Help, My Blog Posts Have Disappeared!

Have you suddenly discovered that your posts and pages have all disappeared? Your blog theme/template is still there but it’s saying no posts found?

This has happened to four clients in the last week, three on Hostgator and one on another. I know Hostgator are gradually upgrading all their servers and I’ve no idea if this is the cause but wouldn’t be surprised.

The reason (in these cases) has been a crashed wp_posts database table. The error message given (if you get one at all in your theme or admin menu) is often: “wp_posts is marked as crashed and should be repaired”. To fix is pretty simple. Login to your host’s control panel and go to the phpMyAdmin option. This brings up a list of your databases. Select the one you’re using for WordPress to see the WordPress tables in that database. A list like this will appear (the actual number and name of some tables will vary depending on the plugins used):

Corrupted table

(Click to enlarge)

You can see the problem here, wp_posts is labeled as “in use” and is locked. To repair, simply check the box next to wp_posts and select Repair table, as in the image below.



(Click to enlarge)

You should then get a success message and your posts will have reappeared. If not then you may have a bigger problem, but at least you have a recent backup. Right?!

How To Podcast On Your Blog

I’ve had quite a few clients ask me about podcasting, and how they can do it for their blog. I believe in getting the experts in when appropriate, and Mwangi is a podcasting expert. I’ll let him introduce himself.

Hi everyone, my name is Mwangi and I share the title of “Blog Mastermind Mentor” with Joel.

Now, I know many of you are probably wondering about this technology of podcasting. Is it worth your time? Will it produce the desired results and so on and so forth.

Below I have answered many of the most common questions asked about this wonderful technology. I am sure some of the answers will surprise you, and I hope all of them will assist you.

Before you get to them though, I just thought I would let you know that my ideas on podcasting did not develop in some abstract volume. They are based on close to a year of getting my hands dirty with the technology and six interviews conducted with people who stand upon the top of the podcast mountain of stars.

So what you are reading below is the culmination of many many years of experience and investigation. Without any futher ado, I thank Joel, and wish you nothing but podcasting succcess.

My Podcasting Tutor

What actually is podcasting?

Podcasting has many definitions, and when I was doing research on what the definition is, I found a number of variations.

I like to use Yaro Starak’s definition, which is:

“A podcast is an audio file distributed by an RSS feed.”

On My Podcasting Tutor we pretty much define it as:

“A podcast is a series of audio or video presentations syndicated on the internet in digital format that is designed to be subscribed to and played on-demand using a PC or portable media player.”

Why would you recommend starting a podcast? What are the benefits?

I think the first thing that is always important to emphasize is that podcasting, just like blogging is just a communication channel.

Ultimately, what matters more in my opinion is the message you want to distribute via this channel.

That having been said, podcasting has a number of intrinsic advantages that other communication mediums don’t. Please note, I am lumping podcasting together with video blogging:

Number one is building relationships. There is no other way I have seen of building relationships with A players in your niche that works quite like podcasting or video blogging.

If your niche has about 30 A-list players in it, if you ask all 30 for an interview, and you have some substance of some sort backing you up -meaning when people look at what you’ve done they can tell you are either a star or an up an coming star or at least someone who is putting in the work – at the very least one of them should say yes and the instant credibility this can give you is huge.

I can honestly say I have networked with Gary Vaynerchuk, Steve Pavlina and Paul Colligan and its all because of the wonderful opportunities brought about by podcasting.

What niche(s) are best for podcasting?

To break it down to its simplest essence,the best niches for podcasting are the ones that fulfill two criteria:
* Have a significant audience
* Have commercial potential

The way to discover these two things is quite simple actually.

If you want to know if your niche has a sizeable audience, brainstorm as many of the common terms in a niche as possible and just go exploring up and down the web.
Are people assembling at forums to discuss the topic? Are there other podcasts or blogs in the niche? Is there any form of Internet life in that niche?

To find out if there is commercial potential, as you do Google research, look to the right of the screen to see if there are any adwords ads that pertain to your niche.

