5 Free Essential Tools for Improving Your Blog

Maintaining a top-notch blog can be one of the more challenging aspects of managing the online presence of your business.

Thankfully, there is a wide variety of free tools available that can help ease the burden of your workload and improve the efficacy of your efforts.

Below you’ll find a short list of the top five free essential blogging tools, and how they can be used to improve your own blog. From tools for social outreach to basic brainstorming, you’ll be sure to find at least one thing that can give your blog a boost.

Easy Tweet Embed

The easier it is to share your content, the more likely people are to do it. That’s where Easy Tweet Embed comes in. This free app enables you to create pre-populated tweet text any every one of your posts, which can let your readers retweet what you have to say without depending on them to create their own tweet. These pre-populated fields are also great for capturing attention from influential members of Twitter because any tagged individuals receive a @mention every time a tweet is created. In short, Easy Tweet Embed allows you to boost traffic to your Twitter account, promote your content, and markedly improve engagement with your fans.

BuzzSumo

Whether you’re brainstorming for new ideas, working on improving your email outreach, or trying to give an edge to a social media marketing campaign, BuzzSumo can help. Simply provide BuzzSumo with a domain name and it will offer you an extensive set of search results for the most popular content on that domain. These results incorporate some of the most successful social media networks, including Google+, Twitter, Facebook, and much more. You can also search by author, enabling you to audit an individual’s body of work, or simply study influential members of your niche for your own benefit. And if you don’t want to revisit BuzzSumo every week to keep up with the latest results, you can even set up an email alert for one of your searches for perpetual coverage.

StayFocusd

For anyone who uses the Google Chrome browser and has a hard time remaining on task while working, StayFocusd is the answer. This app allows you to disable specific websites, or to set time allowances for those sites, allowing you to stay on task and cut down on how often you indulge in distractions like Facebook. The next time you’re struggling to meet a deadline, consider using the StayFocusd App to help you keep your nose to the grindstone.

Internet Archive

Does your blog involve audio or podcasts? If so, you may find Internet Archive to be an essential addition to your blogging arsenal. Although you’ll hear more fanfare about paid services like Podomatic or Soundcloud, they can quickly become expensive if your needs exceed their free storage limits. By contrast, Internet Archive offers one of the Internet’s most secure and reliable audio file storage services, all at no cost. Setting up your own account is almost instant, and using the service is just as simple. After you’ve upload your first file, you can embed it as an mp3 directly on your site, and it will sound as crisp and clear as any of the Internet’s most premium hosting solutions.

Namechk

One of the earliest stages of preliminary research for any blogging project involves ensuring your desired usernames and hashtags are not in use on popular social media sites. Sadly, this can be an incredibly time-consuming project involving dozens of hours on just as many sites. That’s where Namechk can help. This free app allows you to search almost every social media site online, more than 150 in total. Just provide the right keywords and Namechk will let you know where they’re in use and which are available. Not only can this save you a great deal of time, it may introduce you to a variety of networking sites you’d overlooked.

5 Best WordPress Gallery Plugins

For thousands of sites across the Internet, gallery plugins are the cornerstone of multimedia presentation. By allowing you to showcase beautiful high-rise images of screenshots, full-length videos, and other illustrations, a gallery plugin can help add a touch of professionalism and style to any site in only a few minutes.

But it’s not all about appearances. Gallery plugins are also designed to make the management of your multimedia files as easy as possible, even allowing you to upload and publish in bulk. Many of the latest plugins also offer a variety of extras including animated effects, social network integration, and more.

Although there’s hundreds of WordPress plugins to choose from, only a handful have stood the test of time and proven to be worthwhile. Below we’ll look at the top five, chosen for their unique features, ease-of-use, and overall value.

NextGEN Gallery

With well over 10 million downloads, NextGEN is the single most popular gallery plugin on all of WordPress, as well as one of the most popular plugins in existence. Like you’d expect from such a popular plugin, you’ll find everything you need to batch upload and sort through entire albums of content. You’ll also find multiple display styles, and a wide degree of control over everything from lightbox effects to transitions.

