Last sunday evening I started taking questions on my Facebook page, and I promised to answer them in a blog post here, so here we go:
- If I have just made changes to my WP site, does it help to toggle the cache plugin?
Absolutely. My SEO plugin force refreshes the cache because otherwise people start emailing me that stuff doesn’t work when it works perfectly. On sites with more traffic though, you could also just leave the cache as is and wait it out a bit.
- How do I move a WordPress site, changing its permalinks but keeping the social numbers counts (post tweets/likes/shares)?
The answer to this is an unfortunate but resounding: you don’t. I’ve written a tutorial on moving WordPress to a new domain quite a while ago, but you simply can’t keep those stats. All the more reason to think long and hard about moving domains…
- My buddy Richard thought he was funny, and asked: How much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a wouldchuck could chuck wood?
The answer is simple, of course: a woodchuck would chuck as much wood as a woodchuck could chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood.
- Will you be focusing on wordpress for the rest of your life? If not what do you think will be the reason why you change your focus?
- What is the best practice to SEO a WordPress.com site? Is it even possible?
Of course there are things you could do on a WordPress.com site, some themes there are better than others and you can do a whole lot content wise. The minute you start asking questions like that though, you should really consider getting a self-hosted WordPress.org install and taking control of your own destiny. You’ll reach a point where you’ll want to do more and WordPress.com doesn’t allow you to do that and the longer you wait, the harder it is to move, so, move now.
- When do you think that WordPress is going to completely rewrite their code base so it’s an actual CMS instead of a hacked together glorified blogging system?
I find I get that question quite a lot and it annoys me. WordPress is being rewritten all the time. Check out the development that happens on Trac. Most of the people who ask questions like that haven’t had a decent look at the codebase for ages. WordPress IS way more than a glorified blogging system already and if there are specific issues you have with the way it’s coded, patches are welcome!
- If you start working on a WordPress blog for a client and there are no plugins installed, which ones do you always install?
A couple: my own WordPress SEO & Google Analytics plugins, W3 Total Cache and usually Gravity Forms. Of course each site is different so there’ll be more plugins after that depending on that site’s and site owners needs and wants.
- What do you think has more value? A good domain name or good link building?
Good link building, any day, every day. You see, domain names, especially so called “exact match domain names” are bound to be devalued at some point. Good link building will always create traffic to your site, just from those links alone, so that’s always worth while. Those links also bring in rankings but in really good link building, that’s often just a side effect. I recently talked about Eric Ward’s mailing list, you should check out that post.
- Your SEO plugin places a canonical tag on every generated page and I have an ongoing argument with a co-worker about that. He says that this tag should only be on pages that contain duplicate content and that it is intended to ‘tell’ the searchbot where to look for the original content. Googling around doesn’t clarify a lot. Could you please tell your reasons behind placing it on every page?
I get this discussion a lot. The thing is, if I was 100% sure that a URL could only be accessed through that specific URL with no query parameters added, I might not add a canonical. There’s nothing against it, but it’d just be a bit cleaner. However, these URLs:
Are essentially the same for a WordPress install in 99% of the cases. However, they’re not the same for Google and other search engines. So, if I wouldn’t add canonical, the link value of the second URL would be waisted and, in fact, you’d have a competing duplicate content URL in the search results. That’s why I add it to all pages.
- I noticed you don’t use a comment system like disqus or intense debate. Would be nice to hear your thoughts about whether we should or should not use a comment system in WordPress.
If I were to use a comment system, I’d use Facebook comments. The benefits of that and the fact that it gets way less spam are quite high. So far I’ve decided not to do that yet because a couple of my regular visitors and active commenters actually don’t have Facebook accounts. Also, my comment redirect plugin doesn’t work with those systems, which I think is a pity.
I’ll say one thing: the amount of work I have to do to keep this blog spam free is nothing short of ridiculous. Read this post to see what I mean.
That’s it, what do you think, should I do this more often?