How to add CAPTCHA in WordPress to prevent spam

Spam registrations or comments can be a nightmare. However, you can stop them completely using CAPTCHA.

According to Wikipedia, CAPTCHA, or Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart, is a type of challenge-response test used in computing to determine whether or not a user is human.

In this article, we’re going to cover how to add CAPTCHA to your WordPress site using the Google Captcha (reCAPTCHA) plugin.

Install the reCAPTCHA Plugin

To install the Google Captcha (reCAPTCHA) plugin, login to your WordPress Admin Dashboard and navigate to Plugins » Add New.

Use the search form to locate the plugin and click Install Now. Use the following search term: google captcha.

Install the reCAPTCHA Plugin

If you prefer you can download the plugin from the WordPress.org Plugins directory and install it manually by clicking Upload Plugin. Then, click or drag the plugin’s zip file to the Choose File box and hit Install Now.

Activate the Plugin

Once the plugin is installed you need to activate it.

To do this, go to Plugins » Installed Plugins and locate the Google Captcha plugin. Click Activate.

Add reCAPTCHA to WordPress

You can add CAPTCHA to any part of your WordPress site you think might be vulnerable to bots.

For example, as well as the registration or login page, it can also be added to contact and comment forms.

Adding CAPTCHA to these sections of your site couldn’t be easier with the reCAPTCHA plugin.

In your Admin Dashboard navigate to Google Captcha » Settings to configure the plugin.

Configure reCAPTCHA Plugin

Register With Google

In order to get the API keys to authorize reCAPTCHA on your site, you first need to register your website with Google.

Under the Authentication section, click Get the API Keys to be redirected to Google.

Register your website with Google

Sign in to your Google Account. If you don’t have an account, register one.

Once you’re logged in you’ll see a section entitled Register a new site.

Choose the type of reCAPTCHA

Now you need to choose the type of reCAPTCHA you want to use.

The Four Types of reCAPTCHA

  • reCAPTCHA v3 verifies whether or not an interaction is legitimate without any user interaction. It operates on an automatic score-based system.
  • reCAPTCHA v2 brings up the I’m not a robot checkbox when users visit the page. It is also the most simple option.
  • Invisible reCAPTCHA doesn’t need the visitor to click on anything. Only the more suspicious traffic will be given a CAPTCHA to solve.
  • reCAPTCHA Android provides APIs to integrate into your Android app.

Once you’ve decided on the type of CAPTCHA, add the domain(s) you want to add the reCAPTCHA to (your website or blog).

Accept the Terms of Service and then hit Register.

Note: You can also use the Label field if you’re using different reCAPTCHA settings on different pages, but it’s not obligatory.

Add reCAPTCHA to Your Site

Scroll down to the section entitled Adding reCAPTCHA to your site.

This is where your Google-generated API keys are, as well as the instructions on how to apply them to your site.

Google reCAPTCHA Site Key & Secret Key

Copy the Site key and paste it into the Site key box in Google Captcha » Settings of your WordPress Admin Dashboard.

Do the same with the Secret key and hit Save Changes.

Copy and paste the Site Key and Secret Key

Now it’s time to test it out.

Testing reCAPTCHA

As soon as you’ve copied your API keys in WordPress, Test reCAPTCHA will show up underneath them. To test it, just click the button.

Your chosen CAPTCHA type (eg. v2) will show up. Complete the test and a confirmation message will appear once it’s successful: The verification is successfully completed.

reCAPTCHA is now installed on your site.

Now you need to chose where you want reCAPTCHA to appear on your site.

Choose Where You Want CAPTCHA Enabled

In Google Captcha » Settings, under the General section you’ll see Enable reCAPTCHA for and then a list of checkboxes.

This is how you decide where the CAPTCHA forms will appear on your site.

Select where you want reCAPTCHA to appear

Check all the boxes and save your changes.

If you want to add a CAPTCHA to contact forms, you’ll need an external plugin, which is a premium feature. However, it’s quite affordable at $30 /year.

Now that you’ve successfully installed reCAPTCHA on your site, a CAPTCHA field will appear beneath each form and prompt users before completing the form submission.

WordPress reCAPTCHA field in forms

That’s it, now spam bots will be unable to bypass the CAPTCHA field of your site and won’t be able to flood your site with spam.

I hope you’ve found this tutorial useful, if you have any questions or comments please use the form below.

How to make your WordPress site GDPR compliant

In 2018 the General Data Protection Regulation – or GDPR – came into effect. While it’s a European law, the regulations require websites that have visitors from EU states to comply with the law.

The good news it it’s easy to make your site compliant. The dad news is it’s not very clear what you need to do.

So, we’ve written a tutorial to help you make your WordPress site GDPR compliant.

Update to the latest version of WordPress

In each update of WordPress since version 4.9.6, there’s several new pre-packaged privacy settings which will help you make your site GDPR compliant.

To find out which version of WordPress you’re running, log in to your Admin Dashboard.

The WordPress version is displayed in your Admin Dashboard

Scroll to the bottom of the page & on the right-hand side on the screen the version number will be displayed. As of November 2018, the current version of WordPress is 4.9.8, so if you’re running an earlier version, you should update immediately.

Comment Form Cookie Opt-In

WordPress stores cookies by default so users don’t have to re-type all of their details when leaving a comment.

There is usually an opt-in automatically included in the comment form which users can check.

You don’t have to do anything specific for this, although you may want to explore your customization options if you don’t like the way it looks.

Some theme authors use custom comment forms and may not include this opt-in, so you’ll need to add it yourself.

Export and delete personal data

Two options exist which allow you manage personal information.

Manage Personal Data

To find these settings, look in your Admin Dashboard in the left-hand menu. Under Tools, you will find Export personal data, and Erase personal data.

You can quickly and easily export a user’s information or completely erase it from your database at their request.

