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Preventing WordPress Malware With 3 Simple Steps

Preventing WordPress Malware With 3 Simple Steps

Preventing WordPress Malware With 3 Simple Steps

Preventing WordPress Malware sounds like a great thing to talk about uh?

Hopefully you are comfortably interested in reading this post in an effort to proactively avoid dealing with a WordPress infection. If so this is great news because it shows that you take WordPress security seriously and you do not want to find yourself in the situation where you are dealing with a WordPress malware infection on your website that is causing it to either function improperly or be completely inaccessible all together.

We have a team of Agents that have been servicing flat fee WordPress support issues since 2009. One of the most popular services that we offer is our Infection Removal Service and we can tell you that over the years we have seen it all and conquered it all when it comes to WordPress infections.

While there are hundreds and maybe even thousands of different ways a website can become vulnerable and get infected there are three very common reasons why an infection could become present on your WordPress website. Avoiding these three often seen causes that lead to a WordPress infection will increase the level of security and stability on your website and decrease any panic or concerns that you may have in getting an infection on your WordPress site.

Our goal here is to fully outline in detail the three most commonly seen reasons that lead to a WordPress infection. By the end of this article you will have a full understanding of each reason and be able to jump into action on your own website to ensure that none of these things are in place which in turn will automatically limit the vulnerability of your website getting an infection. Simply watching out for these three very common causes will arm you with a strong strategy in preventing a WordPress malware infection.

UPDATE YOUR WORDPRESS SOFTWARE – Preventing WordPress Malware

One of the most impressive features of using WordPress as your content management system is that it is constantly being updated to not only provide better functionality but also to enhance its level of security and safe usage. It is extremely important that you manage and maintain the software updates on your WordPress website to limit not only security concerns but also any functionality conflicts that could arise from not completing your updates.

WordPress updates come in many different forms. Below are the different categories of updates that may be available on your WordPress website.

WordPress Core Update
This is the heart and soul of your entire WordPress installation. This is the core open source software that makes up the WordPress environment that you are using for your website. This software can be found and downloaded at the link below.
https://wordpress.org/

The WordPress core files are extremely important to stay up-to-date in order to comply with the ongoing web standards as well as any security concerns that  may make your website vulnerable to attacks. If you are not currently running the newest version of WordPress core, you are putting your website at risk and shouting out loud to hackers and other malicious software that exists on the internet looking for websites to do their dirty deeds on.

Major upgrades usually happen two or three times a year and minor releases happen as needed. Depending on where your site is hosted, some hosting companies will automatically update your WordPress core. Below is a tentative update schedule for 2020 through 2021.

For a full list of every single WordPress core release that has ever been available you can visit the release archives at the link below.
https://wordpress.org/download/releases

 Let us take a brief trip down memory lane for a moment.

Just for some fun facts here I wanted to include a brief WordPress history lesson. In 2002, Matt Mullenweg, a college student at the time, installed the b2 or cafelog blogging system for personal use. Unfortunately, the original creator of b2/cafelog had to give up updating his creation because of personal matters and the project and its community were left without a leader.

On April 1st, 2003, Matt created a new branch of b2 on SourceForge by forking the original b2/cafelog system to create his own version with the help of Mike Little. Matt’s friend, Christine Tremoulet recommended calling it WordPress and that’s the name they stuck with. After hundreds (maybe thousands) of commits to the official SVN repository, the first version, WordPress 0.7 was released on May 27th, 2003.

WordPress 1.0 was released in January 2004: otherwise known as the ‘Davis’ version. Mullenweg has an affinity for jazz greats. He names all updates after Jazz greats from the past and today. In addition, Matt used to include a plugin called Hello Dolly in every release. This plugin is a long-standing tribute to Louis Armstrong.

Below is a great short video that explains the uber importance of why you should update WordPress when an update is available. You can also check out another great article at the link below explaining the features and benefits of updating WordPress.
https://www.wpbeginner.com/beginners-guide/why-you-should-always-use-the-latest-version-of-wordpress/

WordPress Plugin Updates
Plugins, plugins, plugins and did I mention plugins? WordPress plugins are the best friend and confidant in any WordPress environment. Plugins enhance and create functionality which adds value to your website.

So I’m sure you already know this by now that there are tons of plugins out there and on average any given WordPress website is usually running 10 or more active plugins. With the installed plugins that are actively being used on a WordPress website there are updates that happen frequently.

Now before I get into detail about these updates and what to look for and how to manage them it is important to understand that plugins need to be broken up into two subcategories.

1. Free Plugins
These are the plugins that are most commonly used on a WordPress website. The majority of these types of plugins are either downloaded from wordpress.org or installed directly from the administrative area in your WordPress website.  These plugins like any plugins, are maintained and updated by the developer as they see fit to improve on the functionality of their plugin or adapt the code within the plugin to stay up-to-date with the changes to WordPress core itself. As the developer makes updates to their created plugin, these updates are then pushed out as notifications to WordPress users that there is a new version of the plugin that they have installed on their website.

According to wordpress.org there are over 58,000 free plug-ins available for download. See at https://wordpress.org/plugins. I guarantee that this number below changes often as there are constant additions added to the wordpress.org plugin directory because of the many talented and generous developers out there that create plugins to improve and enhance the WordPress experience.

The below image is a very familiar view for many WordPress users. You will see a bubbled number next to the word updates and plugins in your WordPress administrative area when there is a pending update that needs to be completed on a free WordPress plugin.

2. Premium Plugins
Now let’s talk about premium plugins. A premium plugin is going to be a plugin that you have paid money to use. In most cases this is an upgrade to a free plugin that you are already using. The premium version of the free plugin will enable you to additional features that the free version does not include. The updating process for premium plugins can sometimes be different than the process you are used to with free plugins. Some premium plugins will require you to actually manually upload the newest version of the plugin which you can have access to in the account where you purchased the plugin. On the other hand some premium plugins will have the same update process that you do for free plugins.

So now that I have explained the two subcategories of plugins let’s get back to the main topic at hand here of preventing a WordPress malware infection. Failure to complete the updates that your plugins have pending is one of the most common reasons a WordPress website can become infected. The majority of plugin updates that become available will include security improvements that limits the vulnerability of your website to malicious activity. This is why completing your plugin updates is so extremely important. Not to mention that  failure to complete your WordPress plugin updates can lead to functionality conflicts that would cause your website not to work properly.

Below is a short video showing you the easiest way and foolproof way to update your plugins on your WordPress website. Read about EASY updates at the link below.
https://www.wpfixit.com/update-wordpress-themes-and-plugins

WordPress Theme Update
Your active WordPress theme is the group of files that make up the actual design of your website. Just like I talked about earlier with plugins there are both free and premium themes.

Currently at the date of this post, there were actively over 8000 free WordPress themes available at wordpress.org.

Updates to themes will be visible in the WordPress administrative menu under Appearance > Themes. You can also find any theme updates under the WordPress administrative menu Dashboard > Updates. If you are using a free WordPress theme the update process will be pretty straightforward. You will be able to click an update now hyperlink in the appearance area of your WordPress administrative menu or in your General > Updates area. You can see an example of each one of these areas in the images below.

