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Hotel Booking in WordPress? We’ve covered it!

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We’ve had our eyes on creating this one since a long time. To add to that, we’ve been receiving crazy amounts of theme requests related to the hotel booking concept. So, not to make you wait any further, here it is – Hotel Booking WordPress Theme, an ultimate booking management tool for hotel businesses.

Eye catchy aesthetics, backed by strategically coded design and easily configurable admin panel is what this theme is all about. We wanted to provide the best experience not only to your users, but also to you, as an administrator. Apart from the attractive design as seen in the screenshots, the extensive admin options let you customize and edit any section of your site. Multiple custom widgets are provided to ease your task.

You can show pictures of your hotel properties in a sleek image slider on the homepage. For booking purpose, there is an intuitive booking form which your visitors can use.The booking requests can easily be approved/rejected/managed from the back-end. Your visitors will receive notification emails accordingly.

The dashboard features a handy ‘Upcoming Booking Requests‘ section for a quick glance at the recent booking requests and previous booking logs too. The ‘Booking settings‘ let you specify many options related to the booking process. From number of rooms to currency settings, from tax surcharge to coupon settings, from photo gallery settings to additional services setup, you are in full control of everything.

The ‘Hotel settings‘ let you manage contact and address information while the ‘Email settings‘ is for managing notification emails required to be sent to your customers. The inner pages let you add more content about your hotel business in your preferred layout (full-width or with a sidebar). There is also a blog where you can interact and get personal with your visitors. We have tried our best to incorporate as many tasks related to hotel booking management within this theme. The goal is to simplify the booking process for you and your site visitors.

Hotel Booking theme for WordPress is all you need to run an elegant website for your business with minimal effort. Did we tell you, there’s an auto-install option that automatically adds sample data to get you started?

So, go ahead, see the live demo for free and purchase it here.

Share and Win

Limited time period offer: Retweet the following message or ‘Like’ this theme on Facebook before 20th July and any 3 winners will get a copy of this theme absolutely FREE!

Tweet this: Win a copy of Hotel Booking theme from @templatic //bit.ly/WPBook Retweet to Win.

Or, ‘Like’ this theme on Facebook:

Winners of the content will be announced on this page at the end of the competition.


The time has finally come to announce the winners of our HotelBooking competition! First off we would like to thank all of you who participated and spread the word for this beautiful theme. So, the three winners are:

  • Mauricio Mancias. Mauricio won by retweeting. You can find his Twitter feed @ElPimbo
  • Scott Jarvis. Scott won the theme by liking our post on Facebook.
  • The last winner is William Lang. Just like Mauricio, Will also won by retweeting. You can find his feed @WilliamLang

Again, thanks everyone who participated!

Templatic Power Glyphs
Free Iconset of 200+ Glyphs

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Important post update! All of the icons provided in the blog post have been updated for 2016. Download the new icon set from this blog post.

A couple of weeks ago we released our first freebie set of 50 eCommerce icons which received a good response. So this time we’ve come up with another beautiful iconset of 200+ icons – Power Glyphs iconset. And the best part is, you can download it for free and use them in your personal projects, right away. Wide variety of different icons are packed in this iconset. There are multimedia icons, social-media icons, utility icons, notification icons, etc. We’ve made sure that the icons stand-out and serve the purpose for which they are used. You can use these icons in your personal projects. If you do share them, make sure you include a link to this post. That’s all we ask. So go ahead and grab this wonderful iconset.

Power glyphs

These are 211 icons of 48 x 48 and 74 x 74 size in PNG format. Download them and let us know what you think about it in comments. We hope you like this freebie. Go, grab it.

Share the love

If you like the icons, please give it some social media love also.

Download

Feel free to download the glyphs and use it on your projects.

Download is not available right now
211 icons | 48×48 and 74×74 pixels | .PNG format

License: You must link to this blog post when sharing the Icons, and you must not upload these files anywhere else. This icons set is released under Creative commons 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0) License.

Templatic Ecommerce Glyphs
Free Icon Set of 50 Glyphs

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Important post update! All of the icons provided in the blog post have been updated for 2016. Download the new icon set from this blog post.

