Oct8

WordPress Hosting & Blogging: The Perfect Pair

Posted by Kelly Kirkham

Innovation drives the digital world. For those of us who relish creativity and originality, the internet is our place to shine. So how do you connect your creativity to the digital world?  

Here at Midphase, we suggest building a blog that captures your personality, ambition, and excitement. And WordPress is the perfect blogging platform to show the world who you are and what you can contribute to the digital landscape. Creating a successful blog, though, is not a game of chance. Traffic is carefully cultivated with creativity and originality. However, WordPress has all the tools you need to make your blog shine. 

 

How To Build A Creative Blog With WordPress

In this guide, we look at everything bloggers need to know about building an online presence with the WordPress platform. From discovering why WordPress currently supports more than 75 million websites to looking at the best plugins and tools to help you succeed, you will be well equipped to select your new WordPress hosting package and start writing. Let’s get started… 

Why Choose WordPress? 

It is wise to be cautious before beginning your writing endeavors, and it’s important to be selective about the blog you begin to build. Consider the following before making any serious decisions: 

#1. First Impressions Are Important! 

For a fully functioning blog that emanates professionalism and beauty, WordPress can be your first stop. Once you install their world-renowned software, you have two options. You can either choose to build from scratch or purchase a custom template built for stunning websites. There are hundreds of templates available online – all you need to do is pick the one that best represents you!  

#2. Share, Share and Share Some More 

Whether you love or hate social media, you will want to embrace the power of sharing. Social media can help create new traffic and maintain loyal readers. Be sure that your blog has sharing options for each post. WordPress makes it easy for readers to spread your work around the web with helpful sharing buttons. Whether you are integrating with Facebook or Instagram, your posts will soon be filling up news feeds around the country with one easy click. 

#3. Control Your Website Updates 

For many bloggers, nothing is more frustrating than being unable to control blog updates. WordPress avoids this frustration with a user-friendly backend for making customizations and changes based on your preferences alone. Upload a new photo or add a new post from anywhere you have an internet connection. Experiment with colors, fonts, and images to your heart’s content! WordPress celebrates your individuality and makes it easy for you to innovate and experiment until you are completely happy with your post. 

#4. Endless Options 

There are countless features available with WordPress’s open-source code. Open source means that it is free, and anyone can view and contribute to the source code to add, change, and elaborate on an already great platform. Techies have tested and created with WordPress over many years, resulting in a truly amazing software that is perfect for most projects. Along with great templates and customization, you will have access to what are known as “widgets” and “plugins” you can plug into your site. These tools help you with analytics, security, spam, forwarding, newsletters, and more! 

#5. Scalable for Website Growth 

If you’re the type of person who likes to go big, then WordPress is a great platform to start with. If you’re a cautious type who prefers to wait and see, then WordPress is a great platform for you too! With a completely scalable platform, you will have the option to keep it simple or go above and beyond for your website visitors. The most important aspect of WordPress is that you get to choose. You can add an ecommerce store or create additional pages at any time. 

The only real question now is, what are you waiting for? Let’s start building! Our next topic includes the necessary steps to get your website online from domain registration to designing an awesome brand. See more below… 

 A Beginner’s Guide To Creating An Amazing Website

For every great idea, there should be an amazingly useful website to make it a reality, and below we detail the necessary steps to get started building your beautiful and fully functional WordPress blog. 

Building Your WordPress Website 

The latest figures show that 3.2 billion people use the internet on a regular basis. With a global population of 7.2 billion, that means almost half of the world is online, and could potentially have access to your products, services, and content. 

You need an online presence to tap into this market and WordPress is the platform you need to reach your global audience. 

Considering that in the year 2000 only 400 million people were connected to the web, we can assume that today’s 3.2 billion connected users will only grow. There is no better time than now to get online and create your web presence and Midphase can help. 

Follow these steps to get started online: 

Step 1: Pick a domain. 

A great domain name, or web address, will provide your gateway to the web. Like an online signpost, your domain will be used by site visitors to locate your content, so it needs to be memorable and relevant. Nothing beats a great .com but if your WordPress domain isn’t available, consider registering a gTLD (generic top-level domain) like .ninja, .club or .blog.  

Step 2: Select your WordPress Hosting package from Midphase. 

