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Ultimate Guide to Geotargeting in WordPress – Step by Step

Do you want to use Geotargeting in WordPress to enhance the customer experience?

Geotargeting allows website owners to show personalized content to users based on their geographic location. It helps improve user experience and conversion rates for businesses.

In this ultimate guide, we’ll show you how to use Geotargeting in WordPress to boost sales and customer satisfaction.

Using geotargeting in WordPress and WooCommerce

Why Use GeoTargeting in WordPress?

Geotargeting or Geo-Location targeting is a marketing technique that allows businesses to offer custom user experiences based on a customer’s geographic location.

You can use geotargeting to make your content, products, and website more relevant to the customer. Research shows that it helps build user interest, boosts engagement, results in higher conversions, and generate more sales.

A Google study found that 61% of smartphone owners prefer to buy from sites that customize information for their location.

For instance, a real estate website can use geotargeting to show specific real estate listings in a user’s region. Similarly, an online store can offer customers free shipping by detecting their geolocation first.

Having that said, now let’s take a look at some of the easiest ways to use geotargeting effectively in WordPress. Here is a quick overview of what we’ll cover in this guide.

Tracking User Geographic Locations in WordPress

Before you learn how to target users in different geographic locations, you need to gather the data about where your users are coming from.

The easiest way to track user’s geographic locations is by using MonsterInsights. It is the best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress and allows you to easily track website visitors.

MonsterInsights

First thing you need to do is install and activate the MonsterInsights plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, the plugin will automatically guide you to connect your WordPress website to your Google Analytics account. If you need help, then see our step-by-step guide on how to install Google Analytics in WordPress.

After that, you can view your website traffic reports by visiting the Insights » Reports page.

View countries report in MonsterInsights

It will show you a section of the top 10 countries, and you can view more data by clicking on the ‘View Countries Report’ button. This will take you to the Google Analytics website where you will see a full list of countries.

Google Analytics Geolocation report

You can click on each country to see how users from that country used your website, how many pages they viewed, how much time they spent, did they convert, and more.

You can then adjust your strategies to target regions that are not performing so well and find more ways to increase revenues from locations that are doing well.

Using Geotargeting in WordPress and WooCommerce with OptinMonster

The most common use of geotargeting is to show personalized content to your users based on their location.

This is where OptinMonster comes in.

It is the best conversion optimization software in the world because it helps you convert abandoning website visitors into customers and subscribers.

It also comes equipped with incredibly powerful display rules including geotargeting to show targeted messages on your website.

First, you’ll need to sign up for an OptinMonster account.

Note: You’ll need at least their Growth plan to access Goetargeting features.

OptinMonster

After signing up, switch to your WordPress website to install and activate the OptinMonster plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

This plugin acts as a connector between your WordPress website and your OptinMonster account.

Upon activation, you need to visit OptinMonster » Settings page and click on the ‘Connect existing account’ button.

Connect OptinMonster account to WordPress

This will bring up a popup where you can log in and connect your WordPress site to your OptinMonster account.

Now that your WordPress site is connected, you are ready to create your first geotargeted campaign. Go to the OptinMonster » Campaigns page and click on the ‘Add New’ button.

Create campaign

First, you’ll need to choose your campaign type. OptinMonster supports lightbox popups, floating bars, inline optins, fullscreen, slide-in, and gamified campaigns.

For the sake of this tutorial, we’ll choose a lightbox popup campaign. Below that, you can select a campaign template by clicking on it.

Select campaign type and template

Next, you need to enter a name for your campaign. You can enter any name here, and then click on the ‘Start building’ button.

Enter campaign name

This will launch OptinMonster’s campaign builder interface with a live preview of your campaign in the right panel.

Editing OptinMonster campaign

You can simply point and click on any item in the preview to edit, move, or delete it. You can also add new elements from the left column.

Let’s add some personalized geotargeted messaging to this campaign. To do that, we will be using an OptinMonster feature called Smart Tag.

Simply click on a text area or add a new text block and then in the text toolbar click on the Smart Tag button.

Detect and show user's location in OptinMonster using Smart Tag

It will show you a list of smart dynamic texts that you can add to your content.

We’ll add {{city}} smart tag to our campaign. This tag will automatically detect user’s city and display it in the campaign content.

Once you are finished editing your campaign, you can switch to the ‘Display Rules’ tab. This is where you can configure when to show your campaign.

Display rules to set up geotargeting campaigns

Next, you need to create a new Ruleset and use Physical location as the condition to check.

After that, you will be asked to select the criteria you want to match. For instance, we want to show this campaign if the visitors’ location is in Florida.

Display criteria for geotargeting

Click on the Validate button to make sure that your condition is setup correctly. After that, click on the Next Step button to continue.

Next, you’ll be asked which campaign view you want to show and if you want to use special effects.

Campaign display settings

Click on the Next Step button to continue and save your ruleset.

Now that everything is set up, you can switch to the Publish tab to make your campaign go to live. Simply switch to the ‘Publish Status’ from Draft to Publish by clicking on it.

Publish your geotargeting campaign in WordPress

Don’t forget to click on the Save changes button to save your campaign settings and then click on the close button to exit the builder.

After that, you’ll be redirected back to your WordPress site, where you can configure where and when you want to display the campaign.

Publishing your campaign in WordPress

Simply set the status from pending to published and click on the ‘Save Changes’ button to launch your campaign.

You can now visit your WordPress website in incognito mode to view your campaign. You’ll need to be in the location that you are targeting to view the campaign.

Geotargeted popup in WordPress showing a custom message

Note: If you are not located in that region, then you can check out a VPN service that has servers located in that region. This will allow you to mimic the location you want to target with your geotargeting campaigns.

Other Geotargeting Campaign Ideas for WordPress using OptinMonster

A header bar announcing free shipping with a countdown timer to trigger the FOMO effect.

A floating banner with countdown timer triggered by geo-location targeting

A slide-in message targeting local users to request a callback from your sales team.

A geo targeted slidein message

Here is an example of an inline campaign to help users discover content relevant to their location.

Inline campaign showing users locally relevant information

Using Geolocation Data in WordPress Forms

Forms help you generate leads, engage with customers and website visitors, and grow your business. Using geolocation data, you can learn more about your customers and offer them more local content.

For this, you’ll need WPForms. It is the best WordPress form builder plugin on the market and allows you to create any kind of form you need.

It also comes with a Geolocation addon that helps you collect users’ geolocation information with form submissions.

First, you need to install and activate the WPForms plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, you need to visit the WPForms » Settings page to enter your license key. You can find this information under your account on the WPForms website.

Enter WPForms license key

Next, you need to visit WPForms » Addons page. From here, you need to click on the ‘Install Addon’ button next to the GeoLocation Addon.

Geolocation addon

WPForms will now fetch, install, and activate the addon for you.

You can now go ahead and create your first form by visiting WPForms » Add New page. You’ll start by entering a name for your form and choose a template.

Creating a new form

A template is a starting point that you can use to quickly make forms. You can start with a blank form too, if you want.

Clicking on a template will launch the form builder interface. On the right, you’ll see pre-loaded form fields based on the template you choose. You can add new fields from the column on your left side.

Form builder

You can also just click on any field to edit it, drag and drop to move it, or delete any form field.

Once you are finished, don’t forget to click on the Save button to publish your form.

Your form is now ready. In order to collect Geolocation data, you need to add the form to your website.

WPForms makes it super easy to add your forms anywhere on your website. Simply edit the post or page where you want to add the form and click on the (+) add new block button.

Locate the WPForms block and add it to your post.

WPForms block

From block settings, simply select the form you created earlier. WPForms will load a live preview of your form in the content editor. You can now save your post or page and view your form in action.

Viewing Geolocation Data for Your Form Entries

After you have added the form to your website, wait for it to collect a few form entries or go ahead and add a few test entries on your own.

After that, you can go to WPForms » Entries page and click on your form name to view entries. On the Entries page, click on the View link next to any entry to view the details.

Viewing form entries in WPForms

On the entry details page, you will see a box with user’s Geographic location marked on the map.

