The WooThemes Blog

The latest news from WooThemes Headquarters

Sign up for a free account Gain access to our free themes & plugins

Tools for WordPress Contributors

December 19, 2014 in Blog, WordPress tips & tricks. 2 Comments

Contributing to WordPress is an exciting and rewarding task – no matter how you go about it, it’s incredibly satisfying knowing that you’re giving back to a platform and community that dominates nearly 25% of the internet. That being said, it can be very tricky to know where to start with contributions. There are so many different avenues that you can go down when contributing that it would be incredibly helpful if you had a guide to show you the way.

Well, you’re in luck – here are a few tools that are designed to help new (and old) contributors find their way in the world of WordPress.

Slack

The absolute best way to find guidance in the world of contributions is by talking directly to other contributors and the absolute best place for this is the WordPress Slack. Slack is a communication platform that the WordPress project uses to enable constant communication between contributors. You can sign up for the WordPress Slack here (free) and dive right into conversations with other like-minded contributors.

WordPress Slack

The bonus of Slack is that all conversations are split up into their relevant channels, which are easily accessible once you have signed in. Want to know more about what channels are available and what would be best for you? Then read on…

Make WordPress

If Slack is the central hub for real-time communication between contributors, then the Make WordPress site is the central hub for all information, updates and news regarding contributions. On this site you will find all the different areas for contributing and each area has it’s own blog so you can keep up to date with news and information regarding contributing in your chosen space. Here you will also find out what Slack channels are setup for each area, so you can easily jump into real conversations with real people.

DevHub

While Slack and Make WordPress are resources for communication, there are also plenty of static resources available that will assist you with contributions on different levels. Once such resource is the WordPress DevHub – this is a source of handbooks for plugin development, theme development and complete code reference (that will be replacing the existing Codex once it is complete).

If you would like to get involved in improving the DevHub resources then jump into the #meta-devhub channel on Slack and someone will help you out there.

Core Contributor Handbook

Just like themes and plugins have their own handbooks for developers that are available on the DevHub, there is also a handbook for core contributors. This handbook outlines and details everything you need to know about contributing to core, but bear in mind that it is not entirely complete as it is always seen as a work in progress.

WordCamp Planning

WordCamp Planning

If you dive into the world of WordCamp organisation (and I highly recommend that you do), then you the first place to start is the WordCamp Planning site. It is the central resource for all WordCamp organisers all over the world and the information it provides you with is invaluable.

Mentors

The final resource that I’m going to list here is one designed specifically for meetup and WordCamp organisers – the mentorship programme. While this isn’t a documented avenue of assistance, it is hugely beneficial. Once you start organising your local meetup and/or WordCamp you will be put in touch with a mentor who has been organising things in their community for a while (if you’re in the EU or Africa then it may even be me). These mentors are a huge help and they will be someone that you can bounce ideas off and find ways to improve your local meetups and WordCamps. I encourage you to take full advantage of your mentor and really dig deep for all the knowledge and experience they have to offer.


With all of these resources available to help you, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t jump into contributions today. So what are you waiting for?

Tips for organising a successful WordPress Meetup

November 18, 2014 in WordPress tips & tricks. 1 Comment

Meetup groups are locally-organized groups that get together for face-to-face events on a regular basis. Anything that brings together 2 or more people to share their WordPress experiences counts – there’s no minimum number of attendees or required format.

- make.wordpress.org/community/meetups/

If that’s the definition of a WordPress meetup, how do you go about organising one?

Continue Reading

How to Use Big Data for Your E-Commerce Business

September 9, 2014 in How to sell online. Leave a comment

Big Data EcommerceWhat is “Big Data,” anyway?

It’s hard to define, and made even more difficult by the world’s inability to agree on what it is.

One generally-accepted standard was laid out by analyst Doug Laney in 2001, and has been in constant use ever since. It’s called “The 3 Vs,” short for volume, variety, and velocity. In other words, Big Data is “a large amount of stuff, being generated very quickly, and incorporating a wide variety of content.” However, some people disagree with this definition, claiming that’s an oversimplification or that other metrics need to be used. Still others claim that Big Data is just “anything too big to deal with in an Excel spreadsheet.”

But no matter how you personally choose to define it, the truth is that it’s a catch-all term for any data sets too large to process using conventional methods. It can sometimes take parallel software running on thousands of servers just to handle it.

Intimidating stuff.

Continue Reading

4 Plugins to Set up A/B Testing for Your Online Store in Minutes

April 29, 2014 in Blog, How to sell online. 10 Comments

A/B TestngWhen you do business online, you have to conduct tests.

But why?

Well, testing allows you to see precisely what elements of your online store are effective and which ones leave room for improvement. They show you which call-to-action drives the most conversions and which one is dead on arrival. A/B testing allows you to tweak, fiddle, and fuss with your site in the best possible way.

