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WordPress Plugins A to Z Podcast and Transcript for See complete show notes for Episode #344 here.
It’s Episode 344 and we’ve got plugins for Dropbox Backups, Changing Admin Colors, Notifications, AMP for Posts, WooCommerce Client Emulation and Resellers. It’s all coming up on WordPress Plugins A-Z!
Marcus: It’s Episode 344 and we’ve got plugins for Dropbox Backups, Changing Admin Colors, Notifications, AMP for Posts, WooCommerce Client Emulation, and Resellers. It’s all coming up next on WordPress Plugins A to Z.
WordPress, it’s the most popular content management and website solution on the internet. And with over 60,000 plugins to choose from, how do you separate the junk from the gems? Join John Overall and Marcus Couch for this weekly unrehearsed conversation about the latest and greatest in WordPress plugins. This is WordPress Plugins A to Z.
John: Well good morning, good afternoon, or good evening, wherever you happen to be hiding out there on the globe today. Coming to you direct from the Brewery Overlook in beautiful Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, I’m John Overall.
Marcus: And from the Beachside Bunker on the Pacific Ocean in Laguna Beach, California, I am Marcus Couch.
John: And we have the usual great show for you today, but don’t forget right off the top, you can get all the show notes over at wppluginsatoz.com and we’d greatly appreciate it if you took a few minutes to drop into the Stitcher Radio, Google Play, and the iTunes store. Leave us a review and subscribe to the show. And there’s a very easy way you can do that, isn’t it, Marcus?
Marcus: Yeah, run up to your phone, your friend’s phone, and go, “Hey, Siri…”
Marcus: Play the WordPress Plugins A to Z podcast.
Siri: Okay, WordPress Plugins from A to Z podcast coming up.
Now from Websource…Hello, hello.
John: There you go.
John: Nice, simple, and easy.
Siri: That’s what I thought!
John: I love that, Siri. Nice, simple, and easy, and she pops right in there for me. All right, yay, Siri!
John: Nice, simple, and easy, and you can probably do the same thing with your Google phone too by just hollering, “Hey, Google! Subscribe me to the WP Plugins A to Z podcast.”
John: And also, don’t forget you can check out our training videos, screencasts, and watch us live on YouTube when we do our live shows. Follow us on Twitter so that you can know when the live show is going to be happening next.
Marcus: That’s right, and make sure you go to our website, wppluginsatoz.com and subscribe to our newsletter. That’s where we put in all the special cool things that are going on in the WordPress community and the WordPress world, news, reviews, and otherwise that we don’t cover in plugin form here on the show.
John: Okay, and that takes us right into the meat and potatoes of the show.
All right, and we have our usual great allotment of six great plugins and first up from me is a plugin called Backup & Restore Dropbox. Now, this is a plugin that if you don’t have any other real options for making your backups and restores and also if you have a smaller version of your website because Dropbox is notorious for not taking large chunks of data from WordPress unless they finally fix that.
But this one here allows you to connect to your Dropbox folder and do your backups, back them up to your Dropbox, which allows you to get all your files off of the server into a place that you can find them in your Dropbox, on your computer, on whatever other computer you have synced up to it, and it also allows you to then restore back from that Dropbox location if you have a complete failure or a hack.
Having a good backup is paramount as one of my clients found out last week, who came to me after a couple of years of not working with me after his site had been hacked. Somebody else had gone in, tried to fix it, didn’t complete it, they lost images, their CSS – all kinds of things. Fortunately, I was able to go into some old backups I had from when I did the work, along with other miscellaneous thing, and restored the site. But this was a lesson that make sure your backups are available and that you test those backups from time to time. So do that using this plugin, Backup & Restore Dropbox, a really great plugin that works pretty nicely and I gave this one a 5-Dragon rating, so go check it out.
Marcus: Ooh, yeah. No, I love doing Dropbox and backing up into Dropbox.
Marcus: That’s one of the best – best features of Dropbox that it can handle all those things and they can all hook together like that.
John: Yep. I had my Dropbox sync across three different computers.
John: So not only is it in the cloud, but I have it on three different computers, so…
Marcus: Yeah, and your phone too if you download the Dropbox app.
John: Yeah, I don’t have that much storage space on my phone. I have —
Marcus: Well, you don’t actually download – Dropbox doesn’t actually download it to your phone —
Marcus: — you’re just more looking through your directories.
