[Fixed] Infinite Redirect after switching WooCommerce site to SSL

According to Google’s Webmaster Blog, they are going to consider HTTPS as a ranking signal.  With this announcement, it becomes important that site owners switch their entire site to HTTPS.

If you already have SSL on all your pages, you do not need to do anything. However, I had a case where only the Checkout and Account pages were SSL protected. The rest of the site was not SSL protected.

I embarked on the journey to convert an e commerce site to HTTPS on all pages. Doing the conversion itself was easy. I used this guide to transfer the site to HTTPS.

However, the problem was I was receiving the dreaded infinite redirect message from Chrome. Initially, I thought it was a local browser cache issue. That was not the case. Digging deeper using Google Chrome’s FireBug tool, I determined that the http://www.example.com was redirecting to https://www.example.com. In turn the latter would redirect to the former. This 2-way ping pong redirect would continue for about 3 or 4 times before the browser gives up and announces failure.

I found the issue was a non-trivial (in hindsight) setting under WooCommerce. Go to WooCommerce->Settings->Checkout->Force HTTP when leaving the checkout

Make sure that setting option “Force HTTP when leaving the checkout” is Unchecked.

When this option is checked, it will redirect all non-checkout pages to http. There lies the problem. The 301 site-wide redirect for http:// to https:// was conflicting with this WooCommerce setting. Each was reversing each other out, hence the infinite redirect.

I had posted in multiple online groups but never received a proper response, so I hope this helps someone.

 

WordPress Meetup PBG Re-cap

This is my first meetup for this meetup group.  Carolyn Lee of Palm Beach SEO was kind enough to share her thoughts on links.

Link Building Takeaways:

1. Title Tags are the one of the most important factor among SEO factors.

2. Meta Description tags are considered important as well. Meta Keywords tag can hurt.

3. Header Tags – Make sure you have the hierarchy intact. Do not have more than 1 H1 Tag.

H1 – Title of the Page

H2 – What’s on the page

4. Optimize images; alt tags, keywords in the title and filename.

 Favorite Plugins

TinyMCE Editor

Genesis Theme

 

WordCamp Miami 2014 Re-cap

WordCamp Miami 2014 was held during the weekend of May 9-11 at the University of Miami in Coral Gables.

The first day was a choice between a WordPress Beginners WorkShop vs BuddyPress Workshop. I opted for the latter, since I wanted to learn more about BuddyPress. The presenters kept the event alive with useful tidbits. They provided a good overview of BuddyPress and bbPress. The slides are informative and fun.

The next day was divided into three tracks. I was picking sessions based more on content than on the track. For example, the session on “How to Create a Killer Video” session was very nicely presented. All in just 15 minutes. I was clamoring for more info on the videos topic.

There was another presentation that stood out for me. This one was about how to change the WordPress Admin panel for small business owners. It was all done through small coding tricks, no hacks. Just clean programming to change the capabilities of users via code. This would cut down on the overwhelming number of choices in the Dashboard, if you are not familiar with WordPress.

WordPress tidbits

I recently attended the South Florida WordPress Developers Meetup in Davie. I wanted to re-cap some of the very useful pieces of tidbits that Michael Schofield presented at the meetup. He has a very easy way of presenting information. Michael does not hesitate to dig into the deep details of WordPress. I left the meetup feeling very happy armed with all the useful information he presented.

  1. You can create your own barebones theme by visiting underscores.me. This same website is also used to generate the base TwentyEleven, TwentyTwelve and TwentyThirteen themes that come bundled with the default install of WordPress. At a minimum, a theme can function with just 2 files: index.php and style.css. Michael did a great job at explaining each of the files with the theme. He dissected the code and did easy demos to explain how these files fit into the big picture.
  2. the_excerpt() function is used to display a 255 word excerpt of the blog post. However, this can be problematic if the post has a lot of non-text material in the beginning. An example could be images, special HTML formatting etc. In that case, you can use “get_the_excerpt()” alternatively. This function will strip out all the HTML before printing.
  3. How does WordPress determine which page to show? Here is a helpful infographic that shows how WordPress determines the correct template file to invoke. You can also find a simpler Black and White version of this Template Hierarchy at https://codex.wordpress.org/Template_Hierarchy
  4. For developers, a very useful tool that they can use for quick testing and validation: www.codepen.io. As Michael demonstrated the use of this tool live, I was fascinated with its power. Michael did a quick demo of how to create a Triangle using only CSS and also rotated the triangle. Very Cool indeed!
  5. Another very useful resource (one that I did not know existed) is the ability to test which CSS mechanisms are compliant with which browsers. www.caniuse.com to the rescue. THis will allow you to test which CSS clauses are compliant with each browser. A nice matrix shows you the answer easily.
  6. Also, dont forget the WordPress Codex.

Thanks to this meetup group, I was able to learn quite a few pieces of useful advice that we as developers find very pertinent. I will start using some of these resources in the future.

 

 

WordCamp 2014 Miami

Having successfully attended my first WordCamp late last year at WordCamp Orlando, I am a fan of these events. I am now looking forward to WordCamp Miami. It is the fifth anniversary event for WordCamp Miami. So this should be an event to remember. Here is the link to the website. The official dates are May 9, 10 and 11th.

Tickets will be available starting February. For more details, sign up on their mailing list.

I had written a post on my feedback from WordCamp Orlando here, so I hope WordCamp Miami can take some cues from this and incorporate this into their speaker presentations. While I understand Social Media and Buzz is important,  I think other WordPress specific issues have a broader impact, such as Security, Speed, scale-ability.