Article directories have been popular over the last few years, there are some huge examples of them, such as Go Articles, Ezine Articles and Articles Base. They are popular with internet marketers and site owners as they can submit a unique article to them and receive traffic and back links from these sites. They are good for the article owner as you receive a fresh stream of content being added to your site on a daily basis which you can then monetize. If you have ever wanted to run your own site of this kind, this post is for you: I will show you how to use WordPress and the ArticleDirectory theme from Templatic to set up your own.
- Purchase Article Directory Theme for $65
The domain for this guide is CONNECTARTICLES.com, this is where I have set up the theme for the purpose of this tutorial. You can fully test out the theme and its features there.
Installing the Theme
Once you have WordPress installed, download the theme from Templatic and unzip it. In your WordPress admin screen, click “Appearance” > “Themes” > “Install Themes” > “Upload” you will now be presented with an upload box, use this to upload the theme zip file.
Now click "Activate" under the theme name. Once its activated, you will see a message like so :
Click "Yes, insert sample data please" to populate the site - this will add some categories and initital articles so you can see how the site will look. Its easy to remove these later if you want to.
Before we start configuring the theme, visit “Settings” > “Permalinks” and tick “Custom Structure” and enter this in the box : /%postname% that will make the site use nice search engine friendly urls instead of the default WordPress ones.
Configuring the Article Directory Theme
Now the theme is activated, you will see two new menus added to your admin sidebar - "Blog" and "Article Directory"
The "Blog" menu is if you want to add normal blog posts to your site, the normal "Posts" menu is now for adding articles to the site.
The "Article Directory" manages all aspects of the Articles part of the theme such as the design, payment etc. Lets look through the new options in this menu.
The first option is "Design Settings" click this and you can go through and setup lots of options for the look of your site such as the color scheme, favicon, logo upload and so on.
The second option down is "Manage Coupon", if you choose to charge people to list articles on your directory you can create a promotional coupon to offer people for money off. I've talked about how effective coupon codes are before so I recommend making use of this.
The next menu option is "Payment Options", this is where you configure the payment processors if you are charging for listings. There are 7 different options you can choose from:
- Google Checkout
- 2CO (2Checkout)
- Pre Bank Transfer
- Pay Cash On Delivery
You can disable the ones you dont need by clicking "Deactivate" next to them, for the ones you do want to use, click "Settings" and enter your details on the next screen.
The next menu option is "Price Package", this is where you can setup different price options such as a plan for free articles and one for submitting featured articles. You can choose the pricing, how many days it is valid for etc
This section is where you control all the emails which are sent by the theme and also the messages displayed on the site itself. Look though all the messages here as you may wish to add your own footer or extra information.
This is a nice feature, it allows you to upload a .CSV file of articles and it will import them into your site.
I found the ArticleDirectory theme from Templatic really easy to install and configure, the theme is nicely designed and coded so it provides a nice 'base' for you to build your article directory. The built-in pricing options and payment processors is a really nice touch, allowing you to monetize your site from the beginning.
I see this best being used not as a general article directory, but as niche directories - people looking for backlinks to their site will find more value in an article directory which is aimed at their specific niche. Templatic provides a developer license for $95 so you can build as many sites using this theme as you like, a good investment I think.