Icons, as we already know, are so useful and important in a web project. We’ve released quite a few e-commerce WordPress themes here but for the first time on templatic, we are releasing these beautiful icon set for free. We call these as Glyphs, because they represent things in pictorial form. Sometimes, you don’t need to say anything and things are self explanatory. These icons will let you do this exactly. These icons will really serve a great purpose for those who are just starting out their new Ecommerce projects. We’ve wanted to be pixel perfect, and we really think that we succeeded in this. Every minor details are taken care of, and here’s the result – presenting 50 Glyphs.

These are 50 icons are available in 2 sizes: 48×48 and 74×74 pixels. Take a look at this and let us know what you think about it. Comments are always welcome. Now your icon collection definitely needs something awe-inspiring. Go, grab it !

Share the love

If you like the icons, please give it some social media love also.

Download

Feel free to download the glyphs and use it on your projects.

Download is not available right now
50 icons | 48×48 and 74×74 pixels | .PNG format

License: You must link to this blog post when sharing the Icons, and you must not upload these files anywhere else. This icons set is released under Creative commons 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0) License.

Preview to themes in the pipeline

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All of the themes mentioned in this preview have been released! To learn more about each of them visit our Themes Gallery

You guys loved our earlier posts showcasing theme previews. We received many positive and constructive ideas about what features to include in our upcoming themes. Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to showcase a preview to the themes released in last 3 months because of frenzied development and release schedule. But hey, we are back again with the teasers.

Here are some previews of some of the upcoming themes we are excited about. What’s special about our themes is that they are strategically structured. We try to wire frame and iterate them unless a satisfactory layout is created that includes most of what a particular niche theme requires and works best for the business. Talks apart, here’s the previews…

StoreBox and several other ecommerce themes

This has been long time pending. It’s been real long since we released an ecommerce theme on this site. Well the wait is almost over and you should see few dynamic themes about to be released in this niche very shortly.

Appointment

You asked for it and you are going to get it. Appointment theme for doctors, therapists, consultants, spa or salon owners, astrologers or any service based business who require their customers to set prior appointment. We are sure you will love this strategically beautiful theme. It is structured and planned in such a way it will help you showcase all aspects of your business while also allowing you and your clients to dynamically manage appointments with your business.

Plus One


Named after google’s plus one feature, this unique theme lets you vote on a post you like. Also you can enable your visitors to submit an article and keep track of their favorite posts.

Kind of a mini social media site based on WordPress.

Spa & Salon


A slight variation to the appointment theme, this theme particularly focuses on spa or salon business. It has some similar features of the Appointment theme, plus some specific features.

Hotel Booking

This upcoming elegant theme will focus on hotel business and hotel room booking. This theme is specially crafted for hotel business owners. Make sure you check this one out.

More?

Well this is preview to some of the themes coming up shortly at Templatic. Are you looking for a particular theme that is not available at Templatic store yet? Wish to share some unique theme ideas? Please comment here and let us know how we can improve.

Feedback & Suggestions

We’d love to hear your feedback on upcoming theme previews showcased here. It will help us make some last minute critical changes in the themes if required. Love them? hate them? Just shoot your opinion via comments.

GeoPlaces V2 is here

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Earlier last month, we released an advanced city directory theme GeoPlaces which helps you create a city directory website and it became an instant hit. You guys provided some awesome constructive feedback in the launch post and as promised, we worked on upgrading the theme by improving those tiny details and also adding some new critical features that is a must have for a city directory theme.

We are proud to announce GeoPlaces V2 today. Following screenshot tour quickly explains what has been updated.

Homepage

GeoPlaces V2 Homepage

The homepage now features improved map with post indicators and includes thumb image in the bubble. Featured listings are added in this new version and they will be shown at higher priority throughout the site. Also the theme now includes basic events in this new version.

Submit a business / event

Submit a Business or Event form

(the screenshot above shows all the form fields of adding an event)

The business place / events submission form is now better organized and works just fine for adding either the business listing or an event. It will automatically show/hide relevant fields in the form.

You can now move the cursor on the map for exact place specification and also chose which map view to show by default.

If you are adding an event, add Registration details or if you are adding business listing, add special deals or offer separately and they will be highlighted on the details page.

