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HOW TO
do training and support for
WordPress users
WordPress Day, NTC 2015
Jason King
Twitter: @jasoncsking
Jason King
Freelance WordPress developer
who works with UK and Australian
non-profits
NetSquared London co-organiser
Twitt...
if WordPress is so easy to use, why
bother to train users?
Yes, but easy does not = no effort
Much easier than learning code
A CMS has to balance ease-of-use with flexibility
WordPr...
A beautiful, accessible website can be spoilt by careless
content editing
There's a lot of outdated information about usin...
who needs to be
trained?
understand the organisation
Who are your trainees?
What is their role in the non-profit?
What responsibility do they have ...
trickle down training
When you teach one person, then they teach the others.
Useful for when there are multiple content ed...
different user roles have different
training needs
●
Contributor
●
Author
●
Editor
●
Admin
Do these WordPress roles corres...
what do different users
need to learn?
editor role needs to learn
How to login
The WordPress dashboard
Creating and editing posts and pages
Basic accessibility (...
should you teach editors how to
Write simple html? If so, which tags?
Change menus? By default this is restricted to Admin...
the Admin role needs to learn
Widgets
Menus
Managing users
Approving comments
Gravity Forms and other plugins are admin on...
should you teach Admins how to
Upgrade WordPress ?
Upgrade plugins ?
Install and change themes ?
Make backups ?
Use the th...
things that confuse users
Difference between a post and a page
Images (alt text, aligning, featured images, galleries)
Upl...
choose appropriate
training methods
how do you train your WordPress clients?
I suggest books, blogs etc 2 %
I use the WordPress codex 2 %
I use a premium vide...
Can be read in trainee’s own time ✔
The most up-to-date resource ✔
Likely to overwhelm and confuse them X
the codex: new t...
Can be read in trainee’s own time ✔
Plenty of titles available ✔
Not aimed primarily at content editors X
Can be overly fo...
Can be rewatched in trainee’s own time ✔
May not match their own website’s features X
wp101.com 45 videos, one-off payment...
walkthroughs
Trainee can ask questions ✔
Can be tailored to specific website ✔
Good to meet client face-to-face ✔
Can be d...
tips for a good walkthrough
●
Ideally teach more than one person at a time
●
Don't huddle a group round a laptop - use a p...
write your own manual
Can be read at user’s own pace ✔
Relevant to user's own website ✔
Written for their tech level ✔
Can...
how I train WordPress users
1. Write a manual on Google Drive, share it and allow
comments. It has links to various tutori...
how long should a
training session take?
For an individual or small group session, 60 -
90 minutes should suffice. After 90 minutes the
brain is full. Some brains ...
before you start the
training
reassure them
You can’t break the website
(not necessarily true, but very reassuring)
Pages you delete can be retrieved fr...
teach content editing,
not just WordPress
writing for the web
Can the person with responsibility for content editing spell,
punctuate and write convincingly? If not...
inverted pyramid style of writing
News of Abraham Lincoln's death in 1865 was one of the
first reported uses of the Invert...
what's a style guide?
When there are multiple content editors, a style guide helps
ensure consistency. It lists preferred ...
follow branding guidelines
The non-profit may have a branding guide, outlining the
correct use of fonts, colours, logo(s) ...
apart from WordPress,
what else website
related do non-profits
need to be trained in?
it’s not just the website
Promoting a website
SEO
Social media
Google Analytics
Writing persuasively
Telling a story … and...
make WordPress
simpler to use, so
there’s less to teach
users
tips for WordPress developers
These code snippets go in the
functions.php file in your WordPress theme.
No plugins require...
dictate which headings they can use
http://calliaweb.co.uk/modify-tinymce-editor/
reorganise the post editor toolbar
www.kevinleary.net/customizing-tinymce-
wysiwyg-editor-wordpress/
use your site’s CSS in the editor
http://codex.wordpress.org/Function_Reference
/add_editor_style
a hidden button: Style Formats
http://codex.wordpress.org/TinyMCE_Custom_
Styles
default Screen Options
Because most new users don’t even notice it’s there.
https://www.vanpattenmedia.com/2014/code-snipp...
disable the theme & plugin editors
This goes in your
wp-config.php file:
define('DISALLOW_FILE_EDIT',true);
DO IT ASAP!
support
support / maintenance contract
Could be annual, six monthly or quarterly – needs to be
budgeted for.
Could include:
●
Upgr...
doing support well
Often it's sufficient to simply write a sentence plus a link to
a video or tutorial on the codex
Suppor...