Geolocation pointed on a map

Using Geolocation Data for Your WordPress Forms

Geolocation data can be used to grow your business. You can figure out which regions are showing more interest in your products, services, or website.

You can match this data with your Google Analytics reports to see which regions are not performing well. If your business serves a global audience, then you may consider offering forms in local languages.

Using GeoTargeting in WooCommerce

WooCommerce is the biggest eCommerce platform in the world that runs on top of WordPress. It comes with built-in geolocation feature that allows you to detect user’s location and use it to display taxes and shipping information.

For this section, we assume that you have already set up your online store. If you haven’t, then follow our guide on how to create an online store for step by step instructions.

After that, you need to visit WooCommerce » Settings page and scroll down to the ‘General Options’ section.

Geolocation settings in WooCommerce

From here you can select the countries or regions where you sell or ship to. You can also modify the ‘Default customer location’ option.

By default, WooCommerce assumes customer’s location to ‘no location’. You can change that to use your store address or use Geolocate to find the customer’s country.

Note: Geolocate feature will only lookup user’s country using their IP address and WooCommerce uses a third-party integration to fetch this information.

You can also use Geolocate with page cache support. The downside of choosing this is that your product URLs will show a v=XXXX string.

Don’t forget to click on the ‘Save Changes’ button to store your settings.

Next, you need to switch to the Integrations tab and you’ll see an option where you’ll be asked to provide a MaxMind API key.

MaxMind API key

This third-party service will lookup for GeoLocation information for your WooCommerce store.

Now, you need to sign up for a MaxMind free account. Once you have completed the sign up, go ahead and login to your account dashboard.

From here you need to click on Services » Manage License Keys menu. On the next page, click on the Generate New License Key button.

Generate license key

After that, simply copy the generated API key and paste it into your WooCommerce settings.

Don’t forget to click on the ‘Save Changes’ button to store your settings.

WooCommerce will now start using Geolocate data to calculate taxes and shipping costs. However, you’ll still need to configure shipping zones, shipping costs, and taxes.

We hope this article helped you learn how to use GeoTargeting in WordPress boost sales and improve user experience. You may also want to see our proven tips to increase website traffic, and our comparison of the best business phone services for small businesses.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The post Ultimate Guide to Geotargeting in WordPress – Step by Step appeared first on WPBeginner.

Source: WP Beginners

Press This Podcast: How WordPress is Helping People Get Back to Work with Jason Cooksey & Miles Sebesta

Welcome to Press This, the WordPress community podcast from WMR. Here host David Vogelpohl sits down with guests from around the community to talk about the biggest issues facing WordPress developers. The following is a transcription of the original recording.

David Vogelpohl: Hello everyone and welcome to Press This the WordPress community podcasts on WMR. This is your host, David Vogelpohl, I support the WordPress community through my role at WP Engine, and I love to bring the best of the community to you hear every week on press this as a reminder, you can find me on Twitter @wpdavidv, or you can subscribe to press this on iTunes, iHeartRadio, Spotify, or download the latest episodes at wmr.fm. This episode we’re gonna talk about how WordPress is helping people get back to work. We have a pandemic and the lockdown. And joining us for that conversation we have Jason Cooksey and Miles Sebesta of bitwise Jason welcome to Press This.

Jason Cooksey: How’s it going, thanks for having us.

DV: So glad to have you here, Miles welcome as well.

Miles Sebesta: Thank you. Thank you. Thanks for having us.

DV: Fantastic. Well, as I mentioned, we’re going to be talking about project a bit wise Industries has done around their project to bring onward ca online as part of the overarching onward, UW initiative, we’ll talk about all that here in a minute, really the point of all that is to help the millions of Americans workers displaced by COVID-19 back to work as quickly as possible. Jason and Miles and Bitwise industries helping out with the efforts there in California and using WordPress for that so I’m really interested to hear that project. I asked this question of every guest Jason and Miles and he made the short version because there’s two y’all. Tell me about your WordPress origin story what was the first time you used WordPress and Jason your first on my list, I’m just going to go with you.

JC: I first use WordPress back when it had wagon wheels for layout, actually my first WordPress experience was was pretty terrible. It took me a few years to fully understand and comprehend it. I don’t know, maybe I’m not a smart man, but it. It’s definitely grown and improved since the first first day I use it and it was, it was a client request that’s, that’s how quick it started

DV: client requests that’ll definitely get you into WordPress alright Miles you’re at briefly tell me your WordPress origin story.

MS: Yeah, I started using WordPress maybe about 10 years ago. So I had recently graduated college and started a company. And at that time, the company I was working for were no PHP, creating everything from scratch over and over again. Eventually we got a client that had a Joomla website, and my task was to edit it, and remember editing it and just thinking, Man, I’m not trying to throw any shade at Joomla, I just remember thinking, wow there’s got to be like a, an easier way to do this, and then also the same thing when it came to kind of programming, a product over and over again from scratch and just felt like that we were reinventing the wheel. So I eventually had another client come to the come to the company and they wanted WordPress. So we took a look at it and I instantly fell in love because it just sort of made sense to me were pages or pages and posts or posts. And I think that was around the time that custom posts might have been coming out, but it was just from then on WordPress has kind of been my jam when it comes to the library and just the community.

DV: So, I was gonna ask you about custom post types. You’re right. They came out in 2010 so if it was 10 years ago that would have been a little bit before I guess when that project landed on your door, but obviously a big moment in WordPress history is it became more of like a CMS if you will definitely remember days, running teams with everything hand coded so I share that transition. And I’m not sure which of us best to answer this question, but I was wondering if you could briefly tell me about bitwise industries like What do y’all do.

JC: The official response is we are a tech ecosystem. Really though we we just want to create jobs in the tech sector for folks who have traditionally been underrepresented folks and underdog cities are trying to make a place at the table for them and if we can’t do that, we’re stretching the table out ourselves.

DV: That’s awesome. That sounds like a wonderful mission, glad to hear that that’s what y’all are all about that’s that’s incredible and obviously very well fit for this project. So my next question like just to orient folks who talked a little bit about the project kind of getting on and your general mission, you just stated is to kind of get folks back to work, but what is onward, us, you’ve mentioned that kind of leading up to this and then what is its connection to onward ca like what is all that event.

MS: Yeah so honored us, is kind of the parent initiative where it’s a it’s a platform that we’ve created to get states online when it comes to having access for the individuals and citizens in that state, or the residents in that state, access to different types of needs when it comes to resources for example trying to find. Let’s say a shelter to stay the night app, or to find internships and opportunities to learn something new or applying for new jobs so the onboard us is kind of the umbrella. So we have onward ca onward ca.org. And that’s just one of the states, we have multiple states were using this same platform with kind of the same solution to provide resources to citizens and residents in those different states so onward us is kind of the umbrella organization and then we have on org main on word co on or, CA, just a list of states that were providing this resource to for the government county level.

DV: Gotcha. And for clarity like how we understand like the wise industries that company name we also have honored us like what’s the connection there the more organizations involved or me understand that connection.

MS: Yeah so, it was in Bitwise Industries. This is our initiative to create on our platform. And so really the developers from bitwise consulting are the ones that created the onward and onward initiative so it’s just sort of a parent, or bitwise is the parent brainchild I guess you can say when it comes to honored us and honored ca.

DV: Awesome, so did onward come to be in response to the pandemic or was that in the lockdowns or Was this something you had worked on prior.

JC: Yeah, when, when the pandemic was officially recognized, and the country went into shelter in place last year in March a huge part of the nation’s workforce just didn’t have a job any longer. And so it was a response to those workers displaced by the pandemic all over the country. They didn’t know where to start to get help and governments at the state and county level weren’t really fully prepared to provide those answers. So, this was a response to that needs to be brought all the resources of the state and counties had to offer help them organize it into kind of a one stop clearinghouse of information.

