Envato https://envato.com Design & creative inspiration Fri, 21 Sep 2018 04:15:54 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.8 https://assets.wordpress.envato-static.com/uploads/2016/08/cropped-favicon-32x32.png Envato https://envato.com 32 32 5 Easy Steps to Increase Your WordPress Site Security https://envato.com/blog/getting-started-wordpress-security/ https://envato.com/blog/getting-started-wordpress-security/#respond Thu, 11 May 2017 22:47:24 +0000 http://envato.com/?p=44424 To help get you started with the basics of WordPress security and maintenance, we share five important beginner-friendly strategies and the best plugins for WordPress security.

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If there’s one thing that all advanced WordPress users agree on, it’s this: most webmasters don’t take website security and maintenance anywhere near seriously enough.

That’s right: Too many WordPress users take a reactive approach to security and maintenance. It’s something they only care about when something goes wrong. By that point, though, it’s often too late.

It isn’t hard to understand why this happens: many view website security and maintenance as a chore. If you’ve spent days, weeks, and months building your website, though, isn’t that time and effort worth proactively protecting?

I hope you answered that question with a resounding “Yes!,” as today I want to help get you started with the basics of WordPress security and maintenance, with five beginner-friendly strategies that you should all be implementing.

1. Backing Up Your Website

I’ve been using WordPress for a number of years now, and if I had to give one piece of advice to new users it would be this: Things go wrong. And when disaster strikes, you’ll save yourself a lot of heartache if you’ve backed up your website.

That’s right: creating backups of your website should be the number one priority. It’s the difference between losing months of hard work and being able to restore your website in a matter of minutes.

Backup and Clone Master

With so many competitively priced plugins and services out there, failing to backup your website just isn’t worth the risk. WordPress Backup and Clone Master plugin immediately spring to mind, but there are quite a few others worth looking at.

2. Installing Updates

You might think that the WordPress core, plugins, and themes are updated to add shiny new features. This is true to some extent, but most updates are primarily for patching up known security vulnerabilities.

Fortunately, WordPress is super-easy to update. Unfortunately, however, sometimes updates can cause compatibility problems which cause your website to break.

Quick Tip: set up a staging environment so that you can test out major site updates in a safe way. If the updates cause no issues in the staging environment, they’re safe to install on your main website.

To create a staging environment, simply clone your main website and put it on a subdomain. This can be achieved using the aforementioned WordPress Backup and Clone Master plugin.

3. Install a Security Plugin

Most webmasters don’t take website security anywhere near seriously enough. Don’t fall into that trap yourself: install a dedicated WordPress security plugin on your website.

Here’s a few more featured WordPress security plugins:

 

4. Hide WordPress

A quick scan through your website’s source files is often enough to identify where your website is weak. This is definitely not information you want falling into the hands of the bad guys, but unfortunately it’s readily available for those who know where to look.

For example, it’s relatively easy to find out which version of WordPress you’re using. Remember what we said about most updates being primarily concerned with patching up known problems? Well, if you’re not on the latest version, then I know that there are unpatched problems on your website. Worse still, it’s possible to find information on how to exploit the problems associated with earlier versions.

Hide my WP

One of the best ways to protect yourself against this is by using the Hide My WP plugin. The plugin removes all traces of WordPress from your website’s source code – including changing folder names for themes and plugins. This makes it far more difficult for hackers to identify vulnerabilities in your site’s source code.

5. Prevent Brute Force Attacks

Brute force attacks are the most common form of website security breach – it happens when attackers successfully guess your login credentials by guessing different combinations of username and passwords.

There are three main ways you can protect yourself from brute force attacks:

  • Use a secure username – most users choose a really obvious, unsecure username like ‘admin’.
  • Use a secure password – the more complex your password, the more difficult it is to crack. Use the free Strong Password Generator tool for help creating (almost) unhackable passwords.
  • Hide your login page – if the attackers can’t find your wp-login page, they can’t access your website. You can move your WordPress login page using the Hide My WP plugin.

A few minutes for invaluable security

Do you take your website’s security and maintenance seriously enough? This is important stuff, so if not, why not start today?

The five tips included in today’s post are all beginner-friendly and should take no more than a few minutes each month to implement. That’s right: it only takes a few minutes to ensure your website is healthy and running optimally.

These are a few of the top security plugins, as noted by our content specialists: Swift Security Bundle – Hide WordPress, Firewall, Code ScannerLogin NinjaHide My WP and Super Security – All in One WordPress Security

Featured image: Gudella. This article was originally published in 2016 and has been updated for 2017. 

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10 Things You Didn’t Know You Could Do with WordPress https://envato.com/blog/10-things-didnt-know-wordpress/ https://envato.com/blog/10-things-didnt-know-wordpress/#respond Tue, 07 Jun 2016 09:47:52 +0000 http://envato.com/?p=41168 Adding extra functionality to WordPress is as easy as installing a plugin. With literally thousands to choose from, there's some seriously awesome functionality available.

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Adding extra functionality to a WordPress website is as easy as installing a plugin. With literally thousands of plugins to choose from – both free and premium ones – I’m sure you already realize that there’s some seriously awesome WordPress functionality available.

Today I want to introduce you to ten WordPress functionalities you probably weren’t aware of – and the plugins that let you add these functions.

1. Invoicing

As any freelancer will tell you: the best day of the month is payday. For most freelancers, though, that payment doesn’t hit your bank account automatically – you’ll need to invoice your client for it. And let’s face it: invoicing is a real nuisance.

Advanced Client Manager plugin

If you hate invoicing, the Advanced Client Manager for WordPress plugin can make the process far more bearable. The plugin lets you create and send professional invoices right from your WordPress dashboard. Clients can pay using PayPal, and you can track any outstanding invoices from one convenient location.

As an advanced WordPress client manager, this plugin really lies up to its name. Beyond invoicing, this is a great all-round project management plugin, and comes highly recommended.

2. Social Content Locker

Want more social shares for your content? The Social Locker for WordPress plugin could be just what you’re looking for.

Social Locker

Content lockers are nothing new; they require visitors to make small payments to unlock premium, protected content. With a social content locker, social shares are the currency — payment takes the form of a Tweet, +1, or Like.

If your content is good, most visitors will see this as a fair trade-off. It’s an innovative way to drive more social shares, plus it’s a relatively small price to pay for visitors. The plugin supports a variety of social locker stylings, complete with gorgeous animations.

3. Front-end Editing

The WordPress dashboard feels like a second home to me. After all, it’s where I write all of my content. Before publishing, though, I need to make sure everything is formatted correctly for the front-end of my site. This is easy enough, but requires constant trips between the back- and front-end via the Preview button.

Live Composer

If you’d prefer to write content on the live, front-end version of your website, check out the WordPress Website Embedder – Live Composer Addon plugin — one of several front-end editors available on CodeCanyon.

4. WordPress Dashboard Theme

I, like many other WordPress users, spend hours each day in the WordPress dashboard – also referred to as the WordPress admin or WordPress backend. In version 3.8, the WordPress dashboard was given a significant facelift and looks all the better for it.

