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How to Scan Your WordPress Site for Potentially Malicious Code


Often we get asked by our users, is there a way to scan your WordPress site for potentially malicious code? The answer to that question is YES, YES, and YES. There are both free and paid tools available to scan your WordPress site for potentially malicious or unwanted code. Usually, malware and malicious code can go unnoticed for a long time unless you regularly scan your website. In this article, we will show you how to easily scan your WordPress site for malware and potentially malicious code.

How to scan a WordPress site for malware and suspicious code

When To Scan Your WordPress Site for Malware and Malicious Code?

The best time to scan your WordPress site for malware and malicious code is now. Many beginners don’t install a WordPress security scanner right away, this means that a malware or malicious code injection can go unnoticed for a long time.

Many users don’t notice anything until some telltale signs make them suspicious. See our list of common signs that your WordPress site is hacked.

Even if your WordPress site is not hacked or affected, you should still learn how to scan your WordPress site for malicious code. It will help you protect your website against future attacks.

Most importantly, you can improve WordPress security to protect your WordPress site like a total pro (it doesn’t require any technical skills).

That being said, let’s take a look at how to thoroughly scan your WordPress site for potentially malicious code.

1. Sucuri

Sucuri free WordPress plugin dashboard

Sucuri is the industry leader in WordPress security. They are a paid service but offer limited WordPress scanning feature for free.

To quickly scan your website, you need to install and activate the free Sucuri Security plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

The plugin checks your WordPress files to see if they are changed. It also scans for possible malicious code, iframes, links, and suspicious activity.

The real value comes from their paid plans which come with the best WordPress firewall protection. Their DNS level website application firewall blocks any suspicious activity or malware even before it reaches your website.

We recommend using a DNS level website firewall because it is more effective. Sucuri firewall also serves your website static content through their own CDN which gives you a significant performance boost and improves WordPress speed.

Most importantly, if your website gets affected, then Sucuri experts will clean your website at no additional cost. Cleaning a hacked WordPress site is quite difficult even for experienced WordPress users. Knowing that you have real security experts available to clean your website is a huge peace of mind for business owners.

We use Sucuri on our website. To learn more see our complete Sucuri review.

2. Wordfence

Wordfence scan

Wordfence is another popular WordPress security plugin which allows you to easily scan your WordPress site for suspicious code, backdoors, malicious URLs, and known patterns of infections.

It automatically scans your website in the background, and you can also manually initiate a scan at any time.

You will be able to see the progress of the scan in the yellow boxes on the scan page. Once the scan is finished, Wordfence will show you the results.

It will notify you if it found any suspicious code, infections, malware, or corrupted files on your website. It will also recommend actions you can take to fix those issues.

Wordfence also comes with an application level firewall. This firewall helps you prevent brute force attacks and hacking. However, it runs on your website which makes it a little less effective.

For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install and setup Wordfence security in WordPress.

3. Anti-Malware Security

Anti-Malware Security

Anti-Malware Security is another very powerful WordPress security plugin which can help you to scan WordPress for malicious code and malware.

The plugin looks for suspicious code, scripts, .htaccess threats, backdoors, and known-patterns of infections in all folders and files of your website. It performs a comprehensive scan which may take a while to finish.

The plugin author actively maintains definitions which means that they are continuously improving to detect new threats as they are discovered.

Keep in mind that the plugin may show a lot of potential threats which are actually false positives. You will have to manually compare those files to source files which could be a lot of work.

It also includes a firewall option. The firewall is actually a software level firewall which is less effective than a DNS level firewall.

How to Clean up Malware or Suspicious Code in WordPress?

Clean up hacked WordPress

The first thing you need to do is to immediately change all your WordPress passwords. This includes your WordPress user accounts, WordPress hosting account, FTP or SSH user accounts, and your WordPress database password.

This ensures that if one of these passwords was compromised, then the hackers will not be able to use it to regain access.

Next, you need to create a complete WordPress backup by either using a plugin or manually through phpMyAdmin and FTP. This step ensures that if something happens during the cleanup, you can still revert back to the infected state of your website.

After that, we recommend hiring a WordPress security professional to clean the website for you. We recommend Sucuri, each of their paid plans include malware removal service. Even if your website is already affected, they will clean it for you.

You can also try to clean it yourself. It is difficult work and may take a lot of your time. Stay calm and follow the instructions in our step by step guide on how to fix a hacked WordPress website for beginners.

We hope this article helped you learn how to scan your WordPress site for malware and potentially malicious code. You may also want to see our guide on fixing a backdoor in a hacked WordPress site.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The post How to Scan Your WordPress Site for Potentially Malicious Code appeared first on WPBeginner.





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How to Properly Move Your Blog from Tumblr to WordPress


Do you want to move your Tumblr blog to WordPress? WordPress is the most powerful website builder and blogging platform in the world. I gives you complete freedom to build any type of website that you want. In this article, we will show you how to properly move your blog from Tumblr to WordPress.

Moving from Tumblr to WordPress

Why You Should Move Your Tumblr Blog to WordPress?

WordPress is the most popular blogging platform in the world. It powers more than 32% of all websites on the internet.

To learn more about WordPress and what you can do with it, please see our complete WordPress review with pros and cons.

There are two types of WordPress. First, there is WordPress.com which is a hosted platform, and then there is WordPress.org also called self-hosted WordPress. To understand the difference, please see our comparison of WordPress.com vs WordPress.org.

We recommend using WordPress.org because it gives you the freedom to build any kind of website. It also gives you access to all powerful WordPress features out of the box.

Things You’ll Need to Move Tumblr to WordPress

To start with WordPress.org, you’ll need a domain name and a web hosting account.

We recommend using Bluehost. They are an officially recommended WordPress hosting provider, and one of the largest hosting companies in the world.

They are offering WPBeginner users a free domain name, free SSL Certificate, and discount on hosting. Basically, you can get started for $2.75 / month.

→ Click Here to Claim This Exclusive Bluehost Offer ←

If you can spend a little more, then we recommend SiteGround. They are also an officially recommended WordPress hosting service.

Note: Both Bluehost and SiteGround don’t allow hosting of adult content on their servers.

If your Tumblr blog contains adult content, then we recommend HostGator. They are also in our list of the top WordPress hosting companies.

Once you have purchased hosting, the next step is to install WordPress. Most hosting providers offer 1-click WordPress installation. If you cannot find the option, then ask your hosting company, and they will install WordPress for you.

Alternately, you can follow our step by step guide on how to install WordPress to do it yourself.

After installation, you’ll reach the WordPress dashboard screen which looks like this:

WordPress dashboard

Moving Your Content from Tumblr to WordPress

First, you need to visit Tools » Import page and click on the ‘Install Now’ button below Tumblr.

Installing Tumblr importer

WordPress will now fetch and install the Tumblr Importer tool for you. Once it is done, click on the ‘Run Importer’ link to continue.

Run Tumblr importer

On the next screen, you’ll need to provide OAuth Consumer and Secret keys. These keys allow your WordPress site to connect and import your content from Tumblr servers.

To get these keys, you need to click on the URL shown on the screen, which will take you to Tumblr website where you need to click on the ‘Register Application’ button.

Register app

Next, you need to fill in the ‘Application Name’, ‘Application Website’, ‘Application Description, and ‘Default Callback URL’ fields. All the rest can be left blank.

For the website and default callback URL fields, you need to your WordPress site’s full URL. You can use anything you want for the Application name and description.

Register application

Once you are done, click on the Register button at the bottom to continue.

Tumblr will now register the application and return you to the application dashboard. From here you can copy the consumer key. You need to click on the ‘Show Secret’ to reveal and copy the secret key.

Copy keys

You now need to go back to your WordPress admin area and go to Toools » Import page and run the importer again.

You can enter the keys you copied earlier in the importer settings and click on ‘Connect to Tumblr’ button.

On the next screen, you need to click on the ‘Authorize this application’ button.

Authorize application

This will take you to Tumblr where you will be asked to allow the app to connect with your account. Click on the Allow button to continue.

Allow app

Next, you’ll be redirected back to your WordPress site, and the importer will now show your Tumblr blogs. Simply click on the ‘Import this blog’ button next to the blog you want to import.

Import your Tumblr blog

The importer will now start importing your content from Tumblr to WordPress. This may take some time depending on how much content you have.

Once finished, you will see the success message.

Import finished

You can now visit the Posts and Pages sections of your WordPress blog to see your imported content.

You can also visit your WordPress website to see how the posts are displayed on your live website.

Redirecting Tumblr Visitors to Your New WordPress Blog

Now that you have imported the content, you would want your Tumblr visitors to be able to find your new blog.

To do this, you need to edit your Tumblr blog’s theme. First, go to the Tumblr settings page.

Tumblr Settings

After that click on your blog name to open its settings.

Select your blog

This will open your blog settings. On this screen, you need to click on the ‘Edit theme’ button to continue.

Edit theme

Next, you need to click on the ‘Edit HTML’ option under theme name. This will allow you to edit the HTML code of your Tumblr theme.

Edit HTML of your Tumblr theme

Tumblr will now show you the HTML code of the theme.

First, you need to paste this code snippet right after the <head> tag.

<!-- Inside head -->
<meta name="description" content="this is a legacy blog page, and will redirect to the same post on my new blog">
<script type='text/javascript'>
   var new_slug = window.location.pathname;
   var new_root = "http://example.com";
   var new_url = new_root + new_slug;
   document.write("<link rel="canonical" href="" + new_url + "">");
</script>

Don’t forget to replace the example.com with the actual URL of your new WordPress blog.

