The in-built post scheduling feature of WordPress is super-handy....until it starts not to work. Then it is a cause of huge headaches. I've yet to find a clear cut answer as to why it happens, but sometimes WordPress will fail…
An extremely common request by WordPress users is how to change the font in their posts, pages and themes. Many themes, especially premium ones, provide a set of options in the dashboard that lets the user easily modify the fonts the theme is using. But in cases where the theme does not provide this functionality, it can be implemented by using plugins (of course!!).
This tip is geared for non-technical WordPress users who want some extra control over their site’s appearance by selecting from the vast library of Google Fonts. If you are a WordPress theme developer that wants to include Google Fonts in your theme, you’ll want to read up on how to enqueue the fonts into your theme, and how to provide a theme options panel for your users.
Here are 2 plugins to consider for your font-y needs:
Ah contact forms….such as a standard feature of a website aren’t they? One would think that WordPress would have tons of great, easy-to-implement choices for this. And indeed there are TONS of choices, it’s just that most of them have pretty cryptic interfaces, especially for newbies.
For contact forms and anything data collection oriented I prefer Gravity Forms but it’s not free and for some bloggers there really wouldn’t be any point in buying it. But a basic contact form is something most WordPress users want so it’s important to find a good, simple and easy to use solution. And by “easy to use”, I mean something that can be figured out by a new blogger fairly easily. Not the kind that’s “easy to use” once you’ve spent hours figuring it out.
So I’ve done some testing of some of the most mentioned contact form plugins – the ones that show up in the plugin directory search, along with ones mentioned by other bloggers. Honestly, most of them made my skin crawl. They called themselves things like “fast” and “easy” (which sounds like a recipe for a great time) but hurt my brain to look at them. Instead of list them anyway (it is, after all, my job to filter the chaff on your behalf), I’ve picked just a couple that I think are actually useful.
What Is Jetpack?
Jetpack is a plugin created by the team at WordPress.com. It is one super-plugin that contains a whole suite of features – mini-plugins, if you will. It was created to make available to self-hosted WordPress users some of the convenient features that WordPress.com users enjoy. Some of the features that Jetpack includes are:
- a widget to display your latest Tweets
- WordPress stats about traffic to your blog
- Email subscription to blog posts and comments
- Facebook Like box widget
- mobile theme
- “Carousel” to turn image galleries into slideshows
- image widget – to easily add an image to your sidebar
The speed at which your site loads is becomig increasingly important. Not only does a speedy site provide a good user experience, but it’s becoming increasingly important from an SEO perspective – site speed is a factor that Google considers in its rankings.
One of the easiest and most effective ways you can speed up your site, particularly if you are on an inexpensive shared web hosting plan is to use a service called Cloudflare. Cloudflare, which you can use for free, will speed up your site, help protect it from spammers AND help make it more secure. Here’s how it does that:
CloudFlare protects and accelerates any website online. Once your website is a part of the CloudFlare community, its web traffic is routed through our intelligent global network. We automatically optimize the delivery of your web pages so your visitors get the fastest page load times and best performance. We also block threats and limit abusive bots and crawlers from wasting your bandwidth and server resources. The result: CloudFlare-powered websites see a significant improvement in performance and a decrease in spam and other attacks.
A common question I’ve been getting as of late is about how to embed a PDF into a WordPress page/post so that it’s actually viewable inside the post. If you use the Upload/Insert button to add your .pdf in the same way that you would an image, you get only a text link to download the file which isn’t particularly exciting.
The best and easiest solution I’ve come across is a plugin called “Google Doc Embedder“. Don’t let the name fool you, you don’t have to upload your files to Google Docs – everything is done through your WordPress admin.