Posts categorized "Features" Feed

Introducing Twitter Card: Large Image Summary

Ever notice how some content on Twitter includes a summary of a shared link, often times including an image or playable media? That's referred to as a Twitter Card, and it's a great way to draw readers to your content. Here at Typepad, we've been making improvements to how content is shared, and our latest addition has been to introduce the Large Image Summary card from the available options that Twitter offers.

The Large Image Summary card goes beyond the 140 characters of your average Twitter post. Instead of providing a plain text summary of your post content, it captures the attention of those quickly scrolling through their feed by utilizing an image from your post. 

Example of a Large Image Summary Twitter card
Example: Large Image Summary card of an Everything Typepad post

We're working on offering additional card options in the future, but we wanted this initial release to have the most impact.

Need an additional incentive to utilize the Twitter Card feature? Twitter offers statistics to track how the cards drive clicks and retweets, which is invaluable data to have when trying to boost the performance of your blog and social media presence. 

Here's how it works:

  • Visit Settings > Sharing, scroll to the Twitter Card section, and enter the Site and Creator handles for your Twitter accounts, preceded by the @ symbol (e.g. @typepad). This can be the same handle for both fields if you do not have a separate account for your blog.
  • Compose your blog post like usual, making sure to add an image if you would like it to be included in the summary on Twitter.

That's it! 

Tips:

  1. Make sure your post image is at least 600px wide so that the best quality is represented in your shared post
  2. If you share your post and an image isn't included, check the following:
    • Is the image directly inserted into Typepad or did you paste it in from a third-party site?
    • Does your post validate at Twitter's Card Validator? Sometimes your site may need to be whitelisted by Twitter before the expected display appears, so run a blog post URL through the validator to make sure all is working.

If you find that you're still experiencing an issue when your posts are shared, and everything is in place as instructed above, please reach out to us at Help > New Ticket for additional support. 


Open Links in a New Window in Your Link Typelist

We've added a new feature to Link Typelists that we think everyone will find exciting - the ability to open links in a new window with just one click!

If you want to have all of your Typelist links open in a new window, simply go to the Settings tab for the Typelist, check the box, and save your changes.

New_window

If you prefer to have only individual links open link in a new window - perhaps you've got a Typelist with a mixture of your own blog links and links to other sites - you can do this by going to the individual link, checking the box, and saving your changes.

New_window2

We hope you find this new feature useful!  As always, if you have any questions or would like to make your own suggestions for how to improve Typepad, the support team is only a click away!


New Google Analytics Upgrades

We released changes last week on the back end to our Google Analytics integration. It's going to make viewing your Typepad blog's stats over at Google even more exciting.

To start with, you can now log into Google Analytics and view real time visits on your blog.  This shows how many people are currently viewing the site, how long they've been on your page, where they're located in the world, and more.

Live_view

The Google Analytics statistics overall are improved in this new integration and you can find out a variety of information on your visitors.  You can learn even more about Google Analytics and how it works with your Typepad blog here.

Google Anayltics is a breeze to set up on your Typepad blog if you haven't already. Simply follow the steps here and you'll be up and running in no time.

As always, if you have any questions or need any help, open a help ticket and a member of our support team will be there to assist you!


New to Beta: Image Editor Upgrades Plus a New WordPress Import for Everyone

The new year is almost here, and while that means enjoying a little down time for some folks, we're still hard at work here at Typepad! Today we've got two new features to announce, one for our Beta Team members and one for all our users!

First of all, for our Beta Team, we've updated the image editor.  It now uses a newer version of the same program that you know and love, so you won't see many new changes, though there's now an option to add an overlay or even make a meme of your photo!  You will see better performance in general which is just another one of our updates to improve the Compose experience.

 

Meme_aviary

Finally, for our new subscribers coming in from WordPress, you can now import multiple authors in with your import.  Each author will have a guest account created for them and their posts will be assigned to that account.  This should make it easier for people with multiple authors to continue their blog in their new home with minimal fuss. You can learn more in our Knowledge Base.

We're working on even more exciting features to round out this year and to take us into the next one! (Hint: Ever wanted to have more password options on your blog?)  Feel free to leave a comment and let us know what you'd like to see Santa leave you under the Typepad tree!


New to Beta: Upgrading Authors

Adding guest authors (an Unlimited, Premium, Enterprise, and Business Class plans feature) has always been a straight-forward way to get your friends and associates to contribute to your blog.  Today, we're introducing ways to make this feature even fancier for all of our Beta Team members!

The biggest change is that now you have the ability to change the author of a post within Typepad.  You can do this either from the Compose page itself, using the Author drop down, or from the Posts tab and the "More actions..." button at the bottom.