After that, you need to paste this second piece of code right after the <body> tag.

<!--Inside of <body> -->
<script type='text/javascript'>
    window.location = new_url;
</script>

You can now click on the ‘Update Preview’ button and then click on the ‘Save’ to store your settings.

This code will send your Tumblr visitors to your WordPress site. However, users coming to a specific page or post will see a 404 error. That’s because the URL format of Tumblr and your WordPress site are different, so you will need to redirect users to correct posts.

Setting up Redirects in WordPress for Your Tumblr Posts

To set up redirects in WordPress, first, you need to install and activate the Redirection plugn. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, you need to visit Tools » Redirection page to configure settings. Under the ‘Add new redirection’ section, you need to add redirection using regular expressions like this:

Source URL: .*/post/d+/(.*)

Target URL: /$1

After that check the ‘Regex’ checkbox and then click on the ‘Add Redirect’ button to save your settings.

Setting redirection

That’s all, your Tumblr blog posts will now redirect to the correct article on your new WordPress blog.

Congratulations! You have successfully moved your blog from Tumblr to WordPress.

Things to do After Moving from Tumblr to WordPress

Now that you have moved your content from Tumblr to WordPress, you may want to explore WordPress, learn the basics, and take advantage of this powerful platform.

Following are a few pointers to help you get going.

Set up a WordPress theme

The first thing most users want to do after moving to WordPress is to change their blog’s design. WordPress comes with thousands of free and paid WordPress themes to choose from.

Here are some of our expert picks of the best WordPress themes for different kind of blogs.

Need help setting up a new theme? See our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress theme.

Installing WordPress plugins

Next, you would want to take advantage of WordPress plugins. WordPress plugins are like apps for your WordPress site and allow you add new features to your website like adding a contact form, installing Google Analytics, adding membership features, and more.

However, choosing the right plugins can be a bit overwhelming for new users. That’s why we have compiled a list of essential WordPress plugins that you can install.

Learning WordPress

WordPress is quite easy to use and manage. However, there is a learning curve involved whenever you start with a new platform. This is where WPBeginner can help.

WPBeginner is the largest free WordPress resource site for beginners. We have lots of helpful content which is created specifically for beginners, business owners, and bloggers.

Following are few of the helpful resources you will find on WPBeginner (all of them are completely free).

  • WPBeginner Blog – The central place for all our WordPress tutorials and guides.
  • WPBeginner Dictionary – Our WordPress glossary will help you quickly familiarize yourself with the WordPress lingo
  • WPBeginner Videos – New WordPress users can start with these 23 videos to master WordPress.
  • WPBeginner on YouTube – Need more video instructions? Subscribe to our YouTube channel with more than 120,000 subscribers and 11 Million+ views.
  • WPBeginner Blueprint – Check out plugins, tools, and services we use on WPBeginner.
  • WPBeginner Deals – Exclusive discounts on WordPress products and services for WPBeginner users.

Many of our users use Google to find answers on WPBeginner by simply adding ‘wpbeginner’ at the end of their search term.

We hope this article helped you move your blog from Tumblr to WordPress. You may also want to see our actionable tips to drive traffic to your new WordPress blog.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The post How to Properly Move Your Blog from Tumblr to WordPress appeared first on WPBeginner.





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19 Amazing Holiday Gift Ideas for Bloggers, Designers & Developers (2018)


Are you looking for gift ideas for bloggers, designers, developers, or just a more technically savvy friend? Ideally, you would want to choose a gift that is useful for your loved ones. In this article, we have hand-picked the best holiday gift ideas for bloggers, designers, and developers.

Amazing holiday gift ideas for bloggers, designers, and developers

1. Airpods

Airpods

Airpods are wireless Bluetooth earbuds made by Apple for their newer iPhones. These are extremely nice and compact which makes it excellent for travels. The microphone feature is surprisingly good for handling calls while traveling. Airpods are an excellent gift item for anyone but specially your tech savvy friends.

2. Logitech BRIO Webcam

Logitech BRIO Webcam

Logitech BRIO Webcam is an ultra HD 4K capable webcam with easy to clip mount that works on any computer. The video quality is superb and works really well even in low light. It is perfect for video conferencing, Skype calls, or live streaming. For the security conscious folks, it comes with built-in security cap so there is no need to tape your webcam lens.

This is an excellent gift for bloggers, developers, and designers.

3. R2-D2 App-Enabled Droid

R2 D2 Droid

This app enabled R2 D2 Droid is a great gift for Star Wars fans out there. It comes with authentic movements, which are controlled by the app. Equipped with LED lights and built-in speakers, R2 D2 is the perfect companion to binge watch Star Wars saga. For the young programmers, R2 D2 is fully programmable, and you can run your own commands to modify its behavior.

4. DJI Mavic Pro 2

DJI Mavic Pro 2

Drones are the ultimate toy for anyone interested in technology, photography, and computers. This DJI Quadcopter is the best drone camera on the market. It is a state of the art machine that combines cutting-edge engineering, technology, and photography. Ultra HD 4K camera, extended flight time, and a wide range of accessories make it the perfect gift.

5. Dell USB 3.0 Ultra HD/4K Triple Display Docking Station

Dell Display Docking Station

This awesome device by Dell connects a laptop to up to three additional monitors, various external devices and the Internet with a single cable. It is a must-have accessory for users who use their laptops particularly MacBooks with external monitors. Newer MacBook models only come with USB 3.0 ports, so this docking station makes it easier to connect Macbook with multiple displays and external devices.

6. Herman Miller Embody Chair

Herman Miller Embody Chair

Sitting for hours each day can be very bad for an individual’s health. Herman Millar Embody Chair is designed to enhance health, improve focus, and provide ergonomic support for people who sit more than 4 hours a day.

While it’s expensive, our founder Syed Balkhi swears it’s the best chair in the market, and the price is totally justified.

This chair comes in various styles and colors. It is a great gift for bloggers, developers, designers who work from home and spend the large part of their day working on computers.

7. SmartDesk

SmartDesk

Even with the best chair, prolonged sitting can tire you out. Standing desks like SmartDesk allow you to break the habit, keep healthy, and remain productive throughout the day. It is fully electric and easily adjustable up to a height of 51 inches.

8. KINGOM 7 Storage Compartments

KINGOM 7 Storage Compartments

KINGOM’s Storage Compartments is a beautiful desk organizer made of high-quality PU leather with stiched detailing. It has 6 divided compartments to organize pen/pencil, scissors, remote control, cell phone, cards, and more. It also has a small-notched supply drawer, which pulls out to hold 4 by 4.5-inch notepads.

9. Star Trek Bluetooth Communicator

Star Trek Communicator

For all those Trekkies out there, this communicator device is highly accurate and created from 3D scans of the last known hero prop. It is fully functional and easily pairs with any Bluetooth compatible mobile phone. You can use the classic flip action to answer calls on the device. It also includes 20 authentic voice clips and Star Trek: Original Series communicator sound effects.

10. Bose QuietComfort 35 Series II

Bose QuietComfort

Headphones help many bloggers and developers work more efficiently. Bose’s QuietComfort comes with three levels of noise cancellation for better listening experience in any environment. It has built-in Alexa voice controls, noise deducting microphones, and hassle-free Bluetooth pairing.

This is one of the best and most comfortable headphones in the market. It will make an excellent present for anyone who travels or works remotely.

11. iRobot Roomba

iRobot Roomba

iRobot Roomba is a robot vacuum cleaner that roams around your house vacuuming the surfaces. It comes with WiFi connectivity, intelligent sensors to find its way around, accepts voice commands via Alexa and Google Assistant. It can run for 90 minutes and then it automatically finds its docking station to recharge itself.

12. Avantree Bamboo Mobile Docking Station

Avantree Bamboo Mobile Docking Station

Avantree Bamboo Mobile Docking station is a 10 port and 100W docking / charging station for multiple devices. It has a QuickCharge 3.0 port for faster charging, USB C port, and 8 smart USB ports. It has a safe adapter that you can plug into a wall socket and charge all your devices at once.

13. Facebook Live Kit

Facebook Live and videos shot in selfie mode are great for creating highly engaging content. If your loved ones are doing Facebook Live videos using their phones, then they will love these gifts.

GripTight GorillaPod Stand PRO

GripTight GorillaPod Stand PRO

GripTight GorillaPod stand is a multi-functional tripod for cell phones. It works with any smartphone and its adjustable legs can be used to attach it to any surface. It is a must-have accessory for any video makers or photography enthusiasts.

CamKix Wireless Camera Shutter Remote Control

CamKix Wireless Camera Shutter Remote Control

CamKix’s wireless camera shutter allows you to easily operate camera shutter on your phone with this Bluetooth remote control. It works with all mobile phones and comes with a wrist wrap so you don’t lose it while making videos.

QIAYA Selfie Light Ring

QIAYA Selfie Light Ring

This USB chargeable selfie light ring adds that perfect lighting your selfie and videos are missing. It attaches to any smartphone and is designed to optimally lighten up your face.

14. WPBeginner Family of Products

WPBeginner Family of Products

WPBeginner family of products include some of the internet’s most popular tools that help small businesses grow and compete with the big guys.

Books From Syed’s Shelf

Books are the kind of gift that keeps giving. Here are some of the books from our founder and CEO Syed Balkhi’s bookshelf.

