How to Show Total Number of Registered Users in WordPress

Have you ever wanted to show the total number of registered users on your WordPress site? Social proof like showing the number of registered users on your site, encourages others to register as well. In this article, we will show you how to show total number of registered users in WordPress.

How to Show Total Number of Registered Users in WordPress

Method 1: Show Registered User Count Using a WordPress Plugin

First thing you need to do is install and activate the Simple Blog Stats plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, you need to visit Settings » Simple Blog Stats page to configure plugin settings.

Settings page for Simple Blog Stats

This plugin allows you to show different stats from your WordPress site. You need to click on the shortcodes tab to expand it and then scroll down to the ‘number of users’ row.

Users shortcode settings

You will see the shortcode [sbs_users] with two text fields on both sides. These text fields contain HTML the plugin will add before and after the number of users.

By default, the shortcode will output HTML like this:

<span class="sbs-count-users">856</span>

If you are unsure, then just copy the shortcode [sbs_users] and click on the save settings button.

You can now add this shortcode to any WordPress post or page. You can also add it to a sidebar widget. If the shortcode does not work in the widget, then follow instructions in our guide on how to use shortcodes in your WordPress sidebar widget.

Method 2: Manually Show Number of Registered Users in WordPress with Code

This method requires you to add code to your WordPress site. If you haven’t done this before, then see our beginner’s guide on pasting snippets from web into WordPress.

You need to add the following code to your theme’s functions.php file or a site-specific plugin.

// Function to return user count
function wpb_user_count() { 
$usercount = count_users();
$result = $usercount['total_users']; 
return $result; 
} 
// Creating a shortcode to display user count
add_shortcode('user_count', 'wpb_user_count');

This code creates shortcode [user_count] which you can use in your WordPress posts, pages, or a sidebar widget to display the user count.

The function does not add any HTML formatting to the user count and simply returns the number. You may want to wrap the shortcode around HTML to use CSS or basic HTML formatting. For example:

<p>Join <strong>[user_count]</strong> other users who share your interest:</p>

Here is how it looked on our demo site:

Showing total number of users in WordPress widget

Note: We added a free signup button that redirected to a custom WordPress user registration page.

That’s all, we hope this article helped you learn how to show the total number of registered users in WordPress. You may also want to see our guide on how to moderate new user registrations in WordPress.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

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WordPress Plugin Directory

The WordPress Plugin Repository is rebranding as the WordPress Plugin _Directory_.

As “directory” refers to the entire plugin hosting service (the site, VCS, etc) and “repository” conventionally refers more specifically to just a VCS (such as GitHub, SVN, etc), we feel this will be less confusing and more in-line with the other aspects of WordPress.org.

We’re in the process of updating all our documentation.

Some Q & A

Gonna start posting or deleting all of my old drafts just to clean things up back here in the Admin Area. For example, here is a post that I wanted to flesh out with specific examples and all sorts of references, but it’s just been sitting and waiting for too long, so now I’m just gonna post it as-is. Enjoy or not, here it is..

These are examples of the types of dialogue and correspondence that I’m involved with “behind the scenes”, just about every day. These “Q & A” excerpts are from an email conversation taking place earlier this year.

On security

Here’s a security question from a customer named Paul:

Hi Jeff, i have a doubt regarding to Firewall 5G/6G.

Do you install the Firewall 5G htaccess directives on all WordPress sites you manage by default or not? I suppose so, but i would like to know your opinion about it.

I my case, i do it by default with some aditional extra configurations, like installing a the plugin IThemes Security and some common sense indications to customers, like meking backups frecuently, upgrading plugins, themes and WordPress as soon as possible.

..and my reply:

My strategy is this:

1) Whenever possible host my site, client sites on secure servers, then apply .htaccess rules like 5/6G *as needed* to fortify security.

2) For client sites that already are hosted on a weak/insecure server, advise to relocate to a more secure server. Then go with #1 above.

3) For client sites stuck on insecure servers, apply BBQ Pro and/or 6G Firewall, depending on whether or not .htaccess is available.

4) Always keep 100% reliable, periodical backups.

The key, of course, is hosting on secure servers.

This strategy is based on over 15 years of experience, and continues to serve me well in the online arena. I hope the info is useful for you.

Yes, I correspond via email in plain-text format.

On “builders”

Here is an interesting conversation with reader, Eric G.:

I follow your blog, have learned a lot from you and have a question on theming. I recently discovered [brand name] builder. the word “builder” sets off most developers as it does me. Im wondering what your take on it is. Would you ever use such a thing? Or your against it?

Interestingly I found [brand name] builder to be very cool in that its a “glorified content editor” that takes tiny mce to the next level. Till now, in my themes I left a space in my themes where the_content would be output and it was up to the author to make it look good.

If the author doesnt know html at all, they cant add any cool tricks or classes or columns. Like most blogs the content will just go straight down, with nothing breaking up its flow. It can end up looking stale sometimes. I struggle with this.

I can make themes, and headers and sidebars, and control post_meta, but I cant control the_content. i dont always know how the end user will place their content. [brand name] builder seems to allow me or any author to create fancy posts and pages instead of content that goes straight down.

Unfortunately i was met with A LOT of criticism for even saying such things and people telling me im no real developer. So i was wondering what you thought about these builder plugins.

To this I responded with the following, sort of shooting from the hip..

Glad to offer my own humble insights:

My own thoughts based on 15+ years of experience developing sites is that “builders” as you describe are just a royal pain and not worth the effort. They complicate the entire process, add further layers of complexity, abstract native APIs, and introduce potential security vectors. So yeah, based on solid experience, I can soundly advise anyone who is serious about the craft to avoid such “builders” at all costs; instead focus on mastering core languages and native functionality. It’s the difference between giving someone a fish and teaching them how to fish. Huge difference.

Otherwise, if you’re just an end user and/or not serious about design/development, then go for it. That’s why such helpers/builders/plugins exist in the first place.

I hope this information is useful, best of luck to you.

..to which Eric replies:

Thanks for the fast reply!

I guess I’ll stay away from them.

My only problem is sometimes clients have a lot of content that could have looked nicer had they known how to use html in the editor to break it up or make columns or a better layout. Example from site I’m making: [URL]

Content is very long. I may have to make special design choices just for this page which defeats the page templates purpose.

This is where I’m struggling.

..and then my follow-up response:

Man if it’s for your clients, then by all means give them a tool that they can use to get the job done. I thought you were asking for your own sake, for development, etc., which is a different story completely. If it were me, I would find the simplest, leanest plugin available to do only/exactly what I need to do (e.g., add columns to page layout), and stay away from anything more than that; i.e., avoid bloated plugins as much as possible. Keep it lean, mean, and close to core as possible.

Again, I engage these sorts of conversations almost daily, in an effort to help and give back to the web-dev and WordPress community. It’s a lot of work, and very time-consuming, but something I’ve been doing consistently for around 10 years now, and I still find it enjoyable and even educational.


