Jetpack or How to Protect Your WordPress Site

WordPress has changed and grown in the last seven years. One of the upgrades is the addition of Jetpack.

When we upgraded from a WordPress hosted site to a self-hosted WordPress site, we knew we needed to make it more robust and able to handle the growth we experienced thanks in part to our posts on Yummly and other recipe sharing sites.

Jetpack offered more flexibility and a piece of mind with automatic site backups. We’ve been lucky and rarely needed this feature, but it is nice to know we don’t have to panic if someone clicks a wrong button and loses a banner or file.

Jetpack combines the most popular features of WordPress.com into a super-powered plugin for your self-hosted WordPress site:

  • Automated site backups, easy restores, and site migrations
  • Security scanning and automated fixes
  • Search engine optimization tools
  • Earn revenue with a high-quality ad program
  • High speed and ad-free content deliver network
  • Support from the a global team of WordPress experts.

Check out plans and pricing and sign up for Jetpack today!

We are happy to answer questions or share more about how and why we use WordPress. Just drop us a note or comment below!

(Note: The links in this post are affiliate links, and we will be compensated when you make a purchase by clicking on our links. Read our disclosure policy here.)

Advertisements

Why WordPress

You might have guessed this blog runs on WordPress. What you might now have guessed is why this blog runs on WordPress and has since we created it back in 2010.

Every once in a while someone will contact us (and yes, we do read the comments and emails!) and want to know who hosts our site and why we use WordPress in the first place.

My answer has always been WordPress is easy to use and fairly intuitive. You don’t need to know a lot of HTML to get started. You also don’t need to invest a lot of time into WordPress to publish your first posts or design a website. When I started, I knew nothing about coding or what constituted a good blog or website. I only knew it had to be:

  1. Easy to find
  2. Easy to read
  3. Easy to write on
  4. Easy to publish

WordPress met all of those requirements and over time has grown to include many more features. I’ve used the platform for seven years, which is a really long time to be committed to one space.

Turns out, WordPress likes it when I talk about them and approached us about sponsoring this post. In addition to

Here are a few additional reasons why WordPress.com is the best place to create your website or blog:

  • WordPress powers over 27 percent of the web, so your site joins the ranks of big names like The New York Times, CNN, and many more.
  • Get a custom domain name to claim your special address on the web.
  • Choose from among free and premium themes to create the perfect look for your site.
  • Broadcast and re-share your posts to promote your brand on social media such as Twitter and Facebook.
  • Attend live courses offered by our Happiness Engineers to get the most out of your site.

Check out plans and pricing and sign up for WordPress.com today.

We are happy to answer questions or share more about how and why we use WordPress. Just drop us a note or comment below!

(Note: The links in this post are affiliate links, and we will be compensated when you make a purchase by clicking on our links. Read our disclosure policy here.)

Stop using your startup status as an excuse to fail

Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question, “what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers.

Startup failure is far too common. In fact, it’s estimated that over 75 percent of venture-backed startups actually fail. In addition, half of all startups fail within the first five years, and up to 70 percent of those that survive will fall after a decade. It’s a worrying statistic, and many people have fooled themselves to believe that failure is to be expected and should even be embraced.

Embracing Failure is an Illusion
People will tell you that embracing failure is a natural part of being an entrepreneur. In fact, there are many famous entrepreneurs who have failed in business before being able to start something bigger and better. Big names like Steve Jobs, Steven Spielberg and even Colonel Sanders are known to have failed in the past, so people take that as a reason to assume failing is ok.

What people usually say is that failing teaches you and gives you experience. That’s absolutely correct—at least if you’re living in the old days before computers existed and everything is documented for the long term. So why rely on outdated information and traditions in order to become a successful entrepreneur? There are plenty of famous business owners who have written autobiographies and discussed many of their success secrets. Why not learn from these entrepreneurs and work to not fail instead?

With all of the information available, you should really rethink the mantra “failure is fine”. Sure, failure is fine in a sense that it puts you in your place, but anyone who says “we can learn from our failures” is taking the most difficult rote to learn the lessons. Whether it’s online guides, videos, webinars or biographies, there’s an entire world’s worth of information out there that you can use to learn how to run a business, be it a startup or a large corporation. Be resourceful, learn to use the tools and resources available to you and develop new ways to run your company. Don’t rely on outdated worth-of-mouth business practices and stop using the “we’re a startup” excuse as a means of failure.

Preparing Your Startup for the Long Haul
One of the first things you need to change is your way of thinking. You should understand that if you plan for failure, you’re going to fail. (Note: This is very different from having contingency plans, which is just good business.) You need to think about your business differently and you need to approach startups in a different way. Instead of thinking that you’ll use a startup to improve your knowledge and build future ideas, why not plan for success?

It doesn’t take long to search for tips for starting your business on the internet review ways to avoid failure.  You wouldn’t buy a car unless you knew how to drive properly (unless you’re extremely wealthy) and had done extensive research, so why would you start a business without first knowing how it works and how to improve?

