Tag Archives: Yahoo!

Why I need to use WordPress.org again

As many of you know, I’ve been struggling with my website recently.

I had a blog on WordPress.com and a website built by Apple Mac’s iWeb hosted by Yahoo.

But wouldn’t it be better to have my blog on my website? Of course.

My first stab at doing this involved downloading the WordPress software onto Yahoo, and trying to create a site there. The problem? You really need considerable programming skills to be able to do this. It’s not that those of us with limited programming skills can’t do this. Just that the learning curve was going to be steep. Unfortunately, I went into this with the expectation that it was going to be quick and easy. I was disappointed.

My second stab at this was to build my website using WordPress.com. All I did was add static pages to my blog, and, as I said in my last blog, created a beautiful website in two days!

My third stab was to cheat and add Google Analytics to iWeb, and pray that it worked, even though I kinda gerrymandered it onto the site hosted by Yahoo. (It did)

So what could possibly be the problem now?

iWeb does NOT support a blog, well not one that functions anything like the way it does on WordPress. And since my blog is an important part of my web presence, I have to have it.

So if I want Google Analytics to work with my WordPress blog, the only way I can do that is to work via WordPress.org, which means downloading the WordPress software onto a host, then struggling with your meager programming skills to get the site up and running. (See Stab One above).

Why can’t I use Google Analytics with WordPress.com? Because it is a plugin, and t turns out that WordPress.com does NOT employ plugins for security reasons.

So back to wrestling with wordpress.org. But this time,

  1. I know it’s going to be hard.
  2. I have my dummies book to help me.
  3. I have my beautiful website up and running on WordPress.com. So all I have to do is mess around with my Yahoo-hosted site.

Stay tuned!

–Cynthia Haggard writes historical novels.  She has two completed manuscripts that will be published in the coming year. THWARTED QUEEN  is a portrait of a woman trapped by power, a marriage undone by betrayal, and a King brought down by fear.FAMILY SPLINTERS is  a novel about identity, forbidden love and family secrets. For more on her creative writing, go to spunstories. (c) 2011. All rights reserved.

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How to cheat and use Google Analytics on iWeb

What’s so special about Google Analytics? Why do I feel I absolutely MUST have it on my website?

Because it gives you statistics about the visitors who come to your site. In detail. With a nifty map to show you which geographical locations are lighting up for you, so that if you’ve done a book-tour in Milwaukee, say, you can tell if it helped your sales or not.

Most of all, its FREE!

As you know, I have limited programming skills, which is why I’m an unsuccessful Thesis theme user. However, I did an experiment, in which I kinda stuck Google Analytics code onto a site I built using iWeb, that’s hosted by Yahoo! Much to my surprise, it worked.

Here is what you have to do:

  1. Sign up for a google account.
  2. Find Google Analytics, either by doing a Google search, or by clicking on your google page.
  3. Register the site you are interested in. (Go to the Settings page in Google Analytics, and click ADD NEW PROFILE.)
  4. Find the code. (Click on Edit next to your site name, then look for a yellow circle that says TRACKING NOT INSTALLED. (Should be on top right of page). Next to it is something that says CHECK STATUS. Click on that.)
  5. At the bottom you will see the code you need. Copy the code.
  6. Ignore comments about pasting html code before /head/ or /body/ or in the asymmetrical part of the code, as all the tutorials will tell you. You won’t find it on iWeb. You also can’t use it as a plugin. Try not to worry about it.
  7. Open iWeb, and go to widgets.
  8. Click on HTML snippet and paste code into popup window. Arrange your window near top of page for webcrawlers.
  9. Publish. (Code magically disappears, so that you don’t have Google Analytics number on view for all of those spammers out there.)
  10. DON’T FORGET to paste the code onto ALL of the pages on your website. You can use the SAME code for different pages of the SAME site. You CANNOT use a code across different sites, but Google Analytics will provide you with a DIFFERENT CODE for each site.
  11. Last but not least, WAIT AT LEAST 24 hours.
  12. Voila!

If I can manage it, I’m sure you can.  I’d be interested in learning about your experiences.