APPEARANCE > THEMES

DASHBOARD > UPDATES

Many WordPress users are not running their website using a free WordPress theme. In the majority of WordPress installations there is going to be a premium theme that is running. Most premium WordPress themes require a license activation code to be able to have access to update notifications which allow you to update the theme to the newest version directly from your WordPress admin area.

There are some premium WordPress themes that do not have the ability for update notifications inside of your WordPress admin area. If this is the situation with the WordPress theme that you are actively using it will require you to manually upload and update the active theme on your website.

Below is an in-depth article walking you through the many different ways to update a WordPress theme.
https://kinsta.com/blog/how-to-update-wordpress-theme.

SUPER IMPORTANT
If there are additional WordPress themes installed on your website that are not being used, delete them immediately. There is no reason to keep inactive WordPress themes inside of your WordPress installation. Keeping these will definitely increase your vulnerability and decrease the ability in preventing WordPress malware.

So just to keep with the theme here of preventing a WordPress malware infection, keeping your WordPress theme updated to the newest version is always the best practice to limit the vulnerability on your website that hackers love to look for and target.

WordPress Staging Update
So we have talked about keeping WordPress core updated, updating all of your installed plugins and making sure that your active theme is updated. The last area of updating that we will touch on here may not apply to all WordPress users.

Many WordPress users will have a staging environment setup within the same hosting account as their production website which they use to test different functionalities of their website and complete updates on before pushing those updates to their production site.

Another common scenario is designing a new website or a development website on a subdomain within the same hosting account as a production site.

What we seen often in our many years of removing infections from WordPress websites is that these staging environments or development environments are left dormant and the creators of these environments never complete the software updates in them.  This can cause a very messy situation.

If you are not actively using your staging or development environment, delete it. If you are in need of your staging or development environment, make sure that you are maintaining all of the software updates in them just like you do on your production site. This includes all the update categories that we mentioned earlier in this article. Update WordPress core, update all of your installed plugins and make sure that the active theme is running the newest version.

We really cannot stress it enough that if you are not actively maintaining your staging or development area that it will surely leave your entire hosting account vulnerable and it is just a matter of time before an infection arises.

Check out the link below that will show you some valuable staging site best practices.
https://www.uncannyowl.com/wordpress-staging-sites

So hopefully at this point in the article you understand intimately the importance of completing all of your WordPress software updates. Doing this is the first simple step to preventing WordPress malware. Remember that these updates are there for a reason and should not be ignored. If you were driving your car and the engine light came on that is the car’s software telling you that there is a problem that needs to be attended to. The same thing goes for all of those bubbled update numbers inside of your WordPress admin area. You must manage and maintain these to ensure that you are limiting the vulnerabilities in your WordPress website.

RUN RECOMMENDED PHP VERSION – Preventing WordPress Malware

Not sure if you knew this but there are actually hosting requirements that WordPress needs to function optimally.

 

WordPress runs under PHP; for server side scripting language, and MySQL; for database management platforms and below are the requirements needed for the server environment:

– PHP (Versión 7 or higher).
– MySQL (5.6 or greater).
– URL Rewrite Capability; It is not required, but strongly recommended for a better URL friendly site.
– HTTPS; It is not mandatory but strongly recommended for secure communication between the server and your browser.

WordPress still gives support to PHP Version 5.2.4+ and MySQL Version 5.0, but because these versions have reached the official end of life support, they are considered a security vulnerability.

Source: https://wordpress.org/about/requirements

PHP has something called an EOL.  What this stands for is END OF LIFE cycle. What it means is a release that is no longer supported. Users of this release should upgrade as soon as possible, as they may be exposed to un-patched security vulnerabilities. Yes security vulnerabilities. If your WordPress installation is using a version of PHP that has reached its end of life cycle, you are really opening the doors and windows to hackers that want to get into your house and wreak havoc.

Below is a nice simple life cycle chart of PHP versions.

Source: https://www.php.net/supported-versions.php

Many of the popular and modern WordPress hosting companies are operating with the newest versions of PHP within their server environments. There are however still hosting companies out there that WordPress users are giving their money to each month which still do not provide the newest version of PHP as an option on the server.

How to Check PHP Version
You may not even notice the PHP version, when things are going fine. But some plugins need a certain version of PHP to work as intended. Let us take a popular WooCommerce plugin as an example. You need to have PHP version 5.6 or later in order to use the latest WooCommerce version. Otherwise your online shop may not work and you may lose the revenue.

There are many ways to find the PHP version of your WordPress site:

The simplest way is to ask your host.
Use a plugin like Display PHP Version to see the version number in your dashboard under “At a Glance” section.
Use php.ini or phpinfo.php file to view the PHP version.
Check your cPanel under the statistics sidebar or use apps like “PHP Config”, “PHP Variable Manager” or similar. Remember each folder on your account can have different PHP versions. Hence look for the folder on which you have WordPress installation.
Most of the commercial themes and some of the plugins will have the option to check the server status like PHP version, memory limit, etc. For example, if you are using WooCommerce, you can view the PHP version under “WooCommerce > System Status” menu as shown below:

Latest WordPress versions include a feature called Site Health. It will show a warning message in the Dashboard section when you use deprecated PHP like below.

You can go to “Tools > Site Health > Info” section to find the latest PHP version used on your site. You will see a warning message under “Status” tab when using the deprecated version.

We would like to just summarize and restate what we said in the beginning of this portion related to PHP updates. Running your WordPress website in a hosting environment that is using an end of life cycle version of PHP is a very dangerous game to play. This is an extremely vulnerable point of attack for any hacker or suspicious script that wants to get into your website files and database.

Make sure that you take action immediately to verify what version of PHP your hosting environment is running and based on that information take the appropriate steps to ensure that you are running on the newest version. Doing so will make sure that you are Taking a necessary step in preventing a WordPress malware infection.

MANAGE ACCOUNT ACCESS – Preventing WordPress Malware

There is absolutely no way we would let you escape grips of this article without talking about account access in relation to your WordPress installation. Now right away you may be thinking that this is just the login information to access your WordPress administrative area. Yes, that is one piece of managing account access but there are many other accounts related to your WordPress website that if you are not managing the access properly it can cause vulnerabilities and lead to a WordPress malware infection.

Let us break down the different levels of access that every WordPress installation has.

 

WordPress Admin Login
This is the area of your WordPress installation that you are probably most familiar with. This is the place where you actually log into the administrative area of your WordPress website to manage your content and your website settings.

WordPress uses a concept of Roles, designed to give the site owner the ability to control what users can and cannot do within the site. A site owner can manage the user access to such tasks as writing and editing posts, creating Pages, creating categories, moderating comments, managing plugins, managing themes, and managing other users, by assigning a specific role to each of the users.

WordPress has six pre-defined roles: Super Admin, Administrator, Editor, Author, Contributor and Subscriber. Each role is allowed to perform a set of tasks called Capabilities. Below is the breakdown for the six predefined roles that are included in WordPress.

