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Mod 4 - Blogging

Running Time:  10:50

You can display as many – or as few – posts on your blog page as you like. Here I have four posts.

WordPress sets the total by default to ten but you can change that by going to Settings > Reading and adjusting the “Blog pages show at most” setting. I show you how to do this towards the end of this video.

Transcript Of This Video

OK, I think it’s time to build the blog. Before I do, I want to have a quick review of how it is set up on my prototype site. Now you’ll see what I have here is the date posted and a link to the article itself, “Getting started,” and a featured image and then the first paragraph and continued reading. If I continue scrolling down, that’s the same for the second post, “Keeping out the pests,” same thing. Date published, title of the article, featured image and continued reading. It’s very typical of a blog. I’ve only published four posts, so that’s why you see four. All right, how do you do this? Here I am back on my site that I am building, and I’m just going to click on the word “Blog.” Right now I only have one, and that’s the famous “Hello world” post, and we don’t need that, so let’s get started. I’m going to go into my admin. Let’s have a look at “All posts.” I set up four posts before this video, so they’re all in draft status, the four that I’m going to use. But I don’t want the “Hello world” post so what I’m going to do is trash that. Not only that, but I’m going to go into trash, and I’m going to delete it permanently because I will never use this and I want it out of my database. I don’t need it, so I’ll go back to here, to “All.”

Now these four, let’s have a look. These four I’m going to publish right now at one stroke. I’m just going to click on all four or select all four, then I’m going to go to “Bulk actions,” and I’m going to go to “Edit” and go to “Apply,” and then right over here, “Status.” I’m going to change them from “Draft” to “Published,” and then they’ll all be published at once and we’ll have a look at what that does. Now they’re all published, the word “Draft” disappears from all four. Let’s have a look at that. So, go to the site and go to “Blog,” of course “Hello world” is gone and now you see the text for the entire post for each of the four posts, which is not what you want, and is a real common mistake that beginners make because they don’t use the “Continue reading” or the “More” link. It just looks terrible. Even without images, it looks terrible, but if you put in images, it wouldn’t make any difference, it would still look terrible. So how do you get this in much better shape? Let’s start with this over here, something I’ll pay attention to next year. I clicked on that, so this is the full post. You can see it’s got its own page, it’s not shared with all the other posts on that blog page. The blog page also is referred to as the archive page too, and I think it’s a better description anyway. Let’s get to editing. So, click on this.

Now what I want to do is add the featured image and the “More” link. All right, we’ll start with the featured image. Right over here let’s go down to “Featured image,” and I’m going to add a featured image. The images I want to use are not here, but it just so happens I do have them nearby. They’re in a folder here called “Blog,” and I’m just going to drag the entire folder in. Now I do that reluctantly because sometimes people think that you could drag in 80 images and it doesn’t matter what the file size is, or whatever. No, it’s really– If you’re going to do it have a few images, maybe the way I did it, otherwise you’re going to clog up the internet.

The image I want to use, something I’ll pay attention to next year is right over here. OK, and I’m going to be a bad boy, and I’m not going to put in the alternative text description. So, there it is. It sits down over here, and that’s fine. I also want to use the drop cap for this article, so I’ll switch that on over here. The very important thing is to put in that “More” link or “Continue reading,” and it’s going to be after my first paragraph. I could put it anywhere I want, but I’m going to put it in over here. It happens to be a block. That is, the “More” option, the “More” link, is a block and it’s right over here. I’m going to put it in, and you can see visually this is where it’s going to be, I call it the “Cut line,” But “Read more” is fine. I’m going to click on this, and we’re going to now– Of course, we’re updating. So, let’s have a look. OK, much better.

Let’s have a look as it appears on the archive or the blog page. You can see here’s the continued reading. When you click on “Continued reading” too, it won’t take you to the top of the article, and it takes you just to the point where right over here you can continue reading. OK, let’s go on and do the other three. I’m going to go over here, “Keeping out the pests.” You can’t edit from here, so you might say, “How come I can’t edit?” You have to go to the actual post. Here we are, “Keeping out the pests.”