Go to Clickbank, Commission Junction and the other big players in the affiliate market and look to see if there are any people spending money to get to your niche.

If you tick both boxes, then the conditions are great for you to get in and give it your best shot.

And the old expression, “You never know,”, holds true. You truly never know until you select a niche and work it for a few months.

What equipment and technical expertise are required?

Not much really, if you know how to use a computer, download and install software, you should be able to get podcasting within a day if you wish.

If people join my free email list at mypodcastingtutor.com, I have a video tutorial where I show people how to setup only 3 tools and they can immediately get podcasting.

Though I wouldn’t recommend it, because you wouldn’t own the podcast, if you want you can head on over to a place like Blogtalk radio and get started even before you finish reading this.

How do I get this on my blog?

When I first got started, I made heavy use of the podpress plugin and later on less use of the audio player plugin.

Anyone who podcasts on WordPress would pretty much know those two plugins.

Now, podpress, which is what I still use to this day to podcast, hasn’t been updated for months, but that didn’t stop the podpress community from coming up with solutions to incompatibilities that existed between podpress and the latest version of WP.

So I’d probably put my money on podpress, it makes adding your podcast to itunes easier and the community is awesome.

NB: I am yet to update to the latest version of WP, as I haven’t really had the need to, so definitely check in with the discussion surrounding your plugin and the latest version of WordPress prior to installing it or make use of nice folks like you and you’ll never go wrong

How do I add a podcast to iTunes?

Rather than tell you why not show you:

If you can’t see the image, click here to watch the video.

A very common question now, what do I talk about?!?

My recommendation would be to pick an area, that seems viable that I am PASSIONATE ABOUT.

Not just passionate about the end results, but something I am passionate about engaging in and being a part of on a regular basis.

If you select an area like that, you are able to bring a level of creativity and insight that only comes from unforced, deeply engaging participation and investigation of a niche or idea or whatever.

I’d recommend you get on the mic and just go into the flow.

If you are scared of offending people, good. Steve Pavlina and Timothy Ferriss both say that one of the keys to their success is the fact that they have a polarizing effect.

If you just want to be a helpful source of information, good, AJ and Jordan Harbinger from Pickup Podcast got a nationally syndicated radio show by committing to helping men understand dating once every week.

Get out there, give it your best shot, and see what results the word throws your way.

And, to shamelessly plug myself, you want to learn what 6 A-list podcasters did that led to their success, so you have folks you can model, check out my Conversations with Podcasting Gurus package or just watch my free Podcasting Profits Manifesto which is basically a free video presentation where I pulled all their insights together with my experience and knowledge into the one presentation.

Great, thanks Mwangi!

If you have any further questions, please let me know.

WordPress.tv Videos Will Help You!

Ever wanted to know how to do something basic in WordPress? Now WordPress.tv can help you out.

Made by the makers of WordPress (Automattic), WordPress.tv contains videos on writing and publishing posts, adding a static page, and many more “how-to” videos.

Below is their welcome video (if you can’t see it, click here):

Looks like a great resource for those who aren’t too sure how to do something in WordPress. As always if you would like to TALK to someone about how to use WordPress, or you’re uncomfortable with the interface, please get in touch.

WordPress 2.6 Is Coming Soon

Wordpress 2.6 is due shortly. I doubt that it will be released on time, though that never really bothers me as I would rather it works than be rushed out prematurely just to hit an artificial deadline.

For those who are signed up to my Monthly Maintenance Package, they will get upgraded by me as part of this.

A couple of interesting articles about the new version are available. Weblog Tools Collection talks about:
– Post revisioning.
– Tumbling your posts.
– Admin interface speed improvements (by the use of Google Gears).
– (De)Activating plugins in bulk.
– Other technical changes.

Technosailor also goes into detail about:
– Post revisioning.
– Google Gears.
– Avatar Options.
– Press This! feature.
– More technical details.

Very interesting for when you blog is upgraded and you think “I wonder what this does?”. Just remember, you should be making at least weekly backups of your blog database, and more for mission critical blogs. And aren’t they all critcial?!

