Month: May 2011

I Believe I’ve Just Found the Best WordPress Plug-In Ever!

Okay, I admit that any discussion of “best” WordPress plugin is somewhat subjective and strongly related to the needs of individual WordPress users. But for anyone who has to manage multiple WordPress sites on multiple servers, I think I’ve just found the best WordPress plugin ever. This is an especially powerful tool for SEO professionals who rely on WordPress CMS for their own or clients’ sites. Actually, it’s a combination of a plugin and cloud program provided by www.manageWP.com. For users with more serious security issues, there is also a downloadable version that you can run off your own server. In a nutshell, www.manageWP.com is a multi-blog manager. It takes advantage of WordPress’ own structure to create a WordPress dashboard that connects blog managers with multiple blogs. By my rough preliminary estimate, our team will probably slash our time spent managing WordPress sites by 15% to 25%! No more multiple logins. We no longer have to go and log into separate WordPress dashboards. No more multiple passwords. Along with the preceding, we won’t have to keep track of the separate passwords we use for each WordPress account. Faster plugin installs. We can now install or update plugins all at once, across multiple WordPress blogs — instead of having to do it for each blog. Faster theme installs. Changing and updating themes is also easier. And although I recommend having separate...

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New Google Advisor Offers Great Promise for Consumers and Strong Brands – for SEOs and Small Guys, Not So Much

Google just launched its new Google Advisor, and as a consumer, I have to say that I’m very impressed. It’s just offering a few financial products, but the simple, efficient design is very refreshing. It gets right to the point and highlights the main points most of us would be interested in as we shop for higher bank deposit rates and lower mortgage interest rates. Google Advisor also offers a trend line so we know where rates have been the past three months… and where they may be headed. Select one of the featured products and Google Advisor takes you to a comparison page that lets you sort the listed providers and plans by what really tickles our fancies. Yes, you can sort by rates, points (for mortgage loans) and annual fees (for credit cards). But you can also sort by APRs and projected monthly payments. Next time I’m in the market for the best rates on a mortgage loan, CD, savings account, checking account or credit card, I’ll be sure to stop by Google Advisor. However, I can’t help but wonder what this means for SEOs. I don’t think Google Advisor will mean the end of SEO professionals, but there’s a good chance that Google Advisor, if it really takes off, will siphon off many of the online consumers who are already in the buying stage. That would leave “researchers”...

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The Future of SEO Just Got Clearer — and More Messy

My daily evening ritual while riding Amtrak’s Hiawatha Line to my new home, is to scan my Google Reader feeds and several newspapers. One article in the Chicago Tribune caught my eye: Ashton Kutcher is reported to be in talks to replace Charlie Sheen on the CBS show Two and a Half Men. As I read the article (http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/sns-rt-television-kutchern12106690-20110513-story,0,7581453.story), I was mildly amused by the reporter’s comment that Kutcher’s 6.7 million Twitter followers will help the CBS show stay atop the ratings. But what really got me was the last paragraph of the article which mentioned that Kutcher tweeted: “I’m starting to become convinced that people put my name in articles just to improve their SEO…” This reminded me of that old investing adage, “if your cab driver is offering you investing advice, it may be time to get out of the market.” By no means am I saying that search engine optimization (SEO) professionals should abandon the field. But this quick tweet made me realize that SEO has gone mainstream! Traditional marketers are scrambling to master it, while every business owner and entrepreneur looking to the web demand it — without fully understanding what SEO truly entails. Just as the mainstreaming of stock investments swamped the market with day traders and lay investors, the SEO industry and search engine landscape will soon be flooded with digital marketers dreaming...

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