Let’s edit that. I’m going to– You don’t have to do this in any particular order, I’m just going to go over here and do the drop cap. Now I’m going to do the “More.” Nice, it moved, so it’s more frequently used. Then for the featured image, make sure you click on the document tab because that’s where you’re going to find the featured image. I’m going to go over here, and for “Keeping out the pests” I have this image over here, and we’ll update, and we’ll view.

Sometimes people get a little confused, and they go, “How come it’s not continue reading over here?” That’s not– Because this is the whole article. That’s why it’s not there. But as I’ve demonstrated, if you go over to the blog you’ll see now the continued reading link is over here, and it’s looking a whole lot better. Let’s do the “How much?” post, and I’m going to go right into “Edit.”

We’ll go over to “Edit,” and for that, I’m just going to do the drop cap first and next I’m going to do the “More,” which is over here. Last I’m going to go over here to the document, and we have a featured image. Actually, this post has two different images, one is a featured image where I have this guy with a watering can. OK, that’s good. But I also have an image that goes right over here, so I’m going to slip in an image block right over here. For that, I’m going to go to the media library, and I’ve got my little watering can, and not what I expected. It is what I expected. I want to have the text wrap around to the right. So, click this little button over here. Nice. If you want to resize it, of course, I’m going to make it just a little bit smaller. That’s fine, and now I’m going to update this page. Or actually, post. I sometimes get them interchanged, but hopefully, you know what I’m talking about. “View the post,” and perfect. The last one I want to do is– Let’s go to “Blog.”

All right. So we have them, and there they’re going to be listed in chronological order. That’s one of the hallmarks of a blog is that– We call it the blog chronology because the first article is always going to be the newest one. There’s ways to adjust that if you want but by default, the newest article will always be displayed at the top.

OK, “Garden security,” and I’m going to go to “Edit.” Let’s do this over here, and hopefully, I’m not boring you. I’m not here to bore. OK, we got the “More,” and we also have two images for this one too, so first I’m going to put in the featured image. You can see it doesn’t matter when you’re working with WordPress, the order that you do things in. Your workflow will be your workflow, and it will change over time. Let’s see, I’m going to go for this image over here, and that’s fine. That’s going to be my featured image, and then I have an image down here after this paragraph. So I clicked inside of this paragraph, and I’m looking for the inserter, here it is. I’m going to put my image in over there, and I’m going to go to my media library, and here’s this round image I want right over here. Now it sits a little big, so I’m going to shrink it down to size or make it a little bit smaller.

I’d prefer this to be in the center of the page, so the “Center” button is over here. OK, nice. Let’s update and let’s have a look. OK, it’s a little bit big, but that’s all right. If we go into the blog page or the archive page, if you will, you’ll see that all of my four posts are just the way I want them. Each having a title of the article, featured image, first paragraph. Now I can vary that too, I could have made it two paragraphs, it didn’t matter. I just uniformly decided to use one paragraph, and then, of course, the “Continued reading” link. But here’s the story, and this is something to pay attention to, this shows four. What happens if I add five, six, seven, eight, ten? Would they all be showing here? Here’s how you can control that. You go into your admin dashboard, and you go over to “Settings,” and this is a very important setting. “Settings,” “Reading.” Right over here where it says “Blog pages show at most,” right now it’s set at 10, and that’s the default position. So in other words, if I add 100 posts, only ten would be showing up on that blog archive page. I can control that, and I could take it down, I can raise it. I wouldn’t usually go beyond 10, and I think that’s fine. But it raises a big question, what happens if you did have 100 or 200 or 300 posts? How would people get access to that older content? That’s what categories and tags are all about.

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Mod 4 - Blogging

Running Time:  7:56

Encouraging your blog readers to leave a comment is one of the most important things you can do.

Blogging is not just your words on the web. It’s about engaging users to converse and WP makes that pretty simple by default. A page that has lots of comments is a page that your readers will consider as providing useful information. Plus Google will reward you with a search engine rankings boost. (Remember, Google thinks like a person).

All user comments are moderated by you. A comment cannot be published to your blog unless you approve it. Don’t worry if someone tries to span you or post a nasty to your blog.