DV: Yeah I know a lot of people were scrambling when that hit in a lot of areas and restaurants by sake of example we’re scrambling to figure out how to operationalize there isn’t as in a digital first world you know online ordering curbside. And, you know, I mean, I guess I don’t have that direct experience per se but just seeing that from the employment and like state resources perspective for folks like super super super in need. I would imagine that was a big deal. Obviously as well. Why did you think WordPress was a good answer for these challenges.

MS: So for us, we knew that we needed to stand something up quickly. And we have a lot of really talented individuals and professionals when it comes to to WordPress, and then also we’re actually integrating with Salesforce, so this build that we have is talking to Salesforce, where we’re pulling the data. And really we just have had the luck, and, of having a team with some a plethora of experience in different in Salesforce and WordPress. In organization and design, and it just sort of felt right. It felt like this is something that we can spin up really quickly and we knew that the way we were going to do this is that we’re going to create an MVP. And we’re going to just iterate through it. So, really, from the concept to the first MVP version. It took us about two weeks, we had a two week period to get this thing off the ground, and that included, getting people and gathering people to do the basic content data entry. We had hundreds of people working on just gathering resources from these different states, let alone, building the platform. And for us, it just felt like a natural fit when it came to WordPress. Because we have just a lot of talent and experience using that and so it just, it just naturally felt in place that way.

DV: Yeah, that velocity is such a strength that WordPress, you know, being able to stand something up quickly the fact that you know and I know y’all had the talent in house. But there is, you know, there’s also the side of it we’re looking, there’s also a lot of people to hire and a lot of agencies to hire. And so, you know, it does provide the scent like super fast path for for folks in a pinch. I mentioned the restaurant scenario earlier had a friend that built the platform in a hurry to support in restaurants with WordPress, also at the start of the pandemic. It’s so interesting to see it being used in multiple use cases. I do want to dig a little bit more into like the build and the why and like how how the states use it and so on and so forth. We’re gonna take a quick break. We’ll be right back. Time to plug into a commercial break.

DV: everyone and welcome back to press this WordPress community podcast on w EMR. This is your host David Vogel Paul, I’m in the middle of my interview with Jason Cooksey and Myles avesta about their project onward us helping the folks in the US affected by the COVID-19 in the lockdown. Get back to work. Jason and miles before the break, we were talking a little bit about like why you decided to choose WordPress for this application you shared a little bit like look we have that we had the talent kind of a that was kind of part of your kind of focus already you had developers that were able to work within it, but it also allowed you like incredible velocity, said you got it done in a matter of weeks, how, like I mean I get with WordPress but like what was the, how did you execute that quickly. Jesus. Are you are you like like Tell me. Let me ask it a different way like did you did you spec it out on the go and then just kind of went like in a very very super agile way. Did you, did you were you going the other way very purposeful about what you were going to build into that helped you move quickly like helped me understand that

MS: I think for us. It was kind of built in a very agile way were, we had so many people just jumping in and doing what needed to be done. I think that one thing that really, we have to remember is that, when all this was happening, it was, we were in lockdown. I mean, the groceries where you could go to a grocery store and you couldn’t find anything, and there’s just a lot of pent up, energy, and fortunately for us. Our organization has just built a amazing culture and a bunch of people that say Yes we can, like we can do this. And it was a combination of really just having talent super talented designers, project managers Salesforce individuals just. Everyone who really has had their whole career, leading up to this moment. And it felt like at the time. We have to respond. There’s, there’s nothing else we can do and what we’re gonna do we can’t go out. We’re stuck in our house right so so really it was just for me I feel like the same amount velocity was is the feeling that the world around us is not right. It’s changing, and we have some talent, to be able to do this. So let’s do something about it. And everyone just kind of putting their heads down and and working as fast as they can, as hard as they can. I think it really was just, if we didn’t have the people already there and the culture already there, where everyone’s got each other’s back and our job is to help the world. We wouldn’t have been able to pull it off in the same amount of time that we did.

DV: Hey Jason What is your take on how you were able to do so quickly.

JC: Yeah, I just, you know, second what miles was saying, like we, we had already an amazing team of folks from marketing design project management, even data entry we hired, I think over 300 people, specifically for for scraping and just finding the information that we needed to provide to those folks that were in need. And then of course the development. And as Michael says the bitwise culture, put me in coach, made it happen so quickly and so successfully there were there were a lot of all nighters trying to stand this up and I should mention our coworker Brian Cadbury, he was actually the person that built the first draft of the site. And he did it in a way that was super smart, rather than using WordPress multi sites we’re actually using a custom post type and custom meta field options to set the design of each site instance. So we basically match the HTTP POST hosted determine and set the WP site URL, which allows us to launch domains way fast without having to reconfigure the site.

DV: what is specific advantages, you feel you’re getting with that approach versus multi site.

MS: For us, it’s really rather than having to duplicate a lot of work with the way we have it set up with the custom custom meta fields that we have it really boiled down to about 20 different options color options, where we’re pointing it text, and in everything else. And so with that, it just really simplifies it simplifies standing up a new site in a way that I think with a multi site. It is nice it is simple, but it was just, it wasn’t moving fast enough, it was again is like about that velocity that you were talking about. And so for us this is custom post type kind of integration that isn’t normally seen or normally used really was beneficial, and in allowing us to maintain that philosophy.

DV: What kind of entities would like warrant a new version of onward us to be sped up are the only states are you doing other kinds of new municipalities.

MS: Yes, so we’re actually currently working on and having another commercial instance of this. So, cities, counties, rather than from the state level anyone who needs a platform to be able to provide a lot of resources to an individual. So that’s definitely something that we’re working on. We’ve also been doing it for commercially for businesses. For example, if a business wants to create a jobs board, rather than using some other traditional or other method. They have the opportunity to create a jobs board where they can have people in other organizations lists jobs for example we have an organization that we’re working with that they wanted to create a, an internship platform, and they wanted it to be specifically for people and individuals who are minority, and they wanted one site that can have minority friendly internships being posted by companies that are really forward thinking and wanting to get more individuals into their organization. So it just depends on on what they’re wanting to do. It’s just a way to create a platform where if they want to list jobs if they want to list any sort of resources. We can do that.

DV: How do you explain what onward us does to your elderly relatives, give me this simple version.

JC: That’s a good question. I have had to do a number of times. I think it comes down to a it’s a collection of information. That wouldn’t normally be available. And in a one location like it is. We we work really hard and work with a lot of organizations to bring this information together in one place, and make it easy for the end user to find everything that they need if they’re if they’ve been affected by the pandemic. I guess the best thing I can do with that.

DV: And I think it’s so great you know when I, when I asked y’all earlier like what, you know, how’d you get it done so fast and I was expecting, only to hear like architectural or like workflow responses but you really kind of hit home that you know hey look you’re kind of built for this in a way but but also that purpose. It sounded like driving you to help others. And it kind of reminded me a little bit of the movie The Blind Side where Sandra Bullock’s character discovers how to get Michael or motivated with the kind of, you know, tie into that protective nature that he had Lisa they illustrated in the movie and it was like, as I heard you talk about like, we thought we had to do something and it reminded me a lot of that, that idea that you know folks are motivated often more to help others. Then perhaps to help themselves. So it’s really kind of interesting to hear you, you talk about that I was also surprised to hear you activated I think you said 300 people to help pull the resources together to make available for folks and I get that right.

JC: Yeah, yeah, I think that’s correct.

DV: Wow. Well that’s incredible. And to take action like that and not just posting on Facebook that’s it those affected by the pandemic. It’s really good to hear that in a material way and it’s really encouraging to hear you know how WordPress played a role in that. I have some more questions about this, but we’re gonna take a quick break and we’ll be right back.

DV: Everyone and welcome back to Press This the WordPress community podcasts on WMR This is your host David Vogelpohl, talking with Jason and Miles about the onward us platform. Essentially they built to help people find resources and employment. During the lockdown and the pandemic. Before the break. Jason was talking a little bit about how many people you’d activated and pulled together these resources for people in need. We talked a little bit about how you know that that kind of sense of purpose was what was driving you early on, especially, helping you get this out in a relatively short period of time. You mentioned to me I think you mentioned even earlier here that you had that you can pivot the onward platform from COVID response into, like, you kind of referenced it earlier as like a dynamic matching platform. And you kind of touched on that I felt a little bit, but maybe you could explain more about what you mean there and like how that might work.

