Author Archives: Ileane

Basic Blog Tips for New Bloggers

After one year I started BASIC BLOG TIPS!My anniversary gift is Basic Blog Tips!

Today is the one year anniversary of Ms. Ileane Speaks! The year went by quickly and it seems like I spent a great deal of it learning how to blog.  The first road block came with the realization that WordPress and WordPress.com are NOT the same thing.  Since I’m using WordPress.com here at Ms. Ileane Speaks, I constantly struggle to find tutorials strictly for WordPress.com!

Lynda.com To The Rescue

Lucky for me, I gained access to a 30-day free pass to the Lynda.com online learning library. Right away I completed the module called WordPress.com 2.7 Essential Training and wrote the post 5 WordPress Secrets You Need To Know. But more importantly, a seed was planted and I felt the need to share what I learned.

Blogger vs. WordPress.com

I soon discovered that Google offers free blogging software that rivals WordPress.com so I established Ms. Ileane’s Blog. It started out as a challenge from my friend Kissie to prove the superiority of WP, yet I was surprised to learn that arguments can be made on both sides. First and foremost, I was able to easily access TONS of tutorials, tips, themes and hacks dedicated to using Blog Engage Vote ButtonBlogger.

Basic Blog Tips

Basic Blog Tips Logo

After one year of learning the ropes of using free blogging software I decided to acquire a domain and hosting provider as a gift to myself.

I’m super excited to tell you that Basic Blog Tips is now open for business!

The goal of Basic Blog Tips is to provide one central location to find tips, tutorials and resources for WordPress.com AND Blogger users. I want this site to be the one I was looking for this time last year.  Happy Blogging Anniversary to me!

But Basic Blog Tips is  also my gift – to you.

UPDATE: Currently the most popular post on Basic Blog Tips by far includes a video tutorial and it’s called Install CommentLuv on Blogger

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SEO for WordPress via Stephan Spencer on WordPress.tv

SEO Help for WordPress

Blog Engage Vote ButtonFrom the start, I’d like to commend Automattic for being open to the dissection of the SEO strategies used on the WordPress.com home page. It’s quite brave of them to feature this critique during a public session of  WordCamp San Diego. Yet keep in mind, I am certain forward-thinking Matt Mullenweg and his WordPress team consider this tutorial to be one that each of us will benefit from.

Next, I’d like to speak to the authority of the presenter, Stephan Spenser. It’s not too often that I like to use the term “expert” when describing someone, especially in the realm of SEO, but given the fact the Stephan has co-authored a highly regarded book on the topic he’s a rare exception to that rule. The Art of SEO is published by O’Reillly and includes insights from Stephan along with collaborators Eric Enge, Jessie Stricchiola and Rand Fishkin.

Stephan’s first challenge for the WordPress.com webmasters is aimed at the poorly optimized navigation of the site. Although text links appear at the bottom he quickly points out how the abundance footer links get “somewhat discounted”. Then in what I find a surprising move he compares the site to the Yahoo! home page pointing to Yahoo’s strong navigation links which lead to high positioning on Google search results.Wordpress.com site

Stephan demonstrates the use of Google Adwords Keywords Tool which is also favored in the Lynda.com tutorial on “Performing Keyword Research”. He show how optimal results from the Google Adwords Keyword Tool can be achieved by changing the match type to “exact” which is another crucial tactic stressed by both Stephan and Jill Whalen in the Lynda.com SEO training series. In the case of WordPress.com, Stephan suggests that the sought after keyword should be “blog” rather than “free blog”.

SEO Best Practice

Stephan continues to address the gaping holes in the SEO strategy of the WordPress.com site, and at the same time he instructs us all, through the use of specific examples which can be easily translated into our own individual SEO best practices. Stephan does a tremendous job of cramming a vast amount of information into this 7 minute lighting session including:

  • Tag and Category links
  • CTR – Click Through Rate
  • Inbound links
  • Yahoo! Site Explorer
  • Link Authority
  • Anchor text
  • Canonical URL’s
  • Duplicate Content

Slides for the presentation are available on SlideShare.

I’m impressed with this episode of WordPress.tv and the SEO strategies that Stephan suggests. What do you think? How can you apply these tactics to your own site?

Introducing WordPress 3.0 (via WordPress.tv)

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Thelonious Has Arrived

The release of WordPress 3.0 is called Thelonious, named after the great jazz musician Thelonious Monk. It’s a game changer in many ways. By far the most impressive aspect of 3.0 is the integration of WP MU or Multi-user, which is no longer a stand-alone download and morphs into – Multi-site. WordPress 3.0 Multi-site will allow multiple sites (or blogs) to run on a single installation of WordPress – including BuddyPress. Watch the video from WordPress.tv for a sampling of the new changes.

Read More

via WordPress.tv

Matt Mullenweg’s Take

In a more detailed video presented by WordPress.tv, Matt Mullenweg (co-founder of WordPress) discusses the past, present and future of WordPress.

The WordPress 3.0 download counter updates to the current number of downloads of Thelonious. To upgrade your current installation of WordPress to 3.0, simply go to your admin panel and click “upgrade”; it’s that simple!

