Speed up that site: A guide to caching plugins

This session will cover how to use popular free plugins to speed up sites and optimize them for better performance. We’ll go over basics of caching and discuss the pitfalls and issues you have to watch out for especially when working with typical shared hosting services.

Speaker: Peter Baylies
Track: Users

SEO for content authors

Many people try to make SEO sound difficult but it’s really not when you have the right tools and an understanding of the fundamentals of SEO. In this session we’ll explore some popular tools and how to use them to manage your SEO, optimize your content and check your progress.

Speaker: Steve Mortiboy
Track: Users

Making Responsive Maps in WordPress

This presentation will cover using custom post types and metadata to create location markers on a map. Using the Google Maps API, zip codes can be automatically converted to coordinates. Then a GeoJSON object/list of all our locations can be generated for Leaflet.js to map.

Leaflet is an excellent choice for mapping because it’s highly customizable, doesn’t use Flash, and is responsive out of the box. We will provide a generic plugin to generate the custom post type, meta fields, GeoJSON file, and a map shortcode.

Speaker: Alicia Duffy
Track: Developers

How to Learn Web Design and Development Using WordPress

This talk identifies the primary web design and development skills including, HTML, CSS, JS, PHP and FTP. Throughout the talk, Zac identifies how you can start with minimal or no knowledge of these skills and begin to become proficient with these skills, moving up to becoming a real web designer if interested.

At the least attendees will know how they can easily start developing these skills in a safe and comfortable environment. The site is aimed at tech savy WordPress site owners and folks beginning in their WordPress development career.

Speaker: Zac Gordon
Track: Power Users

Tools that Add Drag & Drop Design in Any Theme

Come see how to use Drag & Drop tools and plugins to cutsomize the layout of your pages or posts. This can help you widgetize almost any area of your site no matter what theme you are using today!

We’ll run through demos of several of the leading plugins (all free) that can give you the ability to do this. This can be a great session for general users, power users, or even developers looking for a new tool for their tool belt.

Speaker: Brett Bumeter
Track: Power Users

Teach Me WordPress: How to Train Your Clients

What do your clients WANT to know about how to manage their website? and what do they NEED to know? Sharing too much information can overwhelm a client or worse, leading them to believe they can make changes and upgrades on their own. Then you get a frantic phone call at 2am demanding that the website be “fixed.”
This presentation will cover how to train your clients to be informed consumers so they can better appreciate the work product you have provided them, while setting up success for a long term working relationship.

Speaker: Heather Curtis
Track: Users

The Intimate Framework

There are a number of development frameworks on the market, but most of them are overly robust with more than you need, require a tremendous learning curve and can be quite limiting in how you can customize things.

Developing your own framework for your projects gives you an intimate knowledge of your work. It can save you tremendous time, help maximize your money and really allow you to customize what you need for your own business. In addition, you will learn so much more about the WordPress code and ecosystem making you much more of a WordPress expert!

We will explore where to start, how to organize and the power of child themes within your framework.

Speaker: Ed Nailor
Track: Developers

Unit Testing for Nearly Intermediate Developers

Writing unit tests can help you deploy cleaner, sturdier code. But configuring your WordPress development environment for unit testing can also mean confronting many unfamiliar tools at once, including the WordPress Test Suite and PHPUnit.

This session will help you install the test suite and write your first tests with the assistance of WP-CLI.

You’ll need some experience at the command line and with editing your dotfiles to get started. Our goal will be to start benefitting from unit testing without having to unravel its intricacies just yet.

Speaker: David Herrera
Track: Developers

BuddyPress: Social Networks with WordPress

This presentation will discuss how to use BuddyPress for a variety of projects and sites – beyond just adding a “social network” to your blog. I will explore how you can customize BuddyPress for custom projects, as well as drive engagement to your site with BuddyPress. We’ll also check out some great plugins and have a little show-and-tell of a BuddyPress project I’ve worked on. The goal is to have fun and explore what BuddyPress is and how it can be used. Although there will be some discussion of code, this is general enough in nature to appeal to those new to BuddyPress or even non-developers with somewhat of a technical background.

Speaker: Michael McNeill
Track: Power Users

Jailbreaking WordPress: That’s what you’re supposed to do

You know the short kid who grew up to be tall? You know, the dude everyone still sees as short even though he now towers above all of his friends? That kid has a perception problem and that’s exactly what WordPress is struggling with right now. We’d like to break down that barrier.

WordPress is open-source. It’s lightweight. It’s extensible. It’s got a solid community backing it. It’s been a valid CMS for years. But we still want to jailbreak the perception it’s just blogging software. Cause we’re tough like that.

