New Web2.0 SEO WordPress Themes in Development - Your Help Needed !

A few weeks ago, I felt the need for a new set of SEO themes, purely based on CSS (i.e. no HTML tables) and with a Web 2.0 look and Web 2.0 features. I saw the Tigopedia reloaded theme which inspired me to use rounded boxes, but tigopedia is just not flexible enough and the sidebar content comes above the main content in the source, so it´s not well optimized for good search engine rankings.

Since I am developing this new set of themes not only for me, but also for you, I wanted a much more flexible theme, so you can easily change the layout width, the header, the sidebar widths and the whole color scheme. Therefore, I also want to ask you for your input regarding design elements and features that you would like to see in the new theme. Please submit your ideas and suggestions as comments to this post.

You can see the current state of development by selecting the “web2.0″ theme from the theme switcher as your default theme for my blog.

I started with a 3 column theme, with two sidebars on the right (my favorite layout) and a blue color scheme. The borders of header, top navigation, main column and footer are very flexible in width and height. For the sidebar widgets, I created subheading backgrounds and bottom borders (with rounded edges) in different widths (130, 150, 170, 190, 210, 230 pixels), so you can switch between these values (there will be a tutorial showing how to do this).

3 different color schemes are available right now: blue, green, red

In addition to the current layout (3 columns, 2 sidebars on the right), there will be:
- 3 columns with one sidebar on each side
- 2 columns with sidebar on the left
- 2 columns with sidebar on the right

The layouts are all based on the LayoutGala CSS Layouts. For the SEO aspect, these layouts are designed in a way that the main content comes first in the source code, before the sidebars, regardless where the sidebars are located (left of ride side).

The sidebar uses the normal HTML markup for WordPress sidebars (nested unordered lists), so it should work well with any widgets, just in case you are using this feature.

Below each post, there´s a box with links to categories, tags and different social bookmarking sites. Already integrated, the “social marker” button that allows people to bookmark your post to several services at once.

Well, here I am, open to your suggestions.

Remember, these themes are for you, so contribute your ideas to the development !

Social Bookmarks: - (what´s this?) - spread the word!

Stumble Delicious Technorati Digg Reddit socialmarker(more bookmarking services)

17 Comments »

  1. Comment by:
    guido

    Regarding SEO: in order to avoid duplicate content, I have added the robots nofollow meta tag to the following page types:
    any dated based archives pages
    search results pages
    tags index pages

    I´ve read an article that also suggests to add the robots nofollow meta tag to the category index pages, but I don´t agree, as long as we display only excerpts instead of the full posts. I´m thinking of a strategy to use categories to target medium competitive keyphrases while single posts are written to target low competitive /long tail phrases.

  2. Comment by:
    Tom

    It’s All good. Let me know when you’re ready to sell the new themes. Thanks

  3. Comment by:
    Troy

    Hi Guido,

    I really like the Web2.0 3Col Right theme. I am planning to have 10 new mini sites operating by year end and have yet to select which wordpress themes I will use.

    When will these themes be available for download? Also, I assume they will not be free?

  4. Comment by:
    Gaida

    Hi Guido,
    Great new layout. I’ve deinitely been looking for a 3 column layout. Is it possible for us to change the tone of the blue to what is showing on my blog eg Home colour link. What are the advantages of having a dropdown menu for Archives or is it better displayed as a full menu? Do we have the option of making a quote box eg http://lifestylediscoveries.com/blog/recipes/free-barilla-celebrity-cookbook/ within our blog?
    As I like the quotes to stand out.
    Thank you

  5. Comment by:
    Tony

    I’m still using a variant of your 3col SEO template, Guido, although I have been experimenting with Alvin Phang’s Atomic 2 as well in another blog. Personally I like the three column layout because I think the navigation is more user-friendly on the left/top. However, I am seeing more 2 right sidebar layouts, and wonder why you prefer this?

    Alvin’s idea of providing widget spaces at the top and bottom as well as the sides is quite useful, but I’m not completely certain that his design is fully up to speed on SEO at the moment.

    I’m looking forward to your new ideas :)!