MS: the integration between Salesforce and WordPress. And we have created this system in this platform that allows us to kind of use WordPress and connect and sail with Salesforce, and we’ve developed a middleware, essentially, where the Salesforce side we can do a really cool wizardry to find out how to match individuals based upon certain preferences. Let’s say if they’re looking for a job in a certain zip code or another instance that we have that is kind of same type of idea as the onward and onward matching system is this website that we have which is popped up now. So pot up now is built on sort of the same principles of connecting WordPress and Salesforce together, where families can go on there, they can put their preferences in the sense of like, how do they, how do they view the pandemic How do they, how did the their family currently respond to it. Are they okay with meeting outside. What type of like masks all sorts of just quality of life and how they live life. And based on those answers, they can find individuals and be matched with individuals that have the same idea so basically they can create a pod together to be able to write out this pandemic that we’ve been going through COVID-19. So, it’s really his platform, this dynamic matching system is a way for us to be able to pair. Individuals with any type of resource that they need.

DV: So like when I think of Salesforce and pardon my ignorance, but I imagine someone fills out a lead form it gets into a salespersons hand, they turn it from a lead to an opportunity and eventually close it so help me understand like how you’re using it in this, in the onward sensor just the kind of platform since like you’re just referencing like in terms of like individuals and preference matching and things like that.

MS: Yeah, so Salesforce is super robust and I know that’s a common misconception with Salesforce is that it only is for sales leads. Really, it’s matured in a way where it’s a giant database and a giant place to, to store lots of data. And we have access to really talented individuals that can come up with the data scheme that’s necessary for, for them to put in any type of information to build out a Salesforce classic Salesforce platform that just makes sense. And it’s, you can expand it beyond just. There’s a sales cut there there’s an opportunity coming in to sales. And then, you know, pose it out like you said, all sorts of REST API endpoints that you can point to just do some really interesting things. And it but it does take that sort of, you have to step back from it and you have to look at Salesforce as a different way as, as this is a place to put a data set, and it’s a place for us to be able to edit the data. And just rely on the individuals in the Salesforce side to to construct it that way.

DV: It’s gonna say you inherit the maintenance from Salesforce you inherit all the tools around it. It’s kind of basically your user profile system if you will. Why didn’t you use with it were those the reasons why you didn’t use more like the native WordPress user component,

MS: yeah for us we. When it comes to the data, and I guess your question is probably more so on the, on the user, are we are we talking about like on the Salesforce side you have a record with an individual who could have, you know, had that record live and WordPress.

DV: Was it the reasons I had mentioned around all the capabilities of Salesforce with identity metadata and things like that is that is that fundamentally why you chose to do it there versus say in WordPress itself.

MS: So we have the some of the user data that we have on these platforms do actually live in WordPress, but we’re using API calls to push that data into Salesforce as well so it’s kind of it’s it’s a bi synchronous sort of flux and it’s the best of both worlds.

DV: I love it. Well this has been very interesting. Thank you all so much for walking me through this very interesting project and I’m glad to hear you all are doing some good in the world, but thank you for joining today Jason,

JC: thanks for having us.

DV: Awesome, thank you too, Miles.

MS: Thank you so much.

DV: Awesome. If you’d like to learn more about what Jason and Miles are up to you can visit bitwiseindustries.com or check out, onwardus.org. Again, this has been your host David Vogelpohl I support the WordPress community through my role at WP Engine, and I love to bring the best of the community to you here every week on Press This.

The post Press This Podcast: How WordPress is Helping People Get Back to Work with Jason Cooksey & Miles Sebesta appeared first on Torque.

Source: Torquemag.io

Why WordPress Users Should Consider Headless

You’ve more than likely heard about Headless WordPress as this innovative new solution to a variety of common problems. It loads faster, is more secure, and it works with any web language or framework you can think of. But is Headless WordPress really all pros and no cons?

The setup is definitely unique in that it detaches the front and back end of your site. This allows you to pair it with all sorts of new and interesting technologies, or push CMS content to multiple different sources. And it does have a lot of other benefits, but that doesn’t mean it’s necessarily for everyone. Does it fit your needs?

To find out, here are the pros and cons of headless WordPress, laid out clearly so you can weigh them and decide whether making the big switch is worth it.

The Pros of Headless WordPress

Headless WordPress definitely has a lot to offer. There are a few things it’s very good at doing, and a few small advantages to just sweeten the deal.

Multichannel Publishing Made Easy

One of the main uses of Headless WordPress is for multichannel publishing. What this means is that you can post one thing and have it automatically go to other websites, apps, and social media accounts automatically.

icons of publishing multi-channel publishing channels

So how does it work? The way Headless WordPress functions is by detaching your front and back end. This means you’re free to create a website without the constraints of PHP. You can even have no website at all, just a hub of content management.

The way Headless WordPress connects to a front end website, app, or other tool is through the REST API. APIs allow you to interface with other applications in a way traditional WordPress can’t. This allows you to send content to other websites, social media, populate a mobile or web app with content, or even hook to an IoT device.

The possibilities are endless, and for big businesses looking for a more efficient way to automate content publishing, very exciting.

Work With Any Language

Much like how Headless WordPress uses its API to facilitate multichannel publishing, it can also use the API to connect to any front end. Properly configure it and it will work almost just like WordPress, but you can use any technology you want to build the front-facing part of your website.

headless wordpress pros and cons available technology

With traditional WordPress PHP, Javascript, HTML, and CSS are all the languages available to you. So what about all the interesting new web languages, frameworks, and technologies incompatible with PHP out there? They’re just out of reach. You can either use WordPress, or you can build a site based on those. Unless, of course, you set up headless WordPress.

With an API, anything is possible. While the functionality of the back end won’t be exactly like what you’re used to, you can still use the CMS to fill your site with articles and other content.

So you get to experiment with cool new languages, all while getting the best benefits of WordPress.

Better Performance

WordPress is a heavy CMS. There’s a lot of functionality packed in there, which is great when it comes to building websites, but it can also make loading times quite slow. Behind the scenes, it has to run through all the core files and tons of functions, which can take forever.

how wordpress works behind the scenes infographic

WordPress also mainly relies on PHP, which isn’t the fastest language out there (even if you update to the latest version). The dynamic language works well for crafting interesting, interactive websites, but processing all that code every time someone loads a webpage takes a while.

Headless WordPress strips all that away, loading only the necessary files through API calls. It’s so much more lightweight, and your site will load lightning fast.

This is only more true if you use headless WordPress to generate a static site. With users only needing to load simple HTML (no dynamic pieces like forms, forums, or the WordPress core files), your pages will appear almost instantly.

Fewer Security Holes

Using headless WordPress essentially provides a free extra layer of security. Basically, you’re setting up a hidden server that’s very hard to find.

Why is that? Headless WordPress only connects to your sites and apps through an API rather than having a login screen right there on the front end server. Consequently, hackers will have a much harder time brute forcing their way into your sensitive content. If they can even locate your content hub at all.

This also helps with DDoS attacks. When your front and back end are on different servers, DDoSing the source of the content is a lot harder. They may still be able to attack your front-facing site and overload it, but if you’re using multichannel publishing, all other platforms will remain untouched.

The more layers you have to your site, the better protected you are. It also helps that headless WordPress is a newer technology, so many hackers will not know how to deal with it.

Easier Redesigns and Better Scaling

The detached nature of headless WordPress also leads to a these benefits: easier redesigns and better scalability.

With traditional WordPress, if you want to redesign your site or scale it up with new resources, it will almost always lead to mandatory downtime as you upgrade your server or website.

website maintenance mode example
Image source: Under Construction

With headless, upgrading the back end resources only means you won’t be able to post new content. Your old content will remain up and accessible. On the other hand, if your website is down for upgrades, you can still keep working with your content in the back end.