15. Atomic Habits by James Clear

Atomic Habits by James Clear

Changing habits is an issue that we all struggle with. In this book, author James Clear offers a proven framework for improving just a little bit every day. The author of the book is one of the world’s leading experts on habit formation. In this book, he describes practical strategies that will teach you exactly how to form good habits and break bad ones.

16. Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days by Jake Knapp

Sprint

Problem-solving is what most entrepreneurs do to grow their business every day. Sprint offers a transformative formula for testing ideas that work. It is an excellent read for startups, bloggers, developers, and almost any individual or organization that wants to grow fast without crashing.

17. Who by Geoff Smart and Randy Street

Who by Geoff Smart and Randy Street

Hiring people for your business is a challenge. In this book, author Geoff Smart and Randy Street provide a simple, practical, and effective solution to hiring successfully. It makes a excellent gift for startup founders, entrepreneurs, and small business owners.

18. Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business by Gino Wickman

Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business by Gino Wickman

As businesses grow they tend to fall under similar problems. Traction explains The Entrepreneurial Operating System®, a practical method used by more than 2,000 companies for achieving business success and avoiding common mistakes.

19. The Dhandho Investor by Mohnish Pabrai

The Dhandho Investor by Mohnish Pabrai

Want to invest your money smartly? The Dhandho Investor explains the Dhandho capital allocation framework used by the business savvy Patels from India and presents how they can be applied successfully to the stock market.

We hope this article helped you find some good holiday gift ideas for bloggers and developers. You may also want to see our guide on how to start a WordPress blog with step by step instructions.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.





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What’s New in WordPress 5.0 (Features and Screenshots)


WordPress 5.0 was released just a few hours ago. It is the first and the only major WordPress release of 2018 with a whole new set of improvements and some big changes. In this article, we will show you what’s new in WordPress 5.0 and which features you should try after updating your websites.

What's new in WordPress 5.0

WordPress 5.0 is a major release and unless you are on a managed WordPress hosting service, you’ll have to manually initiate the update.

Important: Don’t forget to create a complete WordPress backup before starting the update.

Introducing Gutenberg The New Block Based Editor

WordPress 5.0 comes with a completely new editor codenamed Gutenberg. It is a block-based editor which allows users to create beautiful layouts using content blocks.

New block-based editor in WordPress 5.0

The old WordPress editor was a simple text window. While it worked well, you had to use different approaches to add images, create galleries, shortcodes, video embeds, and other content elements.

The new editor replaces them with a streamlined writing experience where each content element is wrapped in a block. You can move them around the editor, change their settings, and create engaging layouts without writing code.

By default, it comes with several blocks to add most commonly used content elements. This includes blocks to add images, audio, video, photo gallery, cover image, lists, quote, media, text, buttons, and more.

Adding blocks to create content

Blocks come with their own toolbar and settings. Apart from basic formatting options, you can also change width, colors, and other attributes.

Block settings

Widgets are also included as blocs, so you can easily add shortcodes, recent posts, recent comments, categories, and archives.

If you relied on adding shortcodes to your articles, then you can continue using them as a block.

Widget blocks

The new editor also makes embeds much easier. Simply expand the embeds section under the add block button, and you will be able to see all supported embed options.

Adding embeds as blocks

This makes adding videos, tweets, and facebook embeds a lot easier. Each embed is its own block, so you can adjust their settings just like any other blocks.

Video embed

If you feel a bit distracted by the WordPress admin sidebar, then simply switch to the distraction-free full-screen mode. This will hide the WordPress admin sidebar, and you will have a lot more room to design your content.

Fullscreen mode in new WordPress editor

You will find all your usual post editing features neatly tucked under the sidebar. This includes publishing and saving options, permalink or post-slug, categories and tags, excerpt, and more.

Post settings in new WordPress editor

Create and Reuse Blocks

If you often add things with the same style or content, then you can now save them as reusable blocks to use later when needed.

Simply edit a block you want to make reusable. Once you are satisfied with it, click on the menu dots in the block toolbar and select ‘Add to reusable blocks’.

Reusable blocks

You will be asked to provide a name for this block. After that, WordPress will save this as a reusable block. You can find it under the Add Blocks button and reuse it in other posts.

Insert reusable block

Editing Existing Content After Upgrading to WordPress 5.0

WordPress 5.0 will not affect any of your old content, and you would still be able to edit older articles. When editing an older article, you will see your content wrapped inside a “Classic” editor block.

Editing old articles in new WordPress 5.0 editor

You can continue editing the article inside the classic block. You can also break it into multiple blocks which will allow you to use all the features of the new WordPress editor.

Can I Still Use The Old WordPress Editor?

Yes, you can use the old WordPress editor by simply installing and activating the Classic Editor plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Switching to the classic editor

Upon activation, the plugin will disable the new blocks based editor, and you’d be able to use WordPress with the old classic editor that you are used to. For more details, see our article on how to disable Gutenberg and keep classic editor in WordPress.

Twenty Nineteen – The New Default WordPress Theme

WordPress 5.0 ships with a new default theme called Twenty Nineteen. It is a versatile and minimalist WordPress theme that can be used to start a blog or make a website.

Twenty Nineteen

Twenty Nineteen is based on Gutenberg starter theme, which means it is fully compatible with the new WordPress editor. It offers a clean canvas with minimal distractions, which gives you the freedom to experiment with the new editor and create beautiful layouts for your WordPress posts and pages.

WordPress 5.0 Compatibility with Themes and Plugins

WordPress 5.0 brings a big change to how users create content using WordPress. It has been under development for quite some time, which provided plugin and theme developers enough time to test their products and add compatibility for the new editor.

Most essential WordPress plugins like WPForms and Yoast SEO are already compatible with WordPress 5.0 and the new editor.

All top WordPress theme shops have also made their themes compatible with the new editor.

However if a plugin or theme on your website is not working properly, then reach out to that plugin or theme developer and ask them to update it.

If you do not hear back from them, then you can temporarily disable the plugin / theme and find an alternative. Alternatively, you can install the Classic Editor until your favorite plugin / theme have switched over.

We hope this article offered you a good insight into what’s new in WordPress 5.0. We are particularly excited about the new WordPress editor and the new ways to create content in WordPress. What are you excited about?

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The post What’s New in WordPress 5.0 (Features and Screenshots) appeared first on WPBeginner.





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How to Install WordPress on your Windows Computer Using WAMP


Do you want to install WordPress on your Windows computer locally? Working with WordPress on your computer allows you to test new WordPress features, learn how to develop with WordPress, and make websites before migrating them to the live server. In this article, we will show you how to properly install WordPress on Windows using WAMP.

Install WordPress on WAMP

Why You Should Install WordPress on Windows?

Installing WordPress locally on your computer gives you a testing environment that doesn’t affect your live website or blog. A WordPress install on your computer is also referred to as local server or localhost.

Normally WordPress developers use local WordPress install to develop their plugins and themes. Beginner users can also install WordPress on their computers to learn WordPress, test new WordPress theme and plugins, and experiment without affecting a live website.

Note: If you install WordPress locally on Windows, then the only person who can see that site is you. If you want to make a website that is available to the public, then you need to have a domain name and web hosting. We recommend that you follow this guide on how to start a WordPress blog.

That being said, let’s take a look at how to properly install WordPress on Windows using WAMP.

What is WAMP?

WAMP, is a compilation of Apache web server, PHP and MySQL bundled for Windows computers.

All of them are separate open source software. However, installing them separately is not quite easy even for experienced users. Software like WAMP allow you to easily install them and have a working local environment within minutes.

Step 1. Installing WAMP on Windows Computer

First, you need to download the WAMP software and install it on your computer. Simply go to the WampServer website and click on the ‘Start Using WampServer’ button.

Start using wampserver

It will take you to the downloads section. You’ll see two versions here: WampServer 32 bits and WampServer 64 bits. You need to select the WampServer version that matches the operating system type of your Windows computer.

Download wampserver

To find out whether you are using 32 or 64-bit operating system, go to Control Panel » System and Security » System in your computer. There you will be able to see your operating system type.

Finding operating system type in Windows 10

Once downloaded, you can click on the wampserver execution file to run the installation. Make sure that you carefully follow the instructions on the installation screen.

Install WAMP

During the installation process, you need to define the location for the web browser. By default, it will be Internet Explorer. You can change that to Google Chrome or any other web browser by locating it in the Program Files of your computer.

Once installed, you can launch the WampServer to continue.

Step 2. Setting Up a Database for Local WordPress Setup

Next thing you need to do is to create a blank MySQL database. On launching WAMP, you’ll see a green WampServer icon at the bottom right corner of your screen along with other icons. Simply click on it and then click on phpMyAdmin (a web based application to manage MySQL databases).

Note: If the WampServer icon is red or yellow, then it means the services (Apache, MySQL, PHP) are not running. You need to start the services by clicking on the icon before setting up the database.

phpMyAdmin

It will take you to the phpMyAdmin login screen on your web browser. Simply enter the username: root and leave the password field blank. These are the default credentials to login into your localhost phpMyAdmin.

Login phpMyAdmin

Click on the ‘Go’ button to continue.

Once logged in, you need to click on Databases in phpmMyAdmin to create a new database for WordPress. It will ask you to choose a name for your new database (we named ours test_db). After that click on the ‘Create’ button.

Create a database

Your database is ready which means you can now install WordPress on localhost.

Step 3. Installing WordPress on Windows Using WAMP

The next thing you need to do is download the latest version of WordPress from the WordPress.org website. It will download as a zip file.

Download WordPress

You need to extract the zip file and copy the ‘wordpress’ folder.

Extract WordPress

Now you need to navigate to the folder where you installed WAMP.