Super Admin – somebody with access to the site network administration features and all other features. See the Create a Network article.
Administrator – somebody who has access to all the administration features within a single site.
Editor – somebody who can publish and manage posts including the posts of other users.
Author  – somebody who can publish and manage their own posts.
Contributor – somebody who can write and manage their own posts but cannot publish them.
Subscriber – somebody who can only manage their profile.

Check out the link below for a detailed breakdown of WordPress user roles.
https://themeisle.com/blog/wordpress-user-roles/

Hosting Account Login
Your hosting account is the company that you pay to store and serve the files and content of your WordPress website. It is important that you have this information and have control and access to your hosting environment. It is also equally important that there are not any other users that have this access without your knowledge as this gives an individual full control over every aspect of your website.

FTP Credentials
FTP stands for a file transfer protocol. This is a process of connecting to your server so you can access the files that are located in the hosting environment. Many times FTP credentials will be created when your hosting account is setup.

FTP access is also a very dangerous place for anybody to have the ability to edit change or delete files on your server. It is so important that you understand where these credentials are located and also manage who actually has access to them.

Database Credentials
Your database is the area of your website that stores all of the content which is displayed on your WordPress website. This is also the area where all the settings for the functionality of your website and the design seetings are stored.

Most hosting environments offer a phpMyAdmin interface to manage database entries. These credentials should always be kept private and only given access to individuals that are trusted and will not cause any harm.

Enforce Strong Passwords
One of the biggest vulnerabilities and reasons why a WordPress website can get hacked is because of the use of weak passwords. We cannot tell you how many times we have seen WordPress users that have their passwords set to the actual word “password“.

Just taking a simple common-sense approach to creating strong passwords will enhance your WordPress security tenfold. Doing this simple step is key in preventing WordPress malware.

There are many free online tools that will generate strong passwords for any account that you have. One of our favorites is a tool by LastPass which you can check out at the link below and generate highly secure passwords.
https://www.lastpass.com/password-generator

Schedule Password Changes
Another very simple and powerful password strategy that you can do in preventing WordPress malware is to schedule password changes. What we mean by this is perhaps every three months or an interval of your choice you can change the passwords of the accounts related to your website. This will add another level of security behavior to your WordPress installation.

If you are running an e-commerce website or a social networking website where you have many users that have accounts within your WordPress installation, you can use a mass password change plugin to have the passwords of all your user accounts changed. You can check out the details of this free plugin at the link below.
https://wordpress.org/plugins/mass-users-password-reset

Let Us Summarize – Preventing WordPress Malware

We really hope that the 3 simple actions below that we have outlined in this article in preventing WordPress malware has given you a higher comfort of security for your WordPress website. 

UPDATE YOUR WORDPRESS SOFTWARE
RUN RECOMMENDED PHP VERSION
MANAGE ACCOUNT ACCESS

If you have any questions at all about what you have read here please drop us a comment below and we will get those questions answered quickly.

WE CAN REMOVE YOUR INFECTION RIGHT NOW!!!

This very detailed service will make sure your WordPress site is fully cleaned and secured to prevent future infections. We will start cleaning right away.

SEE SERVICE DETAILS

The post Preventing WordPress Malware With 3 Simple Steps appeared first on WP Fix It.

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Can a Digital Marketer Work From Home?

Can a Digital Marketer Work From Home?

Digital marketing is a rewarding career with many unique benefits.

One of the best things about a career in digital marketing is that there are plenty of opportunities for digital marketers to work from home.

Our agency has served clients in all continents for the last 20 years, exclusively through remote consulting.

Even companies that have traditionally worked in-office are shifting their marketing roles to work from home positions.

In this guide, I’ll break down the opportunities for working from home as a digital marketer and how you can get started.

What Digital Marketing Positions Can Be Done From Home?

Digital marketing encompasses a wide range of different practices. This includes:

Search engine marketing
Social media marketing
Content marketing
Email marketing
Affiliate marketing
Paid advertisements

All these specific focus areas are great for remote work as most tasks can be completed online.

This means there are many different career paths a digital marketing professional who wants to work at home can follow.

Here are some of the most common positions a digital marketer can perform while working from home.

PPC Specialist
SEO Specialist
Digital Marketing Specialist
Social Media Specialists and Managers
Content Specialists and Marketers
Copywriter

PPC Specialist

The PPC specialist role is an entry-level position focused on running paid advertising campaigns. The specialist is responsible for developing the campaign strategy, creating the ads, and monitoring the campaign’s success.

PPC specialists require a variety of skills including keyword research, analytical thinking, and copywriting, among others.

SEO Specialist

An SEO specialist is an entry-level role that is responsible for designing and managing organic search campaigns. The position requires an extensive understanding of how search engines work and what techniques you can use to boost a website’s search engine rankings.

Some of the daily tasks include researching keywords, optimizing content, reviewing performance, and running an SEO audit.

Resources to Become an SEO Expert

Best SEO Certifications to Learn SEO

Digital Marketing Specialist

A digital marketing specialist is an entry-level position with a broader focus. The role involves creating and executing campaigns across various digital marketing channels.

Digital marketing specialists must have a deep understanding of how the different areas of digital marketing work to be able to create effective campaigns.

Some of the day to day responsibilities of a digital marketing specialist include:

Managing organic search campaigns
Creating ads for PPC campaigns
Reviewing and analyzing data from email marketing campaigns
Monitoring social media platforms for followers and brand engagement
Optimizing the brand’s website for conversions

Resources to Become a Digital Marketing Specialist

Best Digital Marketing Courses
Top Digital Marketing Certificate Programs
How to Learn Digital Marketing From Home

Social Media Specialists and Managers

The social media specialist is an entry-level role responsible for increasing brand awareness, engagements, conversions through social media channels.

As social media specialists gain more experience, they can become Social Media Managers.

Social Media Managers create and oversee all the company’s social media campaigns both paid and organic.

The position requires a deep understanding of how each social platform works and how their audience bases are unique.

A good social media manager knows how to reach the right target audience and how to create content to engage them.

Resources to Become a Social Media Expert

Best Social Media Marketing Courses
Best Facebook Ads Courses
How to Learn Social Media Marketing

Content Specialists and Marketers

Content specialists create content that is designed to reach the business’ target audience. They have a deep understanding of SEO and know how to make content that is engaging and performs well in search engines.

Content marketing specialists can create content for websites, social media platforms, email, or other digital marketing channels.

With more experience, content specialists can advance to content marketers or content managers.

These positions are responsible for creating the overall content strategy, monitoring its success, and promoting the content to the target audience.

Resources to Become a Content Specialist

Best Content Marketing Courses
How to Get Into Content Marketing

Copywriter

Copywriting is writing intended to persuade. In digital marketing, there is plenty of work available for copywriters as businesses need to write content that converts visitors into leads and eventually customers.

Some of the types of material a copywriter creates include blog posts, landing pages, whitepapers, email newsletters, video scripts, and social media posts.

Many copywriting positions are freelancing roles that allow you to work from home.

Resources to Become a Copywriter

Best SEO Copywriting Courses

Skills Needed For a Remote Digital Marketer

Here are some of the skills needed to work from home successfully as a digital marketer:

Writing and communication

Writing is an essential skill for digital marketers as so much of today’s digital marketing strategies center around creating content.

