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Google PageRank

By Sean, April 6th, 2010

I just wanted to let the Get Free Web Designs (GFWD) Open Source Web Design community know that we are now a Google Page Rank 7 (PR7) which is awesome! We were sitting at a PR5 for quite sometime but thanks to the continued use and support from the GFWD’s community, we keep moving up in the rankings.

Having a PR 7 is great news. We are finally becoming a top notch web design and template provider, but having a PR7 also helps our community of web designers and graphic artists who submit web templates to the site and getting the word out. Again, thank you for your continued support. We greatly appreciate everything you do.

In other news as of this blog post, Get Free Web Designs now have 673 approved free XHTML and CSS web templates available for download.

In the coming months, we’ll have some new features added to the site and also to our community forum. Just because the blog is not updated daily (or weekly) doesn’t mean things are not being worked on around the site. As the old saying goes, “no news is good news”.

Basically it’s just a matter of balancing real life work and running an Open Source Web Design community. I think we’ve got a pretty nice balance at the moment but as time goes on, updates will become more frequent on the blog.

In closing, keep those design submissions coming, continue to use our community forum and spread the word about Get Free Web Designs.

Reseller Hosting

By Sean, March 5th, 2010

Reseller Hosting For Designers:

If you own a web design agency or if you are a web designer with clients under you, then the concept of reseller hosting may not be new for you.

In addition, entrepreneurs looking for a profitable hosting business, also go with reseller web hosting. That said, let us look at some basics of reseller hosting and see how this can benefit you.

In general, web design agencies opt for a good reseller hosting account. Here are a few reasons how this can benefit you:

  1. Provide hosting with your name, your name servers etc. Branded hosting.
  2. Billing that includes automatic collection of due amount from customer credit card.
  3. Control panel for each of your client.
  4. Allot preset Disk space and bandwidth for each client.
  5. You focus on business and design aspects while your data center operator (from your “parent hosting” company- referred as “parent” henceforth in this article) maintains your infrastructure and hardware for you.
  6. Remember, you always face the client direct and for your clients you run the hosting company and provide them support. But you always have support and backing from your parent company and can resolve issues amicably.

These are only some of the benefits of reseller hosting. Basically you can purchase a good reseller hosting account, brand it with your business name and start a hosting company pretty easily.

Many web designers successfully run a hosting business this way. You can rent or lease an entire server from a hosting company or purchase blocks of shared hosting.

Usually when you first start out, you will go with a shared hosting reseller account to keep costs down and once you become more successful with more paid hosting clients, you can go for a dedicated web server.

With cost of reseller hosting accounts so affordable, this is really a good solution for web designers with clients or web design agencies, not only for convenience and branding, but also for an extra revenue source.

With excellent best web hosting companies out there, you can find a very reliable reseller hosting company by doing good research. Happy hosting!

Welcome To 2010

By Sean, February 2nd, 2010

Happy New Year! Welcome to the year 2010. This post is about a month too late, but better late then never I always say :bakie:

Things are moving along quite nicely here on Get Free Web Designs. As of this blog post we currently have 626 open source web designs available for free download and our community forum is getting some good use too.

So yeah, there isn’t too much else to say at this point. I just wanted to check in with everyone and say hello, so “hello”.

Thank you to everyone from the Open Source Web Design Community for your continued support, use and help with the site. Without you, Get Free Web Designs wouldn’t be the success it is today.

Happy Birthday GFWD

By Sean, December 9th, 2009

Boy, time sure does fly when you’re having fun. Get Free Web Designs is now one year old. Happy Birthday to us! Let’s recap what’s taken place on the site the past year or so…

Early November 2008 I started a partnership with Aaron to build the site. We discussed what we should call the site, what do we want it to have or not have feature wise, example do we want a forum or designs only, etc.

At the same time, we discussed a road map for the site and began writing custom code from the ground up to make the site do what we wanted, but also be scalable for future plans and features.

Once Aaron and I had the road map in place, we setup a development server to begin our programming work, setup a basecamp to track everything we were both working on and also toyed around with a handful of “possible” names to call the site.

On November 27, 2008 I registered the domain name that would become the next Open Source Web Design site.

Approximately one year ago on December 8, 2008 we started private beta testing Get Free Web Designs with a few select designers.

The following day (Dec 9, 2008) after the start of our private beta testing, we launched our Top 10 Web Design Statistics page on the site. This was a very welcomed edition to the site from a lot of the designers.

December 18, 2008 the site reaches 106 free open source web design templates. Not bad for being in a private “invite only” beta.

Over the next few weeks or so Aaron and I did a lot of testing, coding, more testing and feature enhancements to the site and a few designers continued submitting designs to the site.

Early January 2009 we started working with Wolfram to make a custom web design for use on the site.

