I don’t know about you, but I tend to get carried away over Christmas and the New Year looking for new tools and techniques to boost my own personal and business efforts for the coming year.
2018 was no exception. I upgrade to more premium services in these 2 weeks than at any other time of the year. 12 months ago, for example, I upgraded to the Pro version of Feedly, as I thought this would make it easier to identify good content to share with my followers on social media. It’s not quite worked out as I had planned, but it’s still a very good tool. It is important to support the people that build and maintain these products.
This year, having started [belatedly] to bone up on social media trends for 2019, I’m wondering whether it is worth upgrading my LinkedIn and subscribing to Buffer Premium services. As Google+ appears to be on its way out this year, maybe I don’t need the extra (4th) social platform that Buffer Pro ($15/month) offers, although it would be handy to schedule up to 100 posts in advance.
Feedly plays nicely with Buffer, and so my plan would be to spend 15 minutes a day on Feedly, identify some articles that would be useful to my audience, and then share them via Buffer, thereby keeping my Twitter, LinkedIn page, and Facebook page feeds well stocked. Does that sound like a plan to you? What do you do?
I’ll also probably upgrade to the Mailpoet Premium service ($99), although I do find their pricing a little confusing. Mailpoet is a WordPress plugin that allows you to run a subscriber/newsletter service from within your WordPress dashboard without having to resort to external services like MailChimp and Aweber.
Small, but constant, improvements
I’ve been putting off a rewrite of our own DMJ website. It’s way overdue, and clearly the best opportunity to showcase our skills, but it’s a case of cobbler’s children here! Nevertheless, it is something I will focus on in 2019, and will most likely continue the recent trend of starting now, perfecting later. We’ve built a few sites recently using this approach, which delivers the basis of a good site very quickly and at a really cost-effective price, allowing the website owner to either add the final tweaks themselves, or to use their retained care plan time over a number of months to improve their site.
Speaking of which… WordPress Care Plans
Those of you with WordPress websites will already know about our care plans, and most of you already have one of them. Using your retained time (Silver and Gold plans) each month is a great way to constantly improve your website. So, if you are on one of these plans, don’t forget to ask us to do stuff for you. If you are on our silver or gold plan, here are a few additional things we can offer you :
- Gravity Forms plugin – this is a premium WordPress forms plugin. Many of you already use this for your contact forms – great! You may alternatively be using something like ‘Contact Form 7’ or ‘Formidable Forms’. Whilst these are good, Gravity Forms offers a lot of additional features. We have a developer licence for this plugin, which means we can use it on any site! The basic licence is $59 per year, but our developer licence adds much more. Take a look at the features and add-ons, and let us know if you would like to switch to using this.
- Divi Theme – this is a modern, premium theme that is being used by hundreds of thousands of website owners. Most of the sites we have built over the past 12 months have used this theme. We are happy for our clients to benefit from our licence whilst they are on one of our care plans. The normal licence price is $80 per year.
- Monarch (Social Media Sharing for WordPress) – this plugin is available to us (and therefore you!) as part of our Divi licence. It’s a simple, but elegant way to incorporate social media sharing and following in your website. Take a look at the features and let me know if you’d like to add it to your site.
Pricing for 2019
Our website hosting and care plan prices have risen by less than 4% for 2019, and our hourly rate has increased to £55+vat. All other prices (SSL installation, site migration, performance packages, security packages etc.) remain the same.
We can confidently say that our WordPress Care Plans are the best value plans on offer – anywhere! We have resisted the temptation to rise to compete with others. It’s important not to exclude anyone when we can make a reasonable return without doing so.
Ask us about our care packages by filling out the form on this page, or…