Forest Admin Theme

Even the dashboard’s improved aesthetics can get a little boring sometimes, though. If you want to give your dashboard a radical overhaul, you need the Forest Revolution WordPress Admin Theme. It won’t impact the live version of your website, but it will make the dashboard prettier.

5. WordPress Preloader

We all know that website speed is fundamentally important.

If you want to make a visitor’s (hopefully brief) wait more bearable, the PrettyLoader Flat Page Preloader for WordPress plugin could be just what you need.

PrettyLoader

PrettyLoader displays stunning, animated spinners while your website loads. In total there are 22 spinners to choose from and 5 stylish transition effects.

6. Price Estimator

For some products, pricing is super-straightforward – if you’re buying, say, a TV, you know exactly what you’re getting for the price. For web design projects, things are slightly more complicated: the final price tends to be based on a series of estimates.

Dealing with every prospective client yourself can be incredibly time-consuming. To weed out the time-wasters, use The WP Estimation & Payment Forms Builder plugin to provide ballpark estimates. That means you only spend time dealing with serious clients.

WordPress Estimator

The estimator interface looks stunning and can be fully customized so it looks the part. It uses sophisticated conditional logic, so you can accurately estimate the price of your client’s project, whatever its scope. You can even take down payments using PayPal.

7. Enhancing Credibility

Looking to turn your website into a client-generating machine? A great portfolio helps, but your service needs credibility, too. The awkwardly named Teams Logos Testimonials Locations for WordPress is a fantastic all-in-one plugin for this very purpose. The plugin lets you add client logo carousels, team profiles, and client testimonials to your website.

Team logos testimonials location plugin

The plugin is dubbed “the most complete company showcase plugin on CodeCanyon” and it’s hard to disagree: it supports five templates, beautiful CSS3 transition animations, ten color schemes, image effects, and adds loads of cool credibility-enhancing functionality to your website.

8. Parallax Effects

In my opinion, there’s nothing more eye-catching than a well-executed parallax effect. Lots of WordPress users seem to agree, and parallax seems to be in vogue at the moment.

The Parallaxer

In the past, parallax functionality depended on your theme, but not anymore. You can now add visually stunning parallax effects on any page of your website – even within blog posts – thanks to The Parallaxer WP plugin.

9. Live Chat

As any business owner will tell you: customer service is fundamentally important. Unfortunately, it’s often overlooked, especially by online businesses.

Adding an online chat feature to your website is a great way to provide real-time customer service – you can achieve this using the WP Flat Visual Chat plugin.

WP Visual Flat Chat

The plugin lets you man your live chat platform from within the WordPress dashboard. Chat operators can see what page a visitor is looking at, and can even share specific website elements to aid them.

10. Hover Animations

Looking to make your website more interactive? Then check out the Hover Effects Pack WordPress plugin.

WordPress Hover Pack

A functionality usually provided by a WordPress theme, this useful plugin lets you add one of ten eye-catching hover effects to your images. To provide additional information, you can also overlay text onto images, with ten different text animations to choose from.

Featured image: Gudella

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Trends & Ideas For Using Beautiful Imagery on The Web https://envato.com/blog/images-website/ https://envato.com/blog/images-website/#respond Sat, 07 May 2016 12:58:40 +0000 http://envato.com/?p=44647 We show you ten different ways you can use beautiful and authentic stock photography to make your web business stand out from the rest.

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Looking to craft a beautiful, stylish website? Of course you are! And, as you probably already know by now, images are an integral part of any website’s design.

Why are images so important? Well, even though content is king, it’s your images that instantly jump off the page. They make your website easy on the eye, they show the world what your business is all about, and they form a big part of your site’s overall first impression.

Want more? Well, studies have also shown that images can have a big impact on your bottom line, too — conversion rates can be impacted significantly by making subtle (or radical) changes to the images in use.

As such, images are kind of a big deal. And, for me at least, if you want professional looking images, you should look no further than high-quality stock photography.

This is because stock photography gives your average site owner access to a wider range of high-quality images – in terms of the photo’s subject, composition, and resolution – than would otherwise be available.

Today, however, I’m not here to talk about the benefits of using stock photography. I’m here to show you ten different ways you can use authentic stock photography on your website. Let’s get started.

1. Image Sliders

An image slider linking to your inner pages is one of the best ways to improve on-site navigation. And, because an image slider sits at the top of the homepage, it’s also one of your site’s most prominent visual elements and an important component of your website’s overall design.

As such, you don’t want just any old images cluttering up your image slider. Make sure your slider is filled with top quality stock photographs so that you create the best possible first impression.

traveler
Stock Image Source: Traveler by kitzstocker

Of course, it’s impossible for me to display a screenshot demonstrating a moving slider — why not check out the demo of the Dynamix theme instead, to see just how good image sliders can look in action.

2. Featured Images

In my opinion, not enough websites take full advantage of their posts’ featured images. I’m talking about the big, booming, visually stunning hero images that dominate the top of the page, set the right tone for the post, and create an instantly memorable impression on visitors.

Stock Image Source: Church on the island in mist at sunrise by dreamypixel
Stock Image Source: Church on the island in mist at sunrise by dreamypixel

In my opinion, more websites should be making their hero images the focal point of the site. It’s a great way to give your blog an instantly recognizable style, which visitors will recognize as synonymous with your brand.

Of course, by making your featured images so integral, you need to choose the right images. Breathtaking, high-resolution images are the order of the day, and, unless you’re a photographer using your own images, nothing beats the quality and range of stock images.

Oh, and if you do decide to use stunning featured images, you can also create beautiful content grids from them that look something like this:

Featured Image Grid

3. Header Images

If you’re looking to create an unbeatable first impression, pay close attention to the design of your website above the fold – after all, this is the part of your website that visitors will see first.

Displaying beautiful stock photography is a tried-and-tested way to create that golden first impression you’re looking for. By displaying a professional-grade photograph, you instantly look the part – credible, professional, and authoritative. X Theme has a gorgeous example of a header image.

Stock Image Source: Senior Craftsman by halfpoint
Stock Image Source: Senior Craftsman by halfpoint

It also gives the visitor an insight into your brand and what you’re all about – and with literally thousands of stock photos out there, it isn’t hard to find the right fit.

4. Fullscreen Background Image

If you want to add some color to your pages, nothing beats a good fullscreen background image. Not only does a huge background image make your site look instantly stylish, but choosing the right image can set the right tone and really enhance your brand – creative images for creatives, professional images for professionals, etc.

Stock Image Source: Bokeh by DHIN3Z
Stock Image Source: Bokeh by DHIN3Z

When you choose a fullscreen background image, resolution is important. If the image is too small it will look pixelated (which creates a hideous first impression), and tiling the background image belongs in the ’90s.

Fortunately, stock images come in the super-sized dimensions that make them well-suited to fullscreen backgrounds.

Another key advantage: changing your background image is a great way to mark key holidays, reflect the changing seasons, and just generally give your website a spruce up.

Want to see a great example of a fullscreen background image in action? Here you go then; another screenshot courtesy of X Theme.

Fullscreen Background

5. Within Content

Most people read blog posts primarily as a form of entertainment — they don’t want to feel like they’re back at school, reading a textbook. As such, you need to make your blog visually engaging.