I show you what happens when a comment is made to your blog and how to manage it. Like all of this course to this point, I’m not using any plugins to give you the feeling of what WP does out of the box.

Links In This Video

Transcript Of This Video

Here I am back at one of my favorite blogs, the WP Tavern, which is like a WordPress water cooler. It’s the place to go to get all kinds of WordPress news, and where people hang out in the WordPress community to discuss, “What do you think WordPress?” If I scroll down here, what I want to show you are the comments that are left by this post’s readers. Let’s go down here. So you can see there’s one, two– A whole bunch. Each one of these gives us this the person who posted it, the date, what they said, and on it goes. At the very bottom of this particular article is a place to leave your comment, to enter your name and your email address, and so forth. You can see, I’ve been here before. Also, there’s a little thing over here to join the discussion by email. That’s an option, which means that once I post something and once it’s approved, anybody else who makes a comment to this post, I’ll get an email. What that does is engenders a conversation between me and other readers of this blog. That’s something you want to aim for, to look at your blog as a vehicle to start a discussion and to encourage others to discuss things that are of interest to themselves. It is much like building a community. Anyway, let’s take a look at the In My Garden site. This is the site that I’ve been working on. I’m not logged in, and the reason why I’m not logged in is I wanted to show you what certain things look like from a not logged in perspective. In other words, somebody comes by and sees my article on garden security and here is the “Leave a Reply” section, much like we just saw it at the WP Tavern. What I want to do now is leave a comment. So let’s say my name is Steve, and I want to say, “I love this post.” Perfect. I’m going to need to leave my name, that’s required. OK. I need to leave my email address, that’s required. So, we’ll make it up. I don’t have to leave a website or my website if I’m Steve, so I’m just going to leave that alone. Now I’m going to post the comment. Now here’s the thing, the comment won’t be approved until I, Bud– The site owner will approve the comment. You don’t have to worry about people coming to your site and putting all kinds of bad stuff on there because they won’t, and they can’t unless you approve the comment. So let’s see how that approval will take place. Go back here, and here it is. It’s in the “Comments” section, and you can see there’s a little one over here, which indicates that there’s one comment pending my approval. Now look over here, I’ll see the name of the person who created the comment, the IP address where he came from, the actual comment itself and the post to which it applies. Now if I hover over any part of this area where the comment is, I have some options here, and this is important. First I have whether or not I want to approve it, so if I approve it, it’ll be published to the garden security post. So, I do, and I’ll take a look at that right now. I’m going to go over here, and let’s refresh the page..

Now you can see the comment has been published. OK, perfect. That’s all I have to do to approve and have that comment published. Let’s say I don’t want it anymore, well I can unapprove it. There, it’s that simple, and it won’t be there anymore. But if I want to reply to it, which would be very common, you probably would want to reply to a user’s comment. Maybe you get excited and say, “Somebody commented on one of my posts.” You could click this, and you could reply right here, that’s one way to do it. The other way to do it, let me show you real quick, is to go over here and you can leave a reply right from here. Either way, it’s going to be a reply to what Steve said.

I like this idea over here, to leave it right here and say “Thanks, Steve. This is Bud.” OK, and I’m going to now just– You’ll see, here I am, I have made my reply. Of course, it’s already approved. That would make sense. Now if I go and look at it on the site, I have to refresh, and I just made a reply. So I could have gone this way, or I could have gone the way I did and reply to Steve. One other thing to note when it comes to managing your user comments. If you want to remove the comments, let’s say you want to trash them. I’m going to trash both. I’m going to go to “Bulk activity,” I’m going to move to trash, and I’m going to click “Apply,” and they’re gone. They’re in the trash bin, so they’re right over here. If I want to restore them, I could click these two over here and hit “Restore.” I could also delete permanently, and as I’ve said before when you see the words “Delete me permanently,” in WordPress, they’re not kidding so be careful. I’m going to restore these.

