Author: Michael Cook

Read all posts from Michael Cook.

Yoast logo on destroyed city

The End of Yoast?

| WordPress

Acquisitions are nothing new in the WordPress world. Over the past five years, we’ve seen major – and well respected – companies sell out. (Post Status has a running tab of acquisitions on its site.)

One acquisition in particular has flown under the radar. Not the company that was sold, but the buyer. Yoast SEO announced in August that it was purchased by tech conglomerate Newfold Digital. I had never heard of Newfold Digital, but I’m very familiar with the two companies that were merged to create it.

Earlier this year, a private equity firm purchased Endurance International Group (EIG) and merged it with to create a new venture, Newfold Digital. EIG has long been scourge of mass frustration in the web development community. The company had a history of buying small, quality hosting companies and gutting them for parts, locking customers into long-term contracts, and turning them into plodding, poorly-managed digital sweatshops offering cheap hosting. Companies like Bluehost, HostGator, Site5, A Small Orange, and many others fell victim to EIG.

Needless to say, I’m not confident this is good news for site owners who use Yoast SEO (like me).

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AMA background

Salty Key Founder Joins Board of AMA

| Company News

Salty Key Marketing founder and lead developer Michael Cook has been invited to join the board of directors of the New Orleans Chapter of the American Marketing Association (AMA). In this capacity, Michael will lead the overhaul of the chapter website, manage the chapter’s social media accounts, and assist the chapter’s Communications Chair with media relations.

AMA New Orleans hosts monthly programming in and around New Orleans, including luncheons, seminars, and networking/meet-up events. The chapter has a storied history in New Orleans and is recognized as the preeminent resource for marketers nationwide.

A mobile tablet running faster with Google AMP.

Google AMP: The Need for (Mobile) Speed


A little over one year ago, Google unveiled Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP): an open-source framework hoping to give users a better mobile experience.

The AMP project was created to help publishers deliver high-quality content on an increasingly mobile web. While everyone understands that ads are necessary for online publications to make money, slow-loading mobile pages were frustrating users and actually losing publishers their readership.

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A photo of Penguins

Major Update to Google Penguin


When Google announced Penguin 4.0, the SEO world went nuts.

For those unfamiliar, Penguin is part of Google’s algorithm that fights web spam. Any site caught using manipulative link practices (e.g. using link farms to accumulate backlinks from keyword-rich anchor text) to influence their organic search ranking will be penalized by Google.

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An image of turning gears.

The Best Image Optimizers for WordPress

| WordPress

In regards to website performance, the single biggest mistake is not optimizing images. Let’s forget how page speed impacts SEO for a moment. Massive, high-resolution images are an anchor on your site. This kills page load times and leaves your website visitors frustrated. Performance is even more important for user experience (UX) than SEO, which is why page speed is so important to Salty Key.

There are dozens of free image optimizers available online, and a handful of WordPress plugins that will automatically optimize images (and bulk optimize images already uploaded) for you. But which are the best? We’ve done the research and we have the data to give you a definitive answer! Drumroll, please…

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