Facebook Boost and WordPress
In today’s What’s Up Wednesday article, I’m going to cover three separate issues fellow marketers need to pay attention to that can really effect your online results.
The first issue involves Facebook and the lack of social exposure you now get with your pages and posts. Facebook’s solution will cost you when you BOOST your post.
Since WordPress is the most popular platform used by websites and blogs on the web today, it is worth a moment to talk about two issues that involve self-hosted WordPress sites; when to upgrade, and to have your site secured.
If you use Facebook for any reason, you may have noticed over this most recent year, changes that have been occurring with the exposure of your posts to your friends or fans, regardless if it is on your personal page or fan page.
The big drive behind these changes is based on Facebook going public and need to make money for their investors. The problem I have is that Facebook was supposed to be a social platform, not a cost marketing or advertising venue that we find on most other forms of media.
As recent as last October (2013), an average post would go out to roughly half of your friends or followers. That means for every 100 people you have, 49 would see your post feeds.
That’s not the case any longer! In fact, most recently about 6 people for every 100 on your list will see your post (personal or fan page) unless you are willing to BOOST your post for a (ridiculous) fee.
For illustration purposes, say you have 5,000 friends or followers. At this moment when you post on FB, only 300 will have a feed post sent to them (and trickles over several days). If you want to make sure more people see your FB post on their feed in a timely manner (especially if you have a business), you’ll have to pay for it!
How much you ask? It’s hard to determine, because it depends upon the options you choose. It could be as cheap as $20 for 1,000 exposures for that day to a few hundred dollars to reach your audience. You can choose the post’s feed exposure to be narrow, like to be seen only by women in the USA; or broad like to everyone everywhere.
But my main point is that if you want those who are friends or followers to see your post, unless you pay for it (or they visit your homepage or fanpage), they most likely WILL NOT see that post in their feed!
Conclusion: I’m looking to move into other social networks (like Google plus) since Facebook has abandoned it main purpose… being a sharing social network.
Many self-hosted WordPress users are not aware of the difference between an upgrade and update. All they know is there is a WordPress version change. But there is a significant enough of a difference!
So what is the difference and why should I care?
When WordPress released 3.9.0, that was an version upgrade. It had major change along with the potential bugs that came along with it. And that is my point, bugs (software issues) which has problems. That means potential problems for your site, from theme issues to plugin compatibility problems.
As a business person, I don’t want to be a lab-rat. I avoid upgrades until they have been fixed.
I kept version 3.8.3 until WordPress 3.9.1 was released, then I upgraded with this update.
Why? Version 3.9.1 update fixed 56 issues (problems) with version 3.9.0! Also the update was more stable. Once I did this, when update 3.9.2 was released, all my blogs automatically updated to it. I didn’t experience any problems with the update.
What does this mean for me? I recommend when version 4.0.0 is released, keep 3.9.2 until 4.0.1 is available, then update to avoid being a lab-rat.
Second issue with self-hosted WordPress is security, or the lack of it. It amazes me just how many sites have little or no security. That site is exposed to hackers and could already be hacked without knowing about it.
One type of hack, for example, is piggy-backing onto your site’s bandwidth for their own purposes without being obvious (unless you are monitoring your bandwidth usage regularly on your hosting dashboard).
Another example is a more vicious hack is a brute force attack when a hacker breaks into your admin dashboard, locks you out of your site and asks for a ransom. Once this happens, you can be in a world of hurt.
The good new, there are just a few simple solutions below to help you make WordPress harder to hack if not bullet proof:
- Admin dashboard user log-in name: don’t use ‘Admin’ or ‘Support’ as your user name. You make it easy for hackers to get into your dashboard.
- Admin dashboard password: don’t use a simple, easy to guess passwords that are words or use all numbers. Make sure to use more complex passwords with a mix of characters, numbers and symbols (I like to use 11-12 mixed character passwords).
- Install a security plugin: I use Wordfence because it has several features I like. It can check my site for viruses and look for weak points that can be exploited. It also limits the number of attempts for log-ins before locking them out and can permanently blocking vicious IP addresses. Plus it hides my version of WordPress.
What stops some people from using a security plugin on their site, is that they believe the plugin blocks visitors from a full user experience, which isn’t the case at all. In fact, your visitors never see the difference and can easily see you pages and posts with a secured site.
As you can see, there are new problems to be aware of that can effect your business everyday. Like the start of a good idea with Facebook go awry and ways to overcome it. You also know when and when not to update WordPress that will help you avoid potential issues. And you know if your use self-hosted WordPress, that you need to have security installed.
As always, I encourage you to leave any questions, comments or concerns you may have about this article below.