How to Add Web Push Notification to Your WordPress Site

Have you noticed the web push notifications used on popular websites like Facebook? Recently one of our readers asked if it was possible to add web push notifications in WordPress. Ofcourse, it is. In this article, we will show you how to add web push notification to your WordPress site.

Adding web push notifications to a WordPress site

Why Add Web Push Notifications to Your WordPress Site?

Web push notifications are clickable messages displayed on top of user’s Desktop. They can be shown even when user’s browser is not open.

Web push notifications displayed on Desktop with Google Chrome, Firefox, and Safari web browsers

Aside from desktop, Web push notifications also work on mobile browsers.

Popular sites including Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and many others are already using web push notifications. It is proving to be more engaging than SMS, email marketing, and other social media. According to a survey, push notifications have a 50% open rate on mobile devices.

This means more engaged audience for your WordPress site and significant boost in your overall page views and returning visitors.

Having said that, let’s take a look at how to add web push notifications to a WordPress site.

Setting up Web Push Notifications in WordPress with OneSignal

OneSignal is a free service that allows you to add push notifications to any website, web, or mobile apps.

First thing you need to do is install and activate the OneSignal plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, the plugin will add a new menu item labeled OneSignal in your WordPress admin bar. Clicking on it will take you to plugin’s settings page.

OneSignal WordPress plugin settings

The settings page is divided into Setup and Configuration tabs. The setup tab is actually detailed documentation on how to setup OneSignal push notifications in WordPress. It has the same steps that we will show you in this tutorial.

To setup OneSignal, you will need to add different API keys and application IDs into the plugin settings.

Let’s get started.

Step 1: Create Google Keys

First you need to visit Google Services Wizard website.

Creating Google services app

Simply provide a name for your app and add an Android package name. OneSignal does not use Android package name, but it is a required field.

Next, choose your country and region, then click on the ‘Choose and configure services’ button.

This will bring you to the next screen where you will be asked to select Google services you want to use with your app. You need to click on ‘Enable Google Cloud Messaging’ button.

Enable cloud messaging

You will now see your server API key and Sender ID.

Server API and Sender ID

You need to copy your Sender ID and paste it in WordPress plugin’s Configuration tab under Google Project Number field.

You also need to copy your Server API key and paste it in a text file on your computer. You will need this API key later in this tutorial.

Step 2: Setting up Chrome and Firefox Push Notifications

We will now setup push notifications on Chrome and Firefox. First you need to visit OneSignal website and create your free account.

Once you have created your account, you need to login and click on ‘Add a new app’ button.

Add new OneSignal app

You will be asked to enter a name for your app. You can use any name you want and then click on ‘Create’ button to continue.

App name

On the next page, you will be asked to select a platform to configure. You need to select ‘Website Push’ and then click on the next button to continue.

Website Push

After which you will be asked to select browser platform. You will see Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox in one box and Safari in another box.

You need to click on Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox box. We will show you how to setup Safari, later in this article.

Select browser platform

Click on the next button to continue.

In the next step, you will be asked to enter your WordPress site url, Google Server API key, and URL for your default notification icon image.

App settings

If your website does not support SSL/HTTPS, then you need to check the box next to ‘My site is not fully HTTPS’ option. You can also setup SSL on your website if you like, but it’s not required.

Google Chrome does not support web push notifications for non-ssl or http websites. OneSignal solves this problem by subscribing users to a subdomain on their own https domain.

Checking ‘My site is not fully HTTPS’ option will display HTTP fallback options. You will need to choose a subdomain for your app and enter Google Project Number or Sender ID you generated in the first step.

http fallback options

Click on the Save button to continue. Now you can exit this dialog box. You will be prompted with a notice that your setup isn’t complete yet and can be resumed later. Click Yes to close the dialog box.

Step 3: Getting OneSignal Keys

You now need to get OneSignal Keys for your website. From your app dashboard click on App Settings.

App Settings link

This will take you to your app settings page. You need to click on the Keys and IDs tab.

Keys and IDs

This will show your OneSignal App ID and Rest API Key.

App ID and Rest API Key

You need to copy and paste them in OneSignal WordPress plugin’s configuration tab on your site.

Step 4: Setting up Safari Web Push Notifications

Remember we skipped Safari web push notification settings. Now we will show you how to setup Safari web push notifications.

Login to your OneSignal account and go to your App Settings page. Scroll down to web platforms and click on the configure button next to Apple Safari.

Configure Apple Safari

This will bring up a dialog box where you will be asked to enter your site name and site url.

Safari web push notification settings

Then you need to check the box next to ‘I’d like to upload my own notification icons’ option.

You will now see an option to upload different icon sizes. These are square images, use Photoshop or any image editing program to create icons in the exact sizes.

Click on choose file buttons to upload all your icons.

Upload notification icons for Safari web push notification

Click on the Save button and then close the dialog box.

Refresh the App Settings page and scroll down to Web Platforms section. This time you will see ‘Web ID’ under Apple Safari.

Safari web ID

You need to copy this web ID and paste it in Configuration tab of OneSignal plugin on your site.

That’s all, you have successfully setup OneSignal web push notifications for your WordPress site.

Step 5: Testing Web Push Notifications on Your WordPress Site

By default, OneSignal plugin will add a subscription icon to your WordPress site. Visit your website in a supported browser and then click on the subscribe button.

Subscribe push notifications button

You will see the default ‘thank you for subscribing’ message.

Now login to OneSignal account. Click on your app name, and then on App Settings.

Scroll down to the web platforms section and click on the configure button next to Google Chrome and Firefox.

Configure web push notifications for Chrome and Firefox

You will see the platform configuration screen which you filled in earlier. Simply click on Save button and then click on Continue.

testing web push notifications

You will be asked to select target SDK. You need to select WordPress and then click on Next.

Select WordPress

Since you only have one subscriber at the moment your subscriber ID will be automatically filled.

Click on the next button, and you will reach the ‘Test Settings’ step.

Click on ‘Send Test Notification’ button.

Send test notification

One Signal will now send a web push notification.

The notifications appearance may differ depending on which browser you used to subscribe. When the notification appears on your computer screen you need to click on it.

Test notification

It will take you to confirmation screen, showing that you have successfully setup OneSignal web push notifications for your website.

Success message

Return back to the configure screen on OneSignal website and click on ‘Check Notification Status‘ button.

Check notification status

You will now see another success message which indicates that you have successfully added web push notifications to your WordPress site.

How to Send Web Push Notifications in WordPress with OneSignal

The OneSignal web push notifications plugin on your WordPress site will automatically send a notification to all subscribers when you publish a new post.

You can also manually send notifications from your OneSignal App Dashboard. Login to your OneSignal account and click on your app name.

From the menu on your left, click on the ‘New Message’ button.

Sending a new web push notification message

This will bring you to the new message screen. You can enter a title and some content for your notification.

Write your new push notification message in OneSignal

You can also click on the Options, Segment, Schedule/Send Later to further customize your web push notification.

For example, you can link it to a particular page on your site, send it to a particular segment of your users, or schedule it to be sent at a specific time.

