AskPat 320 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: What's up, everybody? Pat Flynn here, and welcome to Episode 320 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me today.
This very moment, I'm actually in Las Vegas for New Media Expo, and tomorrow, the day after this episode goes live, I'll be delivering my keynote presentation in Las Vegas, so look out on social media. You'll probably see at least a few tweets about my presentation there, hopefully, if it goes well. But thank you all so much for the encouragement and all the good lucks and stuff, I really appreciate that.
Sweet, now let's get to today's question from Michael.
Michael: Hi Pat, it's Mike. I love your show and all the stuff that you're doing. Thanks a lot for all that you do. So, here's my problem, at least I think it's a problem. I have an opt-in form on my website, and people opt in. They're taken to a thank you page. That thank you page tells them to go check their email, so then they go check their email to confirm to get onto my list, and when they confirm, the confirmation thank you page is actually kind of what I offer them in exchange for their email, and that is a syllabus with a bunch of links on it to different pages on my website that are part of a course. So what I'm trying to do is make sure that only people who sign up to my newsletter have access to that page, but I'm really not sure how to restrict that page only to people who click through from their email. Any thoughts on this would be great. Hey, I hope the question makes sense, and again, I appreciate all you're doing. Have a good one. Bye.
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up Michael? Thank you so much for the question today, I really appreciate it. I really like this question because a lot of people don't know to ask it, and so I think this is going to be really helpful for everybody out there who is listening because yeah, there might be some things on your thank you page and at the end of the onboarding sequence onto your email list, where you don't really want those things to be found. Those are the things you're giving away, so you want people who are signing up to have access to those things and not people who find you through Google or through a social sharing link or something like that. Now, you could protect it completely by doing a very, very hard, tedious process of having a password or connecting that person's email address to a specific database that then when that page opens, it reads if that person's email is in that database, and all those sorts of things. You don't have to go that far. Maybe one or two people. Even if one or two people a month kind of found it, I mean, that's fine.
I always find that if people find my ebook, Ebooks the Smart Way, without going through the email list, that's fine. I don't really care too much about that because what ends up happening is it provides so much value that they're going to want to get on my email list anyway. So don't feel too bad if a lot of people sort of “leak through.” But there are a lot of things you can do to protect that page. So here's a few things. One, just don't include any links to that page on your site. That's probably obvious, but you don't want to link to your thank you page anywhere but in that email that they get after they subscribe, so that's number one. Number two, don't include any sharing buttons on that page. That might sound obvious, but there are a lot of us who have plugins on our sites that automatically add social sharing buttons, and you can easily just disable them. Most of them will allow you to disable on certain pages, or just pages in general. You can disable it on that page, the social sharing button. So just keep a lookout for that; you don't want people to share that page, or maybe you do, in which case you leave it on, but again like you said you're trying to hold people back from getting access to this until they subscribe to your list.
So again, disabling those sharing buttons from those plugins that you have. Number three, this is probably the most important one. This tip is so that you don't have the search engines indexing that page, and a lot of times depending on the keywords and what people are looking for, sometimes they'll find this page before they find your main page, and that has happened to me on a couple niche sites before actually, so there's a couple plugins you can install. The first one is. . . Well, if you are using Yoast's WordPress SEO plugin. It's called WordPress SEO by Yoast. If that's your SEO plugin that you're using on your WordPress page, then you have what you need. You just simply have to go to the advanced settings for that particular post and click “no index” and “no follow.” The “no follow” is not that important, but the no index. There's a setting there that says meta robots index, and it says either index it or no index it. When you “no index” is; that essentially tells Google to not count that page in their search engines, to not even look at that page as if it wasn't even there. So that's going to help you avoid having that page show up in these search engines.
Maybe it shows up now, but if you put that there, the next time the spiders come and read your page, it's going to see and skip over that and you won't have to worry about it. So again, WordPress SEO by Yoast, if you're using that plugin or maybe you switch to it, on a page that you don't want to be found in Google, go to the advanced settings for that page when you're setting it up and then go to the meta robots index, and then switch it from index to “no index.” Now if you don't have that plugin and you have maybe another SEO plugin or whatever you use, there's a plugin that will do just that for you called Meta Robots WordPress plugin.
Again, it's called Meta Robots WordPress plugin. That's the name of it, and this is also by Yoast because not everybody uses Yoast SEO or WordPress SEO by Yoast. This essentially does the same thing for you. When you create a new blog post or when you create a new page, there'll be a drop down menu somewhere on that page it says robots meta, and there's some buttons you can click. You can click index follow, index no follow, no index follow, and no index no follow. If I don't want a page to be shown and have nothing to do with search engines in terms of links used or getting found in Google, I typically click the “no index, no follow.” Again, when you install that plugin it gives you these settings for you. So again, that plugin is called Meta Robots WordPress plugin. The other one that has that built into it amongst a whole bunch of other things to help you with SEO is called WordPress SEO by Yoast.
The last thing is you can also create a special URL if you're afraid of people just simply typing in the url.com/thankyou, and if that's your URL, some people might just type that in anyway. Probably not very many, but this is just a small thing. You can just have a really funky URL there so it just seems like it's unique and people won't remember it or share it or anything like that if it's something very valuable that they might think they would want to share. Again, that's not a big one. The big one is the plugins that I just talked about, the no social sharing buttons, and then obviously not linking to it anywhere else but that email. So Michael, I hope that answered your question and gives you some thoughts and things you can do to help you hide that page from everybody else but those who subscribe, and as a result of having your question featured here on the show, we're going to send you an AskPat t-Shirt, so yay, congrats.
For those of you listening, if you'd like an AskPat t-Shirt and also to have your question featured here on the show, head on over to AskPat.com and you can ask right there on that page. Thank you to SpeakPipe for the ability to collect your voicemails via MP3.
All right, that's it. Thank you so much, I really appreciate it, and thank you for all the good luck and the kind words about my presentation tomorrow. If you're listening to this today, you want to wish me luck, head on over to Twitter. Just use my name @PatFlynn and give me a shout out and a good luck. I'll be looking at those because it's something I'm really nervous about but really, really excited about too. So thank you so much and here's a quote by Simon Sinek for you today. He says, “Make it about them, not about you.” Cheers, take care, and I'll see you the next episode of AskPat.