If you know what makes good content, and how to create it, you can create effective campaigns for search engines and social media.

Digital marketing is highly collaborative, so being able to write well will help you communicate better with your team members.

SEO

SEO is a vital piece of any digital marketing strategy. It allows you to tap into a large relevant audience without having to pay for advertisements.

Digital marketers of all specialties must know how SEO works if they want to be effective in their role.

The important areas of SEO digital marketers need to master are technical, off-page, and on-page SEO. Knowing these will allow you to structure your content and website for optimal performance.

You’ll also know how to perform keyword research to find the best available opportunities.

Conversion rate optimization

The end goal of any digital marketing strategy is to convert web traffic into sales. Digital marketers who understand conversion rate optimization can bring significant improvements to their company’s campaigns.

Conversion rate optimization is the process of testing different elements of a website or advertisement to see which combination converts the best.

This could involve adjusting copy, calls to action, images, or other design elements.

Design Skills

Strong visuals are a key part of digital marketing. They are common among social media posts and required for various types of advertisements.

As a digital marketing professional, it’s important to know how to design your own visuals.

If you are able to create the graphic for a social media post or the banner ad for a PPC campaign yourself, you save your company from needing to hire another person.

There are plenty of tools you can use for creating designs and editing images. For example, Canva. It is quick to learn and easy to use.

Technical Skills

Digital marketers need to know how to use a variety of software and tools. This includes:

Analytics platforms like Google Analytics
Marketing automation software like Klaviyo
Social media management tools like Buffer
Design tools like Photoshop
SEO tools like SEMRush

What are the Benefits of a Digital Marketing Career?

Here are some of the many benefits to a career in digital marketing:

Great long-term opportunities

Digital marketing is here to stay as more companies shift their resources to digital sales channels. Within the domain of digital marketing, there are numerous paths you could follow including:

Content marketing
Social media marketing
PPC marketing
Search engine marketing

Many of these positions have overlapping skill requirements, making it possible to move from one discipline to another if you choose.

Earn a solid income

Salary of Online Marketing Professionals

Digital marketing careers pay well on average. The amount that you can make working as a digital marketing professional depends on your experience, location, and specialization.

Entry-level jobs start around $40K annual salary. As you gain experience, the average income increases. Marketing professionals who make it to the managerial level can make between $59K to $97K+ per year.

Digital marketers make good money as freelancers as well. The average hourly rate for digital marketing freelancers is between $50 – $200 per hour.

Resources to Learn More

How to Make Money With Digital Marketing
How to Make Money With SEO

You can use your creativity

Digital marketing is a great career for those who like to follow their innovative ideas. You can try out all your ideas in your marketing campaigns and directly measure their success.

Work independently

Digital marketing affords plenty of opportunities to work for yourself. You can work as a freelancer and choose your own clients. Or you could start a digital marketing agency. With your digital marketing skills, it is easy to get started marketing your services online.

Work from any location

Digital marketing gives you the ability to work from anywhere. Most digital marketing tasks are completed online. This means there is no restriction on where you must live as you simply need access to the internet.

Many digital marketing agencies and companies embrace remote working as it provides several benefits to the business.

What are the Benefits of Working From Home?

Remote work is more popular than ever before. Many companies have been forced to adopt the practice with the inability to congregate in physical offices.

With today’s online tools, teams can collaborate and work efficiently despite not being in the same room.

Here are some of the benefits workers and businesses can enjoy from working at home:

Lower costs

Businesses can reduce their costs significantly by not having a physical office. With a remote workforce, there is no need to have the overhead of a lease or building maintenance costs. You also don’t need to pay for employees’ parking and commuting expenses, which is expected in some cities.

More diverse workforce

Because they’re not bound to a certain location, remote teams are often more diverse. Companies can search anywhere for workers and will often uncover new high-quality talent.

With a team from various locations, each worker offers a unique perspective, which can be used to improve the group’s performance.

Better work-life balance

Working remotely gives digital marketing professionals a better work-life balance. When you work from home it is easier to take small breaks of time in between tasks to do things you enjoy.

This could be spending time with your family or simply taking a moment to relax.

You also save time by not having to commute to an office day.

More productivity

Working remotely gives individuals the ability to maximize their productivity. When you work from home, you can remove many of the distractions that normally accompany an office environment. Without these distractions, the quality and output of work grow.

There are plenty of online tools available for remote workers to maximize their productivity.

How to Start a Career In Digital Marketing

Landing a work from home digital marketing position doesn’t have to be a struggle. Here are some steps you can take to start a career in digital marketing, even if you have no experience.

Understand the digital marketing landscape

In this video, you’ll learn what digital marketing is and how it works.

The first step is to understand the digital marketing job market and what a digital marketing career would look like.

You need to know which areas of digital marketing are in demand right now and which ones are gaining popularity. Visit popular job boards and search for digital marketing jobs.

This will also help you see the requirements for certain types of positions and how much they pay.

Choose a specialization

Once you understand the basics of digital marketing and the available opportunities, you need to choose a specific focus area.

If you enjoy writing and creating content, you can pursue content marketing. If you are more creative, you can go for social media marketing where you can design graphics and help craft the brand’s image.

After you know what area you want to focus on, you can begin building the necessary knowledge and skills.

Take a course and learn

You can start a career in digital marketing even if you do not have a college degree. In this situation, the best way to gain the digital marketing skills needed to be successful is to take a digital marketing course.

A quality digital marketing course will help you get a thorough understanding of digital marketing quickly. Many courses also provide a marketing certification upon completing the course.

You can use this certification to add to your resume or LinkedIn profile to validate your skills to potential employers and clients.

Start a website to build your skills

Knowledge will only get you so far in digital marketing. You need to practice and develop your skills to ensure that you can drive results in real life.

The best way to do this to start your own digital marketing blog. This will allow you to develop many of the skills needed throughout different areas of digital marketing such as keyword research, content strategy, copywriting, and web design.

A digital marketing blog can help increase your authority and improve your personal brand. When looking for digital marketing positions, you can point recruiters to your website to show you know how to put knowledge into action.

Apply for entry-level and freelance positions

After you have practiced your skills, you can begin looking for entry-level jobs and freelance positions.

There are plenty of places to find open positions whether it’s a traditional job board like Indeed or a freelance website like Upwork.

Tools to Help You Work Remotely as a Digital Marketer

The wide array of available business software solutions has made it much easier for teams to work together remotely.

Let’s examine some of the tools that allow you to work from home efficiently as a digital marketer.

Slack

Slack is a communication application for teams. It is particularly useful for remote workers.

You can use Slack through your web browser, desktop app, or mobile app. There is a built-in video conferencing software you can use to conduct virtual meetings.

With Slack, you can create channels for different teams or projects. You can also start private chats and group chats.

Slack provides direct integrations for other important apps including Google Calendar, Google Drive, Zoom, Jira, Salesforce, and more.

Skype

Skype is a communications application that allows individuals and groups to make free video and voice calls. The app also has a chat interface for text-based messaging.

You can sync Skype on all your different devices to ensure that you are never missing any important updates from your remote team.