We hope this article helped you add web push notification your WordPress site. You may also want to see our list of the best membership plugins for WordPress.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

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Basics of Inspect Element: Customizing WordPress for DIY Users

Have you ever wanted to temporarily edit a webpage to see how it would look with specific colors, fonts, styling, etc. It’s possible with a tool that already exists in your browser called Inspect Element. This is a dream come true for all DIY users when they find out about it. In this article, we will show you the basics of inspect element and how to use it with your WordPress site.

WordPress beginner's guide to using Inspect tool in Google Chrome

What is Inspect Element or Developer Tools?

Modern web browsers like Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox has built-in tools which allow web developers to debug errors. These tools show the HTML, CSS, and JavaScript code for a page and how the browser executes the code.

Using Inspect Element tool, you can edit HTML, CSS, or JavaSCript code for any webpage and see your changes live (only on your computer).

For a DIY website owner, these tools can help you preview how a site design would look without actually making the changes for everyone.

For writers, these tools are awesome because you can easily change personal identifying information when taking your screenshots eliminating the need to blur out items altogether.

For support agents, it’s a great way to identify the error that could be causing your galleries to not load or your sliders to not work properly.

We’re just scratching the surface of use-cases. Inspect element is really powerful.

In this article, we will be focusing on Inspect Element in Google Chrome because that’s our browser of choice. Firefox has its own developer tools which can also be invoked by selecting inspect element from browser menu.

Ready? Let’s get started.

Video Tutorial

If you don’t like the video or need more instructions, then continue reading.

Launching Inspect Element and Locating The Code

You can launch inspect element tool by pressing CTRL + Shift + I keys on your keyboard. Alternately you can click anywhere on a web page and select inspect element from browser menu.

Inspect menu

Your browser window will split into two, and the lower window will show the web page’s source code.

The developer tool window is further divided into two windows. On your left, you will see the HTML code for the page. On the right-hand pane, you will see the CSS rules.

HTML and CSS Panes in Inspect window

As you move your mouse over the HTML source you will see the affected area highlighted on the web page. You will also notice CSS rules change to show the CSS for the element you are viewing.

Editing a particular HTML element

You can also take the mouse pointer to an element on the web page, right click and select inspect element. The element you pointed at will be highlighted in the source code.

Editing and Debugging Code in Inspect Element

Both the HTML and CSS in the inspect element window are editable. You can double click anywhere in the HTML source code and edit the code as you like.

Editing HTML code in inspect element tool

You can also double click and edit any attributes and styles in the CSS pane. To add a custom style rule click on the + icon at the top of CSS pane.

Editing CSS in the inspect element tool

As you make changes to the CSS or HTML those changes will be reflected in the browser instantly.

Live CSS changes in the browser screen

Note, that any changes you make here are not saved anywhere. Inspect element is a debugging tool, and it does not write your changes back to the files on your server. This means that if you refresh the page, all your changes will be gone.

To actually make the changes, you will have to edit your WordPress theme’s stylesheet or relevant template to add the changes you want to save.

Before you start editing your existing WordPress theme using Inspect Element tool, make sure you that you save all your changes by creating a child theme.

Easily Find Errors On Your Site

Inspect element has an area called Console which shows all the errors that exist on your website. When trying to debug an error or requesting support from plugin authors, it’s always helpful to look here to see what the errors are.

Browser Console Error

For example, if you were an OptinMonster customer wondering why your optin is not loading, then you can easily find the problem “your page slug does not match”.

If your sharebar wasn’t working properly, then you can see that there’s a JavaScript error.

Tools like the Inspect Element Console and SupportAlly help you get better customer support because the technical support team love customers who take initiative in providing detailed feedback of the issue.

We hope this article helped you learn the basics of inspect element and how to use it with your WordPres site. You may also want to take a look at the default WordPress generated CSS cheat sheet to speed up your theme development skills.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Google+.

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WordPress 4.7 Development Kicks Off This Week

WordPress 4.7 development officially kicked off at today’s meeting in the #core Slack channel. This release is being led by lead developer Helen Hou-Sandí who has selected Aaron Jorbin and Jeff Paul as release deputies.

The first item on the agenda was an update on the upcoming 4.6.1 maintenance release. Jeremy Felt reported that the team managing the release set a schedule with a release candidate planned for September 1 and the official release on September 7.

New Default Theme (Twenty Seventeen) Under Consideration

Hou-Sandí opened the meeting with discussion on potential focus areas for 4.7. As this is the last release for 2016, many are wondering if a new default theme (Twenty Seventeen) will be included in the release.

“I am looking into this, and there is some promise out there,” Hou-Sandí said. “I know there have been a lot of questions in the past around why it hasn’t been a public process starting with design, and beyond the difficulties of design-by-committee, I am coming at this a bit late and cannot possibly start a raw process and have that finish within the next two months.”

She said she is working on having a definitive answer within the next week or two on whether a new default theme will be in the works.

Contributors Discuss a Roadmap for Getting WP REST API Endpoints Into WordPress 4.7

Hou-Sandí also addressed the possibility of getting the WP REST API endpionts committed to core during 4.7, a topic of great interest to the WordPress developer community.

“I am here to do everything I can to help with a proposed next step for 4.7, which would be content endpoints,” she said. Although getting the endpoints into core is not a guarantee, it’s a goal for which Hou-Sandí is willing to create a roadmap, with the help of contributors. The roadmap would provide an outline for what it would take to make it happen for 4.7, as well as a roadmap for “full management and admin API coverage.”

“The premise here is that content endpoints (posts, terms, comment, users, and their associated meta) represent the majority of use cases for the REST API,” Hou-Sandí said. “v2 of the plugin represents the non-meta endpoints, and has picked up in adoption, with I believe around 32k active installs. A lot of people and plugins roll their own endpoints as well, which are harder to detect, but some widely used plugins like WooCommerce can also be thought of indicative of REST API usage.”

Hou-Sandí identified a few important items that would give the WP REST API a good chance for success, including rigorous testing with 4.6 and trunk, resolution of remaining “quirky” issues such as password-protected posts, support for meta and options, a plan for forward compatibility, and security reviews from experts both inside and outside the WordPress community. She opened up the floor for more input on contributor availability and steps to making the project a success.

If the WP REST API endpoints are to make it into 4.7, contributors will need to be on board for tackling a sizable roadmap in just nine weeks before the first beta. Those in attendance at the meeting were enthusiastic and willing to make the final push. The team will meet next Monday in the #core-restapi channel to discuss a possible roadmap.

4.7 Wishlist Items: Better Organization for Media, Improved Theme Setup Experience, Improved Customizer Usability

The 4.7 wishlist items post already has dozens of ideas, most of which also have comments and engagement. The post is still open for feedback. After the dev chat, Hou-Sandí opened the floor for contributors to discuss areas of focus, which she said should be “specific enough to be actionable and mappable.”

Better organization for the WordPress media library is one common theme among the wishlist items. This includes improvements such as the ability to tag media items and search by file name.

