How to Setup FeedBurner for WordPress

Every blog is using FeedBurner to burn their RSS feeds because it is a free feature rich system that you cannot turn down. FeedBurner provides statistics, feed optimization option, feed publication option and much more. Integrating FeedBurner & Google Analytics is a must for every WordPress blog. In this article, we will show you how you can setup your WordPress blog feeds with FeedBurner and use it to help take your blog to the next level.

Why FeedBurner is Important for Bloggers?

FeedBurner is a free service that is loaded with options that you do not get with the default WordPress feed. Some of the features include:

  • Statistics about your RSS Subscribers so you can analyze and optimize your blog posts.
  • Give your users multiple options to subscribe such as Email, and other feed-readers (Netvibes, Google etc).
  • Social Proof (Subscriber count)
  • Option to customize your feeds such as modify post headings, branding and more.
  • Option to ping various feed-reading services once you publish your posts.
  • Integrate Google Adsense to monetize your RSS feeds.
  • And more…

Just with the short list of features, you can see that it is a must have for all blogs. Now we can move onto setting up the FeedBurner Account.

Setting up Your FeedBurner for WordPress feeds

First you will need to have a Google account (any gmail account will work). Visit the feedburner service page to begin this process.

In the first step, you will type the link to your WordPress Blog Feed. If you have SEO Friendly WordPress URL Structure, then your feed link should be like yourdomain.com/feed/

In step 2, you will choose the title of your Feed and the address of your feed. It is advised to keep the title of your feed the same as your blog. It is best to keep your feed address short and memorable.

Technically your feeds are created, so you don’t need to follow the steps any more. Click on the Skip directly to Feed Management.

You will see a page with a link to tons of blogging platforms. Ignore all that as we will revisit them later in this article. Just cilck on the optimize tab that you see in the image below.

In step 5, we will work on optimizing your WordPress Blog Feed. You need to make sure that you haev Browser Friendly option activated, Smart Feed activated, and FeedFlare activated. You can activate other services if you want, but these 3 services are a must have. BrowserFriendly makes subscribing much simpler. SmartFeed ensures maximum compatibility with all feed reader applications. FeedFlare builds interactivity into posts by adding email this and other sharing options.

In step 6, we will take a look at all the publicize options for the feed. You need to allow Email Subscriptions on your site because there are users who prefer to get email updates rather than using Google reader. Pingshot must be activated because it notifies services when you post. Feedcount widget lets you show off your subscriber count. It is one of the best social proof methods. Awareness API comes handy if you are trying to list yourself on sites like BuySellAds because they can extract your subscriber count easily. There other snazzy options like Headline Animator, BuzzBoost that you can activate if you like.

Monetizing your feed is another good features of FeedBurner except it only allows you to use Google Adsense. So sign up with Google Adsense and follow their direction.

Once you have done all the above steps, you can click on the Analyze tab. Most likely you will see a screen like the one below because the stats are not recorded. Give it up to 24 hours and you will start seeing numbers there. Use the subscriber count, clicks and other useful data to improve your blog. See what your users like and don’t like with this stas, and then focus on the type of posts that your users like and enjoy.

Integrate FeedBurner into WordPress

Even though you have setup your feed with FeedBurner in the steps above, but you have not yet really integrated it with WordPress yet. First thing you want to do is stop diluting your feed and make it one. You need to create a redirect, so when users try to visit yourdomain.com/feed/ they are redirected to your feedburner feed page. This way you can keep track of the subscribers on your blog.

There is a plugin called FeedBurner FeedSmith which lets you create this redirect easily. You can also redirect your feeds using .htaccess file, but we will not be sharing that method because it is not something we recommend for beginners.

Most WordPress Themes are now coming with FeedBurner integration such as Headway Theme, Standard Theme, and others. If your theme is not compatible, then use the plugin above.

Add the Email Subscribe Box on your site

First visit Publicize => Email Subscriptions then copy and paste the code they give you in the template file that you like (mostly sidebar.php). Remember to customize the look of your email form, you would need to have prior knowledge of HTML and CSS.

If your blog does not have FeedBurner feeds, then get it right now.

CSS Tips & Trick – Preload an Image Without Using Javascript

You might have been observed on many web pages, when you mouse over on any image it disappears for 2-3 seconds and when you mouse over next time it works well, why it happens?

The answer is simple the image which is on hover class is not been loaded yet, as a result when you mouse over first time it takes time to load but when you mouse over next time it behaves normal because the image has been loaded to your computer and ready for the next time. Below you can see how various techniques are used to preload an image.

How to Preload an Image?

There are various techniques to preload an image, two methods are mentioned below without using JavaScript.

Method  1

In this method we create a div and keep it at the end of the HTML document or after footer div, a class is assign to a div say preloadClass which hides the image using display:none property but the images are loaded at the end of the document so when you hover an image it will not flash for the first time.

<div>
     <img src="images/hover-image1.png>
     <img src="images/hover-image2.png />
     <img src="images/hover-image3.png/>
</div>
.preloadClass{ display:none; }

.Demo:hover {  background-image:url(hover-image1.png);  }

Method  2

In this method we call the image from the stylesheet and set its position to –1000px to shift away the image so that it disappears from the page.

.preloadClass {
    background-image:url(hover-image.png);
    background-position: -1000px -1000px;
}

.Demo:hover { background: url(hover-image.png) no-repeat 50% 50%;}

I think adding extra markup to preload an image is not a good approach, especially where Web Standards are concerned. Mobile devices, may experience problems when dealing with the following preloading technique. So to avoid this we can implement Method 2.

The best solution is to use a sprite image, you just have to change the background position on hover class and you are done.

The above all technique is tested and compatible with all browsers.

CSS expert out there, do you have a better idea or solution please share it through your comments.