Jason King
Freelance WordPress developer
who works with UK and Australian
non-profits
NetSquared London co-organiser
Twitt...
How to do training and support for WordPress users - WordPress Day at NTC, Austin 2015
How to do training and support for WordPress users - WordPress Day at NTC, Austin 2015
How to do training and support for WordPress users - WordPress Day at NTC, Austin 2015
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How to do training and support for WordPress users - WordPress Day at NTC, Austin 2015

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How to to training and support for WordPress users. A presentation at WordPress Day of the Nonprofit Technology Conference in Austin, Texas 2015.

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How to do training and support for WordPress users - WordPress Day at NTC, Austin 2015

  1. 1. HOW TO do training and support for WordPress users WordPress Day, NTC 2015 Jason King Twitter: @jasoncsking
  2. 2. Jason King Freelance WordPress developer who works with UK and Australian non-profits NetSquared London co-organiser Twitter @jasoncsking My clients: Ectopic Pregnancy Trust, Economic Security 4 Women, Law for Life, Advice Services Alliance, Breast Cancer Care, Social Research Unit, Brent Advice Matters, Worshipful Company of Turners, Harlington Hospice, And Other Stories, Social Impact Analysts Association
  3. 3. if WordPress is so easy to use, why bother to train users?
  4. 4. Yes, but easy does not = no effort Much easier than learning code A CMS has to balance ease-of-use with flexibility WordPress is not always as intuitive as it could be More plugins installed = more to learn A well-built theme might have customised the dashboard is WordPress easy to learn?
  5. 5. A beautiful, accessible website can be spoilt by careless content editing There's a lot of outdated information about using WordPress that users can pick up online Prevent bad habits by teaching good practice A badly built theme can make it harder for users WordPress can be misused
  6. 6. who needs to be trained?
  7. 7. understand the organisation Who are your trainees? What is their role in the non-profit? What responsibility do they have for the website? How techie are they? Many non-profit workers are not confident with technology
  8. 8. trickle down training When you teach one person, then they teach the others. Useful for when there are multiple content editors ✔ Especially if they can't all make a training session ✔ Can reinforce the wrong as well as the right ways X Not everyone is a good trainer X
  9. 9. different user roles have different training needs ● Contributor ● Author ● Editor ● Admin Do these WordPress roles correspond to the users' website responsibilities?
  10. 10. what do different users need to learn?
  11. 11. editor role needs to learn How to login The WordPress dashboard Creating and editing posts and pages Basic accessibility (but don't make them read WCAG) Categories and tags The Media Library
  12. 12. should you teach editors how to Write simple html? If so, which tags? Change menus? By default this is restricted to Admin role Use widgets? Again, restricted to Admins
  13. 13. the Admin role needs to learn Widgets Menus Managing users Approving comments Gravity Forms and other plugins are admin only by default
  14. 14. should you teach Admins how to Upgrade WordPress ? Upgrade plugins ? Install and change themes ? Make backups ? Use the theme / plugin editor ?! Is knowledge dangerous or empowering?
  15. 15. things that confuse users Difference between a post and a page Images (alt text, aligning, featured images, galleries) Uploading and linking to PDF documents How to use subheadings (h2, h3 etc) Excerpts How the home page is edited
  16. 16. choose appropriate training methods
  17. 17. how do you train your WordPress clients? I suggest books, blogs etc 2 % I use the WordPress codex 2 % I use a premium video library 8 % Training? What training? 14 % I walk them through the dashboard 74 % http://code.tutsplus.com/articles/readers-poll-how-do- you-train-your-clients--wp-21428 poll of 510 developers:
  18. 18. Can be read in trainee’s own time ✔ The most up-to-date resource ✔ Likely to overwhelm and confuse them X the codex: new to WordPress section http://codex.wordpress.org/
  19. 19. Can be read in trainee’s own time ✔ Plenty of titles available ✔ Not aimed primarily at content editors X Can be overly focused on blogging X Books get outdated fast X books
  20. 20. Can be rewatched in trainee’s own time ✔ May not match their own website’s features X wp101.com 45 videos, one-off payment, accessible via dashboard Lynda.com 64 courses, 1500 videos, most aimed at developers sidekick.pro 190 videos PLUS you can create custom walkthroughs wordpress.tv Many free videos for content editors in How To section premium video tutorials
  21. 21. walkthroughs Trainee can ask questions ✔ Can be tailored to specific website ✔ Good to meet client face-to-face ✔ Can be done using remote tools ✔ Useful for ironing out bugs ✔ Likely to be forgotten within days X
  22. 22. tips for a good walkthrough ● Ideally teach more than one person at a time ● Don't huddle a group round a laptop - use a projector ● Insist on no interruptions ● Use actual real-life content as examples ● Discuss where it should be published (page or post etc) ● Let trainees have a go themselves ● Trainees should start doing content editing asap
  23. 23. write your own manual Can be read at user’s own pace ✔ Relevant to user's own website ✔ Written for their tech level ✔ Can link to video and other tutorials ✔ Time consuming (=costly) to write X Unlikely to answer every question X
  24. 24. how I train WordPress users 1. Write a manual on Google Drive, share it and allow comments. It has links to various tutorials including videos. 2. Individual or small group walkthrough of WordPress 3. Ongoing email/phone support as part of annual contract 4. Catch-up meeting two months after launch, which checks they're doing it right and also looks at SEO
  25. 25. how long should a training session take?
