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Features are good, What about ‘Security’?

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fatcow-review

What is FatCow Hosting?

FatCow is a name you may not have come across in your journey to find the right web hosting service.

It’s a pretty small company—though it was founded in 1998 and has therefore been around as long as some of the best in the biz, FatCow’s name hasn’t exerted as much pull as its other, larger, competitors.

And yet, FatCow has managed to stay afloat in a very competitive area of online business for two decades—so clearly, it’s not too shabby despite its size.

And this leads us to wonder—what is up with FatCow?

Is it staying alive by luck, or is it a hidden gem in the hosting world?

In this review, I’ll take a look at FatCow and discuss my experience using it.

I’m happy to report that this underdog is a solid hosting company, but there are a few caveats to look out for.

So—let’s get to it!

FatCow: The Cons

FatCow is one of the more nuanced hosting companies that I’ve reviewed.

I like it, or at least I want to, especially because it’s a relatively small contender in a large pool of hosting companies.

However, there are a few things that FatCow doesn’t do the most competitively, and it’s my job to highlight those flaws.

So let’s get it over with quickly.

First off, the price: FatCow focuses on simplicity, but the result is that its shared web hosting package is a bit pricey.

It’s inexpensive for its first term, relative to the features you get, but once it renews, it’s quite costly.

fatcome renewal plans

Moreover, it’s just one package—you can’t opt for a cheaper package with fewer features, just the one package that may be above your ideal price point.

Other competitors certainly offer shared web hosting packages for lower prices and similar amounts of features, which makes this unfortunate.

Another downside is FatCow’s customer support: I found their knowledge base to be a little shoddy.

A redundant link here, a how-to article that uses another hosting company’s video there, and so on…all things considered, their customer support isn’t terrible, but far from the most robust, I’ve seen.

The good news is that’s about it for FatCow’s flaws.

The pricing structure is a little too simple for shared web hosting, and a bit expensive for shared web hosting depending on what you’re after.

Its on-site documentation could be revamped.

Other than that, it’s decent—so let’s get into that fun part!

FatCow: The Pros

Thankfully, FatCow does have some good things going for it. The first thing I want to look at is the simplicity of the pricing structure.

Yes, if you want to get shared web hosting, you might find FatCow’s pricing a little too restrictive to get something tailored for your needs, especially if you’re trying to save money.

However, if you want WordPress, VPS, or dedicated hosting—well, FatCow’s structure actually makes things very easy.

WordPress hosting has two tiers that are both well-featured and not significantly priced apart from one another.

Dedicated and VPS hosting have the same features, and getting a different package really means getting more server accommodations than tools.

It’s very streamlined and makes it hassle-free to get those options.

The other thing is also related to its shared web hosting package: if you want a cheap option that doesn’t need to have every feature, FatCow isn’t the place for you.

But if you’d get the highest tier of shared hosting for a heavier toolkit on another platform, then FatCow’s price is actually not so inexpensive.

Shared hosting tools for fatcow

If you want all those tools and accommodations, it’s not overpriced.

It’s overall a well-featured platform, so I give them credit for that.

Moreover, their security is pretty solid. It’s not the best—I do think they might be able to employ a harder security infrastructure and more cyber-defenses—but I appreciate their on-site transparency.

Finally, their simplicity can drag them down with shared hosting prices and customer support, but overall, they are a very easy to use service. It’s streamlined: as mentioned, the pricing is simple, but so is the actual software itself.

It certainly has an easy learning curve and a pleasant user interface.

Combining that with a good set of features is a worthy accomplishment that every hosting company has to hit, and I appreciate FatCow’s success.

Now, let’s look into pricing a little more.

FatCow: Pricing

Something I like a lot about Fatcow is the simplicity of its pricing.

Everything is extremely straightforward; you don’t need to dig around too long to figure out how many services you can buy.

So let’s keep that simplicity going, eh?

First off we have the option most of you will be looking at: shared web hosting, which FatCow calls “The Original FatCow Plan.”

fatcow plans

The Original FatCow starts at $49 a year—this is a special introductory rate that will increase after your first term—which evens out to roughly $4.08 per month.

The renewal prices are $14.95 a month for a year-long term, $13.95 for a 2-year term, and $12.95 for a 3-year term. Frankly, these are very pricey—I had to double check to make sure it wasn’t for a different hosting package.

But nope, that’s for its standard, shared web hosting service. Of which, by the way, there is only one option—it’s not a tiered product from which you can choose packages with fewer features for a lower price.

WordPress hosting, a staple hosting product for most services, starts at $3.75 a month and ends at $6.95 a month.

fatcow wprdpress hosting

Yes, there are only two tiers, WordPress Starter, and WordPress Essential—but hey, they’re decently priced and WordPress Essential seems to be fully featured.

Virtual Private Servers start with a Basic plan, for $19.99 per month for the first term ($24.99 afterward), and end with Optimum at $79.99 ($99.99 regularly).

fatcow vps plans

For those looking at heavy-duty options, dedicated hosting with FatCow starts at $119.99 a month and ends at $191.99.FatCow Dedicated hosting plan

Of course, these are discounted for the first terms; once that period is over, you’ll pay $149.99 for the Startup (first tier) package and $239.99 for the Enterprise (third tier) package.

Overall, WordPress hosting is pretty cheap on FatCow, and VPS and Dedicated server hosting with FatCow is also well-priced.

The only issue is shared web hosting: it’s $49 for the first year isn’t too overpriced, but it’s still much more expensive at over $4 a month than what many other leading providers offer—which is more in the $2-3 range.

When you renew it, however, the price rises dramatically. If you commit for three years, you still pay $12.95 a month. To put things in perspective: GoDaddy and Bluehost renew at $7.99 a month, and that’s for a year-long package.

So overall, I would say FatCow’s shared web hosting option is overpriced, but its other options are very fair and still worth considering.

So let’s talk about features—the thing that will really determine how well-priced a package is!

FatCow: Features

Usually we focus on the features for shared web hosting, because it’s typically the most sought-after hosting option.

