Jetpack 4.5: Monetize your site, brand new VideoPress, and many new shortcodes and widgets

Welcome to Jetpack 4.5, available now for upgrade or installation. We’re starting the year in style with some very exciting additions and improvements that we can’t wait for you to try. This release includes:

  • Jetpack Ads (WordAds)
  • Brand new VideoPress
  • New shortcode support
  • More sidebar widgets
  • An update to our Terms of Service

Jetpack Ads (WordAds)

Jetpack Ads is a new, one-click simple feature designed to help you generate income from your WordPress site. Jetpack Ads is powered by WordAds — the unique ad program from WordPress.com designed exclusively for WordPress sites. Not only do we provide high quality ads, but after working with tens of thousands of users we have determined the best placements to guarantee both the highest revenue and most reliable compatibility across most WordPress themes.

Jetpack Ads Earnings

Jetpack Ads is instantly available to all users who have purchased the Jetpack Premium plan — no approval process required. Once you’ve purchased the plan, activate the feature in the Engagement tab within Jetpack. You’ll start seeing ads on your site right away, and can tweak ad placement settings and view your earnings on WordPress.com.

Brand new VideoPress

VideoPress is an ad-free, high-quality (HD) video hosting and streaming service designed for WordPress. We think it’s the easiest way to upload and share videos to the web while retaining full brand control on your site (i.e., no ads!).

Over the past few months, we’ve rebuilt the VideoPress integration with Jetpack from the ground up. When you start using it, you’ll notice:

  • No more complicated signup process — it just works.
  • Full integration with your media library — if you know how to insert an image, you now know how to insert videos with VideoPress.
  • The ability to upload videos from the Media Library or directly from the Post Editor.

You can view and edit video meta data from the edit media page in the Media Library, and insert uploaded videos into any post or page.

VideoPress is available to all users on the Jetpack Premium plan (limited to 13Gb) and those on the Jetpack Professional plan (unlimited).

New shortcode support

All users have access to fourteen new shortcodes that have been available on WordPress.com for a while. These new shortcodes enable you to embed content from services like Twitter and Spotify directly into a post or page.

An example of a Spotify embed using our new shortcode

An example of a Spotify embed using our new shortcode

The new shortcodes are:

More sidebar widgets

We’ve added quite a few new widgets for your WordPress site sidebars and footers:

  • Follow Button: allow people to follow your site from a widget.
  • Authors: display your authors on the front end of your site. Note: this widget doesn’t come with much styling, so it is up to the theme/user to style as desired.
  • Blog Stats: a simple stat counter to display page views on the front end of your site.
  • Milestone: adds a countdown to an upcoming event or milestone that you designate.

Update to our Terms of Service

We’ve updated our Terms of Service to include a Jetpack-specific section that describes Jetpack, clarifies how features within Jetpack work, and links to a support document that outlines what information and content is synced to our servers when you use Jetpack. Please give it a read and let us know if you have any questions.

As always, you can take a look at the revision history to see exactly what has changed.

These changes will take effect on March 1, 2017. By using Jetpack after this date, you agree to our updated Terms of Service.

Full changelog and thanks

If you’d like to see the full list of the updates and changes to this version of Jetpack, you can read the full changelog.

We hope you’ll love the new Jetpack features and improvements! Install it on your site or upgrade your current version today and let us know what you think. As always, your feedback is extremely important to us and you can send it directly through our Support contact form.

A special thank you to the contributors to this release – thanks for helping make Jetpack better:

Ajk Palikuqi, Andrew Duthie, Bartek Wilczek, Benyamin Shoham, Brandon Kraft, Carolyn Sonnek, Dan Wyman, Daniel Walmsley, Derek Smart, Derek Springer, Drew Butler, Elio Rivero, Enej Bajgoric, Eric Binnion, George Stephanis, Ignacio Cruz, Igor Zinovyev, Jake Oehler Morrison, James Nylen, Jared Wenerd, Jeff Golenski, Jeremy Herve, Josh Betz, Lance Willett, Marcus Kazmierczak, Marin Atanasov, Mark George, Michael Arestad, Michael Torbert, Miguel Lezama, Nicola Heald, Oscar Lopez, Patrick Rauland, Rastislav Lamos, Rich Collier, Richard Muscat, Ross Wintle, Sam Hotchkiss, Stanimir Dinov, Steve Seear, Stuart Dum, Thomas Guillot, Timmy Crawford, Weston Ruter, Xiao Yu, Yoga Sukma

Posted in Releases | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Personal Plans Just Got More Personal: Now Include Priority Support

Last month we introduced the new Jetpack Personal plan, designed to provide WordPress site owners with the essentials needed for making sure their site was always safe and backed up at a much more affordable price.

