How to Add a Custom Read More Link in WordPress

Today’s post may be short and sweet, but it’s to share a great plugin available for WordPress: Custom More Link Complete. If you are looking for a great solution for a WordPress custom more link, this is the plugin for you (and it’s FREE!).

Even though we don’t use the “More” functionality on this site, another site I’ve been working on does use it and I found the default text super boring. I wanted a quick, easy way to change the text without hard-coding it, as I may want to change it on a whim in the future and don’t want to have to search it out again.

Enter this great plugin! Once you install the plug-in you simply go to your settings and type in the text that you’d like to use, click save and the new text is there.

custom-more-link-text.jpg

In this example, I’m using it to emphasize that in addition to reading the rest of the post, there is also a video that you can see. Even though the text is nice and short, I’m able to convey two big actions available by clicking through.

This plugin isn’t fancy, but it gets the job done in a very intuitive and user-friendly way!

5 Free Retro Script Fonts

retro-script-font-free.png

Retro script fonts are all the rage right now — I’m seeing them used all over the interwebs for a fun and fresh look. A good retro script font is typically easier to read when compared with a traditional script or calligraphy font. This is a big reason for their popularity.

So, how to find a good retro script font? I’ve rounded up five of my favorites here. All free. All easily downloadable. Now, remember what I mentioned earlier in the week – free fonts don’t come with lots of bells and whistles, so if you need a retro script font with lots of glyphs and extras, you will need to go the commercial route.

5 Fantastic and Free Sans-Serif Fonts

free-sans-serif-fonts.jpg

You might call me a bit of a font nerd. I absolutely love discovering new fonts and adding them to my ridiculously large (and growing) collection. My favorite resource for paid fonts is Fonts.com, but when I’m searching for free fonts things get a little trickier. Why? There are so many free fonts out there and they aren’t all as high-quality as you might hope. Typically, however, I can depend on FontSquirrel.com and the League of Movable Type to find freebies that also fit the quality bill. In the image above I’ve rounded up my favorite free sans serif fonts. Below are some more thoughts on why I chose each font.

Free Sans Serif Fonts – Raleway

Raleway is one of my favorites because it simply looks special. A few of the letters — the W, for example — have a bit more character than you typically find with free fonts. It’s fun and modern, yet very professional.

Free Sans Serif Fonts – PT Sans

In my mind, great, sturdy sans serif fonts like PT Sans don’t get all of the credit that they deserve. It’s great to have a library full of display or handwriting fonts, but you also need great go-to body fonts, as well. PT Sans fills this space for me.

Free Sans Serif Fonts – Droid Sans

Similar to PT Sans, Droid Sans is a nice body font. It reads well on-screen and has a nice, clean, breathable quality to it.

Free Sans Serif Fonts – League Gothic

I love League Gothic. It’s a bold, smart and modern font that’s perfect for headlines. It’s best when used in moderation when it can really make a big impact.

Free Sans Serif Fonts – District Pro Thin

Thin fonts can be tricky and sometimes hard to read, but not District Pro Thin. It always looks good, crisp and professional. It looks best (in my opinion) at big/headline sizes.

What you need to know about free fonts: Many times, the best free fonts are only available in one weight, typically regular. This means if you want to use the fonts at other weights (bold, light, etc.) that you may need to purchase the commercial version of the font. A good font is worth paying for, so if you find that you really like and use a font it’s worth forking out the dough.

WordPress Tips: Why I Love Google XML Sitemaps

In Tuesday's Tech Talk I explained how mapping out the content for your site can help you get organized and present your content in the best light possible. Today, I'd like to talk about the more tech side of sitemaps, in terms of how an XML file can actually help your organic search results with Google. Before you get nervous about this mysterious XML file structure let me tell you everything you need to know about creating a sitemap for your WordPress site with Google XML Sitemaps:

Creating a sitemap takes 2 minutes with this plugin.

In fact, if you go with their standard settings you can have a sitemap generated in about 30 seconds. OK, now you can breath a sigh of relief.

Here's why I love this plugin: if gives you enough control over your sitemap that you can really tailor it specifically to your site, but not so much so that you're overwhelmed by all of the options and not sure what will be best for your site.

In my mind, the top three things about Google XML sitemaps are:

  • You can exclude certain pages, categories and tags.
  • You can determine the crawl frequencies by page/post type.
  • You can use comment counts to determine post priority.

Once you generate a sitemap with this plugin, your map will (most likely) live at your URL + sitemap.xml. Then, you simply need to log into Google Webmaster Tools and let Google know where your sitemap is located. Pretty cool right?

Here's something else to know about sitemaps: Google will index/crawl your site with or without them. And, Google will not necessarily listen 100% to what your sitemap asks/tells. What your sitemap is doing is telling Google what you think is most important, what should and should not be indexed and how often you suggest certain parts of your site be crawled.