Privacy Policy

To be GDPR compliant you need to display a Privacy Policy. If you’ve never written a privacy policy before, WordPress has introduced a template to make it simple. When you installed WordPress or updated to the latest version, a page entitled Privacy Policy was automatically generated and is displayed in your Admin Dashboard under the Pages tab.

Navigate to the Settings > Privacy and select that page from the drop-down. If you don’t already have the Privacy Policy page, use the Create New Page button to generate a privacy policy page for your site.

WordPress Privacy Policy

The site generated privacy policy includes specific privacy and disclosure information related to WordPress in general.

It gives you a starting point for your privacy policy, but when it comes to making your website GDPR compliant, you’ll find that it’s not entirely complete.

Depending on the services and plugins you use on your website, you’ll need to ensure that your privacy policy is updated to include cookie and data collected on your site.

Here’s some common areas where cookies can be collected and you’ll need to include disclosure in your policy:

  • Google Analytics and other tracking services
  • Google Adwords, Bing, and other ad networks
  • Cloudflare and CDN services
  • Opt-ins or pop-ups
  • Push notifications
  • Video players
  • Heatmaps
  • Shopping carts

Contact Forms

Include a checkbox that allows users to opt in (or not) on your contact forms (if you have any). The good news is that a lot of the more popular plugins have been updated to make GDPR compliance easier.

Contact Form 7 Plugin: A simple line of code will add a checkbox to your forms.

[acceptance accept-this-1] I understand that by checking this box agrees that this website and company may store any information I provide. [/acceptance]

wpForms Plugin: If you’re looking for an easy way to add GDPR agreement modules, wpForms has a module you can add. In the wpForms settings enable GDPR Enhancements. This will allow you to edit your existing forms to make sure they match up.

Don’t forget that once you’ve added your data agreements to your contact forms, you will need to be sure to include information about the collected data to your privacy policy.

Newsletters

One of the important points of GDPR is that however you collect information; you need to work out a safe way to store it. So just like in your contact forms, you’ll have to ask users to consent to having their data stored. In most cases, this can be easily done by including a checkbox that users can select to opt-in, or by enabling double opt-in.

Once you’ve done this, be sure to update your privacy policy to include disclosure for your newsletter.

WooCommerce Data

If you have an online store, then you’re going to need to collect a lot of customer data, so it’s important you specify what you collect, for how long, and what you do with it.

WooCommerce has built-in privacy features to make this easier for you.

Start by making sure you have the most recent version of the plugin installed.

Then go to Settings > Accounts & Privacy and make sure you enable the option which allows you to retain personal information, erasure, and privacy policy links.

Then it’s time to update your privacy policy again! Essentially, GDPR is about filling in the gaps between people providing information and knowing what happens to it afterwards. Every change you make in how you collect data is going to need an updated privacy policy, and it pays to keep this up to date.

Add a Cookie Notice

If you’re using cookies, you need to let users know that you’re using them – and not just in your privacy policy. This is why you’ll have noticed an increase in the number of cookie notices on websites. GDPR specifies that the first page a user visits needs to have a cookie disclosure.

Obviously, this means that you do too!

Many popular themes have now updated themselves to make this an easy option to enable on your first page. However, if yours doesn’t, there are plugins which can help to make you compliant.

A search for GDPR cookie compliance plugins in WordPress will display a host of useful plugins, ranging from free use to paid options.

Make it Easy for Users to Request/Delete Their Info

WordPress has streamlined a lot of the process of data collection and storing, so that you can find what you need in one place. However, it is up to you to make sure that you provide the necessary information for a user to contact you should they want their data delated.

How you do that is going to depend on how many users you have on your site. If you’re dealing with a large number of clients, it may well be worth installing a contact form which specifically deals with data deletion requests. Then include a direct link from your privacy policy to the form.

However, if you’re running a simple blog or business website which doesn’t have a huge amount of people’s data, then you should be fine just including the necessary email address for deletion requests in your privacy policy.

Notify Users of Policy Updates or Data Breaches

Now if you’ve completed all the previous steps, your WordPress site should be GDPR compliant. But there’s one more area you need to look into – and that’s what happens when you change your privacy policy, or there is any kind of data breach.

It helps to get in the habit of notifying users when you make changes to your privacy policy so that they know how their data is being used. Many of the more advanced WordPress plugins will have a notification option, so the minute you update a section of your GDPR, you can send out an automatic notification.

You also need to have an email ready should you ever have a data breach. People are particularly data sensitive today, and it’s important you let them know when there’s a risk their data may have been compromised. There’s many templates you can find online for this.

Be aware that the information contained in this article was compiled from people who regularly build WordPress sites. If you’re uncertain about the GDPR regulations, it could be worthwhile to contact a lawyer, just to ensure that you’re getting the best information.

8 Free Real Estate WordPress Themes

In this weeks theme collection we’re looking at the real estate industry. Whether you’re a developer, agent, management company or investor, these beautiful themes can help you create an elegant and beautiful WordPress site for your business.

WP Real Estate

WP Real Estate is a Very Simple, Stylish and Fast Loading WordPress theme Designed for Real estate firms and agents. Although Designed keeping properties in mind, this theme is so flexible it can be used by Lawyers, Doctors, Artists and More!

Builderio

Builderio is a Clean and Simple WordPress Construction Theme built based on Bootstrap 4 framework. Construction zone fully customizable built on wordpress customizer that enable you to configure your website in live preview. This is our most flexible WordPress theme and it is completely free to use for private and commercial websites. It’s 100% responsive and device friendly. This theme is also SEO friendly which will help you you attain the highest rankings on Google and other search engines.