In this session we’ll talk about the techniques you can use to morph WordPress into just about anything. We’ll look at how blogs have evolved, compare WordPress to other content management systems, explore the ubiquitousness of WordPress, and show examples of uncommon instances of WordPress.

Three key takeaways:

  • The death of WordPress as blog-only software
  • Tips for getting started with your next WordPress site
  • How to make WordPress work for your business

Speaker: Alisa Herr
Track: Power Users

Beyond SEO: Alternative methods of promoting your WordPress web store

In this talk we will be discussing and sharing ideas to market your WordPress-based e-commerce site in the real world. What happens after SEO? What can a small business do to promote itself other than through SEO. That’s the conversation I want to have with you. I will share ideas and processes that my clients and I have used, and will ask the audience to share theirs as well.

Speaker: Adam Sewell
Track: Users

Pushing WordPress further with Advanced Custom Fields

This presentation will be on how to push WordPress to another level with Elliot Condon’s brilliant “Advanced Custom Fields” (ACF) plugin. ACF is a free plugin with optional add-ons, some of which are paid, but all totally worth-it. I’ll go in-depth with some PHP code samples and build a couple of real-word examples so you can see the power of ACF, and how it can make the lives of both the developers and the clients using WordPress easier. Advanced Custom Fields allows the developer to build a custom UI in the backend for clients to enter content that wouldn’t normally “fit” into the default content editor. Then the developer can pull the information that he/she needs with ACF’s simple API within the loop or custom page template. ACF also has a couple of special fields, such as “repeater” and “flexible content” fields, as well as a location selector field.

I’ll show how ACF not only makes it easy to pull data that the developer specifically needs, but also how it impresses the client and provides the opportunity for the client to have a no-brainer way to add content to even the most complex of sites. I have a few sites that use ACF extensively that I’ll show off, so that the audience can see real-world working (and complex) examples of the plugin in action on every page. Drupal developers say that WordPress is “limited” and isn’t customizable enough for developer’s needs. With ACF, WordPress can retain and display data in a simple to use, easy to manage interface that makes sense for everyone.

Lastly, I’ll go over my approach for planning a WordPress site with a client, knowing about ACF’s abilities. Keeping Advanced Custom Fields in mind, the options developers can offer to their clients seem limitless!

Speaker: Julien Melissas
Track: Developers

WordPress E-commerce

What can you sell with WordPress and how do you do it? We will discuss using WordPress to sell digital products, physical products, memberships and subscriptions then compare different approaches to implementing an e-commerce site selling each of these types of products. We’ll cover practical information concerning the difference between payment gateways and merchant accounts and the various types of credit card processing fees to watch out for. Then we will review multiple WordPress plugins and extensions available for building e-commerce sites. Finally, we will address e-commerce security, PCI compliance, and solutions for developing a safe online store.

There is no code writing in this presentation and it is suitable for both developers and end users who want to know more about the world of e-commerce.

Speaker: Lee Blue
Track: Power Users

Sliders: The Good, The Bad and The Technical

Sliders are one of the most popular functional elements included with themes, or added via a plugin. Despite their widespread use, the value added to a site by having a slider has been increasingly questioned lately, with criticisms regarding click-through rate and overall site performance.

As a developer on version 2.0 of WooSlider, I’ve been head deep in sliders for the past 6 months. I’ll be using this experience in combination with research, articles and posts from others in the industry to look at what we as a community have been doing wrong, and right, in implementing sliders on sites. We’ll see where sliders can be most effective, how they can be effective and what makes, or doesn’t make, a slider a valuable addition to a site.

We’ll be looking at multiple free, paid, and bundled sliders to provide some insight at the wide variety of offerings, their performance, features, and ease-of-use in regards to creating a functional slider that will benefit the site and end-user alike.

Speaker: Tom Harrigan
Track: Developers

Can’t Beat Gravity: How to extend Gravity Forms to make clients happy and your life easier

I’m a big fan of the plugin Gravity Forms. It offers great functionality out of the box and the available add-ons allow me to provide a lot of awesome functionality out of the box. However, my favorite part of the tool is it’s documentation and the array of hooks and filters it provides allowing developers to easily extend and customize it’s functionality.

This presentation will walk through a basic example of how I extended the plugin to provide very specific functionality requested by a client. It will also review how I determine if Gravity Forms is the right tool for the job and the documentation it provides about its hooks and filters.

The final code will be shared online and I will have an example of the working tool.

