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The season of change is upon us. The recent arrival of WordPress 5.0 introduces a completely new Block Editor (a.k.a. Gutenberg). And, the release of our new Divi Builder Experience has not only offered smooth integration with Gutenberg, but it has also upgraded the entire experience of designing websites with Divi.

These new changes will undoubtedly bring about some concerns and confusion about how Divi and Gutenberg work together and how to best use Divi with all these changes. This tutorial is meant to soften the blow of change by walking you through the options available and the steps necessary to get the new Divi Builder experience up and running successfully on WordPress 5.0.

For those of you not ready for Gutenberg or the new Divi Builder Experience, don’t worry. I’ll discuss the options available for you to keep things working as usual. And for those of you ready to adventure into the exciting unknown, this guide will help you find the way.

Here is what I’ll be covering in this tutorial:

The Importance of Installing the Latest Version of Divi when Upgrading to WordPress 5.0

The latest version of Divi is compatible with WordPress 5.0. So, if you are upgrading to WordPress 5.0, make sure you also update Divi to 3.18+ as well. This new version addresses many of the compatibility issues with the new Gutenberg block editor. If you keep an older version of Divi, you will have trouble accessing the Divi Builder and other page settings until you upgrade.

The latest versions of Extra, Bloom, Monarch and the Divi Builder plugin are also compatible with WordPress 5.0 so it is best to update these as well when upgrading.

How the New Divi Builder Works with Gutenberg by Default

Once you update to WordPress 5.0 and install Divi 3.18 (latest version), you are ready to start building your website. If you add a new page, you will be greeted with a popup that allows you to use the Divi Builder or the default WordPress editor (now Gutenberg). Simply click “Use Divi Builder”.

You will notice that you will be launched straight into the Visual Builder on the front end.

If you exit the Visual Builder and edit the page on the backend, you will see there is no Classic Divi Builder available. You will only have the option of launching the Divi Builder on the front end.

This is because WordPress 5.0 removed the classic Editor and replaced it with the Block Editor (Gutenberg). Therefore, all connected applications, including the Classic Divi Builder, have been removed. In short, there is no Classic Divi Builder without the Classic WordPress Editor.

How to Activate the New Divi Builder on the backend with WordPress 5.0 (preferred method)

In order to access the new Divi Builder on the backend, all it takes is a few clicks. From your WordPress Dashboard, navigate to Divi > Theme Options. Once there, click the Builder tab. Under the Builder options, click the Advanced tab. There you will find the options to enable the latest Divi Builder experience and to enable the Classic (WordPress) Editor. You will need to enable both of these options to enjoy the new Divi Builder on the backend. Then click Save Changes.

Note: The option to enable the Classic Editor in Divi’s Theme Options replaces the need to use the Classic Editor plugin provided by WordPress Contributors to those not ready to use Gutenberg.

Once you have enabled the latest Divi Builder and the Classic Editor from Theme Options, you are ready to start building your pages with the New Divi Builder experience.

Editing a New Page with The New Divi Backend Builder UI

With the New Divi Builder enabled on the WordPress Classic Editor, you will see the familiar “Use the Divi Builder” button. Click this button like normal to deploy the Divi Builder.

Next select how you want to begin designing your page from the three options that pop up.

Now you are up and running with the new Divi Builder experience in full effect. You will notice the new Divi Backend Builder looks similar to the Classic Backend Divi Builder with some powerful new features at your fingertips.

Here are a few notable page editor UI features that will help you understand the new experience a bit better.

The “Build on the Front End” Button


The “Build On The Front End” button has replaced the traditional “Use the Visual Builder” button but the functionality is the same. It will deploy the Divi Builder on the front end for a complete visual building experience like before. The main reason for the wording of this button is because technically there is no more separate visual builder. There is only one Divi Builder that is now accessed on the backend and the front end.

The View Modes Now Available on the Backend


The New Divi Builder has brought the Visual Builder and all its features into the backend. Now you don’t have to go back and forth with editing your page. To activate the visual builder experience on the backend you can toggle the different view modes at the top of the Builder. By default, the wireframe view mode is active which makes sense because it closely matches the look and feel of the classic backend builder we are used to seeing. However, you can toggle through the different view modes (desktop, tablet, and smartphone) in order to edit your page visually (like you did with the Visual Builder) on the backend without having to leave the page.

The New Divi Builder UI


In addition to having the capability of toggling different view modes on the backend, the Divi Builder UI works seamlessly on the backend when editing your page. For example, when editing the settings of an element on the backend, the settings modal can be moved to any location within the the entire browser window, giving you the necessary spacing to make edits on the backend while seeing your changes in real time.

Switch Back to Classic Divi Builder

If you aren’t quite ready for the new Divi Builder experience, you can still use the Classic Divi Builder just like before. The latest version of Divi has incorporated an extremely simple way to deploy the Classic Divi Builder found right at the bottom of the Divi Builder UI on the backend when editing your page. There you will see a link that will allow you to switch back to the Classic Divi Builder in one simple click.

Note: You can also switch to the Classic Divi Builder under Theme Options. Click the Builder tab and then the advanced options tab. There you can find the option to enable or disable the latest Divi Builder Experience. Simply disable this option to keep the Classic Divi Builder as before. But remember, in order to see the Classic Divi Builder on the backend, you must make sure and enable the Classic Editor option as well.

The New Divi Builder Features


The new Divi Backend Builder also includes all the powerful new features that were previously available only on the Visual Builder. And if that wasn’t enough, you are also getting some brand new performance and usability upgrades with this new Divi Builder. These upgrades include:

  • A faster than ever building experience using cache leveraging
  • A 100% accurate depiction of your page on all view modes using React Portal
  • The ability to copy and paste between pages in the Visual Builder just like you can in the Classic Builder.

Check out the New Divi Builder Experience article for more about the powerful new features available.

Using The Classic Divi Builder with the New Divi

As mentioned above, you can switch to using the Classic Divi Builder by using the link provided in the new Divi Backend Builder page editor or by disabling the latest Divi Builder within theme options. Once you make the switch, the backend page editor will look almost exactly the same as before with a few minor changes. You will notice the old “Use the Visual Builder” button now reads “Build on the Front End” but the function is still the same as before. You will also have the option to switch to the new Divi Builder by clicking a link provided at the bottom of the Divi Builder in the backend.

Keep in mind that the Classic Divi Builder will still lack all of the new features now available on the backend in the New Divi Builder.

Final Thoughts

The launch of Gutenberg alone is a bit overwhelming for most. The WordPress page editor we are all familiar with is completely different! But, thankfully, the release of our new Divi Builder experience integrates smoothly with Gutenberg, allowing you to keep the familiar UI you have grown to love. And with all the powerful features now available on the backend, the Divi Builder is faster and more reliable than ever before.

I look forward to hearing your thoughts about the new Divi Builder Experience with Gutenberg in the comments below.

Cheers!

The post Gutenberg and the New Divi Builder Experience appeared first on Elegant Themes Blog.