Hotel Center Lite

Hotel Center Lite is a simple, clean, easy to setup and user friendly free hotel booking WordPress theme. This theme is developed to create websites for hotel, restaurants, guest house, resort, cafe, lodge, food joint, spa, vacation, accommodation, holiday homes, bed and breakfast, rental services and all hotel related businesses. It can also be used for corporate, portfolio, creative agencies, tours & travel agencies, personal blog, photography, cuisines, recipes, bakery items and any other business websites. Hotel Center Lite theme is perfect for to create a professional and beautiful website for hotel business. This theme is responsive and looks great on any type of devices including smartphone, tablet, laptop and desktop PC. It is optimized for SEO to rank your website higher in search engine. Also, Hotel Center Lite is cross-browser compatible and supports popular browser like Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Safari and IE.

Real Estater

Real Estater is a fresh and clean, modern and functional, versatile and sophisticated, readily responsive WordPress real estate theme.Real Estater supports static front page with dynamic sections like slider section, featured header image, about us section, team section, testimonials etc.

Robolist Lite

Robolist Lite is modern, feature rich and free WordPress theme for listing and directory sites. It is integrated with the well built WP Job Manager Plugin, which enables you to add a list of any professions. Such as business agencies, corporate sites, hotels, real estate and so on. The core objective of this theme is to give the information to the visitors as much as it can. Robolist Lite is loaded with the all the necessary extension which means tons of possibilities. The complete out of the box BootStrap Framework has made Robolist Lite fully responsive theme. Its clean and pixel perfect design is powerful enough to grab the attention of the visitors. Launch your directory website with this awesome WordPress listing theme, Robolist Lite.

Realestate Base

Realestate Base is a clean and beautiful real estate WordPress theme. It is a flexible theme suitable for real estate agency, agents, builders, interior designers, architects, brokers and also useful for blog, business, corporate or portfolios website. It comes with powerful theme options and custom widgets which make customization easy and intuitive. In a matter of minutes, it helps your to set you up with sophisticated custom websites. Regardless of your previous development or coding experience, it delivers sharp, polished results. As this theme is responsive, it looks great on all size devices ranging from small phones to large monitors.

Real Estate Lite

A complete WordPress Real Estate Solution for real estate agents and real estate brokers. Real Estate WordPress theme can also be used for building WordPress sites for small businesses like accountants, consultants and others. It supports the following front page sections: Featured header image with intro and additional buttons, services section, about us, blog and a contact section. This WordPress real estate theme comes complete with customisation options that include, custom logo, custom header, colors, typography, front page sections (header,about us, services, contact us, blog). The PRO addon plugin adds the full real estate solution with actual properties and agents, property slider, property feature/amenities.

real estate agent

A modern WordPress Real Estate Solution for real estate agents and brokers. Real Estate Agent supports static front page with dynamic sections like featured header image, about us section, testimonials and teams (pro features), blog and a contact section. Real Estate Agent theme comes complete with customisation options that include,custom logo, custom header, colors, typography, front page sections (header,about us, services, contact us, blog).

How to fix WordPress admin login error

Can’t log into your WordPress Admin Dashboard? Don’t worry, it’s a common error and there’s more than one solution. In this tutorial, we’re going to cover a few ways of solving this problem.

Reset admin user password

If you can’t log into your Admin Dashboard it could be that you have the incorrect password. But, there’s a quick solution; you can always reset it.

Here’s 3 few ways to reset your admin password.

Resetting admin password with email access

First you want to navigate to your WordPress Admin Login page.

This will be located at the following URL,

 http://www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin/

Click on Lost your password? underneath the Username and Password fields.

When prompted, enter the username or email address of the admin account and click Get New Password.

Click on Lost your password? link

Enter your admin username or email address

A temporary password will be emailed to you. You can always choose to change it once you’ve successfully logged back into your site.

Resetting admin password in the WordPress database

If you no longer have access to your email, you can reset your password by editing the WordPress database using phpMyAdmin.

phpMyAdmin is an open source MYSQL database administration tool which is quite popular and is usually included with most web hosting accounts.

Start by logging into your hosting account / cPanel account.

Under the DATABASES section you’ll see a link for phpMyAdmin. Click on it.

phpMyAdmin located in cPanel hosting account

When phpMyAdmin opens, you’ll see a list of database names. Locate the one for your website and click on it.

If you’re unsure of the name of your database, look inside the wp-config.php file located in the root directory of your WordPress site.

Look for the following code:

/** The name of the database for WordPress */
define('DB_NAME', 'your_db_name');

In phpMyAdmin, when you select your database name, a list of table rows will be displayed.

Locate the wp_users table row.

wp_users table row in phpMyAdmin

Click on wp_users.

The wp_users table will list all the user accounts on your site and their passwords. However, it’s the admin user that you’re interested in.

Click Edit next to the administrator username.

From the Functions dropdown, select MD5. In the value field, enter your new password.

Change admin user password in wp_users table

Then, save your changes and try to log into your Admin Dashboard with the new password.

Note: Using phpMyAdmin to edit your database may break your website. Make sure to download a backup of your database before you make changes.

Reseting admin password by editing functions.php file

If the previous two solutions didn’t work to reset your password you can always resort to editing the functions.php file.

The file is located in your themes directory and not in the WordPress root directory.

The path to your themes directory looks like this,

/public_html/wp-content/themes/twentyseventeen

Connect to your site via FTP or access the File Manager from within your hosting account and navigate to the functions.php file for your active theme. For example:

public_html/wp-content/themes/twentyseventeen/functions.php

Edit the file and add this code to it, right at the beginning, after the first <?php:

wp_set_password( 'password', 'admin' );

Put in your own new password for the main admin user. The “admin” is the administrator user ID in the wp_users table.

Note: In this instance, our username is ‘admin’ and our chosen password is ‘password’.

Then, save your changes and try to log into your Admin Dashboard.

If you can, visit My Profile to set a new password and save your changes.

The final step of this solution is important.

Once you’ve changed your password, you need to re-open functions.php and delete the code you just added.

If you don’t, WordPress will continue to reset your password.

Enable cookies and clear cache

Although you can disable cookies in your browser (Chrome, Firefox, Safari & Edge), I don’t recommend it when working with WordPress.

WordPress requires cookies to function properly, and some errors can be cookie-related.