As FatCow’s shared web hosting is overpriced, however, we’ll try to talk a little more about every other service they offer.

Shared hosting has a decent set of features—decent insofar as it might mediate the price a bit.

Of course, there is the actual hosting itself, as well as an easy site-builder, application installation wizards, and online store tools, email, SEO and marketing tools, and customer support.

It also comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee, a free domain name, unlimited mailboxes, unlimited disk space, and no caps on bandwidth.

shared hosting features at Fatcow

It’s easy to view these as generous—however, you could also get these features for simply upgrading to a second or third-tier shared hosting package on a different platform.

This is really only worth it for your first term of use; after the renewal causes the price to rise, you might as well go elsewhere.

The WordPress hosting packages offer free domain registration, unlimited disk space, and unlimited bandwidth as well. More interestingly, they offer free search engine marketing credits, which is pretty neat for the Starter package’s low price.

The features for VPS hosting are more or less the same between tiers: the increase in price basically accounts for an increased number of cores, RAM, storage, and bandwidth. You can calculate the price yourself here.

The same is true for Dedicated hosting plans: what increases really is capacity, not tools, between price points.

Overall, I would say dedicated and VPS hosting plans with Fatcow are about as fully-featured as on any other platform, and competitively priced (or at least normally priced).

WordPress hosting seems to be a pretty good deal with FatCow, regardless of which tier you get, although it’s not necessarily the best deal for WordPress hosting out there.

wp features

Shared web hosting has a pretty good set of features—the only problem is it’s a bit pricey.

You might be getting a good deal for that first year, paying around $4 a month for what could be twice that on another platform, but after your first term, the renewal price is so significant that I’m not sure it’s worth it.

That being said, it sounds like FatCow doesn’t really struggle with having the right amount of tools or having a good amount of the right tools—just price.

How does being able to juggle these features pan out for the user?

Let’s find out.

See full plans here…

Ease of Use and User Control

Having a combination of ease of use and flexibility is pretty essential. FatCow markets itself as a platform for small-to-medium businesses.

control panel

One would, therefore, expect FatCow to offer enough power to satisfy business needs, but a service that is streamlined and simple, to make things easy and efficient.

This is how every popular hosting company markets itself, but FatCow specifically names simplicity as one of the company’s founding premises.

The good news is that FatCow does indeed succeed in this regard. You might have seen it a little bit in the pricing and features sections: even when you’re looking at what to buy, there isn’t really an overwhelming amount of choices.

Shared hosting has one package with every feature. WordPress hosting has only two packages. For VPS and dedicated server hosting, the tools you get are the same—the only thing you pay more for is extra accommodations and space.

Even if you’ve visited their site, everything is extremely simple and easy to navigate. The same is true for the site once you’ve logged in. You won’t need to dig around much for anything.

All website builders are easy to use—that’s their goal, after all—but FatCow’s is no exception. This video, from their help page, is a good demonstration.

Managing your account, email, domains, and so on, are about as easy as that website builder. As a matter of fact, the website builder is probably one of the more complicated things you’ll have to deal with.

All things considered, FatCow does great with ease of use, without sacrificing your ability to control your account or site.

Customer Support

Something that adds to FatCow’s ease of use factor is its solid customer support. As with most platforms, FatCow offers educational and factual material on-site for searching, browsing, or onboarding.

In addition, it has customer service representatives available to answer questions by live chat, phone, or ticket/email. I tested out their live chat as a guest, to see what any anonymous visitor could get.

Note: the times in the bottom left corner of the screen are accurate within a minute of the most recent message being sent.chat1

It took a couple of minutes, but I did get a response.

chat2

This is certainly not the type of question a customer service representative normally gets. I still got a response—even if it could have been worded better.

chat 3

I had to clarify, but it was overall helpful. Note that the representative says the video on their help page is “almost” the same as their website builder.

chat 4

In my message, however, I asked if the website builder in the video/that iPage uses is the same as FatCow’s—not similar, but same.

The FatCow representative then affirmed my answer, which leaves me wondering—is it the same builder, or similar?

Now, I understand I’m being pretty anal about a very trivial and unorthodox matter. The representative was overall helpful, understood the question, and tried their best to answer.

And before you ask: yes, the website builder they use is pretty much the same as iPage’s.

The larger question is about their knowledge base.

Why couldn’t they use a video of their own builder, and put it on a FatCow YouTube channel?

Are they so strained for resources that they must use other hosting platform’s screengrabs and pass it off as their own?

Now aside from that, the knowledge base is good. It’s simple and straight to the point.

One last grievance is their contact page, which has two links: one to their knowledge base, and another to their user guides. Both links redirect to the same help page/knowledge base.

I get this seems like minor stuff by itself, but when it all comes together, their on-site documentation looks a little shoddy; hasty, to say the least.

I can’t read every article they have on-site, and neither can you—so how much of it is actually helpful and specific to the FatCow platform?

Is any of it misleading, outdated, or copied from other platforms?

It’s tough to say, but I’m left a bit skeptical of FatCow’s customer support for these reasons.

FatCow’s a small company though, and maybe we can forgive them a bit.

Overall, their knowledge base seems comprehensive, and their representatives respond in a timely manner. That they offer 24/7 phone support at their size is an added bonus.

I just don’t think it’s the best customer support I’ve seen.

But if the security is good, you won’t really need to deal with customer support too much—so let’s take a look at that!

Security

You don’t need me to tell you that security is essential. As FatCow is a smaller service, it’s easy to wonder if maybe they pinch pennies on security, or fail to be transparent.

This is not the case. FatCow is more transparent about its security than many other big names in the hosting world, which is quite comforting.

As a matter of fact, this page is dedicated to describing FatCow’s servers and their security. They only have two servers, and both in the Boston area—proof they really are a small contender—but those servers seem well-guarded.

Of particular interest, they offer a “pooled server environment.” This is a nontraditional structure that basically lets the first available machine serve a customer’s pages, giving faster loading times.

security

If one machine crashes, another unit will be clustered nearby to take over immediately.