Five Tips To Improve Your Conversion

As an internet professional I read, and watch, a lot of information online about websites and how to improve them. Here are five quick tips I learned this week about improving the conversion of your website, blog, ecommerce site, newsletter or squeeze page:

1. Use the word “your”. Treating visitors as if they’re people (even friends), and your site is all about them can increase your sign-up or conversion rates.

2. Add video, video and more video. Something I don’t do enough of myself, but it works. Whether it’s a video loading/squeeze page to get newsletter signups, a demo of your company’s services, or even a silent, short video of the product you’re selling, the evidence is that it could be phenomenal for your conversion rate. Don’t believe me? Watch this video on the subject.

3. A flashing arrow can help. Yes, really. I’m against flashing graphics in a lot of situations (and especially more than one on a page), but apparently this can really help. Look, isn’t it nice?

4. Add a Call Me button, usually this is done with Skype, and is very easy to do. Being able to contact someone easily, especially before purchasing something.

5. Tell them what your site is about and how it can help them. Very obvious I know, but sometimes your company name may have nothing to do with what you provide. Don’t leave it to someone to work out for themselves, let them know immediately.

Quick and easy isn’t it?

How To Add Google Analytics To Your Blog

Another question I get frequently is how to add Google Analytics to a WordPress blog. The good news is that it’s incredibly easy.

1. Download the Google Analytics plugin.
2. Upload the plugin via FTP and activate it in you WordPress Dashboard plugins menu.
3. Go to Google Analytics and sign up/in. Add your new website, and get the tracking code.
4. Back in WordPress, go to the Google Analytics plugin options page (under Plugins) and enter the UA-XXXXXX number that appears in your tracking code. There are some other options that you can configure and read about on the plugin homepage.

What’s the benefit of using this plugin over adding the tracking code to your theme?
a) It is set not to track admin users – when you’re logged in the code won’t appear, and you won’t be tracked, potentially skewing the results.
b) If you change theme you won’t need to remember to add the code again.
c) No need to edit any html/php files.

Below is a Google-made introduction to Google Analytics, it’s an excellent overview and a good way to spend 10 minutes of your time. If you can’t see this video, click here. As always if you have any further questions, please let me know.

I have a WordPress Blog. Now What?

The “now what?” moment has hit many of my clients, and I don’t like to leave them hanging. They may just want an install or upgrade but usually I end up straying into more technical aspects and even, dare I say it, blog consulting!

Blog Settings

First things first, change your password. You get given a random password, it’s hard to remember and you’ll forget it. Yes you will. Go to your profile and change it. In fact, to be even more secure while you’re there you can set up another admin user with a different username. Then log out, log in with the new admin username and delete the user called “admin”. This is because everyone knows WordPress blogs have a username of admin and this makes it slightly easier for them to try to hack into your site.

Delete the standard Hello World post. And it’s comment.

Update the About page. A standard one will have been created for you so edit it to your needs.

Change the tagline for you blog. It says “Just another WordPress weblog”. Your theme may or may not display this tagline, but the default is not what you want it to be.

Get rid of all the default standard links in the blogroll. Why link to sites that might not be relevant to your blog or it’s readers?

Configure your discussion options. Here you can set whether blog comments are left automatically or they’re held for you to approve. I like to put “An administrator must always approve the comment”, as nothing worse than spam getting through even if you have anti-spam plugins installed.

Configure Permalinks. Permalinks are the part of the URL that comes after your domain name when on a single post or Page page. WordPress handles these automatically so you don’t have to (though you can alter them if you really want to). My preferred format at the moment is /%post_id%/%postname%/ which gives the post number and then the post name (obviously).

Create Categories. This is an important step, as they will help organise your content on your blog. I like to think of categories as broad folders, like Cars or Birds. You can add categories whenever you like so you don’t have to think of everything up front.

There are many more things to do, such as set up Feedburner, change your theme, change you comments wording, add an email subscription box, set up Google Analytics and so on, some of which I will cover in future posts.