Check to ensure that your cookies are enabled in your browser. If they aren’t, enable them.

After enabling the cookies, you should then clear your cookies and cache.

You can also do this in Windows by hitting the ctrl+shift+del keys and on Mac with cmd+shift+del keys.

Once your cache has cleared, reload your page and try to log in again.

If it’s still not fixed, it could instead be a plugin issue.

Disable plugins

If none of the above steps have worked, it’s likely that you’re dealing with a faulty plugin. This is a common cause of many WordPress errors.

That said, there’s no way to tell which plugin is causing the problem.

So, you must deactivate all of them at once, then re-enable them one by one.

You can do this via FTP or with the File Manager within your hosting account.

Locate the plugins directory within your WordPress installation. The path is:

public_html/wp-content/plugins

To disable all your plugins at once, simply rename the folder to plugins_backup.

Now, try to log in to your site again.

If you’re able to log in then you know one of the plugins is the cause of the problem. However, you don’t know which one.

This is why you now need to change the plugins folder back to it’s original name and deactivate the plugins one-by-one by renaming them.

Once you’re able to log in again you will have found the problematic plugin.

Deactivate your currently active theme

Like plugins, themes can also cause their share of problems.

To see if your active theme is the cause of the problem, you can switch to another theme.

Follow the same steps you completed to disable the plugins but instead navigate to the themes directory.

public_html/wp-content/themes/

In that directory you’ll see a list of theme names.

Rename your current active theme folder and try to login again.

If deactivating your theme didn’t work either, let’s move on to the next fix.

Disable .htaccess file and create a new one

If you’re logging in and being redirected to a 404 error page, you can fix this a couple of ways. Disabling .htaccess is one of them.

To do this, go to your WordPress root directory and locate the .htaccess file.

WordPress htaccess file location

Re-name the file to .htaccess.old and try to log in.

If you’re able to log in, all you need to do now is to generate a new .htaccess file.

You can do this in your Admin Dashboard by going to Settings > Permalinks and clicking SAVE. Doing this will regenerate the .htaccess file.

Update your site URL

If creating a new .htaccess file didn’t work, you can try to update the URL of your site via FTP or with the File Manager within your hosting account.

To update your site URL, you have to edit the wp_config.php file. This file is also located in your WordPress root directory.

Edit the file and add the following code:

define('WP_HOME','http://www.yourdomain.com');

define('WP_SITEURL','http://www.yourdomain.com');

This will refresh the URL where your WordPress files are located and also the URL to your homepage.

If you’ve tried all of the above issues and still can’t log in, I suggest contacting your hosting provider for assistance.

Feel free to let us know in the comments below if any of these solutions worked for you.

How to set up error logs in WordPress to diagnose issues

How to set up error logs in WordPress to diagnose issues

Error logs can help you to diagnose issues affecting your site. This is achieved by configuring the wp-config file of your WordPress site.

The wp-config.php file is a WordPress configuration file that contains important settings. These settings tell your website how to connect to your WordPress database, which database table prefix to use, and generates authentication keys to make your WordPress site more secure.

But, it also works as a handy debugging tool, which allows you to find and debug errors.

In this tutorial, I’m going to cover the basics of setting up error logs in WordPress and what they mean.

Why do you need error logs?

Finding the root cause of errors in WordPress can sometimes be frustrating and time consuming.

Setting up error logs will help you find those issues quickly, and point you to the root cause of the errors.

Whether you fix the errors yourself or ask a professional, the error logs are an important piece of the puzzle.

Error logs are also useful in keeping track of bugs that might enter your system through plugin updates or bad code.

How error logs can help us diagnose issues

Depending on the type of error, a simple Google search can help you find a solution.

Each line that’s visible in the error log describes the error and displays the file URL which triggered the error.

However, it also uses PHP terminology. Here is how one line of the error log could look like,

PHP Fatal error: Call to undefined function verb_lite_entry_categories() in /home/ivgserve/public_html/simplex/wp-content/themes/simplex-lite/loop-templates/content-featured.php on line 23

For beginners who aren’t familiar with PHP code, this can be daunting. Don’t worry, further on in this tutorial I’ll explain how to use error logs to debug issues.

How to setup error logs in wp-config

Until you’ve enabled debug mode, WordPress won’t create or store your error logs. So, you have to enable the built-in debugging feature yourself.

Here’s how you do it.

Enabling the WordPress debug mode

To enable the debug mode, you need to edit the wp-config.php file.

Start by either logging into your hosting provider’s cPanel or access the site via FTP.

Go to your cPanel File Manager or public_html in your FTP and locate wp-config.php.

Open the file to edit it and find the line that says “That’s all, stop editing! Happy blogging.”

Right before this line, insert the following code.

define( 'WP_DEBUG', true );

define( 'WP_DEBUG_LOG', true );

define( 'WP_DEBUG_DISPLAY', false );

The save your changes.

The WP_DEBUG line activates the WordPress debug mode. However, it only displays the errors and doesn’t store them in the log file. You’ll see the errors and warnings in your dashboard and on the front-end of your site.

It’s possible this line of code is already present in your wp-config file and will be set to false. In that case, simply change it to true.

The WP_DEBUG_LOG line is what stores the errors in the log.

Finally, the WP_DEBUG_DISPLAY line should be used in conjunction with the other definitions.  This one controls whether or not the debug messages are inside the pages’ HTML or not.

Note: If any of the above lines of code are already in the wp-config file, replace them with the code mentioned previously.

Once you reload your site, it will generate an error_log file which will be located in your WordPress root directory.

Error_Log file located in WordPress root directory

Reviewing the error logs

In order for you to be able to review the logs, you’ll need to trigger them so the system can log them in the error_logs file. You can do this by visiting the pages which where triggering errors. Each page you visit will trigger the errors and the system to record them in the error_logs file.

