Second Update: now with plugin! – Don’t hit update just yet…WP 3.8 overhauls UI, breaks dashboard widgets.

After getting notified that 3.8 was available, I eagerly ran the update, and then immediately wished I hadn’t. While the UI updates in WP 3.8 definitely hit the goal of “modern interface”, they failed hard at the goal of “displaying existing dashboard widgets correctly”, and pretty much failed responsive design in general.

Continue reading Second Update: now with plugin! – Don’t hit update just yet…WP 3.8 overhauls UI, breaks dashboard widgets.

Creating an autonomous service for your WordPress plugin using wp-cron

When integrating third party API’s with a WordPress plugin, a lot of developers take the easy route by forcing all of the interactions to occur on submit; the end user pays the price by waiting through an extended submit process that has them staring at an hourglass or loading screen for far longer than they should. If the end user is done when the submit button is hit, don’t make them wait through your post process just to get to a thank you screen. Store the data locally, and use an autonomous service to figure out what to do with it asynchronously.

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Do you have a problem with authority? (If you’re struggling to find your voice online, you just might).

I asked the members of our local networking group to complete the following question:

“The thing that keeps me from being more visible online is: ____________”

The answers had a few commonalities, but frustration was a common theme.

  • “The ever changing rules that I need to keep up with. Just when I think I understand what I need to be doing, it changes.”
  • “Knowing where to spend my time. Different sites work for different people. Ex: Pinterest appeals to females. Reddit appeals to programmers. How do I know which sites have my audience and will help convert them to customers?”
  • “Not knowing where to start- so perhaps fear! Or not knowing what would be most appropriate for my field (counseling practice).”
  • “Not always having the “in” to be heard.”
  • “The sheer volume – I’m am but a drop in the firehose.”
  • “Being small, doing what I can myself with limited tech knowledge ( & interest) but probably need to keep doing…”
  • “The product I have cannot be touched and a reluctance to call and find out what I know.”

Continue reading Do you have a problem with authority? (If you’re struggling to find your voice online, you just might).

Exporting the results of a custom WPDB query to a downloaded CSV

If you’ve been playing with WordPress’s $wpdb object, you know that you can build robust custom queries that stray well outside the realm of posts and pages. If you’re building some heavy duty custom functionality that requires reporting of some sort, or even just want to be able to download your user info, here’s a quick method to output to a CSV.

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Plussers win big with YouTube/Google+ comment integration.

If you’ve been online anytime in the last 24 hours, you may have heard that Google finally completed integrating their social layer with YouTube. Oh, correction, I meant you may have heard that GOOGLE+ COMPLETELY DESTROYED YOUTUBE AND TURNED EVERYTHING INTO A STINKING PILE OF CACA. (This is actually a rare occasion when my hyperbole doesn’t do the rantfest justice). Clearly, Tubers everywhere are up in arms. Google+ members, on the other hand, have had a mixed reaction.

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SEO is NOT Marketing: It’s time we dispelled some myths about website traffic

I hear from clients all the time that they’re looking for other ways to improve their SEO, and that’s a laudable goal. However, in many instances, the question they’re actually asking is “How do I improve the traffic to my site?”. While making sure that your site conforms to the appropriate schema and markup for search engines is definitely a necessity, SEO is not in itself a traffic funnel. It’s a crucial aspect of your site’s overall marketing strategy, but with fifty thousand other sites in your space all optimizing their SEO as well, clearly there can only be so many winners, and so many ways to divide the eyeballs. At the end of the day, your web marketing strategy has to be comprehensive to stand out from the crowd.

With that in mind, let’s examine some myths about SEO, and shed a little light on them:

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A quick start guide to Google+

Over on Google+, Alex Garcia put together a pretty awesome quick start guide for G+ that deserved some sharing. However, I know some of you aren’t sure enough where to start that sending a direct link wouldn’t necessarily be helpful, and that it could use a little bit of expanding. If you’ve been interested in seeing what Google+ is all about, but had no clue where to go or what to do when you first signed in, read on.

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Three things Google+ needs to do for webmasters.

The big news in social media space this week is Facebook rolling out embedded posts for websites. It’s not a surprising feature; Facebook took the early initiative in providing tools for webmasters to use to integrate their social media presence with their websites. In fact, between authentication, Fanboxes, and Facebook commenting, the API has driven much of Facebook’s growth as a web services provider over pure social media platform. Given this, it’s surprising to see how little Google+ has done for the sites who have become early adopters of their website services. While Google Authentication and the still evolving Google+ Comments system are both good examples of enhanced integration for G+ savvy webmasters, there’s a large boat being missed by the Plus team right now that I hope will be resolved soon. Here are the three core features Plus needs to roll out to encourage mass integration on the level Facebook has:

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