In addition, if you’re going to act like a startup then you will likely be treated like a startup by investors and partners.  For instance, if you’ve grown enough that you need to hire an employee or two, you could rent office space to begin separating your home and work life. Employees are necessary if you want to grow your business, so don’t neglect the importance of bringing your startup out of the home office and into the corporate world when you’re ready.

Stop using your startup status as an excuse to fail. It’s pointless to manage a business if you’re not willing to go the whole way. What’s the point of starting a business if you’re going to end up failing anyway? It’s a waste of time and money, and who’s to say that your next attempt will be better if you go into it with the same mindset? How many businesses (and subsequently, jobs) will you ruin just to sate your need for “knowledge?” Learn about the industry, study how to run a business and get it right your first try to save time, money and effort.

Tips for starting your business

Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question, “what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers.

All businesses should focus on starting off in a strong way, but there are particular challenges for a solopreneur or home-based business. In this instance, you will usually be working on your own – or perhaps with only one other person. You probably want to build the business without having to rent an office space and that in itself can throw up particular challenges. Here are a few tips to help get you started!

Working On The Marketing
Don’t think you can’t successfully market your business from home. The truth is that some of the best marketing can be orchestrated without a large budget by using carefully crafted digital marketing techniques. Your business not only can’t survive without digital marketing – it is likely to find it the best possible way of gaining interest from potential customers and rival businesses alike. You should set up a website, develop strong SEO tactics to draw people in, and link it up to your social media accounts. 

The Beauty Of Goals
If you don’t have strong goals, it is much less likely that you will be able to develop your business in exactly the way you want. This also means your business is unlikely to grow. Create specific goals with a specific timeline That way, your efforts are much more likely to have results, which also means you can be sure of where you are heading with regard to your business on the whole. Be sure to have some specific, time-oriented goals, and you will be in a much better position on the whole.

Keep Focused On You
If you make the mistake of paying too much attention to businesses in your industry, it is likely to have a negative impact on your own company. Instead, try not to think too much about the way that others do business. Everyone has their own way, but the important thing is to figure out how you approach business, and to do that as fully as possible. As long as you can keep focused on your own business and goals, you will find that it really does make a difference to how quickly you succeed. It will also have the advantage of being much more enjoyable to do day after day.

When your business relies on deliveries

Editor’s Note: Here at Dispatches, we are always looking for ways to help our readers do things. For some of our readers, that means helping navigate the working world, for others, it means assisting in the ever challenging question, “what’s for dinner?” For still others, it means figuring out how to balance family life with everything else. In an effort to aid in all of these endeavors, we have collaborated on this article written specifically for our readers.

There’s a lot of thought that goes into running an e-commerce business. You have to find the products you want to sell, follow the trends and know how to capitalize on the trends you want to follow and you have crafted a promotional strategy that resonates with your customer base. However, none of these aspects of running an online store mean much if you have delivery issues.

The Importance Of Delivery
Good, reliable delivery is at the heart of the success of every online store. From the moment that your customers submit their order, a clock begins to tick down– a clock that represents the patience of your customers. From the moment of order, your business is on notice: you have to deliver their item in good time, in good condition. If you don’t, you risk losing that customer and having that customer tell all their friends and family about their bad experience. 

The most common complaint e-commerce businesses hear regarding delivery is that the item arrived damaged or in poor condition. It’s often assumed that the biggest delivery issue is lateness and items not arriving on time. This isn’t the case; customers are, for the most part, accustomed to the fact that sometimes there can be delivery hiccups that are nothing to do with the business where they purchased the item. They can be patient, provided they get their item eventually and you respond to requests for information. Customers can handle a delay, but customers can’t handle their item arriving damaged.

Tackling The Biggest Cause Of Customer Complains
If you only hear reports of the occasionally damaged parcel, it is something that comes with the nature of a business that relies on delivery, much like the airlines occasionally damage a piece of luggage. However, if you’re hearing this complaint consistently, you must implement changes. 

It’s time to get sleuthing. The first aspect to consider is the company who transports your goods. You want a carrier that knows how to treat packages properly; a company who understands that the slightest jostle can cause a problem. If you’re sending items by normal mail, send a test parcel to yourself and see how it survives the journey. If you’re not happy, switch to another courier provider.

Furthermore, if you’re sending overseas, then research different carriers you could try as an alternative to your current provider. You want to find a carrier with a long history in the business, one who understands the complexities of transporting goods; who knows the importance of using heavy duty caster balls for loading and unloading into the hold if necessary; a carrier with a solid record in logistics. You need experts, so you can be confident your goods are treated well throughout the transport process.

If Switching Provider Doesn’t Work
It could be an indication the problem is closer to home. If it’s not the provider that’s causing the problem, the only conclusion is that your method of packaging items isn’t as robust as it needs to be. You have to ensure that you are packaging items so they can survive transit. That means lots of bubble wrap and appropriate protective cardboard; this is a circumstance in which less is definitely not more.

With this issue resolved, you can look forward to your e-commerce business continuing to go from strength to strength, and your customers feeling nothing but delight when they receive their order.