In this tutorial, we installed WAMP in C:wamp64, so we’ll refer to that folder going forward. But keep in mind, it may be different for you depending on where you installed the program.

Paste the ‘wordpress’ folder into the C:wamp64www folder.

Paste WordPress folder to www

You can rename the ‘wordpress’ folder to anything you want, such as mysite, testsite, etc. This will be the URL of your local WordPress site, so be sure to choose something you’ll remember easily.

For the sake of this tutorial, we renamed the folder from wordpress to mysite.

Next, you can open the web browser and go to http://localhost/mysite/

First, it’ll ask you to select a language and then show you the database setup information. Once you have read it carefully, go ahead and click on the ‘Let’s go’ button to continue.

Database information

After that, you need to enter your database details like database name, username, password, host, and table prefix.

The database name will be the one that you entered in the previous step. In our case, we called it ‘test_db’. The username will be ‘root’, and you can leave the password field blank. You can also leave the database host and table prefix as-is.

Enter database details

Next, click on the ‘Submit’ button and WordPress will create a configuration file for you in the backend.

On the next screen, you will see a success message stating that WordPress is connected to your database, and you can proceed with the installation.

Go ahead and click on the ‘Run the installation’ button to continue.

Run the installation

It will take you to the welcome screen for WordPress. You need to add a title for your new WordPress website, choose an admin username, enter a strong password, and provide an admin email address.

Once you’re ready, click on the ‘Install WordPress’ button.

Welcome screen for WordPress

After the installation process is complete, you’ll see a success message. In the background, WordPress has created new tables in your database and it’s ready to use.

You can then proceed to your WordPress dashboard by clicking on the ‘Log In’ button.

Log in button

Congratulations, you have successfully installed WordPress on a Windows computer using WAMP.

Step 4. Enabling Pretty Permalinks in WAMP

The new version of WordPress doesn’t break your local site on changing the permalinks setting.

However if you still see the ‘page not found’ error on your pages after changing the permalinks from Settings » Permalinks in WordPress, then simply follow our guide on how to enable custom permalinks in WAMP.

Step 5. Troubleshooting WAMP Issues

WAMP is quite easy to use even for beginners. However, if you are unable to get it running, then the following troubleshooting tips would help.

Fixing the WAMP Skype Conflict

If you have Skype installed and running, then WampServer may not be able to work properly due to a conflict with Skype. The conflict is caused by both Apache and Skype using the same port 80. There is a simple fix for this problem.

Open Skype and go to Tools » Options. This will bring up a dialog box, from here you need to click on Advanced and then Connections.

Fixing the WAMP Skype conflict

Uncheck the box that says Use port 80 and 443 as alternatives for incoming connections. Save options and restart Skype.

Install Visual C++ Redistributable

WAMP needs Visual C++ Redistributable for Visual Studio 2012 to run. If you don’t have it installed on your computer, then you can download and install it from the Microsoft website.

Bonus: Migrating from WAMP to Live

We’ve also written a separate guide on how to move WordPress from WAMP local server to a live site. Hopefully, you’ll find it helpful when you are ready to deploy your local site to production.

Having a local server environment is great for learning and testing purposes. But remember, if you want to start a WordPress blog for other people to see, then you do not need to install WordPress on your computer. You need to install WordPress on a WordPress hosting provider.

We hope this article helped you learn how to install WordPress on Windows using WAMP. You may also want to see our guide on 18 most important things you need to do after installing WordPress.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The post How to Install WordPress on your Windows Computer Using WAMP appeared first on WPBeginner.





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15 Tips for Using Google Search Console to Effectively to Grow Your Website Traffic


Google Search Console is a powerful free tool created by Google to help website owners understand how Google sees their website. Unfortunately, most businesses don’t know how to effectively use the full power of Google Search Console to increase their website traffic. In this article, we will show you how to properly use Google Search Console to improve your website SEO and get more visitors.

Google Search Console guide to grow your WordPress website

What is Google Search Console?

Google Search Console is a free tool offered by Google to help website owners monitor and maintain their site’s presence in Google search results.

It provides essential marketing data that you need to start tracking from day one. It also alerts you about errors, security issues, and indexing problems that may affect your website’s search rankings.

You can use all this information in your WordPress SEO strategy to increase your website traffic.

The sad part is that most businesses don’t utilize the full power of Google Search Console because majority of them think that just adding their website to Google Search Console is enough.

There’s so much more that you can be doing.

If you’re not leveraging all of the powerful features that Google Search Console offers, then you’re missing out.

Luckily, we’re here to help. We have created this ultimate Google Search Console guide to help you grow your website like a Pro.

Note: Since this is a comprehensive guide, we have added a table of contents for easier navigation.

Setting up Google Search Console

Fixing Crawling Issues

Growing Your Website

Useful Google Search Console Tools

Step 1. Adding Your Website to Google Search Console

If you haven’t already done so, then you need to go ahead and add your website to Google Search Console. It is really simple and will only take a few minutes.

Simply go to Google Search Console website and click on the Start Now button.

Google Search Console getting started

You’ll be asked to sign in using a Google / Gmail account. Once logged in, you will need to enter your website URL.

Adding your site to Google Search Console

Now, remember that Google considers an HTTP and HTTPS as two different protocols. It also considers https://www.example.com and https://example.com as two different websites.

You need to make sure that you enter the correct URL of your website.

If you are unsure, then login to your WordPress admin area and go to Settings » General page. There you will see your website’s URL in the site address field.

Site address

After entering your website address, click on the ‘Add Property’ button to continue.

Next, you will be asked to verify ownership of your website. There are several ways to do that, but we will show the HTML tag method because it is the easiest one.

Verify your site using the HTML tag

Click on the HTML tag to expand it and then copy the code inside it.

Next, you need to install and activate the Insert Headers and Footers plugin on your WordPress website. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, go to Settings » Insert Headers and Footers page and paste the code you copied earlier inside the ‘Scripts in Header’ box.

Add HTML tag

Don’t forget to click on the ‘Save’ button to store your changes.

You can now go back to Google Search Console settings and click on the ‘Verify’ button.

Verify your ownership of the website

Google Search Console will now look for the HTML tag in your website code and will show you a success message.

Success message

That’s all. You have successfully added your site to Google Search Console. You can now click on the ‘Go to Property’ link to visit your Google Search Console dashboard.

Note: if Google Search Console cannot verify your website after you have added the code in Insert Headers and Footer plugin, then you need to make sure to clear your WordPress cache and try again.

Step 2. Setting up the Preferred Domain Name

Google considers URLs with www and without www as two different pages.

Now let’s suppose you use the https://www.example.com as your URL and someone links to your site as https://example.com, then Google will consider the link going to a different URL (not yours).

Since you cannot control how people link to your website, this could affect your site’s performance in search results.

The easiest way to fix this is by using the preferred domain setting in Google Search Console.

For that, you will need to switch to the older version of the Search Console. Simply click on ‘Go to the old version’ from the left column.

Switch to the old Google Search Console

Search Console will now load the older version.

To set preferred domain, you need to click on the gear icon and then select ‘Site settings’.

Google Search Console site settings

On the next screen, you’ll see three options for the preferred domain. The first option is to not set a preferred domain name which we don’t recommend. Below that, you’ll see your domain with www and without the www prefix.

You need to choose one that you used when submitting your site to Google Search Console. Remember this should be the same as the one you see in your WordPress settings page.

Don’t forget to click on the save button to store your settings.

Google will now use your preferred domain when following your site’s links and when showing it in the search results.

Step 3. Set Your Target Country

If your website is targeting audiences in a specific country, then you can explicitly tell Google to target users in that particular country.

Go to the old version of Google Search Console, and under the ‘Search Traffic’ menu click on ‘International Targeting’.

Target country

Switch to the ‘Country’ tab and then select the country you want to target.

Now, choosing a country doesn’t mean that your website will not appear in search results for other countries. If a page is relevant to audiences in other countries, then Google will still show it in the search results.

However, setting the target country helps Google understand your target audience and can potentially give you a slight SEO bump in local search results.

Step 4. Adding an XML Sitemap

An XML sitemap is a way for website owners to tell search engines about all the pages that exist on their website. It also tells search engines which links on your website are more important than others.

Adding an XML sitemap to your website helps search engines better crawl your website. While it doesn’t give you a boost in search rankings, it can definitely help search engines index your content more efficiently.

All you need to do is install and activate the Yoast SEO plugin. Upon activation, the plugin will automatically generate an XML sitemap for your website, and you can find it at the URL that looks like this:

http://example.com/sitemap_index.xml

Don’t forget to replace example.com with your own domain name. You can now submit this URL in Google Search Console.

Under the Google Search Console dashboard, click on the ‘Sitemaps’ from the left column and then paste the last part of the URL.

Add your sitemap URL

Click on the submit button to save your changes.

Google Search Console will now check your sitemap and use it to improve your website’s crawling.

Step 5. Connect Google Search Console to Google Analytics

Connecting Google Search Console to your Google Analytics account helps you analyze search console data in Google Analytics. This provides you with a new perspective on your top performing content and keywords.

If you haven’t already done so, then you will need to install Google Analytics on your WordPress website.

We recommend using MonsterInsights for that. It is the best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress, and it will automatically show your top keywords from Google Search Console in your WordPress admin area.

Google Search Console top keywords report

Now in order to connect Google Search Console to your Analytics account, you need to head over to Google Analytics dashboard for your website. From the bottom left corner of the screen, click on the Admin button.

