Recommended products, services, and tools
We recommend the following services and products to help you get EVEN MORE VALUE from your Added Value website...
Note: Not all websites have the same requirements. Sometimes the "best in class" is not the best choice for your needs. It may be more than you need or it may offer more features but may be more difficult a non-professional to use. We ask our customers to contact us for guidance regarding their specific needs. Our recommendations to you will be based on your own "bigger picture" - your functionality needs, ease of use, compatibility, cost, technical matters, and more.
- Not all web hosting services are created equal. For WordPress websites, we have had the best service, support and pricing from BlueHost. You don't get all the hype and cross-selling like you do from other hosting providers.
- BlueHost hosting Prices start around $5.95 per month depending on the length of agreement.
- Contact BlueHost for information and ordering
Domain Name Registration
- GoDaddy has the best prices and support. However, we do not recommend GoDaddy for WordPress websites.
- With hosting from BlueHost you usually get a new domain name free for the first 12 months.
- NameCheap - I hear that they live up to their name although I haven't used them myself.
Premium WordPress Themes - also known as "templates"
You might call them templates but in WordPress, they're called themes. There are a lot of good free themes available. However, with a premium (i.e., paid) theme, you get higher quality plus more support and consistency. With a free theme it's more likely that the developer may stop updating the theme. That can become an issue in terms of security and compatibility. Premium themes are generally more extendable.
I have used and personally recommend premium themes from all of these sources. The best one for you depends on your needs. Contact me if you need recommendations.
- WooThemes - large variety of good looking themes. Updated and enhanced regularly.
- Genesis theme framework by StudioPress
- Dynamik Web Builder and Genesis Extender Plugin - Either one requires the Genesis theme framework
- Elegant Themes - some of the most beautiful themes available and easy to use. Get their entire collection of about 80 themes for $80.
- Headway - The best "drag and drop" theme creator!
- Theme Forest - hundreds of WordPress themes (and regular web templates) - Theme Forest is marketplace for hundreds of developers selling their themes. Although Theme Forest has quality standards, what you get depends on the individual developer so you need to be careful here.
Security & Backup for WordPress Websites
- BackupBuddy from IThemes backs up your WordPress websites. And much more. It's the fastest, most reliable backup and it's recognized in the WordPress community as the best. Nothing else comes close. It's a small price to pay and will save you a lot of time, headaches, and money. It's the best you can get but you should have nothing less.
- Sucuri protects your WordPress website from hacking, viruses, spam, and other malware. It protects your website from attacks of all sorts. And if you haven't been attacked, I assure you that you will be attacked eventually. And you should be aware that most attacks happen right under your eyes and you'll never see it. If you have been attacked, you deal with a real person who will clean all of the gremlins out of your site and restore it to its former healthy condition.
WordPress forms management
- Gravity Forms - the most powerful and capable premium plugin for managing forms on WordPress websites. Many 3rd party extensions are available for additional functionality.
- Contact Form 7 - Not quite as powerful as GravityForms and not as easy to use but it's the most powerful of the free plugins.
- Sliders, plugins, stock photo sources, and more.
- Video manual for the Yoast WordPress SEO plugin
- CodeCanyon - Premium WordPress plugins for all purposes
- GravityView - The best way to display Gravity Forms entries on your website
CSS Hero gives you ultimate control over the styling of your website!