Customizer component co-maintainer Nick Halsey said that he and others are working on eliminating usability dead ends in the customizer, which would include adding content authorship to navigation menus and allowing users to install themes directly in the customizer.

Hou-Sandí is also interested in improving the initial theme setup experience in 4.7 and recently posted about the problems she encountered and how core contributors can work on improving the experience.

The target date for WordPress 4.7 is December 6, which means the release should drop shortly after WordCamp US in Philadelphia. Beta 1 is expected October 26 and a release candidate is targeted for mid-November.

How to Delay Posts From Appearing in WordPress RSS Feed

Recently, one of our readers asked if it’s possible to delay posts from appearing in the WordPress RSS feed? Delaying posts in your RSS feed can save you from accidental publishing and beat content scrapers in SEO. In this article, we will show you how to delay post from appearing in WordPress RSS feed.

How to Delay Posts From Appearing in WordPress RSS Feed

Why Delay Feed in WordPress?

Sometimes you may end up with a grammar or spelling mistake in your article. The mistake goes live and is distributed to your RSS feed subscribers. If you have email subscriptions on your WordPress blog, then those subscribers will get it as well.

Spelling mistakes go live to your RSS feed subscribers

By adding a delay between your RSS feed and your live site, you get a little time window to catch an error on a live site and fix it.

RSS feeds are also used by content scraping websites. They use it to monitor your content and copy your posts as soon as they appear live.

If you have a new website with little authority, then a lot of times these content scrapers may end up beating you in the search results.

Content scrapers use RSS feeds to auto-publish your posts

By delaying an article in the feed, you can give search engines enough time to crawl and index your content first.

Having said that, let’s see how to easily delay posts from appearing in WordPress RSS feed.

Delaying Posts in WordPress RSS Feed

This method requires you to add little code into WordPress. If this is your first time adding code manually, then take a look at our beginner’s guide on pasting snippets from web into WordPress.

You need to add the following code to your theme’s functions.php file or in a site-specific plugin.

function publish_later_on_feed($where) {

	global $wpdb;

	if ( is_feed() ) {
		// timestamp in WP-format
		$now = gmdate('Y-m-d H:i:s');

		// value for wait; + device
		$wait = '10'; // integer

		// http://dev.mysql.com/doc/refman/5.0/en/date-and-time-functions.html#function_timestampdiff
		$device = 'MINUTE'; //MINUTE, HOUR, DAY, WEEK, MONTH, YEAR

		// add SQL-sytax to default $where
		$where .= " AND TIMESTAMPDIFF($device, $wpdb->posts.post_date_gmt, '$now') > $wait ";
	}
	return $where;
}

add_filter('posts_where', 'publish_later_on_feed');

This code checks to see if a WordPress feed is requested. After that it sets the current time and the time you want to add as delay between post’s original date and the current time.

After that it adds the timestamp difference as the WHERE clause to the original query. The original query will now only return the posts where timestamp difference is greater than the wait time.

In this code we have used 10 minutes as $wait or delay time. Feel free to change that into any number of minutes you want. For example, 60 for 1 hour or 120 for two hours.

We hope this article helped you learn how to easily delay posts from appearing in WordPress RSS feed. You may also want to see our guide on how to show content only to RSS subscribers in WordPress.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

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Polyglots Team Experiences Record Annual Growth, Expands WordPress’ Reach to Millions with New Translations

polyglots-wapuu

WordPress 4.6 was released this week with support for 50 translations at 100%, a record number for the Polyglots. The volunteer team has grown 114% over the past year and a half.

“On April 15th, translation contributors totaled 4,690 for all time, with a rate of 3 new per day,” Polyglots team member Petya Raykovska said. “We had 319 translation editor badges when we first introduced them in March 2015.”

As of August 2016, the total number of people who have contributed to WordPress translations is 10,059, with 1,247 translation editors (those who maintain translations for a single plugin or theme).

Raykovska cannot explain why the Polyglots team has caught fire during the past year, but she attributes some of the growth to the magnetism of the team.

“We are getting better at working as a team and helping each other,” she said. “I am almost tempted to say people can feel how much we enjoy the work that we do for the project and want to become a part of all that.”

Raykovska said during the past year Polyglots have focused on helping established teams improve the quality of their work, creating style sheets and glossaries to help new contributors ease into the process and attract as many Project Translation Editors as possible. They have also worked diligently to find new or additional maintainers for languages that are a bit behind.

Although WordPress translators are not listed among the WordPress release credits, they are credited in the localized About pages for their languages. Listing all of the translators in the release post would be challenging, due to the sheer number of people who have made it possible to have WordPress in other languages. For example, take a look at how many volunteers it takes to bring languages like Hindi or Italian to 100%.

“What was funny is that the first mention of translators was in relation to translating the release video, which is a 10-minute work compared to the hours people put into translating the actual software,” Raykovska said.

“So as our relationship with the core team has become stronger – and I think it’s improved greatly in the last couple of releases – the mention of the translation efforts has also changed.”

WordPress is Now Fully Translated Into Gujarati

One of the key areas of growth in the Polyglots team has taken place in India, where volunteers are organizing meetups for translating Hindi, Marathi, and Gujarati. During the past release, the Gujarati team brought the local from 60% to 100% complete in just one week.

“That means translating more than 2000 strings in a week,” Raykovska said. “And those are the administration and network admin strings, the hardest ones.”

WordPress 4.6 is the first release to offer WordPress in Gujarati, an Indian language with approximately 65.5 million speakers worldwide. Having WordPress available in Gujarati opens up the software to a whole new segment of the world.

Rahul Bansal, founder of rtCamp, hosted the most recent meetup where the push to finish the Gujarati translation began. He said it was the first meetup and first contribution experience for most of the 31 attendees.

“Many first-time contributors got so motivated that they did not stop after the meetup ended,” Bansal said. “The Gujarati language was at 60% when the meetup started. During the meetup we finished an additional 10%, but many translators used their three-day weekend and some office hours to finish it to 100%.”

Chandra Patel is one contributor in particular who was instrumental in helping the team reach their goal in under a week.

“Gujarati is my native language,” he said. “So it always feels good to stay connected with it and WordPress gave me that opportunity.”

Bansal said he received pings from other Indian language speakers who showed interest in completing a translation for their native languages, including Punjabi and Marwadi.

“We will be having such sprints more often and are planning to extend it to other areas,” Bansal said. “People are motivated and eager to contribute now.”

Bansal said he started looking at translation as a requirement for accessibility after attending WordCamp Europe this year.

“I had a tough time in Europe as I could only speak English,” Bansal said. “So at many times I felt illiterate and was constantly looking around for help.”

When asked what it means to him to have WordPress in his native language, Bansal said that although he uses it in English, he is excited for his Gujarati-speaking family.

“I have many family members and relatives who can’t speak or read English,” he said. “I see an opportunity for them to start using WordPress and start writing online.”

