Presenter Brandon Kraft
Jetpack (here called JP) is built into WordPress.com (here called wp.com) sites. He briefly explained the difference between wp.com and wordpress.org (self hosted sites)
Some themes may not have the portfolio features (settings > enable feature if available), but all sites on WP.com include JP.
JP is available at jetpack.me/ or by installing it as a plugin on wordpress.org (self hosted) sites.
JP is modular – can turn off whatever features you don’t need. some of the ‘bloat’ is due to language translations needing to be included.
When installing JP, must have either a wp.com user account or a wp.com blog or site. The user account does not require a wp.com site. When logging in through jetpack, there is an option for user account only, not a site. JP will go to signup.wordpress.com/signup – can sign up for just a username, not a blog address. If created a wp.com accidentially, can set it to private (requires a login to access content).
WP.com currently hosts about 50 million sites. Per w3techs.com, (an independent site) which checks site roots, about 23% of the top 10 million sites are hosted by WordPress.
Developers can link to JP while working on a site, then can create a user account for the client after going live; site stats are not interrupted. Can disconnect then reconnect with another account and won’t use anything. stats persist. The only issue with site stats is if the site URL is changed, the historical stats may not be retained; contact JP support.
Site stats are recorded on WP.com server. Doing this helps avoid performance issues if high traffic. Google Analytics is great. Downside: can be complex, may be more than is needed for smaller sites. Google Analytics was introduced before JP stats.
Google vs. JP (WP) Analytics – WP is a lesser performance hit, since the stats are less complex and less detailed about the viewer (ex: wp – just shows the country of IP address, less info about the viewer’s browser, etc.) JP stats show at a glance how many people visit the site or specific posts or pages by day, the source (eg from facebook) and more, Jetpack is great, free and can be easier to understand than Google Analytics.
Stats are extendable – stats_get_csv() pulls from stats.wordpress.com/csv.php
When logged in, can see the stats sparklines at the top, above the dashboard.
Places to view the JP site stats
- the dashboard on the individual site (on WP.com or self hosted)
- wordpress.com/stats – shows all sites with the same logion – can drill down
Stats settings –
- which logged in users count? – can set levels that count as stats – may not want admins or editors.views to count as stats. JP doesn’t include IP blocking; they want to make it scalable
- which logged in users can view stats? can set.
- the smiley – eye candy only (bottom of the page) if it’s visible
Activating JP modules
The handiest modules are automatically activated. ones that don’t touch the back end(?) are automatically activated
Site stats –
The dashboard includes site stats as a graph. Click on the stats graph on the self-hosted site to drill down to more stats details on wp.com for that site (a surprising amount of detail!). It includes info on referers, top posts & pages, search engines & terms, clicks, extended stats for each post. Google changed what it reports so google’s section doesn’t show (‘unknown’), where viewers go after visiting your site.
On the wp.com stats page, one of the sources may be spam; can click the … and the link to spam sites to hide spam stats (wp.com still tracks, just won’t show it)
Automattic is including more site stats management through wp.com stats – multiple sites as long as they have the same account.
There was a lively discussion about JP features being limited on local sites.
Brandon discussed the JP Photon Image service. It works with dynamically resizing photos, and is great for for the tiled image gallery. Instead of uploading multiple sizes of an image, use JP’s Photon module to cache different sizes of images on wp.com; this can help speed up a site. Photon rewrites and redisplays/caches on wp.com (stored on your server). Automattic (wp.com) is opening data centers overseas to deliver cached images closer to visitor and transfer some of load to wp from your site.
Photon doesn’t work with video; use videopress $60/year, it currently has some limitations and is being being upgraded.
Ex-canonical sends original source with image to keep Google stats accuratedeveloper.wordpress.com – has photon image api; photon server is open source.
The terms of service require using JP to use photon, no technical requirements..
WP Super Cache plugin is built by Automattic, has full page caching. It’s automatically added by HostGator with the 1 click wp install. Turn it off during development. WP Super Cache plugin works well with photon.
What about conflicts w/ other plugins?
They will disable JP counterparts of other themes – ex, if Contact form 7 is used, the JP contact form is disabled. (He showed a lengthy code subroutine that listed numerous plugins that can override – disable – their JP counterparts or otherwise have to be considered). When conflicts are discovered, the JP developers either work to fix the JP issue or contact the other developer They want to be good neighbors.
Brandon mentioned that JP and /Yoast SEO both have a place for a validation code from Aoogle analytics.
A possible issue: Open Graph Tags (site header – when sharing a post on FaceBook, to associate a designated image, etc.). JP will add that automatically unless it detects another plugin that also does that. See codex article Always Use Open Graph with Jetpack.
What about backing up JP?
Use vault press – back up everything. (not free)
Automattic just brought plugin brute protect – block pwd guessing. will be in next release of JP. similar to limit login attempts in other plugins.
If you can’t activate a grayed out feature, the developer may have left it in dev mode.
What types of blogs/sites are not allowed on wp.com?
Spam, hate sites, porn, outside ads (need to do that through wp); they have some eCommerce options.
JP team is aware of accessibility issues and are working on them. an accessibility consultant is involved. Still room for improvement.
Thank you to both our presenter, Brandon Kraft and our Scribe:Donna Blumberg