WordPress SEO

We are not those so-called SEO expert who can make your site rank #1 in Google for some X keyword. Rather than we believe SEO is a process which if initiated well, can yield results over the time.

We honestly believe WordPress is quite SEO ready platform and all you need is few settings change and plugins installed and few more things to accomplish most SEO for your blog.

If you surf around web you will be able to do most of things on your own. If you just too busy or hate playing with your server, you can hire us to do the job for you.

Please note that our SEO service is only for WordPress-based sites.

WordPress Migration Services

Apart from themes and plugins, we are very good at WordPress migration services.

We have explored WordPress internal structure to the extent where we can move anything, practically anything to WordPress!

Below are some of our popular WordPress migration services.

1. Migrate from Blogger.com to WordPress

Many bloggers start their first blog on Blogger.com and as their blogs grow then want to explore options they have to make their blog standout. Be it freely available thousands of free themes & plugins or flexibility of customization, Blogger.com comes nowhere close to WordPress.

Are you already running a blog on Blogger platform and want to move your blog to WordPress platform? If yes, then check our dedicated portal for Blogger to WordPress Migration Service

2. Migrate from Multiple WordPress to Single WordPress MU

If you run multiple WordPress blogs, all with their own WordPress setup, switching between blogs must become tiring at times.

3. Migrate from Static HTML to WordPress

Want to use WordPress as your CMS?

Feeling stuck with age-old HTML site!

This service is for you…

4. Migrate from Anything to WordPress

If you are using any CMS, custom-made application which doesn’t have exporter or migration tools to help you move to WordPress, we have right team ans skill to get your job done!

Custom Plugins Development

From a simple plugin which gets a small recurring task automated in your daily routine, to a commercial plugin which you want to sell as a product over the years, we cater all kind of needs of our clients.

Stuff we did till date…

  • Developed small but useful plugins to meet specific requirement of our clients (mostly bloggers, in this case)
  • Developed WordPress plugins for other service provides like Twitter, YouTube, Fliqz, etc
  • Big & Commercial Products for various companies. More on this later in section WordPress Plugin as Product.

Unlike themes, plugin projects often comes from companies/service provides where NDA restricts us from talking about them in details. Still you can see some of our amazing plugin work in our portfolio.

WordPress Plugin as Product

This is for people/companies who have brilliant ideas but don’t have a team which can execute their ideas professionally.

In this special package…

  • You send us your idea and other relevant details.
  • We go through your idea and then followup with Q&A rounds.
  • We get back to you with a proposal which contains complete roadmap, breakdown of different versions and features in them, cost/time estimation and few more interesting things for your product idea.
  • Once you approve our proposal, we start actual design & development of your product (plugin)
  • As we design roadmap, we know how to deliver future updates safely, without loosing old user-data.
  • It’s common practice to release base version for free and then sell paid addons. This is also known as freemium model. We handle such requirements at all levels.
  • All our product comes with free bug support, which means if you or your customer finds bugs in our code, we will fix them for free.
  • Apart from this we offer paid pre-sales/technical support direct to your customers at affordable prices and under your branding.
  • We also offer additional services like user-manual creation, video tutorials, branding, promotion, etc. These services are found to be quite useful by our clients who have ideas and money but no team or time to look after different aspect of their product.

Key Features of Our Service:

Points listed below applies to all plugins developed by us…

  • We develop a plugin which meet your exact requirement because we don’t start developments until requirements are clear
  • All our plugins follow best plugin development practices and always use latest WordPress features
  • We make plugin interfaces/settings page user-friendly. We believe plugins, like themes, can be made beautifully!
  • Our plugins avoid loading their stuff (js/css files) on unwanted pages which keep your server healthy
  • We follow coding standards and internal set of rules to make sure that our plugins don’t conflict with others

Free Unlimited Bug Fixing Support

In IT industry, it’s commonly believed that companies mint real money during support cycle. We don’t know about others but we fix bugs in our codes always for free. Yes, always!

So it’s in our best interest to make sure you get quality work in the very beginning from us. Also we treat bug reports with highest priority.

Theme Design & Customization

Even though WordPress community have thousands of free themes available to use & modify, you may still need a customized & personalized WordPress theme which your exact requirements and nothing else!

What we can do for you…

  • Designing a mockup (PSD) as well as its WordPress theme implementation
  • PSD to WordPress theme
  • Creating WordPress themes to match your existing non-WordPress site
  • WordPress theme with desired theme options page(s)
  • WordPress theme customization
  • Thesis Customization/Skin Development

In all our themes…

We not only create beautiful, eye-candy WordPress themes but also make sure that…

  • Have guarantee fast loading speed
  • Are Search engine friendly coded
  • Are WordPress 3.0 compatible
  • Pass w3c validation
  • Are cross browser compatible
  • themes care about user experience as first priority and complement your sites’ topic very well
  • themes utilize latest WordPress features and avoid outdated codes which one can find using shortcuts (read Google search)
  • themes put least load on server themselves (we do this by using techniques like CSS-Sprites, minimizing number of js/css files, etc)
  • themes pass w3c validation and also meet our internal quality guidelines which are updated from time to time
  • themes integrate with plugins of your choice safely and seamlessly
  • themes runs well in most browsers and special effects (if present) degrades gracefully in older browsers like IE6

By all means, designing a great WordPress theme isn’t purely matter of art. An experienced WordPress coder can fine at least 10 improvements in any WordPress theme which is coded by a great artist who is relatively new to the WordPress coding.

Why we are saying so? Because at M3WebWare, we make sure that a great design meets perfect execution by highly experienced WordPress coders and finally every theme goes through quality assurance process where more than 100 checks are run!

We pride ourselves on giving you great design & functionality for the user interface of your site or blog, running on a WordPress framework, by developing customized WordPress themes.