A Quick Guide to WordPress

By James / March 15, 2016
A Quick Guide to WordPress

Wealthy Affiliate has an abundance of training on WordPress. It is definitely worth going through those modules. WordPress has become popular because of its simplicity of use and maintenance. Even with this simplicity though, newer users often get hung up because they don't understand what WordPress can do for them or why they should use it. That's why I created this guide. To help you get a quick overview of WordPress.

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Why WordPress?

WordPress is a software platform in a class of software known as a Content Management System (CMS). A CMS give you the ability to streamline the creation of your website. It takes care of many of the details that traditional web developers would have to handle themselves. Without a CMS, you would have to develop your website using HTML which is a markup language that web servers and browers use to communicate with each other. That's about as much as you need to know about HTML, at least at this stage of your learning.

There are other CMS packages but WordPress has become the most popular. Because of this, there are more themes, plugins, and widgets (more on these later) available for this platform than any other. Many CMS solutions are free of charge.

Popularity Leads to Increased Hacking

Of course, when you are the top player in the pack, you are going to get the most attention, both good and bad. Because hackers are aware of WordPress' popularity, they spend a significant portion of their hacking activities on WordPress. When planning the development of your website, you will have to take this trade off into consideration. If you decide to use an alternative CMS, you won't have as many features available but it won't be as vulnerable to hacks either. There are ways to reduce your susceptibility to hacking, even with WordPress.

Themes, Plugins and Widgets, Oh My!

Another huge benefit of WordPress (and other CMS platform) is the ability to expand its functionality and look.

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The default installation of WordPress gives you a framework and you can add the follow components:

Themes

Themes give you the ability to change the look of your website. Your default WordPress installation comes with a theme already installed. Most website owners choose a different theme as the default is bare bones and doesn't look professional.

There are free themes​ and premium themes. It's a highly competitive market so you can be sure that new and improved themes are popping onto the market frequently. People ask me if they should switch to a premium theme. I tell them to only consider it if they can't find a free theme that gives the look they want.

Although the look of your website is important, providing great content will take priority over everything else.

Plugins

Plugins extend the functionality of your website. They enhance the features whereas the theme concentrates on the look of your site. Just like themes, you can find plugins that are free as well as paid versions. The functionality that plugins provide can be practically anything imaginable, from security to advanced editors. Do a search on WordPress Plugins and you will have hours of material to sift through.

People mistakenly add too many plugins which serves to bloat WordPress with the likely results slowing down your website. If your site can operate well without a particular plugin, it is probably a good idea to forgo its use. Luckily there are plugins that you can install temporarily that can tell you which plugins are using up processing power and take it from there.

Widgets

Widgets are similar in some ways to plugins but they tend to be tied in with the theme. They extend or change the functionality (and sometimes looks) of specific areas within your website. Those areas are typically sidebars, footers, etc. It is possible to include widgets as part of a theme as well as extended functionality within a plugin. It's really up to the designers.

Installing WordPress

Many hosting companies have installers available for various add on components. WordPress is included in most. Usually, it is only a matter of pushing a few buttons and changing some of the default information. If you have never done it yourself, your hosting company will be happy to take you through the steps. Just open a support ticket or jump on their live chat.

There are also some resources available that I am including that explain the process in a step-by-step manner. Please note: the first resource requires that you host your website at Wealthy Affiliate.

This is a video where Kyle (cofounder WA) shows you how easily it is to set up a WordPress website within Wealthy Affiliate.

See the video here.

WP Beginner has several tutorials and great resources you can use when setting up and maintaining your WordPress blog.

See the website here.

How to Add Content

It wouldn't be much of a Content Management System if you weren't able to add content for you blog. In WordPress, you can use pages and posts to manage content. Here is the breakdown of each:

  • Page - Pages are typically used for information that will remain static. Many will use it for About Me pages, Privacy Policies and other compliance information, as well as Contact pages. Landing pages are also set up as a page.
  • Posts tend to be information that is presented chronologically. For instance, if you have an update about a particular topic that is related to your blog, you could use a post. WordPress will display these post with the most recent updates first.

Note: there are no WordPress police that will come knocking at your door if you don't use pages and posts the way they are described here. You are free to use them anyway you see fit. However, for SEO purposes the above set up is the most optimal.

WordPress has a built in editor which you can use to create your pages and posts. The editor takes a bit of getting used to but you should be able to master it working with it for an hour or two.

Next Steps...

Hopefully, this quick overview of WordPress is enough to point you in the right direction. If you want to get your website setup in under 30 seconds, you may want to consider the method described by Kyle.