So far, this makes FatCow’s security look pretty good.

Now, I still think they could have a little more infrastructure in place to protect from hackers and cyber attacks, but given that they only have two servers in the same area, it’s more understandable.

In my experience, the uptime has been pretty good. Aside from a few minutes during the off month here or there—nothing unusual even for the bigger platforms—I’ve had reliable uptime.

I wouldn’t say FatCow has the best security I’ve seen, but it’s very solid for its size. I am sure FatCow is reliable enough for anyone worrying about their uptime or information.

Do I Recommend FatCow?

In conclusion, FatCow presents a few drawbacks and quite a few benefits—all of which likely stems from its small size and/or its focus on simplification.

On one hand, pricing is simple in a way that makes buying a plan from FatCow painless. For some types of hosting, the simplicity means that you’ll get a really good deal.

On the other hand, for shared web hosting, it’s only a good deal for the first term. Afterward, simplicity might limit your ability to get a package properly tailored to your needs.

The features are good, it’s very easy to use service, and the security seems pretty solid even if it might be able to do with a bit more.

The customer support is alright—nothing major, but a few things here and there give me the sense their knowledge base could have outdated or shoddy articles.

Overall, I would recommend FatCow for small to medium businesses who want VPS, WordPress, or dedicated hosting solutions.

I would not recommend FatCow for anyone looking to make a cheap personal website—if you want to do shared hosting but with full features, either FatCow or a high-tiered shared hosting package with another company would be good.



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How to Optimize Videos for Your WordPress Website (Expert Tips)

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How to Optimize Videos for Your WordPress Website (Expert Tips)

Do you want to optimize videos for your WordPress website?

Videos are a fantastic way to engage your audience, but video files can take up a lot of space. They can slow down your website’s performance and negatively impact the user experience. That’s why optimizing videos is so important.

In this guide, we will show you how to optimize videos for websites.

How to Optimize Videos for Your WordPress Website

Why Optimize Videos for Websites?

The main reason you should optimize videos for your website is because they can be incredibly heavy to load.

Video files contain high-quality visuals and audio that make them large in file size. In fact, a single 1080p video that lasts 30 seconds can add about 30-50 MB to a website.

For context, at WPBeginner, we always aim to compress our images to less than 30 KB, which is way less than the average size of a 30-second video. If a file size is bigger than that, then it can negatively affect the page loading time.

A slow-loading website can create a chain reaction. First, it can frustrate users who want to access your website, which can then cause them to leave for a competitor.

If you run an eCommerce store, then slow performance can also lead to a higher bounce rate and lower conversions.

But don’t worry. If you have video content on your website, then all you need to do is follow our tips to optimize it and prevent that domino effect from ever happening.

Besides optimizing videos for your website performance, it’s also good to optimize videos for SEO. With the rise of video content platforms like YouTube and TikTok, videos have become a powerful tool to bring in traffic to your website.

When optimized properly, video search results can be more noticeable, boost your online visibility, and improve your search engine rankings.

That being said, let’s take a look at how to optimize videos for websites. You can use the quick links below to skip to different tips in our post:

1. Use a Video Hosting Service

First, you should choose a reliable video hosting platform. Our years of experience with WordPress have shown that it’s better to use a third-party video hosting provider than to self-host your own videos.

You can read our article on why you should never upload a video to WordPress for more details. But essentially, uploading videos to your media library can take up a lot of your web hosting bandwidth and resources.

Even if you use a powerful cloud or dedicated web host, it’s much easier to use embedded videos than to self-host your video content. If you host your own videos, then you will need to process them to be compatible with different devices.

Meanwhile, platforms like YouTube and Vimeo take care of this for you. There’s no need to worry about using a certain file format or resolution so long as they are supported by the platform.

Then, you can simply embed the video in your WordPress website using a Video block and the URL of your content.

Embedding a YouTube video in WordPressEmbedding a YouTube video in WordPress

You can check out our guide on the best video hosting sites if you need recommendations.

If you are displaying product videos for your WooCommerce website, then you can also read our step-by-step guide on adding WooCommerce product videos to galleries.

2. Compress Your Video Before Uploading It

Images need to be compressed before you upload them to WordPress, and so do videos. Compression is a quick and easy way to reduce file sizes so they don’t slow down your page speed.

That being said, not all video optimization tools are equal. While they may make the file size smaller, they can also compromise your video quality.

When looking for software to compress your videos, make sure that it supports the file format you are planning to use.

If you are uploading videos to YouTube or Vimeo, then most likely, you are using a popular format like MP4, WebM, or MOV. These formats are widely supported by video compression platforms.

Additionally, consider using a tool that offers adjustable compression levels. Typically, you will be able to choose between low, medium, or high video quality. You may also select a desired resolution to make the size smaller.

Finally, don’t forget to consider the platform’s pricing. There are many free software options to optimize videos for websites online, but you must test them out to see if they add a watermark.

One popular online video optimization tool is VEED.IO.

This free platform comes with basic and advanced compression settings and doesn’t add a watermark to your content. All you need to do is upload your video to the tool and select a video quality and resolution.

VEED.IO video compressorVEED.IO video compressor

If you want to use a desktop tool, then you can check out HandBrake.

It’s a free and open-source video compression platform that’s compatible with all major operating systems.

HandBrake video optimization toolHandBrake video optimization tool

3. Set Up Your Video Sitemap and Schema Markup

Reducing the video file size and quality is just one part of video optimization. If you want your videos to appear on search engine results pages (SERPs), then you need to help Google understand and index your content effectively.

One way to do this is to use the All in One SEO for WordPress (AIOSEO) plugin. It’s the best WordPress SEO plugin that can help you easily optimize your content and monitor your website’s performance.

To access AIOSEO’s Video SEO features, like the Video Sitemap and Video Schema Markup, you will need to sign up for a Pro plan.