Speaker: Will Haley
Track: Developers

Using WordPress to Power Music Sites

In today’s music industry, bands must be engaged with their fans online. While many social media sites and artist networks are available to bands, there is nothing like powering your own domain and interacting with your fans on your turf. From developing an email list and blogging, to publishing photo or video galleries and selling digital music direct to fans, bands can use WordPress to do all this and more. We’ll walk through how some artists are using WordPress and then discuss solutions to build your artist website with all the tools you need to engage fans, publish events, sell music and merchandise and more.

Speaker: Tony Zeoli
Track: Users

Extending Your WordPress Toolbelt with WP-CLI

WP-CLI takes managing and interfacing with WordPress to a new level. You can set up a new install, upgrade, import, export, and much more from an easy to use command line interface without the hassle and limitations of running in a browser session. Because many of the common tasks like installing or backing up can be done from the command line, they can be scripted much easier. Likewise, you can include commands to set up and configure a base install for development including which plugins and themes you want installed by default. Additionally, you can use it for long running tasks like imports or bulk processing posts. If you manage WordPress and would like to see how to simplify your day to day tasks, this talk is for you.

Speaker: Ryan Duff
Track: Developers

WordPress and Embedded Computing

Ever wished you could use your smart phone to unlock a door at the office or home? In this session, learn some ways WordPress can be integrated with embedded systems and how WordPress can be extended to cover all sorts of interesting scenarios. There will even be a working demo.

Speaker: Doug Cone
Track: Developers

Mind Your Own Business (website)!

WordPress recently celebrated its 10th anniversary. While it got it’s start as a web logging or blogging platform, it has grown to be much more. Because of it’s ease of use, WordPress is a great way for Small Businesses to create an website both quickly and inexpensively.

Session attendees will learn how to configure WordPress for use as a traditional website and identify the plugins that will make it an effective business tool.

This presentation will cover:

  • Installing WordPress and identifying a theme
  • Configuring WordPress for use as a website
  • What are the 5 Key Components of a Small Business Website
  • Adding Copy and Images
  • Capturing Leads and Building Your List
  • Keeping Your Site Secure
  • Brief Overview of Free and Paid Plugins for Enhancing Your Website

This session should help draw novice attendees that are considering WordPress for their own use, or for their company.

Speaker: Ray Mitchell
Track: Users

Branching Out with Multisite and BuddyPress

I will talk about what WordPress multisite and BuddyPress both are and are not. Reasons to use or not use one or both will be given, and limitations and caveats will be pointed out. Examples of real sites will be included. Then I will quickly show what’s needed to get up and running. I intend to help attendees make an informed decision on if multisite and/or BuddyPress would be a good fit for their needs, and if so, inspire them with the live examples given.

Speaker: Melodie Laylor
Track: Power Users

Duplicated & unique content to rank your WordPress pages with Google

With the myriad of Google updates related to unique, quality content, there are frequent misunderstandings related to the understanding of what “unique, quality content” means as well as how to get archive type pages within WordPress to rank well.

Out of the box any type of archive page within a WordPress site is not going to rank well no matter how great your posts, pages or post types are and regardless of the WordPress SEO plugin you have installed.

I will demystify on-page and technical SEO as it relates to content and explain the practical, actionable best practices to ranking archive pages on WordPress websites.

Speaker: Marty Martin
Track: Power Users

Tips for a Great Website Foundation

Learn specific strategies for how you can setup your WordPress installation now to prevent problems in the future.

Speaker: Corey Freeman
Track: Users

Developing Custom Themes for Clients

Should you develop custom themes for clients? When is it necessary? Why should you build custom themes for clients? Things that will be covered in this talk include, starting a theme from scratch, theme boilerplates, working with clients through the process, cost, performance, properly planning theme architecture around clients content, integrating with plugins and custom plugins, presentation vs functionality, updates and maintenance, shipping and installing the theme, training clients, populating site with content, and getting paid!!

Speaker: Steven Slack
Track: Developers

Power Content for Publishers

Of all the strategies for success with WordPress, perhaps the hardest one starts with the sentence “I’m going to create great content.”

But great content is the key to dominating search over a long period of time.

This workshop will delve into all the moving parts of great content including headlines, voice, keywords, pictures, plugins, syndication and SEO.

We’ll also discuss issues like frequency and length as well as thornier topics like dealing with controversy and establishing a comments policy.

Learn about forming a successful content strategy from one of the innovators of the WordPress publishing revolution. You will never look at content the same way again.

Speaker: Hal Goodtree
Track: Power Users