The Gujarati translation reaching 100% is just one example of how the Polyglots team is making it possible for WordPress usage to expand to new areas of the world. The team is currently working to improve their tools so they can work more efficiently together.

“We don’t have an automated system to update General Translation Editors when new strings are available for translation, so a lot of people took to Slack to chat to GTEs responsible for locales that were close to 100%,” Raykovska said. “So many of them responded and finished the translations on time.”

Raykovska said an automated system for this is on the roadmap but the Polyglots will need to wait for the meta team to have time for the project.

“There has been a short list of priorities for us for the past two years, but the meta team is tiny and is catering to the whole ecosystem, not just Polyglots,” she said. “So we’re trying to be patient, help out, and figure out ways for things to work while the features are being built.”

In the meantime, Polyglots has made improvements in other areas, including Slack integrations and external tools. They are also working on a redesign of the translation interface and new O2 instances for local sites so translation teams can communicate better with new contributors. The Polyglots team has a great deal of momentum right now as they continue making WordPress accessible in more of world’s languages. If you’re inspired by their progress and want to join, check out the Polyglots’ Handbook for more information.

New WordPress plugin: Citation Importer

The WordPress Citation Importer plugin imports individual citations, bibliography lists, or lists of DOIs into WordPress via the CrossRef Metadata API. Using a publication post type and/or a few custom fields, you could build a local database of publications for your company, university, library, etc. without having to manually enter each field.

How it works

1. Enter citations into the editor and select which post type should be the destination.

WordPress Citation Importer screen 1: text entry

2. See if crossref.org‘s API found the correct publication(s). (The importer returns only the first match for each citation.) If not, you can run your own search to find the correct DOIs and enter them into the previous screen.

WordPress Citation Importer screen 2: confirm search matches to import

WordPress Citation Importer screen 3: review imported posts

3. Edit the imported data as needed. It will not be refreshed from crossref.org again after the initial import, so your corrections here will stick.

Editing the imported publication

Filters

Your WordPress custom fields and taxonomies likely do not match those used by this importer. Therefore, the post fields, custom fields, and taxonomies are all filterable.

Post fields

Standard post fields (post_title, post_content, post_status, etc.) are stored in the $post array. The original data received from crossref.org is passed to you in the $item object.

apply_filters( 'citation_importer_postdata', $post, $item );

Custom fields

Custom fields are given in the $fields associative array, with the meta_key used as the array key and the meta_value as the value. The $post array contains the standard post fields, and the $item object contains the crossref.org data.

apply_filters( 'citation_importer_fielddata', $fields, $post, $item );

Taxonomies

Custom taxonomies are set in the $terms associative array, with the taxonomy name used as the array key and the term slug (or array of slugs) as the value. The $post array contains the standard post fields, and the $item object contains the crossref.org data.

apply_filters( 'citation_importer_termdata', $terms, $post, $item );

Example Filter Function

Here’s an example of a function that splits the source publication’s volume and issue into separate fields (instead of appending them to the title) and adds a field for the page numbers.

Running the importer with the above plugin activated (and the new fields defined in ACF), the publication pictured above now looks like this:

Screenshot of a WordPress editing screen showing the new, separate fields for the publication's volume, issue, and page numbers

You could use the filters to split the authors into separate fields, access the various parsed dates, or import more data from the search results (like the ISSN or alternative ID). Visit any record on crossref.org and view its data as JSON to see all the available fields.

More about CrossRef

The CrossRef Metadata API is an amazing tool for matching formatted citations with their parsed equivalents in a central database.

CrossRef’s Metadata API does not yet include abstracts. You may be able to locate them fairly easily with the DOIs in hand; see this GitHub issue for details. When abstracts become available in the API’s response, they will be added to the plugin’s post data.

Download, donate, contribute

This plugin is available for download on wordpress.org, but it’s also a work in progress, and you can contribute on GitHub.

Want to fund further development? Donate via PayPal.

Facebook Changed Sharing Counts

Today, Facebook released version 2.7 of their API and changed the manner in which shared posts are counted.

That would have been okay, except they also turned off the part of the 1.0 API (the one that didn’t use versions in their URLs because who needed that?) and blindsided everyone. Reading the Facebook Dev Changelog didn’t make that any more sensible to me either. But what I can tell you is here are some affected plugins/services:

Anyone who has a plugin (or theme) with sharing buttons that count MAY be affected. If someone can come up with a way to scan the repository for impacted plugins, let me know and I’ll be happy to do that and email as many of them directly as we can.

WordPress 4.6 “Pepper” Released, Streamlines Plugin and Theme Management

PepperAdamsFeaturedImage
Photo of Pepper Adams taken by Abdulx999

WordPress 4.6 “Pepper” is now available and is named after Pepper Adams who played the Baritone saxophone and the clarinet. This release doesn’t have any jaw-dropping features, but rather a collection of incremental improvements.

Managing Plugins and Themes is Faster

Building on the work introduced in WordPress 4.2, this release makes updating, installing, and deleting plugins and themes even faster. Gone are the days of watching a progress screen each time you install a plugin or theme.

Native System Fonts

One of the most striking changes users will notice is the switch from Open Sans to native system fonts. Open Sans was used at a time when the choices for fonts were small. Over time, native fonts have dramatically improved on modern devices.

Using native fonts not only increases WordPress’ performance, it also gives it a consistent look and feel. Developers are encouraged to note the specific changes to the font-stack and update accordingly.

Firefox on Windows using Segoe UI Font
Firefox on Windows using Segoe UI Font

Automatically Detects if a URL Has the Correct Syntax

WordPress 4.6 will automatically detect if a link contains the correct syntax. If a link is malformed, a red dotted outline is displayed. It’s important to note that the URL checker only works if you insert links via the button as pasting a URL onto text bypasses the check.

broken-link-checker

Improved Disaster Recovery Mode

By default, WordPress saves the post title, content, and excerpt in the browser every 15 seconds on the edit post screen and prior to submitting the form. Since content in the browser is newer, WordPress 4.6 will recover it first before resorting to an auto save.

Other Noteworthy Updates Include:

This release was led by Dominik Schilling, with Garth Mortensen as the Release Deputy. There are 272 individuals who contributed to WordPress 4.6. If you run into any issues or think you’ve discovered a bug, you can report it on the WordPress.org support forums where volunteers are ready to help.

Listen to Pepper Adams While You Update

While updating your sites, listen to Pepper Adams as he plays “Once Around” at the Jazz Festival in Montreux, Switzerland in 1974.

How to Allow Users to Subscribe to Authors in WordPress

Have you ever wanted to allow users to subscribe to specific authors in WordPress? If you run a multi-author WordPress site, then your users may want to subscribe to their favorite author. In this article, we will show you how to allow users to subscribe to individual authors in WordPress.

Subscribe to author

Why Add Subscribe to Authors in WordPress?

Most large multi-author blogs like Huffington Post allow users to follow their favorite authors. You can offer this feature in your multi-author WordPress site as well.

WordPress generates RSS feeds for all authors, categories, tags, custom post types, and comments on your site. However, your users can’t see these feeds link without knowing where to look.