To achieve this we bundled up the two core services most site owners have told us they consider essential: automated backups and spam protection.

However, there is another service that we consider essential: high quality support. If you’ve used Jetpack and needed help in the past, you’ve seen just how awesome our Support team is when it comes to helping you with any problems. Today, we’re very pleased to announce that our Personal Plan customers can now benefit from priority support – the same as with our other paid plans.

What is Priority Support?

Priority support simply means we’ll get to your ticket or request faster.

While we provide the same level of quality support to all our users, we know that a customer on a paid plan is likely to have more urgent requirements or a more critically important site. We do our best to get to solving your backup or security issues faster so that your site is back online safely as fast as possible.

Our twenty-five dedicated Happiness Engineers are experts in all things related to WordPress and WordPress security and are ready to help securing or restoring your site. We also cover a large number or timezones which means that somebody is likely to be available whenever you’re in need.

How do I get help?

Getting in touch with us is easy: just fill in this form with as much detail about the issue as possible, and your request will be waiting in our inbox for the next available Happiness Engineer.

I already purchased a Personal plan. Do I need to do anything?

No. All of our existing Personal plan subscribers will now automatically receive priority support. You don’t need to make any changes: just get in touch with us as usual if you need assistance.

How do I purchase the Personal plan?

For more details about our plans visit the comparison page, and when you’ve picked the right one for you, click on the “Get” button. If you’ve already decided on the Personal plan, you can instead go directly to the shopping cart and complete the purchase.

You will need to type in your site URL to get started, and you will be guided through the simple Jetpack installation process if the plugin is not already installed.

Posted in Features | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

A Year in Review: Automattic and Jetpack in 2016

As 2016 comes to a close and we look forward to 2017, we took some time to look back on the past twelve months across our company – Automattic – and all our products: WordPress.com, Jetpack, WooCommerce, and WordPress.com VIP.

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We hope you enjoy scrolling through our 2016 Annual Report — chock-full of fun and interesting stats about our products, like:

  • How many new posts were published on WordPress.com.
  • How many live chat requests and support emails we’ve replied to.
  • How many online stores are running WooCommerce, and how many sites have added Jetpack.
  • How many spam comment and brute force attacks we’ve blocked on your sites.

As well as answers to those burning questions you might have about Automattic, like:

  • How many languages we speak!
  • Our diversity and inclusion stats.
  • How many paid sabbaticals we’ve taken this year.
  • Exactly how many people named Michael work here (spoiler: not enough!).

We hope you’ll be with us throughout 2017 — either as users, as contributors, or as colleagues!

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Jetpack 4.4.2: WordPress 4.7 and Custom CSS Compatibility

Jetpack 4.4.2 is a small but important release that provides compatibility with WordPress 4.7, the latest version of WordPress that was released this week.

Custom CSS now in WordPress

The Custom CSS feature in Jetpack is now integrated in the new Customizer-based CSS editor introduced in WordPress 4.7.

Jetpack’s Custom CSS was very useful for making small (or more significant) changes to your site’s CSS without needing to modify your theme files or create a custom child theme. With WordPress 4.7 introducing the Additional CSS feature, we wanted to make sure that people previously using Jetpack’s Custom CSS can still use the edits they’ve made in the past and use this new WordPress CSS editor seamlessly in the future.

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Other improvements

We’ve also shipped a number of other enhancements and bug fixes in this release. A few highlights include:

  • Improved compatibility with the wp-missed-schedule plugin.
  • Fixed a bug that would create an infinite loop when removing the featured tag from the tag list.
  • Fixed an issue where WordPress help tabs were being hidden.
  • Improved the dashboard page to work better when there is no backup data yet.
  • Improved overall performance by clearing out unneeded scheduled jobs.

Full changelog and thanks

If you’d like to see the full list of the updates and changes to this version of Jetpack, you can check the full changelog here.

We hope you’ll love the new Jetpack features and improvements! Install it on your site or upgrade your current version today and let us know what you think. As always, your feedback is extremely important to us and you can send it directly through our Support contact form.

A special thank you to the contributors to this release – thanks for helping make Jetpack better:

Benyamin Shoham, Brandon Kraft, Daniel Walmsley, Derek Smart, Elio Rivero, Enej Bajgoric, Eric Binnion, George Stephanis, Igor Zinovyev, Jeremy Herve, Rich Collier, Sam Hotchkiss, Steve Seear, and Timmy Crawford.

Posted in Releases | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments

Jetpack’s Picks: Five Resources for December

At the beginning of each month, we’ll round up five of our favorites links around the internet to help you better run your business or blog in the month ahead.

Get ready for a focused December with the help of these five useful resources.

