Don’t Remove Your Site Title – Hide It!

Most WordPress themes allow you to upload a header image, including ours.  But your header image may also include your logo with a unique font style and color. Then once you upload it and  check it out on the front end you see your image logo and your site title above it.

So you remove the site title and tag line by going to Settings > General which is a REALLY BIG MISTAKE!!!

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Example of a header image and site title both active

You may think removing the site title this way solves the duplication of your site title and it does. But what happens is search engines no longer see your site title in the source code and site visitors don’t see your site title in browser tabs or bookmarks.

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How your site appears in the browser tab with the site title removed.
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How your site will appear in peoples bookmarks.

The solution is to hide your site title so it doesn’t appear above your uploaded logo image but remains visible where you need it for search engines and visitors alike. Here’s how the proper way to remove your site title and tag line.

  1. Go to Appearance > Customize
  2. Click on Site Identity
  3. Uncheck the box next to “Display Header Text”
  4. Save your changes by clicking the blue button at the top that says “Save & Publish”
artbiz-remove-site-title-wordpress-step1
Step 1 – Navigate to Appearance > Customize
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Step 2 – Uncheck the box to display header text
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Site title and tag line are hidden from view

Now the site title will still appear where it is needed most and your new header image/logo is presented the way you want it with your site title hidden.

artbiz-remove-site-title-wordpress-favicon Footnote: There’s a new feature that will add add a favicon (website icon) that will appear in browsers and other apps.  Cool! Thanks WordPress!

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How to Open WordPress Menu Link in New Window

There’s a little known button concealed in the screen options menu that will allow you to have your links open in a new browser window.

Standard web practice is NOT to have links open in new windows as it is thought that in the end there would be to many windows open which will inconvenience the user.

It’s acceptable to have some external links, like social media open in new windows. Also links to documents like PDF’s is good practice to open in a new window.

So where is this mysterious function? Start by navigating to Appearance > Menus in the admin menu of your WordPress site.

Step 1

appearance-menus

1. Navigate to Appearance and click on Menus


Step 2
screen-options

2. Look up to the top right corner and click on the Screen Options tab


Step 3
show-on-screen

3. Check the box next to Link Target by clicking on it


Step 4
menu-item

4. Click on the menu item that you want to open in a new window and check the box next to “open link in a new window/tab”

It’s always easy when you know where things are.

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Tricks and Tips for Using WordPress Menus

My clients questions are a constant source of blog post inspiration. Frances Vettergreen inspired this tutorial when she asked;

“I’d like to group the menu selections for the art and the info (statement, cv etc); is there a way to insert a space in there?

In other words what Frances wants to do is this:

Featured
Current Work
Small Fruit
Plein Air
By Series
Bio/CV
Statement
Contact
Blog

With a space to separate her texts and portfolios. In essence insert a space between By Series and Bio/CV.

Here are 3 tricks and tips for using WordPress Menus to accomplish what Frances what’s to do.

OPTION 1

With WordPress Menus you can create as many menus as you like. Using WordPress Widgets you can add menus to your sidebar or any widget area using the Custom Menu widget.

There’s only one draw back to using the menu widget to split your main navigation. Often the widgets style (font sizes and colours) could be different from the styling of the main navigation. They are in Artbiz themes in order to apply importance to elements.  Your menu could look like the image below, not ideal.

menu2

OPTION 2

This option keeps the menu styling the same for all items.

To do this create a custom menu item and change the label to an underscore or another symbol to break the line. Once it is added to the menu open it and remove the link.

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On the live site it looks like this…better. The styling of all the menu items remains consistent.

menu

OPTION 3

Simulate nesting by indenting with a keyboard symbol. For example…
menu-example
This is so simple, you’re going to wonder why you never thought of this.

Inside your WordPress admin go to Appearance > Menus and select your main menu.

Each menu item expands down by clicking the downward arrow in the top right corner.

Under “Navigation Label” type in a keyboard symbol. Ideas could be…
: Featured
:: Current Work
~ Small Fruit
– Plein Air
| By Series

Portfolio and Texts can be dummy parents, meaning they are menu items with the links removed. To do this add a custom menu item to the menu and then once it’s in there open it and remove the link. To further differentiate PORTFOLIOS and TEXTS could be all capitals.

There’s a full tutorial on menus including the steps to make a dummy parent at https://artbiz.ca/school/appearance-options/create-and-manage-wordpress-menus/

The label does not have to be the exact page title that you entered in the editor. As the example below shows, I shortened the label and added a title attribute which is a tool tip that appears when a visitor hovers over the menu item.

menus

There you have 3 tricks & tips for using WordPress Menus. Which option do you like the best?