Zoom

Zoom is a video conferencing tool that allows remote teams to have virtual meetings and audio calls with themselves and customers or clients.

Users can share their screen with other meeting participants. You can also record the video calls on Zoom for when you need to access the information again later. The link to the replay can be shared with other participants.

Zoom is free to use but you can unlock more functionality with a paid plan.

Google Workspace

Google Workspace, formerly known as G-Suite, is a suite cloud-based suite of business tools. It provides a centralized hub for accessing different Google applications such as Google Docs, Google Sheets, Google Slides, and Gmail.

Applications like Docs and Sheets are the Google equivalent to the suite of Microsoft Office programs. With these apps, remote teams can collaborate online, inside the same document.

Paypal

If you work independently either as a digital marketing freelancer or by running your own agency, you’ll need a way to bill your clients and manage your invoices.

With Paypal, you can easily request money for the services you’ve performed. You can send an online invoice which your clients can then pay with their card or through their Paypal account.

Paypal integrates seamlessly with other applications such as accounting software like Quickbooks.

Where Can You Find Remote Digital Marketing Jobs

With more people working at home, it has never been easier to find listings for remote digital marketing positions.

There are a variety of different online job boards you can use to find open positions. Some are dedicated solely to remote listings, others are broader and will require you to filter by location.

Here are some of the best places to find work from home opportunities for digital marketing:

AngelList

AngelList provides a job board curated with open positions at startup companies. The board is popular among tech companies but you’ll also find businesses from a diverse range of industries.

There are typically plenty of marketing positions available.

You can easily add a location filter to your job search to only show listings for remote positions.

You can apply for open positions directly on AngelList. You’ll have the opportunity to submit a resume and personalized message to the startup’s founder with each application.

Remote.co

Remote.co gathers the top remote job opportunities from a variety of sources and lists them on their website.

The job board covers all professions and there are always plenty of high-quality digital marketing positions on the list.

You can filter the listings based on a specific interest such as SEO, PPC, social media, etc.

When you click on a listing, you will land on the employer’s site where you can submit an application.

We Work Remotely

We Work Remotely is one of the most popular online job boards for remote positions. You’ll find listings for all major areas of digital marketing.

When you click to apply for a position, you’ll be taken to the company’s external site where you can complete the application.

Indeed

Indeed is more of a traditional online job board. It lists available jobs from all over the world, both in-person and remote.

To find high-quality work from home digital marketing jobs, you can perform a search for the specific function you are looking to work in (e.g. SEO). In the location field select Remote.

This will filter the results so that only work from home positions appear.

Key Learnings

Digital marketing is a rewarding career that offers many benefits. This includes:

Great opportunities for career growth
Solid pay
The ability to build a useful set of skills
The ability to work independently
Freedom to think both creatively and analytically

Arguably the biggest advantage to a career in digital marketing is the ability to work from home. Most digital marketing tasks can be completed online so many companies and agencies choose to let their employees work from home.

Some of the more popular work from home digital marketing positions are:

SEO specialist
PPC specialist
Content specialists, marketers, and managers
Social media specialists, and managers
Digital marketing specialists
Copywriters

Businesses whose employees work from home can benefit from:

Lower overhead costs
Improved productivity
More diversity
A better work-life balance for employees

You can start your work from home digital marketing career by taking the following steps:

Understand the digital marketing job landscape
Choose your digital marketing specialty
Take a digital marketing course
Create a digital marketing blog
Apply for entry-level and freelance positions

There are plenty of tools that make it easier for digital marketers to work from home. This includes communication software like Slack and collaborative software like Google Drive.

There are also plenty of online job boards dedicated solely to remote listings, making it easy to find a work-from-home position.

The post Can a Digital Marketer Work From Home? appeared first on reliablesoft.net.

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Featured snippets went missing but have now returned; Friday’s daily brief

Featured snippets went missing but have now returned; Friday’s daily brief

Search Engine Land’s daily brief features daily insights, news, tips, and essential bits of wisdom for today’s search marketer. If you would like to read this before the rest of the internet does, sign up here to get it delivered to your inbox daily.

Good morning, Marketers, what is going on with the featured snippets in Google Search?

As you know, Google has been pushing displaying featured snippets in its search results for years and years. When it first launched, publishers were scared that it would result in less visibility and clicks to their web site. But now, if you have a featured snippet, losing it can be devastating to your traffic.

Around February 19, Google started to show significantly fewer featured snippets in its search results. Then, last Friday, March 12, featured snippets returned to normal levels. Here are charts from Moz, RankRanger and Semrush showing the featured snippet saturation levels in the Google Search results by day:

Google offered no clarification on what occurred here but I guess we can assume there was a bug that occurred on February 19th and then it was resolved on March 12th? Did you notice? How did this impact your traffic? Please let me know on Twitter @rustybrick – I am curious if you saw any impact to your Google traffic as a result of this. 

Barry Schwartz,
Featured snippet editor

New feature lets you manage your reviews in Google My Business

Now you can easily manage your reviews in a new location within Google My Business. This new feature not only lets you report issues with reviews and issue takedown requests for some reviews, it also lets you check the status of previous takedown requests. Just a heads up, if you manage a lot of businesses and reviews, this tool might not work for you.

You can see a full step by step review of this tool here.

Video SEO best practices from Google

Google published some new help content and video around best practices for video SEO. First, there is a new video, what Google calls a “lighting talk”, on the topic of video SEO best practices by Danielle Marshak, Product Manager at Google. Second, there is an updated help document section on video SEO best practices.

The video goes over how Google indexes videos, the signals it picks up from videos to understand them, where they appear in Google and a list of SEO best practices for videos.  

Google also updated its help documentation for the video best practices section. The new documentation goes over how to help Google find your videos, ensure they can be indexed, allow Google to fetch your video content files, enable specific video features and remove, restrict, or update your videos as needed.

Read more here.

Words in URLs, browser extensions and local home-based businesses

Words in your URLs. We all know that using keywords in your URLs can help a bit with rankings in Google search. But did you know that once Google indexes the content of that page, those words in that URL are worth a lot less in terms of rankings? John Mueller said that recently in a video hangout.

Browser extensions messing with your core web vitals. Are you concerned that browser plugins or extensions are going to hurt your core web vital metrics? Since browser extensions can change how a page loads, both in terms of speed and layout, Google may ding your super optimized page because of an extension that messed up your page. Addy Osmani from Google said on Twitter it is possible that extensions can impact your scores here. The truth is, that is probably not going to happen because, as John Mueller of Google said on Reddit, very few people install extensions on their mobile browsers.

Privacy concern for home businesses. To protect the privacy of home businesses, Google has an option to label your business as a service area business (SAB) in Google My Business.  Well, it seems like now, you can find the business on street view to locate the address of businesses that are labeled as service area businesses. We are hoping Google closes this loophole soon.

We’ve curated our picks from across the web so you can retire your feed reader.