Switch to Google Analytics Admin view

Google Analytics will now switch to the admin view. From here you need to click on the ‘Property Settings’ section and then click on ‘Adjust Search Console’ button.

Adjust search console button

On the next screen, you need to click on the Add button to select your website.

Add property

Analytics will now take you to Google Search console website showing you the list of all website you have added to the search console. Select the website you want to link to this Google Analytics property and then click on the save button.

Select your website

That’s all, you have successfully connected your Google Search Console data to your Analytics account.

You can now view the newly unclocked Search Console reports in your Google Analytics account under Acquisition reports.

Search console data in Google Analytics reports

The first report you will find there is the ‘landing pages’ report.

For each landing page, you’ll see the impressions (number of times a page appeared in search results), clicks, click through rate (CTR), and average position in the search results. Combined with that page’s analytics parameters like bounce rate, sessions, and pages per session.

Clicking a landing page will show you the actual keywords that brought users to this landing page.

Keywords for each landing page

Switch to the ‘Countries’ report and you will see countries listed in the same order.

Countries report for Search Console

The devices report will show you how your site performed in desktop, mobile, and tablet search results.

Devices report

Queries, are the most important of all reports among this data. It shows you the keyword data missing from your Google Analytics reports.

Queries and keywords data

Step 6. Finding and Fixing Search Indexing Issues

The most useful feature of Google Search Console is that you can troubleshoot indexing errors.

These errors can affect your search rankings by stopping the search engine from crawling and indexing the pages on your website.

You can easily locate these errors under the Coverage » Index report.

Index coverage report shows you which pages from your website are indexed by Google and which pages resulted in an error or a warning.

Index coverage report in Google Search Console

Scroll down and you will see the detailed list of all the errors. Clicking on a link will open the detailed view where you will also find the link to learn more about the error and how to fix it.

Viewing error details

Following are a few common indexing errors you may see:

  • 404 error – This error means that the crawler followed a URL and saw a 404 error.
  • Soft 404 error – This error occurs when the crawler sees a 404 error page but the page’s status code is sending a 200 (success) message to the browser.
  • Server error – This means that your website server timed out or didn’t respond. This could happen if your website was under heavy traffic, was under maintenance, or unavailable for any other reason.
  • Not followed – This error occurs when Google is not able to follow a content type. This could be a flash, javascript, iframe, or other resources that the crawler is unable to fetch.

Now let’s take a look at how to fix some of these crawl errors.

Fixing 404 Errors in Google Search Console

First, you need to keep in mind that not all 404 errors are equal. You can safely ignore some of them and only fix those that are actually an error.

For example, if you deleted a blog post and don’t want to redirect users to a newer post, then it is ok to let Google see a 404 error page. Google will eventually deindex that page if it keeps seeing the 404 error.

However, the reason Google wants you to look at those 404 errors is that you may not be aware of them. For example, you accidentally deleted something or forgot to redirect users to the new updated version of it.

Simply click on the error in the Index Coverage report, and it will show you all the pages showing that error. Carefully review the pages and if you see a page that shouldn’t be there, then copy its URL and open it in a new browser window.

If you see a 404 error page in your browser, then this means that you need to fix this page.

Now if it is a page that no longer exists, but you have a newer or similar version of it, then you would want to redirect users to that page. See our guide on how to set up redirects in WordPress.

However, sometimes 404 errors may occur due to a misconfiguration in WordPress permalink structure. To fix this, simply visit Settings » Permalinks and then click on the save changes button without changing anything.

Update permalink structure

Fixing Soft 404 Errors in Google Search Console

Soft 404 errors are a bit tricky to troubleshoot.

Basically, these errors occur when Google bot sees what looks like a 404 error document instead of content. However, your server is sending a 200 (success) code. Normally, your server sends 200 success code when a page is displayed without an error or redirect.

Soft 404 errors in Google Search Console

Click on the Soft 404 errors in the index coverage report to view the list of pages affected by the error.

Now you need to open the page in a new browser tab to see what’s happening. If the page displays correctly, then you can safely ignore the error.

On the other hand, if the page is showing a 404 error document, then you may want to investigate further.

Start by switching to the old Google Search Console and then go to Crawl » Fetch as Google page. Enter the URL you want to investigate and then click the fetch button.

Fetch as Google

Search Console will now fetch the URL as Google Bot, and you will see it listed below. Clicking on the URL will open it with the source code view where you will see the HTTP status code at the top.

Status code

Now if you want this page to show a 404 error, then it is not doing that correctly. On the other hand if this page is supposed to show something else, then you need to figure out why it is showing the 404 error document.

If the soft 404 errors you are seeing are caused by WordPress search function, then the easiest solution is to stop Google bot from crawling search URLs.

To do that you need to add the following lines to your robots.txt file.

User-agent: *
Disallow: /?s=
Disallow: /search/

Normally, Google Bot doesn’t crawl search URLs. However, some spammers are trying to spam Google search console reports by linking to search URLs with random strings. This way they hope you will see their link in your Search Console report and click on it.

If the affected URLs are not search queries, then you may want to redirect them to a proper page on your site.

Fixing Server Error in Google Search Console

Server Errors in Google Search Console are caused by a number of reasons. Most common of them is when your server times out during a crawl, throws an unexpected error or does not appear to be online.

Use the Fetch as Google Bot tool to make sure that the affected URL is working.

If it is working, then you can ignore the error. If you are on a reliable WordPress hosting provider, then most server errors would disappear automatically.

However, if you can confirm the error by visiting the URL, then there are a number of things you can do to fix it. See our list of most common WordPress errors guide to find a fix for the specific error message you are seeing.

Step 7. Finding and Fixing Security Issues

Security issues

Security issues not only stop Google from crawling your website, they could also cause a sudden drop in search traffic. Google may temporarily remove affected pages, show a warning to users, and/or drop a page’s ranking.

Security issues will be highlighted on the overview screen as you as login to your Google Search console account. The most common security issue is websites affected by malware and trojans. To fix this, see our guide on how to clean a hacked WordPress website for step by step instructions.

For more details, see our article on how How to fix a website after getting de-indexed by Google.

Step 8. Finding Manual Actions and Requesting Review

While security issues are automatically triggered, manual actions are the penalties that are imposed by human staff from the Google Search team after a careful review. If a manual action is taken against your website, then this is pretty significant and can immediately take away all your search traffic.

These manual actions usually occur when a website is involved in illegal activities, spamming, and other fraudulent or fishy activities.

Manual actions

Clicking on Manual Actions link will show you the actions in your search console report. You will also find detailed information about the issue that triggered it and how to clean it up.

Once you have removed the objectionable content, you can click on the request review button. Your website will be now reviewed and reconsidered by the Google Search team, and they can decide on removing the penalty.

Step 9. Using Google Search Console To Grow Traffic

Now that we have covered the technical bits, let’s get to the fun part of growing your website traffic by utilizing the data available in Search Console.

In this section, we will look into keyword data, find out your top performing keywords, and discover hundreds of potential keywords where you can easily rank and get more traffic.

We will also look at links and how to use them to improve search rankings.

Ready? Let’s get started.

Mining Keyword Data in Google Search Console

Keywords are the search terms users type in search engines to find information.

Marketers and website owners can optimize their content to target desired keywords and improve their chances of appearing on top in search results.

Previously, keyword data was available in website stats and analytics reports. Google encrypted that information in 2013 when they switched to HTTPS.

While that data is gone from Analytics, it is still available in your Google Search Console reports.

It gives you a full view of the keywords your website is ranking for, average position, and impressions (number of times your site appears for that keyword).

You can see this information in your Google Search Console reports under the ‘Performance’ tab.

Search Console Performance

On the top, you will see a graph of your website’s performance in search results. Below that, you will see the keywords data, which you can filter by position, impression, and click-through-rate.

Viewing your top keywords in Google Search Console

You can sort this data by clicking on any column or use the filter option to narrow down the results.

Filter keyword data by position

You can also switch to the Pages tab to see the performance of your pages in search results.

Pages in search performance

Clicking on any page in the list will filter the results for that page. You can then switch to the Queries tab to see the keywords bringing the traffic to that particular page.

Ok so now that we have covered how to browse and view this data. Let’s see how to actually use this in your SEO and content planning.

Finding Low-hanging Keywords Where You Can Easily Rank

A lot of your pages may be ranking on page 2 or 3 of the search results for many keywords. These are the keywords that you can easily work on to rank higher and get more traffic.

Let’s find out those keywords.

In your Performance report, click on the filter icon and then select Position. You’ll be looking for keywords where the average position is higher than 7.

Filter by position

Click on ‘Done’ to apply the filter.

Search Console will now only show the keywords where your site appears on an average position of 7 or higher. Now, click twice on the position column to sort the list in ascending order.

Sort by position

As you scroll down, you will find tons of keywords that rank between 7 and 30. All these keywords are low hanging fruits where you can easily rank higher.

To view more results, scroll to the bottom and select a higher number for ‘Rows per page’.

Rows per page

While choosing the keywords to work on, you would want to choose keywords based on their number of impressions. Higher impressions mean more search traffic for those keywords.

To do that, you can export the data in CSV format and then open it in a spreadsheet software.

Download keyword data

Using The Keyword Data in WordPress for Higher Rankings

Now that you have mined the low hanging keywords with higher impressions, the question is how do you improve your rankings for those keywords?

Here are some tips to help you improve your rankings for those keywords.

1. Improve the content by adding more useful information

The #1 reason that your page isn’t ranking for a keyword is that Google finds other content more useful. To counter that, you need to review your article or blog post and add as much useful content as possible.