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How to use Your Blog for Exhibition History

In this post I provide step by step instructions on how to use your blog for Exhibition History. By using your blog posts for listing your exhibition history you will not only have something to blog about but also have a way to share more about your work.

To see a live example of what I mean by an expanded CV please visit my exhibitions category at Kim Bruce Fine Art

STEP 1 Create a new category

Go to Posts > Categories and create a new category named “Exhibitions”. Don’t forget to click the   big blue button the says “Add New Category” (I know goes without saying).

create-new-category

STEP 2 Create a new blog post

Go to Posts > Add New and create a blog post with the name of your exhibition.

Add the invitation as the featured image or any other good quality image that represents the show. I set the invite from my last solo show at Dade Art & Design Lab as the feature image of this post.

You”ll find the “Set Feature Image” to the right of the editor near the bottom

feature-image

If you use one of the David themes this image will appear full width across the top of the page as long as the image is at least 640 pixels wide. If it is a smaller image then will still appear above the post title only smaller. For other themes insert the image on the page. If your theme will show a thumbnail with excerpts then make sure you set a feature image as well as inserting on the page.

Now for the content. Add the exhibition details, date, opening reception, etc; just like a regular invite. If you have an exhibition statement you can use it here or write something about the show and the work. Other content to consider would be reviews, links to reviews, interviews, anything to do with the show.

Post images from the exhibition. These can be images of the work using a tag gallery from your NextGen Gallery. You can find full instructions on creating a tag gallery in NextGen Gallery here.

tag-gallery

Alternatively you can generate a Nextgen Gallery specifically for the exhibit and simply add the gallery short code to the post. Also include installation shots, pictures from the opening and images of people interacting with your work.

STEP 3 Select a publish date

Produce a number of posts to include in the new exhibition category by selecting from your past exhibitions and making a new post for each. In WordPress you can back date your publish day to be any time in the past, so back date to a week or more before the scheduled opening. If you prefer not to create a bunch of new posts and do all the backdating just start from your most recent exhibition and go forward from there.

publish-date

Don’t forget to select the new category and add some tags before publishing, otherwise your post is going to be filed as “uncategorized” and won’t show up in the “Exhibitions” category.

STEP 4 Add the category as a menu item

The Last step is to put the new category into your menu. You can add a category as a menu item by selecting it under Appearance > Menus. Once it is in the menu it looks like a regular menu item only it goes to your blog category archive.

add-menu

Below is a screenshot snippet of the “Exhibitions” category in my menu at KimBruce.ca. See the entire screen at my fine art site.

category-menu

That’s it, you now know how to use your blog for exhibition history and there by have content to blog about and an exhibitions archive.

If you create an exhibition history using a blog category please come back here and post us a link in the comment area so we can all come and visit your exhibition history.

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WordPress Tutorials for Artists

About the WordPress Tutorials

The WordPress Tutorials for Artists is a member’s site for artists, or anyone who wants to learn WordPress. Inside you will find detailed step by step instructions for adding, managing and modifying content and image portfolios for your website and/or blog with WordPress.

Artists are visual people; therefore presenting concepts via images with descriptive bubbles and instructional text fits more with the artistic process. Images are road maps with everything laid out as it actually exists in the real world, or the virtual world, as the case may be.

With the WordPress for Tutorials Artists you will learn how to use WordPress with a multitude of instructional images and videos.

Artbiz Customized Theme and WordPress Plus clients are automatically registered for the tutorial site for free.

Tutorial Organization

The tutorials cover the basics in each section, trying to take a progressive approach so that each section builds on knowledge and skill acquired earlier in the tutorials. That said, you can access any section of the school as needed to accomplish specific tasks or simply to refresh your memory.

All the screenshots and usage come from WordPress installed on this site or others, but they apply equally to WordPress installed on any site. Since WordPress periodically upgrades its functionality and adds new features, this course will be updated whenever there is a new WordPress release. As a member of this site you will be automatically notified by email when ever there is a new or update tutorial.

Even if you feel you have it all under control, check back from time to time for information on new features, tips and tricks.

Objectives

The intention is for you to learn how to manage your online portfolio and text content, as well as administer your WordPress site. By using the tutorials, you will be able to:

  • administer and backup your content
  • change the appearance of your site
  • add functionality through the use of widgets
  • make your site content more interesting and engaging
  • format your text content and images for search engines
  • understand the basics of blogging
  • manage your portfolio and images online
  • resize your images for the web

It is the objective of Artbiz and the WordPress for Artists Tutorials to introduce artists to a community of like-minded individuals that share a common goal: website self-sufficiency through the use of WordPress.

