An Inside Look at OptimizePress

By Nathan Segal

In previous articles we've looked at different forms of ecommerce for the web. Many of these have dealt with shopping carts designed for multiple products. In this case we're going to look at a different approach, that of using sales letters as a way of selling products. And to be effective a sales letter is best focused on one product at a time. It is possible to do more than that, though you need an experienced copywriter on hand to make sure your message doesn't become diluted.

One product that covers all the above bases is OptimizePress, which is also a theme for WordPress. Here are some of the features of this theme: • Choose from over 10 tested designs • Build Your Blog • Simple Autoresponder Integration • Add Video To Your Pages In Seconds • Facebook Comments & Sharing • Social Sharing Built-in • Integrated SEO Features
To get started, you'll need to have WordPress installed on your server. In general, a recommended installation of WordPress is to use a service like Hostgator, which will allow you to install WordPress with cPanel. cPanel is also easy to use for making database backups. In my case, I use GoDaddy. The system isn't quite as user-friendly, especially when it comes to making database backups, though it's fine otherwise.

To get started, you'll need to download the OptimizePress file from the members area on OptimizePress.

Next, you need to launch WordPress.

In the Dashboard, this is where we'll load the theme. Note that the OptimizePress file is roughly 4.5MB. The next step is to make sure that your WordPress installation will allow you to load a file of that size. To find out, go to Media: Add New and look at the Maximum Upload. The Maximum Upload is 32MB so there's no problem. If this setting is too low, you'll get an error when you load OptimizPress. If this happens, you'll have to contact your hosting provider to give you a larger upload. If the installation returns an error, you'll need to use FTP to install the OptimzePress file.

Next, go to the Appearance header and click on Themes. In the Themes panel, click on the Install Themes tab and then click on the Upload heading, browse for the file and click on the Install Now button.

After a short while you'll get the message that theme installed successfully. Once it has, click on the Activate link.

This brings up the OptimizePress panel and our next step is to license this site. To do that, you need to go back to the License Your Sites tab on and copy and paste your site URL exactly as it appears in the browser. Once you click on Submit, this will generate a license key.

Next, you go back to the dashboard and paste in your license key. Once you've done so, you'll see the message in the screen shot above. One thing I've noticed about OptimizePress. If you notice that you're on the OptimizePress pane and it seems "stuck" on that page, click on Dashboard. This will take you out of OptimizePress and you'll be able to move around the site freely.

There are few more settings to take care before using OptimizePress. First. go to Settings: Permalinks. WordPress is set to the default setting which isn't SEO friendly. To solve that problem, choose enable the Custom Structure radio button and in the parameters box, enter /%postname%/. Once you've entered that, click on the Save Changes button.

Next, scroll down to OptimizePress: SEO Options. At the top of this section, note the Disable Optimize Press SEO Options. While OptimizePress has SEO built-in, you'll want to disable this if you use a plug-in like All-in-one SEO.

Below that, you'll want to enter the title of the blog, a description and keywords for the site.

The next section contains settings to set the structure for the pages and how aspects of the pages are displayed. Your options are: Page Title, Blog Post Title, Blog Author Pages Title, Blog Category Title, Blog Archive Title, Blog Tag Title, Search Page Title and 404 Page Title. To the right of each section are the short codes. You can customize these though I'm going to leave everything at the default settings. To activate the SEO options, click on the blue Save Changes button. Another thing that you might want to do is to create a static page, that is a page that will always come up in WordPress whenever the site is loaded. This could be a sales page or what's known as a "squeeze page." This is a short page that lists some highlights of the site along with some bullets, perhaps a video, and an opt-in box (this will be explained in more depth in upcoming articles). The static page won't come into play until you start building your WordPress site.

To get started, go to Settings: Reading. Enable the "A Static Page" radio button and choose a page to use as the home page. Note: Leave the Posts Page option at "Select." This function isn't used within OptimizePress. Next, click on the blue Save Changes button. That's it for all the configuration steps. In upcoming articles we'll look at how to create a squeeze page, sales page, install an autorsponder and more.

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