It will take me back to “All,” I clicked on “All,” so I see all of my comments. Another thing to note is you always have the ability to mark this as spam, so any comment could be marked as spam. Which means that you should not be getting a similar comment if it’s a spammy comment. Now, controlling spammy comments is something taken up by a plugin called Akismet, which I will do when I talk about Akismet in the plugins module. One other thing to note is if I go to “Settings–” Let’s go to settings. Let’s go to “Discussion,” WordPress talks about leaving comments as a discussion. So there’s a lot of different discussion settings here, how you want your comments to appear in your blog. A lot of those things that deal with managing your comments can be set right over here. Again, that’s in the “Settings” and in the “Discussion” area.

You might also note if we scroll down here, there’s some other settings here that are kind of interesting. Those little avatars, those are the little graphics by the person’s name. You can set those as defaults, for example here’s the default. If you want to put a picture in, you could do that. If you want your own picture to show up like I do, then you check out a service called, and you can put your picture in there. Which means that whenever you leave a comment, whether it’s on your blog or someone else’s, your image will be next to your name. That’s a Gravitar.

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Mod 4 - Blogging

Running Time:  11:18

Don’t be confused between what a widget is and what is a sidebar. Just think of a sidebar as a container that holds any number of widgets. (Woa, that sounds confusing so watch the video).

While there are some standard widgets you’ll find that it is your theme which sets the number and types of widgets you can use for your site.

Widgets can do a lot of things but they usually are tied to the blog and make it easier for users to access older posts.

Useful Links

Here are two plugins you may want to use for your site.

  • Content Aware Sidebars – Unlimited Widget Areas
    Displays different sidebars (and therefore different widgets) depending on the page a user is on. I’m using the premium version for this course and it’s fantastic.
  • Site Origin Widgets Bundle
    If you need more widgets than those that come with your theme check out this plugin. While I’ve not used this, Site Origin is a well know company in WP World with their Page Builder plugin.

Transcript Of This Video

Now let me talk to you a little bit about widgets. Widgets are commonly used in two places, and one is for a blog’s sidebar such as we see here on my prototype site, and the other which I’m not going to demonstrate now– Widgets can be used to help build home pages. That’s for another day, right now let’s focus on the most common use of widgets, and they’re used not just in a blog but specifically for sidebars. In the 2017 theme, there is a right sidebar, and I currently have several widgets in it. This widget over here I’m not going to even deal with during this demonstration, because that widget is created by the use of the Jetpack plugin, so I’ll do that when we get to the Jetpack plugin. Then I’ve got a search widget, so that would be the second one over here, and then a categories widget followed by a recent posts widget, and if I scroll all the way down to the bottom I have a footer widget. Here’s one right over here that deals with links, and then one over here that gives me the copyright and an image. It’s your theme that will determine the types of widgets and their placement on your site.

Keep that in mind when you’re working with widgets. Let’s do that right now. I’m going to go to the site that I’m working on while I already have widgets in place, and I want to see if I have anything here in the footer. No. So, let’s get to work on setting up the widgets. OK, I’m going to go over here, and I’m going to go into “Dashboard.” Widgets can be found under “Appearance,” “Widgets.” Here’s your widget management page, if you will. On the left-hand side right over here are the available widgets, and on the right-hand side are the sidebar areas to place your widgets. If you’ve noticed I already had widgets in place, and I had Surge and Recent Posts and all these other ones over here, which I’m not going to us, so I want to start by getting rid of all these. Click on the term “Search,” and I’m going to delete. Now it doesn’t mean I can’t use the search tool, and you’ll see that I can in one second. It just means I’m removing it from my site. Delete. I’ll show you exactly what I’m talking about in one second. Delete. I always like to start fresh, and it’s my theme that set this all up, to begin with, so now I like to get rid of them and put the widgets in that I want because a whole bunch of these widgets don’t mean anything to me. So, now I don’t have any widgets in my blog sidebar. To prove the point, just in case you didn’t believe me, and why wouldn’t you–? If I go over here to the blog, you’ll see there are no right sidebar widgets. They are gone. Now, I don’t recommend that you do this because widgets are really useful for letting users have access to older content. So, let’s put those widgets back in where we want them to be. I could go again to “Dashboard,” but look at this, they already have a link right to the “Widgets” section of my WP admin. How nice is that?