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WordPress 5.0 was a major milestone in WordPress history.  Primarily for the introduction of Gutenberg, the new default editing experience. However, 5.0 also introduced Twenty Nineteen, the new default theme. One which is not only fully Gutenberg-compatible, but also boasts clean aesthetics and lots of room for customization. If you haven’t given the new 2019 default theme a look yet, here’s your chance.

The 2019 Default Theme, Twenty Nineteen

Twenty Nineteen should be installed automatically when you upgrade to WordPress 5.0. You will find it under the Themes tab in your admin dashboard. At first glance, it may not seem like there’s a lot going on with the 2019 default theme, but looks can be deceptive. Under the simple exterior lies an incredibly versatile theme that is ready for page-builder customization.

The Base Theme

When you first install the 2019 default theme, you may be surprised by its austerity.

However, if you look at the image above, all of the hallmarks of WordPress default themes are here:

  • Sample Hello World post
  • Sample comment with a Wapuu Gravatar
  • Search box widget
  • Recent Comments widget
  • Categories widget
  • Recent Posts widget
  • Archives Widget
  • Meta links widget

But there are no images, no icons, no site header image like in the previous default, Twenty Seventeen:

However, it is in this austerity that Twenty Nineteen’s draw lies. You get a blank canvas to build whatever you want, however you want. And 2019 wants you to use a page builder to do that. Gutenberg specifically, but any of the major products work just as well, if not better.

Gutenberg and Twenty Nineteen

It is impossible to talk about the 2019 default theme without discussing Gutenberg. That is in part because it’s based on a community project called the Gutenberg Starter Theme. With that in mind, you can definitely see what Twenty Nineteen has to offer when you open up the new editor.

If you do not want the new Gutenberg editor, but still want the customization offered by the 2019 default theme, you can always install the Classic Editor plugin, and your WordPress content creation/editing experience will not change at all. (You will notice that there are a number of plugins to disable Gutenberg, but this one is the official solution by the WordPress team.)

Even adding a Featured Image will greatly change the way the default theme appears. Because customization is the primary goal of Twenty Nineteen, there is no primary header or other images included because the impetus is on your creativity. When you add a featured image to a post, you will see the home page looks cleaner with just that one change.

And the post itself is far more pleasing with the large featured image on display. With the post’s featured image being so large and prominent, the theme developers recommend a minimum 2000 x 1200 px image.

Now, you may have noticed that the featured image from the editor and the one in the post itself are different colors. That’s because the theme overlays a filter on header images throughout the theme. We can easily fix that and see what other customization options are available in the Theme Customizer.

Twenty Nineteen Theme Customizer

You can get to the Theme Customizer by navigating to Appearance – Customize in your dashboard or by clicking the Customize button in your admin toolbar at the top of the page. Either way, you will get the customizer sidebar to the left of the page.

Most of the options here are pretty standard. However, a couple are definitely worth mentioning. Primarily, the color filter that gets applied to featured images.

Featured Image Color Filter

Under the Colors menu item, you have a single option: Primary Color. By default, the filter defaults to #005177. You can use the slider under Custom to whatever you want. If you don’t want any filter, simply uncheck the Apply a filter to featured images using the primary color box.

Even if you uncheck the Apply a Filter box, you will still need to choose a color — either the default or custom. This will be the primary color used in the theme for links and other elements that rely on the default palette. The 2019 default theme just uses this color to apply the featured image filter as well.

Site Logo

Additionally worth noting is the Logo from the Site Identity menu.

In Twenty Nineteen, you are asked to crop the image before the selection is complete. You will either upload a square image (of which you will select all of it), or you will crop your logo image to a square.

Once cropped, the 2019 default theme places your logo in the top left of the page. The same cropping applies to the Site Icon (or Favicon).

The New Social Menu

Under Menus, you will notice a location to add menu items called the Social Menu. This menu location is in addition to the traditional primary menu and footer menu. What makes it unique is that when you add a social network to the menu as a custom link, the menu itself automatically adds the social network’s logo as a clickable icon.

The text you enter will be used as administrative navigation text for menu management within the site. At launch, the theme supports 35 different social icons in the menu.

Additionally, any non-social links that are added to this menu (or social links not in the above list) will appear as the universal link icon.

Also, if you add the menu of social links to a different menu location than Social (as the Primary Menu in the example below), the Navigational Label will be used as anchor text. So make sure those are fit for public consumption, just in case.

Widgets

Finally, it should also be noted that Twenty Nineteen does not have a sidebar by default on Posts and Pages. That means the items listed under the Widgets menu are located in the Footer. Because the Footer is the only widgetized area in the 2019 default theme.

Keep in mind, however, the lack of a sidebar is because of the integrated Gutenberg compatibility. If you want a sidebar or widgets from one, you can simply design your Posts or Pages to have one as needed. In fact, there’s a Widgets section when you go to add a new Block to a Post or Page.

By having the ability to add widgets to a Post or Page on a discerning basis, Twenty Nineteen leans in on the promise of full customization and user choice. As more developers get used to Gutenberg and WordPress 5.0, Twenty Nineteen and other themes will benefit from an added number of Blocks being added to the repository for uses just like this.

Conclusion

The 2019 default theme for WordPress is everything a default theme should be. It is easy to use, simple to customize, and robust enough to scale to many different project types. Gutenberg changes the face of WordPress content creation, and Twenty Nineteen is a nice companion it. Enough features stay consistent with other default themes for Twenty Nineteen to feel comfortable to anyone who has used WordPress before, but enough features have changed that the theme feels shiny, new, and entirely ready to take on whatever projects we can throw at it.

What are your thoughts on the 2019 default theme?

Article featured image by Aurora72 / shutterstock.com

The post An Overview of 2019 the New Default WordPress Theme appeared first on Elegant Themes Blog.

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Hey Divi Nation! Thanks for joining us for the next installment of our weekly Divi Design Initiative; where each week, we give away two brand new, free Divi Layout Packs from our design team to you.

For the first layout this week, we have a fresh Painting Service Layout Pack for you. This pack is built with a special emphasis on showcasing painting services in a variety of unique ways, giving painting professionals everything they need to have their company website up and running in no time.

Check it out!

Check Out The Divi Painting Service
Layout Pack Below

Get it for free today!

Landing Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Home Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

About Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Services Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Service Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Service 2 Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Contact Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Key Features

The Painting Service Layout pack is built with a special emphasis on showcasing painting services in a variety of unique ways. The design is fresh with beautiful paint texture background images throughout and the layouts include three separate service pages that are extemely practical, giving painting professionals everything they need to have their company website up and running in no time.

Live Demos

Click the links below to see a live demo for each of the layouts included in the pack.

  1. Painting Service Landing Page (live demo)
  2. Painting Service Homepage (live demo)
  3. Painting Service About Page (live demo)
  4. Painting Service Services Page (live demo)
  5. Painting Service Service Page (live demo)
  6. Painting Service Service 2 Page (live demo)
  7. Painting Service Contact Page (live demo)
Access This Layout Right Now
Directly from Your Divi Builder

Get a FREE Painting Service Layout Pack for Divi - YouTube

Subscribe To Our Youtube Channel

Since Version 3.0.99 of Divi, you can find and import any of the layouts included in this pack (along with ALL of Divi’s Premade Layout packs) directly from the Divi Builder. They are already waiting for you.