Stock Image Source: Springbok in dust by JohanSwanepoel
Stock Image Source: Springbok in dust by JohanSwanepoel

And let’s face it, beautiful images are far easier on the eye than a screen full of text, right?

6. Parallax Scrolling

If you want your website etched in the minds of those who visit, you need to give visitors a reason to remember you. Great content is a part of this, of course, but don’t understate the importance of your site’s design — slick, eye-catching visual elements are a sure-fire way to impress visitors.

One of my favorite visual effects is parallax scrolling. Unfortunately, because of the moving parts I can’t demonstrate parallax with a screenshot, so here is a link to some great examples of websites using parallax. And, if you want a great WordPress theme that supports parallax scrolling, look no further than the excellent Brooklyn theme.

7. Social Images

We all know the benefits of social media by now, right? Good, so I’m guessing that you’d love to drive more traffic to your website via the social channels, too?

If you want more social clicks, you have to make your content as enticing as possible. This is how one of Envato Market’s blog posts appear on Twitter:

Social Media Images

As you can see, the post consists of two main elements. First, the text, which is undoubtedly important as it helps people decide whether the content is of interest to them.

Far more eye-catchingly, however, is the image, which dominates the social media post. Get the image part right by using stylish stock images and you can instantly experience an uplift in shares and clicks.

8. Adverts

Adverts are one of the most effective ways to drive traffic to your desired locations – this could be to your product pages, an advertiser’s website, or a website you have an affiliate relationship with.

Stock Image Source: Barber Shop by Nejron
Stock Image Source: Barber Shop by Nejron

Of course, for maximum effectiveness, your adverts need to be eye-catching and enticing – in other words, bold, bright, and beautiful. One of the best ways to create stylish, clickable adverts is to place a stock image as a background, then overlay this with compelling copy.

9. Infographics

An infographic is a visual representation of complex data, created with a primary aim of being shared and going viral. This is achieved in three main ways:

  1. Making the content super-informative.
  2. Presenting data in a way that’s easily digestible.
  3. By making the infographic aesthetically pleasing.

Although more commonly associated with vectors, you can also build infographics on top of stunning background images. And, because infographics need to be visually top-notch, if you are going to use a background image, look no further than a relevant, high-resolution stock photograph.

Here’s a great example of a stock image being used in an infographic, courtesy of FFunction.

Stock Image Infographics

10. eBooks

I’m sure you’ve heard it a thousand times: the money is in the list.

For over a decade, internet marketers have given top priority to growing an email list full of qualified subscribers. Intent is the easy part, though; getting visitors to hand over their email addresses is the hard part.

As a result, a lot of well-respected bloggers have talked about the best ways to optimize a website for conversions. One of the best-known strategies is to offer a sign-up incentive – the visitor receives something of value in exchange for their email address.

Stock Image Source: Top view of laptop and girl by happydancing
Stock Image Source: Top view of laptop and girl by happydancing

One of the most popular list-building incentives is the eBook. For this to work, though, you need a well-designed cover. These days, many marketers are using stock photographers for their eBook covers – it’s one of the easiest ways to craft a beautiful cover that oozes credibility, but without breaking the bank.

If you’re looking for a great way to make your website stand out from all the noise, using high quality and authentic stock photography can have such a big impact. And, as today’s post goes to show, there are lots of different ways you can use stock photography to enhance your website.

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10 of the Best Creative Portfolio Themes for WordPress https://envato.com/blog/creative-portfolio-themes-wordpress/ https://envato.com/blog/creative-portfolio-themes-wordpress/#respond Thu, 28 Apr 2016 10:28:50 +0000 http://envato.com/?p=44346 The WordPress portfolio themes featured today come in a variety of styles, but they’re all visually stunning and packed with all the functionality that your customers, fans, and clients will love.

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Are you a creative individual looking for the perfect portfolio theme to catapult your career into the big time? Look no further, as today I’m sharing 10 of my favorite WordPress portfolio themes. If you’re an artist, designer, or photographer, you’re in the right place.

The themes featured today come in a variety of styles, but they’re all visually stunning and packed with all the functionality that your customers, fans, and clients will love.

Salient

Salient is Envato Market’s best-selling creative portfolio theme of all time. No surprise really, as this theme is stunning – I strongly suggest that you check out the demo for yourself!

Salient ships with the developer’s exclusive slider, which produces eye-popping results. The full-screen slider provides the perfect platform for displaying your favorite images and even videos – it makes for a great first impression.

For creative individuals, your website’s primary purpose is to show off your portfolio, and Salient doesn’t disappoint. In fact, when it comes to customizing your portfolio, you’re spoilt for choice. For a start, there’re columned and full-width grids to choose between, with each option supporting plenty of different settings to play with. The theme also supports loads of eye-catching hover effects that really make your images pop.

A really superb theme, Salient also supports three icons sets, an extensive shortcode collection, and page builder functionality.

Salient

Mineral

The wonderfully stylish Mineral theme is another great option for anyone looking for a portfolio theme.

The theme complements a beautiful, modern design with lots of eye-catching imagery. This includes a gorgeous image slider, jaw-dropping parallax effects, and, of course, your portfolio galleries.

You can add images, content, and videos to your portfolio. These can be presented in five unique styles, each with plenty more customization options. My personal favorite is the masonry grid. The theme has customization galore, too, with a choice of unlimited colors, 600+ Google fonts, and portfolio hover effects.

Mineral

BigFormat

If you make a living from your images, it makes sense to display them in a way that makes the biggest possible impact. If this sounds like the effect you’re after, why not check out the BigFormat theme – a fantastic, full-screen portfolio theme that would best suit designers, artists, photographers, and videographers.

The homepage is dominated with an (almost) full-screen image slider, with just a small menu on the left-side of the screen – you can add videos to the slider, too.

This makes it one of the best ways to show potential clients what you’re all about, as well as giving your work the limelight it deserves. The theme also supports inner pages – including a blog, contact, and project pages – which sit on top of the background images when clicked.

BigFormat

Quantum

Minimal design more of your thing? Then check out the fantastic Quantum portfolio theme. The theme uses a beautiful, clean design, with lots of white space.

The theme supports everything a portfolio website could need. This starts with four beautiful portfolio layouts, complete with an elegant hover effect. So that your visitors can learn more about your work, you can also split your portfolio pieces between three post types – classic, case study, and full-screen photo gallery.

The theme is fully responsive, too, comes with a good selection of customization opportunities, and also supports several image/video slider styles.

Quantum

Daisho

If you want a theme that creates a professional image while still feeling cool, look no further than Daisho.

The bulk of your homepage is dedicated to your portfolio, giving your work the perfect platform. Visitors can switch between the stylish masonry grid view and a more formal classic gallery. Both options look great and also come with beautiful hover animations.

The theme also supports a blog, an interactive ‘Meet the Team’ slider page, and a functional contact page complete with Google Map.

Daisho

Story

Next up, we have the visually stunning Story theme.