As a site owner, you just need to add links and subscription options so that users can subscribe to authors.

Having said that, let’s take a look at how to allow users to easily subscribe to authors in WordPress.

Adding Subscribe to Authors Feature in WordPress

All the authors on your WordPress site have an RSS feed of their own. This RSS feed is located at a URL like this:

http://www.example.com/author/tom/feed/

Don’t forget to replace ‘tom’ with an existing author’s name on your site.

Many WordPress themes come with a section that displays author’s biographical information at the end of the article. You can add this HTML code in an author’s bio section to display a link to their RSS feed.

<a href="http://www.example.com/author/tom/feed">Subcribe Tom's Posts</a>

Adding a subscribe to author link in author bio section

You can also automatically generate the link and use a shortcode to manually insert it into posts.

First you need to add this code to your theme’s functions.php file or a site-specific plugin.


// Function to generate author's RSS feed link

function wpb_author_feed() {

$authorfeed =  get_author_feed_link( get_the_author_id(), ''); 

$authorfeedlink = '<a href='. $authorfeed . '>Subscribe to get more posts from ' . get_the_author_meta( 'display_name') .''  ;

return $authorfeedlink;

} 
// Create a shortcode to display the link
add_shortcode('authorfeed', 'wpb_author_feed');

// Enable shortcode execution in WordPress text widgets
add_filter('widget_text', 'do_shortcode');

You can now just use the shortcode [authorfeed] in your posts, and it will automatically generate a link to the post author’s RSS feed. Feel free to customize the text you want to display for the link.

Subscribe to author link

Add a Subscribe to Author Link in the Sidebar

We will be using the shortcode method we showed above to display a subscribe to author link in the sidebar of your WordPress blog. Simply go to Appearance » Widgets page and add a text widget to your sidebar.

Adding subscribe to author link in WordPress sidebar widget

You will need to add [authorfeed] shortcode in the text area of the widget. After that, don’t forget to click on the save button to store widget settings.

You can now visit your website to see the sidebar in action.

The problem with this method is that it will display the widget on every page including the homepage, category, and tag archives, etc.

You need to install and activate the Display Widgets plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, you need to visit the Widgets page and edit the author’s feed widget you added earlier.

Display widget rules

You will notice new options to control widget display on different pages of your site. Now you need to select ‘Show on checked pages’, and then check the single post option.

Don’t forget to click on the save button to store your widget settings.

That’s all you can now visit your website to see your author subscription link in action. You can use a little CSS to create a button, or add an image icon as the subscription.

We hope this article helped you learn how to allow users to subscribe to authors in WordPress. You may also want to see our guide on how to fix most common RSS feed errors in WordPress.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The post How to Allow Users to Subscribe to Authors in WordPress appeared first on WPBeginner.

How to Properly Move from Medium to WordPress

After reading our WordPress vs Medium comparison, several readers asked us to how to move from Medium to WordPress. In case you were looking to switch from Medium to WordPress, this step by step guide will help you learn how to properly move from Medium to WordPress.

Moving from Medium to WordPress

Before we start, here is a breakdown of all the steps that we will be covering in our Medium to WordPress migration guide:

  1. Install and Setup WordPress
  2. Export your Medium stories
  3. Import Medium stories into WordPress
  4. Import Images from Medium to WordPress
  5. Setup redirects (If you have a custom domain on Medium)

Step 1. Install and Setup WordPress

Unlike Medium, WordPress is a self-hosted platform. This means that you own and control every aspect of your website.

The first thing you need to do is install and setup WordPress.

You will need a domain name and web hosting for WordPress.

We recommend using either Bluehost or SiteGround because both are official WordPress recommended hosting partners and are rated best WordPress hosting providers by WPBeginner.

Both of these providers understand beginners needs that’s why they are offering WPBeginner users an exclusive 60% discount as well as a free domain name.

After signing up for hosting, you will need to install WordPress. We have a complete step-by-step WordPress installation tutorial.

Once you have installed and setup WordPress, you’re ready to migrate your content to WordPress.

Step 2. Exporting Your Data from Medium

Medium is an innovative publishing platform with many features that help you easily publish your stories. However, when it comes to taking away your data, currently they don’t have the best tools for it.

With the help of this tutorial, you will be able to move your articles from Medium to your WordPress website. However, you will not be able to import your followers, likes, and responses to your articles.

If you have a custom domain setup on Medium, then you might be able to manually setup redirects from your Medium publication to your WordPress site. However, you will have to do it manually for each article.

Having said that, let’s look at how to export your data from Medium.

Login to your Medium account and then click on your profile picture at the top right corner of the screen.

Medium account settings

From the fly down menu, click on the ‘Settings’ link to access your Medium account settings page.

You need to scroll down a little to the ‘Export Content’ section and then click on the Download zip button.

Export medium content

This will bring you to the export content page. You need to click on the Export button. Medium will then prepare a zip file with your articles and email you the link to download it.

Prepare the export zip file

This email can take a while, so periodically check your inbox for an email from Medium. Inside the email message, you will see a link to download your export file.

Email message with a link to download Medium export file

Go ahead and download the zip file to your computer and then extract it.

Inside the extracted folder, you will find your Medium articles in plain HTML format, you will also find an XML file called medium.rss.

You are now all set to import your content into your WordPress site.

Step 3. Importing Your Medium Articles into WordPress

First, you need to visit Tools » Import page and click on RSS link.

Import Medium RSS backup into WordPress

This will bring up a popup to install the RSS Importer plugin. You need to click on the Install Now button to continue.

Install importer

WordPress will now download and install the RSS Importer plugin on your website. You need to click on ‘Activate plugin and run importer’ link to continue.

Activate and run importer

On the next screen, you need to click on the choose file button and select the medium.rss file from your computer.

Click on ‘Upload file and import’ button to continue.

Upload Medium import file into WordPress importer

WordPress will now upload medium.rss file and import your articles. Upon success, you will see the number of articles imported as posts with an ‘All done. Have fun’ message at the end.

That’s all, you have successfully imported your content from Medium to WordPress.

Step 4. Importing Your Images From Medium to WordPress

The RSS Importer will not be able to import images from your Medium stories into the WordPress media library. Those images will still be visible, but they will be loaded from Medium servers.

We recommend that you import those images into your WordPress media library. To do this, you will need to use a WordPress plugin called Import External Images.

Watch the video below:

Alternatively, you can follow the text instructions in our guide on how to import external images into WordPress.

Step 5. Setting Up Redirects for Custom Domain

If your Medium stories had a medium.com URL, then you cannot setup redirects.

If you were using a custom domain for your Medium publication, then you can setup custom redirects in WordPress.

First you will need to get all URLs of all your Medium articles and save them to a text file. After that you need to start setting up redirects for all your articles.

There are multiple ways to setup redirects in WordPress. You can follow the instructions in our beginner’s guide to creating redirects in WordPress for detailed instructions.