When you add a new page from the WordPress Dashboard, deploy the Divi Builder. You will be prompted with three choices regarding how you want to start building your page. Select the option “Choose A Premade Layout”.

Under the Premade Layouts tab, you can easily find the new layout by scrolling through the list of layout packs. Once you find the Layout Pack, click on it. You will see all the individual page layouts included in the pack. Select the page layout you want to use and then click the “Use This Layout” button.

You can also access new layouts at anytime within the Divi Builder by clicking the “Load From Library” icon in the page settings bar (it looks like a plus symbol). Inside the Load From Library popup you can choose the new layout you want to use.

Authentication Required

Before you can download Premade Layouts from the Divi Library you must authenticate your Elegant Themes Subscription. If you have already activated updates for Divi under Divi > Theme Options > Updates, you have already authenticated your subscription and will have access to the layouts without a problem. If not, when you click to import a layout to your page, you will be prompted to enter your Elegant Themes Membership Username and API Key.

After you enter the Username and API Key, you will gain immediate access to the layouts. You can find your API Key under your members area on the Elegant Themes site.

No Licensing Restrictions

The photos included with these layouts have no licensing restrictions. This means you can use them in all of your commercial projects without having to worry about paying licensing fees or attributing the photographer. Use them in your commercial websites, sell them within your Divi child themes, include them in your own Divi layout packs or just use them on your blog. We know how challenging it can be to find good photos and how confusing and scary the licensing that governs those photos can be. We want to fix that problem for our users.

Download the Full Res Image Assets

New Layout Packs Every Week!

We hope you enjoy this layout pack. We look forward to hearing your opinions in the comment section below. Make sure you check out next week’s layout packs as well. We publish one on Monday and the other on Friday!

The post Get a FREE Painting Service Layout Pack for Divi appeared first on Elegant Themes Blog.

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Sometimes, we fall into the trap of being jealous of someone else’s success instead of celebrating it. This doesn’t make us bad people, but does mean we could put too much stock in comparing ourselves with others. Quite frankly, this is a surefire way to make yourself feel terrible.

Learning how to stop comparing yourself to others is a skill you need to cultivate if you want to live a fulfilling life, both in and out of the office. In this article, we’ll talk more about why comparing yourself to others can be such a bad thing for you. Then we’ll discuss three steps you can follow to eliminate this behavior from your life.

Let’s talk self-improvement!

What Makes Comparisons So Essential to Your Progress

In short, being able to make comparisons is one of the most efficient ways of gauging progress. For example, it’s usually a smart move to compare your salary with what other people in similar positions and locations are earning. Without those comparison points, you can’t ascertain if you’re getting paid what you’re worth.

Of course, the counter-argument here is that as long as you make enough money to live well, making comparisons is unwarranted. However, using data to make smarter decisions is, well, smart – and comparisons are a key part of the process.

To put it another way, comparing yourself to other people can be a valuable skill to determine what improvements you need to make to your own life. It can also provide you with an assessment of your own career’s progress. However, what you shouldn’t do is let those comparisons alone dictate your mindset and planning, which we’ll talk more about next.

Why You Shouldn’t Compare Yourself to Others

Although comparisons are a natural part of life, they’re also something that can affect you negatively. For example, imagine having a colleague (let’s call him John), who’s handsome, funny, fantastic at his job, well-liked, and even a badass guitar player.

Of course, John is amazing, but unfortunately, few people can live up to the standard. If you let yourself fall into the trap of comparing yourself with him, it’s not going to be fun for you. Depending on your mindset, these comparisons can make you feel insecure, affect your work, and even sour your relationship itself with John. Over time, these constant comparisons can breed resentment, which is obviously something you don’t want to happen.

The thing is, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to be as amazing a guy as John is. However, there’s a difference between striving to be a better person in general and wanting to become better than someone else. With the former, there’s no pressure, because as long as you’re working on improving yourself, you’ll always be on the right track. However, if you use someone else’s situation as your goalposts, you’ll constantly feel bad if you’re not up to their level.

In other words, striving to achieve more than you did yesterday is a better goal than looking to be better than someone else, mainly because the former is totally within your control. Let’s talk more about how to do so.

How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others (in 3 Steps)

If you’re worried that this next section will simply be a lecture don’t be. We’re also going to help you figure out how to stop comparing yourself to others, since just like John, we’re cool like that!

Step #1: Take Stock of Your Strengths and Weaknesses

As cool as John may be, we’re willing to bet there’s at least one area in life where you’re more skilled than he is. Maybe you’re a talented programmer or you have an amazing eye for design.

Conversely, there’s probably skills or parts of your life needing a bit of improvement. However, this is nothing to feel bad about, since we’re all works in progress.

At this stage, you should make an honest assessment of your strengths and weaknesses, and the medium (such as on your computer, or using pen and paper) is up to you. When finished, you should have a clear picture of what your skillset looks like. With this information, you’ll know what areas you need to improve, so you can stop comparing yourself to other people.

If you’re having problems with this step, here are some tips to help get the ball rolling:

  • Ask your friends or coworkers for their honest assessment of your strengths and weaknesses.
  • Remain open to constructive feedback – and don’t take it personally.
  • Take note of everything you’re told, then ask yourself if you think those assessments are accurate.

Receiving feedback from the people around you can be a humbling experience. However, it can also lay the groundwork for improving yourself, so it’s almost always a smart move.

Step #2: Make a Mental Note When You Compare Yourself to Others

At this stage, you should have an accurate idea of your personal pros and cons. This means you can get to work on improving yourself any way you see fit. However, you also need to avoid comparing yourself to others so you don’t become frustrated with the process.

For a lot of us, controlling and changing how we think can be one of the most difficult tasks to achieve. To give you an example, imagine you’re on a diet and you have a craving for a big, tasty chocolate cake. As you may be aware, ignoring this craving takes a lot of willpower. The approach in this instance is to acknowledge your craving, then think about how the indulgence would set you back in your goals.

The same can be applied to comparisons. One method that may help is to simply note whenever you find you’re making comparisons with someone else. Just the act of acknowledging it can be enough to help you break out of the habit, and you can even rope your friends in for support too.

We can apply the same approach to negative comparisons. When you feel upset because you’re not at someone else’s level, make a note of it, give yourself a quick telling off over your thoughts aren’t helpful, then get on with your day. After all, being productive rather than feeling sorry for yourself is always a better alternative.

Step #3: Focus on Improving Yourself Gradually

The key (and arguably best way) to avoiding comparisons of yourself with others is to try and improve constantly. Since you’ve already discovered your weaknesses, you have a set of areas to begin improving, and some goals to reach.

For example, if you’re a chronic procrastinator, you can try and exercise self-discipline each day to avoid wasting time. If planned and implemented correctly, this process should become a habit, essentially achieving the improvement you set out to accomplish.

The knock-on effect is that eventually, you’ll have no need to compare yourself to others as you’ll have hopefully recognized the effort you’ve put into improving yourself. However, it’s important to understand that this process takes time – sometimes years – regardless of the specific aspect of improvement.

