WordPress Slows Down, Plus a New Analytics Plugin

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Did WordPress slam on the brakes? Image from guydonges

Over the last week, I have noticed some on and off discussion in the blogosphere and on Twitter about posts not being indexed as quickly by Google. As you probably know by now, Google has tweaked their algorithm to help keep their results fresh and useful, which means that many bloggers have discovered that they can rank well quite quickly for hot topics.

Although there was some speculation that Google had tweaked their algorithm again, after doing some digging, I discovered that there is a different root to this issue, which is discussed in this post: WordPress putting the real time web to a halt?

In an attempt to reduce the numbers of outbound pings a new undocumented ”feature” was introduced in WordPress 2.8 (this change is not mentioned in the WP 2.8 release notes).

Instead of notifing ping services every time a post is published or edited, pings are now sent once every hour, at the most. Every time a new post is published, WordPress checks if there is a ping batch queued to be sent within the next hour. If so, the ping is added to that batch. If there is nothing in the queue, a ping is scheduled to be sent after 3600 seconds (one hour).

Not only did Christian Bolstad get to the root of this issue in this post, but he also pointed out a solution:

If you want your posts to be announced as soon as possible and don’t want manually ping services such as Technorati, Twingly or FeedBurner you should install the WordPress plugin MaxBlogPress Ping Optimizer. It will override the new default behavour.

In addition to using this plugin to solve your potential pinging issues, I came across another plugin that you may be interested in trying out. The plugin is called Analytics 360, and it was developed by MailChimp (an email marketing product). Although this isn’t the only plugin that allows you to pull Google Analytics data into WordPress (it also pulls in MailChimp data), it has two unique feature that make it stand out from other related plugins:

Site Traffic: Visualize your site’s traffic trends and see how blog posts (check out the screenshot below for an example) and email campaigns affect overall traffic. You can also isolate traffic coming directly to your site from email campaigns with the “campaign traffic” tab.

List Growth: Chart the growth of your mailing list over time. Compare new and existing subscribers. And if you’ve got multiple lists, see how they stack up to each other.

Analytics 360

Screenshot from Blogstorm

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