How To Create A Blog (Part VIII)

It continues from How To Create A Blog (Part VII). Now lets continue with How To Create A Blog (Part VIII).

How To Create A Blog (Part VIII)

d) Jetpack / Jetpack Lite

How To Create A Blog (Part VIII)

Jetpack is a mega-plugin that I highly recommend if you are just getting started. Because it includes many useful features that previously needed other plugins apart or simply didn’t exist. There are more than 30 modules that can be activated individually as they are independent modules.

In addition, it seems to me that they have solved their usability very well. All the modules are really easy to set up, and include, of course, a help. Personally, among all the modules I would say that, in general terms, the most interesting are these:

– Statistics

It is a module of basic statistics, but enough for the day to day (visits, page views, traffic sources, etc.). It is very comfortable to be viewed within WordPress. But, that yes: it does not replace a web analytics tool such as Google Analytics.

– Disclose/Share

This module adds a customizable social button bar to share content. A “tip” is the functionality for automatic dissemination of new content. In other words, when a new post is published, it is automatically tweetted, shared on Facebook, etc.

– Contact form

A contact page is simply essential. Thanks to this module it is very easy to create the corresponding form (which will send you an email with the content of the form to your email). It can be a good alternative to the Contact 7 plugin I mentioned before.

– Spelling and Grammar

A useful little spelling and grammar checker.

– Omnisearch

A comprehensive search tool that searches for the terms you enter anywhere on the blog, in posts, comments, plugin descriptions, etc.

– Photon

A free external image caching service from Automattic (the company behind WordPress) that will make images be served from its CDN (Content Delivery Network) and not from your server.

– Monitor

This module monitors your blog’s crashes and in the event that your blog is actually down, it alerts you by email.

How To Create A Blog (Part VIII)

– Mobile theme

Very interesting if your WordPress theme is not well suited to mobile devices, but you still do not want to change it. With this module you have a solution to adapt your blog to mobile devices without having to change the theme.

– Custom CSS

With this module you can customize the aesthetics of any theme you have installed. The “but” is that you need to know how to use the CSS language.

However, it is one of those things that I strongly recommend you to learn if you see that your blog project is moving forward because knowing CSS gives you access to another world of possibilities.

A “but” that I have to put to Jetpack is that his comment module is incompatible with several plugins to combat spam, including the plugin “Anti-Spam” that this post also talks about, but on the other hand, I do not think that much is lost by not using this module. In addition, there are individual plugins that perform these functions.

One last comment about Jetpack. I strongly recommend you not to use JetPack’s mail subscription module, but a tool like MailChimp.

The reason is that the Jetpack module is very limited, it is quite captive because it doesn’t allow you to do basic things like downloading the mailing list, nor does it allow you to see statistics of shipments (opening rates, clicks, etc.) or customize the information fields you want to collect.

The mailing list is the biggest asset of a blog, so don’t make the mistake of using a bad tool for it as unfortunately Jetpack’s tool is. Below we return to this topic and talk about tool options for your mailing list.

How To Create A Blog (Part VIII)

e) WordPress SEO

How To Create A Blog (Part VIII)

WordPress SEO helps to optimize your blog at SEO level. It has an enormous amount of functionalities of which I want to highlight three:

SEO On Page Assistance: From a keyword or phrase, this plugin measures the quality of your SEO On Page. That is to say, it does things like, for example, checking if the keyword appears in the relevant places (title, URL, text of the post, etc.) and depending on it assesses the degree of optimization and identifies the strengths and weaknesses for you to review.

The automatic creation and sending of Sitemaps: This will help Google in the correct indexing of your site and will therefore be favorable for your web positioning.

It allows you to establish the “Google Authorship”: It is what identifies you as the author of your content compared to Google generates those photos of the author in the search results that we all know.

f) Google XML Sitemaps

Google XML Sitemaps creates a map of your site (list of blog URLs) to send to Google. The mission of this map is to provide Google with the correct indexation of your site and is therefore important for the SEO of your blog.

This function is also integrated in the previous WordPress SEO plugin, but, nevertheless, some SEO experts such as Alex Navarro consider the maps generated by this plugin better than those created by WordPress SEO and recommend not using this function in WordPress SEO and implementing it better with this plugin.

In our case we are using WordPress SEO and we have not perceived any problems, but it is possible that we will try to follow this advice to see if you really notice a difference.

Finally, in order to use a sitemap, you will need to create an account in the Google Webmaster Tool (it’s free), which I highly recommend anyway for the invaluable information it provides.

How To Create A Blog (Part VIII)

g) Other plugins

Over time and as you evolve and consolidate your blog you will come up with ideas that you want to implement in your blog and this will translate into new plugins that you want to install to expand the standard capabilities of WordPress.

In addition, depending on the specific features of your blog there are many plugins that can add small improvements that translate into tangible benefits such as more traffic or a better conversion rate of your mailing list.

Continue reading at: How To Create A Blog (Part IX)