NextGEN also has some of the most advanced gallery management to find in any plugin. For example, you can edit images directly through NextGEN, cropping thumbnails, adding watermarks, and even editing metadata. Unfortunately, there is one drawback. Because NextGEN is moderately difficult to use, at one point or another, you’ll probably find yourself digging through the support section of WordPress for a little help, but that should be only a minor problem considering all the benefits.

Social Gallery

Social sharing buttons have become a staple for nearly every type of website. The Social Gallery plugin aims to kill two birds with one stone by offering those social sharing features alongside a highly functional social media optimized image gallery. You can like, pin, and tweet directly from the gallery, making it easy to drive traffic where you want it. As far as the gallery itself, it’s been efficiently designed to allow users to scroll through content by tapping their arrow keys, similar to browsing images on Facebook. Although customization options are somewhat limited compared to many of the other entries on this list, you’ll still find a healthy 40+ animations and transitions that can help you style this plugin perfectly.

Justified Image Grid

Justified is a fully responsive plugin allows you to sort and align your thumbnails with the use of jQuery, similar to how Google image search and Flickr work. Compared to standard WordPress galleries, this can help make your content far more accessible. That accessibility extends further due to the fact that you can load content directly from Instagram, Facebook, or a variety of other social media image sources. And if you want to scrape feeds from the Internet, you can draw images from RSS feeds, videos from YouTube, images from deviant art, posts from Tumblr, and much more.

This plugin also allows you to control virtually every aspect of your image gallery, from the magnification icon to the border around your images. This includes over 300 settings you can use to set up your gallery just the way you want. So if you’re looking for a gallery plugin that will comfortably squeeze into just about any space on your site, Justified may be just what you need.

PhotoMosaic

If you’re looking for straightforward, no-nonsense photo plugin, you can’t go wrong with PhotoMosaic. Installation is as easy as opening the WordPressdefault gallery creation, and then selecting PhotoMosaic as your default gallery. There’s no further set up required, and your page will be instantly transformed into a striking and fresh layout that allows you to easily navigate through a huge body of images. Of course, you can still fully customize the columns, image links, and loading animations, but the real strength of this plugin is how hands off and simple it is to use.

TubePress

If you want to incorporate videos with your gallery, TubePress is the right place to begin. This simple to use plugin gives you more than a half a dozen controls over embedding video content from YouTube or Vimeo. All you have to do is adjust presentation settings to your liking and a gallery will be automatically created for you and placed anywhere that you insert the short codes it provides. This plugin also allows for you to display videos that are based on a specific user, a playlist, the user’s favorites, popular videos on YouTube, or even related videos to those you select. If you want to play videos in your gallery, you can’t go wrong with TubePress.

5 Best Social Sharing Plugins For WordPress

Share buttons are one of the best ways to get your readers to share your content on their own social networks.

Apart from being SEO-friendly, share buttons are also an excellent way to create an element of social proofing on your site, by allowing you to visually show how popular your content is to readers.

But with dozens of plugins to choose from, which share buttons are perfect for you?

Below we’ll look five of the best social sharing plugins for WordPress, what makes them popular, and what they can provide to your social sharing effort.

Digg Digg

Digg Digg

Approaching a million downloads on WordPress, this social sharing plugin is designed to get the job done and look amazing at the same time. You can display buttons to all the major networks, like Twitter, Facebook Like, Google+, Reddit, Twitter, StumbleUpon, WebBlend, Tumblr, and more.

There’s also a reasonably large range of customization options, including a floating bar. Best of all, Digg Digg was sharply designed with a lazy loading feature, so it will never be a drag on your site’s performance.

ShareThis

ShareThis

This widget allows your readers to select out of 120 different social channels on the Internet to share with. These include all the big channels, like Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter, and several niche network channels as well. The sharing buttons can be large or small depending on your site, and you can even post an add counter alongside your sharing bar.