Then, you can install and activate the AIOSEO plugin in WordPress. For more guidance, check out our guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

After installing the plugin, you can activate the license key. Simply go to All in One SEO » General Settings from your WordPress admin area and insert the license key there.

Activating the AIOSEO License KeyActivating the AIOSEO License Key

From here, you can follow our step-by-step guide on how to set up a video sitemap in WordPress.

A video sitemap is a specialized XML sitemap that provides detailed information about the videos on your website. This data includes the video title, description, duration, thumbnail URL, and the page where the video is embedded.

By creating a video sitemap, you enable search engines to crawl and index your videos more effectively.

Another important step is setting up video schema markup. This is structured data that helps search engines understand what your videos are about.

It increases the likelihood of your videos showing up as special previews (or rich snippets) in search results, making them more noticeable to people searching online. Here’s how that looks:

Example of an optimized video search resultExample of an optimized video search result

To configure video schema markup on AIOSEO, just go to the WordPress post or page where your video is embedded and open the WordPress block editor.

After that, scroll down to the AIOSEO Settings and navigate to the ‘Schema’ tab. Then, click ‘Generate Schema.’

Clicking Generate Schema button on AIOSEO settingsClicking Generate Schema button on AIOSEO settings

Now, the Schema Generator pop-up will appear. In the Schema Catalog tab, look for the ‘Video’ schema template.

Go ahead and click the ‘+’ button next to the Video template.

Adding the Video schema template in AIOSEOAdding the Video schema template in AIOSEO

Now, you will be able to fill out your video information. In the first three fields, you can enter the video’s Name, Description, and Content URL.

For the Name and Description, feel free to use AIOSEO’s Smart Tags. These are predefined labels that can easily add existing information from your content, such as the post title, site title, and post excerpt.

AIOSEO's video schema template settingsAIOSEO's video schema template settings

As for the Content URL, you can enter the address of the video media file. That means the URL should end with the file format, like https://www.example.com/video/123/file.mp4

Google has said that providing your video’s Content URL is the best way for them to fetch your video file. But if you uploaded your video to a video hosting site like YouTube, then this may not be possible.

Scrolling down, you will find the Embed URL, Upload Date, Is Family Friendly, and Thumbnail URL settings.

AIOSEO's video schema template settings for the embed URL, upload date, family-friendliness, and thumbnail URLAIOSEO's video schema template settings for the embed URL, upload date, family-friendliness, and thumbnail URL

You will use the Embed URL if you uploaded the video to a third-party service and don’t have access to the Content URL. Here, you need to enter the address to the video’s embeddable player, so it should look like https://www.example.com/embed/123

If you’ve uploaded the video to YouTube, then you can find the embed URL by opening the YouTube video and clicking the ‘Share’ button below the player.

Clicking the YouTube share buttonClicking the YouTube share button

After that, click ‘Embed’ in the popup window.

You will see a full video embed code in the next popup.

Clicking the Embed option on YouTube share popupClicking the Embed option on YouTube share popup

Note that you don’t need to copy-paste the whole thing. What you should do is block the URL that comes between the double quotes after the src= attribute.

This is your video’s Embed URL.

Example of a YouTube embed URLExample of a YouTube embed URL

After that, copy-paste this URL back into AIOSEO’S Video Schema Generator.

For the Thumbnail URL, you can copy-paste your image URL into the field or upload a new image to the media library. Note that the minimum size is 112 pixels in width and height.

Once all the settings look good, simply click the ‘Add Schema’ button.

Clicking the Add Schema button on AIOSEO's Schema GeneratorClicking the Add Schema button on AIOSEO's Schema Generator

And that’s it!

Now, you should see a Video schema item in the Schema tab within the AIOSEO Settings.

Seeing the Video schema in AIOSEO SettingsSeeing the Video schema in AIOSEO Settings

4. Enable Lazy Loading

Lazy loading means your website delays loading certain content elements until someone scrolls to where the content is on the screen. When lazy loading is turned on for videos, your website will wait to load the video player and content until the viewer is about to watch it.

This makes your website load faster initially because it doesn’t have to load all the video elements at once.

To do this, you can use WP Rocket. It’s one of the best WordPress caching plugins on the market, and it comes with a feature to lazy load images and videos.

WP RocketWP Rocket

The first step is to install and activate the WP Rocket plugin. You can read our guide on how to install a WordPress plugin for more information.

Next, go to Settings » WP Rocket from your WordPress dashboard and navigate to the ‘Media’ tab. Then, simply check the ‘Enable for iframes and videos’ and the ‘Replace YouTube iframe with preview image’ boxes.

What the second checkbox means is that, instead of loading the actual video player immediately when someone visits your web page, only a static image representing the video is loaded first.

Enabling video lazy loading in WP RocketEnabling video lazy loading in WP Rocket

If you want to lazy load images as well, then you can check out our article on how to lazy load images in WordPress.

5. Use a Video CDN

CDN is short for content delivery network, which is a service that can speed up your website.

It works by storing your website’s content across multiple servers worldwide. When someone visits your site, the CDN serves the content from the server nearest to them. This reduces the distance the data needs to travel and makes your website load faster.

A video CDN is designed to efficiently deliver video content. It optimizes video streaming by storing copies of your videos on servers located strategically around the world.

If you followed our suggestion to upload videos to a third-party service, then having a video CDN won’t be necessary. But for people choosing to self-host their own videos, we recommend using Bunny.net.

Bunny.netBunny.net

Bunny.net is one of the best WordPress CDN services with a video delivery CDN feature. Your videos will be protected in their enterprise-grade storage, and viewers can watch your videos in high quality with no buffering.

If you are interested in using a CDN, then check out our list of the best WordPress CDN services.

Bonus Tips to Optimize Background Videos in WordPress

If you need to optimize background videos for your WordPress website, then you can use the following tips.

Remove the Audio

Audio can add significant weight to a video file. If you are only using a video as a background without sound, then it’s best to strip the audio.

You can easily remove audio from video using video editing software. For recommendations, see our list of the best video editing software.