I’m going to use the widgets for my site that I want. One was that search widget, OK, so I’m just going to grab this. This is a drag and drop experience. Look at that. I’m not going to give it a title, and I’m just going to leave it just like that. Then I had another one for “Categories.” So let’s do that, “Categories.” OK, that’s fine. I can do a little configuring over here, but I’m not going to put the title in. I can if I want, but I can leave it the way it is. I can always come back and put in a title. For now, I’m going to do “Display as a drop down and show the number of posts.” OK, I’ll do that, and I’m going to save. Whenever you make a change to your widget setting, always save it. That’s important. I like to fold it up to get it out of the way, and the other one I like is “Recent posts.” I’m going to go down over here and finally go “Recent posts” right over here, and I’m going to slide that up over here.

I’m going to put it right in position. Notice I can move them around. So I want five recent posts to show, I’m not making any changes, so there’s nothing to save, but what I mean by “Move them around” is I can change the order in which I want my three widgets to appear. Right now it’s going to be search, and the categories widget, and then the recent post widget. I don’t have to save anything at this point, and it’s done automagically for me. To prove that point let’s go over here and let’s go to the blog.

Now you’ll see I have that search widget, I have “Categories,” and I have “Recent posts.” I have this as a drop down, and I don’t think I like it as a drop-down, so let me show you how easy it would be to change that. I don’t really like that, it looks ugly, so I’m going to go back to widgets and let’s de-select this option over here to display it as a drop down. Again, make sure you save any change in the widget configuration. So, I just did that. Let’s take a quick look again at the blog. Much nicer. It looks clean. Now I’m going to add widgets to the footer, currently, there aren’t any, so let’s do that.

Let’s go to widgets now. Again, the number of placements or positions or places, if you will, on the page where I can put my widgets are determined by the theme itself. This theme allows for three different locations on the page where I could put my widgets, other themes, specifically premium themes, may have many more options than just three. In fact, they usually do so for the footer widget. I remember I had a menu, but I have to create that menu, so let’s do that first. I’m going to go over here to “Menu,” and I’m going to create a new menu. To create a new menu, click on “Create a new menu.” Let’s call this “Footer menu.” Remember, you always have to name everything when it comes to many things in WordPress. So, let’s create the menu. Good. Now I’m going to pick out the pages that I want in the menu, so I want the blog page, and I want “Harvest,” “Plant,” “Prep,” and “Home.” Perfect.

Now I’m going to add these to the menu, and I’m going to make sure they’re in the right order. So, “Home” would be first, and then I want “Prep.” We definitely don’t want this to be a sub-menu, so “Blog” is going to be at the end. Let me stick that down there. So, “Home,” “Prep,” “Plant,” “Harvest.” You’re not going to be– Sometimes it takes a little bit of doing to get these in the right order. Let me flip this over here. We don’t want that. “Blog” going over here. Let’s switch these around. If you have a problem you can always do this, click on that chevron. You want to go up one level. OK, perfect. There is always an answer for everything. “Home,” “Prep,” “Plant,” “Harvest,” “Blog,” perfect.

Let’s save the menu. OK, let’s go back to our widgets. For the footer, I have a menu to go in there, so I’m going to go over to custom menu, and I’m just going to drag it right over here. I’m going to give us a title, and you’ll see why in a second. You don’t have to title things, but– In fact, let’s do a better one. Let’s call this “Key links.” Now you have to pick out which menu you want in there, in the footer. I want the footer menu. I’ve created two menus so far, and I don’t want the main menu, I want the footer menu that created just for this occasion. Let’s save that and let’s have a look. So, I always like to look at things. Let’s go over to “Blog,” and we’ll see right over here– Looks like the footer one means on the left-hand side. Here are my links, so if I click on any one of these, they would take me to that page, “Key links.” That’s fine. Now if I go back to here–