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Wealthy Affiliate is About Community

By James / March 12, 2016
Wealthy Affiliate is About Community

When people first sign up to Wealthy Affiliate, they notice the vast amount of training that is available. That is likely what got them there in the first place. The ability to learn how to create a sustainable lifestyle from an online business.

Wealthy Affiliate is about so much more than training. It is an awesome community to boot.

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There are thousands of members that are active at any point during the day or night. This means it's highly likely someone is available to help you with a question or situation you are trying to get help with.

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How Much Does It Cost?

Most programs that teach about how to make money online require a cash outlay. Many of them will get you to pay on a monthly subscription.

Another method by other programs is they let you try it out for free for 7-days or 30-days, etc. But they require you to enter in your credit card information. Guess what happens if you forget to cancel within that trial period time frame? Yep, you'll get charged for the first month.

You can sign up for Wealthy Affiliate for free. They never pressure you to upgrade. There are a fair amount of members who are successful in creating their business that never upgrade to premium.

Oh, and Wealthy Affiliate doesn't ask you for your credit card information until you decide you want to upgrade - if you ever decide to do that.

The Founder's Philosophy

Kyle and Carson are the two co-founders of Wealthy Affiliate. They want to help people create viable businesses online. That's their entire motivation. It has been since 2005, when they started Wealthy Affiliate. They are about helping not selling. Sure, you do have to pay a monthly fee if you decide to upgrade to premium, but it is never required and you are never pressured. Besides, they use a good part of the membership money to make the membership much better.

It's About Getting the Help You Need

You would think that as many members as there are within Wealthy Affiliate, Kyle and Carson would have no time whatsoever to answer questions or give you advice when you need it. Yet, anytime a members asks Kyle or Carson a question, they take time out to answer. It may take them a day or two to get back to you but you will find they are committed to helping you succeed.

Be aware that oftentimes the advice you will get is to go through the training. At first, you may think that is not as helpful as it should be but in most cases that is what it takes to get past the problem or question that you have.​

If you need an answer sooner, there are tons of other members who have plenty of experience and can lend a hand when you get stuck. That's how this community works. And if you want to just hang out with some people on live chat, you can do that as well.

Get Paid For Training You Create

Wealthy Affiliate also has a program called the Open Education Project. This is available to premium members who have been so for over three months. The way the program works is you can create a training module for other members. Depending on how receptive the training module is, you will get paid. The more popular it is the more you can make. It has been reported by Kyle and Carson that there are members who make a full time living on just the training that they created. Other members use it to supplement their income while they build their online businesses.

Get Paid to Blog

Each member has a blog as part of membership. You can write just about anything as long as it confirms to Wealthy Affiliate's terms of service. The great thing about the blog is if someone who is not a member reads your blog and signs up from that blog post, you get credit for referring them.

What do you blog about? Try giving useful tips that you come across that wouldn't necessarily be given within the core training. Or perhaps you could expand upon other training or tips that have been given in the past. Others like to report on news that is happening in the online business world. While others still, will update on something personal that is going on in their lives. It's amazing the diversity of subjects that you will find.

Benefits of Joining Wealthy Affiliate

The training along with the community is going to help you create an online business. But the focus is not on selling from your business. The focus is how to engage with your audience and get them to trust you. When that happens selling becomes secondary.

You're going to learn a lot of great lessons on Wealthy Affiliate. That I can guarantee. I always suggest people not to upgrade to premium until they have finished the whole core training. The training allows you to build your website as you follow along so when the training is complete, if you did all the tasks given, you will have a fully working website ready to start making you money. You could use what you earn to upgrade to premium if you so desire.

Be aware that no program can guarantee that you will earn money even after following all the training and performing all the tasks. Wealthy Affiliate is no exception. If you do what is asked of you however, you will be in a much better position to start earning. There is no set time period for when you will start making money.

I wrote a tongue-in-cheek post about how Marketing Gurus Hate Me - And You Too. It was about the kinds of tactics many people throw at us and how they seem to be in it only for the money. Wealthy Affiliate is not about that. Here are some reasons why:

  • You can sign up for free
  • You can stay a free member for as long as you like
  • A credit card is NOT needed to sign up
  • You will learn how to build a solid business intent on helping others
  • You get the help of an entire community.
  • You can get paid for training that you create (premium only)
  • You can get paid from your blog posts
  • The core training will give you the necessary skills to develop your online business.

What's Included in the Core Training?