As admin, you can disable/enable coupons and run occasional promotion and users will get discount while submitting a listing on your site on regular price.

This new version also features optional captcha for spam prevention (can be disabled from the admin panel)

Listing events

GeoPlaces Events List

Events are listed differently. As you can see above, if the event is added as featured, they will be shown first at the top and regular lists will be shown then after. The sidebar features event calendar widget so you can view events by date.

Upcoming and past events are shown separately and can be sorted like shown above.

Event details

Show Event Details

The events are shown in same structure but a bit differently than the business listing. Date, time and address are shown at the top right. How to register for the event is highlighted separately. (Please note, this theme does not handle event registration.)

Updated admin side functions

GeoPlaces Admin Options

Events are shown and managed separately (custom post type) in the admin panel.

In the backend, we’ve added bulk upload now. Simply prepare a .csv file of all your business data based on the sample CSV provided with the theme and import all your data at once. No more manually adding each event on your site.

Managing coupon is yet another thing we added in the theme now so you can run occasional promotion on your website.

View live demo of the GeoPlaces 2. View features and Purchase theme here

If you have already purchased this theme, simply login to member area and download this theme again to get the free upgrade. Installation guide of this theme explains how to upgrade your existing site

Tweet to Win!

Update: The contest is now closed and winners are announced here.

Here’s a promotional offer if you really like this awesome GeoPlaces theme and wish to get it for free. Retweet the following message before 31st of this month and any 3 winners will get developer copy of this theme absolutely free!

Win a copy of the GeoPlaces city directory theme from @templatic //bit.ly/geopl2 Retweet to Win!

Winners of the content will be announced on this post on 1st november. If you are selected as winner and have already purchased this theme, you will receive your money back :)

Hope the community will love this upgrade. We’d really love to know what do you think of this revised theme via comments below.

Geo Places – your city directory built in WordPress

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Thanks to all your feedback, we have released an upgraded version of this theme with so many new updates. Read details here

Geo Places is one of our most advanced themes till date and we are pretty excited on release of this theme. Templatic team has worked on it for about 1+ months. And then we made some important changes and included some must have features that we missed after you guys suggested on initial teaser. That’s why a bit delay in the release of this theme.

Geo Places, as you have guessed it – is a theme built around the idea of showing different places and businesses around a geographic location and providing in depth detail about that. Showing detailed maps, user reviews, business information, services, contact details and so on. Showing nearby places around that particular location is kind of cherry on the cake : ).

This theme does all of that. The special thing about this theme is – it’s built on top of user feedback and actually structured to give you maximum ROI for this kind of websites. That is in fact the difference between us and other premium theme providers. We focus on real world usage more and nifty functionality less.

View live demo of Geo Places theme and Head over to official sales page so you can see all the features in detail and buy this theme. I’ll take a moment and highlight some of the unique, must-see benefits of this theme in here.

Maps

The homepage shows collective map of all the places you have added on this site. Clicking that place icon will take you to the relevant post. Same way, separate maps for each category are also generated.

When you are on a place details page, it shows detailed map. Also you can get directions to reach that place simply by entering the starting point where you currently are.

Design Controls & Flexibility

The homepage is completely widget ready. You can show a full size slider in place of full map if you wish. You can chose to show the list of places either in list view or gallery view from admin panel and the same is true for archive pages that shows the places.

Lots of tiny stuff like “Places Around”

We’ve built many custom widgets specifically for this theme that will make this theme really usable. For example, the page which shows a place in detail also have a sidebar which contains a widget called “In the neighborhood”. Imagine you are searching for a restaurant in a specific area. It automagically shows some nearby places that you have added in the site. This will really help your site visitor i.e. if they are viewing a restaurant, they might want to visit a movie theater or a night club nearby.

Make money

Of course when you build a directory kind of site so might want to make money as well. Apart from many strategic advertise areas, the theme lets you enable/disable “add listing” feature. When enabled, it will let your site visitors add a business place on your site and you can charge them for this. It gives you option of collecting money via six different payment gateways (PayPal, 2Checkout, Google Checkout, WorldPay, Authorize.net and manual payment).

Advanced Search

Apart from blog search, the theme header prominently shows advanced search where you can do “For” and “In” search. For example, “Search for Pasta in This particular area/zip code”.

