20 Specialty WordPress Themes

One of the primary reasons that WordPress is the platform of choice for most bloggers is the incredible variety of themes that are available for its users. With thousands of existing free and premium themes to choose from (and plenty of designers willing to create custom themes), there is no need to settle for a one-size-fits-all solution.

There are a growing number of specialty WordPress themes available that have been designed for specific industries or for specific types of websites. These specialty themes in combination with the CMS capabilities of WordPress provide businesses, website owners, and bloggers new and improved opportunities to quickly and easily build and manage an effective website with substantially lower costs than just about any other option.

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Common Reasons a Website is Unsuccessful

If you are planning or building a new website, you are obviously hoping for some type of success. Of course, success can mean any number of things, and each website’s success should be determined by the needs and desires of its owners and creators. Some websites exist strictly to provide information to visitors. Others aim to sell products. Some exist solely to provide information about the services of a business. As you can see, there is no one equation for success online, but there are a number of common causes for failure with a website. Here is a look at ten possible things that can keep you from achieving anything significant with a website.

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Color Schemes from Photographs

Earlier this week I posted a gallery of colorful websites. Today I’d like to take a look at a few online tools that can help you to generate a color scheme for your website by taking the colors from a photograph. When designing a new website, color inspiration can come from just about anywhere. Photographs can often be an effective source of color inspiration, and if you find this to be the case for your designs, there are some tools that can help even more.

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11 Ways to Gain Exposure as a Web Designer

As a web designer you may be faced with the challenge of getting your work and your abilities in front of others. If this is the case, here is a list of 11 different things you can do to get noticed.

1. Submit Your Designs to CSS Galleries

CSS galleries display high-quality designs, and you can submit yours to be considered for inclusion. The leading CSS Galleries (CSS Beauty, CSS Vault, CSS Drive, etc.) have huge audiences that will see your work if it is included. Additionally, there are a number of specialty galleries, such as Light on Dark, eduStyle, No Resolution, and The Horizontal Way.

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Announcing the Launch of Traffikd

I’m happy to announce that today I launched a new blog that focuses on internet marketing and social media marketing, Traffikd. The reason behind the new blog is a desire to write more about some different topics that aren’t covered as frequently here. I don’t anticipate that it will in any way affect the content or frequency of posting here, as this blog remains my priority. There will probably be about 3 or 4 posts per week at Traffikd, so if the topic interests you, I would love to have you as a subscriber (you can click here for the feed).

Traffikd screen shot

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Giving Your Website an SEO Check-Up

Search Engine Optimization is a common concern/priority when building a new website. However, it sometimes receives little attention after the site has been up and running for a while. For website owners and bloggers alike, it can be worthwhile to do a routine check-up on the SEO health of your site periodically. Here are 10 things you can do to help identify potential improvements that can lead to higher rankings and more search engine traffic.

1. Find and Fix Dead Links

Finding dead links on a website can be time-consuming and annoying if you try to do it manually. Dead-Links.com is a free online tool that will crawl your website and search for dead links. Once you know where the dead links are, you can easily correct them.

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10 Realities of Designing Websites for Clients

As a designer, working for clients is much different than designing a site for yourself. There are obviously pros and cons, but here are ten things that I have found to be true.
1. No Two Clients are the Same

Some clients will know exactly what they want and they will expect you to create it precisely in that manner. Others will have no clue what they want and they’ll leave most decisions up to you. Some clients will be a pleasure to work with, others will make you want to pursue a different career. Each client will be unique and will present new challenges and present new opportunities.

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23 Resources for Clean and Compressed CSS

There are a number of free online tools that can help you to create and maintain effective CSS coding. These tools include validators, optimizers, compressors and more. Try out a few of these tools and see how they can help you to keep more efficient style sheets.


CSS Tidy is an open source CSS parser and optimizer from SourceForge. It is available as an executable file, and there is also an online version. CSS Tidy is often able to achieve a compression ration of 30% or more. In addition to compression, CSS Tidy can also format CSS code for higher browser compatibility.

CSS Tidy Screen Shot

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5 Steps to a More Engaging Website

The internet has become a very interactive environment for users. Websites need to be specifically built in a way that captures the attention of visitors and keeps them coming back, or they will quickly leave to go somewhere else. Here are 5 steps to creating a website that will effectively engage your visitors.

1. Avoid Clutter

By keeping your design free of clutter, you will make it easier for visitors to know what is most important, and there will be nothing else to distract them. Clutter can be excessive advertisements, images that don’t add anything to the page, text that is crammed in with very little white space, or anything else that unnecessarily causes a distraction for visitors.

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Designing to Meet User Expectations

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. No design will appeal to everyone. In recent weeks I’ve published two different galleries of web designs of unique website layouts and minimalistic websites and the sites featured in these galleries take different approaches to providing an attractive site for users. If you spend much time looking at which designs successfully present the image of a business to visitors, you will notice that websites in various industries frequently take a specific approach. Certain audiences will have expectations of what they want in a design, and if they don’t get it, the site will be out of place and most likely unsuccessful.

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