Here’s an interesting question I saw recently: my theme is not widget-ready, so how do I insert an opt-in form on my WordPress blog? There are a couple of ways of doing that. 1. Using the What Would Seth Godin Do Plugin This plugin was originally designed to offer different personal greetings, posted at the… . . . Read more

One of my customer’s WordPress installations was hacked and turned into an attack site over the weekend. I got a plea for help on New Year’s Day because she couldn’t view her site or log in – she just got an error message whenever she tried to do either. When I reviewed the file that… . . . Read more

I was helping someone get their blog configured the other day and we came to setting up WP-Security-Scan – one of the plugins I do recommend. It takes you through some pretty straightforward steps that will strengthen your WordPress installation against mass bot hack attacks. One of the recommendations it makes is to change your… . . . Read more

Back here I wrote about the benefits of using as few plugins as possible on your site. As is typically me, this has turned into a bit of a crusade (removing plugins from my site, that is). Here, again, are the reasons for my crusade: Plugins can slow down site load times, they may fall… . . . Read more

The 1-click installation service offered by most hosting providers for various applications is wonderful. In particular, it’s opened up self-hosted WordPress blogging to a whole tribe of people who might have baulked at the manual installation. But there are some things to keep in mind. And please don’t take these as criticisms – they’re not… . . . Read more

I saw one of those VERY IMPORTANT READ THIS NOW posts in a forum the other day. It was all about how WordPress could get us banned from the search engines. I normally don’t go anywhere near posts with titles like that, but considering the mutual love affair between Google and WordPress I was intrigued… . . . Read more

If you read (and remember) any of my articles from a few years back you can take me to task now. Because back then I raved about plugins and added them to my WordPress sites at will. But I’ve changed my mind. Don’t get me wrong. There are some excellent plugins that do great jobs… . . . Read more

I see a lot of questions asking how to make a WordPress post sticky. A sticky post is one that stays on the front page of your blog so that, same as sticky posts in forums, it will always be displaid first. What’s the point of that? It depends on the content of your blog… . . . Read more

Many thanks to Jake Hyten for asking this question: how to set up the Google XML Sitemap Generator Plugin. Thanks for your question, Jake – and the steps follow with the greatest of pleasure :) Firstly, why would you want to install the Google XML Sitemap Generator Plugin? Because it creates a sitemap for the… . . . Read more

Another question I see quite often is people asking how to copy a post developed in Word into WordPress. I create all my posts initially in either Word or Open Office, because with both of those packages I get spelling and grammar checking and the ability to test different layouts. Once you’re satisfied with the… . . . Read more

How can I SEO my WordPress blog? How can I make it easy to find on-line? Those are questions I see quite often in the forums. The fact is, your WordPress blog is already pretty search engine friendly. If you don’t believe me take it from Matt Cutts, head of anti-spam at Google – here’s… . . . Read more

Here’s a question I see over and over again in different forums: ‘Why does WordPress attract so much spam? I didn’t get any on my Blogger blog’. There are a couple of reasons for this: firstly WordPress is targetted because it’s such a popular platform. Secondly, if you don’t activate Akismet, the anti spam plugin… . . . Read more

I saw a question from someone this week asking about plugins and whether they slow down site load times. The answer is yes – they can. And there are other things to remember too: they can clash with other plugins, your theme or even WordPress itself. So what’s the best number of plugins to have… . . . Read more

I saw a thread today on the Warrior Forum from someone having trouble inserting an image into a WordPress post. From what he said on the thread I think the cause was more than just finger trouble – but I figured I’d put up a process for it anyway. So here it is – how… . . . Read more

Here’s an interesting question I saw today: what’s the difference between pages and categories in WordPress? Categories and pages are both powerful elements of WordPress, but they’re very different. One is part of the WordPress filing system, the other is for displaying important (but static) information to your visitors. Here’s the answer I offered: WordPress… . . . Read more

Matt Cutts is head of the Anti-Spam Team at Google – so he knows a thing or two about how to do well in the Google natural search results. In this video he talks about WordPress (and why he uses it), how to set it up, things to do and things to avoid if you… . . . Read more

Sometimes, just sometimes, the commands on the toolbars in the WordPress post- or page-write screens decide they’re not going to work. As frustrating as that is, particularly when you’re trying to get a post published by a deadline, the fix is usually pretty simple. But that didn’t stop me taking 5 hours today, doing all… . . . Read more

Well – I have to eat my own words. Back here I wrote a post about how I improved the search functionality on this blog by searching for and adding a new plugin. In that post I was critical of Google Custom Search. Recently that plugin that I eventually installed was updated, a move which… . . . Read more

This is just a ranting article… I use the automatic plugin-upgrade function on WordPress because I’m short of time. But the benefits of doing that are completely wiped out when the upgrade has the effect of erasing all your plugin settings and disabling it. There were two plugin upgrades yesterday on which that happened.   … . . . Read more

Back here and here I listed some plugins that I generally use on new blogs. Since then I’ve come across some more. However, as I’ve mentioned previously, you should be thoughtful about the plugins you install. Not all of them are faultlessly coded and those that rely on external sites for data (e.g. related sites… . . . Read more

Update 21 May 2012: This article has been updated with a newer one covering WordPress backups in more detail. You can find the newer article here. Original article starts here: Here’s a question I saw today: can someone explain how to back up my WordPress blog? Backing up your blog is an essential housekeeping task… . . . Read more

WordPress always used to frustrate the life out of me when I tried to use the HTML view to write posts. I like writing in HTML. It’s a precise language and you’re able to control exactly how you want your page to look, especially when you combine it with CSS. But WordPress has always had… . . . Read more

Important note: We’re currently on WordPress 3.X and the process for managing widgets is the same as described both in this article and in the video on widgets in WordPress 2.8. If the process changes in a future version of WordPress I’ll publish an updated article. Note that widgets are different from plugins. Widgets are… . . . Read more

Important: Which version of WordPress do you want to install a widget in? WordPress before 2.8: click here WordPress 2.8 or later: click here Installing widgets in WordPress versions before 2.8: When you set up a new WordPress blog you have the option to add some widgets to your sidebars. What are widgets? Widgets are… . . . Read more

A question that I see quite often is how to install a WordPress theme. WordPress themes, particularly Premium Themes, are becoming increasingly sophisticated. Themes like Thesis are more than just themes – they’re platforms that enable you to maximise the power of WordPress. If you’re a serious blogger, but not a PHP wiz, you should… . . . Read more

A while ago I published a step-by-step process for moving the content (posts, comments and labels) from your Blogger blog to a Wordpress blog. You can find it here. What I didn’t cover in that post, and what I’ve seen a lot of questions on since, is how to ensure you don’t lose your followers… . . . Read more

Important: Which version of WordPress do you want to install plugins in? WordPress versions before 2.8: click here. WordPress version 2.8 or later: click here. Installing and managing plugins in WordPress versions before 2.8 I quite often see questions from people asking how to install new plugins on WordPress. There are now more than 4,000… . . . Read more

I’ve been following the questions that people who are using WordPress have been asking on Twitter. As a result, I’ve put together a complete WordPress Tutorial that is designed for people using self-hosted WordPress (from WordPress.org) on their own domains. It takes them from deciding on a domain name, through finding a hosting provider to… . . . Read more