Look at the articles ranking on top five positions for that keyword and cover all the information that your article is missing in more detail.

We are not saying that you should just add more text to it. You need to make it more useful, informative, and comprehensive.

2. Evaluate on-page SEO

Use Yoast SEO’s analysis tools to improve on-page SEO score for that article. It gives practical tips on improving a page by analyzing the content, keyword density, readability, links, and more.

Yoast SEO analysis

3. Increase time users spend on that page

Google considers it a success when users click on a search result and spend time viewing it. This means your content needs to be highly engaging and instantly provide users the information they were looking for.

Here are some crazy simple things you can do to increase user engagement.

  • Use images – users find images much easier to look at than text. Adding more images makes it easier for users to scan the information and keeps them engaged.
  • Use videos – Videos are the most engaging form of content available. Adding video to a page significantly increases the time users spend viewing that page.
  • Make text more readable – Use smaller paragraphs, lots of white space, simpler sentences, and keep your style casual and conversational. All these things make reading easier for users.

For more tips, see this article on how to increase time users spend on your site.

Step 10. Using Link Reports in Google Search Console

Links play an important role in SEO. Search engines use them as a metric to determine how important a page is and where it should rank in search results.

The Links report in Google Search helps you see your website’s performance in terms of links.

It shows you external links, internal links, top linking sites, and top linking text. More importantly, it shows top linking sites, how often they link to your site, and how many pages they link to.

Links reports in Google Search Console

Click on more to expand any of the link reports. You can click on any item to expand and get more detailed results for that particular item.

Let’s see how you can use these reports to get more backlinks, improve internal links, and boost your rankings.

Search console shows third-party websites that have linked to your site in the ‘Top linking sites’ report. Expand the report by clicking on the more link.

Top linking sites

Next, click on a domain name to expand the report, and you will see all the pages they have linked to. Now click on each page, and you will get the exact URL where they have linked to that particular page.

External links pointing to one of your articles

Here is how you can get more backlinks out of this. Simply visit the website and see how they have linked to you. After that see what other content they have where your site can be linked from.

Next, simply reach out to the website / author via email or contact form on their website. First, thank them for linking to your article and then politely mention that they may want to include a link to this other article of yours.

Now, this direct approach may not always work. In that case, you need to be creative. You can offer them to write a guest post for their blog, leave comments on their articles, follow them on social media, or retweet their articles.

Repeat the process for all important external links on your website. With consistent effort, you can get proper backlinks without spending any money.

Improving Internal Links to Boost Rankings

It is harder to get third-party websites to link to your content. However, it is way easier to link to your own content from your own site. This practice is called internal linking.

Internal linking helps search engines understand the context and relationships among different pages on your website. It also helps them understand which pages are important based on how often you have linked to them.

This is why you should make internal linking a habit when writing new content on your website or blog.

Now let’s see how to use the links reports in Search Console to help you build internal links.

In Google Search Console, click on the Links report and then click on ‘More’ link under ‘Internal Links’ column.

Viewing links report

This report shows how often you have linked to other pages on your site. Click on the Filter icon and then select ‘Target page’ option.

Filter links by target page

Enter the URL of a page you are trying to improve and then click on Done button.

Search Console will now show you how many pages are linking to this page. You can click to expand the report to see all the links.

Internal links pointing to a specific post

As you can see, this article is just linked 5 times and that too probably from the sidebar or archive pages.

You can now go ahead and change this by adding internal links to this article from your other top content. Make sure you are only linking to the article when it makes sense. Adding links where they don’t make sense would create a bad user experience.

Step 11. Using the Structured Data Tool

Structured Data also known as Schema.org mark up is a set of microdata that you can add to your HTML to help search engines better understand your content. Google uses this data to display rich snippets in search results.

Rich snippets shown in Google Search results

Rich snippets make your page more noticeable in the search results. Currently, Google displays rich snippets data for recipes, reviews, and products.

Many WordPress themes automatically include some basic structured data. If you publish recipes, run a reviews site, or an online store, then rich snippets can give your site an SEO boost.

Google provides a rich snippets testing tool, but the structured data testing tool inside Google search console is actually much easier to use.

Simply switch to the older version of Google Search Console and go to Search Appearance » Structured Data page. It will show you the structured data items found on all your pages and errors that need to be fixed.

Structured data

The real useful part is that this tool allows you to quickly locate the errors and fix them. Scroll down to the details section and you will see a list of data types and the number of errors Google found.

Schema markup errors

Clicking on the error will show you all the pages where Google found the error.

Missing markup

For example, the first row in the screenshot above is showing that one item on that page is missing the author and updated markup.

Clicking on that row will bring up a popup with more details. You will see the markup Google found on that page for that particular entry. As you can see it is missing author and last updated information.

These are the most common microdata missing in WordPress. Usually, it appears in archive pages where website owners want to skip the details. To fix this, we edited our theme’s functions.php file and added the following code.

	function wpb_entry_meta() {
		$time_string = '<time class="entry-date published updated" datetime="%1$s">%2$s</time>';
		if ( get_the_time( 'U' ) !== get_the_modified_time( 'U' ) ) {
			$time_string = '<time class="entry-date published" datetime="%1$s">%2$s</time><time class="updated" datetime="%3$s">%4$s</time>';
		}

		$time_string = sprintf( $time_string,
			esc_attr( get_the_date( 'c' ) ),
			esc_html( get_the_date() ),
			esc_attr( get_the_modified_date( 'c' ) ),
			esc_html( get_the_modified_date() )
		);

		$posted_on = sprintf(
			/* translators: %s: post date. */
			esc_html_x( 'Posted on %s', 'post date', 'design' ),
			'' . $time_string . ''
		);

		$byline = sprintf(
			/* translators: %s: post author. */
			esc_html_x( 'by %s', 'post author', 'design' ),
			'<span class="author vcard">' . esc_html( get_the_author() ) . '</span>'
		);

		echo '<span class="posted-on">' . $posted_on . '</span><span class="byline"> ' . $byline . '</span>'; // WPCS: XSS OK.

	}
endif;

After that, we edited our theme’s other template files that were missing the author and date information for entries. In those template files, we added the following code where we wanted to display the author and date.

<?php wpb_entry_meta(); ?> 

Now to test if this worked, click on the ‘Test live data’ button and you will see the error disappear.

Test live data

Repeat the process to fix all structured data links on your website.

Step 12. Using Search Console to Improve Mobile Usability

Nearly 63% of all searches come from mobile devices. That’s why Google gives an SEO bump to mobile-friendly websites in the search results.

Google has a Mobile Friendly test tool which allows you to quickly examine a page. The Mobile Usability report in Search Console tells you how Google sees your entire website in terms of mobile performance.

Mobile usability

If you are seeing errors on this page, then this means that these issues may affect your site’s rankings in mobile search.

You can click on the error and it will show you the affected pages.

Most mobile usability issues are caused by poorly coded WordPress themes or plugins. The easiest way to fix those issues is by using a better responsive WordPress theme.

Step 13. Master the ‘Fetch as Google’ Tool

Fetch as Google Tool allows you to quickly fetch any page from your website and see it as Google bot does. This means that you can actually tell Google bot to go fetch a copy of that page and show the HTML code it sees on that page.

Fetch as Google Tool is located under ‘Crawl » Fetch as Google’ menu in old version of the Search Console. This is more convenient and gives you quick access to the tool.

Fetch as Google

In the newer version, you will have to go to Index » Coverage and then click on a URL to see the option to fetch it as Google.

Fetch as Google in new Search Console dashboard

Once you fetch a URL, you will see it appear with either a success or an error message. If a page is downloaded successfully, then you can click to open its details.

So what should you be looking for? The most important part of this view is the response code. If it is 200 OK, then this means that Google bot was able to successfully download the page.

Response code

Next, you would want to check the download time at the bottom. If it is higher than 1.5 seconds, then this means your website is slow and Google bot may have difficulty crawling your website during peak traffic. See our guide on how to fix WordPress performance and speed issues.

Lastly, you would want to examine the rest of the code and compare it with the source code you see when you visit your website. You would be looking for differences or anything suspicious / broken.

Get any page of your website instantly indexed by Google

The most powerful feature of this tool is that you can use it to get a page quickly indexed by Google. This comes particularly handy when you are running a time-sensitive campaign on your website and want to get the search traffic as soon as possible.

Simply enter a URL and click fetch button. Once Google bot has downloaded the page, click on the ‘Request Indexing’ button.

Request indexing

Step 14. Removing URLs from Google Search

So far we have focused on using Search Console to get indexed and improve rankings in Google Search. However, sometimes you may want to remove content from Google Search as well.

Now one way to do this is to add noindex meta tag to the page you want to remove from search results. However, depending on how often Google crawls your website, this could take some time before your page actually disappears from search results.

Search Console’s Remove URL tool allows you to request a URL to be removed from the search results. Switch to the older version of Search Console, and you will find it under Google Index » Remove URLs menu.

Remove URL tool

Now click on the ‘Temporary hide’ button and then enter the URL you want to remove.

Note: The Remove URL tool will only hide a page from search results for 90 days. To make it permanent you need to delete the content from your website, so that it gives a 404 error.

Step 15. Adding Users to Access Google Search Console

If you have a marketing team or you have hired someone to help you with SEO, then those users may need access to Google search console data.

Search Console allows you to easily add users and give them access to view all reports without sharing your Google account credentials with them.