That’s all, we hope this article helped you properly move from Medium to WordPress. You may also want to see our list of 40 useful tools to manage and grow your WordPress blog

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The post How to Properly Move from Medium to WordPress appeared first on WPBeginner.

Blog post checklist

What do you need to write that awesome blog post? What steps do you need to take? Use this blog post checklist to make sure you covered everything:

1. Do your keyword research!

You want your blog post to rank in the search engines. Make sure you write your blog post on a topic that will help your SEO strategy. Always start with keyword research. Read our ultimate guide on keyword research for more information!

2. Prepare your blog post!

All writing begins with preparation. You should think about what you want to say and to whom you want to say it. It is important to realize, that proper writing takes some preparation.

It pays off to think about the structure of your piece before you start writing. The structure is the skeleton of your text: it will help the reader grasp the main idea of your text.

Read more: ‘Preparing your blog post’ »

3. Start writing!

If you carefully prepared your blog post, it is time to start writing. Writing can be hard. Make sure you put your pen down on paper (or fingers on the keyboard) and construct those sentences. If you carefully prepared your post, it won’t be too hard. Don’t mind spelling or typos too much in this phase. That could take you out of the writing flow.

Content SEO: learn how to do keyword research, how to structure your site and how to write SEO friendly content

Content SEO

4. Check your readability bullets

Once you have written your first draft, it is time to correct all of those misspells and typos. You should carefully read and re-read your blog post and make sure that your sentences are all phrased as beautifully as possible.

Your blog post should be well readable. Use the readability scores Yoast SEO provides. Our content analysis will allow you to detect those long sentences and passive voice if you tend to use those too often.

Keep reading: ‘5 tips to write readable blogposts’ »

5. Check your SEO bullets

If you have created a great blog post, you want it to rank in the search engines. If you started with proper keyword research, your blog post would be about a keyword that is beneficial to your SEO strategy. Use the SEO analysis of Yoast SEO to check whether you did all the things you can do to make sure your article is SEO-friendly.

6. Hit publish!

The final step in this blog post checklist is to hit that publish button. Make sure you share your blog post on social media too. Social media are a necessity for the growth and marketing of your website. It depends on your (desired) audience and on your content which social media are best suited for your website.

Read on: ‘SEO copywriting checklist’ »

Conclusion to the blog post checklist

Every blog post should start with executing keyword research. Make sure you take some time to prepare your blog post carefully. And after you have written the post, use Yoast SEO to check readability and SEO. That’ll allow you to publish an awesome blog post. Good luck!

 

Stop Ruining the WP Admin Area

I guess what I was trying to get at with my previous poll about too many plugins was the idea that a lot of WordPress sites that I see these days are just absolutely trashed in the Admin Area due to inconsiderate, poorly planned plugins and themes. For users, a few wrong turns when choosing plugins can leave the streamlined, easy-to-use Admin Area an absolute mess of annoying ads and discordant design. So this DigWP post is encouragement for plugin and theme developers to please STOP ruining the WordPress experience with aggressive marketing tactics, endless nagging, and other obtrusive nonsense.

(more…)

WordPress 4.6 Will Detect Broken Links in the Editor

WordPress 4.6 is set to introduce a broken link checker in the editor, a handy new feature which lead developer Andrew Ozz dubbed “spellcheck for URLs.” Ella Van Dorpe, who is co-maintainer with Ozz on WordPress’ editor component, opened a ticket three months ago to begin work on detecting broken URLs. She proposed that bad links could be shown with a message in the toolbar in order to prevent accidental user mistakes when entering links.

After working through various approaches for detecting broken links, contributors on the feature settled on having WordPress test if the link is well formed. Users can instantly see when a link they have added is broken, as it will appear linked in red in the link tooltip.

broken-link-checker

The broken link checker is also accessibility friendly and uses wp.a11y.speak() to announce bad URLs with an audible warning message.

“This is the logical next step for enhancing how we handle links (and URLs in general) in the editor,” Ozz said.

Broken links are essentially dead ends, and the new link checker helps prevent WordPress content authors from accidentally contributing to link rot, a growing problem on the web. The feature is available in the visual editor and there are two weeks remaining to test. WordPress 4.6 RC 1 was released last week and the official release is expected the week of August 16.

Status on the Plugin Repo Revamp, Guidelines, and Handbooks

First off, please read Obenland’s post on the repo:

Plugin Directory v3: Next Steps

Obviously we have a long way to go.

As for the Guidelines, I wanted to be done and ready to release them to everyone before 4.6 dropped, but I’ve been using small focus groups at WordCamps first. This resulted in a lot of small changes that I want to take the time to go over with the Plugin Team before I unleash it to the world for nitpicking. A huge amount of thanks goes to @courtneydawn @logankipp and @lunacodes for being my first run of editors!

As we clean up the aftermath of the 4.6 emails (you have no idea…), I’ll be pinging people whom I know to be good copyeditors and have mentioned wanting to help before. If you think that’s you, please leave a comment here. I won’t be asking everyone as I’ve found that to be overwhelming for me to be able to process, so please don’t take it personally. Once I have it mostly good, I’ll flip it from Google Docs to a Git Repo and people can pull request!

Also a handbook! Oh me oh my I’ve been writing one! And I’m almost ready to ask Sam to flip the switch for it. It’s sparse and will need lots of attention too.

Thank you everyone for understanding the crazy that goes on with all this, and for being patient. It’s been a long 7 months for me working on all this.

Reminder: WordPress 4.6 is imminent. Are your plugins ready? (also make sure your email is valid)

The email went out last night to everyone with commit access to a plugin.

After testing your plugins and ensuring compatibility, it only takes a few moments to change the readme “Tested up to:” value to 4.6. This information provides peace of mind to users and helps encourage them to update to the latest version.

For each plugin that is compatible, you don’t need to release a new version — just change the stable version’s readme value.

Looking to get more familiar with 4.6? Read this roundup post on the core development blog to check out the changes made to register_meta(), native fonts, persistent comment cache, Customizer APIs, WP_HTTP API, and much, much more: https://make.wordpress.org/core/2016/07/26/wordpress-4-6-field-guide/

Thank you for all you do for the WordPress community, and we hope you enjoy 4.6 as much as we do.

Also, as we’ve been warning for the last two cycles, some plugins have been closed. It’s a requirement that we be able to contact you. We’ve also been pushing back on auto-replies, since they make it impossible for us to tell if there’s a human reading. Frankly, based on the content of the auto-replies, this is the cycle we see:

We email you and receive an auto reply of “A support ticket has been created…” We email a warning “Hey, please remove us from this auto reply…” and we get another auto reply. We don’t reply to that one, but 3 months later when we send another email, the cycle starts anew. This tells us that you are not actually reading your support emails. Which means we have no way to contact you (and your users probably hate you, just FYI). So this time, plugins have been closed.