Blog Content

The above is all very well but the time comes where you actually have to write for your blog! The following is written by my blog mentor, and friend, Yaro Starak, who is opening the doors to his Blog Mastermind coaching program today!

“In every bloggers life comes a special day – the day they first launch a new blog. Now unless you went out and purchased someone else”s blog chances are your blog launched with only one very loyal reader – you. Maybe a few days later you received a few hits when you told your sister, father, girlfriend and best friend about your new blog but that”s about as far you went when it comes to finding readers.

Here are the top 10 techniques new bloggers can use to find readers. These are tips specifically for new bloggers, those people who have next-to-no audience at the moment and want to get the ball rolling.

It helps if you work on this list from top to bottom as each technique builds on the previous step to help you create momentum. Eventually once you establish enough momentum you gain what is called "traction", which is a large enough audience base (about 500 readers a day is good) that you no longer have to work too hard on finding new readers. Instead your current loyal readers do the work for you through word of mouth.

Top 10 Tips

10. Write at least five major “pillar” articles. A pillar article is a tutorial style article aimed to teach your audience something. Generally they are longer than 500 words and have lots of very practical tips or advice. This article you are currently reading could be considered a pillar article since it is very practical and a good “how-to” lesson. This style of article has long term appeal, stays current (it isn’t news or time dependent) and offers real value and insight. The more pillars you have on your blog the better.

9. Write one new blog post per day minimum. Not every post has to be a pillar, but you should work on getting those five pillars done at the same time as you keep your blog fresh with a daily news or short article style post. The important thing here is to demonstrate to first time visitors that your blog is updated all the time so they feel that if they come back tomorrow they will likely find something new. This causes them to bookmark your site or subscribe to your blog feed.

You don”t have to produce one post per day all the time but it is important you do when your blog is brand new. Once you get traction you still need to keep the fresh content coming but your loyal audience will be more forgiving if you slow down to a few per week instead. The first few months are critical so the more content you can produce at this time the better.

8. Use a proper domain name. If you are serious about blogging be serious about what you call your blog. In order for people to easily spread the word about your blog you need a easily rememberable domain name. People often talk about blogs they like when they are speaking to friends in the real world (that”s the offline world, you remember that place right?) so you need to make it easy for them to spread the word and pass on your URL. Try and get a .com if you can and focus on small easy to remember domains rather than worry about having the correct keywords (of course if you can get great keywords and easy to remember then you’ve done a good job!).

7. Start commenting on other blogs. Once you have your pillar articles and your daily fresh smaller articles your blog is ready to be exposed to the world. One of the best ways to find the right type of reader for your blog is to comment on other people’s blogs. You should aim to comment on blogs focused on a similar niche topic to yours since the readers there will be more likely to be interested in your blog.

Most blog commenting systems allow you to have your name/title linked to your blog when you leave a comment. This is how people find your blog. If you are a prolific commentor and always have something valuable to say then people will be interested to read more of your work and hence click through to visit your blog.

6. Trackback and link to other blogs in your blog posts. A trackback is sort of like a blog conversation. When you write a new article to your blog and it links or references another blogger”s article you can do a trackback to their entry. What this does is leave a truncated summary of your blog post on their blog entry – it”s sort of like your blog telling someone else’s blog that you wrote an article mentioning them. Trackbacks often appear like comments.

This is a good technique because like leaving comments a trackback leaves a link from another blog back to yours for readers to follow, but it also does something very important – it gets the attention of another blogger. The other blogger will likely come and read your post eager to see what you wrote about them. They may then become a loyal reader of yours or at least monitor you and if you are lucky some time down the road they may do a post linking to your blog bringing in more new readers.

5. Encourage comments on your own blog. One of the most powerful ways to convince someone to become a loyal reader is to show there are other loyal readers already following your work. If they see people commenting on your blog then they infer that your content must be good since you have readers so they should stick around and see what all the fuss is about. To encourage comments you can simply pose a question in a blog post. Be sure to always respond to comments as well so you can keep the conversation going.