Change_author
Authors: Now easy to change!

We then followed this up with creating both an author archive option and a feed for your author archives.  This means that there is now a dedicated page for each of your authors and also that your readers can now get updates when a particular author creates a post through their favorite feed reader option.  You can read more about feeds in our Knowledge Base.

To enable author archives and feeds, you'll first need to invite a new author at Settings > Authors.  Once you have multiple authors, you'll be able to check a box to enable author archives.  You can also elect to add each author's profile photo and one line bio to their archive page.

Author_archives
Enabling author archives simply by clicking a box!

To also enable the feed for your author archive, just go to Settings > Feeds, check the "Posts by Author" option, and save your changes.  You'll now see an RSS feed icon next to the header on the archive page.  We've also enabled this for category archives, so you'll now see this on category archive pages as well.

You can easily add a listing of your author archives (similar to category archives) to your sidebar by going to Design > Content and adding the "Author Archives" module.

We're currently working on improving authors even more, so make sure to join the Beta Team today so that you can try it out!


Out to Beta: A New Compose Experience

The most important thing that your blog does is create content through posts and Pages for you to share with your readers.  Without content, there's not much need for a blog, after all!

With that in mind, we're excited to announce that we've upgraded the Compose experience significantly and have just rolled it out to our Beta Team members.  The Compose editor has been updated and now sports this sleek new look:

New_compose
While it's a little different, all of the functions that you used previously are still there, but we've added some new features.

What's new

Let's take a look at some of the new features in the Compose section.

First, you now have the option to add tables to your posts easily.  You no longer have to use a third-party editor or compose your own HTML to do so.  With just the a click of your mouse, you can set how many rows and columns your table has, different colors for rows or columns, add borders, and more.  Check out the Table menu option to add one to your own posts.

You also can now click the Source Code option (the <> button) to add HTML to your posts without switching tabs, making it a little faster to work on your posts.  We've also added a new option to put special characters into your post without the need to find the proper HTML code to do so.  Click the Ω button (See how easy it was to add the omega symbol?) to give it a try.

The Restore Content option has also been upgraded and now saves various versions of your post.  This should help you recover your post in the event that you have a computer crash or lose connectivity and are unable to post.

The Compose page itself has also been made responsive so that it will scale and fit your browser better.  This should make it easier for you to create your posts on any size browser.  We've also widened the Compose editor so that you have more room to type and it's easier to see more of your post as you create it.

Beta Only... For Now

The new Compose experience is currently out in Beta, so only members of the Beta Team will see it today.  Once we get their feedback on improvements or anything that might need tweaking, we'll start pushing it out to the rest of Typepad in a staggered rollout.  If you want to try it out now, you can join the Beta Team by going to the Account tab and checking the box.

We think you'll like this newer editor and we can't wait to hear what you think about it!


New to Nimble: Theme Submissions & 3 Column Layout

Off the Grid
Going "Off the Grid" with the Nimble Design Lab

We've been hard at work on making the Nimble Design Lab even more useful and today we're excited to announce not one, but two huge new features!

The first is the ability to submit your own theme and have it appear as an option for other Typepad subscribers to use! If your theme is selected for inclusion, we'll apply a free month of credit to your Typepad account.  You'll also receive credit and a link to your website on the design's thumbnail page.

You can easily submit your blog's current design by clicking the orange "For Designers" button at the bottom of the left sidebar.  Once you do that, you'll see the details of the theme, a screenshot of it, and a form where you can enter the theme name, your name, and a link to your own site.

Theme_submit
Submitting Your Theme to Typepad

Nimble already comes loaded with seventeen pre-made designs by the Typepad Team plus the default Nimble Design Lab design that you can click and choose, including Off the Grid, the design in the screenshot at the top.  If you like one of the pre-made designs but aren't finding it the perfect fit, use the Nimble Design Lab to tweak it to perfection, making it just right for your blog.

At the same time, we're also releasing the 3 column layout for Nimble, with options to have the sidebars on both sides of the content column or on only one side.  This brings the total number of layouts available to a Nimble design to six.

Buildings & bridges
Buildings and Bridges: A New Pre-Made Theme in the New 3 Column Layout

The 3 Column option is available immediately for all users, but the Beta Team only will have access to the Theme Submission section.  If you want to try the Theme Submission option - and all the other Beta Nimble Design Lab features out now - you can do so simply by going to the Account tab, checking the box to join the Beta Team, and saving your changes.

You can read more about the Nimble Design Lab in our always helpful Knowledge Base.