This is the theme for those looking to make a killer first impression. The theme supports a gorgeous full-screen image slider, with eye-catching vertical transitions. Display your best work here and have prospective clients hooked from the get go. If the full-screen slider isn’t for you, there’s also a standard image slider.

To reflect the needs of modern creatives, the Story theme also supports an abundance of customization options. This includes unlimited colors, unlimited sidebars, and, most importantly, seven different layouts for displaying your portfolio in your preferred format.

Typography is also big part of this theme, and Story allows you to use any of the 600+ Google fonts. This is most noticeable on the image sliders, where you can overlay your own custom fonts – by using a distinctive font consistently, you can build an instantly recognizable brand for yourself.

The theme’s impressive list of features continues with built-in social buttons, WooCommerce compatibility, and mega menu support.

Story

Patti

Patti is a great theme for creative individuals, providing the perfect showcase for showing off your portfolio. The theme is a steal at $43, especially when you consider you get $79 of premium plugins bundled in.

This theme is big on style, with a gorgeous full-width image slider (courtesy of the Slider Revolution plugin), nifty parallax effects, and striking typography.

Best of all, the theme supports stunning galleries, allowing you to display your work in beautiful, mobile-friendly, masonry grids.

Patti

This Way

Now for something a little different: the bold and unique This Way theme.

The theme’s homepage is one big, full-screen image slider or video – you can also play background audio, too. This makes the theme one of the hippest you’ll find.

To navigate your website, This Way features a floating menu button. Click on it, and the menu will expand, giving your visitors all the navigation options. This allows you to link to a blog, contact page, and also a dedicated portfolio page.

Throw in built-in social buttons and stylish lightbox functionality and you’ve got one of the trendiest themes around.

This Way

Yin and Yang

Yin and Yang is the polar opposite of This Way. Gone are the flashy, ostentatious on-page elements, replaced with a tranquil, minimalist design – if you’d prefer to let your portfolio do the talking, this is the theme for you.

Yin and Yang lets you display your work in a beautiful, filterable gallery. If visitors want more information about an item, all they have to do is click on it.

As well as this, the theme supports six widget areas, threaded comments, and social sharing buttons.

Yin and Yang

Jarvis

Let’s round out today’s list with the bold and beautiful Jarvis theme.

There are twelve different homepage layouts to choose from, with each featuring striking typography. This is my favorite thing about this theme, as it gives you the opportunity to display brash, brand-enhancing slogans prominently.

The theme is rich with customization options, allowing you to craft something that’s truly unique. You can choose from unlimited colors, move sections around, and also display custom backgrounds for each section.

Jarvis is big on visuals, and the theme supports full-screen backgrounds, video backgrounds, and, my personal favorite, parallax effect. The theme is also MailChimp-friendly and includes over 240 Font Awesome icons.

Jarvis

Wrapping Up

With hundreds of great creative portfolio themes available on Envato, I couldn’t list them all. If you want to throw your favorite portfolio theme into the mix, let us know in the comments section below!

Featured image: tanouchka

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10 WordPress Themes Perfect for Your Small Business https://envato.com/blog/wordpress-themes-small-business/ https://envato.com/blog/wordpress-themes-small-business/#respond Wed, 23 Mar 2016 08:20:31 +0000 http://envato.com/?p=42449 These 10 Wordpress themes are ideal design solutions for your small business.

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Looking for the perfect WordPress theme for your small business website? Well, you’re in luck! Today, I want to share 10 of my favorite small business themes.

All themes included in this round-up are fully responsive, support a variety of customization options, and would suit businesses in a range of industries.

The7

Let’s kick things off with The7, a gorgeous, multi-purpose business theme. The7 comes packed with customization options: three design styles, four headers, and custom layouts courtesy of the Visual Composer plugin. This lets you craft a beautiful business website for just about any industry.

The theme also includes infinite colors, over 600 fonts, and 20 stylish skins. Throw in $99-worth of premium plugins, SEO optimization, and WooCommerce compatibility, and you have a fantastic all-rounder theme fit for any small business website.

The7

Food Truck

One of the coolest themes I’ve seen in a while, Food Truck is the ideal theme for any small, food-based business.

The theme’s biggest strength is its versatility. There are 20 stunning pre-built templates, each targeting a different food type – including ice cream, burgers, cupcakes, pizza, and sushi. Each template has a unique look and feel, depending on the type of food it’s targeting.

The theme supports all the restaurant-functionality you need, too, including WooCommerce compatibility and full-width Google Maps.

Food Truck

Bodega

Bodega is another beautiful, stylish, multi-purpose theme. The theme is flexible enough to be used in any industry – to prove this point, check out the 30 unique demos, with each targeting a very different type of business.

The theme supports plenty of premium functionality, including stylish animations, beautiful image sliders, and a drag-and-drop page builder. It’s also strong on customisation, with six header styles, hundreds of Google fonts, and four icon sets available.

If you’re torn between several of the demos, Bodega also lets you mix-and-match elements from each.

Bodega

Bokeh

Up next, the stylish, multi-purpose business theme, Bokeh. Although Bokeh supports multi-page websites, the one-page version is by far my favorite.

Visitors can navigate your website using a beautiful, responsive homepage grid, complete with stylish animations. You can build a dedicated portfolio, client, team, and testimonial pages, too, allowing you to craft a beautiful, built-for-purpose business website.

As far as customisation goes, there’s two skins, infinite colours, and custom typography.

Bokeh

Hipster

If you run a small creative agency, check out the Hipster theme.

The theme is incredibly stylish and uses lots of fun, quirky design elements – perfect for image-conscious creatives. It supports three color schemes and two layouts. It’s also big on images, with eye-catching image sliders and full-page backgrounds.

Hipster

Eight Degree

Wow, wow, wow! What else can you say about this one? Eight Degree is a stunning, one-page theme that would suit any small business website.

The theme comes packed with stylish visual elements (including my personal favorite, parallax effects). There’s also nine header styles, 1000+ Google fonts, infinite colors, team/testimonial sliders, and pricing tables. If you want to create a stellar first impression, look no further than Eight Degree.

Eight Degree

Peakaboo

From daycares to schools, Peakaboo is a bright, beautiful theme for any child-friendly business.

You can customize Peakaboo with custom typography and unlimited color schemes. The background image is undoubtedly the theme’s most important design element, and Peakaboo makes it super-easy to upload your own.

Peakaboo

Maktab

Not all business websites need to be loud and brash. Some brands are far more compatible with an elegant, minimal business theme — for example, Maktab.

Despite Maktab’s beautiful, clean appearance, the theme is surprisingly feature-rich. For a start, it can reel off an impressive list of customization options: unlimited colors, unlimited sidebars, custom widgets, 500 Google fonts, 600 icons, and two layouts. There’s also loads of important functionality included out-the-box, including social sharing buttons, Revolution Slider, and 80 shortcodes.

As a small business theme, Maktab supports five custom post types, too — pricing tables, team members, portfolio, clients, and testimonials.

Maktab

Health Medical Center

Health Medical Center is a beautiful, professional theme targeting small businesses in the medical field.

The theme’s design is all about professionalism — something we all expect from a healthcare professional’s website! It still manages to look stylish, though, as you can see from the screenshot above. Want to talk customization? The theme supports two layouts, six header styles, and three image resolutions.