4. Submit your latest pillar article to a blog carnival. A blog carnival is a post in a blog that summarizes a collection of articles from many different blogs on a specific topic. The idea is to collect some of the best content on a topic in a given week. Often many other blogs link back to a carnival host and as such the people that have articles featured in the carnival often enjoy a spike in new readers.

To find the right blog carnival for your blog, do a search at blogcarnival.com.

3. Submit your blog to blogtopsites.com. To be honest this tip is not going to bring in a flood of new readers but it”s so easy to do and only takes five minutes so it”s worth the effort. Go to Blog Top Sites, find the appropriate category for your blog and submit it. You have to copy and paste a couple of lines of code on to your blog so you can rank and then sit back and watch the traffic come in. You will probably only get 1-10 incoming readers per day with this technique but over time it can build up as you climb the rankings. It all helps!

2. Submit your articles to EzineArticles.com. This is another tip that doesn’t bring in hundreds of new visitors immediately (although it can if you keep doing it) but it”s worthwhile because you simply leverage what you already have – your pillar articles. Once a week or so take one of your pillar articles and submit it to Ezine Articles. Your article then becomes available to other people who can republish your article on their website or in their newsletter.

How you benefit is through what is called your “Resource Box”. You create your own resource box which is like a signature file where you include one to two sentences and link back to your website (or blog in this case). Anyone who publishes your article has to include your resource box so you get incoming links. If someone with a large newsletter publishes your article you can get a lot of new readers at once.

1. Write more pillar articles. Everything you do above will help you to find blog readers however all of the techniques I’ve listed only work when you have strong pillars in place. Without them if you do everything above you may bring in readers but they won’t stay or bother to come back. Aim for one solid pillar article per week and by the end of the year you will have a database of over 50 fantastic feature articles that will work hard for you to bring in more and more readers.

I hope you enjoyed my list of traffic tips. Everything listed above are techniques I’ve put into place myself for my blogs and have worked for me, however it”s certainly not a comprehensive list. There are many more things you can do. Finding readers is all about testing to see what works best for you and your audience and I have no doubt if you put your mind to it you will find a balance that works for you.”

The Blog Content section of this article was written by Yaro Starak, a professional blogger and my blog mentor. He is the leader of the Blog Mastermind mentoring program designed to teach bloggers how to earn a full time income blogging part time.

How To Become A Blog Expert – Why Most Bloggers Are Stuck Reporting

Yaro Starak will very soon re-open his doors to Blog Mastermind, in my opinion the best blog coaching and mentoring program out there. I’ve personally been through the course so have first hand experience of how good it is. His Blog Profits Blueprint FREE eBook is a must read for bloggers. Below he discusses how to move from being a reporter to an expert.

“There are basically two types of bloggers in the world – reporters and experts – and some people perform both roles (usually the experts, it’s hard for reporters to become experts, but it’s easy for experts to report).

If you have ever taken an Internet marketing course or attended a seminar specifically for beginners, you have probably heard about the two different methodologies. Whenever the business model is based on content, and if you blog for money then the model is based on content, people are taught to either start as reporters, or if possible step up as experts.

I’ll be frank; you want to be the expert.

Reporters leverage the content of the experts and in most cases people start off as reporters because they haven’t established expertise. Experts enjoy the perks of preeminence, higher conversion rates because of perceived value, it’s easier to get publicity, people are more likely to seek you out rather than you having to seek others out, joint ventures come easier, etc… experts in most cases simply make more money and attract more attention.

Most Bloggers Are Reporters

The thing with expertise is that it requires something – experience. No person becomes an expert without doing things and learning. Bloggers usually start out without expertise and as a result begin their blogging journey by talking about everything going on in their niche (reporting) and by interviewing and talking about other experts (reporting again).

There’s nothing wrong with reporting of course and for many people it’s a necessity at first until you build up some expertise. Unfortunately the ratios are pretty skewed when it comes to reporters and experts – there are a lot more reporters than there are experts, hence reporters tend to struggle to gain attention and when they do, they often just enhance the reputation of the expert they are reporting on.