You might say, “Wait a second. Didn’t you just put something in there?” Yes, I did. If you come back to the widgets page and you don’t see the widget that you just added, my suggestion would be to refresh or reload your page, which I’m doing right now. You’ll see that it’s there. So don’t worry about that, it’s there. The last one I want to do is in the second footer, footer two. There’s two different widgets I’m going to stick in there. One is a text widget, and it’s far away to slide it all the way up there so what I’m going to do is click on the text widget and here are the three different sidebar areas I could stick this. I said I wanted it to go into two, so I click on “Two” and add it. Now it’s over here in two, and I’m not going to do anything other than pasting the copyright for the site. I’m going to save this– Remember, I made a change, so make sure you click “Save.” I’m going to fold up this little window over there, I don’t want that, and now I’m going to add that cornucopia image. So, “Image–” Again, I’m going to do it this way. Sometimes it’s just a lot easier to do that, “Add” instead of dragging and dropping. I’m going to find the image that I want to add, and the image is already in my library. Click on that. Click on this. Away we go. Save, of course. Let’s go over to the blog. So we will have our second footer here, which contained two different widgets. One was that text widget, and then the other was the image widget.

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Mod 4 - Blogging

Running Time:  3:01

Using Tags and Categories for your Blog Posts is an excellent way to automatically archive your blog’s content. It also lets readers access older posts. And its a good way to help Google understand what your site is about.

I find Categories to be more useful than Tags but no reason why you can’t use both. Once you learn how to set up your Categories you’ll know how to do Tags.

One reason Categories are more useful is that you can create Sub Categories. You can’t do that with Tags.

A best practice is to assign at least one Category to each post and to never leave a post as Uncategorized.

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Transcript Of This Video

I’m now going to talk about tags and categories, and while there are differences between them, they’re both very similar. One of the key concepts is that both tags and categories allow you to archive your blog posts. This is important because over time you’re going to have a lot of posts. At least I hope you do, and they’re not all going to be displayed on your site at any one time. Currently, on the site that I’m building, I have four posts showing, but over time, I may have 40, 50, 100 posts. How do people get access to that older content that is still very valuable but is no longer being displayed? Let me give a couple examples of how categories are used and how tags are used. Let’s start with the categories.

I found this little site here which is about interior design in Raleigh North Carolina that is a pretty good example of the use of categories. Here is a traditional blog. You can see one post follows the next with a featured image. Well done. They have this thing over here, “Filed under art, interior design.” Here they’re using two different categories that they’re assigning for this post. If I scroll down a little more, you’re going to see “Filed under interior design.” OK good, I like that a lot. Now if I look over here on the right-hand side, “Categories,” I have a widget here that lists all the categories that are being used for this blog. If I click on any one of them, let’s click on “Art.” This is going to show me all of the blog posts for which the term art has been assigned so the term “Art” as a category. You can scroll through that, and the same thing would be for all these other categories. OK, now let’s look at tags.

Tags are similar but different. Let me show you about tags. This is an old site of mine about the Joy of Code. If I scroll down here, we’re going to see that I’ve got to go way down here, right over here, “Tag cloud.” Look at these words over here, and you’ll notice some words are bigger than others. The bigger the word, the more often it was used as a tag for various blog posts. In other words, I did a whole lot of posting for it– Guess what? WordPress. So if I click on “WordPress,” you’ll now see all the posts that were assigned the tag “WordPress.” This lets the user see real quickly, “All of these articles deal with WordPress.” That’s true. I’m not going to show you how to do tags now, because if you know how to do categories, which I find to be far more useful than tags, then you are how to do tags.

Let’s have a look at how to set up categories and use them on the blog that I’m working on. So, if I scroll down over here we’ll see there’s a widget over here called “Categories,” and if I click on the word “Uncategorized,” everything I’ve done so far is uncategorized. WordPress will automatically assign the word “Uncategorize” to every blog post that you make by default, which is not very helpful. So, how do you fix all that? Let me do this first. Let’s go into something I’ll pay attention to next year, and assign our first categories. You can assign more than one category, and the words that you’re going to use for your category could be a single word, or it could be a short phrase, are going to be a way of grouping all of your different posts. That’s the best way to describe how categories work.