Health Center

Dynamix

Now for the visually stunning, multi-purpose Dynamix theme. As with most multi-purpose themes, Dynamix is compatible with any industry — whether you’re looking for a fitness, restaurant, or corporate website, Dynamix has your back.

The theme is heavy on images, with a stunning image slider, gorgeous parallax effects, and stylish image galleries. It also supports all the customization, custom widgets, and extra functionality a small business owner needs.

Dynamix

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Comprehensive Guide to Improving WordPress Speed https://envato.com/blog/wordpress-speed/ https://envato.com/blog/wordpress-speed/#respond Tue, 22 Mar 2016 10:36:19 +0000 http://envato.com/?p=40278 Slow load times kill your website's hopes of success. Not only is website speed an important component of SEO (which will impact how many visitors you get), but it also impacts your conversion rate.

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Slow load times kill your website’s hopes of success. Not only is website speed an important component of SEO (which will impact how many visitors you get), but it also impacts your conversion rate. More traffic and a better conversion rate means more profit – and potentially a lot more.

So, now we know why you should want a lightning quick website, it’s time to look at how to get it. Today I want to share six speed optimization tips for WordPress users, to knock seconds off your site’s load time.

How effective can these tips be? I recommend analyzing your website using a free tool such as Pingdom or Google PageSpeed Insights to test your site’s load speed. Run the test before and after you make the changes so you can see just how much time you’ve saved.

A Good Host

Managed Hosts

As much as we’d like to think we have complete control over our website’s performance, speed optimization starts with your web host. If speed is important to you – and it should be – I’d advise you not to skimp on your hosting provider.

Now, I’ve got nothing against a $5 shared hosting plan. In my opinion, these services are fine for a hobbyist looking to become familiar with WordPress. Do they provide the solid foundations for a successful, sustainable online business, though? Unfortunately not.

A server has a finite set of resources, and every website sharing that server will deplete those resources. The more websites you share with, the fewer the resources left for your site – and those resources aren’t allocated equally.

Shared hosting services are so economical, simply because of the huge volume of websites you’ll be sharing the server with, bringing the cost per site down substantially. However, all those websites are then competing with you for server resources, and this slows down every single website on that server.

Shared hosting isn’t looking so good now, is it?

Install a Content Delivery Network (CDN)

CDN

Typically, your website is hosted on one server. That means one fixed, physical location. Now, although it seems like everything happens instantaneously in the online world, this isn’t the case. The larger the physical distance between someone trying to access your website and your server, the longer it takes for your website to load.

Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) solve this problem by hosting your website on servers located all over the world. Now when someone tries to access your site, they will connect to the server closest to them. By reducing the physical connection distance, latency is reduced, and your website loads faster.

There are free CDN services out there, most notably CloudFlare, and premium services like MaxCDN.

Install a Caching Plugin

Caching Plugins

Most people know a caching plugin is a good way to improve load times. This is absolutely correct, but only if that caching plugin is configured correctly. Rather than loading every element of your website from scratch for each visitor, a caching plugin stores a static, HTML version of your website. Every time a new visitor accesses your website, this static version is fed to that visitor. This can save huge amounts of time, with no impact on quality.

The two most popular caching plugins available today are W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache. However, don’t think that installing and activating one of these plugins is enough – they need to be properly configured.

If you want more information on configuring W3 Total Cache click here, and for configuring WP Super Cache click here.

Optimize Images

WP Smush It

Images are an important component of any successful websites: they’re eye-catching, break up the monotony of too much text, and can enhance your content’s main points. Images are also one of your website’s “heavier” elements – an image’s file size is far greater than a paragraph of text.

I would recommend using images in moderation, plus ensuring your images aren’t too large. Generally, I aim for images smaller than 100kb.

You can cut down a lot of file size by re-sizing or cropping your images until they’re the size you want to display them at. You can do this from within the WordPress dashboard, by going to Media > Library, selecting the image you want, then clicking Edit Image. You can also use a free photo editing web-app like Pixlr.

Using a form of lossless compression will further reduce your image’s file size – lossless compression removes the unnecessary parts of the image like the meta data, resulting in a smaller file size but no noticeable loss of quality. The go-to plugin for lossless compression is WP Smush.it – Smush.it automatically “smushes” newly uploaded images, plus you can go back to compress your entire media library.

If you would like to learn more about optimzing your images for the web, you should have a look at this post: Image Performance Tips For Authors.

Use GZip Compression

Your website’s absolute file size is one of the biggest limiting factors on speed. All things being equal, an 800kb website will take longer to load than a 500kb website – makes sense, right?

However, that doesn’t mean there isn’t a way to bring your site’s file size down. We’ve already talked about reducing file size by using smaller images, but now I want to talk about GZip compression.

GZip compression can reduce the file size of your website’s content and stylesheet by as much as 70%. This can result in a much faster load speed and reduced bandwidth use. There are a number of ways to activate GZip compression, but in my opinion, installing a WordPress plugin is the easiest as you don’t have to go anywhere near your .htaccess file.

To activate GZIP compression, simply install and activate the GZip Ninja Speed Compression plugin.

Use Fewer Plugins

P3

With so many cool plugins available on CodeCanyon, it’s easy to get carried away – I’m guilty of this myself, too. However, plugins add to your website’s load times, and some more than others.

If you’ve committed to sit down to improve your site’s load time, this is the perfect opportunity to consider how much value each plugin adds to your website. If it’s not doing much, get rid of it.

Taking this one step further, consider adding the Plugin Performance Profiler (P3) plugin to your website – you can remove it when you’re done. P3 isolates each plugin to tell you how much additional load time each plugin adds.

Not only is this a great way to spot plugins that slow your site down way too much, you could also use it to compare like-for-like plugins to see which is quicker – for example, finding the quickest social sharing plugin.

It’s time to understand that speed is fundamentally important for WordPress users – in fact, it’s right up there with a functional (and aesthetically pleasing) website design and producing high quality content.

Speed optimization is a complicated topic, and an ongoing process. However, the six tips today are easy to implement, and can knock significant chunks of time off an unoptimized website. If you care about your visitors’ experience of your website, make speed a priority and reap the rewards.

 

Feature image: garloon

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10 Fantastic WordPress Themes For Building an eCommerce Site https://envato.com/blog/wordpress-themes-ecommerce-site/ https://envato.com/blog/wordpress-themes-ecommerce-site/#respond Wed, 09 Mar 2016 04:05:39 +0000 http://envato.com/?p=42491 Thanks to WordPress, millions of people can easily sell online, so today, I want to take a look at some of the best WordPress themes that make this possible.

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Thanks to WordPress, millions of people sell things online. Today, I want to look at the WordPress themes that make this possible: eCommerce themes.

To add eCommerce functionality to your website, you’ll need to install the free WooCommerce plugin. For those unfamiliar with WooCommerce, the plugin lets you create product pages, adds a working basket/checkout to your website, and handles customer payments.

To avoid repetition, all ten themes are fully WooCommerce compatible. Grab your favorite theme, install WooCommerce, and start selling!

