Ben is a lifelong Nintendo fan who likes to build websites, and make video games. He buys way too much Lego.
WordPress blogs have become an important tool for promoting businesses. There can be a bit of work involved in maintaining this online presence, and your boss may expect you to get involved – this person may even decide to hand over full responsibility of the blog to you.
This new addition to your job description can be a bit daunting if you have never dealt with the WordPress platform before. The good news is that there is a relatively gentle learning curve involved in picking up the basics. The problem is that your boss might assume that you already know this stuff, so they could fail to offer you any training – not to worry. Here are the 11 things your boss expects you to know about WordPress:
- A WordPress blog is a way to interact with existing customers and attract new customers. It encourages people to keep talking about your products or services, and you can even use it as a tool to get your readers to promote your business for you.
- The hard-sell tactic does not work well on blogs. People will not be interested in your content if they believe that you are purely advertising products and services. The reader needs to feel that the content you offer is useful to them in some way, and they are likely to be too internet savvy to fall for thinly disguised advertisements. In order for your company blog to be successful, you will need to think carefully about what content will benefit your customers.
- One of the keys to a successful website is to choose the right theme – this is the template that determines the design of the blog. WordPress offers a good choice of free themes that are easy to install, but it is usually better to pay for a custom theme as this will give your site a far more professional look. First impressions do count, and the first thing that visitors to your blog are going to notice will be the theme. If you’re looking for a new theme then we have a variety of themes to offer! 🙂
- There are two versions of WordPress – wordpress.com and wordpress.org. The wordpress.com platform comes with free web hosting, but this option is better for hobby bloggers because there are limits on what you can do with this platform. The WordPress.org option offers more functionality but has a higher level of technical knowledge required, the main benefit being that you can choose from thousands of plugins and custom themes. When people use wordpress.org they will also have to pay for hosting for the website.
- The WordPress online community is a great resource to turn to if you have any problems with the platform.
- A website needs to have its own domain name in order for it to seem professional. This means that if people do want to use wordpress.com, they should definitely consider paying for domain mapping. Domain mapping means you will be able to use the domain name you select and not the one provided by WordPress.
- If you use the self hosted (wordpress.org) version of WordPress then you will get access to thousands of powerful plugins which offer many useful functions. It’s a good idea to learn more about what’s available.
- It is often said that content is king online. This means that the bloggers should put a good deal of effort into creating readable content that benefits from good spelling and grammar. I’d recommend the Jetpack plugin to help with this – it’s a free plugin by the team from WordPress.com – and it includes a spelling and grammar checker.
- It is unlikely that many people will read your blog unless you make the effort to promote it. This means learning how to use social media like Facebook, and Twitter from where you can add links back to your website.
- It’s a good idea to learn a bit about search engine optimisation (SEO), so that you can create content that is going to do well in the search engines. Many businesses, which are serious about performing well online, will pay for SEO services, but you have to be really careful with the company you select. They could do more harm than good – so it’s a good idea to read up on best practices and things not to do. I’d recommend starting with Googles webmaster guidelines.
- In order for a blog to be successful it needs to have fresh content added regularly. Create a website content strategy and stick to it!