I am not a technical person and I want others like me to know that they can start a blog without being super technical. I’ve been getting a lot of e-mails from bloggers-to-be who feel overwhelmed by Search Engine Optimization. So, this post is for anyone who is hesitant to start a blog because they want to learn everything about blogging and SEO before they take that first step.
When it comes to blogging, the first thing to remember is “he who hesitates is lost”, so start a blog today. Don’t wait for the perfect time because there will never be a perfect time. If you’re a perfectionist and you’re trying to learn everything before you start a blog, you will surely be lost. I jumped right into blogging and bought MCB without knowing much about it. I’ve made some mistakes, but blogging is a “learn by doing” process. If you wait until you know everything then you’ll never get your blog off the ground. So I say just start your blog and learn as you go. Lucky for you, there are hundreds of bloggers out there ready and willing to help you with great posts about SEO and anything else you need to know about blogging. (more…)
Last week, Oprah had Suze Orman on her show talking about this economy and what we can do to protect ourselves. Anyone who’s ever seen Suze Orman knows that she’s a straight talker and uhh, how should I say this, a little scary. To tell you the truth, I don’t think I would want her as MY financial advisor because I couldn’t handle being face-to-face with her looking me in the eye asking what I spend my money on. (I know where my faults are and don’t need a lecture on it.. or do I? lol) But I understand that Suze knows what we need to do to become financially secure and even wealthy, so I take her advice to heart! Most Americans are spending money that we don’t have and there are many ways that we could cut back. We make excuses to hold onto the things we can’t afford and the time has come to “save ourselves” as Suze says, “and save our children to make sure they have the essentials of life… such as health insurance, and not just THINGS.”
To protect ourselves in this economy we’ll have to downsize, tighten our belts and change our ways. We’re going back into a cash economy because there will be no more credit for some of us and for others, the credit we do have will be lowered and watched carefully. The institutions we’ve been borrowing from have been borrowing money to give us the loans, and they’ve been borrowing their money, and no one ever really had the money to back it up. We’ve been living on borrowed money for so long that we take it for granted and hope and pray everything works out. It’s time to get REAL and save ourselves from financial ruin because hoping and praying can’t pay the bills. We need to become proactive to survive in this economy.
In the Part 1 of Back Up Your Blog, Andreas gave some great instructions on how to back up your blog and Secure your cPanel. A backup is the most important thing we can do to protect our blogs IF a hacking or any other trouble ever happens upon your blog. I think he made a fantastic point about practicing the back up process to make sure it works and to get used to doing it. It is very common for bloggers to have faithfully backed up their blogs only to find out the backup didn’t work properly. So, as Andreas said… practice the backup often until it becomes second nature and easy to execute when you REALLY need it.
How LloydLopez.com helped secure my site
Now here’s a few more helpful things you can do to secure your site. Lloyd Lopez secured my site after helping me with a Feedburner, and other problems I had after my data transfer fiasco. Lloyd works in the technological field and his blog, which he does in his spare time, is about techie stuff too. We’ve been in touch by phone a few times and he’s one busy guy because I know his work schedule! (Holy Smokes! lol) But as you’ll see on his blog, he still seems to get in some time to have fun with his friends and goes to a lot of resorts for his work retreats… (Must be nice, Lloyd!! lol)
Among the other qualifications that he needs for his work, Lloyd is also independently “Brainbench Certified” in the following: Computer Technical Support, Technical Desk Help (Microsoft), MS Windows XP Desktop Administration, Computer Fundamentals, Information Technology Terminology. Lloyd will do Blog Consulting if time permits. So if you ever need any extra help that you’re willing to pay for, I can attest to Lloyd’s good reputation and professionalism and I recommend him highly! I’m keeping his name in my “little black blog book” as I’m sure I will need him sometime in the future! lol
The first thing Lloyd recommended and installed for me was the WP Automatic Update Plugin since it’s the easiest way to upgrade your WordPress blog especily if this is the first time that you’re upgrading.
Installation is easy…. you download the zip file, unzip it, upload the resulting folder into your plugins folder and activate it. Once activated, you have a new entry on your Manage page in your blog’s WordPress admin, called Automatic Upgrade. When you activate it, it will walk you through the steps. This way you can secure your site by upgrading to the newest verions, making sure your plug-ins are up-to-date and always having a backup.
WordPress Backup Utility
Lloyd also recommended and installed a WordPress Backup utility program. It will send your backups to your e-mail address on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis (whichever you prefer). But remember, have it come to a different address than your blog webmail address, just to be safe.
Lloyd installed a Login LockDown on my site. Login LockDown records the IP address and timestamp of every failed WordPress login attempt. After someone makes a certain number of attempts to log in to your WordPress within a short period of time from the same IP, then the login function is disabled for all requests from that IP. This helps to prevent brute force password discovery. Currently the plugin defaults to a 1 hour lock out of an IP block after 3 failed login attempts within 5 minutes. (It can be modified from the Options panel to be however many you want and within what time period you wish.) If the log in attempt was from someone who as authorized to get into your WordPress account then the Admisitrator can release the locked out IP manually from the panel so that they can get in. If it was someone who was not authorized then you know someone has attempted to get into your blog and was trying out different passwords. As you can imagine, Login LockDown a great thing to have for security reasons.
Both Lloyd and Andreas stressed that we should have a strong password. Some people use passwords that are easy to figure out, like a “favorite” word and a few numbers (birthday, etc) because it’s easy to remember. If it’s easy for you to remember… it’s definitely hackable by almost anyone! Instead, you should keep a little notebook of your passwords since the good passwords (strong ones) should not be memorizable… they should be “garbled”. As Andreas said in the previous post, don’t use dictionary words. Use a combination of letters and numbers and symbols to make a strong password and make a habit of changing your passwords often.