Alternatively, you can use the free audio remover for videos by Adobe Express. Simply upload your video, and the tool will handle the sound removal for you. The video will then be downloadable as an MP4 file.

Adobe Express Free Audio Remover for VideosAdobe Express Free Audio Remover for Videos

Shorten the Duration

Shortening the video duration is another good way to do video compression for background or auto-play videos. This can decrease the overall file size, making it quicker to load and improving website performance.

Typically, 30 seconds or less in video length should be enough for a background video.

Again, you can use video editing software to reduce your video length. For a free online tool, you can use Canva or Adobe Express’s Video Trimmer.

Canva video trimmerCanva video trimmer

Avoid Looping Forever

When using background or auto-play videos on your website, it’s essential to avoid endless looping. Looping is when the video keeps playing over and over, and it can consume a lot of bandwidth.

It’s also important to consider the context in which the video is displayed. If the video is a brief introduction or showcases a specific product, then a limited number of loops or a single playthrough is usually enough to communicate the message.

In WordPress, you can control the loop behavior of your YouTube video to reduce the strain on your website’s resources. Our guide on how to add a YouTube video as a full-screen background in WordPress shows you how.

Use a Good Contrasting Text Color

People who use an auto-playing video as their homepage background will usually put some text on top of it. In this situation, it’s good to use a text color that contrasts well with the video’s color scheme.

This way, the text remains easily readable and stands out prominently against the video background.

If you want tips and tricks on choosing a text color for your background video, visit our guide on how to choose the perfect color scheme.

Also, you can check out our article on the best WordPress themes for video websites to find designs that complement your website and video content.

FAQs About How to Optimize Videos for Your WordPress Website

Now, let’s address some common questions related to optimizing videos for your WordPress website.

1. What is the best video format for a WordPress website?

WordPress supports video file types like .mp4, .m4v, .mov, .wmv, .avi, .mpg, .ogv, .3gp, and .3g2.

It’s recommended to use MP4 with H.264 codec for the best balance between quality and file size.

2. How do I optimize a YouTube video in WordPress?

If you embed your YouTube videos, then WordPress will take care of the embedding process and ensure the video player loads efficiently.

However, you can optimize videos further by enabling lazy loading, compressing the video files, and setting up video schema markup and sitemap with AIOSEO. The last step ensures that search engines can understand and index your videos properly.

You can also check out our list of best YouTube video gallery plugins for WordPress for more features to enhance your website’s videos.

3. How do I make my WordPress video load faster?

To make your WordPress videos load faster, you can upload them to a third-party hosting service like YouTube or Vimeo. Self-hosting your own videos is not recommended, as it often requires more server resources and slows down your website.

You will also need to compress the videos to reduce their file sizes without compromising quality.

Additionally, it’s a good idea to enable lazy loading for video content. This ensures that your website loads quickly the first time, and the videos are only loaded when the visitor scrolls down to view them.

We hope this article has helped you learn how to optimize videos for websites. You may also want to check out our list of the best WordPress plugins for YouTube publishers and our tutorial on how to show the latest videos from your YouTube channel in WordPress.

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With WordPress.com, This Novelist’s Success Is No Mystery – WordPress.com News

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With WordPress.com, This Novelist’s Success Is No Mystery – WordPress.com News

How a bestselling author uses WordPress.com to write his own story.

Dan Alatorre murders people for a living. Not literally, but literarily: His thrilling mystery novels have captivated audiences around the world, landing him on multiple bestseller lists. 

Like so many authors of the internet age, Dan started his writing journey with a blog. Back then, his posts were focused more on the day-to-day happenings of his life, and they eventually provided the fodder for his first book: a silly autobiographical tale about a father and his daughter. 

Dan has always had many different stories to tell. He published titles in a variety of genres, such as horror, romance, humor, and science fiction, before he tried his hand at murder mysteries. It didn’t take long for his unforgettable characters and unique storytelling to captivate audiences. 

“It is great when some stranger you’ve never met picks up your book and reads it. You wrote words down, they read it, and it changed their life.”

For inspiration when writing his novels, Dan looks to what has piqued his interest throughout his life–1950s film noir classics, modern-day crime shows, and mystery authors like Agatha Christie–and then puts his unique spin on things. In his most popular series, Double Blind, he’s found an equation for success: two detectives, with an underlying current of romantic tension, working to solve a murder. Each case is its own self-contained story, so it not only works as part of the series, but it also makes a good standalone novel. “Good ideas were and are everywhere for an author, so I have about twenty additional story ideas for the characters,” he says. “As long as readers enjoy reading them, I’ll keep writing them.”

His creativity unlocked, Dan was able to concentrate on that all-important but oft-ignored aspect of any creative business: marketing. His website, danalatorre.com, was already his personal space on the web but it also gave his fans a VIP entrance to interact with him. With his Readers Club, Dan is able to go above and beyond simply promoting his books, building an active community of engaged readers. That sense of connection—with other murder-mystery fans as well as with him, the author—makes each new novel even more likely to be a success. 

“It’s a great way to build that rapport with your fan base. If they’re interacting with their favorite author, they’re a fan for life.”

But don’t just take his word for it. If you’re an active (or aspiring) author, there are many other reasons to carve out a corner of the internet just for yourself and your fans. 

Always be writing

Since writing is already something you do, an active blog can help provide insight to your audience about your writing process, upcoming events, story ideas, and so much more. It will position you as a valuable resource for readers and potential collaborators, leaving them eager to hear more from you.

Build your brand

Your website is a distillation of your personal brand, reflecting your unique literary style, voice, and identity. Choosing the right theme for your site—from colors, to fonts, to layout, and more—can help reinforce your work as an author. A good website builds trust, and it can help you stand out like a literary beacon in the vast sea of books.

Control the story

In an age of online reviews and social media commentary, other voices can often shape the narrative. A personal website provides a platform for you to tell your own story, highlighting your work in the way that you want.