As for redesigns, with traditional WordPress, it can get awkward. You’d need a separate cloned instance or a new staging site until your new look is ready. But you can’t just stop publishing blog posts while you work on your redesign. So once you’re done, you either need to move all that content over, or you’ll have to replace the theme files you changed on the original site.

It can turn into a mess. But if your content and visual design are separated, you won’t have this problem.

Even upgrading your entire website or app is easier. You could entirely change what platform or language your website runs on, and you won’t lose or have to migrate any of your content. All you’d have to do is connect the API to the new site.

The Cons of Headless WordPress

While Headless WordPress as a lot of pros, it certainly comes with cons, too. It’s a big step into uncharted territory for even experienced developers, let alone those lacking the necessary technical skills.

Requires Developer Experience

Headless WordPress is definitely not something a blogger with zero development knowledge should use. If you’re not either well experienced yourself or prepared to hire someone who is, you should skip over this trend for sure.

Setting up headless WordPress on its own already takes more work than the average user will be familiar with. And you’ll need to make your own, custom-built website; there’s no easy page builder plugin or theme options to help you do it.

Multichannel publishing itself requires fiddling with the API, and having a website or app to direct your content to in the first place. It’s not something you want to try without knowing anything about code.

ustwo.com architecture diagram
Example of a headless WordPress setup. Source: Human Made

And as for maintaining your headless site, it’s far more difficult than with a typical WordPress installation. Traditional WordPress can actually very well maintain itself within limits. It will often stay up and running on your server for months or years without any major problems (with the occasional bugs, of course). Plus, you can even configure it to automatically update itself and its components by now.

With headless, the story is very different. It’s a much more high-maintenance platform, possibly more so than even a typical website built from scratch. You’ll need to pay a developer for maintenance, and that means both a bigger initial investment and more expensive ongoing costs.

Slow Without Configuration

This one goes hand in hand with requiring developer experience: headless WordPress can actually be a detriment to your performance and security, at least without proper configuration.

The REST API can be quite slow — possibly even slower than just loading up a traditional WordPress site. This is fixable of course with caching and the use of SHORTINIT. But if you just set up the API without knowing how to optimize it, you could be far worse off.

Security is another concern. While headless WordPress does improve security and make you more resistant to DDoS attacks, it’s a double-edged sword. Loading in WordPress files manually over the API can give attackers open access to your site if not properly fortified.

WordPress Functionality Disabled

What ruins headless WordPress for many is just how much functionality you’re taking away along with the front end. While both the customizer and Gutenberg work to some extent, you’re losing access to the WYSIWYG editor and the live preview.

Basically, designing in the back end is no longer easy because in most of the interface, you can’t see what changes you’re making and how they’re affecting your site. For people using WordPress for its website building capabilities, that takes headless WordPress out of the running. While there are examples of websites using headless setups [insert link to headless examples in the wild before publishing] that have found ways around that, it takes custom solutions.

headless wordpress example beachbody on demand
Beachbody on Demand uses headless WordPress together with the Customizer.

There’s also the issue of plugins. A majority of them will no longer work at all — unless they affect only the back end. But your forms, your security and caching plugins, and your comments plugins won’t fall under that category.

All WordPress plugins rely on PHP, so if your front end website isn’t using that, they won’t be able to interface with it. That rules out almost every plugin in existence.

Who Should Use Headless WordPress?

In short: Who is headless WordPress best for, and who should stick with the traditional solution? Here are a few cases for going headless:

  • You’re part of a business looking for a robust CMS that supports multichannel publishing.
  • You’re a developer who wants to experiment with WordPress and other languages or frameworks.
  • You want to create an app and hook it to a CMS to populate it with content.
  • You’re interested in speeding up your website and improving security along with these other benefits.
  • You’re familiar with WordPress and want to keep using it, but are ready to branch out to other technologies.

If any of that describes you, headless WordPress might just be a fit. On the other hand, if you:

  • Have no web development experience
  • Are not familiar with headless CMSes at all
  • Are not prepared to deal with the extra configuration required to optimize security and performance
  • Want to make use of WordPress’ rich assortment of plugins and themes
  • Just want to run a simple blog or small business website with little need for multichannel publishing

…then traditional, non-headless WordPress is likely the best solution for you.

Headless WordPress Pros and Cons: Final Thoughts

Headless WordPress is starting to enter into the mainstream consciousness of most WordPress users and getting very popular as a result. But it’s definitely not the right solution for everyone — or even most people.

It does a few specific things very, very well. And if you want to experiment with revolutionary technology, it’s definitely the place to start. But for a majority of the small businesses and individuals that use WordPress, it’s ultimately not worth the setup time and learning curve.

But big businesses who need an effective multichannel solution that’s bundled with the best CMS on the market should definitely consider investing in headless WordPress. It may be too difficult to work with for many, but when it comes to multichannel publishing, that’s one thing it does very well.

If you are interested in headless, WP Engine recently announced, Atlas. Atlas takes over the technical aspect so you can focus on being creative and building something beautiful. It also comes paired with support, so you’ll have help any time of day.

What are your main pros and cons for using (or not using) headless WordPress? Let us know in the comments!

The post Why WordPress Users Should Consider Headless appeared first on Torque.

Source: Torquemag.io

Building Your Business Online: WP Engine Announces New eCommerce Solution for Small/Medium Businesses

AUSTIN, Texas — March 10, 2021 — WP Engine, the world’s most trusted WordPress technology company, today announced an exciting new eCommerce solution for small and medium businesses (SMB) looking to make the leap into online sales or make more money faster with their existing eCommerce business. WP Engine’s eCommerce Solution allows SMBs to create

How to Know if Your WordPress Website Uses Cookies

Do you want to know if your WordPress website uses cookies?

Cookies are tiny files used by websites to store temporary information in users’ browsers. Many countries have different cookie laws that require website owners to disclose which cookies they use and what information they track and store.

In this article, we will explain how to find out if your WordPress website uses cookies and how you can manage those cookies to comply with local laws.

How to see which cookies are set by your WordPress website

What are Cookies?

Cookies are small files containing data sent by a website to store in a user’s browser. Cookies play a significant role on the web and are widely used to improve user experience.

WordPress uses two types of cookies out of the box.

First, there are session cookies. These cookies are used to login and are set for all logged-in users on a WordPress website.

Then, there are comment cookies. These cookies are set when users leave a comment on your WordPress blog. Their purpose is to store user’s name, email address, and URL information so that they don’t have to re-enter it the next time they comment on your website.

Apart from WordPress, third-party plugins and tools may also set cookies for your WordPress website.

What are Cookie Laws?

Cookies are a powerful tool that can be used to track a lot of information about users. Considering the privacy risks, many countries and regions have enacted laws that set compliance guidelines for website owners.

For instance, European Union has GDPR Law and ePrivacy Directive. Similarly, countries like Canada, UK, Japan, and many more have laws that require website owners to get user consent and disclose the information they collect, store, and track about users.

That’s the reason why you see cookie popups on many different websites. These banners allow website owners to comply with GDPR, cookie laws, and other privacy laws in different countries.

How to See Which Cookies Are Stored by a WordPress Website

All modern web browsers make it easy to view the cookies set by any website you visit.

Google Chrome

In Google Chrome, first, you need to visit your WordPress website. After that, click on the Padlock or Not Secure icon in the browser’s address bar. This will open a menu where you need to click on ‘Cookies’.

Viewing stored cookies in Google Chrome

This will bring up the cookies popup where you will see all the cookies set by that particular website in your browser.

Cookies stored by a WordPress website

You can also view these cookies by using the Inspect tool. Simply visit your website and left-click anywhere to select the Inspect tool.

This will split your browser window and you’ll see the developer console panel. From here you need to switch to the ‘Application’ tab.

Viewing cookies using developer tools

Next, you need to click on the Cookies menu from the left column and you’ll be able to see all the cookies stored on your site. More importantly, you’ll be able to see the data stored by the cookie under the ‘Value’ column.

Mozilla Firefox

In Firefox, you need to visit the website you want to check and then right-click anywhere to select the ‘Inspect Element’ tool.

