Throwback Thursday

With YoastCon in a few weeks, we decided to look back to what we posted five years ago and how that might have changed over the course of these five years. Let’s call it our Throwback Thursday post.

“When you put a picture from a “while” ago on your social media sites”
Urban Dictionary

Let’s start with that picture: back in 2010 was already online for a couple of years, but this is the snapshot of the exact date YoastCon will be held (27th of May), five years ago.

Where the windmill has disappeared and our current share of Dutch customers has been reduced to about four percent, the illustration of Joost has survived in these years, albeit in a restyled and improved version.

Content changes of our website

At that time, Joost was Yoast. Posts and other publications were inspired by the issues that ended up in his Inbox, that came along on Twitter or were shared by friends in the industry. At the time of writing, there’s four of us posting on a frequent basis. The May 2010 archive holds four posts. Last week alone we published six (although that included the plugin update information, of course).

It’s not just that. It became less personal, and even more informational. Last year, we made it our goal to emphasize Content SEO, not just by publishing our eBook on that subject, but also by a series of posts like:

What stayed the same is that we try to touch all bases of website optimization, from technical aspects to speed optimization, and from security to specific WordPress related subjects.

What did we post five years ago?

As mentioned above, we did five posts back then. Let’s take a closer look at these.

Facebook & (the lack of) Privacy

Joost closes this post with these words:

I hope they get this fixed. I don’t want to do away with Facebook, not just yet, I do want them to change their way of thinking about and dealing with privacy though, and not just now, but for all eternity.

This discussion has been alive over all five of these past years. Privacy is a major issue for Facebook and Facebook is definitely upping their game. Just this week, we learned that Facebook is making some major changes in their app, “a big change that gives users more power over the information they share with outside apps.” That’s a pretty huge thing, as we all know Facebook advertising is thriving on targeting ads right in your target audience – a marketing tool we use a lot ourselves at Yoast. And let’s not forget the EU is making it pretty hard for Facebook sometimes. Sorry for that :)

Let’s look at another article.

hReview and hProduct in Magento

Magento? Yes. Although our current posts mainly deal with WordPress related tips and tricks, we still do our share of Magento website reviews, for instance. Magento has a number of specific issues we address in our reviews, one of them being the use of rich snippets. This post hReview and hProduct in Magento would mainly be about adding data to your Magento product pages, if we would (and we should indeed) write about that today. The post followed a guest post by Frederick Townes called Google & Microformats: Drive More Traffic.

Rich snippets are more important than ever, as these simply make it way easier for Google and other search engines to find out what type of content is on a page. hReview is replaced in our recommendations by and hProduct by, as these last ones are constructed by the major search engines themselves. Jon said it right: “It’s all the same, only the names will change.” That’s almost like rickrolling, right :) Fact is that although the names are changed, these are still rich snippets and we highly recommend using them.

Back then, we also linked articles from others in quick roundup posts, much like the excellent newsletter our friend Brian Krogsgard sends us on a daily basis. If you are not subscribed to that newsletter yet and you’re serious about WordPress, be sure to subscribe.

Small updates from me & my friends

That post deals with our Salesforce plugin, a plugin we no longer develop. John Mueller was a guest on the WordPress Podcast. Almost a year ago, Joost himself was a guest on Dradcast. From host to guest, so to say. So that’s another thing that has changed.

In that post, Joost also mentions WordPress 3.0 beta 2 had been released. WordPress 3.0 was the first release to merge WordPress and WordPress MU. Nowadays we can’t imagine multisite not being in core, right. WordPress has matured over the last five years. And Yoast has been able to grow along with that. Having two plugins in the ‘most popular’ top 10 allows us to work closely with the core team now and then, and we value their improvements on WordPress.
We also contribute on a frequent basis, having a core day for our development team, for instance. During that day (once a month), all developers put their current projects aside and work on WordPress core instead. Yes, we benefit from the community by selling our premium WordPress plugins to them, but that also allows us to give back as well. This was also described in Joost’s talk at WordCamp EU 2014 about the Victory of the Commons.

NB. The fourth post of that month was a promotional post on “Outsource slicing & coding of your WordPress themes” that’s not currently online anymore.

5 years and counting

At YoastCon on the 27th of May, we’ll be celebrating 5 years of being an official business. I joined Joost at Yoast only three years ago and although we have learned a lot since then, we feel we’re not even halfway where we want to be.

The thing we’re very much looking forward to expand and grow is a project we named Yoast Academy (as announced in our newsletter about half a year ago). Triggered by the success of our eBooks and the fun we had and have thinking about YoastCon, this is a part of Yoast we’re really looking forward to work on even more. A quote from that newsletter:

Mind you, it’s far from finished, but we’re actually making a Yoast Academy for anyone who wants to learn more about SEO, Conversion Rate Optimization and usability.

This describes exactly our purpose of YoastCon. It’s for anyone that wants to learn about a broad spectrum of website optimization (usability, seo, business and security). We hope our speaker lineup reflects that as well. It would be awesome to meet you there!

This post first appeared as Throwback Thursday on Yoast. Whoopity Doo!