Also, bear in mind that if you become frustrated, you’re more likely to revert to your old patterns. To combat this, take the time to simply appreciate each success you make. Each day you go without procrastinating, for example, is an opportunity to pat yourself on the back. You could also give yourself milestones, and reward yourself at each point.

Ultimately, when you accomplish something you set out to do, you deserve to feel good about it. Over time, these small successes should help boost your confidence, and stop you from comparing yourself with others.

Conclusion

It’s only natural you compare yourself with others. After all, some things are only evident through comparison. However, falling into a pattern where you constantly feel bad about where you are in life in comparison to others can be toxic. This goes both for yourself and for those relationships.

Learning how to stop comparing yourself to others is one of the best ways to lead a less stressful life, and here are three steps to help you get there:

  1. Take stock of your strengths and weaknesses.
  2. Make a mental note when you compare yourself to others.
  3. Focus on improving yourself gradually (and appreciate your successes).

Do you have any questions about how to stop comparing yourself to others? Ask away in the comments section below!

Article thumbnail image by ProStockStudio / shutterstock.com.

The post How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others appeared first on Elegant Themes Blog.

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As the new year approaches, it is always fun to look back on some of the tutorials that have helped our community. It is a proud (and humbling) moment for us, and we hope to continue to provide more tutorials to help empower you to do even more incredible things with Divi this coming year. Today, we are showcasing our 10 most popular Divi tutorials of 2018. Check em out!

The 10 Most Popular Divi Tutorials of 2018 1. 5 Text Styling Tricks for WordPress and Divi

“What takes a website from good to great is attention to detail, particularly when it comes to adding some interesting finishing touches to your text areas. In this tutorial, you will discover five different ways to style text with WordPress and Divi.”

Go to the Tutorial

2. 5 Creative Divi Blurb Module Designs

“In this post, explore 5 creative designs using one of Divi’s most popular features, the Blurb Module. It has many customizable features that can bring your website elements to life. Check it out!”

Go to the Tutorial

3. 5 Cool Things You Can Do In Divi with Anchor Links

“Anchor links (or jump links) can improve navigation and help organize your content, especially on a website with long-form content. This article shows you 5 cool things you can do in Divi with anchor links. For these examples, all you need is Divi and a desire to learn.”

Go to the Tutorial

4. 5 Unique Ways to Style Divi’s Contact Form Module

“Contact forms are a vital part of many websites. In this tutorial, discover 5 unique Divi contact form module designs that you can build using Divi’s built-in options only.”

Go to the Tutorial

5. 5 Creative Ways to Use Divi’s Built-In Margin and Gutter Controls

“The Divi margin and gutter controls are two powerful design settings that can really transform your layouts in creative ways. In this post, you’ll discover 5 ways to design your layouts using techniques you may not have considered.”

Go to the Tutorial

6. 25 “Hidden” Divi Features to Boost Productivity and Design

“With all of the powerful Divi features that have been released over the years, it is safe to say that some of them may have been overlooked (or ignored). This post highlights 25 Divi features that are meant to boost productivity and design but which may have escaped the notice of many users.”

Go to the Tutorial

7. How to Build a Membership Site with Divi

“Being able to build a membership site with Divi is an extremely valuable skill set. This tutorial gives a detailed walkthrough of how to build a membership site with Divi using MemberPress and one of our premade layout packs.”

Go to the Tutorial

8. How to Overlap Modules and Rows to Create Unique Layouts in Divi

“Overlapping is a useful technique that is often used to create unique web designs and layouts. And it is easy to overlap content with Divi. This tutorial shows you the basics of using custom margins and spacing to overlap modules with modules, modules with rows, and rows with rows. It even includes contact form layout you can use.”

Go to the Tutorial

9. How to Add Event Scheduling and Booking to Your Site Using the Pottery Studio Layout Pack

“If you ever wanted to add event scheduling to your website, this is the tutorial for you. The Modern Events Calendar plugin combined with Divi’s beautiful layouts are an effective combination both in design and functionality. Learn how to add new events and also create custom shortcodes to display event calendars on your website just about any way you can think of.”

Go to the Tutorial

10. How to Optimize Your Divi Layout for Mobile Devices

“Divi’s visual builder is a useful design tool for building websites for mobile. This post is meant to help you understand the options available within Divi so that you can make adjustments to mobile with confidence. And, having this knowledge will help you to think “mobile first” at the start of your projects, instead of patching up the mobile design after the fact.”

Go to the Tutorial

In Conclusion

It is always surprising to me just how much you can do with Divi if you take the time to learn. I hope these tutorials wet your appetite for even more Divi knowledge coming your way in the new year. We are excited to learn with you.

Cheers!

Featured Image via byArtists / Shutterstock.com

The post The 10 Most Popular Divi Tutorials of 2018 appeared first on Elegant Themes Blog.

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When creating a blog, it’s important to choose the right type of blog. The type of blog shows the blog’s purpose and how it goes about reaching its goals. This helps you determine the right strategy to reach those goals. To help you choose the best type of blog for your needs, in this article, we’ll look at 12 types of blogs and when they’re most successful. As we go through them, you’ll notice that there is some crossover on some of these blog-types, and a blog can be a combination of them. To be successful, it’s best to focus on one type.

1. Personal Blog

The personal blog doesn’t focus on a specific topic or audience. Bloggers write about what interests them: their hobbies, beliefs, daily life, politics, sports, etc., and they attract the types of people that share the same interests. The writer just wants to make a difference and share knowledge or experience.

They’re the most successful when they find a like-minded audience and build a community around their common interests.

2. Personal Brand Blog

This blog focuses on the blogger as the brand. They’re used to build credibility for the blogger as a thought-leader, speaker, and teacher within a specific niche. It’s often used for coaching, consulting, guidance, personal development, spirituality, etc. They often provide free downloadable content such as e-books, checklists, guides, etc.

The focus is on building a relationship with the audience for lead-generation. This type of blog is successful when it empowers readers through to the call to action. Those with ads and affiliate sales will need to attract a large audience in niches that include lots of ad network and affiliate products. Those that sell their own products will either need a large audience or expensive products to sell. Those with the goal of being hired only needs a smaller audience, but they’ll need to build strong relationships with their audience.

3. Corporate Blog

The focus of this blog is the business itself- their own products or services with the purpose of increasing traffic for their business in order to gain customers. The topics are chosen in order to attract visitors that are interested in their specific industry. They’re run by corporations and could be called enterprise blogs.

Their goals focus on capturing leads for their sales funnel. This includes landing pages, calls to action, email lists, specialized contact forms, offers, etc. The idea is that visitors will be attracted by the content and then move through the sales funnel into the call to action.

4. Personal Services Blog

This blog discusses topics around the services that are offered. These are great for local services such as lawn care, babysitting, house sitting, dog walking, junk removal, etc. The blog can make some money through ads or affiliate links, but the primary goal of this blog is for the blogger to get hired to perform the services.

They’re successful when they reach the local audience since this is the audience that can follow through their call to action.

5. Repair Services Blog

This blog discusses topics around the services that are offered. These are great for local repair or maintenance service businesses such as lawn care, home repair, etc. Like personal services, the primary goal of this blog is for the blogger to get hired to perform the services.