Ready to write your success story? Use coupon code wpsuccessda for 25% off annual plans. Visit WordPress.com/pricing or click below to get started:


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How to Create a Wholesale Order Form in WordPress (3 Ways)

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How to Create a Wholesale Order Form in WordPress (3 Ways)

Want to learn how to create a wholesale order form in WordPress?

The standard WooCommerce shop layout isn’t designed for B2B purchases. That’s because B2B buyers have distinct requirements, which is why you need a wholesale order form to accommodate their needs. A wholesale form lets buyers purchase in bulk and customize the products to fit their brand.

In this article, we’ll discuss how to create a wholesale order form in WordPress so customers can buy your products in bulk faster.

how-to-create-a-wholesale-order-form-in-wordpress-og

Why Use a Wholesale Order Form?

If you have an online store and can fulfill orders in large quantities, you may want to set up a bulk order form with whole pricing to allow your customers to purchase in bulk.

Many B2B and dropshipping businesses are looking for wholesale prices so they can profit from selling your products as well.

Wholesale order forms simplify the ordering process for your customers. They can quickly select the products they need, specify quantities, and place orders.

WooCommerce is the most popular eCommerce platform in the market, used by millions of small and large businesses. It’s a great tool for setting up beautiful stores with product pages and managing orders.

But if you want a simple solution to accommodating resellers, then you’ll want to add a wholesale order form to your WordPress site.

You can just click the links below to jump to any method you want to use.

Method 1: How to Create Wholesale Order Forms with Wholesale Suite

In this section, we’ll be sharing our preferred method of creating wholesale order forms online. First off, you’ll need to install Wholesale Suite.

Wholesale Suite is a collection of plugins that easily add wholesale to your WooCommerce store. The beauty of it is that it works with WooCommerce, making it a viable option for online store owners, not just WordPress users.

Wholesale Suite PluginsWholesale Suite Plugins

There are three plugins that make up the suite:

  1. Wholesale Order Form: This plugin lets you create order forms that can be customized to your needs.
  2. Wholesale Prices Premium: You can set custom prices for your WooCommerce products, allowing you to offer multiple levels of wholesale discounts.
  3. Wholesale Lead Capture: With the plugin, you can build wholesale registration forms, logins, and thank you pages to improve the buyer experience.

Note: You can just create a wholesale order form online using only the Wholesale Order Form plugin. However, the Wholesale Suite works best as a package since it comes with many more features, so you can get your store to work just the way that you want it to.

To get started, you’ll need to download the Wholesale Order Form plugin. If you need help with that, follow our tutorial on how to install a WordPress plugin.

From there, you can go to Wholesale Order » Forms in your WordPress admin area. Then, click on the ‘Add Form’ to create a new form.

Add formAdd form

This will automatically redirect you to the Form Editor page. You’ll want to customize the ‘Order Form Table.’

This is where you can design how your products will appear to buyers on the front end.

Order form table Order form table

It should automatically populate the products under the ‘Order Form Table.’ If you don’t have any products in your WooCommerce store, you’ll need to add them to your store first.

If you need help with that, we recommend reading our Ultimate Guide to WooCommerce.

All you have to do is drag and drop modules from the table elements under the ‘Edit Form’ tab, located on the right panel of the editor. Then, drop them into the form.

There are tons of elements you can add, starting with ‘Header/Footer Elements.’ This includes the search input, category filter, add selected products to cart, cart subtotal, and more.

Header and footer elementsHeader and footer elements

These elements are particularly useful if you have a long list of products, which can help users find what they’re looking for or see the total cost at the top or bottom of the order form.

Also, you can customize table elements, everything from product images and names to prices, in-stock amounts, and more.

Of course, don’t forget to include the ‘Add to Cart Button’ for each item so shoppers can add your products to their carts.

Table elements Table elements

If you want to rearrange the positioning of the form columns, all you have to do is click the ‘Re-order Element icon’ at the top of each column.

This will allow you to drag the column right and left. The trash icon will allow you to delete columns as well.

Reorder element Reorder element

If you want to change the text or adjust the styles of any input field, just hit the ‘Element Settings’ icon, and a sidebar will appear.

For example, you can choose a different button color or change the ‘Button Text’ to ‘Buy Now.’

Element settingsElement settings

In the ‘Settings’ tab of the right side panel, you can choose to customize how you want the products to be sorted in the form, how many products are loaded per page, and whether all variations are shown individually.

The ‘Lazy Loading’ option is where more products will load as the user scrolls so that they don’t have to click on the next page to see more items.

Settings of wholesale order form Settings of wholesale order form

Once you’re done customizing your order form, don’t forget to give it a name.

And you can hit the ‘Publish’ button when you’re ready for it to go live.

Publish order form Publish order form

Now, all that is left to do is to embed the order form to any post or page in your WooCommerce store. We recommend placing it on a landing page or user registration page.

First, you’ll need to copy the shortcode at the top of the order form.

Copy shortcode Copy shortcode

Then, head over to the page you’d like to add the form to on your site.

Hit the ‘+’ icon on the top left corner of the editor.

+ icon+ icon

From there, add the ‘Shortcode’ widget.

And then, you can paste the shortcode for your wholesale order form.

Paste shortcode Paste shortcode

Feel free to add any other important information to the page that could help boost conversions or give buyers more information. For example, adding shipping and delivery information or security and trust badges could help.

Go ahead and hit ‘Publish’ or ‘Update’ at the top right corner to make it live.

Hit publish Hit publish

From there, you can check to ensure everything looks and runs smoothly.

Here’s what it should look like. Unlike the other methods, this one gives users a better experience, since they can search products or filter them by category.

Live apparel wholesale order form Live apparel wholesale order form

Method 2: How to Create Wholesale Order Forms With WPForms

WPForms is the most powerful drag-and-drop WordPress form plugin out there. It allows you to easily create all types of forms, including contact forms, payment forms, and wholesale order forms, all without any coding.

WPForms form builderWPForms form builder

To get started, you’ll need to install the WPForms plugin. For detailed instructions, you may want to follow our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Note: While there is a WPForms free version, you’ll need the WPForms Pro version to use the wholesale order form template.