Website Design Trends for 2017

Websites are crucial to any business, and are often the first thing clients or customers see. Website Magazine offers a few examples of the features you can expect from updated websites in 2017.

“Designers – and the brands that employ them – cannot have their head in the mud when it comes to the trends impacting user expectations and how visible their sites will be on the increasingly sophisticated search engine result pages. Rather, you should be productive and advocate for better design.”

10 Simple Editing Hacks for DIY Bloggers

Producing quality content is key, even if you are a one-person army. Jeff Bullas gives us ten hacks for proofing our own content before hitting publish.

“The last thing you want to do is publish a blog post that has errors or doesn’t read well. Remember, your content is representative of your business!”

The Tools That 5 Highly Productive Entrepreneurs Use

When you’re running your own startup, it can be tough to stay organized and on track. Entrepreneur’s Han-Gwon Lung shares exactly what you’ll need to keep up with other productive entrepreneurs.

“When I graduated from college, I had no work experience. And that didn’t sit too well with the real life that followed. I repeatedly messed up at work or fell behind schedule because I lacked good productivity habits. Before long, I realized I needed help. So I turned to productivity apps for answers.”

4 Helpful Tools for Organizing Your Social Media Calendar

Looking to streamline your social media content strategy? Hubspot’s Sophia Bernazzani rounds up four tools to make social media pros’ lives a little easier.

“What do cross-country road trips, wedding speeches, and social media marketing have in common? You could wing all three, but it’s probably better to have a plan for what direction you’re heading — especially when it comes to your social media content strategy.”

33 Personal Blogs of Startup Marketers We Love

The personal blogs of marketers you admire offer glimpses into their lives — and why they’re so successful. Alfred Lua from Buffer compiled a list of the best blogs to draw inspiration from.

“I like to think that reading the blog of a marketer I admire is like having a coffee with them and getting a chance to learn all about their approach to marketing.”

Have a link we should consider for next month? Drop it in the comments below!

Posted in Jetpack's Picks | 2 Comments

The Jetpack Personal plan: affordable site security, backups, and spam protection

As a site owner, you rely on your website to attract customers and earn money — regardless of whether you run a high-traffic, e-commerce site or a “brochure” site for your restaurant, consultancy, or small business. The new Jetpack Personal plan is an affordable way to safeguard your site’s content, data, and code from hackers and spammers, so that your site is always up and running when your customers arrive.

Introducing the Jetpack Personal plan

Our new plan protects your site at a much lower price — providing the security essentials you need to keep your site safe from hackers and spammers.

Learn more about Jetpack’s Personal plan

Posted in Features | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Here’s What Jetpack Is Grateful For This Thanksgiving

As we gear up to celebrate Thanksgiving here in the U.S. this week, we checked in with six members of the Jetpack team to see what they are most grateful for.

Continue reading → Here’s What Jetpack Is Grateful For This Thanksgiving

Posted in Misc | 1 Comment

Jetpack 4.4.1: Bug Fixes

Jetpack 4.4.1 is a small update to yesterday’s 4.4 release.  It fixes two issues that were affecting a small number of our users:

  • Jetpack 4.4.1 fixes an issue where some users with slower servers would get an error on the Jetpack dashboard when WP_DEBUG was enabled.
  • Jetpack 4.4.1 fixes an issue where users on a Jetpack Professional plan who were paying monthly (as opposed to annually) wouldn’t be able to enable SEO Tools.

We hope you’ll love the new Jetpack features and improvements! Install it on your site or upgrade your current version today and let us know what you think. As always, your feedback is extremely important to us and you can send it directly through our Support contact form.

Posted in Releases | Tagged , | 6 Comments

Jetpack 4.4: New SEO Tools, Sidebar Widgets, and Personal Plans

Jetpack 4.4 has now been released which includes a ton of improvements, bug fixes, and a few new features for both free and paid users.

New Features

For our Jetpack Professional subscribers, we’ve also added a brand new feature: SEO Tools to help you optimize your site for search engines and social media.

We’ve also added two new sidebar widgets:

  • Google Translate” which allows users to translate your site into their own language, and
  • My Community” where you can see who recently interacted with your site.

Also new in Jetpack 4.4 is Pinterest embed support. Now, you can easily embed your Pinterest profile, boards, or individual pins simply by pasting the links into any post or page. Here’s an example of an embedded board:

Code, Speed, and Infrastructure Improvements

We’ve added a number of new unit tests to improve our development and release process, new API endpoints to allow better management of themes and plugins, and twelve new filters to make Jetpack more extensible.