7 Google SEO Tools Every Website Publisher Should Use – BruceClayA/B Testing: Take the Guesswork out of SEO – RyteDomain Splitting for Google Success: The story of About.com – Search MetricsGoogle’s tracking changes could be painful for marketers – DigidayThe Good, The Bad & The Ugly of Competitor Brand Bidding – Hallam

The post Featured snippets went missing but have now returned; Friday’s daily brief appeared first on Search Engine Land.

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Emergency WordPress Support

Emergency WordPress Support

Are you in desperate need of emergency WordPress support? If so, we fully understand that you are probably in a complete panic because there is something on your WordPress website that is not functioning as it should be and you need support quickly to fix it. Well first of all we would like to ask you to take a deep breath and have confidence that you stumbled onto a post that will get you the emergency WordPress support that you need.

We are the only true 24/7 emergency WordPress support company that can offer you immediate WordPress issue resolution when you need it. Are average resolved time here to get an issue that is troubling your WordPress website fixed is 30 minutes or less.

WOW 30 MINUTES OR LESS

You are absolutely not misreading what we are saying here. The average result time for emergency WordPress support is 30 minutes or less. This means that from the time you submit the issue that you need resolved, 30 minutes or less from that moment your website will be working smoothly again.

 This is how you will be at the end!

Our entire WordPress support model is based around the concept of being available 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Another major emphasis that is put on all of our Support Services here at WP fix it is to ensure that we have a speedy resolution for any emergency WordPress support a customer is in need of.

GENERAL SUPPORT – EMERGENCY WORDPRESS SUPPORT

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Our most popular support service which is our General Support is the likely selection when in need of emergency WordPress support. This service will react and give attention to any single WordPress issue a customer is experiencing on their website. The only issues that are not within the scope of our General Support service are Infection Removals and Speed Optimization issues.

INFECTION REMOVAL – EMERGENCY WORDPRESS SUPPORT

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If you are dealing with an infection on your website we have a very detailed Infection Removal Service which can get your WordPress website cleaned and secured immediately. The time it takes to fully clean and secure a website is dependent on how intense the infection is. On average an infection removal service can take a few hours to complete and we guarantee that it will be completed the same day it was purchased.

SPEED Optimization – EMERGENCY WORDPRESS SUPPORT

VIEW SERVICE

If you are dealing with an infection on your website we have a very detailed Infection Removal Service which can get your WordPress website cleaned and secured immediately. The time it takes to fully clean and secure a website is dependent on how intense the infection is. On average an infection removal service can take a few hours to complete and we guarantee that it will be completed the same day it was purchased.

WordPress dominates the content management system software of choice worldwide. With over 40% of the market share meaning that 4 out of 10 websites online are built with WordPress this is surely a powerhouse software which must be supported.

We want you to be confident that if you are in the need of emergency WordPress support we are the best company to service those needs. If you have any questions about any service that we offer feel free to comment below or for a quicker response use the live chat widget in the lower right-hand corner to engage our customer support representative.

 

 

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Fix Hacked WordPress Site – FAST and EASY!

Fix Hacked WordPress Site – FAST and EASY!

Fix Hacked WordPress Site Guided Steps

The very first thing that you should do is take a deep breath. We understand that having an infection on your WordPress website can be extremely stressful. Especially if the infection is causing your website to be inaccessible or perhaps it is redirecting visitors to another website that does not represent your online presence. Panic is never the solution to any WordPress problem. What is a better solution is to follow our easy steps that we are going to outline for you to get your website cleaned, secured and running smoothly again.

Now whether you feel like you are a very talented do it yourself-er when it comes to fixing WordPress issues or you are just a beginner and the whole idea of removing an infection from your WordPress website freaks you out either one will benefit from the information in this post.

If you would rather just spend your time doing something more productive and are looking for a service you can depend on and trust to remove your WordPress infection, you can click on the button below to see our service details which we can get started on right away.

WE CAN REMOVE YOUR INFECTION RIGHT NOW!!!

This very detailed service will make sure your WordPress site is fully cleaned and secured to prevent future infections. We will start cleaning right away.

SEE SERVICE DETAILS

Continuing on to Fix Hacked WordPress Site

So let us spend a little time summarizing the most simple breakdown of what a WordPress infection consists of and where the malicious files and or code is present in your WordPress site. Having a basic understanding of this will help you to more quickly establish what area is you need to focus on to get the infection removed and then take steps to secure your website to prevent any future WordPress malware attacks.

We like to say that WordPress is very similar to a human body. There are two things that a human body absolutely needs in order to live and function. Those two things are the heart and the brain. If either one of these things are not present in a human body, it cannot live and function. Now let’s take this analogy into a WordPress scenario. There are two things that are absolutely necessary in order for a WordPress website to function properly. These two things consist of the database and the files.

– THE WORDPRESS DATABASE –
The database is the area of your WordPress installation that stores all of your content and settings for the different functionality you are using on your website. A more simpler example of this would be the content for your pages and your posts. Another very common set of data that is stored in your database is all of the settings for your active theme or any other plugins that you have installed.

– THE WORDPRESS FILES –
The files portion of your WordPress installation consists of all of the actual files that are being used to not only load the WordPress software but also load and display the content on your website. Below are just a few of the main examples that exist in every single WordPress installation as far as the files.

WordPress Core Files
Plugin Files (active plugin(s) you are using)
Theme Files (active theme(s) you are using)
Uploads (images and other media you have added)

So now that we have had a short class on the anatomy of what makes up your WordPress, website we can dive into the steps to identify, isolate and remove any infectious code or files within your installation.

Scanning Time – Fix Hacked WordPress Site

The very first step that you would want to take is to identify what has actually been infected on your WordPress website. We would do this by running an infection scan. In some WordPress setups there could be thousands and thousands of files. Also the database could be extremely large. You cannot manually look at all of these files and database tables to identify what’s been infected. You need to rely on scanning software to do this portion of investigating any malicious files or code within your WordPress installation.

We have a FREE WordPress Malware Scanner Plugin that you can get immediately to scan all the files within your WordPress website and the database. See it in action below.

 

DOWNLOAD SCANNER FOR FREE

Take a look at another article we wrote below which will provide some other free WordPress infection scanning plugins that you can use to scan your website and identify the infected files and or database infections that exist.
https://www.wpfixit.com/wordpress-infected/

Now the scanning process is only doable if you can actually log into the administrative area of your website. Many times when you are dealing with a WordPress infection the access to the administrative area is not available. Your website is either completely down or any attempts to access any URL will redirect you to another spam or malware site. If this is the case, there is a different process that you must take in order to get you to a point where you can actually run a scan. Let’s examine those exact steps that you would need to follow if your website is not accessible.

No Site Access To Fix Hacked WordPress Site

So the process of addressing a WordPress infection if you do not have access to the website (meaning that you are unable to login to your administrative area) is a little bit more complicated but definitely something that anybody can do regardless of their skill level. We are going to try our hardest to make this as easy as possible so if you want to take the actions to clean up the infection on your WordPress website these are the steps to do so.

So the very first goal that we wish to achieve here is to be able to actually log into the administrative area of our WordPress website. Once we achieve this we will be able to install an infection scanning plugin like we mentioned earlier to scan all of the files and the database for our website.