Upon activation, you need to visit the WPForms » Settings page from the WordPress admin sidebar to enter your license key.

wpforms-license-keywpforms-license-key

Once you’ve done that, head over to the WPForms » Add New screen from the WordPress dashboard.

This will take you to the WPForms drag and drop builder.

WPForms add newWPForms add new

Customize your wholesale order form.

This will take you to the ‘Select a Template’ page.

Here you can begin by typing a name for your form.

Name your formName your form

After that, you can choose the ‘Wholesale Order Form’ template that you want.

Hover over the form and click the ‘Use Template’ button.

Use template for wholesale order form Use template for wholesale order form

Next, the template will be generated for you, and you can start editing the fields.

Start by scrolling down on your form to the ‘Your Order’ section.

Then, you’ll want to click on one of the dropdown item fields to open its setting in the left-hand panel.

Here, you’ll be able to rename the Label to whatever your product name is and adjust the quantities and prices accordingly.

You can add more buying options by clicking the ‘+’ button to add another choice to your ‘Dropdown Items’ field.

Your orderYour order

If you want to add more products, drag and drop the ‘Dropdown Items’ field to the form preview.

Then, you can edit the name, quantities, and prices the same way.

dropdown items dropdown items

Repeat these steps for each of the dropdown item fields for all the items that you want to sell at wholesale prices.

You can add or remove fields to your order form by dragging them from the left panel to the right panel.

Beyond that, you can update the ‘Form Name’ and ‘Form Description’ to tell visitors what this form is and provide any important information.

To make these changes, just go to the ‘General’ tab under the Settings panel.

Form name and form descriptionForm name and form description

Configure your form notifications.

Once you’ve finished customizing the wholesale order form, you’ll want to receive notifications every time someone has completed the form. That way, you can notify your suppliers or in-house inventory team and process the orders quickly.

Emails are an easy way to send a notification whenever someone submits the online wholesale form on your site.

In the left side panel, click on ‘Notifications.’ From there, you’ll need to toggle the ‘Enable Notifications’ to the right.

Enable notifications Enable notifications

After that, you can customize the ‘Send to Email Address,’ ‘Email Subject Line,’ ‘From Name,’ ‘From Email,’ and ‘Email Message.’

WPForm automatically uses your site’s admin email by default.

Default notification wpforms Default notification wpforms

In the email message, you can let them know that you’ve received their order form and that someone will start working on it shortly.

By default, the Email Message field contacts the ‘{all_fields}’ Smart Tag, which shows all the user-entered fields and their labels from the form itself.

Email message notifications Email message notifications

Once you’re done, scroll up to the top of the WPForms editor.

Then, hit the ‘Add New Notifications’ button.

Add new notifications buttonAdd new notifications button

Customize your form confirmations.

Form confirmations are shown to site visitors once they have submitted the wholesale order form on your site. They let people know that the request has gone through and provide them with any information about the next steps.

It is similar to the form notifications message, except this will appear on-screen for your user.

Under ‘Settings,’ you’ll need to select ‘Confirmations.’

ConfirmationsConfirmations

From here, you can choose the ‘Confirmation Type.’ There are three types to choose from.

  1. Message: A pop-up confirmation appears, letting them know the order was processed.
  2. Show Page: This confirmation type takes site visitors to a specific web page on your site to thank them for your order. If you want more details, read our tutorial on how to create a thank you page in WordPress.
  3. Go to URL (Redirect): This option lets you send visitors to a different website once they’ve submitted your form.

From there, you can update the ‘Confirmation Message’ to your liking.

Once you’re satisfied with the message, click the ‘Add New Confirmation’ button up top.

Add new confirmation Add new confirmation

Set up payment settings.

If you want to make bulk order checkouts fast and easy, you’ll have to enable a payment gateway on your site.

WPForms works with Stripe, PaPal, Authorize.Net, and Square. Since you’re working with potentially huge orders, you may want to offer multiple payment methods.

For this tutorial, we’ll use Stripe. Once you have set up the Stripe addon, drag the ‘Stripe Credit Card’ field under the ‘Payment Fields’ onto the form editor.

Stripe credit card Stripe credit card

To learn more about connecting your payment method to WPForms, follow our tutorial on how to create a WordPress form with payment options.

On the left panel, go to the ‘Payments’ section of the form builder. Then, you’ll need to select your payment gateway. In this case, we’re using Stripe.

Toggle the ‘Enable one-time payments’ to the right to accept payments from your form. Then, you’ll need to fill out the ‘Payment Description’ so customers know why their card was charged.

Stripe one time payments Stripe one time payments

Scroll down, and you’ll also be able to ‘Enable recurring subscription payments.’ You can change the ‘Plan Name’ and set the ‘Recurring Period’ to any time period you wish.

If you have multiple subscription offerings or tiered plans, you can just hit the ‘Add New Plan.’

Recurring payments Recurring payments

If you want to protect your form from spam, refer to our guide on how to block contact form spam in WordPress. That way, you won’t have to worry about fraudulent submissions.

Add the wholesale order form to your website.

After you’ve created the form, you’ll need to add it to your WordPress site. WPForms lets you quickly add your forms to any location on your website, including your pages, blog posts, and even the sidebar menu.

Don’t forget to hit the ‘Save’ button at the top right corner so you don’t lose any changes you’ve made. From there, also hit the ‘Embed’ button.

Embed and save button Embed and save button

A pop-up window will appear asking whether you’d like to ‘Select Existing Page’ or ‘Create New Page.’ Either option will work fine, but for this tutorial, let’s click on ‘Create a New Page.’

Next, you will be asked to name your page.

Pick a name and hit the ‘Let’s Go!’ button.

wholesale order form embed in a page wholesale order form embed in a page

The form should automatically be embedded onto your page. Review the form and make any changes to the page.

If you click on the form, you’ll be able to edit the ‘Block’ on the right-side panel. From here, you can toggle the ‘Show Title’ and ‘Show Description’ buttons.

Show title and descriptionShow title and description

This tells your visitors what your form is all about.