There are lot’s of features in this theme that you can only “experience”. So take a look at the live demo and explore the theme and grab the theme while it’s hot.

Moving forward

While we think we’ve covered pretty all kind of necessary stuff that the city directory theme should have, we are curious on user feedback and definitely look forward to upgrade this theme with some of the things that we’ve missed in this release. You can count on us on this.

Take a moment and let us know what do you think about this newly released theme via comment below.

Sneak Peek to City Directory theme

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Preview to upcoming City Directory theme of Templatic

The above screenshot of the upcoming theme pretty much sums up everything, but let me explain the features in details. The next theme is built for those who want to create out of the box city websites that have..

  • Auto generated maps of all the places
  • Get directions from the map
  • User submitted places. (You can charge for user submission!)
  • Showcase of different places on your site in an interactive manner
  • Search places
  • Sort different places
  • User reviews of different places
  • User ratings
  • Auto generated image galleries
  • Detailed description of each place with images, address, phone number, map, get directions..
  • Auto generated main Google map, category based map, and other maps that link to posts
  • List and grid views of  city places in categories
  • And much more… (We promise!)

In short, we’ve spent days figuring out all the features and structure an ideal city website should have. Plus enough flexibility in the theme so that as a developer, you can customize it to your liking for some other purpose as well.

I’d rather keep this short unless we release this theme in September. Meanwhile, if you’ve got some nifty ideas on must have features for a city website, do let us know via comments. As we’ve proven earlier, we WILL change the theme to meet exact specifications of actual users.

Beginners Guide to Successful WordPress Powered Store Online

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It’s getting easier and easier to set up online stores. Maybe that’s why more and more people are failing at e-commerce. It’s easy to start, but not easy to sustain or turn a profit. Here’s the beginner guide to setting up an online store with WordPress to start you off on the right foot.

Pick What You’ll Be Selling

Unless you’re planning on competing with Amazon.com selling every product imaginable, which would be a bad idea, get specific. Offline, people go to malls for the convenience of having multiple shops within walking distance so they don’t have to drive around looking for stuff. Online, the convenience is search. People search for what they’re looking for.

For example, Snowboarders aren’t looking for green tea products when they’re shopping for snowboards. So unless you know for sure that people who snowboards are secretly green-tea addicts, don’t try to sell snowboards and green tea on the same website. Getting specific means increasing your chances of showing up for the first few search results on Google or Yahoo. And, being first counts for lots of sales.

Getting specific also weeds out unnecessary competition, which improves your store’s image and product line. Unnecessary competition is having to waste effort on competing with other green tea shops when 98% of your revenue are from snowboards, not green tea.

And how does weeding out unnecessary competition improves your image and product line? Relevance and quality. It allows you to focus on what’s important for the right buyer. For another offline example, anyone who doesn’t care about what they put on their feet can go to Walmart for shoes, for the rest that prefer to pay a little more for better looking shoes, they go to the mall and head for the nearest store with shoes as its main focus. For teens, that would be Foot Locker or Foot Action, where they can get their latest Michael Jordan shoes.

Get Domain Name

Hopefully, now you know what you’re going to sell. Before you can set up a website, you’ll need a domain name, which will cost you around $10. For that, go to Godaddy.com and register/buy one. Buying a domain name is a simple process. If you get stuck, Godaddy has a 24/7 help line.

On the other hand, picking a domain name is tough because there are many choices and many mistakes you can make. Here’s a quick guide for picking domain names:

(Let’s pretend you’re going to sell snowboards.)

  • Use snowboards, snowboard, snow or something relevant/obvious within the domain name. For common names like snowboardstore.com, it’s more than likely you won’t be able to register it because it’s already taken. In fact, that’s the case for many common names. It’ll take you a while to find a good domain name that isn’t taken, but keep at it. One exception to this tip is if you already have a catchy name available for purchase and a big budget to promote the online store, then sure… register anything you want.
  • Don’t use cute misspellings like “snowbor”.
  • Buy a .com name. Don’t settle for a .net, .org, or whatever else is available. Imagine buying fun.net, spending all your time promoting it, then ends up losing some people who wanted to go to your website, but ended up at fun.com. The .com suffix is most common so buy a .com. Otherwise, you might end up really successful with a .net, but still have to pony up a ransom for the .com version because the owner of the .com name sees how successful you’ve been with business under the .net name and because he knows you want the .com. Save yourself the trouble in the first place.
  • No dashes. snowboard-store.com? Forget it.
  • Last but not least, double check to see that your available domain name isn’t misspelled before you register it.