Although ShareThis might not be the most interesting plugin on this list, it’s one of the most reliable, with nearly 2 million downloads to date.

AddThis

AddThis

AddThis can help you promote your content over more than 300 of the most popular social networks and content discovery sites. This includes sites like Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Pinterest, and Tumblr. The AddThis button itself is fairly inconspicuous, it loads quickly, and it’s easy to recognize as a sharing tool. Although this plugin lacks a broad set of broad functionality, it’s effective as what it does.

The creators of AddThis also offer similar synergistic plugins designed to help you increase your follower count, implement social authentication, and share your trending content.

Shareaholic

Shareaholic

The Shareaholic plugin combines the power of three apps to help share your content online, with an emphasis on creating social conversation on your channels. This tool includes floating share buttons, social analytics for sharing metrics, share counters for all the major networks, and full sharing support for practically every major network. In short, Shareaholic is a fast and secure no-nonsense solution.

Socialize

Socialize

Designed with the aim of making sharing buttons easy, efficient, and highly actionable, Socialize goes the extra mile to promote your content. This is also one of the few plugins that encourages you to be selective in offering the sharing buttons you want to offer, encouraging your readers to select the networks that are most relevant for you and your content.

With only 12 share buttons, this plugin provides an intentionally narrow experience, probably with the understanding that people become psychologically overwhelmed when too many options are available. With only 170,000 downloads to date, while this isn’t the most popular app on WordPress, it’s one of the best for discriminately getting your content where you want it.

4 Best Cheap WordPress Hosting

If you have spent any time searching for WordPress hosting solutions, you already know there is no shortage of options available online. Top quality service, support, and unlimited everything simply is not that hard to find these days. Unfortunately, many web developers learn only after signing a lengthy contract or paying months or years in advance that the hosting provider they have chosen can not quite live up to these larger than life sales pitches.

Fortunately, there are at least four providers who can. DreamHost, Bluehost, HostGator, and JustHost are four of the cheapest and most reliable WordPress hosting platforms on the market today. While any of these services would be ideal for just about any type of WordPress hosting, you may find it worth your time to give careful consideration to the subtle differences between these four options to decide which would be the ideal solution for you.

DreamHost

DreamHost

Founded in 1996, DreamHost has an established and respectable industry record spanning almost two decades. This Los Angeles based hosting provider is one of the most experienced in serving both local and international customers. While comparably more expensive than the other hosting options on this list, with their shared hosting plan priced typically priced around $8.95 per month, DreamHost routinely offers seasonal discounts of rates as low as $3.95 per month.

Newer web developers may wish to steer clear of DreamHost on the grounds that their control panel is not intuitively designed for amateurs, especially compared to cPanel. However, more experienced developers will appreciate DreamHost’s most prominent features including a 97 day money back guarantee, a 100% server uptime guarantee, a free $100 credit for Google AdWords and free domain name registration.

Lastly it is important to keep in mind that while DreamHost offers free e-mail support, live chat and phone support will cost you an additional $9.95 per month. Again, although this lowered level of support will not be significant to more experienced developers, amateurs may be able to find a package more suitable to them elsewhere.

Features

  • 2 Week Free Trial
  • Free Domain Name
  • 100% Uptime Guarantee
  • Auto-Updates
  • Unlimited – Domains, MySQL Databases,  Bandwidth, Diskspace, and Email
  • WordPress 1-Click Install
  • Great Support

DreamHost Review

BlueHost

BlueHost

BlueHost’s professional web hosting rides the balance between high quality and affordable service. BlueHost’s shared hosting stats at $4.95 per month and includes all the unlimited resources that you would expect of a modern competitive hosting company. This includes unlimited hosting space, email accounts, file transfer, domain hosting, and so on.

To make things even easier, BlueHost also offers their own exclusive one click installation for scripts as well as support for almost 300 applications, including WordPress. Technical support is another BlueHost strong point, with even the most basic BlueHost package including phone, live chat, e-mail, and a comprehensive online FAQ.