Then, open the error_logs file and review the logs. It will look something like this,

[21-Oct-2016 16:49:38 UTC] PHP Fatal error: Call to undefined function verb_lite_entry_categories() in /home/ivgserve/public_html/simplex/wp-content/themes/simplex-lite/loop-templates/content-featured.php on line 23
[21-Oct-2016 16:50:51 UTC] PHP Fatal error: Call to undefined function verb_lite_entry_categories() in /home/ivgserve/public_html/simplex/wp-content/themes/simplex-lite/loop-templates/content-featured.php on line 21
[21-Oct-2016 16:54:41 UTC] PHP Fatal error: Call to undefined function verb_lite_entry_categories() in /home/ivgserve/public_html/simplex/wp-content/themes/simplex-lite/loop-templates/content-featured.php on line 22

Error logs usually have the following structure,

  • Date
  • Error type
  • Error description
  • File path & line number

This will point you to the files and specific lines of code which are triggering errors.

You can then go line-by-line and find solutions to each error.

This tutorial doesn’t cover how to solve individual WordPress errors, just how to set up the error logs.

But there is a quick & simple way to find solutions for errors.

Use Google to find solutions

Copy and paste each line of the error log into Google but remove any code specific to your site.

Take this line for example,

[21-Oct-2016 16:49:38 UTC] PHP Fatal error: Call to undefined function verb_lite_entry_categories() in /home/ivgserve/public_html/simplex/wp-content/themes/simplex-lite/loop-templates/content-featured.php on line 23

Remove the date and URL specific to your site but include the file name.

PHP Fatal error: Call to undefined function verb_lite_entry_categories() content-featured.php on line 23

Then enter this in a Google search.

You’ll most likely find results for WordPress Support forums or Stack Overflow from users who’ve had similar issues.

If you search through the results, or directly in the WordPress & Stack Overflow forums, you’ll most likely find a solution.

I hope you found this useful, if you have any comments or questions, use the comment form below.

 

10 Free Education WordPress Themes

Last year we wrote a similar post but we thought we’d do one for 2018 as it was a popular topic for many of our readers. We’ve rounded up 10 visually appealing themes released in 2018 we think you’ll like. They that can be used to build websites for educators, teachers, high schools, colleges, campuses, universities, coaching centers & e-learning portals.

Creativ Education

Creativ Education is perfect to create an education website for any learning business related to education, teaching and learning. This theme comes with a creative design layout which is suitable for education sites, university, school, primary school, business and similar websites.

Education Booster

Education Booster is a powerful WordPress theme that specializes in education. Education Booster is a robust and reliable, colorful and youthful, clean and pristine, easy to use and readily responsive WordPress creative website theme for professionals, colleges, schools, universities or private educational institutions. Education Booster has a streamlined, practical design that is sure to attract many readers.

Education LMS

Education LMS is a simple, clean, responsive and user-friendly education WordPress theme specially designed for university, school, college or other educational institutions. The Education LMS theme has powerful theme customization options such as custom header media, logo, custom menu, social icons, featured slider, courses, title bar, news, and more. It makes your website more engaging and informative. Especially, the Education LMS theme works excellent with Elementor and LearnPress plugins, help you easily create flexible content and sell the course online.

Education Master

Education Master, an Education theme by ThemeEgg, is a responsive WordPress theme for university, school, college or other educational institutions. Along with educational institutions, Education Master is flexible and loaded with several features to also cater to the needs of design agencies, corporate websites and small businesses.

Kids Education

Kids Education is an educational theme developed by Theme Palace. Kids Education is a multipurpose WordPress Educational Theme suitable for Kindergartens, daycare, Primary Schools, Secondary Schools and High Schools. Kids Education Theme is also suitable for any educational activities and, with the colorful design, it is ideal for toys stores, activities related to children too. Kids Education can be adapted to any kind of industry – not only educational but also babysitting and summer camps. All pages are optimized in order to perform, in a simple and fast way. It comes with a wide variety of options so you can modify Styling, Featured Slider, Menus, Breadcrumb, Widgets and much more, directly from theme customizer. This theme is Woocommerce compatible and translation ready.

Creativ Kids Education

Creativ Kids Education is a colorful and cheerful WordPress theme created for the kindergarten, daycare, preschool, arts & crafts classes, college, university & all educational institutions. This theme includes a fascinating homepage, vibrant colors, attractive icons and much more.

Uni Education

Uni Education is a elegantly crafted educational theme. It is blazingly fast, extremely light-weight, search engine friendly and very easy to use. Uni Education theme is suitable for college, School, university, LMS, Training Center, Academy, Primary School, High School and Kindergarten and various educational websites. Uni Education theme has wide list of customizable features including front page customizable sections with customizer api and widgets, wide and boxed layout and many more options. It comes with cross-browser compatibility, mobile friendly design and responsive features.

Higher Education

Higher Education is a simple, clean and user-friendly Education WordPress theme especially designed for Schools, Universities and Academic Institutions. The responsive layout and beautiful design make your website look welcoming. The theme provides your visitors an easy access to any area they like. The Higher Education WordPress theme has powerful theme customization options as well. It has a large roster of versatile features such as custom header media, logo, custom menu, social icons, featured slider, hero content, featured slider, promotion headline, portfolio, logo slider, courses, professors, testimonials, events, news, and more. With an array of crucial features filled in it, Higher Education is perfect for schools, universities, language classes, professional courses, and all the academic institutions. Make your website more engaging and informative with Higher Education. The theme gives the perfect niche that is dynamic, multi-functional and upfront. This theme is translation ready.

Campus Education

Campus Education is a visually appealing, engaging and informative education WordPress theme for high schools, colleges, campuses, universities, coaching centres, e-learning portals, teaching academies, secondary schools and other LMS. With profound customization, you can change the look of the site to make it the best fit for kindergartens, preschools, day care centres and primary schools. The theme is responsive, translation ready and cross-browser compatible. Banners and sliders can be used to make it more impacting. This education WordPress theme has proper placement of call to action buttons to invoke visitors to take actions in your favour. Social media icons can help you link to maximum people in just a few clicks. Standard design pattern is followed to make it SEO ready. Built on Bootstrap framework, it encourages easy usage of the theme. Customization is its powerful tool that can change the look and feel of the website.