They’re also successful when they reach the local audience that can follow through their call to action.

6. Niche Blog

A niche blog focuses on a specific topic. Some are extremely specific (such as fly-fishing in TN) while others “niche-up” one notch (such as fly-fishing in the USA) to appeal to a slightly wider audience. A lot of times these are hobby blogs and end up turning into small personal business blogs (and sometimes large-scale businesses).

Niches include anything someone is interested in and they’re usually more successful if the blogger is passionate about the topic. This passion keeps them going even with low traffic.

Popular topics include:

  • Finance
  • Sports
  • Business
  • WordPress
  • Food
  • Writing
  • Cars
  • Music
  • Games
  • Movies
  • Books
  • Fitness
  • Mom
  • Travel
  • Current Events
  • Entertainment
  • Fashion
  • Lifestyle
  • DIY
  • Politics
  • Parenting
  • Pets

They can also be created for the purpose of business. In this case, the blogger would need to analyze the audience, monetization opportunities, and competition before starting the blog and make adjustments to the idea for the best marketing strategies. They’re the most successful when they find a niche that isn’t too saturated.

7. Affiliate Blog

The content for this type of blog focuses on products. It’s usually in the form of product reviews or tutorials of using the products. The call to action is to purchase the product through the blog’s affiliate link.

Ranking for keywords around the products is crucial. In order to be successful, affiliate blogs need to find products with excellent affiliate programs and that are in demand. Email lists are a must as they provide a group to promote to.

8. Artist’s Blog

An artistic blog focuses on any type of art that the artist creates, such as paintings, drawings, sculpture, music, photography, writing, etc. They often include galleries, shops where you can purchase or commission work, articles that show the work, provide tutorials, podcasts, etc.

They’re successful when they build a following for their art. It might not require a large audience; just enough to support the artist.

9. The Counter-Culture Blog

This blog uses a marketing method that is divisive in its approach to content. Using the concept that all attention is good attention, it attempts to stand out from the crowd by being as polarizing as possible to the popular view. It’s difficult to get right. If not done well it can eventually be polarizing to those it attracts. Titles can seem more like clickbait. The key is not to be rude, but make bold statements against popular views.

It works best for services and affiliate blogs. It’s the most successful when it gets the balance right- attracting the right audience and keeping them. The counter-culture thought has to be more than the headline- carrying throughout the content itself. It will have a smaller audience, so it needs to turn that smaller audience into faithful followers. The blogger will need to be exceptionally knowledgeable in the topic.

10. Guest Blogs

The content for these blogs written by guest writers who are typically experts in the field. This is different from hiring writers. This is bringing in guest bloggers that already have a following of their own in order to grow the audience.

This leaves the blog owner free to manage and promote the blog while providing content that might even be beyond the blog owner’s expertise. The blog owner will sometimes write some of the content as well, but they’re not the primary authors.

This is successful when you get bloggers that can bring their audience to your blog. They will also help promote the content so the articles can have a larger reach than those written by the blog owner. The blog will need a good following in order to bring in guest bloggers that have a large audience. If you get good enough guest bloggers, you’ll have a variety of content and voices which can draw a larger audience.

11. Case Study Blogs

The case study blog (also, experimental or test blog) tries things out to see what works. They try different tools, techniques, strategies, etc., and report the results to the audience in order to provide insights into their fields. This essentially creates step-by-step guides that the audience can follow for success.

It’s successful when it has enough followers to make a strong case study that can lead into a call to action. Bloggers need to share what works, what doesn’t work, and why. This means the tests have to be relevant to the audience they’re trying to attract.

12. Podcast

The content for this blog includes the embedded podcast (usually audio or video or both, from whatever platform it’s supplied from) and includes a description, summary, or a transcript of the podcast, and links for the call to action. The posts are episodic. The podcast usually takes the form of a chat, webinars, interviews, training, etc.

It’s successful by having a large following that clicks through the call to action. It can be a course, book, software, service, downloads, etc.

Ending Thoughts

That’s our look at 12 types of blogs and when they’re most successful. Even though there will be some overlap, a blog should primarily focus on one type of post. This helps readers know what to expect and helps the blogger focus on their specialized content and meet the blog’s goals.

Even though some of these blog types are extremely different, they all have one thing in common: in order for any blog to survive it needs high-quality content that’s published often. High-value content keeps readers coming back and gives them a reason to share.

We want to hear from you. What is your favorite type of blog? Let us know in the comments.

Featured Image via Inspiring / shutterstock.com

The post 12 Types of Blogs and When They’re Most Successful appeared first on Elegant Themes Blog.

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This past year we took our Divi Design Initiative to a whole new level by giving away two free world class Divi layout packs every single week. Each pack includes all the pages needed to get a site up and running quickly. Plus all the custom images, graphics, and icons included are free for you to use without restriction. Looking back on the year, some of these freebies stood out from the rest. So, we thought we’d share the 10 most popular Divi freebies of 2018.

The 10 Most Popular Divi Freebies of 2018 1. Web Agency Layout Pack

“This layout pack includes some important “must haves” for a Web Agency, including a pricing page, a services page, and a portfolio page. The design is tastefully colorful and clean throughout. The background images stage the content in creative and effective ways. I particularly love the CTA on the Services page. The Pricing page has exceptional color schemes with some valuable sections for establishing credibility (the trusted brands section is a nice touch). Plus, with the thoughtful inclusion of text (not just dummy text), I would expect any agency would be able to use these layouts out of the box, with only minor adjustments.”

Read More

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2. SaaS Company Layout Pack

“This SaaS layout pack is designed to get your SaaS website up and running in no time. With seven stunning and elaborated layouts, your website will contain all the pages it needs with the necessary information which you can adjust to your own needs. A professional approach is the primary focus of this layout pack and matches perfectly with the stunning illustrations and advanced built-in Divi options that were used to bring you a completed and easy-to-install layout pack. On top of that, the layout pack includes, among other layouts, a documentation page that’ll allow you to share your documentation in an elegant and targeted way.”

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3. Interior Design Layout Pack

“This interior design layout pack represents the core values of each interior design company out there; style and expertise. With eight elaborated layouts that contain stunning and unique images, this layout pack is ready to bring your interior design website to the next level. Each one of the layouts is a combination of some of Divi’s most desirable built-in options and look great on desktop, as well as on tablet and mobile.”

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4. Business Consultant Layout Pack

“This Business Consultant layout pack is just what a consultant needs to market their services online. The landing page is beautiful. The services page has unique design features that stand out. And the Case Study page layout has been thoughtfully designed to give the user just what they need. I love the overlapping technique used throughout the layouts because it makes those CTA’s really pop.”

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5. SEO Layout Pack

“This SEO layout pack follows, design-wise, many trends that evolved in 2017 and keep existing and growing in 2018. One of the biggest assets this layout pack has are the section backgrounds that bring vibrant colors to whatever type of website you might be creating with this layout pack. There are 8 different layouts included in this layout pack that provide you with all the elements an SEO website needs to communicate with its visitors in an elegant and easy way.”