Ask Your Host About Backups
You should be asking your hosting company if they back up your blog and if they don’t, then get a different host who does. I use HostGater for MomsCashBlog and it is also what you will get when you use the Free Blog Tutorial. Hostgater backup blogs every Sunday. Get to know your host by calling them and seeing what they have to offer you and how they work. If a blog disappears or is having problems, you should call your host first thing. (sometimes you will find that they are having trouble on their end and it’s not your blog being hacked. lol). I’m the kind of person who does business best over the phone. HostGater and I have had a lot of talks and I would never deal with a host who I could not talk to in person. Trouble shooting requires good communication and phone conversation are the best form of communicating that I know of.
I hope this was helpful to some of you. If anyone has any further suggestions to help others secure their blog, please leave a comment to help others out. I know my readers get a lot of good advice from the comments as they’ve told me so thru e-mails. There’s a lot of new people deciding if they want to start a blog with the Free Blog Tutorial and they value the opinions of seasoned bloggers… (they also visit YOUR blog afterwards!) And, and always, if you’re thinking of starting a blog and have any questions, make a comment here and someone will answer you!
One big lesson I’ve learned about blogging is that you can’t worry too much about what other’s think. It’s just like life, you have to row your own boat and not let anyone else get in your way. Blogging can be kind of scary at first because you could be talking to the whole world… but then again, you could be talking to no one but yourself. (and you will be in the beginning!) You have to just do your own thing. Remember, it’s YOUR blog and no one else has the right to tell you what to do with it.
Over the past 2 months, I’ve had some e-mails from many people who’ve used the Free Blog Tutorial and now have blogs. Some don’t quite dare to take that first step and go public with thier blogs… and some have stopped altogether. I know there’s a lot of pressure for beginner bloggers because I’m going thru it myself. All I can do is give you a sisterly “pep talk” and tell you don’t give up, and don’t put too much pressure on yourself. (more…)
One thing you can do to bring in new visitors to your blog is make posts that are ”off topic”. Studies have proven that new visitors are the ones most likely to click on your ads and use them for all they are worth. When a person first visits a site his/her brain is stimulated and engaged in the process. Their minds are open and they become curious and they don’t mind pushing those buttons and checking out your ads to see what it’s all about. After a visitor has been on a site for a while and becomes a ”regular” he/she becomes desensitized and eventually stop using your ads. There’s a certain point where visitors only read your posts.
By going off topic and bringing in someone new you not only benefit from their first time curiosity and clicking instincts… chances are very good that you can change their thought process and that can be good for both you and the visitors. (more…)
You’ve got 3 days off, so why don’t you put up your website NOW. Just use MomsCashBlog’s Free Blog Tutorial and you can have your own website up and ready to go before the weekend is done. It won’t even use up the whole weekend because some say the tutorial takes less than an hour!! (not counting the waiting period for set up….which is ” break time”.) You can do it yourself with the easy step-by-step instructions.
Take a look at the Blog Tutorial and make some decisions of about what you want to name your website. You can even play around and put some names in at Step One to make up names and see if YOUR web domain name is available. There are a lot of websites out there so the availability of good names is getting scarce. It’s a good idea to register your domain name NOW! If you don’t have time to finish the whole tutorial in one sitting, you should at least choose your domain name and buy it before someone else gets to it first. Later, when you have more time, you can come back to the tutorial and continue with Step Two and then on to Step Three…and BAM!!…you’ve got your own website registered on the internet! Easy as One, Two, Three!
But the tutorial doesn’t stop there! Steps Four and Five get you going on WordPress, the most widely used blogging/website program on the internet. The Blog Tutorial continues to instruct you on how to set your site up, choose a theme (the look and design), post article, and make space for your ads and widgets!
Remember, with this tutorial you don’t have to do it all at once. You can start the process today and come back to it whenever you choose. Use the whole weekend to leisurely set up your site….take a day, take just half a day, or you can even do it in an hour, if you’re fast on the keyboard.
Fast or Slow…Do it at Your own pace! And once you have your own blog or website, that’s when the fun begins. Come back to MomsCashBlog and you can even make some extra cash by placing ads on your website! Take a look at the Free Tutorial and see just how easy it is to put up a website!
Happy Memorial Day……Support our Troops!!!
Never underestimate the power of FREE! I partnered a successful retail business so I know what that one 4- letter word that starts with “F” can do. Using the word “free” can bring people out of the woodwork…and that’s what blogging’s about isn’t is? We all want new blog traffic, because let’s face it, they are the ones who will potentially use your services, buy your goods, push those buttons…whatever it is you want from them.
I bought MCB knowing how valuable the Free Blog Tutorial would be to the newbies in the blogging world. I have new people coming, using the tutorial, and loving it, and they are using the other resources that MomsCashBlog has to offer too.
Some day I will try just posting a big headline “Free Blog Tutorial” with a link and nothing else, since that’s essentially how I’m getting new peeps to my site. I’m going to give that a try and watch my traffic…and mostly my accounts, to see what happens. Should be an interesting experiment in blogging for me.
The New MomsCashBlog is for people who want a blog and want to make money with it, but don’t know where to start…so that’s why the Free Blog Tutorial is so valuable to me. The new traffic YOU want might be different from mine, so tailor your “free thing” to whatever your own niche is. I’m sure you have some information that people would pay for. Of course, just using the word FREE won’t make viewers stay long enough to matter. That “free thing” you give them must have some value or it could backfire and aggravate your customer or viewer. Just as happens in retail, if you give it away free and it’s good, they will take it, and they might even want everything else you have to offer!!