Mystic Country Connecticut Blog

See Mystic Country CT – WordPress Website

Brand new blog launched to showcase and discuss all the exciting things going on in and around Mystic Country Connecticut. I was contracted to build this site with the objective to create a website that could be custom designed, easy to update and manage, scalable for future growth, and easy to track and share online. Phew, no small order but I believe we hit this one out of the park using the WordPress CMS.

My client had a VERY tight budget for this project and a particular aversion to the Typepad blogging platform because she already manages a sites using that system. Unfortunately with the requirements for this project it became apparent very quickly that Typepad would not be able to get the job done because of lack of template options and relatively strict code customizing options available to developers. So to pull this off within the budget, time frame, and meet the client’s design and feature needs WordPress turned out to be a much better solution because of the vast selection of themes, customization options, and array of plug-ins available to extend the features of the finished product.

Theme Design and Customization

This new blog started out by using a WordPress theme called Hemsida. I selected this theme as the starting point because it featured a clean article focused layout along with some nice JQuery integration elements for the global site navigation and sidebar tabbed panels component. I worked with the client closely to develop a color palette and design that would best fit the region and audience who would be using the site. I also tweaked some Major elements to the site like the header which now includes a rotating image fade using Javascript and custom Social Media icons that link to the accounts associated with the organization. I added a custom message to the homepage of the blog and also integrated a custom ShareThis button set that appears with every post published in the system that allows anyone to instantly share any information they like on the site through their favorite social media networks.

Some of the plugins that really make this site shine

One of the best things about WordPress (aside from it’s very easy to pick up and use admin interface) are the plug-ins available to enhance and extend your website. There are always the usual standbys that I use for every WordPress site I build (All in one SEO pack, Category Order, Contact Form 7, Google Analytics, Google XML Sitemaps, WP Database Back Up, Login Lockdown, and Technical Support) all designed to better optimize the site, and make it easy for the site owner to secure their platform, manage their information, and get assistance if they need it.

Aside from those there was one plug-in I used on this project that I had not tried before which turned out to be PERFECT for an area tourism website, it’s called Post Google Map. This cool little plug-in lets the post creator add a location to the post they are writing (they can add as many locations per post as they like) and then that places a pin location on a Google Map that display on the website. For this site project I placed the map in the sidebar of the design using a Widget, but you can also embed a larger map in the actual post using a short code. What I really found cool about this plugin is that it changes depending on what your looking at. So if I am viewing an archive list of posts in a category the map in the sidebar will change to show the pins of the locations from ALL of those posts being displayed at that time. AND those pins displayed on the map when you hover over them show a link to the post on the website along with a photo an details about the location. Simply put, very cool.

Do you need a dynamic website for your business?

WordPress is a simple, efficient, easy to use platform that can be designed and implemented to suit just about anyone’s needs. If your tired of not being able to do much of anything with your website and are looking for a way to take control of your online real estate you should contact me today. Tell me about what your looking to do with your site and I can definitely come up with a solution that will meet your need.

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