Beach Blogging 101 – Session 2: Plugin and Unwind
OK… so let me say first off that it’s not totally my fault that I didn’t get to finish my session last week. The internet access in the condo we were staying in was nothing less than horrible (it was a great condo otherwise, but let’s just say that if it was online it didn’t get done very fast). Mount on top of that the fact the nearest Starbucks was 25 minutes in either direction and you have yourself a 100 percent valid excuse as to why I didn’t post last week.
Yeah… So… sorry about that.
At any rate, I’m back in the land of Wi-Fi with my in-laws in Alabama and wanted to continue the vacation atmosphere a little bit. Therefore, the posting series will continue as warranted!
The last post was a sure-fire way to make sure your blog was up to date with the latest patches (which, before the post and during my vacation, I was victim of a useless [but still annoying] bug that caused my password to be able to be reset from anywhere). Needless to say I upgraded as soon as I could.
Today I’m going to be talking about 3 plug-ins that rock my world – ones that go on 95% of every WordPress installation that I do. Well, actually there’s at least 6 to 10, but this is the short list. Also, there’s one I’ll be going in depth about – All In One SEO (but that’s another post altogether).
So, without further ado, let’s get to it! These plug-ins are in no particular order, so don’t think I’m playing favorites – they all serve their purpose!
WP-Greetbox is a fun little plugin that does what every good blog should: calls the user to a specific action. But, it’s hard to call people to action when their situation (or referring website) is different. WP-GreetBox fixes that problem by detecting the site a person comes from, acknowledging their visit, and giving them a specific call to action based on that referral. Coming from digg? “Digg this site!” Visiting from StumbleUpon? “Be awesome and click the thumb-up button on your way out!” Coming from anywhere else? “Hey, welcome, subscribe to the feed”. You can see it in action on this very blog at the top if you’ve come from a referring site such as Twitter or Google.
This is one of those “plug-ins in disguise”. It’s actually a 3-in-1 plug-in that serves many purposes. It’s main purpose is to redirect permalinks from an old blog or to funnel traffic through to a mis-wired connection. Example: You change your permalink structure but one post is still getting traffic to its old permalink, and it’s throwing a 404 error. The plug-in will tell you its logging the 404 error and will allow you to set that permalink up to redirect to the right place.
Of course, this also means it’s a built-in URL shortner.
http://mitchcanter.com/twitter/ for example – click on it and see where it goes 😉
TweetMeme’s retweet button is the new Digg button for blog posts. It not only puts a really handy way to tweet out a site’s name and post link, but it shows you how many have been placed using said button (or any that turn up on the URL shortening service you set up).