John: Oh, yeah. Finding out what’s there. Yeah, that’s —
John: — that’s nice, because once in a while I have to go fetch a file and use my phone or my iPad for it, so…
Marcus: Right. So the first plugin I’ve got for the show is called Clean WP Admin Theme, and what this does is actually kind of just cleans up the WP Admin dashboard, gives you the ability to change around the styling options and change the colors. I actually used this plugin to match a corporate client’s official style guide colors and I made it so that it matched their brand and their logo, and it looked great. It looked – it was an intranet site —
Marcus: — and it matched perfectly. And I wanted the backend to be exactly how the rest of the color structure and everything else was for the site. Check it out. It’s called Clean WP Admin Theme and I rated this a 4 out of 5.
John: That’s a really nice feature when you’re working on corporate clients, because they like that consistency.
Marcus: Of course.
John: Especially on an intranet site.
Marcus: It’s those little touches that do it.
John: That’s what makes you stand out amongst all the competition out there in the world. Okay, well this show is brought to you by JohnOverall.com.
With all the changes in website requirements, pulled, compromised, and abandoned plugins out there, now is the time to update and upgrade your WordPress website. JohnOverall.com has 20-plus years’ experience and offers hosting, maintenance programs, support, and more to keep your site up-to-date and running smoothly. We offer free estimates and only bill you for the time you use, not by the block. While you’re caring for your business, let JohnOverall.com care for your website. Think of us when you think of WordPress. Visit JohnOverall.com.
There we go.
Marcus: Yeah! And I’ll have something to play soon.
John: Absolutely. All right, well let’s talk about the contest which is still running until February 14th, and that is we are currently running a contest where you can win yourself a premium license from Foliovision for their FV Player plugin. And this is a really great plugin that allows you to customize up the YouTube videos, Vimeo videos, or all the other video sources you have out there on your website. The value of the license is $75. You can also check out the interview I did with Alec Kinnear, the CEO and founder of Foliovision. There’s a link in the show notes that’ll take you to that interview. And also, to enter the contest, just go to wppluginsatoz.com/contest.
Marcus: Yeah, that is a cool plugin. I’m gonna dig deeper and deeper into it as we go.
John: Yeah, probably three or four episodes out here, we’ll have a very thorough review both from you and me on this plugin, so —
John: All right, well that brings us up to our next set of plugins. The next one I have up for you is called Better Notifications for WordPress, and this one came about for me because I am in the process of across many of my clients. As many of you started noticing out there, there’s lots of plugins that have been abandoned or no longer developed. They haven’t had any development or updates for 2+ years. There’s been some that have been pulled from the Repository because they’ve been sold and bought by malware developers, etc. etc.
So I’m proactive and going through my clients’ websites and finding the plugins that need to be replaced and we’re replacing them. We had a plugin in there – I don’t remember what it was – that changed the notification emails that go out from WordPress, to customize them up to make them more personal and more understanding, and we needed a plugin that would do the same sort of thing.
Well, Better Notifications for WordPress does that for you. It’s kept up-to-date, it allows you to go in there and create templates for all of the notification types that are available in WordPress and you can customize them up in any way you want to send out a very pretty looking email that fits your website and your branding. So go check it out: Better Notifications for WordPress, and I gave it a 4-Dragon rating.
Marcus: Yeah, that’s cool. All right, so let’s talk about AMP for a minute —
John: Uh-oh, we just lost you.
John: Your voicing just dropped right off.
Marcus: What now?
John: I’m gonna pause. Go.
Marcus: Yep? So I’ve been looking at AMP a lot, and that’s the mobile-optimized pages that Google wants you to have. You know, for the life of me, I don’t think I want to dumb down some of my actual pages into some other format. I kind of want to keep it looking the cool, the way that I designed it in mobile and not broken out into just some text version of what my site is. And so I found this plugin called POST AMP and what’s kind of cool about this is it makes sure that none of your pages get AMP-rendered but all of your posts actually do.
Marcus: And that sort of makes sense that you’d want your posts to go into AMP and not necessarily your pages and lose all their styling. So this plugin does the trick. It’s called POST AMP and that’s really all it does. It just makes your posts AMP-compliable and not your pages. I tried it out, it worked, does the job. Easy-peasy but not groundbreaking. I rated this one a 3 out of 5.
