Expired Domain – can I access WP dashboard?

Expired Domain – can I access WP dashboard?

If your WordPress website data is still on your old web host but your old domain name has expired you can still get your old WordPress site and move it to a new domain, as well as new web host.

Problem synopsis

1. Old domain expired hence your site is not reachable by old domain name.

2. WordPress admin dashboard cannot be accessed using old expired domain name.

3. WordPress data is still on old host.

4. Client wanted to use a new web host and new domain name, but wanted the same WordPress website as hosted on old expired domain name.

Solution Steps

1. Find out your old web host’s IP address from the cpanel of you old web host, where your old WordPress website data still resides.

2. Enter this IP address and old expired domain name in the hosts file on your computer. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hosts_(file)  for more details on your hosts file location.

The file is usually present in
Windows: C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc\hosts
Linux: /etc/hosts
Mac: /etc/private/hosts OR /etc/hosts

You may Google for how to edit hosts file or follow instruction on this article – https://www.howtogeek.com/howto/27350/beginner-geek-how-to-edit-your-hosts-file/

After editing your hosts file, your web browser should be able to resolve your old expired domain name to the IP address of your old web host. So, now clear your browser cache, or use an incognito window (private browsing mode of your browser) to access your old WordPress website, using your old expired domain name.

3. Once your WordPress website and WordPress dashboard is accessible using your old expired domain name, you should install the Duplicator plugin on your old WordPress website.

4. Next use the duplicator plugin to create “package files” (the backup file and installer script created by Duplicator plugin) on the old expired domain’s WordPress install. Download these package files to your system. The plugin is very intuitive to use but if you want details, please follow the instructions on this page – https://snapcreek.com/blog/wordpress/techniques/how-to-move-a-wordpress-site/

5. Upload these package files to the new web host of the new domain, using cpanel (or FTP) on the new host.

6. Create a new database, and a new database user, on the new web host. Note down this info as it will be required while restoring from the duplicator package file.

7. Execute duplicator plugin’s installer.php script and in most cases you will be successful in restoring your old (expired domain) website on the new domain, new host.

8. Your website should be accessible on the new domain name now.

9. Undo the changes you made to the hosts file on your computer.

10. If your old domain has expired you have fewer options in terms of preserving SEO, but if you already had a Google search console account on the old domain, you should use the “Change of address tool” at https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/9370220?hl=en&visit_id=637091560872705890-3050482164&rd=1 to inform Google about change of website address.

 

The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It

The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It by Michael E. Gerber could be a good read for many small business owners.

Watch this excellent summary video  –

How to keep PPC accounts healthy

This article on PPC Hero is a good pointer.

You could vary the frequency of executing the suggested steps as per your account’s requirements but the steps mentioned herein are all very relevant towards maintaining a healthy PPC account.

https://www.ppchero.com/ppc-task-checklist-for-account-success/

 

Google ads – Ad rotation “Optimize for clicks” does not always deliver the best results

  1. If you have a new ad that MUST run along side an old ad, it is advisable to manually switch campaign ad rotation settings from “Optimize for clicks” to “Rotate indefinitely” for some time.
    • Do NOT rely on “Optimize for clicks” because sometimes it does not give any impressions to the new ad – it does not test the new ad as it should. In my experience I have seen the algorithm fail too many times!
    • Sometimes the ad rotation algorithm decides in favour of the old ad in so few impressions that the new ad just does not get sufficient impressions to make any impact on the audience.
    • So manually switching ad rotation settings is advisable if you want to make sure that the new ad get a good chance to run along side the old ads.

  2. If you want to test a new ad, then also “Rotate indefinitely” might be better for some time. After some performance data is collected, then you could hand over ad rotation to the “Optimize for Clicks” algorithm if you want.

  3. In certain cases, where you want multiple messages to be shown to the same audience (for example if you want to highlight all the multiple product/ service benefits to your remarketing audience), again rotate indefinitely” might be a better option for you.

Without going into any details I will just link to an excellent article written on Adalysis in Sep 2018 –  https://adalysis.com/blog/google-ads-optimize-ad-serving-often-fails/

It’s over one year but the observations in this article are still very true. “Optimize for clicks” is not the best solution for all situations.