Deciding on a WordPress Hosting package is easy depending on how big you would like your site to be. Your options range from Starter to Pro, and each offers a unique package to meet your needs. Remember that as your website grows, you can always increase your WordPress Hosting package. See your options at Midphase.com. Don’t forget that our expert technical support team is available to answer any questions you may have.  

Step 3: Decide on a theme. 

Many large companies will hire a professional developer for their site, but WordPress makes web design a simple task. Simply choose a WordPress theme that matches the functionality and design that you are looking for, check any reviews or tutorials regarding that theme, and install your new theme on your WordPress website. Once installed, you will have complete freedom to customize your website to your liking.  

Step 4: Consider all options.   

Beyond the basic welcome page, consider including ‘About’ and further content pages. Also, blogs can provide great search engine optimization (SEO) boosts. For a first-time website, it will take some trial and error before you get up and running. However, WordPress is so user-friendly that before long, you will be an expert. If you have any questions along the way contact our support staff or check out our knowledge base for step-by-step guides and other helpful tips. 

Step 5: Try it out. 

Now that you’ve built your WordPress website, the easiest way to get started is to try it out. Teat every page, link, and option to be sure that it meets your expectations. Enlist your family and friends for a beta testing party! 

 

Helpful tips for an awesome WordPress website 

Create a strong password. 

For all accounts associated with your website you will need a strong password, and the longer the better. Spammers are constantly trying to hack into sites to use to send malicious materials. Learn more about the best practice WordPress security below.  

Start simple. 

It’s easy to want to shoot for the moon right out of the gate, but to get your site up and running quickly it is important to start small and work your way up to magnificence. 

Stick with a color scheme. 

By having colors that you refer to repeatedly your site will develop a theme that can help your brand succeed. 

Use stock images for the professional touch. 

Don’t pay a lot of money for images before checking out the free images available on the web. Other sites will charge you a small membership fee for access to all their images. Remember to size your images appropriately once you have selected them. 

Be selective about plugins and widgets. 

A few additional features can be great but if you overdo it your site can get bogged down, so it’s better to be selective. Keep all plugins and widgets updated to avoid security concerns. 

Educate yourself as you go. 

You don’t have to be a programming genius to create a site, but it doesn’t hurt to familiarize yourself with the programming world. Learning the basics is easier than ever with great (free) educational sites like W3Schools and Code Academy. Start with HTML and work your way through the languages you may be interested in. 

Get friendly with Google Webmaster Tools. 

Just about everything you need to know about search engine optimization (SEO) can be found on this site. You can check for mobile-friendliness and test your site’s loading time too.

Accept help – you’ll need it. 

Any first-time site builder will tell you that at times you might want to throw your computer at the wall, but Midphase offers around-the-clock support for that very reason. Give us a call, it could save you valuable hardware costs! 

Design a killer logo 

Once you’ve decided on the style of your website in accordance with your brand DNA, make sure you design a logo that will serve as a visual representation of your brand across all communications. This should feature on each page of your new website; customers will familiarize themselves with your logo and recognize your brand anywhere! 

Now that your WordPress website is well on its way and you have the expert tips you need to get going, let’s take a look at ways you can keep your WordPress website and site visitors secure once you’ve clicked the ‘Publish” button and shared your masterpiece with the world.  

 Top 5 Security Concerns For A WordPress Blog

It’s no secret that WordPress is the most commonly used publishing platform for bloggers. We know that its popularity can be attributed to its relatively simple, user-friendly, and intuitive interface and has unlimited customization features. 

Most of the WordPress sites found in the blogosphere are self-hosted, meaning that the administrator is responsible for security, privacy, and obtaining affordable hosting. In a nutshell, there are several ways that the security of a WordPress blog can be enhanced; the problem is that few administrators apply these security tenets. This makes WordPress blogs vulnerable and easy targets for hackers. However, there are steps you can take to secure your WordPress website.  

The following is a list of top five security concerns, with their possible solutions, for a WordPress blog. 

#1. Insecure Plugins and Themes

WordPress provides numerous free plugins and themes that enhance the functionality of your blog. However, it is important to note that some of these features may contain inbuilt vulnerabilities or sometimes-malicious code that can comprise your site. Therefore, it is important to download themes and plugins from accredited developers and to always ensure that your WordPress plugins, themes, and the overall platform are updated. 

