WordCamp London 2019

Thank you’s are normally something you end with. However, I feel the need to highlight this at the start. Thank you to the team who organised WordCamp London – it has been amazing!

Are you ready to Publish? The afterlife…

This is the title of my talk which I gave on Sunday morning at the Metropolitan University London. It was my first talk at a WordCamp, though I have given various talks at my local Meetup, which I co-host, in Cheltenham.

The talk was about what happened to those blog and news items that are published. I soon went on to ask the question of whether small businesses understand the value of managing a blog. There was so much information, examples and ideas that I needed to get across, but in the end, all I wanted to do was to set off a spark to those who attended the talk. It is impossible to give the answer in 30 minutes… below is a list of resources and jargon that might get you started.

The three main questions I am asking…

  1. Do business owners understand what the story is they are trying to tell the reader or potential customer? What is the reader actually reading, or better, what are they doing next?
  2. How many sme’s manage a blog or news section on their website and fully understand the value of it?
  3. Why are we making it the business owners so difficult to create content for a website?
Are you ready to publish? the afterlife… from Ronald Gijsel
The missing GIF that failed to load – a simple example of how to use Google Data Studio

How I ended up with ‘seven’ tickets…

At the beginning of January, it was announced that WordCamp London would return on the 5th – 8th April 2019. Having learned my lesson from previous years, I booked my hotel early to get a place nearby for a good rate. I always leave it till last and as a result pay over the odds or end up staying miles away.

This year I decided to take the family with me which includes my wife and two sons. London has always been the most accessible WordCamp event in the UK so this was the perfect opportunity for my family to get involved. A few weeks later, I bought the tickets, times four!

My two sons with the MPMUDEV’s superhero #DevMan

Then I had this great idea in the middle of the night of a talk. This was after I spoke to Dan Maby at the Cheltenham Meetup the night before. The whole talk came to me in a flash and I knew what the outline would be. Sure the deadline was THAT following day, so I thought, WHY NOT? The next few days later I received an acceptance email. Please accept and claim your Speakers ticket… plus one!

The slides and the idea to hand draw them was after I realised that it would take me some time to find royalty images to would support my story. It turns out that these were well received, which I am very pleased with as it only took me a few hours while watching some TV.

“Can you help us during WordCamp London as we are sponsoring the event?” Came as the question in a recent Email from Yithemes. Not completely out of the blue as I have been dealing with Yith both as a client and in recent times as their Brand Ambassador in the UK. This added another 2 tickets to my allowance…

I made the decision to keep my paid-for ticket and returned the other-ones so more people could enjoy WordCamp… What I am trying to highlight is that this year’s WordCamp has been super busy and probably three times more exciting as a result of it.

Jargon and Resources

  • SEO – Search Engine Optimisation; the best resources relevant to WordPress blogs are found on Yoast
  • Google Data Studioget started using this free dashboard and make sense of your website’s data. It’s best to follow a few videos to get the idea and copy a template.
  • Google Analytics – it is a free way to start analysing your website visitors and the data. Google has various training sessions on all levels.
  • Google Search Console – submit your website’s sitemap to this console and be amazed at the data that you can collect from this platform. It is also the most important tool to check the technical health of your website.
  • Sitemap – a list of your pages with links. A search engine will visit the links and start to ‘learn’ what it contains. Consider submitting it to Google Search Console, Bing Webmaster, Yandex and Yahoo. If you use an SEO plugin like Yoast, WPMUDEV’s Smartcrawl or many others, you can auto-post the sitemap to various search engines.
  • Schema Markup – explain to the search engine what the bits of data are. Is it a price, a postcode or a phone number? Test your markup here – or learn how more at the Yoast Academy
  • Google Trends – a great starting resource to work on keywords and trends – Google Trends
  • AMP – Accelerated Mobile Pages is a way to speed up your blog for mobile views. Learn more here or try this WordPress plugin

Further reading on WordCamp London

Would you like to invite me to your local WP Meetup?

I have given various talks mainly aimed at content, SEO, Analytics and eCommerce. Please drop me a line via the UK WP Community Slack group, if you like me to come along.


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