This will split the browser window and you’ll see the developer console panel. From here, you need to switch to the ‘Storage’ tab and click on ‘Cookies’ to view all the cookies.

Viewing cookies set by WordPress using Firefox

Plugins That Allow You to Turn Off Cookies

Now when reviewing cookies set by your WordPress website, you may notice that there are some cookies set by different WordPress plugins you are using.

As a website owner, you may not want to use these cookies to comply with cookie laws in different countries and limit your liabilities.

However, not all WordPress plugins come with easy ways to turn off cookies and make your website compliant. Following are some of the plugins that allow you to easily turn off cookies without breaking plugin functionality.

1. MonsterInsights

MonsterInsights is the best Google Analytics plugin on the market. It allows you to properly install Google Analytics and setup EU compliance addon.

First, you need to install and activate the MonsterInsights plugin. For more help, see our article on how to install Google Analytics in WordPress.

Once you have set up the plugin, go to Insights » Addons page and install EU Compliance addon.

EU Compliance addon for MonsterInsights

The addon works out of the box, and there are no settings for you to configure. You can see it’s enabled by visiting Insights » Settings page and switching to the Engagement tab.

EU Compliance addon status

The addon will now automatically anonymizes IP addresses, disable the Demographics and Interests Reports, turn off user and author tracking, and more. It also integrates with Cookie Notice and CookieBot plugins automatically.

2. WPForms

WPForms is the best WordPress contact form plugin on the market. It allows you to easily create GDPR compliant forms for your WordPress website.

First, you need to install and activate the WPForms plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, you need to visit WPForms » Settings page and switch to the General tab.

WPForms settings

From here you need to scroll down to the GDPR section and check the box next to GDPR enhancements option.

WPForms GDPR settings

Checking the option will expand it and you’ll see the option to disable user cookies and user details for all forms.

WPForms also allows you to make individual forms GDPR compliant. For more details, see our article on how to create GDPR compliant forms in WordPress.

3. OptinMonster

OptinMonster is the best lead generation software on the market. It helps you create GDPR compliant optin forms and lead campaigns for your website.

It allows you to easily add a Privacy Policy with a customizable checkbox. Users can then only submit the form once they’ve checked the box. It also allows you to enable double optin for your forms.

Adding privacy policy checkbox to OptinMonster campaigns

Plus, OptinMonster lets you target visitors based on their location. That way, you can make sure you’re showing GDPR-compliant optins to customers in EU countries. OptinMonster only creates cookies to improve user experience on your website and these cookies can only be utilized for on-site tracking.

4. Smash Balloon

Smash Balloon is the best social media plugin for WordPress websites. It allows you to create social media feeds that are compliant with cookie and GDPR laws.

Smash Balloon GDPR compliance

The plugin detects if you have a cookie notification plugin enabled and then holds any cookies until user give cookie consent.

More Ways to Comply with Cookie Laws for WordPress Websites

It is the responsibility of a website owner to comply with cookie laws in different regions. Here are some basic steps to make your website more compliant.

1. Add a Privacy Policy Page

A privacy policy page is legally required to comply with privacy and cookie laws in different regions. See our guide on how to easily add a privacy policy page to your WordPress website.

2. Install a Cookie Notification Plugin

Cookie notification plugins show a notification on your website that it uses cookies and seek consent from the users.

Cookie Notice and CookieBot are two of the most popular cookie notification plugins that are compatible with many other popular WordPress plugins.

For more options, see our list of the best WordPress GDPR plugins to improve compliance.

3. Keep an Eye on Plugins and Tools that Use Cookies

Check your website cookies to make sure that you can connect each cookie to a installed plugin and tool on your website. When installing new WordPress plugins or third-party tools, make sure to check if they have options to make them GDPR and cookie law compliant.

We hope this article helped you learn how to check if your WordPress website uses cookies and ways to make your website compliant with cookie laws.

You may also want to see our WordPress security guide to make sure that any data that you collect on your website is properly secured.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The post How to Know if Your WordPress Website Uses Cookies appeared first on WPBeginner.

Source: WP Beginners

10 Best Website to Get Free Photos for your WordPress Blog

You decided to make your very first WordPress blog. Now what? Most experts suggest using photos in blog posts to make them more attractive to readers. It increases credibility and authority, and overall interaction with your content. A powerful image zaps right into your readers’ minds’ first bits and obtains them in the mood you […]

Read More…

The post 10 Best Website to Get Free Photos for your WordPress Blog appeared first on Learn WordPress with WPLift.

WordPress 5.7 “Esperanza”

WordPress 5.7 “Esperanza”

Bringing you fresh colors in the admin, simpler interactions in the editor, and controls right where you need them, WordPress 5.7 lets you focus on the content you create.

Meet “Esperanza”, the first WordPress release of 2021. “Esperanza” is named in honor of Esperanza Spalding, a modern musical prodigy. Her path as a musician is varied and inspiring—learn more about her and give her music a listen!

With this new version, WordPress brings you fresh colors. The editor helps you work in a few places you couldn’t before without getting into code or hiring a pro. The controls you use most are right where you need them. Layout changes that should be simple, are even simpler to make.

Now the new editor is easier to use

Font-size adjustment in more places: now, font-size controls are right where you need them in the List and Code blocks. No more trekking to another screen to make that single change!

Reusable blocks: several enhancements make reusable blocks more stable and easier to use. And now they save automatically with the post when you click the Update button.

Inserter drag-and-drop: drag blocks and block patterns from the inserter right into your post.

You can do more without writing custom code

Full-height alignment: have you ever wanted to make a block, like the Cover block, fill the whole window? Now you can.

Buttons block: now you can choose a vertical or a horizontal layout. And you can set the width of a button to a preset percentage.

Social Icons block: now you can change the size of the icons.

A simpler default color palette

This new streamlined color palette collapses all the colors that used to be in the WordPress source code down to seven core colors and a range of 56 shades that meet the WCAG 2.0 AA recommended contrast ratio against white or black.

Find the new palette in the default WordPress Dashboard color scheme, and use it when you’re building themes, plugins, or any other components. For all the details, check out the Color Palette dev note.

From HTTP to HTTPS in a single click

Starting now, switching a site from HTTP to HTTPS is a one-click move. WordPress will automatically update database URLs when you make the switch. No more hunting and guessing!

New Robots API

The new Robots API lets you include the filter directives in the robots meta tag, and the API includes the max-image-preview: large directive by default. That means search engines can show bigger image previews, which can boost your traffic (unless the site is marked not-public).

Lazy-load your iFrames

Now it’s simple to let iframes lazy-load. By default, WordPress will add a loading="lazy" attribute to iframe tags when both width and height are specified.

Ongoing cleanup after update to jQuery 3.5.1

For years jQuery helped make things move on the screen in ways the basic tools couldn’t—but that keeps changing, and so does jQuery.

In 5.7, jQuery gets more focused and less intrusive, with fewer messages in the console.

Check the Field Guide for more!

Check out the latest version of the WordPress Field Guide. It highlights developer notes for each change you may want to be aware of. WordPress 5.7 Field Guide.

The Squad

The WordPress 5.7 release comes to you from a small and experienced release squad:  

This release is the reflection of the hard work of 481 generous volunteer contributors. Collaboration occurred on nearly 250 tickets on Trac and over 950 pull requests on GitHub.

