fans. You can be an e-commerce seller who sells great niche goods to fans from around the world. You can be an expert at an important technology and use that skill to help people to have better online businesses. And I’ve hardly scratched the surface. If you think of yourself as a web implementer, designer, or even a developer who is too good for WordPress, I want to convince you that it is worth learning.
The thesis of this pieces is all those people, and more, should learn WordPress development. If you think of yourself as a web implementer, designer, or even a developer who is too good for WordPress, I want to convince you that it is worth learning. There are lots of reasons that learning WordPress is valuable. The core reason is that with WordPress development in your tool belt, you’ll deliver better solutions for the people you help. You may not do it a lot. And your greater technical skill may not be enough to make an ill-conceived business succeed. But you can and