Free Education

Free Education is a simple, clean, responsive and user-friendly education WordPress theme specially designed for university, school, college or other educational institutions. The Free Education theme has powerful theme customization options such as custom header settings, logo, custom menu, social icons, featured slider, courses and more. It makes your website more engaging and informative. Especially, the Free Education theme works excellent with Free Education Helper and learpress plugins, help you easily create flexible content and sell the course online.

How to add Youtube videos in WordPress

There are 4 ways to add/embed Youtube videos in your WordPress posts, pages and sidebars. They are,

  • Using oEmbed
  • Using the embed shortcode
  • Using an <iframe>
  • Using a widget (in your sidebar)

I’ll walk you through each of the steps and explain them in detail.

Using oEmbed

This is the quickest and easiest method. You simply need to copy and past the Youtube video URL into WordPress.

You can find the URL by clicking on the Share button in Youtube, it appears beneath the video and to the right of the title, just above the Subscribe button.

Youtube Share Button

Then click on Copy in the popup.

Copy Youtube video URL

This will copy the video’s URL to your clipboard. Next, you will return to your WordPress dashboard and paste that link into your post or page. On it’s own line, like this.

Past the video URL into WordPress

It’s important that you past the link when in the Visual tab of the editor and on it’s own separate line, otherwise it won’t work.

Within a few seconds the video will appear in your editor.

Youtube video appears in your post or page

This works because of a technology called oEmbed. There are other types of content you can insert into WordPress just by pasting the URL in your post screen.

With the release of WordPress 4.4, you can now embed content from anyone who supports the official oEmbed protocol. Here is a list of sites that you can embed content from.

Service Content Type
Amazon Kindle Instant Previews
Animoto videos
Cloudup videos, galleries, images
CollegeHumor videos
Dailymotion videos
Facebook post, activity, photo, video, media, question, note
Flickr videos, images
Funny Or Die videos
Hulu videos
Imgur images
Instagram images
Issuu documents
Kickstarter projects
Meetup various types
Mixcloud music
Photobucket images
PollDaddy polls, surveys
Reddit posts, comments
ReverbNation music
Screencast.com videos
Scribd documents
SlideShare presentations
SmugMug various types
Someecards.com ecards
SoundCloud music
Speaker Deck presentations
Spotify music
TED videos
Tumblr various
Twitter tweet, profile, list, collection, like, moment
VideoPress videos
Vimeo videos
WordPress plugins plugins
WordPress.tv videos
YouTube videos, playlists

Using the embed shortcode

When editing a post or page click on the Add Media button to the top, left hand corner of your screen. It will look like this,

Add Media button

To insert your video select the Insert from URL option. Then paste in the Youtube video URL.

Paste the Youtube video URL

Then video will then appear in your post or page, just like the previous method. The advantage of using this method is the customization options it offers. It contains two parameters that allow you to set a maximum width & height on your embed. But you will have to switch over to Text mode in the editor to add these parameters.

For example:

Set width and height in embed shortcode

 

Using an iframe

If you want even more flexibility, then using an iframe is the best option. It requires a few extra steps and involves editing a line of code, but it’s not difficult.

Start by grabbing the iframe code from Youtube. Like in the first method, click on the Share button next to the video and then select the Embed option. You’ll then be presented with a preview of the video along with the iframe code and a couple customization options. Once you’re satisfied, copy the iframe code.

Youtube Video iFrame Code

Go back to your WordPress editing screen, and click on the Text tab and paste the code on it’s own line, where you want the video to appear.

Now you can add the URL parameters to customize your video.

We can make some changes to an embedded Youtube video’s behavior just by attaching parameters to the end of the Youtube URL inside the iframe. The following example causes the video to automatically play when it’s loaded:

We attach autoplay=1 to a question mark following the original Youtube URL in this case. Refer to Google’s Youtube Embedded Players Parameters page for the full list of supported parameters.

Here’s a few of them:

Parameter Description
autoplay Set this parameter to 1 to auto play video. Default is 0, which disables auto playing. Note that auto playing a video is disabled on certain mobile platforms and browser combinations such as Chrome and Safari mobile.
controls Sets whether the video player controls are displayed:

  • controls=0: Player controls do not display in the player. For IFrame embeds, the Flash player loads immediately.
  • controls=1 (default): Player controls display in the player. For IFrame embeds, the controls display immediately and the Flash player also loads immediately.
  • controls=2: Player controls display in the player. For IFrame embeds, the controls display and the Flash player loads after the user initiates the video playback.
start The time in seconds from the beginning of the video to start playing.
end The time in seconds from the beginning of the video to end playing.
loop In the case of a single video player, a setting of 1 causes the player to loop the initial video when playing *.  In the case of a playlist player (or custom player), the player plays the entire playlist and then starts again at the first video.*Note: This parameter has limited support in the AS3 player and in IFrame embeds, which could load either the AS3 or HTML5 player. Currently, the loop parameter only works in the AS3 player when used in conjunction with the playlist parameter. To loop a single video, set the loop parameter value to 1 and set the playlist parameter value to the same video ID already specified in the Player API URL, for example:
playlist A comma-separated list of video IDs to play. If you specify a value, the first video that plays will be the video originally specified in the iframe’s URL, and the videos specified in theplaylist parameter will play after that.

Here’s an example of how that would look:

https://www.youtube.com/embed/SbQc_JLUH7k?autoplay=1&loop=1&start=5&end=8&playlist=96kI8Mp1uOU

If you want to test this out on a video before implementing on your website you can play around with the code here.