7studio, aaribaud, Aaron Brazell, Aaron D. Campbell, Aaron Jorbin, aaronrobertshaw, abagtcs, acerempel, activecoder, ad7six, Adam Bosco, Adam Silverstein, adamboro, Addison Stavlo, Ahmad Awais, Ahmed Saeed, Albert Juhé Lluveras, albertomake, Alex Lende, Alex Woollam, alex27, Alexander Lueken, alexstine, allancole, Allen Snook, almendron, Amanda Riu, ambienthack, Amol Vhankalas, Andrea Fercia, Andrei Draganescu, Andrew Duthie, Andrew Nacin, Andrew Nevins, Andrew Ozz, Andrew Serong, André Maneiro, Andy Fragen, Andy Peatling, Ankit Panchal, Anne McCarthy, Anthony Burchell, Anton Lukin, Anton Timmermans, Anyssa Ferreira, archon810, Ari Stathopoulos, Arslan Ahmed, Artur Piszek, Aurélien Denis, Ayesh Karunaratne, bartosz777, basscan, bduclos, becdetat, Bego Mario Garde, Ben Dwyer, Bernhard Reiter, Bernhard Reiter, bhanusinghkre, Birgir Erlendsson (birgire), Birgit Pauli-Haack, bobbingwide, bonniebeeman, Boone Gorges, Boy Witthaya, Brandon Kraft, Brent Swisher, brijeshb42, burnuser, Caleb Burks, Cameron Voell, Carike, carloscastilloadhoc, carlosgprim, Carolina Nymark, celendesign, Cenay Nailor, ceyhun0, chexwarrior, Chip Snyder, Chloé Bringmann, Chouby, Chris Van Patten, Christian Sabo, Christina Workman, Christopher Finke, clayray, Clayton Collie, Code Amp, Collins Agbonghama, Copons, Corey, cristinasoponar, Damian Nowak, Dan Farrow, Daniel Richards, Daniele Scasciafratte, Danny van Kooten, Daria, Darren Ethier (nerrad), Dave Whitley, David Anderson, David Baumwald, David Calhoun, David Herrera, David Page, david.binda, dbtedg, dd32, Debabrata Karfa, dekervit, Denis Yanchevskiy, denishua, Diane Co, Dilip Bheda, Dominik Schilling, donmhico, dratwas, Drew Jaynes, Dávid Szabó, e_baker, Ebonie Butler, Edi Amin, Ella van Durpe, Ella van Durpe, Elliott Richmond, Enej Bajgorić, Enrico Carraro, epicfaace, epiqueras, Eric Andrew Lewis, Eric Binnion, Eric Mann, Erik Betshammar, Erin ‘Folletto’ Casali, Estela Rueda, etoledom, eventualo, Fabian Kägy, Felipe Elia, Felix Arntz, Florian TIAR, Florian Ziegler, floriswt, Francesca Marano, Frank Klein, fullofcaffeine, Gan Eng Chin, Garrett Hyder, Gary Pendergast, GeekPress, geekzebre, Geoff Guillain, George Stephanis, geriux, gKibria, glendaviesnz, gmariani405, Gord, greatsaltlake, Greg Ziółkowski, grzim, gumacahin, gunnard, Gustavo Bordoni, Hans-Christiaan Braun, Hardeep Asrani, Hareesh, hauvong, Haz, Helen Hou-Sandi, helmutwalker, Hemant Tejwani, Herre Groen, hirasso, hmabpera, Howdy_McGee, hsingyuc7, Ian Dunn, ianmjones, ibiza69, Igor Radovanov, ingereck, iprg, Ipstenu (Mika Epstein), Isabel Brison, Ismail El Korchi, iviweb, J.D. Grimes, jadeddragoon, Jake Spurlock, jakeparis, jakub.tyrcha, James Golovich, James Huff, James Koster, James Nylen, James Rosado, Jan Thiel, Jason Adams, Jason LeMahieu (MadtownLems), Jason Ryan, Jayman Pandya, Jean-Baptiste Audras, Jeff Chandler, Jeff Farthing, Jeff Paul, Jennifer M. Dodd, Jenny Dupuy, Jeremy Felt, Jeremy Yip, Jeroen Rotty, Jessica Duarte, Jessica Lyschik, joanrho, Joe Dolson, Joe McGill, joelclimbsthings, Joen Asmussen, Johannes Kinast, John Blackbourn, John James Jacoby, John Watkins, Jon Surrell, Jonathan Champ, Jonathan Desrosiers, Jonathan Stegall, Jonny Harris, Jono Alderson, Joost de Valk, jordesign, Jorge Costa, José Miguel, Jose Luis, Joseph Karr O'Connor, Josepha Haden, joshuatf, JoshuaWold, JOTAKI, Taisuke, Joy, JS Morisset, jsnajdr, Juliette Reinders Folmer, Julio Potier, Justin Ahinon, Justin Sainton, Justin Sternberg, kafleg, Kai Hao, Kailey (trepmal), Kalpesh Akabari, kara.mcnair, Karolina Vyskocilova, Kelly Choyce-Dwan, Kerry Liu, kimdcottrell, Kiril Zhelyazkov, Kirsty Burgoine, Kite, Kjell Reigstad, Knut Sparhell, Konrad Chmielewski, Konstantin Obenland, Konstantinos Xenos, Kurt Payne, Kyle B. Johnson, Lara Schenck, laurelfulford, Laxman Prajapati, leogermani, Levdbas, Lihä, litemotiv, lovor, lucasbustamante, Luigi Cavalieri, Lukas Pawlik, Luke Carbis, Luke Cavanagh, Luke Walczak, magnuswebdesign, Mahafuz, Mahdi Akrami, malinajirka, mallorydxw, mallorydxw-old, Manzoor Wani, Manzur Ahammed, marcelo2605, Marcio Zebedeu, Marcus, Marcus Kazmierczak, Marie Comet, Marijn Koopman, Marin Atanasov, Marius Jensen, Mark D Wolinski, Mark Howells-Mead, Mark Robson, Mark Uraine, Marko Andrijasevic, Markus, Mary Baum, Mathieu Berard Smartfire, Mathieu Viet, Matias Ventura, Matt Chowning, Matt Mullenweg, Matt Wiebe, Maxime Pertici, Mayank Majeji, mdrockwell, Meg Phillips, megabyterose, Meher Bala, Mehrshad Darzi, Mehul Kaklotar, Mel Choyce-Dwan, mendezcode, mgol, Michael Arestad, Michael Babker, Miguel Fonseca, Miina Sikk, Mike Schroder, Milan Dinić, Milana Cap, mirka, Mohamed El Amine DADDOU, Monika, Monika Rao, morenaf, mrjoeldean, Mukesh Panchal, munyagu, mzorz, Naveen, net, nicky, Nico, Nico Martin, Nicola Laserra, Nicolas Juen, NicolasKulka, Nik Tsekouras, Noah Allen, nwjames, oakesjosh, Olga Gleckler, ovidiul, oxyc, Paal Joachim Romdahl, Pascal Birchler, Paul Bearne, Paul Biron, Paul Bunkham, Paul Schreiber, Paul Von Schrottky, pawki07, pbking, Pedro Mendonça, Pete Nelson, Peter Smits, Peter Wilson, Pinkal Devani, Piotrek Boniu, Prem Tiwari, presstoke, prettyboymp, Prince, pypwalters, Q, r-a-y, Rafael Galani, rafhun, Rami Yushuvaev, Ramon Ahnert, ratneshk, Ravi Vaghela, ravipatel, retrofox, Reza Ardestani, Riad Benguella, Rian Rietveld, Richard Tape, Robert Anderson, Rodrigo Primo, roger995, Rolf Siebers, Romain, Ronnie Burt, Ross Wintle, Ryan Boren, Sébastien SERRE, Sören Wrede, Saša, Sanket Chodavadiya, Sarah Ricker, sarayourfriend, Scott Taylor, Sebastian Pisula, SeBsZ, Sergey Biryukov, Sergey Yakimov, sergiomdgomes, Shahin Sid, shaunandrews, Shital Marakana, Slava Abakumov, snapfractalpop, souri_wpaustria, Stefano Minoia, Stefanos Togoulidis, Stephen Bernhardt, Stephen Edgar, Steven Word, Subrata Sarkar, Sunny, t-p, Takashi Kitajima, Tami, Tammie Lister, Tanvirul Haque, Tapan, TeamDNK, TeBenachi, Thierry Muller, thorlentz, Tim Hengeveld, Tim Nolte, Timi Wahalahti, Timothy Jacobs, tinodidriksen, Tkama, tmatsuur, Tobias Zimpel, tobifjellner (Tor-Bjorn Fjellner), Toni Viemerö, Tony A, Tonya Mork, tonysandwich, Torsten Landsiedel, Toru Miki, transl8or, Tyler Tork, Ulrich, Umang Vaghela, vandestouwe, vcanales, Vipul Chandel, Vlad T., webcommsat AbhaNonStopNewsUK, WebMan Design | Oliver Juhas, Wendy Chen, wesselvandenberg, Weston Ruter, Willis Allstead, worldedu, WP OnlineSupport, Xristopher Anderton, Yann Kozon, Yoav Farhi, yscik, Yui, yuliyan, Zebulan Stanphill, and zieladam.