To add a new user, simply click on the Settings » Users and permissions menu and then click on ‘Add User’ button.

Add new user to Google Search Console

Next, you need to provide the user’s valid Google account email address and select a role for them.

Search console access to new user

There are two types of permission levels. The full permission level will give them access to everything including the ability to add new users. Restricted permissions will allow them to view the data but not add new users.

After choosing a permission level, click on the add button to save your changes.

The user you added will now receive an email notification, so they can login and view Google Search Console data for your website.

Helpful Resources

Following helpful resources on WPBeginner will help you further improve your website’s performance in search engines.

  • Ultimate WordPress SEO Guide – Our complete step by step WordPress SEO guide will walk you through complete WordPress SEO setup like a pro.
  • WordPress Performance Guide – Step by step guide to improve your WordPress speed and performance for higher search rankings and better user experience.
  • WordPress Security Guide – Keep your WordPress site secure with this complete WordPress security guide for beginners.
  • Tracking User Engagement – This guide helps you learn how to track user activity on your website and use it to plan your growth strategy.
  • Convert visitors into Customers – If you run an online store, then this guide will show you how to convert search traffic into paying customers.

We hope this article gave you some good tips on using Google Search Console more effectively to grow your site. You may also want to see our expert tips on how to drive traffic to your WordPress site.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The post 15 Tips for Using Google Search Console to Effectively to Grow Your Website Traffic appeared first on WPBeginner.





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What is RSS? How to use RSS in WordPress?


As a blogger, you have likely come across an orange icon labeled RSS feed. If you have ever wondered what is RSS and how you can use RSS to grow your WordPress site, then you’re in the right place. In this article, we will explain what is RSS, what are the benefits of RSS, and how to use it to grow your WordPress blog.

What is RSS?

What is RSS?

RSS is a type of web feed that allows users and applications to receive regular updates from a website or blog of their choice. The acronym RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary. It is sometimes referred to as the feed or RSS feed.

In the early days of internet, if you wanted to keep track of updates on your favorite website, then you had to bookmark it and then manually visit to see if there were any updates.

RSS feed solved that problem by allowing users to keep track of their favorite websites without having to manually visit the website each time.

RSS allows bloggers and publishers to automatically syndicate their content, so that people can read it in their email, feed reader and other devices.

How Does RSS Feed Work?

RSS feeds work by publishing your latest content in a structured XML document. This feed contains your full articles or the summary, and metadata for each item like date, author, category, etc.

This XML document can then be fetched and read with a RSS feed reader. There are many RSS feed reader software available for all operating systems, desktops, and mobile devices.

Here is what an example RSS feed looks like:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
 
<channel>
<title>WPBeginner</title>
<link>https://www.wpbeginner.com</link>
<description>Beginner's Guide for WordPress</description>
<lastBuildDate>Tue, 02 Dec 2018 14:13:37 +0000</lastBuildDate>
<language>en-US</language>
 
    <item>
        <title>How to Fix WordPress Posts Returning 404 Error</title>
        <link>http://feeds.wpbeginner.com/wpbeginner/</link>
        <pubDate>Tue, 02 Dec 2018 11:58:18 +0000</pubDate>
        <dc:creator>Editorial Staff</dc:creator>
        <category><![CDATA[Tutorials]]></category>
        <guid isPermaLink="false">https://www.wpbeginner.com/?p=10968</guid>
 
        <description><![CDATA[<p>Description of post goes here...]]></description>
        <content:encoded><![CDATA[<p>Post goes here....]]></content:encoded>
        </item>

All WordPress blogs come with built-in support for RSS feeds. By default, each page of your WordPress site contains a meta tag that points to your website’s RSS feed location.

You can disable RSS feeds in WordPress, but continue reading and you might change your mind about disabling them.

What are The Benefits of RSS?

RSS makes it easy for users to subscribe to your content. Using an RSS feed, they can receive updates from your blog or website directly in their feed readers, desktop applications, and many other devices.

Subscribers don’t have to remember your website URL because they can bring the content into a central location where they like to read all of their favorite websites at once.

Your content also becomes portable, and your subscribers can even take it with them for offline reading.

RSS feeds help you build and nurture a loyal following around your blog. RSS subscribers are more likely to share your content on social media. Many of our readers automatically tweet every new WPBeginner article using RSS feed and IFTTT.

As a user, you can subscribe to your favorite websites and read them all at one place. This allows you to quickly scan through your favorite news and blog sites. If you want to leave a blog comment, then you can easily visit the individual article and leave your comment.

Most modern feed readers allow you to sort your reading lists into categories and groups. By using RSS efficiently, you can really maximize your reading time.

How to Use RSS Feeds to Read Your Favorite Websites?

You can subscribe to RSS feeds by using apps called feed readers. There are many free feed readers available on the market for all popular operating systems and devices.

Following are just a few of the top RSS feed reader apps that you can use.

We recommend using Feedly. It is available as a browser add-on as well as a mobile app for iOS, Android, and Kindle devices.

By using Feedly, you can sync your RSS subscriptions across your devices and resume reading wherever you left it. Adding your favorite websites to Feedly is really simple, just enter the URL of the website and click the Follow button to subscribe.

Subscribe to a website using Feedly

In most feed readers, you can search for topics that interest you and subscribe to popular sources on those topics. You can also categorize your favorite sites into topics. Feed readers such as Feedly come with features to print, share, and email articles that you find interesting.

Organize your RSS feed subscriptions

How to Promote Your WordPress RSS Feed

As a WordPress user, your website already publishes an RSS feed. You can find your RSS feed by simply adding /feed/ at the end of your website’s address. For example:

https://www.wpbeginner.com/feed/

Don’t forget to replace wpbeginner.com with your own domain name.

You can encourage visitors to subscribe to your RSS feed by adding an RSS icon to your sidebar or another prominent location. Here is how we do it on WPBeginner:

RSS feed icon on WPBeginner

You can also connect your RSS feed to an email marketing service and allow your users to receive your blog posts directly in their inbox. For instructions, see our guide on how to add email subscriptions to your WordPress blog.

Take Your WordPress RSS Feed to The Next Level

RSS feeds are extremely powerful, and with little effort you can use them to build a loyal following.

1. Use RSS Feed to build an email list

If you are not already building an email list, then you need to start immediately. See our guide on why you should start building your email list right away.

This is where you’ll need OptinMonster. It is the best lead generation software on the market and allows you to convert website visitors into subscribers.

Using OptinMonster to grow your email subscribers

2. Use RSS Feed to grow social media following

IFTTT

Social media websites like Facebook and Twitter can help you grow your website traffic. However, to keep your social media profiles active you need to regularly post content.

Using RSS feeds with IFTTT, you can automatically share your new blog posts to all your social media profiles.

3. Cross Promote Your Blog Using RSS Widget

WordPress comes with a default RSS widget that you can add to your sidebar and display latest posts from any other blog. You can use this widget to cross-promote your own blogs.

Adding RSS widget to your WordPress site

4. Customize your RSS feed

There are some advanced hacks and tricks that you can use to customize your WordPress RSS feeds.

Need even more tips? See our list of the best tips to optimize your WordPress RSS feed.

We hope this article explained what is RSS and how you can use RSS in WordPress to grow your website. You may also want to see our guide on how to get more visitors to your WordPress site.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

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16 Best WordPress Chrome Extensions that You Should Try


Are you looking for the best WordPress Chrome extensions to boost productivity? Browser extensions can help improve your WordPress workflow and make you more productive. In this article, we have hand-picked some of the best WordPress related Chrome extensions that you should try.

Best Google Chrome extensions for WordPress

Why You Need WordPress Chrome Extensions?

Google Chrome is the most popular web browser in the world. It comes with hundreds of add-ons to easily perform several tasks within your browser.

You’ll find many useful WordPress extensions that can help with the website development, editing blog posts, check for grammar and spelling mistakes, manage tasks, and more.

Since there are thousands of extensions available, it becomes difficult for beginners to find the right tools they need.

To help you with that, we did the research and picked the best Google Chrome extensions that you can try.

1. Grammarly

Grammarly

Grammarly is the most popular Chrome extension that you can use to check spelling errors and grammatical mistakes in your WordPress content. It helps you in writing and editing your blog posts easily. Grammarly also checks for contextual spelling errors and helps you improve readability of your content.

2. CloudApp

CloudApp

CloudApp is a popular tool to take screenshots, record screen, and share them with anyone. CloudApp’s Chrome extension makes it easy to take screenshots while browsing the web and insert them into your blog posts.

3. LastPass

LastPass

LastPass is the best password manager tool on the market. It works on Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and more. It also comes with browser extensions for all top browsers including Google Chrome.

Using a password manager like LastPass allows you to choose strong and unique passwords for all your online accounts. It automatically fills in passwords for you so you don’t need to remember passwords.

4. Ahrefs

Ahrefs

Ahrefs is one of the most powerful SEO tools on the market. It helps you understand why your competitors are ranking so high and what you can do to beat them. It also helps you find out keywords and blog post ideas that you can use to boost your search traffic.

They have an SEO Toolbar available as a Chrome extension which gives you a bird’s eye view of any page you are viewing with in-depth SEO analysis and keyword reports.

5. SimilarWeb

SimilarWeb

SimilarWeb is a Chrome extension for website traffic analysis. You can use this extension to see complete stats of your WordPress website including traffic sources, user engagement rate, keywords, and more. It gives an instant and detailed insight for any website with 1-click.