#2. SQL Injection and URL Hacking

WordPress database-oriented and runs its server scripts in PHP format. These two features make it very susceptible to malicious URL insertion attacks. SQL injection describes a type of URL attacks in which hackers embed codes in a URL that triggers certain behaviors from databases. From these attacks, hackers can scoop sensitive information and even modify the content in the site. Modifying the default database tables’ prefix and setting stringent guidelines of accessibility in your Apache .htaccess file can prevent SQL injection and other URL attacks.

#3. Default Administrator Account

Many default WordPress sites feature an administrator user account whose username is usually ‘admin’. Hackers usually attempt to log into these accounts by just guessing passwords. It is advisable that you do away with the admin account and create a new user with an unpredictable username and a complex password. The hacker will have to guess the username and password, which is a much more daunting, nearly impossible, task. 

#4. Database Permissions

Database permissions allow the administrator to access and modify specific parts of the database. In case database permissions are not tight enough, hackers might exploit this weakness to modify content and structure. Thus, it is important that you update your database permissions and put the right security checks to enhance its security. For instance, you can add commands in the. htaccess file to block access to sensitive files. 

#5. Password Predictability

Having a strong password can protect the site from brute force login attacks. Hackers usually rely on automated scripts to make password guesses to log into your WordPress administrator account. An effective defense is to use a longer, mixed type password that will take longer for a brute force attack to crack the code. Additionally, you can install a login limiter. A login emitter blocks a username or an IP address that tries and fails to send login requests based on a set threshold rate. For instance, a login limit of 5 attempts per 10 minutes can be accompanied by a penalty timeout of one hour. 

By following these helpful tips, your WordPress website will be as secure as Fort Knox. However, getting readers to visit your blog on a regular basis can be a much tougher challenge than keeping the bugs, viruses, and hackers out of your website. Luckily, we have some tips from the experts to help you attract attention to your new WordPress blog. See more below… 

 

5 Quick Steps For Blog Success

Tweets, posts, and status updates are all great marketing tools, but you should never underestimate the power of a good old-fashioned blog to gather attention for your website, no matter its original purpose. Here are some quick and easy steps to make the most of your blogging experience. 

Blogging can be time-consuming; however, research shows that a blog can generate 126% more leads from potential new customers. While it is easy to fall behind with your posts, but if your blog is experiencing a dry spell there are a few things you can do to get yourself up and running again.  

The key to a successful blog is routine and interest. Once you get your readers on board, make sure that you provide content that’s interesting enough to keep them coming back. Follow the steps below to get the most readers through the door: 

Discover your USP. 

Discover what makes you stand out from the crowd or your Unique Selling Proposition. What specialized topic do you know more about than the average individual? Remember that if you write about something you enjoy, you’ll see increased engagement. 

Make a list. 

Find your favorite online note-taking medium (Evernote, Notebook++, OneNote, etc) and start writing down anything and everything that you find interesting; it can be pictures, videos, or simply links to interesting stories. You can come back to your list whenever you’re running out of steam. 

Don’t overthink it. 

There are some writers who will slave over their blog posts to make them perfect, but this isn’t crucial. Obviously check for grammar and credibility but remember that good content is about the topic and interest, not about commas. Your posts should be engaging, and your audience will identify more with your writing if it mimics natural speech rather than if it is regimented. 

Plan your posts. 

If you find yourself stuck in a rut, pick a topic and outline your paragraph structures in a plan format. Eventually, your outline will become specific enough that it will write itself (and you get to use your planning skills from middle school!). Don’t think of writing a blog post as a big project; instead, think of it as many small tasks combined into one to keep from getting overwhelmed. 

When in doubt, write more. 

Learning to write well is like training for a marathon: you won’t get faster times unless you run a lot, just as you won’t get any better at writing unless you write a lot. Be patient with yourself, not all your posts will be epic, but you will get there if you keep trying. 

Now that you have the basics of creating an amazing WordPress blog, all that’s left to do is get started. Visit Midphase.com today to begin your journey and save budget along the way. Partner with a web host who has the tools, resources, and expertise you need to become a blogging success.

This article was brought to you by Midphase, for shared hosting, cloud servers and 24/7 support visit our site here www.midphase.com

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