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Thread: First go at WordPress after dropping my beloved SquareSpace Site.

  1. #1
    MSP
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    First go at WordPress after dropping my beloved SquareSpace Site.

    Dear All,

    I have been rebuilding my Photography website in to WordPress with a view to improving user engagement and SEO ranking. If you have a minute, please take a look and let me know your opinion, be brutal, I can take it!

    Matt

    https://matthewsimsphotography.co.uk/

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  3. #2
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    I am no expert but I liked what you have done. My first thought was that I didn't like the fact it as totally black and white and that adding some color would be an improvement but after a few seconds on your site I think that was brilliant. It really makes it stand out and sets you above other sites. The other thing I really, really liked was the way you did the Facebook and Twitter links in the footer.

    Now the only minor thing I didn't like was the menu dropping into two lines. I am wondering if you can make a couple of those menu items sub menus to pull it all onto one line. I also like the presentation of pricing and packages.

    All in all I think you did an excellent job.
    bleau canon and MSP like this.

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    Okay first thing I noticed is you added fancybox plugin? Was that included in the free theme you are using? Shapely theme right?

    I think you would be better off with a premium theme. Shapely is okay but there are other themes that would be so much better.

    Examples are the Enfold theme:

    Which has many alternate themes inside it including photography.

    Another is the Divi theme.

    Divi as nice as it is, is the bit expensive from my opinion. Having to purchase a subscription to get a theme speaks overkill to me.

    There are others like these on the ThemeForest site. Spending $60 USD on themes like Enfold with developers who are always updating & fixing the theme ends up being worth it.

    Checkem out and let me know what you think.

    I use Enfold theme & the price paid totally worth it.

    https://ninjatechc.com

    Checkout the Enfold theme demos so you can see what the photography version looks like.

    Oh and the theme comes with other plugins. No need to add fancybox or any special sliders cause it comes with them, one being a 3d slider. Plus one feature saves time when designing having drag & drop ability. I still altered some CSS and some code of course but satisfied with the theme so far.

    Sent from my SM-N920P using Tapatalk
    Last edited by Ninja_Unmatched; Mar 31st, 2018 at 08:05 AM.

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    You also dont have to have the created by stuff on the bottom either. (Colorlib)

    Sent from my SM-N920P using Tapatalk

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    I think you should use Yoast plugin instead for SEO

    Sent from my SM-N920P using Tapatalk

  7. #6
    Senior Member bleau canon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSP View Post
    Dear All,

    I have been rebuilding my Photography website in to WordPress with a view to improving user engagement and SEO ranking. If you have a minute, please take a look and let me know your opinion, be brutal, I can take it!

    Matt

    https://matthewsimsphotography.co.uk/
    Nice clean looking site. A lot of photographers are going to this style site now and having success with it.

    Good luck
    Bleau
    "Give the gift of life, Adopt a child, And an Animal"

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    The last comment is correct but with this theme 1. It's a free theme. Unless you pay for support or its Pro version you will run into compatibility issues down the road as WordPress evolves.

    WordPress continues to evolve. If you like this simple look then better to choose a premium theme and use the simple look. While still having all the features, yeah your not using them, but eventually they become useful. WordPress is a constant target to hackers... any CMS for that matter.

    Next problem comes plugins and vulnerabilities. Something a theme can also introduce into your site.

    The real value is the level of support you get after the purchase anyways.

    Leaving for awhile & coming back to see some element on your site isn't working or displaying like you had it can be hair raising for some & fixing it can be just as hair raising unless you are a developer or have some of those skills. If not you are better served by a premium theme.




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    Last edited by Ninja_Unmatched; Mar 31st, 2018 at 07:33 PM.

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    Basically I've used shapely and have always run into issues at almost every turn / update.

    It has the same format that many sites use. You just chose not to go full width with your slider image. That's fine but most of my clients tend to show me sites they like & want theirs to look as good. A fewer number though wanted the 'grunge' simple look based on an overall theme they currently had going for their business.

    My question is this.... what did your site look like before? WordPress with the learning curve involved might as well 'Show Improve'. Kind of makes the effort more worth it.

    Don't mind me. I'm just making suggestions. I'm straight up honest & won't sugar coat it.

    Sent from my SM-N920P using Tapatalk

  10. #9
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    For someone who isn't real experienced in WordPress a free theme may be a good choice. Sometimes when you pay for a premium theme the packages that may come with it could make it much harder to learn. Free themes usually have the basic packages you need and what isn't included is easy to download. It is just far faster to learn to use a free theme.

    I just downloaded the Avada theme today. It is a cool theme but someone could spend a lot of time just figuring out which of the long list of things that come with it they will ever need.
    bleau canon likes this.

  11. #10
    Senior Member bleau canon's Avatar
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    There's nothing wrong with using free themes that come from reputable developers. We have 100's of free themes on our test servers, some being there for several years. Everyone of them have been getting regular updates from the developers from day 1. All of them have also been updated to the latest version of WP.

    We also have developers licenses with the some of the developers and transfer our clients to the pro version of the chosen theme for their websites once we get the site approved on the free versions.

    We pretty much use the same plugins on all of our client sites. The only pro version plugins we have right now are Meta Slider Pro, Uber Mega Menu and MaxMenu. All the others are free plugins being updated on a regular basis.

    As to date, we've never had a hack, and we have 100's of WP clients, Joomla and Drupal clients.

    A friend in the industry told me recently she had a client buy a theme from one of the popular paying theme farms. When they downloaded and installed the theme the theme hadn't been updated in over a year. It had 2 plugins that wasn't even to be found in WP and all the others needed updating.

    The support of the free themes we use is fast on the support forum. Once we move to the pro version then we can use pro support which isn't much faster than for the free versions. But, we very seldom need support.

    This are our personal experiences.

    Happy Easter Everyone
    turboguy likes this.
    Bleau
    "Give the gift of life, Adopt a child, And an Animal"


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