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Top 5 Social Media Extensions for Chrome

Vote on Blog EngageGoogle Chrome is quickly becoming the browser of choice and will most likely dethrone Firefox in terms of user sentiment, speed and security but let’s not forget about the growth of the Chrome extensions library. Although Firefox continues to be favored by webmasters, Chrome is gaining acceptance in the mainstream as users escape the grasp of Internet Explorer and embrace the security of  Google’s sandbox powered browser Chrome.

Paired with the success of Google Buzz, developers are paying close attention and quickly issuing extensions for Chrome that rival Firefox and incorporate quick access to Buzz, Gmail, Google Docs and of even the good old-fashioned social networking tool Twitter.

Tweetmeme

Tweetmeme extension for Chrome is a handy tool for sharing to your Twitter stream. It’s most often used for websites that don’t display the Tweetmeme button or if you simply can’t find the Tweetmeme button on the page. One thing I’d like to suggest to Tweetmeme is that they make it easier to cut or copy the text of the tweet. Most of the time I’d like to paste the tweet into HootSuite and schedule it for another time. By the way, if you have the Tweetmeme plugin running on your blog, check out my Hub Page on how to customize the Tweetmeme plugin settings.

My Shortcuts

I found out about this extension on Madras Geek’s blog and it is quickly gaining in popularity. What I like about My Shortcuts is that you can add custom URLs to gain quick access to your blogs or additional social profiles. The defaults take you to Gmail, Buzz, Contacts, Tasks, Docs, Reader, Voice and include additional options for creating new email and new documents.

Symtica

Symtica provide more comprehensive access to your Google accounts like Gmail and includes Google Analytics, YouTube, Blogger, Picassa and a host of others including your favorite and mine Webmaster tools (just kidding).

I’d like to see Symtica and/or MyShortcuts provide access to my AdWords and AdSense accounts to make the my life just a little simplier.

Google Buzz Button for Shareaholic

This extension is devoted solely to Google Buzz and the Buzz Button for Shareaholic will display the Buzz count of the page you’re visiting.

Google Mail Checker Plus

I first mentioned this extension in Web Browsers – What’s Yours? and it’s become one of  my favorite extension for monitoring Gmail and Buzz. Google Mail Checker Plus displays the count of unopened mail and allows you check and view your inbox without ever opening Gmail. Here’s a quick screencast to demonstrate.

Please follow me on Google Buzz and sign up for blog updates via email.

Now it’s your turn, I’d love to learn what extensions you’re using for easy access to social media? Do you use any blogging extensions for Chrome?

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Buzz Besties – BuzzerList, Bit.ly Quick Tip, Blogger Bon Voyage

Image representing Google Moderator as depicte...

Image via CrunchBase

This post lists a few highlights from Google Buzz from the previous month. The list includes the best buzzes, and buzzers that I found in my Buzz stream during the month.

Now it’s your turn to share  your “Buzz Besties” for the month.Blog Engage Vote Button

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Find Fonts on Your Computer

Blog Engage Vote ButtonFinding the right font to use on a project just got a little easier.  This is a quick post to tell you about Flipping Typical.
“A way to explore the popular typefaces you have on your computer”.
Once you are on the Flipping Typical site, at the top of the screen type in the words you want to see and Flipping Typical will generate a display that allows you to preview those words in a sampling of the different typefaces available on your computer. It’s fun to play with this site and it just might come in handy if you want to quickly pick typefaces to use on your email signature, a blog post, logo, banner or advertisement. Here is an example of what my name looks like in some of the fonts I have on my computer. Notice that it is important that I use the correct font because my name starts with an I.
If I use Arial it looks like my name starts with a lower case “L”, but in the Georgia font the capital “I” looks great!

Flipping Typical Screenshot

Check out Flipping Typical and find some fonts to play around with, then stop back here and let me know what you found.

Smooches!

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Web Browsers – What’s Yours?

Internet Explorer Mobile

Image via Wikipedia

What’s your favorite web browser?

How often you search the web, and what you’re using the internet for – are most likely the key factors impacting your choice of browser. If you’re a novice, it’s quite possible that you may not even know that different browsers exist. You know enough to easily find the blue icon with the letter “E” and a yellow swoosh around it and you’re quite happy with that. You might even be aware that Internet Explorer is the most popular browser found on home and office PC’s around the world.
Bloggers, designers, developers, webmasters and other more advanced web users eventually explore more savvy browsers including the most popular ones from Firefox, Safari, Google Chrome and Opera. Similarly, cellular phone or mobile users will find “mini”, mobile or android versions of the same popular PC and Mac browser alternatives.

How do I know which web browser to use?Blog Engage Vote Button

The simple answer to the question of which browser to use is – Try them all and pick the one you like. Hey the good thing about browsers is that you can use more than one. Right now I’m using Google Chrome but I also open Internet Explorer to access my work email account from Microsoft’s Webmail service. If you’re a blogger I recommend that you at least give Google Chrome a try.

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