Even though BlueHost is one of the largest hosting service providers, they guarantee an average waiting time of under a minute to most inquiries, making it an ideal choice for anyone who anticipates spending time with customer support.

Features

  • Anytime Money-Back Guarantee
  • Unlimited Space and Bandwidth
  • Unlimited Email Accounts
  • Free Domain Name
  • 1-Click WordPress Installation
  • Support team with WordPress knowledge
  • Free WordPress and themes installation
  • 24×7 professional customer service

BlueHost Review

HostGator

HostGator

Unlike DreamHost and BlueHost, HostGator’s most basic hosting plan only offers support for one hosted domain – a domain that is not free of charge. But while domain support is not a major strength, HostGator still has many things to offer. This includes free automatic site backups, custom Cronjobs, an automatic script installer, and of course cPanel.

Starting as low as $3.96 per month, HostGator also offers a 99.9% uptime guarantee, unlimited storage, unlimited bandwidth, and even comprehensive 24/7 customer support. That means that even you encounter a hosting problem on Christmas morning, HostGator will have someone ready to help.

If you are a professional web developer, you may appreciate HostGator’s comprehensive support for nearly all modern hosting features. This includes support for PHP 5, Ruby on Rails, Perl, Python, SSI, Curl, MySQL Databases, and of course WordPress. And if you are interested designing a particularly handsome and complicated page and need support for all the bells and whistles that your page will need to shine, even HostGator’s simplest and cheapest hosting package includes everything you need.

Features

  • 100% WordPress Compatible
  • 1-Click WordPress QuickInstall
  • Unlimited Disk Space & Bandwidth
  • 45 Day Money Back Guarantee
  • 99.9% Uptime Guarantee
  • 24/7/365 Tech Support

HostGator Review

JustHost

JustHost

While JustHost’s standard pricing for the most basic hosting package starts at $6.95, much like DreamHost, it is not uncommon to find highly discounted promotional pricing as low as $2.25 per month.  At pricing that low, you would expect JustHost to have to cut as many corners as possible on service simply to stay in business – but you would be wrong.

JustHost’s cheapest hosting package includes unlimited space, unlimited transfer, unlimited domain hosting, unlimited MySQL Databases, free domain registration, free setup, and even an anytime money back guarantee.

You might also expect JustHost to have cut corners on customer support, but between phone, chat, and email support, the only thing lacking is live chat. While the JustHost free script library is not quite as comprehensive as HostGator’s, it still contains all the essential scripts you need to run a successful WordPress blog.

Features

  • Anytime Money Back Guarantee
  • Unlimited Space and Bandwidth
  • Unlimited Email Accounts
  • Unlimited MySQL Databases
  • Free Domain Name
  • WordPress One-Click Install
  • $100 Google Advertising Offer
  • $25 Yahoo Ad Credits
  • 24/7 technical support

How to Disable Comments in WordPress

From keeping reader attention on more relevant content to cutting down on spam posts or inappropriate conversation, there are many reasons why you might want to disable comments on WordPress.

No matter your reason, you should be pleased to know that disabling comments on WordPress is quite easy.

Disable Comments by Default

By default, comments are enabled for every new WordPress blog.  If you want to disable comments, you can change the comments to be disabled by default on the Settings tab of your WordPress blog. Under the Settings header, select Discussion to load the discussion settings options.

WordPress Discussion

Unselect the option that reads “Allow people to post comments on new articles”, you can find it under the “Default article settings” heading.

WordPress Default article settings

Automatically Closing Comments

If the reason you’re disabling comments is technical, you should also consider browsing through the remainder of the Discussion Settings options. You can find several ways to give you control over detailed aspects of your comment permissions, including the ability to automatically disable comments on articles older than a certain period of time.

Automatically Close WordPress Comments

In the Other comment settings, Just check the box next to the Automatically close comments on articles older than [ ] days option, fill in the number of days, and save.