Piano Guys – social media marketing to sell pianos, to being a successful music group

Piano Guys are not a new music group.

I have been listening to them for the last few days but I didn’t know their story till today. I just read this wikipedia article and this entrepreneur.com article.

It’s interesting how it all started with them trying to make videos to sell pianos and while that didn’t work, they figured out something much bigger instead.

Copying text from the entrepreneur.com article

Before it was ever a musical quartet, The Piano Guys was the name of a piano store in St. George, Utah. As part of a social-media marketing strategy, the shop’s owner, Paul Anderson, asked Nelson and a local pianist named Jon Schmidt to perform in video clips he could post to the store’s YouTube and Facebook pages.

“In no time,” goes a joke Nelson tells onstage, “the four of us had 54 videos up on YouTube, 600 million video views, four albums with Sony and 3.7 million YouTube subscribers — and we still hadn’t sold a single piano.”

I found it funny that the videos were so successful but they did not help in achieving the intended goal.

At the same time, they did get results in a different way.

Their deal with Sony is also very interesting – it’s four years old now but it goes to show that tradidtional ways of doing things are fast breaking up. The internet is (or may be the platforms are?) the middle men what big media companies were at one time.

I just found the story interesting so thought of sharing it.

Piano Guys does make fabulous music. Here’s their website and youtube channel.

Google Local Pack Rank – Text in reviews impacts your rank

Let us say you have some service which is not your main business but still you want to rank for that in the Local Pack. How can you do that?

For example, a martial art gym or a gymnastics facility might want to rank for “Birthday Parties” but Birthday Parties are surely not their main business, so how can they do that?

One way is to encourage your users of that particular secondary service, to write descriptive reviews including the  name of that secondary service in the review, if possible. See the following screenshot for an example.

Text in reviews impacts your Local Rank

I am reasonably sure, that the review mentioning “sons birthday party” is helping “Champions Gymnastics” rank in the local pack for birthday party related search query.

Disclaimer – Champions Gymanstics is not my client. This is just a screnshot to illustrate my point.

Adwords country blocking and wordfence settings in WordPress

Wordfence is a very useful plugin for wordpress. However on most sites I have worked on recently, I have realized that most webadmins just install wordfence with default settings.

However if you are using Google Adwords, then do remember to uncheck the “Block access to the rest of the site (outside the login form)” in the “Country Blocking Options” within the “Blocking” submenu of Wordfence settings.

adwords country blocking policy and wordfence settings in wordpress

 

Wordfence also explain it here.

 

AdWords conversion tracking tag vs importing Google Analytics goals

Two useful resources

Differences Between AdWords Conversion Tags & Google Analytics Goals Import

Above article is a definite read to understand differences between using the AdWords conversion tags & importing Google Analytics goals into Adwords.

However, after reading above Lunametrics article you must read this detailed Google resource at

https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/2679221?hl=en

Does the new Global Site Tag (gtag.js) change anything mentioned in the above articles? (as in October 2017)

In my opinion, the new gtag.js does not change any of the details mentioned in the articles. It is just a new tracking code but GA and Adwords continue to handle data in the way explained in both above articles.

What do I prefer?

I prefer using both GA and Adwords tags together.

I set up interaction related goals (which are not real business goals but still important like “Viewed more than two pages”) using Google Analytics. I import these goals into Adwords and treat them as “soft-conversions”. These type of soft-conversions can be helpful in various cases, for example in analyzing the value of display clicks and other such cases. Mostly, I do not include these soft conversions in the conversions counted by Adwords, so these would show in “All conversions” column in Adwords but not in the “Conversions” column.

However in most Adwords accounts, I prefer the Adwords tag for counting hard conversions like form fills because if a paid click plays any role in a hard-conversion like generating a lead (form-fill), then I prefer attributing it to Adwords, rather than Organic search or anything else. (I understand that many people may not agree with this approach and neither am I advocating it as a definite best practice.)

I could still set up the hard conversions (like form fills) in Google Analytics too but I wont import them into Adwords. This would allow me to see the same data in a different perspective without messing up data.

As with most things concerning data analysis, there is no definite best method for all accounts, so it is good to understand differences between AdWords conversion tags & importing Google Analytics goals and using them appropriately.