–Cynthia Haggard writes historical novels.  She has two completed manuscripts that will be published in the coming year. THWARTED QUEEN  is a portrait of a woman trapped by power, a marriage undone by betrayal, and a King brought down by fear.FAMILY SPLINTERS is  a novel about identity, forbidden love and family secrets. For more on her creative writing, go to spunstories. (c) 2011. All rights reserved.

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Why I am one frustrated & disappointed Thesis Theme customer

The problems that I’m having are neatly captured in this screen shot.  My beautiful picture of Castle Raby is obscured by a square picture thingy and two widgets that I don’t know how to get rid of.  Can I just select it and hit delete? Not a chance.

How did I get into this pickle? How did I end up with a website that has so many obvious problems?

I was recently convinced that my web presence needed a complete overhall. I am one of those people that have my website hosted by one provider (in my case, Yahoo!) and my blog on another (WordPress). But at a recent webinar, the person I’ve come to think of as my tech guru, said that all authors should have an integrated website, with blog and site rolled into one.

I have been blogging for about 4 years on WordPress.com, and I’ve been very happy with it. True, there was a learning curve, and I seem to remember that 4 years ago there was an issue loading images. But they’ve constantly upgraded the software, and it’s now so easy to use that I hardly need to think about it. So when I learned that moving over to WordPress.org, i.e. downloading and using the open-source software as both a website and blog, would be easy, I was hooked. Especially as it gave me access to premium themes such as THESIS, which are optimized for SEO (search engine optimization). I’m planning to publish a novel this fall, and SEO will give me the visibility that is so sorely lacking on my current site.

Last Thursday, I downloaded WordPress onto Yahoo. Then bought Thesis, and downloaded that. It was a glorious afternoon, so I yanked myself away from my oblong-eyed mistress and made myself take a walk for a few hours. As I sat on a wall looking over a glorious view of Georgetown, I happily contemplated getting my website up and running that evening.

If you are one of those people who’ve heard about the husband-and-wife team who got their Thesis theme working in a weekend, or about all the praise that is heaped upon Thesis, and have just bought the license for $87 and are trying not to feel stupid because it just isn’t’ working, this post is for you.

I returned home, and happily set about adding new pages. But they weren’t appearing in the top panel. Why not? On WordPress.com, all you had to do was go to the sidebar, click on “Pages”, click on “Add Pages”, type in the name, and voila!, it magically appeared at the thing on the top (which I understand is called the Nav bar).

That didn’t happen. Can you get rid of a picture by selecting it and hitting delete? Not a chance. I spent hours trying to get THESIS to work, and here were the problems I encountered:

  1. I couldn’t find anything. True there was a whole page of stuff, but I didn’t know what it meant.
  2. I don’t have the vocabulary for what I’m looking at. For example, there is a default square picture on Thesis that keeps changing picture. I don’t know what it’s called. I do know I’d like to get rid of it.
  3. There is no indexed Help on the page.
  4. There is no-one on the end of the telephone to help you out. The only people who helped were the ones at Yahoo!, which now has a fabulous customer service.  As a small business owner, I can actually ask them to call me. How wonderful it is to be able to speak to intelligent people who can solve your problems in a matter of minutes. You certainly can’t do that with open-source software.

I was just about ready to throw in the towel, and get my money back. But my tech guru convinced me to hang in there. Why? Three simple letters:  SEO.

So what does my life look like these days?

Build ONE thing on website.

Get STUCK on second thing.

Go to FORUM.

Ask QUESTION.

WAIT.

On Friday, I learned how to get those Nav Bar Tabs (the ones that say “Welcome”  “About Cynthia” across the top of the site) to appear.

On Saturday, I got my images to upload.

If anyone has any suggestions about how to make that square thingy go away, customize widgets for each page, or even how to find the visual web editor so that I can make changes to my font, I’d be most grateful.

–Cynthia Haggard writes historical novels.  She has two completed manuscripts that will be published in the coming year. THWARTED QUEEN  is a portrait of a woman trapped by power, a marriage undone by betrayal, and a King brought down by fear.FAMILY SPLINTERS is  a novel about identity, forbidden love and family secrets. For more on her creative writing, go to spunstories. (c) 2011. All rights reserved.

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Filed under About Cynthia, Blogs and websites to watch, How to Publish Your Novel, Promoting Yourself