Sign Up for Hosting

There are endless tips on hosting. Below will focus simply on what you need for now.

  • Do not buy the domain name through your chosen web host. It almost always end up messy.
  • Don’t pick one web host over another simply because they offer a free domain name for the first year. You shouldn’t get a domain name through a web host anyway, even if it’s free for the first year or the entire lifetime.
  • Don’t pay annually or bi-annually for web hosting because of the discount offers for those payment plans. Pick a reliable host and pay monthly.
  • You don’t need a dedicated server or UNLIMITED resources. What your online store needs are basic features for it to function and offer up products until it’s profitable, which then would allow you to spend more on web hosting.
  • Basically, look for 1 GB of space, 5 GB of bandwidth, multiple email accounts capability, multiple MySQL database capability, and CPanel (your web hosting control panel). In reality, most websites don’t cross the 0.5 GB of space and 1 GB bandwidth mark.
  • Avoid Windows Hosting Packages, which are more difficult for beginners. Linux or Unix hosting plans might sound strange to you, but go with them instead of Windows Hosting.

From personal experience, I’d recommend HostGator.com. They’re cheap and reliable, really all you need for a new online store that’s going to do moderate numbers. Search Google or Yahoo for Host Gator Coupons and all you’ll pay for the first month is $0.01.

Install WordPress

With CPanel (your web hosting control panel), installing WordPress is easy. You can do it through programs available via CPanel. For example, programs like Fantastico and Simple Scripts. Here are several tutorials on how to install WordPress:

  • One-Click Self-Installation – This is a video example of installing WordPress through the Simple Scripts program in CPanel. Note: Host Gator doesn’t offer Simple Scripts by default, but it does have Fantastico, which is another program that can install WordPress for you.
  • Installing WordPress by WordPress.org’s Codex – This is the installation instructions on the WordPress.org website. If you’re going this route, download WordPress first. And if you need it, here’s a tutorial on how to use FTP to upload files to your web host’s server.

Install An E-Commerce WordPress Theme

Templatic.com has six for you to choose from. Emporium, e-Commerce, WP-Store, Kidz Store, eShop, Store. Templatic also makes theme installation easy with its One Click Intall feature:

You won’t have to set each and everything step by step (like you do with competetor theme). Simply activate the theme and this theme auto populates sample products, categories and does the basic settings (you can remove them with single click). It’s much easier now to understand how the theme works and all you need to do is, edit the sample products and place your own. You do not need technical knowledge.

Upload Products and Details

Shopping online and offline are certainly two different experiences. Obviously, offline, you get to see and feel the real thing. With online, you’ll need to get the customer as close to the product as possible, which means:

  • showing multiple shots of the product from different angles or zoom-in capability
  • providing product specs if technical information will affect customer’s decision
  • including actual feedback and/or reviews and ratings if your product requires a little help from testimonials

Promoting Your Store by Adding a Blog

While a big budget opens up many more possibilities or ways to experiment with bringing people to your online store, it doesn’t take a big budget to profit. You’re really limited by your creativity. For this tutorial, I’m going to borrow some concepts from blogging and assume you have little to zero budget for promotion.

First of all, getting specific with what you’ll sell is already like picking a niche for a blog. With niche-blogging, you pick a small to moderate size topic/niche and you stick to it so when someone searches for say… digital photography, you’d show up as one of the first few results for digital photography on Google or Yahoo.

If your blog fall off track because your writing interest changed to digital painting then your chance of ranking highly on search results for digital photography will be less than that of a competitor’s blog that is completely dedicated to digital photography.

There’s no rule barring you from adding a blog to your online store. Actually, you SHOULD add a blog to your store. It’s a way to chat with customers, promote, and get feedback. Gary Vaynerchuk’s winelibrary.com brings in 8 figures per year and that’s largely due to his video blog series at tv.winelibrary.com.