    Tony Page

  6. Comment by:
    Lionel

    Yes the new themes look really fresh and clean. Count me in as soon as they are ready.

  7. Comment by:
    Angela

    Hi - I love the New Web2.0 SEO, in blue. It’s perfect just as it is.

    I’m looking for a new theme for a couple of blogs, and this will be great.

    One point — Could you ensure that all the links are underlined? I’ve noticed lately that on a couple of themes that I wanted to use that the links were not underlined, in fact you had to guess where the links were, and this is the real deal breaker for me with a new theme.

    Cheers
    Angela

  8. Comment by:
    John Chan

    I like your idea about the main content comes first in the source code, before the sidebars, regardless where the sidebars are located (left of ride side).
    I think this would give better SEO other than others theme. I’m looking forward for your new idea. Count me on too.
    But can you give me the layout like my current blog ReviewABC.com ?
    I really like this theme layout, but what i did not like is its a little bit to slow and not to good for adsense :(
    Maybe something that clean enough so i can embed my adsense code nicely :D
    Emm what else yea..
    I think thats all that first come in my mind. I’ll let you know later if got another idea in my mind :)

    Keep good work Guido

    Best Regards

    John Chan

  9. Comment by:
    AJ

    I prefer to have the right outside sidebar to be starting at the top of the header space and for the header to only go to the end of the right inside header. The entire top of the blog would be the header and the one column of the right outside sidebar.

    I definitely like the background color to show through between the columns and provide a distinct border. This allows for the item in the sidebar to not have to be as loud because the background color highlights the sidebar box.

    Giving a choice between rounded widgets and squared off widgets would be great. Best would be the ability to have both allowing us to highlight a particular widget without using vibrant colors to draw attention.

    Thank you.

  10. Comment by:
    Mike

    Guido,

    I really like the look of your new Web2.0 3Col Right WP Theme.
    Add the ability to turn off comments and add the ability to have password protected posts and I’ll take it.

    Thanks for all your efforts.

    -Mike-

  11. Comment by:
    Donovan

    Hi Guido,

    Your efforts are greatly appreciate. It would be great for the theme to have a AD box for banners on the first of the two sidebar.

  12. Comment by:
    Russell

    As with cars, what it “looks” like is irrelevant… it’s what under the hood that counts.

    In a good SEO’d theme:

    * should be 100% css and simple… nice on the eyes.
    * the main colum content should be up as close to the tag as possible.
    * there should be a plugin that puts unique “keyword” and “description” metatags in the header, unique to each post/page.
    * include the ability to switch on/off nofollow tag page by page.

  13. Comment by:
    Photon

    Its been a long time since you’ve last updated us with info.
    Whats up? whats going on?

  14. Comment by:
    Christoph

    I actually like the 2CR Clouds SB Blue theme. But it does not provide valid XHTML code. Would you check the template code to make sure, it is XHTML 1.0 compliant? (validator.w3.org) I offer help optimizing the code towards XHMTL validation.

    /cheers

    Christoph

  15. Pingback by:
    New SEO WordPress Themes Released

    […] As said, I wanted to build very flexible and easily customizable themes in a web2.0 look (with rounded borders) and an improved SEO layout, pure CSS (no HTML table tricks anymore) and still cross-browser compatible. […]

  16. Comment by:
    kabonfootprint

    The more time that is spent dissecting, analyzing, and critiquing a design by the wrong kinds of people the worse that design gets. The same trend applies to the number of people involved in the design process.
    Thx a lot for infomation!

  17. Comment by:
    john braman

    i like your new theme variations. plan on using the 2 sidebars on right and the sidebars on left and right on a few of my blogs. is there s way (maybe a plugin) that i can use to switch between themes? instead of going to admin control panel.. sorry kind of new still.

    thanks,
    john

    Guido replies:

    Hi John,
    to use different variations of my themes, you need to download a copy for each variation. I once thought about making it more dynamic with some kind of plugin or scripting in order to pack everything in one theme and make it easier to switch between the different layouts and edit other aspects, but I haven´t found a programmer with whom I could work together on this project on a long-term basis.

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