Using a widget

To place a Youtube video inside one of your sidebars, the process is slightly different. You will need to utilize the native Video widget provided within WordPress. However, this Widget is only available in WordPress version 4.8 and above. It makes adding a video very easy.

In your Admin Dashboard navigate to Appearance > Widgets and select the sidebar you want to add the video.

Drag and drop the Video widget into the sidebar.

Add Video widget to sidebar

You can then select to upload a video or insert from a URL like in one of the previous methods we discussed.

Upload or insert video into widget

Once you’ve selected your video click on Add to Widget where you’ll be presented with a preview.

Preview video in widget

If you’re satisfied, click Save to publish the widget to your sidebar.

That wraps up this tutorial, if you have any questions or comments, use the form below.

How to find your WordPress admin login URL

If you’re a beginner to WordPress and struggling to find where to log into your Admin Dashboard, don’t worry, we got you covered.

It’s as simple as adding /wp-admin, /admin or /login to the end of your website’s URL.

Here’s an example:

http://www.yourwebsite.com/wp-admin/

These 2 alternatives also work,

http://www.yourwebsite.com/admin/
http://www.yourwebsite.com/login/

However, if for some reason those options don’t work and you’re presented with a 404 error (not found), you can log in using the file path for the login page.

http://www.yourwebsite.com/wp-login.php

Sub-directories

If your website is installed in a sub-directory of your domain you will need add the path to that directory.

For example:

http://www.yourdomain.com/website/wp-admin/

Sub-domains

However, if your site is installed on a sub-domain the procedure is similar but slightly different.

You need to add the sub-domain URL before the domain name and the admin login URL after the domain.

For example:

http://website.yourdomain.com/wp-admin/

Enter your login credentials

Once you’ve accessed the login page you’ll be presented with 2 fields.

Username or email and your password.

WordPress Login Page

Once you’ve successfully logged on, you will be redirected to your Admin Dashboard where you can edit and create posts, pages, widgets and the general administration settings of your website.

It will look something like this.

WordPress Admin Dashboard

Bookmark your admin login page

In order not to forget your login page and to make it easier the next time you log in, you can bookmark the login page with your browser.

Most browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Safari or Edge provide a small star icon at the top right hand corner of your browser window to bookmark websites.

Here is an example for the Chrome browser.

Bookmark WordPress login page

Use the Meta widget

A second but maybe less desirable option is to use the default Meta widget. This widget adds a link to the login page, links to your site’s RSS feeds, and a link to WordPress.org website.

Start by going to Appearance » Widgets and drag the meta widget to your website’s sidebar or widget-ready area.

WordPress Meta Widget

The downside is that it will appear on the front-end of your website and you website visitors will see this widget.

Bypass the login page

If you want to save time you can select Remember Me on the login page so that you’ll be automatically logged in the next time you return.

Select Remember Me to not have to re-enter your password each time

However, this will depend on your cookie settings. If you delete your browser cookies and cache, this will not longer work until you select Remember Me and log in again.

We hope you found this useful, if you have any questions or comments use the form below.

10 Free Foodie & Recipe WordPress Themes

In this weeks theme collection we’re looking at free WordPress themes for foodie & recipe blogs. We searched for themes that have been updated in the past 3 months with an attractive design.

Julia Lite

Julia Lite WordPress theme by pixelgrade

Julia Lite is a food blogging theme made for creators who want to showcase their recipes and culinary stories easily. With a strong focus on shaping a pleasant experience for your readers, this WordPress gem makes room for you to fulfill your passion in a smart and appealing way. It’s time to embrace a more bold approach for your gourmet content in order to keep momentum with your audience.

Fooding

Fooding WordPress theme by FameThemes

Fooding is a good-looking, featured-packed theme that allows you to tell your story in a dynamic, attractive and enjoyable way, making it perfect for food and recipes related websites.

Kale

Kale WordPress theme by lyrathemes

Kale is a charming and elegant, aesthetically minimal and uncluttered food blog theme that can also be used for a variety of purposes. Whether you want to share recipes or fashion tips, run a lifestyle, parenting or cooking blog, Kale is a perfect theme choice. Simple but feature-filled food blog or cooking blog WordPress theme with WooCommerce integration. Beautifully designed and extremely clean, Kale is super easy to set up and is optimized for search engines. Kale comes with a special front page; with featured posts and a large highlight post, the option to show a banner or a posts slider in the header, and RTL support. It also comes with built-in menus for displaying your social media presence, multiple blog feed layouts, text and image logo options, sidebar size options (compact and default), banner/slider color overlay options, multilevel menus, automatically responsive YouTube videos, and much more! Kale is versatile enough to be set up as a small business website as well, by using the a static page as the home page and using the special front page elements to showcase services or portfolio. Kale is backed by world class, one-on-one support, and a super active team of developers and designers ready to help!

Culinary

Culinary WordPress theme by Rescue Themes

Culinary – A Free WordPress Theme for Food and Recipes

MH FoodMagazine

MH FoodMagazine WordPress Theme by MHThemes

MH FoodMagazine comes with nice and fresh colors, especially suitable for yummy food magazines and editorial websites from the health or fitness sector. You can have the same layout in the premium version of MH Magazine (without the need of a child theme) which can be configured by making use of the flexible layout options. MH Magazine offers additional widget areas, multiple unique custom widgets, great features and extended layout options to manage several layout elements on your site including changing the color scheme and typography.

Foodies

Foodies WordPress Theme by IndigoThemes

Foodies is a clean and fully customizable premium WordPress theme for foodies or food bloggers who want to have blogs on food receipes etc.Though, it is not just limited to food bloggers, Foodies can also be used in developing other types of blogs like creative writing, photography, riding and what not ! It is easily customizable through Customizer. Foodies PRO is a Premium Version of the theme which comes with more powerful features and customization options.

Chives

Chives WordPress Theme

Chives is a clean, elegant and responsive WordPress theme dedicated for foodie blogs and portfolio. Chives theme has wide list of customizable features including front page customizable sections with customizer api and widgets, wide and boxed layout and many more options. It comes with cross-browser compatibility, mobile friendly design and responsive features.