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6. Software Marketing Layout Pack

“The software marketing layout pack can be used for any type of website related to tech. The appealing illustrations that are included elevate the professionality level of your website and improve your company’s branding. With its 9 different layouts, this software marketing layout pack allows you to build a software marketing website from scratch and finish it with just a few steps.”

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7. Digital Payments Layout Pack

“This Digital Payments layout pack is designed to provide all the necessary pages to get an online digital payment company up and running in no time. Some of the key pages include a Signup page which will work well as a registration page. And the features page gives an exceptional framework for showcasing all featurres associated with the product. It would be easy to use the different elements on these pages (like those feature boxes) to add more content. Also, the map on the contact page is unique and fits the design theme perfectly. I know you are going to enjoy this layout pack.”

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8. Pottery Studio Layout Pack

“This Pottery Studio layout pack is perfect for any Pottery business looking to expand their services. The Classes and Class page layouts will provide what you need to start marketing and selling Pottery classes online. The design is both familiar and unique. The testimonials standout nicely and the high quality photos used are as beautiful as they are professional.”

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9. Real Estate Layout Pack

“The Real Estate Layout pack would be an awesome fit for real estate companies and agents. The color scheme works with the light background to make images standout. The header on the homepage has a unique desgin with dual CTAs which should help boost conversions. The Team page is also a nice addition since listing real estate agents is a must for any agency.”

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10. Food Recipes Layout Pack

“This Food Recipes Layout Pack allows you to focus on what’s really important which is the tasty recipes you’ve worked on so passionately. The different layouts that come with this layout pack fulfill every communication need you have. The recipe page sets your creativity free by providing you with all the elements you need to present your recipes elegantly and effectively. You can reuse the recipe layout for every new recipe that comes out. The only thing you’ll need to do is change the steps, media and copy according to your new recipe. And with the Visual Builder close within reach, this will take you almost no time.”

Read More

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In Conclusion

These community favorites definitely highlight some fantastic freebies that make us all here at Elegant Themes very proud. We love to help empower you to do all those wonderful things you do with Divi. So, if you haven’t taken advantage of these world class layout packs, they are right there waiting for you in Divi. Start your year off right with some Divi awesomeness today.

Featured Image via Alex Gorka / Shutterstock.com

The post The 10 Most Popular Divi Freebies of 2018 appeared first on Elegant Themes Blog.

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Sometimes, you’ll start a project you’re passionate about, only to drop it halfway through. It’s always sad, but it happens to a lot of people, and it’s often due to compelling reasons. However, in other cases, the roadblocks are solely in our own heads, which can keep us from accomplishing our goals.

For this reason, learning how to finish what you start is essential to cultivate success. Even if your projects fail, you’ll learn something by seeing them through. In this article, we’ll talk about why committing to something can be difficult, then we’ll go over some tips to help you finish what your start.

Let’s do this!

Why It’s Difficult to See Projects Through

Whether it’s in or out of the workplace, seeing a project through to the end can be difficult. Many of us are “working” on grandiose projects that we never seem to make any headway on. For example, if we had a dollar for every time we heard someone was working on a new novel, only to never actually finish it, we’d be rich.

The thing is, you can also fall into a pattern of not being able to complete even modest projects. That can happen due to a variety of reasons, such as:

  • Procrastination. We’re all guilty of putting work off until the last minute from time to time. If this becomes a habit, it will stop you from getting anything done at all.
  • Bad work habits. Most successful people get a lot done because they try to be as productive as possible, which requires developing good work habits.
  • Fear of failure. In some cases, just the idea of failing can be enough to stop us from making any progress, and this is more common than you might think.
  • Lack of motivation. Sometimes you won’t feel like being productive, which is why it’s rarely a good idea to rely on motivation alone.

Imagine, for example, you’re a famous author working on your next fantasy novel. Fans have been waiting for years now and you keep putting off finishing the book because you can’t find the motivation to write, or you’re scared it might not turn out the way you want.

Wanting to do your best work only is a great thing. However, at some point, if you don’t finish what you start, you end up in ‘development hell’. That’s when progress on your project slows down to a crawl and you end up losing all your momentum. Ultimately, you need to learn how to finish what you start, which is what we’ll talk about in the next section.

How to Finish What You Start (4 Tips)

In many cases, getting things done comes down to self-discipline. However, sometimes it’s hard to force yourself to see something through, which is why it can be a good idea to put some of these tips into action. If you do, you’ll have a much easier time getting projects to the finish line!

1. Stop Being a Perfectionist

In development, there’s something called a Minimum Viable Product (MVP). As the name implies, this is a bare-bones version of a product that’s not finished yet, but it gets the job done. A good example of this is when software is released in ‘early access’, enabling the developers to polish it up until the full release. Although it’s not always possible to ‘ship an MVP’ in all types of work, the MVP mentality is something that can benefit a lot of people.

The idea is, at some point, you need to stop trying to get everything perfect to avoid getting stuck in development hell. In the workplace, this can lead to people not trusting you to get things done, which is not a good look for anyone.

To be fair, perfectionism can be a fantastic trait. The higher your standards are, the more likely it is you’ll deliver results that go above and beyond. However, perfectionism is only possible in as much as it doesn’t interfere with getting things done.

If you want to apply MVP mentality to your projects, here’s how you can get started:

  1. Outline the bare minimum you need to do to complete each project.
  2. Set additional milestones for yourself after your MVP is done, focusing on improving it.
  3. Try to put off any ‘editing’ work until your MVP is ready.

Some of us don’t work in fields where we can ship MVPs since clients expect deliverables to be great from the get-go. If that applies to you, then it’s at least worth trying to stick to point number three. Don’t get stuck re-working every section of your project when you should be moving forward.

2. Break Down Your Goals Into Smaller Tasks

There’s a reason why so few people ever sit down and finish writing their novels. Writing a book is an enormous task that can intimidate anyone (unless your surname is King). While you may be motivated at the start, as the work drags on you might slow down your progress or even put the whole thing off indefinitely.

When it comes to projects of that magnitude, the smart thing to do is to break them down into smaller tasks that are easier to complete. Imagine, for example, you want to launch an online store using WordPress. Here’s how we would break that down into steps:

  1. Buy a domain and sign up for a hosting plan.
  2. Install WordPress.
  3. Set up WooCommerce.
  4. Find and install a WooCommerce-friendly theme that fits your style.
  5. Create your first product.

Of course, there’s a lot more work to launching an online store. However, it becomes much less intimidating once you break it down into individual tasks.

You can apply this approach to pretty much anything, even if it’s a smaller project. All you have to do is list each step you need to complete and keep track of them as you finish each one, which brings us to the next section.

3. Keep Track of Your Progress

One of the reasons why so many people have a hard time finishing what they start is not seeing the fruits of their labor. In short, they don’t feel like they’re making progress. Take losing weight, for example. Imagine you want to drop 50 pounds, which requires quite a lot of work. With a good diet and exercise, you can (safely) lose anywhere within one to three pounds in a week.

This means in a best-case scenario, you could lose those 50 pounds in about 17 weeks. However, even that’s going to be difficult unless you have access to a dietician and a personal trainer. For the rest of us ordinary folk, the process will probably take a few more months. The problem is, you might start to feel discouraged after a while if you don’t see a noticeable difference because the changes are so incremental.