People who are not familiar with Wealthy Affiliate are not aware of what is available within the core training modules. The core is available to everyone, both free and paid members. The following image shows what is included in the core training:

Wealthy Affiliate Core Training

The following are the course benefits and outcomes:

WA Core Training Coures Benefits and Outcomes

The Price of Wealthy Affiliate is Increasing

By James / March 9, 2016
Wealthy Affiliate Price Increase

I don't normally like to do this, and I have even advised against doing this in the past, but you may want to upgrade your membership of Wealthy Affiliate (WA) to premium. As you can see from the image, Kyle (one of the founders of WA), announced that the price of premium membership is going up soon. It's not a huge increase but why pay it if you don't have to?

Affiliate Disclosure: This page contains affiliate links that may result in commissions generated to the site owner.

Why Upgrade?

It's been shown that premium members make money quicker than starter members. This is not to say starter members don't make money - they do. Generally, it takes them longer to get there. And they don't make as much, all things being equal.

For instance, suppose you decided to promote Wealthy Affiliate (not required). You would receive double the commissions every month from the people you refer who maintain their premium membership. The commission rate for premium members is 50%. It's 25% for starter members. On a $49 membership, you'd receive $24.50 instead of $12.25.

   The current membership at the time of this writing is $47 per month.

So if you'd like to save $2 per month on the World's Premier Money Making program, I would suggest jumping on board this offer now.

Develop Training and Get Paid

After three months of being a premium member, you will be given access to WA's training resources. Here, you can create your own training modules. Depending on how popular those modules become (and how engaged members are) you can actually get paid for those training modules. There are several members that make full time incomes from this alone!

You may wonder why payment is tied to members' engagement such as likes, comments, etc. When you think about it, if people simply got paid for putting up training, it would not be very high quality. The system of paying based on popularity ensures that the training is either going to be great (which the developer will get paid) or it won't be as good as they thought (not so much pay).  This is simply the best way to ensure that quality training is produced.

Want to Know More About Wealthy Affiliate?

I have been a premium member since 2009. The program has so much to offer that it takes up an entire article. So I wrote a review of the program for you to see for yourself. See my review on the Wealthy Affiliate program here.

Should You Fake It Until You Make It?

By James / February 20, 2016
Should You Fake It Until You Make It

How can you show others how to be successful with an online business when you yourself are not yet? Should you fake it until you make it? In other words, are you going to pretend to be successful in hopes to get enough people to sign up to your solution, whatever that happens to be?

This brings up an ethical issue that is on the borderline of lying.

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The good news is it's not necessary to fake it until you make it. You can structure your business in a way you can be totally honest with your readers , while at the same time inviting them to join you in your journey to success.

What many members do in Wealthy Affiliate is to position themselves as someone starting out and showing over time how the business grows.

Another way to approach this is to include whatever training you are currently taking and describe how it helped you obtain a milestone. The more of these you include the more credibility you will gain.

Mention Your Mentors

It's okay to hang on the coattails of others that are successful. When you find someone that is influential, mention them on your website. Show how they were able to help you. Some people may jump right to working with the mentor. Others will be curious about how you are going to do in your business.

There's no doubt having experience goes a long way in convincing people that you can help them do the same. But you have to start somewhere. Using the information in this post, you will be able to answer the question, "should you fake it before you make it?" The answer is no!

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How to Improve a Search Engine Ranking

By James / February 9, 2016
How to Improve a Search Engine Ranking

Affiliate Disclosure: This page contains affiliate links that may result in commissions generated to the site owner.

So, you want to learn how to improve a search engine ranking?

Well, you've come to the right place to learn how to do that!


Learn How to Prepare Your Website for SEO.


Use Keywords

The first step is to make sure you use keywords on your website. Although search engines are incorporating social media signals into their algorithms, keywords are still quite important in order to get your web pages found. After all, that is what we use to search for things online.

Use the following cutting-edge keyword tool to get the job done for you:

The biggest factor when weaving keywords into your pages or posts is to make sure it sounds natural. If it doesn't, don't use them for the post, or try to find alternatives.

Be sure to include the keywords in your title and within the first paragraph. However, don't use it much more than that, otherwise, search engines may flag your for stuffing with keywords.

Use Analytics


How to Add Google Analytics to Your Website


Both Google and Bing (the two biggest at the time of this writing) give access to free tracking tools, both called Analytics. It's relatively easy to set up on your website and provides you with information about the types of people who are visiting your website and what location they are from. It can tell you what pages they are hitting and for how long. It can also tell you which pages they are leaving your website from so you can tweak as necessary.

