Changing blog to home page look,,

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  1. Bill Manning profile image62
    Bill Manningposted 12 years ago

    Today I am changing my wordpress tourist site, which is in a blog format, to a magazine style theme using a Genesis framework theme.

    I think even today many people don't like a blog layout and get confused about how to find what they are looking for in a blog layout.

    A magazine layout gives the home page a full, normal website look. Also since this theme is designed with adsense in mind I think I will get more clicks with it.

    Only problem is that it's a bit harder to simply change from one theme to another. There will be a few hours today where my site will look like hell as I change it. hmm

    1. FagunRain profile image57
      FagunRainposted 12 years agoin reply to this


      1. Bill Manning profile image62
        Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

        Hubpages does not allow you to post a link in the forums to your own sites. However if you go to my profile, you can see my link, which is the first one. Thanks. smile

  2. Bill Manning profile image62
    Bill Manningposted 12 years ago

    Well in case anyone here cares, I got my site updated to my new look. I already have better clicks from adsense on it today than normal.

    Using a theme that is made for adsense really makes a difference. It has a 300X250 ad block at the top of the sidebar for adsense.

    Those types of adsense blocks always have great image ads that makes them seem like a part of your site and gets lots of clicks.

    Got to go tweak it some more now. smile

    1. lakeerieartists profile image63
      lakeerieartistsposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Bill, gorgeous site, and love the front page.  The magazine style definitely has its uses, and is perfect for a site like this, because of the excitement factor. 
      Plus the big ads make sense on this site because they are normal for travel stuff.
      I have been working my way towards doing something like this for Cleveland, with a slightly different slant.  We are not as exciting for just tourists as Orlando or even Nelle's Cape Cod but we do get a lot of travelers here for Rock and Rock Hall, and we will have a new casino and convention center soon, as well as huge medical mart.
      It also is a good link in to my gallery.
      Can I ask what theme you are using?

      1. Bill Manning profile image62
        Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

        Hi there lakeerieartists. I am using the Genesis framework with the Lifestyle child theme.

        It is a paid theme system. You buy the basic framework, which is very configurable. You can make it have 1, 2, 3 or no sidebars at all.

        Then you buy the child themes for it, which are different. Each one has it's own different styles. The Lifestyle child theme I got has the magazine layout.

        It's a great system and with one theme you can make different sites look very different.

        I am going to start buying up very small niche domains and making sites with this theme that all look a bit different.

        Then in 6 months or so sell them for a few hundred on Flippa. smile

  3. Lisa HW profile image62
    Lisa HWposted 12 years ago

    Bill, I went to it out of curiosity (and interest in "magazine style").  I'm not a good one to judge potential improvements in performance; but it does have a professional and polished look.  For what it's worth, I like it.   smile

    1. Bill Manning profile image62
      Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks for looking at it Lisa. I still have a few things to do to it but I like it better than a normal blog style.

      I made a little over 8 bucks today just from the top header ad and the top sidebar ad. big_smile

  4. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 12 years ago

    Very nicely done. I'm very impressed (and a little jealous). I'm at the starting phase of a site like this. Spent hours in the cold today taking photos.

    Just a note though. I did not see any ads to the right in the big block. Should I have?

    1. Bill Manning profile image62
      Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Ahh, you noticed. It just so happens that my last two blog post where very different from my normal content. As a result the last two days my home page has been getting blank or public ads. hmm

      I assume tomorrow once my latest and a more relative post is out the ads will be back to normal.

      If you click on any page or post except for my last two post, you will see all the ads fill with text or image ads.

      Thank you for saying it looks nice. I do think the layout will get me more clicks and people will stay around a bit longer. Many prefer to see a normal home page rather than a blog format, and I think this is a nice compromise. smile

  5. Mutiny92 profile image64
    Mutiny92posted 12 years ago

    nice job on the website!  I sent you a note via hubpages.

    1. Bill Manning profile image62
      Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks, I replied to your email and explained what is happening. smile

  6. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 12 years ago

    Yep, everything else I checked had the ads. You're right they really are sweet ads. Very impressive. I can see why you are getting great click throughs today.

    The pages load very quickly. Nice organization as well.

    1. Bill Manning profile image62
      Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks again. Yes most people find my site via post in searches, so they show well. I did change those Linkshare ads a bit however.

      Normally you use their codes and the images are served via their own server. However they often are slow, making my site jerk and jump as each one loads.