  26. 26. For an individual or small group session, 60 - 90 minutes should suffice. After 90 minutes the brain is full. Some brains fill up quicker than others. Consider a follow-up training session, perhaps combining it with SEO training or a content review meeting.
  27. 27. before you start the training
  28. 28. reassure them You can’t break the website (not necessarily true, but very reassuring) Pages you delete can be retrieved from the Bin Previous versions of pages can be restored The website gets backed up daily/weekly WordPress is easy to use (mostly true)
  29. 29. teach content editing, not just WordPress
  30. 30. writing for the web Can the person with responsibility for content editing spell, punctuate and write convincingly? If not, good luck! Be concise. Use the language (and jargon) your audience uses. Chunk your content. Use short sentences and paragraphs. Use clear subheadings. Use calls to action. Etc. http://www.usability.gov/how-to-and-tools/ methods/writing-for-the-web.html
  31. 31. inverted pyramid style of writing News of Abraham Lincoln's death in 1865 was one of the first reported uses of the Inverted Pyramid. Write the conclusion first. The first paragraphs should say who, what, where, when, why and how. www.skilledup.com/articles/ about-the-inverted-pyramid-writing-style/
  32. 32. what's a style guide? When there are multiple content editors, a style guide helps ensure consistency. It lists preferred terminology and gives guidance on the organisational writing style, usually giving examples. Some style guides are freely available online: www.theguardian.com/guardian-observer-style-guide-a
  33. 33. follow branding guidelines The non-profit may have a branding guide, outlining the correct use of fonts, colours, logo(s) and images in print and on the web. Trainee content editors should be made aware of it. Sometimes there's a single guide for branding and style.
  34. 34. apart from WordPress, what else website related do non-profits need to be trained in?
  35. 35. it’s not just the website Promoting a website SEO Social media Google Analytics Writing persuasively Telling a story … and so much more.
  36. 36. make WordPress simpler to use, so there’s less to teach users
  37. 37. tips for WordPress developers These code snippets go in the functions.php file in your WordPress theme. No plugins required.
  38. 38. dictate which headings they can use http://calliaweb.co.uk/modify-tinymce-editor/
  39. 39. reorganise the post editor toolbar www.kevinleary.net/customizing-tinymce- wysiwyg-editor-wordpress/
  40. 40. use your site’s CSS in the editor http://codex.wordpress.org/Function_Reference /add_editor_style
  41. 41. a hidden button: Style Formats http://codex.wordpress.org/TinyMCE_Custom_ Styles
  42. 42. default Screen Options Because most new users don’t even notice it’s there. https://www.vanpattenmedia.com/2014/code-snippet- hide-post-meta-boxes-wordpress
  43. 43. disable the theme & plugin editors This goes in your wp-config.php file: define('DISALLOW_FILE_EDIT',true); DO IT ASAP!
  44. 44. support
  45. 45. support / maintenance contract Could be annual, six monthly or quarterly – needs to be budgeted for. Could include: ● Upgrades to WordPress and plugins ● Automated weekly backups ● Fixing bugs and restoring from a hack ● Email and phone support ● Minor changes but NOT major new features
  46. 46. doing support well Often it's sufficient to simply write a sentence plus a link to a video or tutorial on the codex Support is not an alternative to a training session Be pro-active, have a routine: login in weekly to check for updates and do backups, and take a quick look at the site. Set up monthly Google Analytics email reports because clients forget to check stats.
  47. 47. Jason King Freelance WordPress developer who works with UK and Australian non-profits NetSquared London co-organiser Twitter: jasoncsking

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