Click here to get The Blog Profits Blueprint

Don’t Replicate Your Teacher

If you have ever spent some time browsing products in the learn Internet marketing niche you will notice a pattern. Many people first study Internet marketing from a “guru” (for lack of a better term). The guru teaches how he or she is able to make money online, and very often the view that the student gleams is that in order to make money online you have to teach others how to make money online.

The end result of this process is a huge army of amateurs attempting to replicate what their teacher does in the same industry – the Internet marketing industry – not realizing that without expert status based on a proven record and all the perks that come with it, it’s next to impossible to succeed.

Even people, who enjoy marginal success, say for example growing an email list of 1,000 people, then go out and launch a product about how to grow an email list of 1,000 people. Now I have no problems with that, I think it’s fine to teach beginners and leverage whatever achievements you have, the problem is that people gravitate to the same niche – Internet marketing – and rarely have any key points of differentiation.

How many products out there do you know of that all claim to teach the same things – email marketing, SEO, pay per click, affiliate marketing, and all the sub-niches that fall under the category of Internet marketing. It’s a saturated market, yet when you see your teachers and other gurus making money teaching others how to make money (and let’s face it – making money as a subject is one of the most compelling) – your natural inclination is to follow in their footsteps.

If the key is to become an expert and you haven’t spent the last 5-10 years making money online, I suggest you look for another niche to establish expertise in.

Report on Your Process, Not Others

The secret to progress from reporter to expert is not to focus on other experts and instead report on your own journey. When you are learning how to do something and implementing things day by day, or studying other people’s work, you need to take your process and what you do as a result of what you learn, and use it as content for your blog.

It’s okay to talk about experts when you learn something from them, but always relate it to what you are doing. If you learn a technique from an expert it’s fine to state you learned it from them (and affiliate link to their product too!) but you should then take that technique, apply it to what you are doing and then report back YOUR results, not there’s. Frame things using your opinion – your stories – and don’t regurgitate what the expert said. The key is differentiation and personality, not replication.

Expertise comes from doing things most people don’t do and then talking about it. If you do this often enough you wake up one day as an expert, possibly without even realizing how it happened, simply because you were so good at reporting what you did.

Become A Blogger logo

You Are Already An Expert

Most people fail to become experts (or perceived as experts) because they don’t leverage what they already know. Every person who lives a life learns things as they go, takes action every day and knows something about something. The reason why they never become an expert is because they choose not to (which is fine for some, not everyone wants to be an expert), but if your goal is to blog your way to expertise and leave the world of reporting behind you have to start teaching and doing so by leveraging real experience.

Experience can come from what you do today and what you have done previously; you just need to take enough steps to demonstrate what you already know and what you are presently learning along your journey. I know so many people in my life, who are experts simply by virtue of the life they have lived, yet they are so insecure about what they know, they never commit their knowledge to words for fear of…well fear.

Blogs and the Web in general, are amazing resources when you leverage them as a communication tool to spread your expertise because of the sheer scope of people they can reach. If all you ever do is talk to people in person and share your experience using limited communication mediums, you haven’t much hope of becoming an expert. Take what you know and show other people through blogging, and you might be surprised how people change their perception of you in time.

Reporting Is A Stepping Stone

If your previous experience and expertise is from an area you want to leave behind or you are starting from “scratch”, then reporting is the path you must walk, at least for the short term.

Reporting is a lot of fun. Interviewing experts, talking about what other people are doing and just being part of a community is not a bad way to blog. In many cases people make a career of reporting (journalism is about just that), but if you truly want success and exponential results, at some point you will have to stand up and proclaim yourself as someone unusually good at something and then proceed to demonstrate it over and over again.

Have patience and focus on what you do to learn and then translate that experience into lessons for others, and remember, it’s okay to be a big fish in a small pond, that’s all most experts really are.”

As I mentioned at the start, this article was by Yaro Starak, a professional blogger and my blog mentor. He is the leader of the Blog Mastermind blog mentoring program designed to teach bloggers how to earn a full time income blogging part time.

Get more information about Blog Mastermind.