If you don't use analyics, you are shooting blind when it comes to know how your website is doing. Wouldn't it be great to know how you are doing with your blogging efforts? Install analytics on your website now.

Create Content Frequently

Do you visit websites where the content is relatively current, or do you like to see websites with updates from a couple of years ago? Chances are, when you do a search in the your favorite search engine, the results that get returned will be from websites who have frequent updates. Therefore, you should conclude that search engines want this to happen. Most people would agree that they prefer frequently updated websites. So for those people as well as the search engine, give it to them.

If you don't have the time to update content or you feel you are not good at writing, you should outsource this to a professional writer. It will cost you money but will be well worth it as you will have frequent updates on your website.

If you feel that you want to do it yourself, then consider creating an editorial calendar. Plan on several posts and then schedule them out to be written by you (or your outsourcer) when the particular day arrives. Doing this makes you commit (assuming you follow the schedule) to creating content. This is what most successful bloggers do and is the main reason why they are able to update their websites frequently and consistently. It takes the guess work out.

Use LSI for Keyword Diversity

LSI is an acronym for Latent Semantic Indexing. Fancy phrase to be sure, but it simply refers to similar keywords. Find keywords that are similar to the main keyword and use them in the post. If you want a great starting point, use a thesaurus. Google searches make some related terms available at the bottom of the search results.

Create Over-the-Top, Insanely Useful Content

If you take no other action, be sure to at least take this advice. Make your content so useful that your readers will have not choice but to share it. If all of your content on your website is useful, this will bring them back. When they come back (or stay for a while), search engines reward you with better rankings. And providing useful content will never put you at odds with Google algorithm changes. They want exceedingly useful content. If that is what you provide you cannot be penalized.

Earning Money Online

How to Build a Free Website Today

By James / July 27, 2015

People are intimidated when getting a website because they believe its too complicated or too technical. But I am going to show you how to build a free website today. And I am going to show you how to do it in five extremely simple steps. By the time you finish this tutorial, you will be able to do this on your own and it shouldn't take you more than 10 minutes to do this (can be even done in less time than this).

Disclaimer: Links and banners on this page that lead to purchase could result in site owner receiving a commission.

Before I give you the step-by-step instructions, I want to briefly explain exactly what is going to happen at a high level. There is a free website builder that you enter some simple detail (like the name of the site), pick a theme, and then click on the Build My Website Now button.

When you do that, behind the scenes, you will have your website created as well as WordPress installed, along with some useful and necessary plugins. Don't worry if these terms are a bit foreign to you. Included is some top notch training that will get you up to speed in no time.

Okay, enough of the explanation and onto the step by step instructions.

Step 1

Sign up for the free Website Builder. Use the following:

If you can't see the form above, use this link.

When you enter a name in the form it will immediately check to see if that name is available. If it's not, simply choose another name. Try using some kind of qualifier (either before or after) like "best" or "top" or "easy", etc.

Step 2

The name that you choose will be input into the website builder.

If you are happy with the name, hit the blue "Build My Free Website!" button.

Step 3

You will then be brought to the website builder sign up form. Simply fill out the form and click on the green "Create Account & Continue" button.

Note: your screen will be slightly different in that the name after the prompt "You are about to build:" is going to be whatever the name you entered previously. The name you see above, "enter-website-name-here" is for illustration purposes only.

You will need an account for the site builder as that is how you will get your site details and is the way to get support when you need it.

Step 4

You are then brought to the final stage which will be pre-populated with the name you provided previously and the Free Website option will be automatically selected.

Step 5

Scroll down until you get to the "Choose a look for your website" (which is Step 3 in the site builder interface).

It's up to you the type of look you want. In the training, you will learn how to change the look (theme) anytime you want.

That is essentially all there is to setting up your free WordPress website.

Free Training

It wouldn't be practical to set you up with a website without giving you any training on how to make necessary changes and needed pages (like privacy policies, etc.) But the training included goes even much further than that. There is a program called the Online Entrepreneur Certification program that shows you what is needed to set up your website's framework in such a way that you can actually start earning money with your website.

Frequently Asked Questions

Click on Each Arrow Below for More Information

Is There Any Cost for This Program?

Is there a premium membership?

Is There Any Pressure to Upgrade?

Why Do People Choose to Upgrade to the Premium Membership?

Can You Refer Others to the Site Builder?

Do I Have to Enter My Credit Card Information to Get Started?

What If I Have More Questions?

In Case You Missed the Site Builder Interface

Enter the name of the website in the following form:

If you are unable to see the form above, use this link.

FREE Website | Learn How to Get a Free Money-Making Website!

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