Continue Reading

Increase E-Commerce Sales With These 4 Design Tips

April 22, 2014 in Blog, How to sell online. 8 Comments

Having a good product or service is your best bet for running a successful online store. But how you present that product or service plays a major role in how it is received by your target audience and whether or not you’ll see your conversion rate slope upwards.

Yep, I’m talking about web design here. You obviously want a site that looks good, but there are some specific things you need to pay attention to if you want to boost sales on your e-commerce site.

Continue Reading

Top 5 Things You Need Before Setting Up An Online Store

April 10, 2014 in How to sell online. 4 Comments

9441219583_86ed1abe5eDelving into the world of e-commerce is an exciting prospect. You get to sell your goods online and participate in building something from scratch. Those are two ideas worth getting excited about if you ask me.

Still, it’s not wise to jump in head first without a plan of action. Whether you build your site on WordPress or another platform – using WooCommerce or without – you need to have a few essential things in place before you hang that digital “Open” sign and process your first transaction.

Continue Reading

12 Fantastic WordPress Plugins You’ve Never Heard Of

April 9, 2014 in WordPress tips & tricks. 21 Comments

WordPress offers a vast diversity of plugins that can enhance your website. But those same plugins often suffer from technical errors and weak support. There are a lot of okay plugins floating around out there, but you shouldn’t settle for mediocrity – if you’re going to put the time and effort into creating a website, you should strive to find only the best.

Luckily, there are a lot of good choices out there. Many of them are well-known plugins and themes. However, if you dig a little bit deeper you cad find some real the diamonds in the rough.

Continue Reading

How to Avoid Getting Overwhelmed as a Startup WordPress Developer

March 13, 2014 in WordPress tips & tricks. 8 Comments

overwhelmed WordPress developerWhen first starting out as a WordPress developer, it’s easy to feel frustrated and overwhelmed. There is simply a lot to keep track of with regards to site customization and this can make it difficult to determine what elements you should use and what ones you should avoid.

You may even be tempted to use as many relevant plugins and widgets as possible, but doing so can slow down site performance. Slowing down performance is a major deterrent to visitors, so it all comes down to your best judgment. And that can put the pressure on.

Continue Reading

How to Save Time When Writing in WordPress

January 24, 2014 in WordPress tips & tricks. 8 Comments

wordpress writing

Finding time to write your next blog post can be a challenge. We’re all on tight deadlines and over-scheduled, aren’t we?

Still, when it’s time to get working and you’ve cracked your knuckles in preparation for composing your next masterpiece, it’s easy to get caught up in the minutiae of site management and lose sight of the task at hand: writing an excellent blog post!

So, without further adieu, here are some things that help me to write faster and more efficiently in WordPress. A nice side effect of these tips? You’ll produce better content, too.

Continue Reading

A Guide to Optimal Image Compression in WordPress

January 9, 2014 in WordPress tips & tricks. 8 Comments

image compression guideMany bloggers put so much of their focus on writing up decent posts that they lose sight of some arguably essential details.

Like images. If they do remember to include high-quality, thought-provoking images, they miss out on the opportunity to optimize these images for the best end-user experience. This means compressing those images so they load in a flash. Without losing discernible quality, of course.

Continue Reading

6 Awesome Features That Will Sell You On Jetpack

January 7, 2014 in WordPress tips & tricks. 26 Comments

jetpack by wordpressTell me if you’ve heard these phrases before. Maybe you’ve even uttered them yourself: “Jetpack is so overrated.” “Jetpack isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.” “Jetpack is bloated beyond belief!”

A lot of people hold onto these beliefs about Jetpack but I’m here to tell you that these statements couldn’t be farther from the truth. In fact, Jetpack packs a serious punch, offering up features aplenty that serve the needs of all WordPress users. Bloggers looking for simple tools and developers looking for robust options will both be pleased by this plugin.

For those who don’t know, Jetpack is a plugin created by Automattic. It features numerous “modules” that can be activated in order to benefit from their features.

Today, I’m dead set on convincing you to use Jetpack for the first time (or to dust it off and give it a try once again). Will you accept the challenge?

Continue Reading

WooNav: Integrated in WP 3.0

February 15, 2010 in Blog, Team news. 76 Comments

Two weeks ago when we launched theWooNav we knew it was something special and would be well received by our users, together with our recent release of WooFramework V2 our theme development was certainly hotting up. Then, out of the blue, we were contacted by Jane Wells of the WordPress Core UX development team who was planning the final iterations of the menu management system’s core features for WordPress 3.0. Unknown to us Jane had been playing around with our WooNav functionality:

We have a developer working on it, and have gone through several rounds of community feedback and iteration, and it strikes me that what we’re probably going to end up with is a lot like what you guys have in your Custom Navigation option, so I thought I’d get in touch with you guys to talk about it

After a few emails it was pretty obvious that this made perfect sense for both us and the core team. It would save the WordPress developers hours of coding to build something that already existed and did the job well, and WooThemes would finally be acknowledged for it’s work in furthering WordPress theme development.

Continue Reading