The fact that you do not have the ability to log into your website means that you are either experiencing a completely broken website where the login page is not accessible or every time you visit a URL on your website it redirects to some type of spam or malware site. Let us focus on giving attention to the issue of the website being completely down and the login page is not accessible.

No Login Page – Fix Hacked WordPress Site

So if the login page is completely inaccessible this means that there is a problem with the files that your WordPress website is using to function. Through a process of elimination we will identify which group of files is actually causing the problem.

There are three main groups of files that make up your WordPress installation.
WordPress Core Files
Plugin Files (active plugin(s) you are using)
Theme Files (active theme(s) you are using)

If any of the files in any of the three main groups mentioned above are corrupted or contain some malicious code it can cause your login page to be inaccessible. Knowing this we now have two do some troubleshooting to isolate which group of files is causing the problem.

WordPress Core Files
This is actually the easiest of the three groups to rule out being the problem causing your login page not to be accessible. What you need to do here is remove all of the WordPress core files and reinstall fresh files. There is an absolutely amazing walkthrough article at the link below which will show you five different ways on how you can reinstall WordPress core files.
https://kinsta.com/blog/reinstall-wordpress/

After you have freshly installed WordPress core files check to see if you are able to access your login page and login to the administrative area of your WordPress website. If so this is good news because you now are able to install an infection scanning plugin to run a full and detailed infection or malware scan of your website to identify what files are infected and what infections may be present in the database. If you still do not have the ability to log into the administrative area of your WordPress website please continue on as we go and troubleshoot the next main group of files that make up your WordPress installation.

Plugin Files
So after you have completed a fresh install of WordPress core files and you still have no luck logging into the administrative area of your website it is now time to see if your plugin files are the reason you can not login. To do this and be certain that the plugins are the issue you simply need to deactivate them all but you are probably thinking how in the world can you deactivate all the plugins when you are not even able to log into your website. The good news is that we have an easy solution and two options that allow you to do this without having administrative access. Take a look at the link below for a detailed walkthrough that will show you two different ways that you can deactivate all of the active plugins on your WordPress website.
https://jonnyjordan.com/blog/disable-plugins-wordpress/

Once you have deactivated all the plugins it is now time to check and see if you are able to access the login page to your website and get into the administrative area. If you are able to login you are going to want to head over to the plugins page in the admin area of your website to ensure that all of the plugins have been deactivated.

If you deactivated all of your plugins by renaming the plugins folder, you will notice that you will not see any installed plugins inside of your administrative area. The next step would be to rename the plugins folder that you changed back to “plugins“. Now reload the plugins page in the administrative area of your website and you will see that the plugins are installed once again but they are all deactivated. Do not activate any of the plugins.

This would be when you install your favorite infection scanning plugin to scan all of the files and the database that make up your WordPress website. If you have gone through the steps outlined here to troubleshoot the plugins being the root cause of not being able to login to your WordPress administrative area and you still are unable to access your login page it is time to move on to the final main group of the files that make up your WordPress installation.

Theme Files
So we have fully exhausted troubleshooting the two main groups of WordPress files that make up your website. We have identified that there is no problem with the WordPress core files and all of the plugins that are installed and running on your website are not causing a problem stopping you from logging into your website. There is one final group of files that we need to check to be able to repair the fact that you are not able to login to the administrative area of your website. This would be the group of files that make up the active theme that you are using on your WordPress website.

The goal here is to turn off your active theme and then test the login page to see if it is working. If it is working then you have fully narrowed it down to the theme being the reason why you are not able to login to the administrative area of your WordPress website. The difficult thing here is that since you are not able to login you are going to have to take a different approach to turn off your active theme. The article at the link below will show you a variety of ways that you can turn off your active theme in order to isolate the issue of not being able to login to your website.
https://mediatemple.net/community/products/dv/360022440131/how-to-deactivate-a-wordpress-theme-for-troubleshooting

If this step did the trick then log into your website and install your favorite infection scanning plugin to run your detailed scan and identify all the infected files or malicious code in your database.

Login Page Working – Fix Hacked WordPress Site

So we talked about the above steps first with not having access to the administrative area of your website but if you are one of the lucky ones that are dealing with a WordPress infection and you can log into your website there is just a few simple steps that you need to take in order to identify what has been infected in your WordPress installation.

1. Install an infection scanner plugin and run a full scan
2. Capture the results of the scan for cleaning action

At this point in your attempt to fix a hacked WordPress site, you are now armed with a list of infected files and or infected entries in your database. Let us continue on as to what you need to do next to get these cleaned out.

Continuing on to Fix Hacked WordPress Site

We have identified what files and or database tables that contain infectious code on our WordPress website, we need to take the steps to either remove or replace these files and or database tables.

If you have done a good job of maintaining and using a productive backup and restore strategy you could save yourself a lot of time and effort and simply restore your website to a date before it was infected. This would save you so much agony instead of going through your list of infected files and or database tables to remove or replace what is needed. It is so important to always have a backup and restore strategy in place not only for situations like this but for the hundreds of other things that can go wrong when managing and maintaining a successful WordPress website.

Now if you do not have a backup that you can restore your website to you are going to need to manually clean the areas of your website that have been identified to be infected through the results of the infection scan that you did earlier.

Let’s go back to what we talked about earlier. The two items that make up the anatomy of your WordPress installation. Your database and your files. 

– THE WORDPRESS DATABASE –
The database is the area of your WordPress installation that stores all of your content and settings for the different functionality you are using on your website. A more simpler example of this would be the content for your pages and your posts. Another very common set of data that is stored in your database is all of the settings for your active theme or any other plugins that you have installed.

– THE WORDPRESS FILES –
The files portion of your WordPress installation consists of all of the actual files that are being used to not only load the WordPress software but also load and display the content on your website. Below are just a few of the main examples that exist in every single WordPress installation as far as the files.

WordPress Core Files
Plugin Files (active plugin(s) you are using)
Theme Files (active theme(s) you are using)
Uploads (images and other media you have added)

Time TO Clean – Fix Hacked WordPress Site

If the infection scan that you completed returned results showing that you have database tables that are infected you will need to address that by using your phpMyAdmin interface. Below is a very detailed article showing you exactly how to use this interface to access and adjust database tables within your WordPress database.
https://www.elegantthemes.com/blog/resources/a-quick-guide-to-phpmyadmin-and-how-you-can-use-it

We do hundreds of WordPress infection removals each month since 2009. In the majority of these infection cleanups that we perform for WordPress users, the database itself does not contain infectious code. Most hacked WordPress sites will have the malicious code directly in the files rather than the database. As you may already know there is a large list of infected files that were identified when you completed your infection scan.

Use this list to go through and remove the infected files or replace the files that have had injected code added to them. Once you have gone through this list of infected files and either removed or replaced the files, you will then run another detailed infection scan to confirm that there is nothing remaining within your WordPress installation. 

We understand that this entire topic and all of these steps may be overwhelming for some. We have tried our best to make it as simple as possible and always welcome any comments you may have to clear up something that you may be stuck on during the process of removing an infection from your WordPress website. Please use the comment section below to ask those questions and also below you can see that we offer a service which can remove your infection right away. We wish you well and want to reinstate again what was said at the beginning of this post that there is no need to panic.