Once you’ve made the necessary changes to the site, you can hit the ‘Publish’ button.

Publish wholesale order form Publish wholesale order form

Now, you’ve successfully created a wholesale hat order form from WPForms!

Here’s what it should look like.

Custom hats wholesale order formCustom hats wholesale order form

Method 3: How to Create Wholesale Order Forms With WP Simple Pay

If you’re looking for a plugin that accepts more than the standard options like Stripe or PayPal, you may want to consider a dedicated payment plugin app to create your wholesale order forms.

WP Simple Pay is the best Stripes payment plugin for WordPress that lets you quickly collect one-time and recurring payments directly from your site.

WP Simple Pay websiteWP Simple Pay website

While it’s advertised as a Stripe payment plugin, it’s so much more. You can accept 10+ payment methods, including most major credit cards, Google Pay, Apple Pay, Afterpay, Alipay, Klarner, ACH Direct Debit, and more.

This is especially important for wholesale buyers since many of them will pay via ACH direct debit. But others may want ‘Buy Now Pay Later‘ options like Klarna or Afterpay.

Allowing resellers to pay in installments will make your wholesale products accessible to more businesses.

To get started, you’ll need to download the WP Simple Pay plugin. If you need help, then please see our guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Note: There’s also a free version of WP Simple Pay, which allows you to only accept Stripe payments. However, if you want to take other forms of payment methods or have access to premium features, we recommend the paid version.

Connect Stripe to Your Site.

Upon activation, you’ll be directed to the setup wizard. This lets you set up your Stripe account and connect it to your website.

In the setup wizard, hit the ‘Let’s Get Started’ button.

WP Simple Pay setup wizard WP Simple Pay setup wizard

Just click on the ‘Connect with Stripe’ button, which will allow you to accept online payments from your wholesale order form.

Connect with Stripe Connect with Stripe

Next up, enter the email address you’ll be using for your Stripe account and then hit ‘Continue.’

If you don’t have a Stripe account, you can easily create one.

Get started with StripeGet started with Stripe

Once you’ve completed this process, you’ll be sent to a success page that says ‘Setup Complete.’

After that, you’ll need to build an order form. Go ahead and click on the ‘Create a Payment Form’ button.

Create a payment form Create a payment form

Customize Your Wholesale Order Form

Now that you’ve connected your website to Stripe, you can start creating an order form.

For this tutorial, you’ll want to find and select the ‘Variable Product Form’ template. This template has all the form elements you need to sell products.

Use variable product form templateUse variable product form template

After choosing the template, you’ll be shown a payment form page where you can add a title and description.

Below that, you can also add CAPTCHA and email verification to protect against fraud or fake orders.

Title and description of payment form Title and description of payment form

Once you’ve chosen where to send your customers, click on the ‘Payment’ option from the left panel.

From here, you’ll be able to change the currency, amount, and even pick between on-time and subscription payments.

Set pricesSet prices

Also, scroll down to ‘Payment Methods’ and check all of the boxes of the payment options you are willing to accept.

By accepting more payment methods, you appeal to a wider audience.

Payment methods in WP Simple PayPayment methods in WP Simple Pay

In the ‘Form Field’ tab, you can add, remove, or customize any form fields you want.

The ‘Variable Product Form’ template we’ve selected has many of the important form fields you would need in an order form. This includes fields such as:

  • Quantity
  • Size
  • Color
  • Amount
  • Full Name
  • Email Address
  • Phone Number
  • Address
  • Payment Methods
  • Checkout Button
Form fields Form fields

Go ahead and customize each of the fields by hitting the dropdown area until you’re satisfied.

In the ‘Quantity’ field, you can specify the maximum and minimum quantity customers can buy.

QuantityQuantity

In the ‘Size’ field, you can decide all the different variants or options you want. Then, separate them with a comma.

The same goes for the ‘Color’ field as well.

Size labelSize label

Keep in mind you can change any ‘Label’ name to any option you want, based on the type of product you’re selling.

When you’re done customizing your form, don’t save hit ‘Publish’ on the right side of the page.

Publish WP Simple Pay formPublish WP Simple Pay form

Add the Payment Form to a Page

Now that your wholesale order form is ready, it’s time to embed it on your site. To embed the form, simply go to the post or page where you want to publish it.

Then click the ‘+’ icon at the top left corner of the page editor.

+ block insert icon + block insert icon

Find and select the WP Simple Pay block to add it to the page.

It should appear in the editor.

WP Simple Pay blockWP Simple Pay block

From here, you can choose the wholesale order form you’ve just created. Finally, just click the ‘Publish’ or ‘Update’ button.

That’s all there is to it!

Preview of wholesale order form Preview of wholesale order form

Bonus: How to Add Wholesale Pricing in WooCommerce

Now you know how to successfully create a wholesale order form! That being said, you still may want to give distributors the option to purchase in bulk without needing to complete the form.

For example, the order form can be used for buyers looking to add branding or specify their unique requirements, while bulk purchases can be bought directly from your WooCommerce store.

In that case, you’ll be using the Wholesale Suite plugin. Head over to WooCommerce » All Products. You can edit any product of your choice. Under the ‘Product data’ section, you can set the ‘Regular price.’

WooCommerce regular pricingWooCommerce regular pricing

From that, you can scroll down to the ‘Wholesale Prices’ section and open the ‘Discount Type’ dropdown.

After that, you can now select the ‘Discount Type,’ ‘Discount (%),’ and the ‘Wholesale Price ($)’ to offer.

Wholesale discount percentage Wholesale discount percentage

On the same page, you’ll even be able to set the minimum quantity needed to receive wholesale pricing.

For more details, you can see our in-depth tutorial on how to add wholesale pricing in WooCommerce.

We hope this article helped you learn how to create a wholesale order form. You may want to read our post on the best WooCommerce plugins for your store or check out the best WooCommerce dropshipping plugins.

If you liked this article, then please subscribe to our YouTube Channel for WordPress video tutorials. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.



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