Blaszok

Let’s kick things off with one of my favorite eCommerce themes, Blaszok. Blaszok has the distinction of being ThemeForest’s fastest selling eCommerce theme of all time — quite the accolade!

Words can’t quite do this theme justice; for that, I’ll have to refer you to the demos. The Blaszok developers have built an impressive 22 unique demos for their theme. If you like what you see, you can install any of the demos on your own website with Blaszok’s groundbreaking one-click installation feature.

Blaszok

Want more? The theme supports endless customizations, custom typography, 35 header layouts, nine custom post types, 45 shortcodes, and over 400 vector icons. And we’re still not done: For just $58, Blaszok includes $139-worth of premium plugins.

Overall, a very good eCommerce theme, Blaszok is highly recommended.

Mr. Tailor

If you’re looking to sell high-end fashion and lifestyle products, Mr. Tailor could be just what you need. The theme has a distinct masculine quality, and this makes it best suited to selling male-focused products.

Mr Tailor

When it comes to premium fashion, branding is everything. With this in mind, Mr. Tailor has plenty of customization options for building the brand you want. You can customize just about everything: logos, images, color schemes, and typography. As well as this, Mr. Tailor boasts stunning parallax effects, one-click installation, off-canvas filters/cart, and wish list functionality.

If you want to sell with style, look no further than Mr. Tailor.

Retro

Next up we have Retro, a gorgeous, vintage eCommerce theme. The theme has a slightly quirky design and feel to it. It comes with five uber-stylish pre-built skins — these are fully customizable, though, with a choice of unlimited colors.

My favorite thing about this theme is the stylish product grids, which can be configured to display anywhere between 2-6 products per row.

Retro

Eco Recycling

With its bold typography, striking parallax effects, and clean design, Eco Recycling is a truly stunning eCommerce theme. As the name implies, the theme targets ecology and recycling. From an eCommerce perspective, it could be used to sell any green or organic products.

Eco Shop

As simple as it sounds, it’s the typography that makes this theme stand out, which complements the soft tones perfectly. You can also use the Slider Revolution plugin to craft a stunning image slider for that perfect first impression.

Kallyas

Kallyas is a visually stunning, multi-purpose eCommerce theme. As such, it can be used to sell just about any product imaginable — as demonstrated by the demo.

The theme supports plenty of customization options, allowing you to build a unique website for your brand. There’s unlimited header layouts, infinite colors, dark/light skins, and multiple portfolio layouts. If you want more customization, the theme includes the best-selling Visual Composer plugin, too, with 69 on-page elements. For extra usability, the theme supports one-click installation.

Kallyas

Bazar Shop

Many eCommerce themes are too concerned with looking cool and adding flashy elements. An eCommerce store’s primary focus, however, should be selling products. Enter Bazar Shop.

Bazar

Bazar Shop makes your products the focal point, with product galleries dominating the homepage. The theme still manages to look incredibly stylish, though, and you can strengthen your brand with image sliders and header images. To help you sell more products, the theme supports two checkout pages, a catalogue mode, and a pop-up plugin for pushing your promotions.

Organic Shop

Organic Shop is another theme targeted at organic product sellers. The theme uses a clean and modern design, which you can customize with unlimited color schemes and Google font integration. For usability, there’s easy-configure home/contact pages, too.

If you’re in the organic industry, this could be the perfect theme for you.

Organic Shop

North

Next up we have North, an effortlessly stylish eCommerce theme. The theme is relatively versatile, but would probably suit fashion stores best, as the demo proves.

North makes a stunning first impression with a full-page, interactive image slider. The product pages look awesome, too, with a large header image and clean product galleries.

North

North supports one-click installation, pop-ups, and wish list functionality. For even more functionality, the theme’s $63 price tag includes $131 worth of premium plugins.

Flatsome

Like Bazar Shop, Flatsome lets your products take center stage on your website. This makes the theme a super-effective selling machine.

The homepage is just the right mix of eye-catching imagery — courtesy of the full-width image slider — and product listings. The theme supports Pinterest-style product galleries, wish lists, and custom cart icons. A nice-looking theme with all the functionality an eCommerce store needs.

Flatsome

Enfinity

We round out today’s post with the beautiful Enfinity theme.

The most distinctive part of the theme’s design is undoubtedly the full-screen background. This background image is fully customizable, as is the theme’s color scheme — there’s also five stylish pre-built skins included. To top things off, the theme also supports loads of shortcodes, eye-catching image galleries, and Mega Menus.

Enfinity

With literally hundreds of WooCommerce-compatible themes, it would be impossible to list them all.

The ten featured themes today are by no means the ‘best’ — that’s far too subjective — but are simply some of my favorites. If you feel like disagreeing with me, share your favorite eCommerce themes in the comments below!

 

Featured image: Bloomua

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How to Quickly Add & Edit Beautiful Images within WordPress https://envato.com/blog/beautiful-images-wordpress/ https://envato.com/blog/beautiful-images-wordpress/#respond Mon, 26 Oct 2015 03:10:48 +0000 http://envato.com/?p=43711 We show you the easiest way to add and edit stunning Unstock images to your website using the Image Elevator for WordPress Plugin.

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Serious website owners spend hours perfecting their website’s appearance, agonizing over the right theme, plugins, logo, and color scheme. This is important stuff, too: an aesthetically pleasing website creates a great first impression, and that makes visitors more likely to spend time — and money — on your website.

But there’s one element of your site’s design, perhaps more than any other, that can make a good-looking website look great: Beautiful images.

Images really can make or break a website. To prove my point, take a look at any WordPress theme demo. Most theme developers pick high-quality stock images, like those found on Unstock, to enhance their theme’s main features. That’s why they look so visually impressive, and that’s one of the differences well-chosen images can make.

Today, I want to show you the easiest way to add stunning Unstock images to your website using the Image Elevator for WordPress Plugin.

Image Elevator Plugin

Now, as WordPress users will know, WordPress already makes it relatively easy to upload and insert images. So why am I recommending a plugin?

Well for a start, Image Elevator makes it quicker and easier to upload images – a simple copy-and-paste job. Beyond that, it’s also an effective tool for cropping, resizing, and compressing your images.

Sound good? Then let me show you how to use the Image Elevator Plugin.

Getting Started

Before we can use the plugin, we need to install it. From the WordPress dashboard, navigate to Plugins > Add New > Upload Plugin. Select the Image Elevator ZIP file from your hard drive, then click Install Now > Activate Plugin.

Next, you’ll need to register the plugin. From the WordPress dashboard, head over to Image Elevator. In the blank field, paste your license key, then click Submit Key.

The whole installation, activation, and registration process should take no more than a few minutes, then you’re ready to use the plugin straight away.

Want to see what the plugin can do? Then allow me to demonstrate the plugin’s five main functions.

Pasting Local Images

The WordPress default procedure for uploading and inserting images into a post is super-easy. It does, however, involve multiple steps — open the WordPress Editor, click Add Media > drag-and-drop your image to upload it > click Insert into Post.

Image Elevator makes it as simple as copying and pasting. Find your image on your hard drive, then click Ctrl+C to copy it.