6. Evernote Web Clipper

Evernote

Evernote Web Clipper is a helpful Chrome extension for WordPress writers. It lets you clip the articles that you are reading and open them on any of your devices with Evernote. You can highlight the important content on any website and share it in emails or make a link out of it. Evernote is a bookmarking, social sharing, note taking, and task management tool combined in one app.

7. WhatFont

WhatFont

Wondering which font is used on the WordPress website you’re viewing? Simply add the WhatFont Chrome extension on your browser to find out the font by hovering on the text. It also shows the supported services for the web fonts like Typekit and Google Font API.

8. Asana

Asana

Asana is a popular productivity and task management tool. It also comes with a Google Chrome extension to manage your tasks easily from anywhere including from your WordPress website.

You can add and search tasks from any web page in your browser. It lets you create your own team and assign tasks with due dates. You can also add current URL as a task to read later or share it with your team members.

9. Buffer

Buffer

Buffer makes it easy to share your WordPress content on social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. It allows you to schedule blog posts and monitor the stats for better performance. You can add team members to work collectively and schedule your WordPress posts for social media websites.

10. WPSniffer

WPSniffer

WPSniffer is a popular WordPress themes sniffer tool. You can use this Chrome extension to find out which theme is used on a WordPress website. It also displays the link of the active theme or redirects you to Google search with the theme name.

11. Dimensions

Dimensions

Dimensions is a Chrome extension for designers to measure different dimensions on a WordPress website. You can simply move your mouse between elements like images, text blocks, form fields, buttons, etc to find out the exact measurements. It can also help you convert JPEG and PSD files to web pages easily.

12. WordPress Keyboard Shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts

If you want to explore a new world of keyboard shortcuts for your WordPress site, then WordPress Keyboard Shortcuts is the perfect Chrome extension for it. This extension offers a complete range of keyboard shortcuts that work with WordPress and help you save time.

13. WordPress Style Editor

WordPress style editor

WordPress Style Editor is a useful Chrome extension that enables you to instantly save CSS changes that you make in the inspect tool of your browser. It saves a lot of time from checking the styles in the inspect tool and then manually updating your stylesheet. Make sure that you’re logged into your WordPress site to save the CSS properly.

Note: It works only with the style.css file of your WordPress theme. It makes the changes directly to the main CSS file, so make sure to keep a backup before you start editing.

14. Version Check for WordPress

Version check for WordPress

Version Check for WordPress is a simple Chrome extension that you can use to find out the version of any website built on WordPress. It displays the WordPress version in your browser while viewing a website. It also shows if the version used on the website is outdated.

15. WordPress Admin Switcher

WordPress admin switcher

WordPress Admin Switcher is a Chrome extension for WordPress websites. It allows you to switch to the WordPress login screen without typing the wp-admin in the browser tab. You can also directly switch to the post editor in your WordPress admin area while viewing a post on the website with 1-click.

Note: Mac users can press ‘Cmd + Shift + A’ and Windows users can press ‘Ctrl + Shift + A’ to switch to the admin login screen. You can also click on the extension icon in your browser to switch to your WordPress admin login page.

16. ColorZilla

ColorZilla

ColorZilla is an advanced Chrome extension to pick colors from your WordPress pages and posts. It lets you read the color code by using the eyedropper tool. You can also generate gradient colors CSS and use them in your stylesheets. It also maintains a history of recently picked colors.

We hope this article helped you find the best WordPress Chrome extensions to try. You may also want to see our list of the most wanted WordPress tips, tricks, and hacks to improve your website.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

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How to Add Dark Mode to Your WordPress Admin Dashboard


Do you want to add dark mode to your WordPress admin dashboard? A dark mode color scheme makes it easier to work during late hours by reducing white light emitting from the screen. In this article, we will show you how to easily add dark mode to your WordPress admin dashboard.

Adding dark mode to WordPress admin area

What is Dark Mode and Why Use it in WordPress?

If you often work late at night, then the bright screen light of your computer causes strain on the eyes. Many apps, websites, and even operating systems come with a dark mode color scheme as an alternative.

Dark mode in macOS

Popular websites like YouTube also offer a dark color scheme. This allows users to watch videos late at night with a more comfortable viewing experience.

YouTube dark theme

WordPress comes with admin color schemes, but none of the default color schemes reduce white light coming from your screen.

Luckily, there is a plugin that solves that.

Let’s take a look at how to easily add dark mode to your WordPress admin area for a more enjoyable user experience during late hours.

Adding Dark Mode to Your WordPress Admin Dashboard

The first thing you need to do is install and activate the Dark Mode plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, you need to visit Users » Your Profile page and check the box next to the ‘Dark Mode’ option.

Enable dark mode

Don’t forget to click on the save changes button to store your settings.

Your WordPress admin area will now switch to the dark mode.

Dark mode enabled

Since ‘Dark Mode’ is not an admin color scheme, you can easily use it in combination with an existing WordPress admin color scheme.

Admin schemes with dark mode

At the time of writing this article, the plugin was not compatible with the upcoming Gutenberg editor. However, when writing posts using the new editor, the plugin switches back to the regular admin colors.

It is expected to work with the new editor in an upcoming version. Meanwhile, you can switch to the classic WordPress editor for a consistent dark mode experience.

We hope this article helped you add the dark mode to your WordPress admin dashboard. You may also want to see our guide on the history of WordPress to see the evolution of WordPress interfaces.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

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How to Stop Search Engines from Crawling a WordPress Site


Recently, one of our users asked us how they can stop search engines from crawling and indexing their WordPress site? There are many scenarios when you would want to stop search engines from crawling your website or listing it in search results. In this article, we will show you how to stop search engines from crawling a WordPress site.

Stop search engines from crawling your WordPress site

Why and Who Would Want to Stop Search Engines

For most websites, search engines are the biggest source of traffic. You may ask, why would anyone want to block search engines?

When starting out, a lot of people don’t know how to create a local development environment or a staging site. If you’re developing your website live on a publicly accessible domain name, then you likely don’t want Google to index your under construction or maintenance mode page.

There are also many people who use WordPress to create private blogs, and they don’t want those indexed in search results because they’re private.

Also some people use WordPress for project management or intranet, and you wouldn’t want your internal documents being publicly accessible.

In all the above situations, you probably don’t want search engines to index your website.

A common misconception is that if I do not have links pointing to my domain, then search engines will probably never find my website. This is not completely true.

There are many ways search engines can find a website linked elsewhere. For example:

  1. Your domain name could have been previously owned by someone else, and they still have some links pointing to your website now.
  2. Some domain search site’s results could get indexed with your link on them.
  3. There are literally thousands of pages with just list of domain names, your site can appear on one of those.

There are a lot of things happening on the web and most of them are not under your control. However, your website is still under your control, and you can instruct search engines to not index or follow your website.

Blocking Search Engines from Crawling and Indexing Your WordPress Site

WordPress comes with a built-in feature that allows you to instruct search engines not to index your site. All you need to do is visit Settings » Reading and check the box next to Search Engine Visibility option.

Search engine visibility setting in WordPress

When this box is checked, WordPress adds this line to your website’s header:

<meta name='robots' content='noindex,follow' />

WordPress also modifies your site’s robots.txt file and add these lines to it:

User-agent: *
Disallow: /

These lines ask robots (web crawlers) not to index your pages. However, it is totally up to search engines to accept this request or ignore it. Even though most search engines respect this, some page or random image from your site may get indexed.

How to Make Sure Your Site Doesn’t Appear in Search Results?

The default WordPress visibility settings instruct search engines not to index your website. However, search engines may still end up crawling and indexing a page, file, or image from your website.

The only way to to make sure that search engines don’t index or crawl your website at all is by password protecting your entire WordPress site on the server level.

This means when anyone tries to access your website, they are asked to provide a username and password even before they reach WordPress. This includes search engines as well. Upon login failure, they are shown 401 error and the bots turn away. Here is how to password protect an entire WordPress site.

Method 1: Password Protecting an Entire Site using cPanel

If your WordPress hosting provider offers cPanel access to manage your hosting account, then you can protect your entire site using cPanel. All you have to do is log in to your cPanel dashboard and then click on ‘Password Protect Directories’ icon under the ‘Security’ section.

Password protect directories

Next, you will need to choose the folder where you have installed WordPress. Usually, it is the public_html folder.

Select the root folder

If you have multiple WordPress sites installed under public_html directory, then you need to click on the folder icon to browse and select the folder for the website you want to password protect.

On the next screen, you need to enter a name for the protected directory and click on the ‘Save’ button.

Enter a name for protected directory

Your information will be saved and cPanel will reload the page. After that, you need to add an authorized user by entering a username and password.

Add authorized user

That’s all, you have successfully added password protection to your WordPress site.

Now, whenever a user or search engine visits your website they will be prompted to enter the username and password you created earlier to view the site.

Password protected website

Method 2: Password Protecting WordPress with a Plugin

If you are using a managed WordPress hosting solution, sometimes you don’t have access to cPanel.

In that case, you have the option to use different WordPress plugins to password protect your website. Below are the two most popular solutions:

  1. SeedProd – it’s the #1 coming soon and maintenance mode plugin for WordPress, used on over 800,000+ websites. It comes with complete access control and permissions features that you can use to hide your website from everyone including search engines. We have a step by step how-to guide for SeedProd.
  2. Password Protected – it’s a very simple way to password protect your WordPress site with a single password (no user creation needed). See our step by step guide on how to password protect a WordPress site.

We hope this article helped you stop search engines from crawling or indexing your WordPress site. You may also want to see our ultimate step by step WordPress security guide for beginners.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

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