So, go over here to “Categories” and see where it says “Uncategorized?” No good. I click on “Add new category,” so the one I’m going to add here is “PH factor.” Let’s do that, let’s make sure it’s over here– “PH factor” “Add category.” OK, so now it’s in there, and it’s automatically selected, and the other one I’m going to add is “Soil.” Yes, that’s how they spell it. I’m going to add that over here, so that’s fine. I am now going to update my page because every time you make a change, make sure to do the update.

That’s going to be good. Now, let’s have a look at what happened here. We go over here, and we see down over here the two categories that were assigned. This particular theme will show the categories like this. I have a widget that shows categories, so now I have these two categories, and I still have the uncategorized category if that makes any sense. Let’s go on and assign some more categories, and it’ll even make more sense. So I’m going to go to the “Pests” page, if you will, or post. Let’s have a look, let’s go to here– “Keeping Out the Pests” I should say. We’ll go over here, and I’m now going to edit, so we’ll put this category in here. Now make sure you’re in the document part of the right sidebar here, because this is not a block. This applies to the entire document. You can see, “Uncategorized, no.” “PH factor, no.” “Soil” doesn’t apply. But the category I’m going to use here is “Pests.” What’s nice is these words can be used for other– Or, these categories can be used for other posts. In fact, that’s the purpose of setting up categories, is again, to group your posts. This will be very handy for people who want to have access to older content.

Say OK to that. So we have “Pests,” but I wanted it to be “Pest control,” so we’ll get to editing that later. You say, “I made a mistake. What do you do about that?” I’ll show you. I also want to do, “How much water?” So, we’ll go over here, “How much,” and we’re going to say– We’re going to add– Let’s see. Let’s go over to “Edit,” we’ll go over to “Categories.” Definitely not uncategorized, and this time, I’m going to add another new category, “Water.” I’m going to add that category, and this also deals with soil, so let’s get the soil clicked off here as well. OK, and again I’m going to update. You might be wondering, “What is this ‘Parent’ business over here?” There is a way to add sub-categories, so you’d have let’s say a generic or a more general term, and then something more specific. The more general term would be the “Parent” category.

I’m not going to get into categories– Or, “Parent” categories because once you know how to set this up, you’ll know how to do “Parent” and “Child” categories. OK, so that’s that. Now let’s have a look and see where we are at this point. Go to the blog, and we’ll see here’s our categories. If I go to the category for “Soil,” you’ll see what’s nice is that both articles that are using the term soil are listed here on this archive page. In fact, this is the category’s archive page for “Soil.” So, that’s nice. Now, this theme displays this information this way, and different themes are going to display it a little bit different or maybe not at all. If I had 400 posts, of which 20 of them were assigned the word “Soil” as a category, this is how they would be displayed.

OK, now “What about that little mistake I made? What about ‘Garden security?’ You didn’t do that one.” I’m going to do all this right now. So, for that, I’ll do things a little bit different to show you that in WordPress categories are a big deal. I’m going to go over to “Posts,” “All posts.” For that, I’m going to go right over here to “Garden security” down here, “Quick edit,” and you can select your category right from here. So, “Pests” I can’t create it ut you can select the ones that you’ve already set up like I have over here. That’s fine, and I’m going to update that so now “Garden security” has been assigned to category “Pests.”

All right, but I said I made a little mistake somewhere, because “Pests,” it should be “Pest control.” So how do you fix that? What’s nice is they have this whole, what I call the “Categories management page,” so all this is under “Posts.” OK, “All posts,” “Add a post,” so “Categories.” From here, I’m going to manage my categories. I can create categories, rename categories, reassign them to different posts rather than to go into each individual post and do that. This is going to be handy. For example, “Pests,” I made a mistake. I meant “Pest control,” so I’m going to edit that category to “Pest control,” and this will automatically update everything. I’m going to save this and now go back to the– I could just hit the back button over here one more time. Let me refresh the page, and you’ll see it’s “Pest control.” OK, and if I look over here to the far right it tells me the count, meaning how many times or for how many posts– Meaning, how many posts were assigned the term “Pest control.” If I click on that, this is nice, and it gives me a list of the two that were assigned. I could also do this too if I wanted to view the archive page, the pest control archive page. See?