Code is poetry.

Source: WordPress.org

How to Create a WordPress Image Map (And Why You Should)

When it comes to websites, it may be true that a picture is worth a thousand words. These days, many online consumers prefer visual content to large amounts of text. Eye-catching, interactive image maps can be a useful and engaging addition to your website.

The good news is that you don’t have to be an expert web designer to create helpful, interactive visual elements. With a plugin such as WP Draw Attention and a few simple steps, you can be well on your way to crafting an impressive image map.

In this post, we’ll give you an introduction to image maps and how you might be able to use them on your website. Then we’ll walk you through how to add this feature to your WordPress site with WP Draw Attention. Let’s go!

An Introduction to Image Maps

An image map is a photo or graphic containing clickable areas. You can use them to add interactive visual elements to your website. You’ve likely encountered image maps at some point while browsing the web, as they’re a versatile tool.

One widespread use for image maps is giving users a closer look at a building or property. For example, the Clinical Simulation Center of Las Vegas provides site visitors with an interactive floorplan of its facility:

An interactive floor plan.

Another example is Voltcave, which highlights exceptional gaming setups. Clicking on the individual components opens new windows where users can purchase the items shown in the photo:

A Voltcave product breakdown.

Image maps lend themselves well to breaking down complicated processes. Corporate Settlement Solutions illustrates the home closing journey with an interactive and informative diagram:

An image map.

You can use image maps to teach difficult concepts easily, highlight product features, or lead a virtual tour of a property. No matter what you use your website for, you can probably dream up a few fun ways to include an image map.

How to Create a WordPress Image Map (In 7 Steps)

Now that you’ve seen how some organizations use image maps on their websites, we’ll show you how to make one of your own.

Step 1: Download and Install WP Draw Attention

The WP Draw Attention plugin enables you to add an image map to your WordPress site easily. Image maps you create with this tool are responsive, Search Engine Optimization (SEO)-friendly, and customizable.

We’ll show you the free version of the plugin, but if you upgrade to premium, you’ll unlock even more options. To install it from your admin dashboard, navigate to Plugins > Add New. Then, search for “Draw Attention” and click on the Install Now button:

The Draw Attention plugin.

Once you’ve finished installing the plugin, click on the Activate button. This should bring you to the Edit Image screen.

Step 2: Select an Image for Your Map’s Base

The first step in actually creating your image map is to add the photo or graphic that you’ll use as its base. If you’re not already on the Edit Image screen, you can get there by clicking on Draw Attention in the menu on the left side of your WordPress dashboard:

Editing an image.

First, give your image a descriptive title. This title will be visible to your site’s visitors, so make it clear and descriptive. Then look to the Image area on the right of the screen:

Uploading a new image.

If you have your image file stored on your desktop, you can simply drag and drop it into the Image area. Alternatively, you can click on the Upload Image button, locate the file on your computer, and upload it.

If your image is already in your WordPress Media Library, click on the Media Library button. Then, locate and select the desired picture and click on the Set Featured Image button:

Setting a featured image.

If you change your mind about which image you want to use, you can always hover over the Image area, click on the Remove Image button, and select a new file.

Step 3: Draw an Image Hotspot

The next step is to designate a ‘hotspot’ on your image. This is an area that users can click on and interact with. When a visitor hovers over a hotspot, a highlight will appear to show that it can be clicked.

You’ll create and define actions for your hotspots in the Hotspot Areas section. You can find it toward the bottom of the screen:

The Hotspot Areas section.

First, click on the Clickable Area #1 dropdown to open your image. If it’s large, you may have to scroll to see the entire picture. Click anywhere on your image to place your first point.

You can move a point around by clicking on it and then dragging it. When you add a second point, a line will appear connecting the two. The more points you add, the more precise you can make your shape. Continue adding and manipulating points around the perimeter of your clickable area until you’re satisfied with the coverage:

Manipulating points around the clickable area.

If you need to remove a point, you can do so by right-clicking on it. You can also move the entire clickable shape by selecting the center point and dragging it.

Finally, give your hotspot a title. This title will display when a user hovers over the hotspot, so you’ll want to make it contextually relevant.

To add more hotspots, simply click on the Add Another Area button at the bottom of the screen. Once you’ve added more than one, you can use the Remove Area button to delete any unneeded hotspots.

Step 4: Set Your Hotspot’s Action

Now you can set the action for your hotspot. Draw Attention provides you with the option to either show more information about the image or to open a URL in a new tab. You can find both of these options in the Action section:

The Show More Info option.

To provide your users with more information, select Show More Info from the dropdown menu. Type your desired text into the Description field. If you’d like to display an additional image, you can upload it in the Detail Image section:

The Detail Image section.

You can repeat these steps for any other hotspots you create. When a user clicks on the hotspot, they will see the corresponding text and image:

The corresponding text and image.

If you’d like your hotspot to open a new URL when clicked, select Go to URL from the dropdown menu. Next, type the desired web address into the URL field. You can also check the Open in New Window box if you’d prefer to open the page in a different browser tab:

Opening in a new window.

Be sure to click on the Update button in the Publish box to save your image map whenever you make changes to it.

Step 5: Adjust Your Image Map Settings

Next, you can adjust some of your image map’s color settings. By manipulating these options, you can ensure that your image map elements match your website’s branding. You’ll find these options in the More Info Box Styling area:

The More Info Box Styling area.

If your image is on the small side, the plugin will place it on a colored background. You can change this color to match the rest of your website by clicking on the Select Color button:

Setting an image background color.

You can also adjust the colors used in the More Info box. Select your desired colors for the box’s background and text by clicking on the Select Color buttons for each option. When choosing colors, keep accessibility in mind and ensure there’s enough contrast to keep the text legible.

To help your site’s visitors understand that your image is interactive, you may want to add text to display in the More Info box when no clickable area is selected. Enter this content in the Default More Info box:

An example of an image map.

You can use this text to provide more information about your image map or encourage users to interact with it.

Step 6: Add Color to Your Hotspots

Finally, you can customize the styling of your hotspots. You can make these adjustments in the Highlight Styling section. Similar to how you selected colors for your info box, you can select what color you’d like your hotspots’ highlights to be. You can adjust the highlight’s opacity using the slider as well:

Adjusting the highlighter's opacity.

Next, you can adjust the highlight’s border. Again, you can choose the color and opacity. You can also increase or decrease the border’s thickness:

Adjusting the border settings.

If you would prefer your highlight not to have a border, simply set the Border Opacity to zero. Save your changes by clicking on the Update button.

Step 7: Insert Your Image Map on Any Post or Page Using a Shortcode

Once you’re happy with your image map, you can display it on any post or page on your WordPress site using the [drawattention] shortcode.

If you upgrade to the premium version of WP Draw Attention, then you can create multiple image maps. In this case, each of them will be assigned its own shortcode, which you can add to your content as you see fit.

Conclusion

A WordPress image map can be an appealing way to communicate with your site’s visitors. Whether you want to show off a product’s key features or just present information in a visual manner, an image map may be the best tool for the job.

Using the WP Draw Attention plugin can help you get started quickly. After you install and activate it, you’ll gain access to a user-friendly image map editor where you can draw your image hotspots and customize the styling for the various elements. To publish your image map, just add the corresponding shortcode to any post or page.

What are you planning to use your image map for? Share with us in the comments section below!

The post How to Create a WordPress Image Map (And Why You Should) appeared first on Torque.

Source: Torquemag.io