In the first post of this series, we discussed about the design features of the magazine theme.
In this article, we will discuss about features required in the WordPress magazine theme from functionality point of view. Along with attractive design and legibility, the theme should also contain the features specific to magazine industry.
Print magazines are periodically published in issues. The same concept can be adopted for online magazines. One can provide ways in the theme so that the publisher can publish the content issue wise and on websites so that the user can browse through different issues. We recommend Manage Issue Magazine Plugin for this feature. You can download it from here: http://www.issuemagazineplus.com/downloads/manage-issue-based-magazine-plugin/
Slider on home page to display main content:
All magazines have content, which publishers would like to highlight as the prime content for the magazine. On the home page of the WordPress magazine theme, one can provide a slider or some attractive design elements to highlight the prime content of the magazine.
Magazines, in a nutshell are categorized content. Be it issue based magazines or blog style magazines, publishers tend to group articles in categories (e.g. Health, lifestyle and so on). One can provide easy navigations for browsing categorized content and templates to present articles on category pages.
Reviews and Ratings:
Reviews and ratings are an important part of the magazine websites. Make sure that your WordPress magazine theme provides either inbuilt features for reviews and ratings or you can use the readymade plugin and can style it as per your theme’s layout and color scheme. Also provide widgets and/or short codes to display best reviewed or best rated articles as publishers tend to take advantage of the content most liked by their readers.
The comment section is another important feature of magazine websites. Make sure that the comment section can be enabled for any page of the WordPress theme and style it well so that all the comments are in legible format and also maintain an hierarchical view for comments and comments’ reply.
Magazine websites are full of content and readers search for the content they are interested in. Make search prominent on all the pages of the WordPress magazine theme and design template to deliver searched content in attractive and legible format.
Different Post Layouts:
Magazine publishers like to post articles in different formats. Depending on the type of content; they would like to feature picture, audio, video, presentation or social media posts with articles. Provide support and layouts for all these content types in your WordPress magazine theme. Also make sure they should be able to add these contents with ease.
Advertisements are one of the important sources of revenue for magazine owners. It provides control in a WordPress magazine theme to add advertisements at different spots. Magazine owners should be able to use images, texts and/or code snippet for generating ads. Provide controls to accept all types of content.
Widgets are easy ways to customize and enable/disable different features on the website. There are widgets which are specific to magazine websites and must have features for your WordPress theme. Most common magazine theme widgets are as below:
- Display social profile followers’ counts
- Display items picked by editor
- Display most liked articles
- Display most commented articles
- Display most rated articles
- Display most viewed articles
- Display social media profile feeds
Shortcodes are an easy way to include features in WordPress websites even for non-technical users. It is important to provide short codes for some functionalities which theme users might be interested in adding on their website, that are otherwise provided in the template. For example, if a magazine website owner would like to display the most liked and most rated articles in the content are from the some page and your theme supply shortcodes for such features, then he/she can easily add it from another content area. Even for developers it is easy to create new customized templates using shortcodes.
WordPress is available in many languages. WordPress also rules as the most popular CMS in the countries that don’t speak English natively. It is important to make your WordPress theme translation ready, to get benefit of the global market. Of course as a theme developer your end goal is to get the maximum sale of the theme and why to neglect the market, which uses WordPress in their native language. If possible, it is even better to provide themes in multiple languages.
Child Theme Support:
The child theme provides a way to customize the theme without modifying the parent theme, so that the parent theme can be upgraded in the future. Most theme buyers prefer this option, as they would like to get updates for the theme and at the same time they want to customize it as per their requirement.
There can be many other points related to magazine theme features, which can be included in this article, but these are the most basic and required features in terms of functionality. In the next post we will discuss about security and optimization points for the theme.
Do you have something more to suggest? Don’t forget to post comments in the section below.