Copying Local Image

Next, head to your WordPress editor, and press Ctrl+V to paste. The image is immediately added to your content, and uploaded to your media library for re-use.

Pasting Local Image

Yup, it’s that easy!

Pasting Screenshots

You can also use Image Elevator to paste screen grabs directly into the WordPress Editor – this is a useful feature for anyone who uses screenshots in tutorials, like me.

To take a screenshot, Windows users simply press PrtSc. Mac users need to press Command (⌘)-Shift-4.

Next, press Ctrl+V to paste it into the WordPress editor, and away you go!

Image Elevator Paste Screenshot

Pasting Regions – How to Quickly Crop Images

This next feature is by far my favorite.

Before I use an image in my post, I need to make sure it’s cropped down to the right size. Image Elevator can save you loads of time by allowing you to paste “regions” of an image.

Simply open up your favorite image editing software – for example, Photoshop or Paint – and highlight the part of the image you want to add to your content.

Cropping Image

Then, copy and paste it directly into the editor.

Pasting Cropped Image

Neat, huh? And, if you’re forever cropping your images, this feature is a real time-saver.

Image Compression

Beautiful, high-resolution images have relatively large file sizes, and this can slow your website down. Many website owners see this as a small price to pay for a visually stunning website, though — the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. That doesn’t mean you should take a gung-ho approach to adding images, however.

In the past I’ve talked at length about how to speed up your WordPress website. In particular, I recommended using lossless compression to reduce image file size without losing quality, thus keeping the additional baggage to a minimum. By reducing your images’ file size, you’ll ensure your website is as quick as it can be.

In that post, I recommended WPSmush.it as a great image compression plugin. Well, Image Elevator is a viable alternative, supporting its own image compression functionality.

To use Image Elevator’s image compression function, navigate to the WordPress Editor – Posts > Add New. At the top of the screen, next to the Add Media button, you’ll see the Image Elevator icon.

Image Elevator icon

Click this icon to bring up the settings pop-up.

Image Elevator Settings

Next, you need to click to activate Image Compression. This will open up two more options.

In the first field, specify the compression threshold. In other words, any images above your specified threshold are automatically compressed when uploaded. If you want all images compressing, make sure you specify a really small file size – for example, 1kb.

In the second field, choose the JPEG quality — the lower the quality, the smaller the file size. It’s up to you how much quality you’re willing to sacrifice to reduce file size, but I recommend somewhere around 80-85%. This keeps your file small with no noticeable drop in quality.

Image Elevator compression settings

When you’re done, simply click Update Rules. The plugin will automatically compress any images that meet your specified criteria.

Resize Images

You can also use Image Elevator to resize images.

For example, if your website maximum layout is only 800 pixels wide, there’s little point in uploading images that are 1000 pixels wide. Oversized images carry excess weight, plus they increase the burden on your server, which has to resize the images in order to display them correctly.

Fortunately, Image Elevator can help with this, by configuring maximum image dimensions. If an image exceeds the dimensions, the plugin will shrink it down to a more appropriate size.

To configure the resizing functionality, you need to click on the Image Elevator icon again, then activate Image Resizing.

Next, you’ll be given space to specify your maximum image dimensions.

Image Elevator Resize configuration

The more important question is how your images are resized.

If you want to maintain your images proportions, leave the Crop to fit box unticked — this will simply scale the image down to your desired dimensions. In my opinion, this is the best option, as your image will look the same, just smaller.

Resize image

If you decide to tick the Crop to fit option, the plugin will auto-crop the image.

A word of caution: the auto-crop is applied from the center of the image, and this means important parts of the image may be cropped out.

Compare the auto-cropped image below with the resized image above. As you can see, the images look very different, so choose your settings wisely.

Image Elevator Auto-crop

Final Thoughts

If you want to quickly and easily upload images to a WordPress plugin, the Image Elevator plugin adds some really innovative functionality – you can effortlessly crop, resize, and compress beautiful images.

Best of all, however, is the copy-and-paste functionality, allowing you to instantly insert local images, screenshots, and smaller sections of images. The plugin is really easy to use, and comes highly recommended. You can grab it here.

Photo credit: Janne_Amuney

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How to Create a Custom Login Page in WordPress https://envato.com/blog/custom-login-page-wordpress/ https://envato.com/blog/custom-login-page-wordpress/#respond Thu, 10 Sep 2015 23:00:09 +0000 http://envato.com/?p=45349 A custom login page is an excellent way to create a great first impression, plus it reinforces your branding.

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You probably haven’t given much thought to the default WordPress login page. After all, it’s simple, functional, and it works – what more needs to be said?

Because it does its intended job, for the casual WordPress user, there is no pressing reason to change it. If, however, you want to create a login page for a client’s website or your members, the boring, default option just doesn’t cut it.

A custom login page is an excellent way to create a great first impression, plus it reinforces your branding. It’s also relatively easy to redesign, but your clients will love you for going the extra mile.

The best way to redesign the WordPress login page is with a plugin – and today, I’m going to be showing you how to use Envato Market’s Custom Login & Access WordPress Plugin. As well as creating a new, custom login page, the plugin also supports basic membership website functionality, making it great value at just $20.

Login and Access WordPress Plugin


Getting Started

As always, let’s start with installation.

To install the Custom Login and Access WordPress Plugin, navigate to Plugins > Add New > Upload Plugin. Hit Browse, then find the relevant .zip file before clicking Install Now > Active Plugin.

Easy-peasy.


Customizing Your Login Pages

The plugin’s main purpose is to re-style and re-brand the default WordPress login page, so let’s start with that. Head to Settings > PA Login & Access, then scroll down to the Styling section.

Styling Login Screen

I’m sure we’re all familiar with it, but let me remind you of what the default WordPress login screen looks like.

Default WordPress Login Screen

Now it’s time to get to work!

By adding an image to the Login Image field, you can swap the WordPress logo with your own.

Custom Logo Login

You can also change the background colors or upload a full-screen background image if you’d prefer.

Custom Logo and Background Login

The other fields allow you to change the form, text, and button colors, with a choice of infinite colors. When finished, hit Save Changes for a completely overhauled login screen.

Custom Login Page

The changes are really easy to make – to see them applied, you will have to keep refreshing your browser, though.


Access Control

You can also use PA Login & Access to restrict access to member content. This means that the plugin effectively doubles up as a basic membership plugin.

Content restrictions are controlled from the Access Control section of the PA Control & Access screen. You can choose to authorize all content, block all content, or choose specific restrictions.

If you decide to restrict on an individual basis, the plugin splits the content between posts and pages. You can choose the restricted content from a drop-down list, or you can restrict entire categories.


User Registration

To help grow member numbers, PA Control & Access encourages users to sign up for your website (more on this later). Within the settings screen, you have the opportunity to configure several sign-up settings.

This includes enabling a Math Captcha to restrict access from unwanted bots and also enabling an auto-generated strong password for users – the alternative is to let them pick their own.

Login form settings

Further down, there’s a section called Registration Email. This section is self-explanatory and allows you to write the welcome email all new registrants will receive.