The same can happen in any kind of project. If you don’t feel you’re making progress after putting in a lot of work, it’s easy to lose motivation and quit. That’s why it’s essential you find a way to track your progress closely.

One of our favorite ways to do this is to set SMART goals. These are all about giving yourself specific targets to hit and setting a timeframe in which to do it. Once you have a goal in mind and you’ve broken it off into smaller tasks (as we discussed in the previous section), tracking your progress becomes simple. To make this even more manageable, we recommend using a productivity app that enables you to keep track of your progress.

4. Have Other People Hold You Accountable

If you have a hard time finishing what you start, what you might need is someone to hold you accountable if you stop. This is also called an ‘accountability partner’.

These types of relationships are more common than you think. For example, plenty of self-help groups assign you buddies or mentors whose primary task is to keep you on course. In some cases, that might mean making sure you hit a deadline, that you don’t break your diet, or that you don’t fall back into a self-destructive behavior pattern.

In a regular workplace, your superiors are basically accountability partners since it’s their job to make sure you get things done. However, if you – like some of us – work in a more independent setting, finding an accountability partner can be more complicated. Here are some ideas to help you started:

  • Go to meetups that have to do with your field so you can build your own network.
  • Try visiting and participating in online forums dedicated to your area of work.
  • Use business networking apps to meet other like-minded individuals.

With these kinds of relationships, the idea is you’ll also help your partner stay on track and finish what they start. That way, you’ll both benefit from it, which motivates you to remain accountable.

Conclusion

If you’re the kind of person that can see a project through, you already have an advantage over a lot of people, both in and out of the workplace. For most of us, making a commitment to complete something on time can be stressful. However, it’s a skill you need to master if you want to be successful.

You’ll need self-discipline to finish what you start. However, there are also several tips you can put into action to get you to the finish line, such as:

  1. Stop being a perfectionist.
  2. Break down your goals into smaller tasks.
  3. Keep track of your progress.
  4. Have other people hold you accountable.

Do you have any problems finishing what you start? Share your thoughts about why that is in the comments section below!

Article thumbnail image by blocberry / shutterstock.com

The post How to Finish What You Start appeared first on Elegant Themes Blog.

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Hey Divi Nation! Thanks for joining us for the next installment of our weekly Divi Design Initiative where each week, we give away two brand new, free Divi Layout Packs from our design team to you.

For the second layout this week, Kenny and his team have created an eye-catching Internet Service Provider Layout Pack that’ll help you get a stunning website up and running in no time.

Check Out The Divi Internet Service
Provider Layout Pack Below

Get it for free today!

Landing Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Home Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

About Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Blog Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Contact Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Service Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Service 2 Page Design

View The Live Layout Demo

Key Features

The Internet Service Provider Layout Pack will immediately give you the tech vibe you’d expect from it. Every layout focuses on making calls to action stand out while offering an eye-catching design as well. In short, the Internet Service Provider Layout Pack will help you get a stunning and modern website up and running in no time!

Live Demos

Click the links below to see a live demo for each of the layouts included in the pack.

  1. ISP Landing Page (live demo)
  2. ISP Homepage (live demo)
  3. ISP About Page (live demo)
  4. ISP Blog Page (live demo)
  5. ISP Contact Page (live demo)
  6. ISP Service Page (live demo)
  7. ISP Service 2 Page (live demo)

Access This Layout Right Now
Directly from Your Divi Builder

Get a FREE Internet Service Provider Layout Pack for Divi - YouTube

Subscribe To Our Youtube Channel

Since Version 3.0.99 of Divi, you can find and import any of the layouts included in this pack (along with ALL of Divi’s Premade Layout packs) directly from the Divi Builder. They are already waiting for you.
When you add a new page from the WordPress Dashboard, deploy the Visual Builder. You will be prompted with three choices regarding how you want to start building your page. Select the option “Choose A Premade Layout”.

Under the Premade Layouts tab, you can easily find the new layout by scrolling through the list of layout packs. Once you find the Layout Pack, click on it. You will see all the individual page layouts included in the pack. Select the page layout you want to use and then click the “Use This Layout” button.

You can also access new layouts at anytime within the Visual Builder by clicking the “Load From Library” icon in the page settings bar (it looks like a plus symbol). Inside the Load From Library popup you can choose the new layout you want to use.

Authentication Required

Before you can download Premade Layouts from the Divi Library you must authenticate your Elegant Themes Subscription. If you have already activated updates for Divi under Divi > Theme Options > Updates, you have already authenticated your subscription and will have access to the layouts without a problem. If not, when you click to import a layout to your page, you will be prompted to enter your Elegant Themes Membership Username and API Key.

After you enter the Username and API Key, you will gain immediate access to the layouts. You can find your API Key under your members area on the Elegant Themes site.

No Licensing Restrictions

The photos included with these layouts have no licensing restrictions. This means you can use them in all of your commercial projects without having to worry about paying licensing fees or attributing the photographer. Use them in your commercial websites, sell them within your Divi child themes, include them in your own Divi layout packs or just use them on your blog. We know how challenging it can be to find good photos and how confusing and scary the licensing that governs those photos can be. We want to fix that problem for our users.

Download the Full Res Image Assets

New Layout Packs Every Week!

We hope you enjoy this layout pack. We look forward to hearing your opinions in the comment section below. Make sure you check out next week’s layout packs as well. We publish one on Monday and the other on Friday!

The post Get a FREE Internet Service Provider Layout Pack for Divi appeared first on Elegant Themes Blog.

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An intranet is a “closed-circuit internet”. It is available only at a certain location or via certain protocols. Some companies may have a network for their business that is only available while in their building. Or perhaps a college has a campus-wide network for faculty, but outside of that campus, it is inaccessible.

The difference in an intranet and the internet is that you are hosting the intranet yourself. Instead of being a distributed web of servers talking to each other via remote protocols, your network is localized and hosted on local servers in your own physical space. It’s basically a tiny internet that lives in your IT department’s office.

An extranet is not all that different. Instead of being housed on a local server, accessible only to those connected to the same network, an extranet is housed in the cloud and accessible only to folks within a certain IP range (or another factor you set). Mostly, an extranet serves folks on distributed teams because they can’t access a physical location.

Companies use intranets and extranets to facilitate private and secure mass data sharing and collaboration. Such as company wide access to internal documentation, announcements, time off calendars, and more. In this article we’ll cover why WordPress is a good fit for your intranet or extranet and then show you how to create one.

Let’s get to it!

Why Use WordPress for an Intranet or Extranet?

Well, the first reason is that it’s free. Obviously, you will have to spring for the server and bandwidth to host the thing, but if you’re looking at setting up an intranet in the first place, you likely have that covered already.

You will probably be using your intranet for some of this stuff:

  • storing private documents
  • posting various announcements and memos
  • hosting training manuals,
  • providing updates to policies
  • securely locking away any files that really shouldn’t be posted anywhere the public has even blocked access
  • keeping an updated company directory
  • maintaining a company calendar
  • allowing access to internal collaboration tools
  • setting up various project management environments
  • running an internal, private social network
  • and doing mostly anything you could do on the public web

Lucky for you, WordPress has all of that functionality built into the core. And with just a little bit of work, you can use it to do the exact same thing that expensive intranet platforms charge a lot for.