“Category, pest control.” It’s over here are the two, all right. That’s fine. Now I mentioned I’m a big believer in always assigning at least one category to each post, and never to use “Uncategorized.” That’s totally meaningless. Can I delete “Uncategorized?” No. That cannot be deleted, but we can use a different word. We could use a different category. I’m just going to create a category right here, and I’m going to create one just called “General.” OK, we’re going to use that, and I’m going to save it. All right, but how do we get it so that if I don’t use a category, the term “General” will be assigned to the post? For that, I’m going to go over to “Settings,” “Writing,” and right at the very top it says “Default post category.” Where here it says “Uncategorized,” I don’t want that. I could choose any one of these, but I created one just called “General”, so that’s exactly what I want. I click on that, and that will now be my default post category, so if I forget to assign a post category, the term “General” will be assigned. One other thing I want to show you, if you go back to “Posts,” remember I said if you know how to do posts you know do tags? Because tags are a little bit easier to do but not as full-featured as categories. Here is the tags management page, or it’s very similar to the category management page.

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Mod 4 - Blogging

Running Time:  4:46

Blogs have common features that are easy to detect and work with.

I examine 3 different blogs showing you how they are displayed on the blog page.

Most WordPress Themes have these elements which are used as a link to the blog post itself:

  • The Blog Title
  • The Featured Image
  • The Continuing Reading Linnk

Blog posts also commonly show these elements (which may also be a link):

    • The Author’s Name

Date Published

Blogging can be a collaborative experience. WordPress makes it easy for you to have guest authors so you don’t have to do all the work.

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Links Shown In This Video

Transcript Of This Video

Before we get into learning how to blog, let me explain a little bit about blogging in general and show you some of the common characteristics of just about any blog. Now, the word “Blog” is really short for the word “Webblog.” In the olden days, people thought of it is a diary, but don’t think of it that way anymore. Do think of it as your opportunity to publish new, fresh, and important content for your audience. That’s the purpose of a blog. So here is the prototype site, and I have four different blog posts, also known as articles. They’re published in chronological order so the oldest one is furthest down on the list and the newest one is right over here. This theme, 2017, sets up the blog in a particular way. That is, first you have the title of the post, and then you have the featured image, and then I have a little bit of content over here that starts the post and then “Continue reading.” That’s the pattern we’ll see for almost all themes, not necessarily will be true for your theme, but in most cases, you’ll see something like this. Each one of these that is the title the feature damage and the “Continued reading” all lead you to the same place, which is where you can read the entire article. OK, so featured image, article, and that would be about it. If I wanted to return to the blog page, I could see all of my posts. Again, there are only four. I could have more than four listed, but four it is for now. The other thing too is if I click on “Continue reading,” the user doesn’t start from the very top but picks up from the point that they’re reading. All these other elements on the page such as these sidebar widgets, I will take up in adding sidebar widgets. For now, all I want to do is focus on the main concepts of blogging, which is the title, the content itself, and image. Not pay attention or get distracted to other things. Let’s look at another example. This is a site that I keep up to show off for this course, and that is an old blog of mine. You can see in this case, on this blog page I’ve got the title, featured image, and a few words that start the article. I have 10 blog posts listed here. I could have more or less, and it depends on what I want. That’s pretty easy to adjust. If I click on any one of these, in this case, the featured image is not listed above the article, and it’s just inside of the post itself. That’s the nature of this particular theme.

But going back to this blog page again, you’ll see the core ideas. The title, the featured image, and the content. Let’s take a look at one more. This is one that’s popular with the WordPress community, and it’s WP Tavern, and it is a blog that posts all about– You guessed it, WordPress. It’s very timely articles, and sometimes they post three times or four times a day. I read it quite a bit. So, again. Featured image, title, and “Read more.” Same idea. If I click on the “Read more,” in this case I’m taken to the top of the page and then I can continue reading. Then it has the sidebars and social icons, and stuff like that. But that’s not important right now. Did you notice on each post you also get the author’s name and the date that it was published? That’s true in almost every theme that I’ve ever seen. Let’s go back and look at the theme over here. If I click on “Getting Started,” we’ll see the date and– Guess who published it? Those are the core blogging features you’ll see in just about every WordPress theme.

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