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The second is actually protecting your site visitors and that's where SSL / HTTPS is becoming  a huge deal. Google is going to start penalising sites that do not use SSL - some say as soon as October this year but the jury is out on exactly when.


How does one "convert" for http:// to https:// if we are going to be penalized?   :huh
The other aspect of it is whether this is a conversion that involves $.  :confused2

We all know that any site that has a way to access financial information (such as a site that sell  and you pay through the site) should have the S in https. But an author site normally is not selling directly. It's a multi-page ad, a getting-to-know-you. Same for blogs.

This is actually not off topic, but goes to the first question you raised, Liam. It's about what we need on/from our author sites.   :bow

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Kidlit Good News / Re: Sold early reader to Random House!
« Last post by Claudine Gueh on Today at 08:49 PM »
Congratulations!  :hurrah  Pigs seem to be the new dogs indeed. Looking forward to reading your series.
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Social Media / Re: What social media outlets are most important?
« Last post by Joie Foster on Today at 04:42 PM »
I think having a website and Twitter are super important. Instagram has been super useful for illustrators, but I've seen writers make use it as well. Snapchat is where all the kids are at. Good luck with that one, it's a learning curve for sure! I think a blog or vlog is also useful, but can be intimidating to start and difficult to promote (although Twitter, Snapchat, and Instagram are all useful for that).
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Social Media / Re: What social media outlets are most important?
« Last post by Marcia on Today at 11:49 AM »
I agree with what others have said about sticking to a couple of platforms you find most comfortable.  My blog is my website (depending on which tab you choose), so that narrows down my efforts. I also enjoy casual use of Twitter and Goodreads. I like to connect with teachers and librarians, but if/when kids find me online, too, great! Although I do some promoting on Facebook, I mostly keep it private.  There's only so much you can keep up, so I skip FB author page, Pinterest, Linkedin, Instagram, and the rest of them.
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Social Media / Re: What social media outlets are most important?
« Last post by mgmystery on Today at 09:58 AM »
kwlarson, thanks for the link to a great article!

olmue, you've made my day! I hope your kids are right - at least about teens not using it!

I have a website with a blog that I only update once or twice a month. Other than that, Pinterest is the only thing I like. So, two questions: Has anyone had much success with Pinterest? And can you suggest examples of blog content that would interest middle-grade readers or teacher, parents, and librarians interested in MG books?
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I've never had security issues either. And I don't find Wordpress to be all that complex. Perhaps the complexity is in the needs of the author.

Sounds like a great plan! I'm another one who is perfectly content using the most basic (and free) level of Wordpress. I don't use apps or plugins and after more than five years I've never run into any security issues, so that's got me curious.
Best of luck, Liam! I'm sure you'll find a market for your simplified solution.  :clover


Thanks for your comments Debbie, Marcia.

Website security is kind of like home insurance it's not a problem until something happens. There are two aspects to site security as well - preventing your site from being hacked is of course the primary one. The second is actually protecting your site visitors and that's where SSL / HTTPS is becoming  a huge deal. Google is going to start penalising sites that do not use SSL - some say as soon as October this year but the jury is out on exactly when.

https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/xygdxq/google-will-soon-shame-all-websites-that-are-unencrypted-chrome-https

Complexity like many other things is subjective/relative. If you are using a barebones Wordpress site with minimal plugins then you are much safer than sites that are overloaded with poor quality, free or cheapo plugins that can be a major security risk.

Anyways....I've gone way off topic. : )
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Contests and Challenges / Re: Chicken House Times Competition
« Last post by hairaplenty on Yesterday at 08:17 AM »
Oh, great! Thanks for the info.   :wc
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Social Media / Re: What social media outlets are most important?
« Last post by mrh on Yesterday at 07:13 AM »
I think FB has become a venue for adults who are keeping up with their friends and family. It's possible that when you publish, your agent, editor, or peers will suggest a FB author page. Some of my friends who recently sold books are making author pages. I don't know if it's that useful or if it's just that you should have one because people will look you up there. It's not that easy to get people to like your page, though.

I would suggest starting with a website and Twitter. Branch out from there when and if social media platforms evolve to the point where you can see it would be smart to get onto another one. If you write YA, where there are fewer gatekeepers between you and your audience, you might want Instagram. But yes, a lot of the adults whose attention you want to get are on Twitter.  Also, the contests and information you can find on Twitter can be career-changing.
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Social Media / Re: What social media outlets are most important?
« Last post by olmue on Yesterday at 05:58 AM »
My teenage kids say, " Nobody uses Facebook anymore." Actually, a lot of people use FB--but probably not so much your target audience. That would be more for the buyers in between you and them, I'd think. (Librarians, book sellers, etc.) All the different sites have their uses, but I'd probably tailor my response to whoever in the line of progression between you and the kid is most heavily using that resource.
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Social Media / Re: What social media outlets are most important?
« Last post by kwlarson on Yesterday at 05:35 AM »
I'm just chiming in to agree with Rebecca and Darshana!

You have to pick a couple of platforms that 1) you are comfortable with (or can learn to use) and 2) are places where your readers and/or influencers hang out. For example, if you write picture books, most elementary kids don't have Twitter accounts, but lots of school librarians do. They have a huge role in getting books into the hands of students, so I'd think Twitter would be a valuable platform for a PB author.

You might pick some of your favorite authors in your genre/category and study how they use social media.

Finally there also are some great tips in this post: https://thewritelife.com/how-successful-authors-use-social-media-to-sell-more-books/

Best of luck!

Kirsten

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