We've got even more planned for Nimble, so we encourage everyone to keep watching Everything Typepad for more announcements.  We're also eager to hear what you think about Nimble, so leave any feedback, questions, or feature requests in the comments or send a reply to @Typepad on Twitter. You can also always reach out to us directly by opening a new ticket.


Individual Accounts Now Used for Bitly Links

Recently bit.ly made changes to how their system interacts with Typepad.  We took this opportunity to upgrade the experience for you, our subscribers!

If you weren't already familiar with bit.ly, they are a free service you can use to shorten the length of permalinks when sharing posts around the web. The shorter links will automatically be used when sharing to Twitter and Facebook. You can also use Bitly to track traffic to every post on your blog.

What this change means to you, is that now you can easily integrate your own personal bit.ly account into Typepad, allowing you to view your blog's bit.ly links within your own bit.ly account.  Previously these links were housed within Typepad's own bit.ly account.  This change means that you can see all of your links in one place, including the ones you shared through Typepad.

To use your own bit.ly account, simply go to Settings > Add-Ons and scroll to the bottom of the page.  You'll see a section for bit.ly.  Click on their orange logo and you'll be redirected to their site.  Approve the connection and you're done!

image from help-orig.typepad.com

Now, when you go to Overview and click the bit.ly listed under "Recent Social Media Traffic," the links listed there will allow you to view additional information on their clicks under your own bit.ly account. Just click a link to get more detailed stats.  Any links created previously will still retain their stats.

Don't have a bit.ly account yet?  You can register for free here.

We have more information on this topic in our helpful Knowledge Base.

Have any questions or need help with something?  Assistance is just a click away!


Updates to Facebook, Including Integrated Facebook Page Sharing

Facebook's current API is being retired, so as of today, Typepad is using its most current version.

This will be a seamless change for most of you, so you don't need to worry about anything.  However, if you experienced an issue where you received a message about your account being invalid, we think the new changes should stop this from occurring.  If you continue to see this, please open a help ticket.

Most importantly, though, we now have integrated Facebook Page sharing!

If you've posted to your fan or business Facebook Page through Typepad before, you know that this meant using a third-party platform like IFTTT or RSS Graffiti.  Now, you can do this all through Typepad!

To get started, go to Settings > Sharing and click the "Connect your blog to Facebook" link.  Once you do that, you'll see the following:

Fbconnect1

Click the Connect button and you'll see a blue Like box that you need to check.  (If this button already shows a check mark, click the check mark to uncheck the button.)  Once you do that, this will initiate the integration process.  You can select an existing Page you manage from the drop down that loads or create a new Page on Facebook.

After you've completed this process, you can now choose to always publish your posts to Facebook automatically.  This means that any posts sent by a mobile device, the Compose editor, or e-mail will show up on your Facebook Page without you needing to do anything else.  If you would prefer to choose on a post-by-post basis whether to share it or not, leave this box unchecked.

Now when you Compose a new post, you'll see the option to share your post to your Page!

Fbshare

We hope you're as excited as we are about sharing your posts to your Facebook Page!


New to Nimble: Borders for Posts and Sidebar & Miscellaneous Fixes

In case you missed all the hullabaloo about Nimble Design Lab, we're continuing to improve it, based not only on our own ideas for features, but also on all the feedback that we've been receiving from our Beta Team members.  Keep the feedback coming!  We love making Nimble work how YOU want it to.

The first thing we want to show off is that it's now incredibly easy to add borders to your posts and sidebars.  To do this, just look for the Border option within each section.  Click it and the options section will slide into view.  You can then click the "Change" link to see the various looks you can apply to the border like changing its color, style, and width:

Border_options

These options allow you to make some great design choices for your blog.  Check out how the use of a solid border on one side and the double border on the other really sets to the two sides apart on this blog:

Border_shot
Isn't that great?  Borders are just one more tool you can utilize to make your blog stand out from the crowd.

Next, we wanted to cover some of the miscellaneous things we've been fixing as part of our Nimble housekeeping.

Previously you may have noticed that some widgets, like the Twitter or Facebook ones, would overlap within the sidebar.  We've resolved this issue and it shouldn't happen any longer.  If you do see this occurring, though, please open a help ticket so we can help get you straightened out.

There had also been a conflict with the ShareThis widget, but it's also been resolved and you can add it to your blog at Design > Content.  Check out the Knowledge Base for more information on recommended widgets.

Finally, you should see general improvements in icons and margins on blogs.

We hope you're loving Nimble just as much as we're loving working on it!  If you're using Nimble on your blog, leave a comment with a link or send us a Tweet.  Maybe your blog will get featured!  Keep working on those designs and maybe soon, you'll see your own design in Typepad!  (New feature spolier alert!)