Stats for your WordPress sidebar

Wp stats widgetI recently wanted to show my visitors how many posts I’ve written about WordPress on the WPVerse sidebar automatically so I wouldn’t have to manually keep updating it.

So I dug around and found WP-Statistics to give it a whirl. It has a ton of features just beyond showing number of total posts, you can also see how many comments have been published, number of visitors, page views, and much more details that you’d normally find in a true analytics package.

You can now see it in action on the sidebar to your right. I wish it would have a simple notes section below your stats so you could add some disclaimer or extra notes without having to drag text widget below it.

I am not giving up Google Analytics anytime soon so for now I am not turning on the page view stats/analytics tracking for now but if you’re not a fun of sticking a bunch of javascript onto your pages this might be an alternative.

So far so good and as of now, they’e had 11 reviews with an average of 4.5 stars so they’re off to a good start!

Download: WP-Statistics

Plugin Tip: Google Analyticator

One of our “must have” plugins is Google Analyticator by Ronald Heft. It will let you track the traffic on your WordPress site using Google Analytics. The best part is that it will give you an admin dashboard widget that shows how much traffic your site is getting every time you login to WP admin (see below).

Google accounts analytics

But recently we ran across some problems with Google Analyticator after we moved our site from MediaTemple to MDD hosting. For whatever reason simply pasting in the Google analytics ID number didn’t work. Google Analytics wasn’t receiving any of the tracking information, so we had to go for the alternative option to authenticate the plugin (and site) with Google.

However, when we tried to authenticate the plugin with Google, we got an ambiguous error message from Google’s site:

The site “” has not been registered

Unfortunately the error message from Google is quite cryptic and has no solution attached to it.

So how to fix this? It’s relatively easy: go to Google’s domain management site and register your domain.

The tricky part is on the second page of the signup process where it will ask you the “Target URL path prefix.” Simply type in your domain. You don’t need anything else unless your WordPress site exists in a folder – for example: /blog/ or /wp/ .

But for most people, just type the root URL, example:

Google accounts analytics register

We found it strange that we never had to do this before considering that setting up a Google analytics account should (in a perfect world) automatically create a domain account but we can’t complain since Google Analytics is a free product.

More background information about this particular issue and other trouble shooting tips at Ronald’s support forum…


Plugin of the Week: Google XML Sitemaps

Here’s our Quick Tip of the week and Plugin of the Week rolled into one. If you have not signed up for Google’s webmaster tool, we highly encourage you to do so ASAP. First like most of Google offerings, it’s free. What will it give you? It will give you some insight into the way your web site is seen by search engines, namely Google (of course), in terms of navigable pages, keywords, speed, and overall catch any problems that may prevent your site from being included in search engine results. Of course Google webmaster tools plays nice with Google other webmaster tool, Google Analytics too.

One of the things that you’ll need to take advantage of  are the webmaster tools is to submit a sitemap to help search engines make sure all your content is indexed/crawled. There’s not much rocket science in choosing a WordPress plugin to do that, we like the aptly named Google (XML) Sitemaps Generator for WordPress. It can be automated to generate a new site map whenever your site is updated.

Some SEO experts swear generating and submitting a Google XML sitemap is a standard best practice item, we can’t argue against since it takes you only about 10 minutes or so to do this.