Disable Comments on One Post

If you’re looking to change the comments settings for posts that have already been published, the process is somewhat different. Head to the Posts or Pages page and search for the post that you would like to change permissions for.

Once you’ve found the post, look in the edit screen for the Discussion module. If you can’t find the discussion module, you can bring it up by selecting Screen Options in the top right section of your WordPress dashboard, and checking the “Discussion” box.

Enable or Disable Comments on Individual Post

Here you can deselect the “Allow comments” button to disable comments for your old posts. Do not forget to save the post after you change any comment setting.

Bulk Comment Disabling

You can’t change comments for all published pages in one go, but you can use bulk edit to get several pages done at the same time. Just head to your dashboard, find the Posts button, and select “All Posts.” From here you can manually choose the posts that you would like to modify or use provided check box to select every post on that page.

WordPress Bulk Comment Disabling

Once you’ve got your posts ready to go, select the edit button from the Bulk Actions menu, and then select “Apply”, and change the Comments option from “Allow” to “Do Not Allow.” That’s it! Just click the update button and repeat as many times as necessary to disable commenting on every page where it’s necessary.

7 Best WordPress eCommerce Plugins

With the almost endless variety of ecommerce plugins available today, it’s easy to get lost in the search for the plugin that is ideal for you and your individual needs.

Fortunately this isn’t a search you have to undertake on your own, and putting aside the differences in available features, there’s also a significant and established industry record to that can be taken into account.

With these two factors in mind, below is a list of the best WordPress ecommerce plugins as well as a brief consideration of what make these options excel in a highly competitive marketplace.

WP-eCommerce

WP e-Commerce

Long before many of the WordPress ecommerce options available today ever existed, WP-eCommerce was already one of the most trusted names in the market. WP-eCommerce utilizes what is now a fairly standard business model for ecommerce plugins by offering their service as a free download with a range of useful extras that can be purchased as add-ons if or when needed.

The free WP-eCommerce plugin includes features like coupon codes, discounts, complete control over the calculations determining shipping costs, product RSS, support for multiple languages and currencies, support for PayPal/Google Checkout, inventory control, and even a sales overview page. While purchased extras are not required, they do allow you to integrate your business with anything from FedEx Shipping to the USA e-pay service.

Jigoshop

Jigoshop

Jigoshop is another name that is no stranger to the world of WordPress e-commerce. Much like WP-eCommerce, Jigoshop is available free for download or packaged for sale with a variety of premium themes through Jigoshop. Because these premium themes have been developed alongside Jigoshop itself, they combine professional grade WordPress design alongside simple ecommerce integration that enables you to get the whole package for much cheaper than the cost of designing and implementing a typical ecommerce site.

Jigoshop’s features include inventory tracking, discount codes, tax/shipping control, customer accounts, and of course order management. Jigoshop also supports extensions which can further its basic functionality to support everything from the most exotic payment gateways to simple marketing enhancement plugins. And because Jigoshop is an established name in e-commerce, a variety of third party developers have flocked to the service as grounds for creating some of the most useful extensions to the service.

WooCommerce

WooCommerce

WooThemes is the world famous outlet for some of the most widely regarded premium themes in the world of WordPress, and WooCommerce has been quick to live up to that reputation. One of the most significant advantages of the WooCommerce platform is that there is a huge range of available themes that already have full integration with the service. This naturally includes all of the WooThemes premium themes, but also many third party themes as well. With many of the same core services as Jigoshop and WP-eCommerce, WooThemes is downloadable for free with a variety of useful extensions available for nominal fees.

Cart66

Cart66

Cart66 is divided into a free version and a professional version with a small number of licensing options for the latter. The free version offers the more basic features you needed of an e-commerce platform like currency support, order management, promotional support, and control over tax and shipping costs.

But for those who come to love what Cart66 has to offer, the professional version offers several unique features that range from highly niche business needs to recurring payments and membership access content. It’s also worth noting that the professional version of Cart66 supports full integration with the ever popular Gravity Forms plugin. And most remarkably, both versions of Cart66 allow you to sell products from any page – including Facebook.