Your plugin has been closed (or you were removed from a plugin) based on the following criteria:

  • If you have auto-replied to our ‘Are your plugin ready?’ email 4+ times, and your plugin has not been updated in 2+ years
  • If your email bounced
  • If your auto-reply says “I’m on vacation until…” and it’s a invalid future date (example: someone’s out of office said they’d be back August 2014…)
  • If your auto-reply said you no longer work at a company
  • If your auto-reply says the company no longer exists

If the only valid emails for the plugin meet those criteria, the plugin was closed. If it was only one committer, they were removed and everyone else was emailed and notified.

In all cases we absolutely emailed each and every one of you. I did it myself. I directly contacted over 80 plugins about this situation and expressly told them if their plugins were closed or if people were removed, and why.

If you find your plugin was closed and you didn’t get an email, check spam, because they were all sent. Even to people who auto-replied. Which was really annoying.

Blog post planning

Maintaining a blog takes more than just writing a bunch of blog posts. You should develop a strategy and planning for your content (especially if you are writing with multiple authors). Also, you should interact with your audience and respond to their comments. In this post, I’ll explain the importance of content planning and give some practical tips on how to effortlessly plan your blog posts.

Blog post planning: create a plan!

If you are serious about blogging, you should make a plan for your content. If you have a personal blog, planning your content will be relatively easy. Planning becomes much harder if you are working with multiple authors writing about different topics, or invite guest bloggers. I’ll give you five important pointers that will help you to create a plan:

1. Create an editorial calendar

A plan starts with a calendar. You should create an editorial calendar in which you plot out all the posts that you (and your co-workers) are going to write. This could just be an excel sheet, but you could also use a plugin or service for this, for instance, Trello or MeisterTask.

2. Sit down and brainstorm

If you want to create an editorial calendar, you could start with a brainstorm. Invite all your blog authors and sit together. Ask everyone what their ideas are and which posts they would like to write in the near future. Make a list of these ideas and wishes, and then plot them out on a calendar. Make sure your authors finish their blogs a few days before the post date so you can proofread, edit if needed, and find or create accompanying illustrations or photos.

3. Use news & current events

When planning content, you should take a look at your calendar as well! Are there any major events coming up which are worth mentioning in your blog post? Or should you write some seasonal posts? Make sure to mix these ‘current-events posts’ with the other posts you have lined up.

Learn how to write awesome and SEO friendly articles in our SEO Copywriting training

SEO copywriting training

4. Blog regularly

You should blog regularly. Giving exact numbers is hard. For a company blog, a daily post will be totally acceptable. For a personal blog, this will probably not be doable at all. Try to establish some frequency and stick to it. Your readers will appreciate a reliable schedule. Once you know you can commit to your chosen schedule, make sure to communicate it to your audience somehow, so they know what to expect.

5. Add variation

If you often write about similar topics, make sure to mix things up a little. Don’t write articles about nearly identical topics one after the other. Of course, you can still write blog series but try to vary between subjects as much as possible. You could also make variations in the form of your content. A video post for example spices things up!

Conclusion

If you take your blog serious, you should create a calendar. It’s a must-have if you are working with multiple authors. Creating an editorial calendar doesn’t have to be hard at all. Good luck!

Read more: ‘SEO Copywriting: the complete guide’ »

How to Create a Custom Facebook Feed in WordPress

Recently, one of our users asked if we could cover how to create a custom Facebook feed in WordPress? You can display Facebook posts from your page or group on your WordPress site to improve engagement. In this article, we will show you how to create a custom Facebook feed in WordPress.

Adding a Facebook feed in WordPress

When and Why You Should Create a Custom Facebook Feed in WordPress

Facebook is the largest social media platform in the world. As a website owner, you may already be engaging with your audiences on Facebook through your Facebook page or by creating a Facebook group.

However, all the posts you make on Facebook are not visible to the people visiting your website. By adding a custom Facebook feed you can show what’s happening on your Facebook page or group to your site visitors.

This will allow more of your users to see your posts and will help you get more Facebook likes. If you are using Facebook remarketing/retargeting pixel on your website, then you can show your ads to those users on Facebook as well.

Having said that, let’s see how to add a custom Facebook feed to your WordPress site.

Adding a Custom Facebook Feed in WordPress

First thing you need to do is install and acivate the Custom Facebook Feed plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Note: This free version of the plugin does not display images in shared links or status updates. For that you will need plugin’s PRO version.

Upon activation, you need to visit Facebook Feed » Settings page to configure the plugin settings.

Custom Facebook feed settings

First you need to provide your Facebook page or group ID. If your Facebook page URL is like this:

https://www.facebook.com/your_page_name

Then you can use your_page_name as your Facebook page ID. On the other hand, if you have a Facebook page URL that looks like this:

https://www.facebook.com/pages/your_page_name/123654123654123

Then you need to use 123654123654123 as your page ID.

If you want to add a group, then you will need to enter your group ID. Simply visit Find My Facebook ID website, and enter the URL of your group in the search box. The website will reveal your Facebook group’s numeric ID.

The next thing you need to enter is an access token. The plugin will work even if you don’t add your own access token, however it is recommended to generate it and add it here.

Simply visit Facebook developers website and click on the create new app button.

New Facebook app

This will bring up a popup where you need to enter a name for your app. Provide an email address and then select a category for your app. Click on the ‘Create App ID’ button to continue.

Creating a new Facebook app ID

Facebook will create an app for you and will redirect you to the app’s dashboard. You need to click on Tools & Support link at the top.

Click on tools and support link at the top of your app's dashboard page

This will bring you to a page with lots of resources on how to use Facebook apps. You just need to click on ‘Access token tool’.

Access token tool

Clicking on the link will take you to a page where you will be able to see your app’s access token or app token.

Access token for your app

You can now copy and paste this access token to the custom Facebook feed plugin’s settings page.

Under the settings section on the page, you need to select whether you are showing a group or a page. You can also choose the number of posts to display, timezone, and language settings.

Don’t forget to click on the save changes button to store your plugin settings.

You can now create a new post or page or edit an existing one where you want to display your Facebook feed. In the post editor, you need to add this shortcode:

[custom-facebook-feed]

You can now save your page or post and preview it. It will fetch and display latest posts from your Facebook page or group in your WordPress page.

Preview of a custom Facebook feed in WordPress

Showing Multiple Facebook Feeds in WordPress

Let’s suppose you want to display more than one custom Facebook feed on your WordPress site. The plugin’s settings only allow you to add one page or group ID.

However, you can easily use the shortcode to display any other custom Facebook feed you want.

Simply add the shortcode like this:

[custom-facebook-feed id=wpbeginner]

The plugin’s shortcode comes with a whole range of parameters. You can visit the plugin’s website to see the complete list of parameters that you can use.

How to Customize The Appearance of Custom Facebook Feed

The plugin allows you customize the appearance of the custom Facebook feed on your website. Visit Facebook Feed » Customize page to edit the customization settings.

Customize appearance of Facebook feed

The customize section is divided into different tabs. Each tab has its own options, you may want to review them to customize the appearance of your custom Facebook feed.

We hope this article helped you add custom Facebook feed in WordPress. You may also want to see our list of 21 best social media monitoring tools for WordPress users.

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