We’ve also made progress on one of the biggest issues facing Jetpack users: site domain name changes. Jetpack 4.4 makes great improvements in easing some of those difficulties with the new Safe Mode feature. This will help with users who work a lot with staging sites, development, and even users who simply want to change the domain for their site.

Other improvements include replacing many of the screenshots throughout the plugin with SVGs in order to make the overall file size smaller and Photon is now using HTTPS by default.

New Personal Plan

New in Jetpack 4.4 is a brand-new Personal plan that provides site backups with unlimited storage and spam filtering. Now, you can have peace of mind knowing that your personal site is safe in our hands with the same quality of service that our Professional and Premium plans offer, but at much lower price.

Full Changelog and Thanks

If you’d like to learn more about these releases and the other changes brought to Jetpack, you can check the full changelog here.

We hope you’ll love the new Jetpack features and improvements! Install it on your site or upgrade your current version today and let us know what you think. As always, your feedback is extremely important to us and you can send it directly through our Support contact form.

Thank you for helping us continue to improve Jetpack, and a special thank you to our contributors:

Adam Heckler, Antti Koskinen, Alex Mills, Andrei Lupu, Andrew Duthie, Andrew dela Serna, Artur Piszek, Brandon Hubbard, Brandon Kraft, catchmyfame, Chase Livingston, Christopher Finke, Dan Walmsley, Derek Smart, Drew Butler, Elio Rivero, Enej Bajgoric, Eric Binnion, George Stephanis, Igor Zinovyev, Jeff Golenski, Jeremy Herve, Jesse Friedman, Josh Betz, karpad3, Kelly Dwan, Lance Willett, Mathilde Sahuguet, Marin Atanasov, Marko Andrijasevic, Michael Arestad, Miguel Lezama, Nikolay Yordanov, Oliver Juhas, Oscar Lopez, Rich Collier, Richard Muscat, Rocco Tripaldi, Ryan Kanner, Sam Hotchkiss, Simon Wheatley, Steve Seear, Timmy Crawford, Valerie Kalantyrski, Vuk Vuković, Xiao Yu, Will Brubaker, Will Kwon, and Yoga Sukma.

Posted in Releases | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

New to Blogging? Install These Five Jetpack Features First

You just started a blog and you’re ready to share it with the world. (Welcome to the wonderful world of blogging!)

Lucky for you, you’ve stumbled onto our blog, so hopefully you’ve been given the good advice to install Jetpack. Jetpack is a plugin for WordPress with many features (cough, cough, more than 40) to make your life as a blogger a whole lot easier.

With so many features to explore, where to begin? We’ve got you covered.

If you’re new to blogging (or to Jetpack), activate these five features first.

copy-of-get-people-to-stay-on-your-website-longer_-2

1. Keep your site safe and secure with Protect.

When you’re new to blogging, the last thing you want is to worry about your site’s security. Breathe easy knowing that your site is secure with Protect.

This feature allows you to protect your site against brute force attacks, which sadly, are becoming more and more of a frequent concern for website owners. By enabling Protect, your site will automatically block unwanted login attempts.

2. Spread the love on social media with Sharing.

Make it super simple for your blog readers to share your posts!

Sharing lets you add buttons to blog posts to give readers the ability to share a post to Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest, and a host of other social media/web services to amplify your message.

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3. Keep readers on your website longer with Related Posts.

Help readers better navigate your site by pointing them to related content you know they’ll love based on the blog post they’re currently reading.

related-posts-configs

Related Posts scans all of your posts, analyzes them, and selects at least three related archived blog posts to showcase underneath or above your post. This helps readers figure out what to read next and keeps them on your site even longer.

4. Be the first to know when your website experienced downtime with Monitor.

Ugh. Dreaded website downtime. It’s never fun when your site goes down. Monitor keeps tabs on your site and alerts you the moment downtime is detected.

Fun fact: Monitor checks your site every five minutes and notifies you as soon as a problem arises. We’ll also email you when your site is back up!

5. Make your blog a beautiful place to visit with Photon.

Photos are an incredibly important piece of the puzzle when it comes to finding success as a blogger. Compelling visuals help keep site visitors interested and engaged.

Screen Shot 2016-08-19 at 7.56.40 AM

If you don’t size your photos properly though, you can seriously slow down your site. That’s where Photon comes in handy. Photon is an image acceleration and editing service. What does this mean for you? Less load time on your host and faster image loading for your readers.

Seasoned bloggers, what do you think? Which Jetpack features would you recommend to a new blogger?

Don’t have Jetpack installed yet to try out these features? If you don’t currently have Jetpack, be sure to install it so you can begin taking advantage of all the plugin’s features. The easiest way to install Jetpack is via your site’s Dashboard. Please follow these instructions to install and connect Jetpack.

Posted in Features | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments
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