Ecwid

Ecwid

Short for ecommerce widgets, Ecwid is a fully loaded ecommerce plugin that can be added to any blog, WordPress or otherwise. What makes Ecwid unique that it utilizes a have your cake and eat it too approach to ecommerce. This is done by offering both flexibility of professional ecommerce platforms as well as the performance and speed of do-it-yourself ecommerce solutions.

With both free and premium plans available, full AJAX support, and some of the fastest infrastructure of any ecommerce plugin, there’s little room for error with Ecwid. You can also expect seamless updates to the Ecwid plugin that automatically enable new features whenever they’re added to the service.

Shopp

Shopp

Unlike many of the plugins present on this list, there is no free version of Shopp. As a premium grade plugin, a single website license for Shopp will set you back $55. But in a world where you usually get what you pay for, it’s safe to say Shopp is worth every penny. Fully integrated with PayPal Standard/Express, 2Checkout, Mollie, FirstData, Stripe, FedEx, UPS, USPS, Amazon, Shipwire, and more, Shopp is truly the gold standard when it comes to e-commerce plugins.

Designed specifically for WordPress integration, Shopp includes some of the simplest administration tools of any e-commerce plugin, making it an ideal starting point for novices. It also includes the widgets, custom menus, and ecommerce post types that are ideal for WordPress blogs.

eShop

eShop

With a little more than half a million downloads to date, eShop is one of the more popular and accessible plugins on this list. Widely used in ecommerce, eShop includes support for basic statistics, sales data gathering, shipping options, automated email purchase confirmations, stock control, product options, and much more. Fully supported and persistently updated to meet the emerging demands of ecommerce and technology, eShop’s simplistic yet reliable approach to ecommerce is ideal for anyone who wants as many features as possible without having to pay a dime.

WPEngine Review

Founded in 2010, WP Engine is one of the world’s first WordPress oriented hosting platforms. While the need for a WordPress specific platform might not be clear at first, truth be told, there are more than enough reasons to opt for such a service over traditional hosting.

Anyone with WordPress experience knows that the three major issues with the WordPress platform are site security, scalability, and speed. And because WP Engine’s service focuses specifically on overcoming these three issues, some of the world’s most popular WordPress blogs have already flocked to WP Engine, including FourSquare and SoundCloud.

Main Features

One of the most significant features of WP Engine is not found in its hardware, but in its employees. WP Engine’s services are fully managed not by generic IT staff but by experienced WordPress experts. Perhaps this is one of the reasons that WP Engine is able to bring to life their guarantee of quality service.

One of the major concerns facing any serious blogger is just how scalable their blog will be as it grows in notoriety. The cheapest available hosting plans are attractive to new WordPress bloggers for obvious reasons, but if your blog starts to take off, that hosting may start to act as a bottleneck for the growth of your site.

In a worst case scenario, your blog may even get denied service by your host as it is no longer cost effective for them to host for you. WP Engine circumnavigates this problem by promising not only to never deny continued service for blogs that explode in popularity, but also to guarantee 100% service uptime – a promise backed up by prorated account credit.

And because the WP Engine servers have been optimized specifically for WordPress hosting, these highly optimized servers are consistently reviewed by webmasters and users alike as fast beyond comparison. And you do not have to take that on faith, simply load up any blog on the WP Engine service and browse around for a few seconds to get a feel for the kind of speed you can expect. Many users report average blog response times dropping from 900ms to 500ms once on the WP Engine service.

Infrastructure

WP Engine’s servers include automatic engine upgrades and malware scans as well as automatic daily backup. These elements combined allow WP Engine to offer a hacker-free hosting service guarantee, meaning that security is the last thing you have to worry about. You can also expect full hardware RAID, servers with maxed out memory, comprehensive firewall protection, and enterprise grade architecture.