Most other platforms charge per user. That makes having an intranet potentially out of reach for a number of small businesses and non-profits. With WP, you don’t have to worry about that. Outside of normal IT costs, you’re going to be able to really spare your tech budget a big hit this way.

Setting up a WordPress Intranet

The first thing you need is a network. That may sound obvious, but you won’t get anywhere if your on-site machines don’t talk to each other. And the hub of any network is the server. After all, the internet is just a series of servers that talk to each other and to our browsers, so an intranet is the same. Only those servers are on-site.

Step 1: Pick a Local Server Platform

First thing’s first: you’re going to need a pretty good computer. If you think you can run an intranet on a last-generation, beat-up machine, think again. This is going to be a workhorse computer that’s left on pretty much all the time (or at least while people need the intranet during work hours). So you’re going to want something moderately beefy.

Once you have that picked out, it’s time to make it the center of attention. To do that, we just need to install WordPress. Simple, right? Actually, yeah.

You will want to use MAMP / LAMP / WAMP. MAMP, LAMP, and WAMP let you turn your Mac, Linux, or Windows (hence the M, L, and W in the names). There’s also a version called XAMPP that works on all three; however, it is a bit more advanced than the others and not quite as stable.

Note that if you do go with XAMPP yourself, do not download any version marked with a VM. You will want the versions listed above those. You’re not setting up a virtual machine. Instead, you’re putting together the real thing.

For this particular example, however, I will be using MAMP. The process on each platform is similar, and you can find it documented more fully here.

Additionally, you might be considering a local environment such as Local by Flywheel, and while it can work, we don’t suggest it. Any member of the AMP stack is designed for workhorse-level strain, and Local is not. You may have no trouble with it as a core platform for your intranet, but that’s not what it’s designed to do, unlike the AMP stack. So we suggest going with one of those.

Download and run the software, and you will have a couple of new additions to your Applications folder. We aren’t concerned with MAMP Pro right now, so go into the MAMP folder and launch the program.

MAMP is really simple to use. Just press the Start Servers button to start the servers.

Congrats, you have an up-and-running local development server. But…you don’t have WordPress installed, and you haven’t given access to the people on your network. But you will!

Step 3: Installing WordPress on Your Local Intranet

The first thing you need to do at this point is download WordPress. You will be doing a manual install this time, rather than using a quick installer. Honestly, there’s not a lot of difference.

You will get a file that’s likely called WordPress-4.9.8.zip (or whatever the current version is). Unzip it. Now, you have a folder simply titled “wordpress” on your computer. If you open it, you will see a file and directory structure identical to that of hosted online installations.

Now you want to find the MAMP folder in Applications and navigate until you find one named htdocs. That’s where your new installation of WordPress is going to live. Just drag the unzipped folder into htdocs. In fact, that’s where all of your local web files will be stored.

At this point, you will create the database that WP runs on. So head to the MAMP window and press the Open Start Webpage button.

Your browser will open to the default MAMP help page, and you will see a toolbar of menu items. Navigate to Tools and find the link that says phpMyAdmin in the dropdown.

When the new page loads, you see the real heart of your WordPress installation. The vast majority of your data will live here. Click on the Databases tab, and name your new DB under the Create Database heading. We chose et_intranet. Hit Create when ready.

The next page is scary. Ignore it. You haven’t created database tables yet because you haven’t set up WordPress yet. It’s okay.

Now, you are ready to go and get WP up and running. Start MAMP up if you haven’t already by pressing the Start Servers button.

Then navigate to either http://localhost:8888/wordpress or http://127.0.0.1:8888/wordpress to access your new installation. Keep in mind, also, that you can rename the folder called wordpress whatever you want. You then use whatever the folder is named in the URL. So if you rename the wordpress folder to intranet, it would be https:localhost:8888/intranet.

Whatever you name it, you will choose a language for the installation, and then you will see this screen.

If you have used quick installers before, this was generally handled for you. However, since this is a manual installation, it’s up to you to name the database and get it up and running. It’s very easy to do, and you’re not going to mess anything up. When you’re ready to start, press the Let’s Go button to be taken here.

Change Database Name to whatever you used in phpMyAdmin earlier when you created the DB. Use root for both username and password.

Keep in mind, also, that under Table Prefix, you absolutely 100% must include the underscore afterward. So if you change it from wp_, you will need to make sure it’s intranet_ or whatever you choose. When you press the Submit button, you will give a few confirmations and set up your WP username before being taken to your shiny, new WP admin panel.

One that’s running on your local machine.

Now, it’s time to get it set up for your team. And your team only.

Step 5: Providing Network Access to Your Intranet

Since the term localhost is actually what it says, the local host, only your machine can use that term. But the computer running MAMP has an IP address that anyone on the same network can access. You can find it in two different ways.

The first is going into your network settings and checking under the Connected heading.

The second way is via the command line. You can use the Terminal utility to do this. Simply enter ifconfig |grep inet and hit enter. Yes, that’s the special character for the vertical bar. Thank you OSX Daily for teaching us that command. You will find your computers IP address where it says inet.

Now, you want to make sure you have the right ports open for your team, so go into the MAMP preferences and see what they’re set at. By default, it’s 8888, and that’s okay to use as long as there aren’t other applications on this local server running on those ports. If that’s the case, press the button to use ports 80 and 3306.

With those two numbers in hand, anyone connected to the same network can connect to your new WordPress installation as long as the MAMP server is running simply by going to the IP:Port/wordpress, or 10.0.0.152:8888/wordpress for example. The IP and Port will always be separated by a colon.

And if you would prefer to use a domain instead of an IP address (because they’re a bit easier to remember than strings of numbers), you can do that, too. Siteground has a great walkthrough of using the hosts file to set it all up.

Need (or Want) a WordPress Extranet Instead?

A WordPress extranet works just like the installation above except it’s available only to a select number of people on a select number of machines. Because of the way that the .htaccess file works, you can still whitelist entire networks, while blocking all other traffic. So even if you have a distributed team, you can still physically limit logins.

Simply open up your site’s .htaccess file.

Then insert the following code and save/upload the file again. Make sure to add your own IP address to the file. 

order deny, allow
deny from all
allow from 111.222.33.44

Just add any other IP addresses or IP ranges on additional lines, and you’ve restricted access to your extranet just like it were a WordPress intranet.

WordPress Intranet Plugins

Setting up the infrastructure of your WordPress intranet is only the beginning. Now that you have that up and running, you need to flesh out and customize the environment you’re providing for your company, campus, or team. WordPress has a lot of plugins that make it really easy for you to customize and get the exact intranet functionality you need.

All-In-One Intranet

Your intranet needs to stay your intranet. So this plugin makes sure that it does. It’s free, and it just works. You go into the settings, tell it how private you want the site to be, and within a few clicks, your intranet is locked down tight. Plus, there’s a premium version that works on WP Multisite installations and has even more options.

Price: Free | More Information

BuddyPress

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