WordPress for Business is the Number 1 Reason I Use WordPress.org

Wordpress DeveloperI work only with the open-source WordPress software from WordPress.org. I don’t touch the WordPress.com stuff that’s advertised as a “Free” website source because frankly you just can’t adapt it into a WordPress for business website. I’m not talking about customization to make it pretty or to ramp up it’s functionality with plugins (and it’s pretty low on that too!). It boils down to being weak on the business side of business website.

  1. You Can’t Run Ads. That’s right you can’t make money advertising other people’s products or services. If you’re thinking about becoming an affiliate advertiser for Amazon.com – it ain’t happening. If you decide you want make some extra do-re-mi by placing Google Ads on your site — Nope. Not Allowed.
  2. You Can’t Sell a Product. You can’t sell your widgets, golf balls, or books. Even if we’re talking crafts like clay bowls, beaded necklaces, or knitted scarves—you won’t be able to set up a shop or a method of collecting payments. The Sell Products. There is no shopping cart plugin (you’re not allowed to install plugins). That means best you can do is get yourself ANOTHER website where you can collect payments and then direct people to that site. UGH. YUCK.
  3. PayPal is A No-No. Who in their right mind denies the use of PayPal? Well a free WordPress.com website does. If you’re a non-profit (NOT a business) you can have a donation button. That’s it. And if you think Google Wallet would be an alternative… sorry that too and all the other payment services are nixed by WordPress.com.

WordPress.org is the more “benevolent” side of WordPress. They actually do give away the software for free—you get the software and you can use it on your own hosting account and either you or you with the help of a WordPress web designer like Design to Spec, can customize the heck out of the site, and more importantly you can get down to making money with your business website!

Economy sucks? Read “How to Regain Your Sales Mojo”

I still hear complaints that the economy is a slump. The Goldman Sachs hearings in Washington, DC aren’t helping to warm up a feel-good environment for business. My client Susan Salvo of the Revenue Generators LLC has a dose of good advice for the sales person. “How to Regain Your Sales Mojo”, published in the Hartford Business Journal … check out the home page of the Revenue Generators website.

Where Do You Get Your News?

If you want to know what is current, watch iCarlyon Nickelodeon. If you aren’t watching it… believe me your kids or grand kids are! The story lines are mostly slap-stick comedy and pre-teen issues, but it is relevant. Here’s a gem of a line: Question “Who reads newspapers?” Answer: “Hobos and old people.” So which are you?

For the New York Times lifestyle-section-and-a- crossword fan that probably sounds sacrilegious and, ah hem, politically incorrect.  Unfortunately, if you haven’t embraced the New Media you may have already been relegated to the bottom rung of the information ladder.

So, where do you get your news? Once you consider how you get your news you’ll know where your customers are getting theirs!

  • Traditional News Sources are time tested and trusted news sources, like the BBC, where you can subscribe to their RSS feed. You get all their news delivered to your favorite feed reader. Other news services, like CNN, give you your own account on their website and you choose which news subjects you want to feed new stories and updates to read online.
  • Want Ads were the bread and butter of the printed press. Traditional media has been rocked not only by the dawn of free online news services, but the shift to free advertising on the Internet. Have you heard of a little website called Craig’s List?
  • Social Media or what is also called New Media are internet based news sources that allow a reader to discern the news they want to read. The reader is now in charge of what combination of content they want to read. They can select to receive news feeds on specific subjects like Perez Hilton’s celebrity blog http://perezhilton.com. The reader can get news from specific sources like company blogs, for example Google’s blog http://googleblog.blogspot.com. Perhaps the most interesting change in news is that social media now allows you to keep up with news as intimate as a circle of friends on Facebook or get news from the community you do business with, keeping up with snow days, learning about new products, receiving information about special offers.

We know that you are neither an old fuddy-duddy nor are you a hobo (but you knew that!). You’ve proven that by reading this blog post online.  When you’re ready to become a news source for your business news or your area of expertise, call Design to Spec or email us. We’re here to help you get comfy with Internet marketing.

TIP: How to Put a Press Clipping on a Website

What do you do when you get great press in a traditional newspaper?

That’s a really good question because journalism and traditional media is undergoing a huge transition, mostly due to the ease of obtaining free news on the web and their advertising revenues lagging due to new free want ads sources like Craig’s List. Hence the demise of giant’s like the Boston Globe.

When you are managing a website or posting to a blog you have three choices of how to display your good press.

The News Clipping. Simply cut the article out of the paper and scan it. The digital file can be embedded as an image on a web page or a link to it can be added. But beware. Large news institutions like the New York Times are protective of their copyrighted material and may require you to pay a “use fee” to display the article on your website or blog. One client who got particularly generous press coverage in the NY Times found that there was a steep (close to $1000 per year) fee to display the article and Times logo on their website. The best advice is to check with the publisher to find out what they will allow and what they will charge.

Link to News Site. Another solution is to link directly to news articles on the newspaper’s own website.  The pitfall of this strategy is that many newspapers, in order to generate revenue newspapers are only leaving articles accessible to the public for a short time. Using direct links to a news article works well for postings that have short duration like in Twitter, Facebook, and even though blog entries have the possibility to stay online “forever” direct links are OK there too.

Link to Buy. Many newspapers have adopted the strategy to sell their news archive. News archives are searchable online, but you will seldom be able to read the whole article. Archives can be read only after becoming a “member” or opening an “account” with the newspaper. Articles and reprints can be obtained for a fee.

Quote Sparingly. Remember those old reviewer quotes on movie ads? “The best movie of all time….” “…thoroughly enjoyed!” Even if you can’t easily use the whole article pick a short, glowing quote and give the author and publisher just credit!