And if you are focused on serving international demographics, you will appreciate the fact that WP Engine has datacenters in the UK and Asia as well as the United States. Choosing between these datacenters comes at no additional cost and the option is available for even the cheapest level of WP Engine service.

Plans and Pricing

Among the extensive list of pros favoring WP Engine, there are a handful of cons. One of the most common complaints against WP Engine is its pricing, with personal hosting starting at $29/month, professional hosting at $99/month, and the business hosting plan at $249/month.

To be clear, the personal plan includes support for one WordPress site, 25,000 monthly visits and 10 GB of storage. The professional hosting plan extends support for 10 sites and 100,000 visits, as well as doubles available storage to 20 GB. The business plan offers support for 25 sites, 400,000 visits, and 30 GB of storage.

While these price tags may seem comparable high at first, it is important to realize they are far from unfair or unreasonable, provided that you are actually going to utilize the number of allotted visits. After all, reliable WordPress security and maintenance plugins can cost you between $8 and $40 per month depending on who you buy from, and this security is included in the price of WP Engine hosting.

But if you are running a relatively low traffic WordPress blog it may be suitable for you to start with a cheaper hosting service that offers so-called unlimited hosting for between $7 and $10 per month and only move to a dedicated WP host like WP Engine once your blog begins to pick up some traffic.

Customer Service

As you might expect from a WordPress oriented hosting service, focusing exclusively on WordPress hosting allows WP Engine to provide an incredibly experienced and invaluable set of customer service representatives.

Keep in mind, while just about any hosting service can provide you with someone who can answer a phone within two minutes or reply to your email in a single business day, that response will not do you much good unless the person on the other end of the line has the WordPress experience necessary to help you with your problem.

Final Thoughts

WP Engine is not ideal for low traffic WordPress sites, so you may want to hold off from purchasing service there until your blog is collecting at least 10,000 hits per month.

However, if you are running a medium or high traffic site, if you think there is a reasonable chance your site might explode in popularity by hitting the front pages of a major social media site, if you are worried about DDoS attacks, or if you are simply tired of dealing with the tedious maintenance of your WordPress blog, WP Engine could be a perfect solution to all of your problems.

And with WP Engine’s risk-free 60 day money-back guarantee, there is nothing to lose in giving it a try.

WPEngine

How To Install WordPress On DreamHost

DreamHost, who has been a WordPress partner since 2005, has one of the most knowledgeable tech support teams for hosting WordPress accounts. They are hosting well over 750,000 WordPress blogs and websites globally.

It provides a free Auto Installer and Auto Upgrader for hosted WordPress accounts, as well as an option to upgrade to DreamPress – an optimized version of WordPress.

DreamHost hosting package comes with a free domain registration. You get a .com, .org, .net, or .info domain free for the life of your hosting. The domain will be registered in your name and you are free to take it to another hosting company without any problem.

Register at DreamHost

1. If you are not a DreamHost customer, Go to DreamHost to Signup.

2. Enter your Email address, Password, and click “Continue”.

Enter Your Email and password

3. Replace “mynewdomain.com” with your domain name, and click “Continue”.

Enter Your Domain Name

4. Select the plan (1 Year prepaid at $119.40 or 2 Years prepaid at $214.80), and click “Continue”.

Pick A Plan

5. Enter your billing address details and click “Continue”.

Credit Card Billing Address

6. Enter some more details, tick the box, and click “Continue”.

More Information

7. Now enter your payment information.

Payment Info

8. Click “Continue” and you will be taken to DreamHost dashboard.

Install WordPress on DreamHost

Installing WordPress on Dreamhost is very simple. You just need go to the goodies section on Panel and use the One-Click Install to automatically install WordPress.

1. Click on “One-Click Installs”.

DreamHost One Click Install

2. Scroll down to WordPress, and click it.

WordPress DreamHost Install

3. A pop-up window will open. Click “Custom Installation” button.

DreamHost Once CLick Installer

4. Install to: From the drop-down list, choose the domain where you want to install WordPress.

Select Database: Automatically Create Database

Deluxe Install: Check “Deluxe Install” if you want to includes free, open source, themes from Automattic, a standard selection of plugins, and security enhancement.