      So I downloaded the images and host them myself, keeping the affiliate code of course. I do that with almost all Amazon images as well. Thanks again. smile

  7. travelespresso profile image68
    travelespressoposted 12 years ago

    I had a look at your Orlando site Bill and it looks and reads very well.  I hope you continue to get those clicks at a rapidly increasing rate.  It looks like you should.

    Was it difficult to do?

    1. Bill Manning profile image62
      Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks travelespresso. No it was not too hard to do, just took a long time. All the different sections are done by widgets. I did add a few extras I had to do a bit more coding with.

  8. SiddSingh profile image61
    SiddSinghposted 12 years ago


    The website looks great - as does your other website on electronics.

    But there is just one thing that I would like to point out - the navigation menu.

    I see it is designed to be a dropdown - both for pages and categories. When you hover over any item in the menu - the other items cascade down - as they will.

    However, when they do cascade, they overlap on the top 728x90 adsense banner. Now, it is nowhere mentioned so explicitly - but I would be careful NOT to do that. This is what the policies say -

    “Google ads, search boxes or search results may not be --- Obscured by elements on a page.”

    (P.S. - Do you use the WP Maintenance Mode plugin?)

    1. Bill Manning profile image62
      Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Thank you SiddSingh. As for the menu going over the ads, I never thought of that. However I have seen many other sites that do that also.

      So I don't think that counts with what Google is saying. I think they mean if an ad is always covered or hidden by stuff on your site. They don't want people to try to get clicks by being sneaky. smile

  9. Ign Andy profile image56
    Ign Andyposted 12 years ago

    Very nice indeed. But it looks like you put one categories twice :  "Most Recently Added Articles" on top of the page and "Most Recent Article Post" at the bottom.

    I plan to revamp my sites (now still using free template) but still can't decide which theme will suit me better (my short list are: Headway, Genesis and Thesis). I know very little HTML and none CSS. Any suggestion?.

    1. Bill Manning profile image62
      Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Hi there Ign Andy. Yeah I'm not sure what I will do about that. I wanted the most recent post at the top so they can see them fast.

      Yet at the bottom is a good place to make the post bigger and a nice way to end the page with recent post. I will change it somehow, just not sure how yet.

      Wordpress does not take much of knowing HTML or CSS if you get the right theme. Genesis seems very nice with everything done with widgets. smile

  10. profile image0
    Nelle Hoxieposted 12 years ago

    Paula, when I travel with Matt to exotic places like Pittsburgh, I always look for a site like the one you're planning. Most of the local travel sites are just Made for Adsense garbage. If you wrote one for Cleveland, I bet I would have use for it some day!

    It's so wonderful when you find a site that really takes the time to tell you some great restaurants and galleries and museums - and about the local history and events.

    1. Bill Manning profile image62
      Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Those are great points. I need to write more about local restaurants and stuff like that. Unfortunately Orlando is a very plastic, chain type of town. hmm

    2. lakeerieartists profile image63
      lakeerieartistsposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Exactly what I am planning to do.

  11. Pcunix profile image91
    Pcunixposted 12 years ago

    Nicely done.

    I switched to magazine format several years ago.  I left the old Blog format as an available link for several years - some people stuck with that for a long, long time.

    The nice thing about NOT using Wordpress is that it easy to give people a choice of how they want to access your site.  However, WordPress themes are much better looking than anything I can do.

    1. Bill Manning profile image62
      Bill Manningposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks Pcunix. I've got a few more tricks up my sleeve, not done with it yet. I'm adding my own forum in there and lots more pages.

      Then I will start selling ad spots in pages and sidebars. Tourist sites have dozens of paid ads in pages for "pet friendly hotels" "best local eateries" small attractions and so on. smile

    2. lakeerieartists profile image63
      lakeerieartistsposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      You know, this is an interesting discussion.  I have some older blogs that I put on Blogger a long time ago on niche topics.  One is precious metal clay.  That is a standard one page blog, that has continued to get traffic, and done pretty darn well, since I really do not do much including posting on it.

      But I think for the more complex site/blogs it needs to be a better looking site so that it actually is a blog that looks like a website which wordpress is great for.

      Nelle, because Cleveland is a city that gets mostly traffic based on conventions, I am building this site on that premise, stuff to do on the side for locals and convention visitors.  smile  If you do visit, I want to meet you, in person.


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