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Easiest way to add a styled blog page to a site

Discussion in 'Website Design Forum:' started by bamme, Oct 9, 2010.

  1. bamme

    bamme Senior Member

    Hi all

    Im trying to make a sorta SEO idea come into place, for one of my clients. They say theyre happy for me to try (I asked them if I could use their site to try it, because I want to see if it works so I can confidently say to people in the future I can use the strategy).

    I need to attach a blog to their site in some way. My proposal was to just have it as an external set of pages and not brand it up because it'll just be generic aggregated existing stuff on the topic, not specific stuff to their company.

    They say theyre only happy for me to do a blog if it looks like a blog page of their site though, and I've only ever styled a wordpress theme in a minor way eg changing images, dimensions, colours, fonts. I know you can make a wordpress blog look like a site, and have done this before, but only from scratch - Ive never interlinked a blog function with an existing site.

    Can i ask you guys, is there an easier way to just add the posts part of a wordpress blog to a page of the site? Im just thinking rather than do a whole theme that looks exactly like a site, someone could tell me how to just insert the posts to a .php page with mostly html, for example using include or something?

    I'm clueless with php, thats why i find blog stylign difficult. Can anyone help me out by letting me know what the most efficient easy way is?

  2. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    Why don't you do it on a sub domain and then link to it like normal, that's the way I'm looking at doing mine if I do it.. ie. for their blog and as their main site.

    As to styling, last time I checked it was still done with css/images like a normal website. It's just done in php so it can be split into sections, ie for post, header, footer that type of thing. As to the easiest way to style it, find a (free) template and change it's images :)
  3. Greg

    Greg Active Member

    Hi Emma,

    You're probably better off adding some of the HTML elements from their site into a simple blog layout? The only way of getting WP posts onto a separate site entirely would be via RSS, which could lead to it being hard to style the posts, or a direct call to the WP database which might be tricky to setup.

    How complex is the site design?
  4. bamme

    bamme Senior Member

    Thanks for the replies people :)

    "The only way of getting WP posts onto a separate site entirely would be via RSS" -- this is what I was thinking actually, although I wouldn't know the ins and outs of setting it up.

    As mentioned though with the domain/subdomain thing, Im not sure if it's going to be hard if I wanted to set it up all on one domain (although I think a subdomain would still have the same seo effect im unsure)

    And yeah the site design is simple to look at but is not the simplest of html/css -- its not super complex but has a lot of things relying on things in diff parts of the layout:

    Sanya China Travel - Tailor Made Holidays to China and the Far East

    It's in php with mostly html elements, but does use includes, and some 'if' statements, so I suppose if I could find a blog layout that had this structure I may be able to do it.. would this be very hard for me do you think? As a first go?
  5. Jazajay

    Jazajay Active Member

    Hi Emma,
    If you are looking at this from purely a SEO way, then a sub domain is the way to go as search engines class sub domains as a seperate site, therefore if you talored it to the products could mean you rank 4 out of 10 of the search terms on that page. Bare in mind theres more to it than just that. :)
  6. bamme

    bamme Senior Member

    Oh I read that if you make any sorta site on the same server and use it as a seperate site tosimply boost another site, there's a risk of google ignoring the efforts of the subdomain site, is that not true? Sorry I can't find a reference..but I was going to make an external blog smeplace else not branded or designed like the site but just promoting it, this one to be designed like a site page is for real natural content that's just useful and good. I'm gonna try and see which one affects anything most.

    Is a subdomain the easiest/most straightforward way to do it? If its just natural normal not specifically seo'd content then I doubt itd be a risk if that is true

    Thanks for the help :)
  7. Jazajay

    Jazajay Active Member

    Well be careful what you read/how you interpret it. A sub domain has been classed as a separate site for years in the search engines eyes and I haven't read anything from reputable sources that says it still isn't.

    But I imagine what they are/where on about is again have to be looked at in context. If you do it to game them then it will be obvious, however if you do it because it makes sense then it will pay dividends. This is where trust and the other factors comes in and these always have to be in your mind.

    Lets take a fictional site that has a blog then starts a forum as it has grown in users and it makes sense for the site.

    The blog is their main domain but as the forum has heavier/expected to traffic it makes sense to split it up on a sub domain and thus speed up the site by bringing in page elements from two different servers and thus reduce page load and server strain.

    Now as both the domains are different, blog and forum, it therefore can be seen as two different resources. If the site has trust then it all goes as a tick in the like box.

    Never just take one factor as a bad thing, the search engines look at thousands to determine the index never one, even sites with Malware hold good results even if thy do have a big red page saying this site can effect your computer. Always do what makes sense for the site first and foremost.

    I would always want to have 10k visitors less a month but have a conversion rate of 70% rather than 10k more a month and have a conversion rate of 1%. I'll make a hell of a lot more money with 10k less people as the site works. That's where your efforts should always go first and foremost. Then if it makes sense to the search engines do it. :)
  8. bamme

    bamme Senior Member

    Good point about thinking about where to put the blog and how to think about seo in context to the content -- the offsite offsite blog that im going to set up on a totally different server *will* be just to boost this one, in a non-spammy way. but this one is for real content.

    by subdomain you guys mean right.. is this any more difficult than a standard wordpress install? taking that point and considering this blog is less about SEO or at least will be a lot less obvious about it, and is really for the purpose of keeping the site alive, updated, etc and opening potential of syndicating with social media and giving to news aggregators, if it's more complicated, i might just go with a subdirectory within the main domain..

    I've found this tutorial for how to style a blog layout to match a site -- is this any good?
  9. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    well thats what I meant :)

    As to setting it all up, on my host it's just a couple of changes in the cpanel config - header domains, icon for sub domains .

    In regards to wordpress, my host has softaculous installed so it does it all for me, look to see if something like that is available :)
  10. bamme

    bamme Senior Member

    hmm in that case maybe its hard..I'll try to find a tutorial :) I think i can make a subdomain pretty easy, its just i dont have that softaculous thing.. :)

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