DreamHost Custom One Click Installer

4. Click the “Install it for me now!”

You will now get an email from DreamHost with final instructions to configure WordPress.

Click http://yourdomain.com/wp-admin/install.php

Enter website title, your user name, your password (twice) and your e-mail address. Leave the box checked if you would like your blog to appear in search engines like Google, Bing, etc.

Enter Your Information

Once you fill in all the information, press the Install WordPress button.

WordPress Login Page

Your WordPress blog has been installed.

Visit your blog’s login page by placing “wp-admin” after your domain name (e.g. http://example.com/wp-admin). Now login WordPress using your username and password.

5 Best WordPress Hosting

Whether you are maintaining a website for business or social reasons, you want smart-looking pages that people will enjoy visiting. In order to make an attractive site, you will need an application to help you manage your content and a host that will allow you to present your creation.

WordPress is one of the most popular content management and blog publishing applications on the web today. It was first released in 2003 as a basic blog engine, but has become a fully featured, fully customizable website creation tool used by millions of individuals, businesses and organizations around the world.

Today WordPress powers 18% of the web, presenting everything from corporate websites to simple blogs. WordPress themes make building a website easy for do-it-yourselfers, and thousands of free plugins provide enough variety to make everyone’s site unique.

No matter how good WordPress is, it will not work without a web hosting. To run WordPress your web hosting provider just needs to have a couple of things:

  • PHP version 5.2.4 or greater
  • MySQL version 5.0 or greater

Apache or Nginx as the most robust and featureful server for running WordPress, but any server that supports PHP and MySQL will work.

Hundreds of thousands of web hosts meet the minimum requirements for running WordPress, but we recommend you to choose only from the below given web hosting service providers.

WordPress needs the right hosting environment to reach its full potential. With any of the five hosting sites below, WordPress should bloom at its best.

Best WordPress Hosting Service 2013

DreamHost

DreamHost

You get unlimited bandwidth and storage, and a free domain name at DreamHost for only $8.95 a month. DreamHost makes it easy to download WordPress to work within its site.

Once you have set up an account with DreamHost, you just log in and click on “One Click Installs”. A page will load showing icons of several applications that can be downloaded to work with DreamHost. Find, and click on the WordPress icon and then follow the simple instructions.

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HostGator

HostGator

HostGator‘s installation process for WordPress is a bit more complicated, requiring a few more clicks than DreamHost, but it is still pretty straightforward.  HostGator has a short on-site tutorial to help you with the installation, so it should be no problem.

Since its inception in 2003, HostGator has won a slew of awards. The most recent was Daily Host News’ Editor’s Choice Award.

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BlueHost

BlueHost

BlueHost not only recommends WordPress to its customers; it is so enthusiastic about the tool that it devotes pages to WordPress’s history and posts YouTube tutorials to make sure that web builders are getting the full range of benefits that the application has to offer.

The one click WordPress installation process could not be simpler, and their servers are set up to optimize WordPress sites.  Like most other sites, BlueHost offers free domain names, unlimited bandwidth, and 24/7 tech support. It receives high scores in independent reviews.

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WPEngine

WPEngine

The WP in WPEngine stands for WordPress.  As its name implies, they specialize in hosting WordPress blogs.  As the founders of WPEngine explain, “We created WPEngine because we just wanted to host it.”  Since the site is devoted to hosting only one web-building technology, every technician is a WordPress expert.

WPEngine is a little more expensive than the other top hosting sites; its services start at $29 a month and work up from there.  However, they get very high marks on independent reviews.

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JustHost

JustHost

JustHost is budget hosting site owned by the same company that owns BlueHost. It has the same features and is in the same price range as the other top sites.

It is best used for moderate-traffic sites like personal blogs and light ecommerce.  WordPress is easy to install and start using on this site.

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