Once you’ve added a blog to your store, it might look lonely and dead with few posts here and there about what’s going on with the store because that’s probably what you’ll write about in the beginning during your adjustment phase. But soon, you’ll realize your blog is a pretty persuasive communication channel. Customers get to see and hear from you. They’d come back just for the blog even if they aren’t looking to buy new products, if you have good content and are passionate about the topic.

From the blog following you’ve developed, you can start a newsletter for blog readers who want more content or special content and announcements from you. With the newsletter, now you have permission to actually tell customers about new products that are coming. For regular blogging, keeping the reader’s trust while trying to plug your products for sales is a delicate balance. With the newsletter, even if you don’t have enough content for a high quality blog post, you can simply send out a newsletter with a few tips and a plug for a new product. But of course, the blog and newsletter will only work if it doesn’t seem like all you’re doing is pushing your readers to buy more stuff from you.

(Manage newsletters using Aweber.)

Besides newsletters, you can look into linkbaits and leveraging social media. A linkbait is simply an article or blog posting that other blogs of the same topic wants to link to. For example, you’ve managed to interview the top 10 snowboarders in the world through email for sharing on the blog, which is attached to your snowboard online store. The more blogs link to your interview article, the more people come to your blog to read it. The people who came to your blog for the original interview that keep coming back for more from you will eventually buy from your store because they are familiar with you.

For those with a little money spend, depending on the topic of your store and blog, you can create blog posts tailored specifically for social media sites like StumbleUpon, Digg, or Facebook. Take StumbleUpon for example, it’s advertisement program allows you to test advertisement campaigns for as little as $5.

You simply create a linkbait tailored for StumbleUpon audience, usually blog posts with more visuals because Stumble Upon users are impatient people that like to look at cool and pretty stuff. Sign up with Stumble Upon to advertise that linkbait. Configure your settings for when your campaign will start and who should see it.

Who should see it is important, you want potential buyers, not random nobodies whose going to waste your money advertising to them and not buy anything. Most people fail with StumbleUpon campaigns because they forget to select who to advertise to.

Important, with StumbleUpon, you’re advertising blog content you’ve created, not products or services from your store. To people viewing your advertised page, it’s like any other page, but you’re actually advertising a linkbait by paying StumbleUpon to to show your page to its users. While StumbleUpon users aren’t there to buy from you, they will come back to your site if you have great content, which eventually leads to purchasing a product from the store.

More Free Ways to Promote Your Online Store

  • Guest blog on someone else’s site and link back to your store.
  • Go on relevant forums or message boards. Post information people are looking for and link back to the store in your profile’s forum signature area.
  • Write for content hubs like ezinearticles.com and squidoo.com and link back.

Tracking Results and Adjusting

Constantly promoting the blog and store aren’t enough. You need to track everything you can track, see what you’ve come up with, and make necessary adjustments. That means using tools like Google Analytics and CrazyEgg. For testing what version of which pages will perform better, use Google Website Optimizer.

For an example of tracking and adjusting, you can look at the statistics to determine which product page on your site people are coming to from Google and what search term they’re using to get from Google to your top ranking product page. If they’re looking for chinese chairs and your product page is selling a Japanese-inspired chair, you have a problem and that is a whole bunch of people are coming to your product page, but not even one chair is sold.

For another example, you need to track what people are searching for within your store by using Search Meter. That way, you’d know what product you’re missing or what should be the new product in the coming days or weeks.

E-Commerce Resource Links

The quest now begins. Announcing Templatic

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The premium themes market seems promising and there are new paid themes popping up every day. However, not every paid theme is of premium quality and many of them are not even worth paying. While there are numerous themes that are of good quality – available for free download, there are not many paid themes on offer that are meant for just blog. If corporate people or Individual professional wants to have a super high design, they have to pay for a custom design which may or may not match their exact needs.

Dear reader, I am happy to announce //templatic.com/ – the home of premium quality free and paid themes. Each and every theme on this site is/will be exclusively designed, strategically coded and commented, SEO optimized, with theme admin options, widget-ready, supporting famous plug ins, documented, good support and more

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