Happy and SAFE Word-pressing!

WE CAN REMOVE YOUR INFECTION RIGHT NOW!!!

This very detailed service will make sure your WordPress site is fully cleaned and secured to prevent future infections. We will start cleaning right away.

SEE SERVICE DETAILS

The post Fix Hacked WordPress Site – FAST and EASY! appeared first on WP Fix It.

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10 Common SEO Mistakes to Small Business should Avoid Making

10 Common SEO Mistakes to Small Business should Avoid Making

Just 30 percent of small business owners say they have an SEO strategy in place. There are plenty of reasons business owners don’t invest in an SEO strategy.

They may think SEO isn’t all that important. They may think they can “do it themselves,” even if they have to learn on the go.

Not having a strategy or learning on the go often leads to mistakes, though. Mistakes with SEO are one of the top reasons people don’t see the results they want. In turn, business leaders may believe SEO “doesn’t work” or decide not to invest in it.

If this sounds like the situation in your business, don’t panic. Watch out for these common SEO mistakes, and you’ll be well on your way to creating an effective SEO strategy.

1. Missing the Mark With Keywords

In the past, search engine optimization was not much more than choosing a keyword and running with it. As search engines have become more sophisticated, though, so too has SEO.

Some people will tell you keywords are out, but they still play an important role in good SEO. The trick is using them the right way.

One key is choosing strong keywords. Make sure to do your research here, so you can rank for terms your customers are actually searching for. You might want them to look up the trademarked name of your product, but they’re more likely to do a generic search.

You’ll also want to look for long-tail keywords and search phrases. These are more popular with voice searches. People also use full sentences to search more often.

Negative keywords can also play a role in determining your rank. Keeping an eye on competition is also important.

Finally, make sure you avoid keyword stuffing. Using a keyword too often will almost guarantee your SEO will not work.

2. Ignoring Technical SEO

People who say SEO has moved on from keywords aren’t technically wrong. Today’s SEO is far more complex and takes into account much more than keywords.

Some aspects of today’s SEO focus on the technical. This includes features like:

SecurityWebsite speedImage optimizationSchema markup

The technical aspects of your website don’t outweigh the importance of providing quality content. However, they do affect user experience. That’s why they’re important for your SEO.

By improving security or website speed, you give site visitors a better experience. That, in turn, influences your SEO ranking, because Google wants to direct users to websites that provide good experiences.

3. Missing Title Tags and Meta Descriptions

One of the most common mistakes with SEO is not providing title tags and meta descriptions. Why is this information so important?

Title tags and meta descriptions are part of your content’s metadata. This information tells the search engine’s crawlers what the content is about. When you provide title tags and meta descriptions, Google is more likely to rank your page higher for the “right” kind of searches.

It may seem like extra work to provide this data, but it’s a very quick task that can give your SEO an extra boost.

4. Focusing Only on On-Site SEO

You might think you can only control what’s on your website. After all, it’s not like you can go to Google and change anything there.

Or can you? By focusing only on on-site SEO, you’re missing opportunities to improve your ranking.

Google doesn’t pay too much attention to social media, but it does factor in the algorithm. YouTube results are particularly important to Google. Bing puts more emphasis on social media in its rankings.

Google also pays attention to your Google My Business page, so it’s a good idea to set one up and keep it up to date. You’ll also want to keep track of reviews and respond to them.

Finally, you can also influence Google’s snippet and page description by providing a meta description.

5. Linking Mistakes With SEO

Linking is a staple of SEO, but it’s also one of the most common areas to make mistakes. Having no links is a problem, as is having too few links.

Internal links and external links are both important to your content. The area most people focus on is inbound links, which are links back from other sites. Google ranks these by authority, so it’s a good idea to try and get links from well-respected websites.

That can be tricky to do, of course, so people will engage in all sorts of “bad” behavior. Some people buy backlinks, while others join link-trading programs.

Using proper links and getting high-quality backlinks is a much better strategy.

6. Not Optimizing for Local and Mobile Search

With more people using mobile devices, it’s key to optimize content for these devices. Google now uses mobile-first ranking, so being mobile-ready is crucial for your SEO.

Another aspect of the move to mobile is the rise of local search. People are searching on the go, so they’re looking for local businesses. They’re conducting more “near-me” searches as a result.

That’s a huge opportunity for most small business owners. Optimizing for local SEO is a smart move for any business leader.

7. Not Sticking to a Schedule

You’ve heard about the importance of providing quality content. You also know it takes time to put together a quality blog post or video. With everything else on your plate, it can be tough to find the time to create content.

Trying to stick to a schedule can be even more difficult. Regular blog posts or a schedule for video posts are important for both your SEO and your audience.

The Internet is a big place, with billions of websites. If you’re not updating your content on a regular basis, people are likely to forget to check in with you.

Search engines also favor “fresh” content, for a few reasons. It ensures they’re sending their users somewhere with current information. It also means you’re likely still in business and able to respond to further questions the user has.

That makes for a much better experience for your audience. It also keeps them engaged and entertained. If it’s possible, stick to a schedule and watch your audience grow.

8. Writing for Robots

One of the biggest SEO mistakes of all is forgetting who you’re really writing for. Many content creators focus on meeting the requirements of the search engine algorithm.

If you look at the evolution of Google’s algorithm, though, you’ll notice a common pattern: Google tweaks the algorithm to better reflect what its users want to see in a page.

What does that mean? At the end of the day, you’re still writing for a very human audience. Google likes longer content because long-form content is more likely to provide a comprehensive answer.

Google’s requirements for website speed also come from user preferences. Users are likely to abandon websites that take more than two seconds to load. Google demands fast websites because your audience demands fast websites.

Remember that when it comes to creating SEO content. Yes, you should be aware of the different factors that go into optimizing a piece for search engines. However, your audience is still the people who visit your site, so make sure you provide content that answers their questions.

9. Falling Behind on SEO Trends

If SEO is part of your digital marketing strategy, then one of the most important things is to stay up-to-date. If you’re using SEO tactics from two or three years ago, you may find you have limited success.

That’s because SEO has to keep evolving. As search engines tweak their algorithms, what works and what doesn’t work changes. Even a tactic that was working six months ago may not work now.

For that reason, it’s important to stay up to date with the latest trends. One way to do that is to use technology. The team behind an SEO plugin will be working hard to keep the plugin current with algorithm changes.

You can also do some reading and connect with the experts to discover the latest news.

10. Forgetting to Measure the Metrics

Finally, you won’t ever see the benefits of SEO if you don’t take stock of the metrics. Is your SEO strategy working or not? It can be tough to tell without the numbers in hand.

While the goal is to rank your content higher in search engine results, there are other metrics you’ll want to watch. Increased traffic might be one.

By measuring the metrics, you can prove SEO is working. From there, you can continue to improve your strategy.

Doing SEO the Right Way

Mistakes with SEO are fairly common, but most of them are easy to correct. Watch out for these 10 and you should see better results with your SEO.

Ready to get better SEO? The right tools can help you develop a better strategy and supercharge your SEO.

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