John: Well, that’s a cool plugin. It could be quite useful.
John: Okay, well that brings us about to listener feedback, audio clips, and if you would like to participate in the show, all you have to do is either go to the website at wppluginsatoz.com, leave us a SpeakPipe by going to the lower right-hand corner, clicking the icon, and recording a message, or you can drop in at out Contact page, send us an email, or you can hit us up on Twitter or Facebook with any comment or question you’d like and we will enter them into the show here and respond back to you as soon as we can.
John: With that we have —
Marcus: We got a question from Mindy in Round Rock, Texas and she says:
“Hi guys, I’m looking for the best way to export all of my users on my site into Excel. The only thing I’ve found so far exports XML, which I have no idea how to open. Can you help?”
Of course we can. Come on, Mindy.
John: Yeah, absolutely.
Marcus: We’re the guys! Yes, the plugin you want to use is Export Users to CSV, and that’s in the Repository. We left a link for you in the show notes. It’s a really great plugin that’s never let me down. I’ve used it a number of times including enormous membership sites with about 10,000 people in it and I needed to export that, make sure that we were kind of cross-referenced, everybody had their site, everybody had their access, their passwords, all that stuff within this big, enormous membership site. So this one should definitely do the job for you and give you all the details you would ever need to know about your user base, so check it out: Export Users to CSV.
John: There you go. Answers, answers, answers! That’s what we do. And also, this show – value-for-value model, meaning if you get any value out of it, please give some value back. And to do that, all you’ve got to do is go to wppluginsatoz.com/donate where you can donate any amount you want and we have preset amounts. What that money does is it helps support the show by paying for the essentials such as web hosting, bandwidth, transcription charges, etc. etc. All the little basics and essentials that everyone seems to forget that we have to pay for out of pocket. So please support the show by going to wppluginsatoz.com/donate and if you donate more than $50, you can leave us a note with a link in it. We’ll feature it in the show notes and on the live shows, we’ll make sure we give you a live callout for that.
Marcus: Yeah, absolutely. And yeah, a link and everything, so our site’s got some pretty good authority that helps them.
John: We have a six ranking on Google the last time I checked.
John: Which I think is – I understand that’s a pretty good ranking.
Marcus: Yeah, I’m gonna have to put some more links to my site now that you’ve reminded me.
Marcus: Thank you.
John: I’ve got a few going to mine but yeah, we are an authority. There’s no doubt. The site has been up for years and it has talked about nothing but WordPress plugins in the entire time, so it is definitely an authority.
Marcus: So speaking of talking about WordPress plugins the entire time, let’s round this sucker out here, John.
John: All right, the final set of plugins we have today is – the last one I’ve got for you is a GoDaddy Reseller Store plugin. Now, I’ve been waiting for something like this for years. Now, I’ve been a Wild West domain reseller, which of course GoDaddy took it over completely a couple of years ago. They drove me nuts with the interface changes for a while, but they’ve finally settled down and it’s working quite nicely. But one of the biggest problems I have was how to interface it into my WordPress website so that I could use my WordPress website to sell my domain resellers and other things through my GoDaddy reseller store and make myself a few extra bucks.
Now, this plugin here, I haven’t thoroughly tested yet, so the current ranking is temporary until I’ve got it thoroughly tested and come back and talk to you about it. But what it’s supposed to do is allow you to completely connect your GoDaddy reseller site to it, customize up the pages, update your themes, your product descriptions, images, all really done well. The plugin is produced by GoDaddy themselves, so I’m really hopefully that they’ve done it right.
They’ve got a video in here that shows you how to use it and you can talk to them to help sort out the problems, so I will be definitely giving this one a thorough once-over because I’m integrating everything into JohnOverall.com where I’ve got my web hosting and everything else fully integrated now. Now I want to get my domain reseller system into it also. So anyway, go check this plugin out: the GoDaddy Reseller Store, and currently the ranking is a 3-Dragon rating which may rise as I check this plugin out.
Marcus: Yeah, and there’s nothing to be ashamed about a 3.
John: Oh, no, no. A 3 from me is actually quite respectable.
John: You know, you get a 4, that’s doing damn good. If you hit a 5, you’ve knocked it out of the park.