How To Add An Email Subscription Box To Your Blog

Another of the great questions I got in response to my newsletter is regarding how to add an email subscription box to your website or blog. So I’m going to look at two methods, Feedburner and AWeber.

Feedburner

Feedburner is a service where it makes it easy for people to subscribe to your feed, and tracks all your subscribers in one location. They also provide an email subscription service, where subscribers will receive a daily email containing all your blog posts for that day (no posts = no email, 10 posts = 1 email).

1. Log in/sign-up to Feedburner (to sign-up you’ll need your blog’s RSS feed which will be something like this http://www.your domain name.com/feed/).

2. Once logged in or set-up, click on your Feed name to go to your Feed Stats Dashboard.

3. Then click the Publicize tab – See the image below.

4. In the left hand column you will see an option called Email Subscriptions, click this.

5. Choose how you want your email to be delivered. For now we’ll choose Feedburner.

6. Click Activate to begin the service.

7. You will now be presented with the form code to put on your site. Scroll down past the AWeber instructions to read how to put this on your blog.

AWeber

AWeber is a professional email newsletter and autoresponder sequence service. I’ve been a member of over a month now and have been thoroughly impressed with their service. From the quick technical support, to the flexibility of their autoresponder and newsletter broadcasts, if you don’t mind paying for a great solution then I would definitely recommend giving their 30 day risk free membership a go (note this isn’t free, just risk-free meaning you can get a refund within 30 days).

To create a sign up form, simply sign into your account:

1. Go to List Settings > Web Form. If you have not set up you list you will be asked to enter certain details before being able to proceed.

2. Press the Create Web Form button.

3. On the form details tab enter:
Form Name: Your unique name for the form
Type: In this example we’re just doing the in-line form, we can experiment with others later (like the Pop-over/Hover that appears on my Contact page for new visitors).
Thank You Page: We can customise this later, for now we can leave it as AWeber’s default page.
Ad tracking: You can give you form a name here so if you have multiple forms you can see which one a subscriber used to sign up.
Press Next.

4. The Design Form window will appear. I like to keep the form short and simple, maybe adding the Name box like I have. Just hover over it with your mouse and press the green + button when it appears. You can also add a headline to your form, and change the name of the submit button. You can always change the form options later.

5. Once you press Save you will be taken back to a list of all your forms. You will see a Get HTML column, and link. When you click on that you will be presented with two options: Javascript or raw HTML. I recommend using the javascript form, the difference is with the javascript form you can track the number of times it is displayed (and compare it to number of sign-ups to find out your sign-up rate), and while the HTML form doesn’t allow this, it does allow you to customise the form outside of AWeber. For now we’ll stick with the javascript.

Adding the code to your blog

If you have signed up for Feedburner, or AWeber, then the act of putting the code onto your blog is essentially the same. Here I will show you how to simply add the code to the sidebar of your WordPress blog (version 2.5+) and am assuming your theme is widget enabled.

1. In another window or tab, open your blog. You will need your email code window still open, so don’t close that just yet.

2. Go to your WordPress blog’s management dashboard.

3. Select Design, then Widgets.

4. If you see no widgets here then your theme may not be widget enabled and you will have to add the code directly to your theme files. Please contact me if this is so and I can talk you through the options.

5. On the left hand side, find Text Widget and press Add to add it to your sidebar on the right hand side.

6. Once added on the right hand side, press Edit to open the widget. At the top of the widget you can give the widget a title, such as “Subscribe to Email Updates”.

7. As shown in the image above, copy the code that you’ve been given by your email service (javascript of HTML) into the main body of the text widget. Don’t worry about changing it for now.

8. Once you have the widget title and code in place, remember to press Change to close the Text widget box, and then press Save Changes.

Your subscription box should now appear on your website. In a later tutorial I’ll show you how to change the styling of this. You can re-order your sidebar widgets by dropping and dragging them up and down your sidebar. Just remember to press Save Changes in order to see the results on your website.

You can also put this code in the body of a blog post too, like my newsletter sign up box below! Any questions, or problems please let me know.