FoodyLite

FoodyLite WordPress Theme

FoodyLite is the perfect theme for your food project. Lightweight and highly extendable, it will enable you to create a food blog and a WooCommerce storefront with a beautiful & professional design. Very fast, responsive, RTL & translation ready and best SEO practices. Your site will looks good on every device: mobile, tablet and desktop. The category page is already a recipe index with a custom widgets area for filters. It’s also retina compatible.

Foodie blog

Foodie Blog WordPress Theme

Foodie Blog is a restaurant review / food blog style WordPress theme made for bloggers, newspapers, writers, reviewers and journalists, who has a blog and or websites. It is both elegant and minimalist so your blog posts about food, lifestyle, fashion, movies, travel, clothing, products, reviews or something third is in focus. Foodie Blog in the ways that it is both fast and search engine optimized (SEO friendly) as a theme should be nowadays. The sidebar and header widgets is perfect for adsense affiliate links or whatever else you wish to put there. Installing and setting up the theme is simple for any author, we have tried to optimize the user friendliness by making the interface clean and so it as easy as possible to set up and start using. If the business aspect is important for you, for example if you are using it as a newspaper or personal writing/journalist portfolio then it’s great since your website is able to rank everywhere on the internet with our theme, for example in Yahoo, Bing or Google. Get started with writing about dining, eating, food and restaurant reviews easy!

Blossom Pin

Blossom Pin WordPress Theme

Blossom Pin is a free feminine and chic WordPress blog theme to create stunning, lively and eye-catching websites. Whether you want to share your expert fashion tips, your favorite recipes or create a lifestyle, travel, food, beauty, make-up, coaching, wedding, portfolio, personal, girly, parenting or cooking blog, Blossom Pin is an ideal choice for you. You can easily customize your website using the typography and color features. The beautifully placed Instagram section can be used to show your Instagram account and increase your followers. The well placed Newsletter section will help you to grow your email list and keep in touch with your visitors. Blossom Pin is mobile friendly and fully responsive to ensure your website looks great on different sized devices. Blossom Pin is Schema friendly, SEO friendly, and speed optimized. The theme is translation ready and supports RTL and WooCommerce plugin for your utmost benefit. In addition, Blossom Pin is backed by world-class, one-on-one support, and a super active team of developers and designers ready to help!

How to fix 500 internal server error in WordPress

This error is not specific to WordPress and can happen on any web server. Unfortunately, the error doesn’t specify what the issue could be. In WordPress it is most often caused by plugins or theme functions.

Here are 5 steps to debug this error.

Check the .htacces file

To check to see if the problem is caused by the .htaccess file you need rename it.

The .htaccess file is located in the root directory of your WordPress installation. This is the same directory where the /wp-admin, /wp-includes & /wp-content folders are located.

.htaccess located in WordPress root directory

Connect to your server via FTP or the File Manager link in your hosting account panel.

cPanel File Manager

Next, you want to rename the file to something like .htaccess_backup.

Once you’ve renamed the file, visit your website (or refresh the page) to see if the site is working again.

If it is, great! You’ve fixed the problem. However, you need to do one more thing before you’ve completely solved the issue.

In your Admin Dashboard go to Settings > Permalinks and click the SAVE button without making any changes.

This will re-generate the .htaccess file and ensure your readers don’t encounter 404 pages when visiting your site.

If this doesn’t fix the problem, proceed to the next step.

Increase the PHP memory limit

The error can also be caused by a plugin or theme function exhausting your current PHP memory limit.

If this is the case you can increase the PHP memory limit but you’ll still need to deal with the core problem after you’ve got your site running again.

To increase the PHP memory limit you need to edit the wp-config.php file.

You’ll need to edit the file by connecting to your server via FTP or with the File Manager inside your hosting account panel.

The file is located in the root directory of your WordPress installation.

wp-config.php file located in WordPress root directory

Add the following code to the bottom of the file.

define( 'WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '256M' );

This will tell WordPress to increase the PHP memory limit to 256 MB, which should be more than enough.

Then save your changes and check your site.

If this fixes the problem, great! But you still need to find the root cause of the problem that is exhausting your PHP memory.

As I mentioned before it is most likely a poorly coded plugin or theme function.

I recommend you contact your hosting provider and ask them to check the server logs.

If increasing the memory limit didn’t work, proceed to the next step.

Deactivate all plugins

If the previous 2 steps haven’t worked, the issue could most likely be a plugin, as is often the case.

However, there is no way to tell which plugin it is. So you have to deactivate them all, and then re-activate them all one-by-one to identify the problem plugin.

To disable all your plugins, in your Admin Dashboard, go to Plugins > Installed Plugins and click the checkbox to select all plugins.

Then from the Bulk Options drop-down, select Deactivate and click Apply.

Then check your site. If the problem has disappeared then you know one of the plugins is the culprit.

To identify which one it is, you will need to reactivate them one by one until you discover the problematic plugin.

Once you’ve identified the plugin, report the issue to the plugin author (developer).

Re-install core WordPress files

The 500 internal server error could also be caused by corrupted core WordPress files.

In order to fix that you’ll need to re-install the files.

In the latest version of WordPress, they’ve made this quite easy.

In your Admin Dashboard go to Dashboard > Updates and you’ll see the following.

Re-install WordPress within your dashboard

Click on Re-install Now and let the process run. This will re-write all the core WordPress files instantly.

This process will not overwrite any of your theme, plugin or uploaded files, nor will it affect your database.

If this works then you’ve solved the problem. If not, you’ll need to get help from the experts.

Ask your hosting provider

If all the previous steps have failed to solve the 500 internal server error you should contact your hosting provider.

Ask them to check the server logs and located the root cause of the error.

If this tutorial helped you, please comment below and let us know what you think.

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