Shortcodes, Widgets, and Menus

When it comes to building a membership website, there are three important pages that your members must be able to access – login, registration, and forgotten password.

To improve access to your website, PA Control & Access allows you to insert links to these pages throughout your site.

For a start, the plugin enables you to add these pages to your navigation menus. Just navigate to Appearance > Menus. By default, the plugins functionality is hidden, so click Screen Options in the top-right corner, and then check the box next to PA Modal Link.

From here, you can use the menu builder’s drag-and-drop interface to add Login/Logout and Registration pages.

Login Menu Settings

The other option you have is to use shortcodes, which also allows you to drop links to your membership pages into any widget areas supported by your theme. You can use shortcodes to add the links anywhere throughout your content, too.

All you need to do is paste one of the following shortcodes where you want your link to appear:

  • Login page: [pa_login]
  • Registration page: [pa_register]
  • Lost password page: [pa_forgotten]

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re just looking to have some fun with your WordPress login page, impress clients, or reinforce your branding, the Custom Login & Access WordPress Plugin has you covered. In just a few minutes, and with no more than a few clicks, you can customize every aspect of your login page.

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How to Make a Passive Income with the Amazon Affiliate WordPress Plugin https://envato.com/blog/amazon-affiliate-wordpress-plugin/ https://envato.com/blog/amazon-affiliate-wordpress-plugin/#comments Tue, 08 Sep 2015 23:00:20 +0000 http://envato.com/?p=45635 Many top internet marketers earn good money by creating niche Amazon affiliate websites - here's how to set one up.

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Most bloggers will tell you that affiliate commissions are a great way to monetize a blog. It doesn’t have to be the primary monetization method, but it’s an extra weapon in your arsenal to maximize profits.

And, if you do commit to earning affiliate commissions, you’ll be interested in learning that the world’s most popular affiliate scheme is, you guessed it, Amazon’s. Affiliates earn a respectable 4-8.5% per sale, but the main draw is the volume of products available to promote and the well-respected Amazon name driving sales.

In fact, many top internet marketers earn good money by creating niche Amazon affiliate websites. If you want to add your name to this list, I recommend downloading Envato Market’s WooCommerce Amazon Affiliates plugin.

WooCommerce Amazon Affiliates Plugin

The plugin allows you to add any Amazon products to a WooCommerce website – as such, the plugin requires that the WooCommerce plugin is installed and activated. When a visitor attempts to purchase one of these products, they’re redirected to Amazon, and you earn an affiliate commission.

Sound good? Well, today I want to show you how easy it is to use WooCommerce Amazon Affiliates to setup and monetize your next niche website.


Getting Started

Before we can use the plugin’s functionality, we need to install it.

This is done the same way as any other plugin. All you need to do is login to the WordPress dashboard and then navigate to Plugins > Add New > Upload Plugin. Click Browse… to search your hard-drive, select the relevant .zip folder, and then click Install Now > Activate Plugin.

The next task is to configure the plugin with your Amazon account. To do this, head to WooZone > Configuration > Amazon config. You will then need to login to your Amazon Web Service account to retrieve your Access Key ID, Secret Access Key, and also your Affiliate ID for each territory. When done, hit the Check Amazon AWS Keys button. A few seconds later, you’ll see a confirmation that your account was able to connect. Finally, click the Save the Settings button.

With this task complete, you’re good to go.


Bulk Product Upload

If you want to earn Amazon affiliate commissions, first you’ll need some products to promote. Fortunately, WooCommerce Amazon Affiliates makes it super-easy to add Amazon products to your website – either individually or in bulk.

The easiest way to do this is by heading to WooZone > Import Products > Advanced Search.

WooZone Bulk Import

Search for your keywords, then Amazon will return hundreds of products in your niche. Select the ones you want, and then click Import Products.

WooZone Bulk Import List

This takes a few minutes, depending on how many products you select, as the plugin has to download all relevant images for each product. The plugin will also download the sales description, product variations, categories, and customer reviews straight from Amazon.

Importing Products

With the downloads complete, you’ll be able to see all your imported products by navigating to the Products section of your dashboard.

Imported Products

These products are published to your WooCommerce store as usual, and when customers try to buy one of the products, they will automatically be referred to Amazon with your affiliate code attached.

If you’d prefer to upload specific products, you can do so by importing a CSV file listing your product’s ASIN codes.


Amazon Content Spinner

eCommerce store owners are regularly advised about how important it is to write your own sales descriptions – in terms of boosting SEO and converting more customers.

Unfortunately, writing hundreds of sales descriptions is a time-consuming task that many store owners conveniently overlook. If you fall into this category, you’ll love this next feature: Amazon Content Spinner.

To access this awesome time-saver, navigate to WooZone > Product Import > Amazon Content Spinner. You will then have the option to “spin” content for any of your uploaded Amazon products.

Amazon Content Spinner

Simply click the SPIN Content Now! button and the plugin will automatically generate a unique sales description based on the original Amazon description. If you dislike the descriptions, you can click to undo it and restore the original one.

When you’re happy, the newly generated description is automatically published on your product pages.


Amazon Analytics

As any eCommerce store owner will tell you, it’s useful to know what your best performing products are. To assist with this, WooCommerce Amazon Affiliates also supports an advanced analytics functionality.

To access this, click through to WooZone > Plugin Status > Product Stats.

You will see a list of your imported Amazon products, as well as a few key statistics for each one: number of hits, times added to cart, and number of times redirected through to Amazon.

Product Stats

You can also view a summary of your top products by navigating to the plugin dashboard, simply by clicking WooZone.

This is the quickest way to identify the best-performing products, which you can then feature more prominently on your site.


Front-end Users

So far, I’ve demonstrated how easy it is to use the plugin from the WordPress back-end. Just as important, however, is how the plugin looks at the front-end — as seen by your visitors.

Well, there’s lots of good news: the plugin seamlessly integrates the Amazon affiliate products with the rest of your WooCommerce storefront. There is nothing to indicate to visitors that you don’t stock the products yourself, and visitors won’t be able to tell the difference.

WooCommerce Amazon Storefront

Visitors can click through to specific product pages. This is where they can view the product description, images, reviews, and product specs the plugin downloaded directly from Amazon.

WooCommerce Amazon Product Page

If they like what they see, they can utilize the WooCommerce functionality to add products to their shopping cart. When they attempt to checkout, however, they are redirected to Amazon.

WooCommerce Amazon Redirect

The products are automatically added to the Amazon cart, with your affiliate code attached. The customer can then proceed to checkout using Amazon’s standard checkout process. Of course, when they do this, you get paid!

WooCommerce Amazon Checkout

Quick, easy, and effective.


Final Thoughts

The WooCommerce Amazon Affiliates is a great way to run an online business with minimal risk. You don’t have to worry about purchasing stock; you can simply list Amazon products, then earn a slice of the action.

If you’re interested in building a niche affiliate website, I strongly recommend downloading the plugin. It’s super-easy to use, saves heaps of time, and allows you to put together a website that really maximizes affiliate commissions.

Featured image: payphoto

The post How to Make a Passive Income with the Amazon Affiliate WordPress Plugin appeared first on Envato.

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