WordPress: 3 More Hidden Gems In The Jetpack Plugin Suite, & The WordPress App Is Updated!
The Jetpack plugin suite is an essential first plugin install for every new WordPress blog owner – and Jeffry covered the installation and some of it’s features before . If you’re not convinced yet, here’s another 3 reasons why you should install it now. It also ties in nicely with the newest release of the WordPress mobile blogging app which brings some new features I’d like to show you today too, though sadly the app still falls short of the mark.
If the thought of Google Analytics and it’s mountains of variables and cross-analysis over trends over time gives you a headache, the simple WordPress Stats plugin may be perfect for you. Previously only available to WordPress.com hosted accounts, they decided to open it up for any self-hosted WordPress install too – though you do still need a login for WordPress.com as thats where your stats are collated and stored. As well as the basic visitor count and top content, you also get top referrers – useful to see which of your inbound links is worth the most to you. I do think Analytics is worth taking the time to learn though, so if you think you might want to move on up to what the big boys use at some point, it may even be a good idea to install both WordPress and Google Analytics stats codes so you have a good archive of data building up.
I really like these, and it’s a great way to encourage user interaction and commenting on your site. WordPress uses Gravatar images by default if commentators leave their linked email address, and this plugin expands on that by making their profile images clickable – which reveals a little pop-up box (a hovercard) with personal or social links for that user and a little bio. I’ll certainly be adding this feature to my blogs as it really adds a little bit of “wow factor”.
WordPress tends to strip a lot of HTML codes by default, and often this includes the embed codes from various video sites. Avoid the hassle and do everything automatically with this simple plugin. Once installed, you just need to write [youtube http://URL ] replacing the URL, and it will all be done for you – no messy embed codes, no frustration. The plugin works with a quite a few of the most popular video sites too, not just WordPress.
Mobile Blogging WordPress App:
The latest version adds a quick photo button for those times when all you want to do is post and photo, but sadly it literally only uploads and inserts the images and doesn’t actually set the featured image (I showed you how to MakeUseOf this functionality a few weeks ago as well as make your own widget out of them ) – which is a little disappointing. It also fails to categorise the post, so you’ll still need to do a little editing on the PC side at a later date if the idea of uncategorised posts infuriates you as much it as it does me.
Perhaps the only really impressive feature they’ve added is to view your stats, assuming you installed the WordPress Jetpack plugin and enabled the stats component of it. Is it worth it for that alone? I doubt it, yet this app is the best out there for mobile blogging. I’d suggest you keep it for those moments of textual inspiration on the go, but don’t expect to be able to write fully formed blog posts from it. As long as you’re willing to do a few edits later, uploading photos while you’re on the go too removes a middle-step of having to get the images off your phone then upload them using your browser, so I guess we can all appreciate that.
Trouble adding your blog? Make sure you remember to add the http:// part of the url, and that you have XML-RPC remote publishing enabled from the Writing options on the Settings sidebar.
That’s all folks. Do you use any incredible WordPress plugins you think the world should know about? Let us know in the comments, and be sure to follow along with all our WordPress tutorials and features.