John: It’s like I don’t give out fives very often. I’m really stingy with my fives.
Marcus: Yeah, and I don’t really put twos on. I don’t like twos.
John: I’ve done a few of ‘em and usually lately if I’ve hit a 2, I just kind of ignored it and didn’t bring it to the show unless it was a plugin that just annoyed me to no end and I wanted to warn people about it.
Marcus: That’s true. Well, this isn’t one of those warnings right now.
John: No, no. This is a good plugin.
Marcus: Now, to end the show here, I want to talk about a cool plugin called Shop as Client for WooCommerce. John, imagine you’ve got your own store – retail store – all that stuff, and you get a call from somebody that’s like, “Yeah, I want to order $1,000 worth of stuff, but I don’t have a computer.”
Marcus: How do you take that order?
Marcus: You want to still go through your e-commerce site.
Marcus: You still want to go through your website. Well, what do you do?
John: Yeah, that’s a good one.
Marcus: Well, Shop as Client for WooCommerce answers that problem.
Marcus: So it gives you as a shop manager or an administrator the ability to assign and enter a new order on the front end, register it to a new customer, taking advantage of all the front end stuff that wouldn’t exist maybe in the backend like, you know, adding a coupon code to an order or all that, and so you could be taking phone orders or in-person orders and just filling it out right on the site and charging, you know, a card. Take their card if you want to or, you know, have them pay later or whatever you know —
Marcus: — your preferences are there, and it does automatically assign that registered customer the next time they come back, so it also has a phone number so you can kind of – even if you wanted to just make WooCommerce sort of your order tracking system internally within your business, it would actually do that.
Marcus: You could ask somebody, you know, “Hey, what’s your phone number?” You know, like they do at the grocery store sometimes. They then pop it up, “Hey, there’s you. What can I get you? Do you need…” you know, “Do you need a red pair of socks you got last time? What can I get you?” You know? Those kinds of things.
Marcus: So it adds two new fields to the billing checkout section for logged-in administrators and shop managers and it lets you do everything as if you are a client with all the privileges of still being the administrator. It’s called Shop as Client for WooCommerce and I rated it a perfect 5 out of 5.
John: Very cool! That can actually be quite useful if you’re running an e-commerce site.
Marcus: Somebody had a need.
Marcus: And a programmer solved it, and that’s it.
John: That’s absolutely it. That’s the best thing about WordPress.
John: All right, well closing out this episode here, I covered up the following plugins: Backup & Restore Dropbox, which I gave a 5 to; Better Notifications for WordPress, which I gave a 4 to; and then the GoDaddy Reseller Store, which I gave a 3 to.
Marcus: And I talked about Clean WP Admin Theme, which gets a 4 out of 5; POST AMP gets a 3 out of 5; and Shop as Client for WooCommerce gets a perfect 5 out of 5.
John: All right, and a final note to all you developers out there who would like to support the show. If you’ve got a premium plugin and you would like to offer up a premium license for us to give away, please go to wppluginsatoz.com/plugin-contest where you can enter all the pertinent details and we can build a contest around your plugin premium license that we will then promote on the show. So go check it out and hey, it could be well worthwhile for you and get lots of promotion, and we do talk about the plugins that are in our contest.
John: Okay, and that’s all we’ve got for you now. Take care, bye-bye.
Reminders for the show:
All the show notes can be found at wppluginsatoz.com, and while you’re there, subscribe to the Thursday newsletter for more useful information directly to your email inbox. Wppluginsatoz.com is a show that offers honest and unbiased reviews of plugins by developers because you support the show. Help keep the show honest and unbiased by going to wppluginsatoz.com/donate and choose one of the weekly donation levels or make one that fits your budget. Help us make the show better for you by subscribing and reviewing to the show at Stitcher Radio, Google Play, and in the iTunes store. You can also watch the show live on YouTube, check out the screencasts and training videos, and remember to subscribe to us on YouTube, or follow the show on Twitter @wppluginsatoz.
John can be reached through his website at www.JohnOverall.com, or send him an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Marcus can also be reached through his website at marcuscouch.com or Twitter @marcuscouch. Thanks for watching and have a great day.
Thanks for listening to the show. This show is copyright by JohnOverall.com. So until next time, have yourselves a good morning, good afternoon, or a good evening, wherever you happen to be out there on the globe today.