Also on this site you will find a growing list of resources to help you with WordPress and with your art marketing. The Members Area, exclusive to School Members, offers free downloads from art marketing courses and discounts on instructional art videos.

If you are at all uncomfortable with managing your website yourself, Artbiz offers website management services.

Read the full WordPress for Artists Syllabus


Bev Tosh

Your tutorials are very well written and illustrated. While some assume a moderately knowledgeable user, they make sense to a neophyte such as myself. You have given me the tools to learn how to highlight the visibility of my website to search engines while protecting my web images from appropriation – and so much more. I would strongly recommend your tutorials to all artists.
Bev Tosh


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SEO for Art Websites

SEO for Art Websites

Have you applied any SEO for your art website?  You have probably heard the term and have even been contacted by some SEO company promising to get you to the top slot in search engine results – HA!

First off I should tell you what SEO for art websites is, we’ll get back to my “HA!” in a minute.

SEO is an acronym for Search Engine Optimization, where one optimizes their art website to make it not only search engine friendly but, first and foremost, visitor friendly.

This entails everything from incorporating keywords, (which are actual short phrases), into headings and content, to adding Alt and Title descriptions to links and images.

To have your art website indexed by a search engine, basically, what happens is that the crawler, robot, spider, what ever you want to call it, follows links, gathers info, and adds that info into the search engine database. As you know, Google is a search engine, as in Bing, and Yahoo, etc. In essence, crawlers find web pages, read what’s on them, and index that info into their database.

Search Engines index your art web page with the information you provide. Since the Internet is mostly a word-based medium and art websites consist mostly of images, and robots can not read images, and the only thing on your home page is an image, well, you can see where we are going with this.

A lot of art websites’ home page consist of either a single image or a slide show (they can’t read slide shows either). Robots can see that there is an image because they can read the image tag in the source code, but they have no idea what the image is about. It is true; search engine robots do not know that the single image on your home page is a blue landscape. You have to tell it by filling in the alternative and title attributes for each and every image on your art website. This is the way to have your images properly indexed, the way you want them indexed, by Google or any other search engine, for that matter.

Here is a list of what needs to be done to help index and rank any art website:

#1: SEO Friendly Images

Traffic to your art site can grow substantially with proper search engine indexing of your images. Using the Alt and Title descriptions is the way to do this and have your images indexed how and where you want them to be. Your images should also have your name and the name of the artwork in the title of the jpg. Like so: ©your-name-art-name.jpg

#2: Meta Descriptions:

Meta data tells search engines what your site is about and it shows up in search results, which in turn tells people what your site is about. You can hand craft this 140 character sentence, otherwise the search engine is just going to grab what ever text you have on the page, that is if you have any text on the page.

#3 Keyword Placement

Keywords are not actually single words, but groups of words or phrases. They pertain to the content and subject of the page and are what you think people will enter into search queries to find the information on your website. The higher up on the page the more prominant they become and subsequently more weight is assigned by the search engine.

#4 Using Heading Tags

If you have subheadings inside your post, make sure you actually tag them, and tag them according to a hierarchy. Search engines add value to headings but that doesn’t mean every paragraph gets a heading. On this page, for example, I have applied the H3 heading tag to this list as each item talks about a specific topic.

#5: Linking Strategy

Every time you link to a page, post or other site, you are passing “SEO juice” from every single page or post you are linking from. Having other sites link to your site also increases your relevancy in the eyes of search engines.  “SEO Juice” is internet slang referring to the substance which flows between web pages via their hyperlinks. Pages with lots of links pointing to them acquire much ‘SEO Juice’ and pages which link to highly ‘juicy’ pages acquire some reflected ‘SEO Juice’.

#6 Use a SEO Plugin

A good SEO plugin can help cover your butt for those pages that you do not optimize by simply filling in the master template. There are a number of them out there and if you use WordPress for your art website, I recommend either All in One SEO or WordPress SEO by Yoast, both are free from WordPress.org.

The SEO for Art Websites Tutorial at the WordPress for Artists School, covers all the above topics, along with instructions on how to apply the techniques using WordPress.

If you are an Artbiz client this resource is free for you to use. Just contact me for the registration details at the WordPress for Artists School and have at it. Even if you are not an Artbiz client you can still register.

Oh my HA! There are SEO companies that will promise to get your website to the top of page one in Google. Typically they are using an obscure keyword, making it easy for them to increase your ranking for just that one keyword. But what good is it if nobody searches using that particular keyword.

Creating good content and optimizing your images for search engines is a way to provide SEO for Art Websites. Adding text to your images pages and sprinking your content with good keywords is a bit of work, but if you write naturally, with a bit of practice, you’ll provide your site visitors with meaningful content and a memorable experience when they visit your art website.

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