On February 1, 2009 we officially opened up the site to the public with 167 designs available to download. We wanted at least 100 and we passed that goal by almost double. We were very pleased.

February 12, 2009 the GFWD’s WordPress Widget was released. This widget allows you to display a feed of the most recent designs from Get Free Web Designs right on your blog or any WordPress powered site.

February 26, 2009 we launched our Free Design Resources page loaded with good tutorials on things like HTML, CSS and fancy graphic design work with Photoshop. The resources page has really grown the past year. Lots of good stuff on it.

Over the next few months a lot of things took place on Get Free Web Designs that I won’t recap here. I just want to highlight some of the more memorable things in this post. You can check out the GFWD blog for additional specifics.

August 22, 2009 we publicly announced that a community forum would be coming to the site. Of course the OSWD community was very pleased to hear this news, however the process of actually getting it launched had many delays as you will read on the blog.

September 26, 2009 after searching some old backups, I located the bakie smiley and it was added to Get Free Web Designs :bakie:

December 6, 2009, about 3 months after announcing we would have a forum on the site, we finally got it launched and opened a 24 hour “invite only” beta testing phase.

The following day on December 7, 2009 the forum was linked up on the site and made public to everyone.

So there you go, a pretty complete recap of what’s taken place since Aaron and I launched the site over a year ago.

As of today and this post, we have 577 free open source web designs available for download, a new community forum and a bright future ahead of us.

Thank you to everyone for your continued support over the years with the many different design sites around the web.

Moderator Positions

By Sean, October 5th, 2009

Now that we are ready to roll out the Get Free Web Designs forum, we’re currently looking for a few people, maybe 4 or 5 to help around the site and join our support and moderation team.

At the moment, the available positions are for forum moderators only. You will not be required to approve or deny design template submissions.

I know a few people are interested in being a moderator on GFWD, but I figured it would be good to post about it again just to make sure who’s in or out.

So what will be required of you being a moderator on GFWD?

For now you will help keep the peace on the forum once it goes public. You’ll also remove spam type posts and/or comments. You’ll also have the ability to block or ban users who violate the forum rules, policies and guidelines.

Speaking of forum rules, policies and guidelines, they are still being ironed out but whoever gets accepted to be a moderator will help shape those rules. I do have some general rules to use as a base, but it would be good to get some moderator feedback on it since you will be part of the team here at Get Free Web Designs.

I’m also thinking it would be good to have moderators in different timezones around the world to help keep things running smooth morning, noon and night.

Ok, so if you are interested in helping out on GFWD by filling moderation positions getting ready to open up, contact us directly with the subject “moderator position”. Be sure to let us know where you are located and any experience you have in forum moderation and why you feel you would be a good moderator for GFWD.

Design Submission Advice

By Sean, October 1st, 2009

After approving 500+ submissions on Get Free Web Designs to date and giving each designer some advice on how to get the most exposure for the design templates they submit, I figured it was time for a blog post on the subject.

We are really thankful for all the support the Open Source Web Design community gives GFWD’s. Many designers submit multiple designs which is great, however if you submit them all back to back, you won’t get extended home page exposure.

My advice is to submit one design, wait a few days (2-3), then submit another design and so forth, that way you will get good exposure on the home page as well as the inner design pages over time and not just one big push when you submit designs.

For SEO and better download counts, don’t forget to add tags to your designs when you submit them. Tags like “clean design” or “professional business layout” are just a couple examples to use.

So “what if” you forgot to add tags when you submitted your designs? Don’t worry because you can edit your design submissions from your GFWD dashboard and add the tags.

The above advice will be good for you as a designer and also the OSWD community as a whole. Put it into practice and you will see some amazing results.

Thank you again for your support. Here’s to the next 500 submissions on Get Free Web Designs :bakie:

We Have Bakies

By Sean, September 26th, 2009

Ok, after a little searching of my backups and making one small change, GFWD’s now has the bakie smiley available:

:bakie:

Oh how I missed tasty bakies, as I’m sure you did too.

To get the bakie to show up in comments, use : bakie : but remove the spaces before and after the word bakie. I hope that makes sense.

411 Approved Designs

By Sean, June 11th, 2009

As we approach the halfway mark for the month of June 2009 things are moving along at a nice steady pace around Get Free Web Designs.

As of this GFWD weblog post we now have 411 approved free open source web designs available for download.

Thank you again to all the designer and user support for Get Free Web Designs. Without you, GFWD’s wouldn’t be the site it is today.

Lets continue to move forward and make Get Free Web Designs a premier high quality source for free XHTML and CSS web designs.

GFWD Site Features

By Sean, May 22nd, 2009

The month of May 2009 is coming to a close and here in the US we’re getting ready for a nice 3-day holiday weekend. The weather is suppose to be nice too. w00t!

However since I’m a geek with social skills I’ll have my laptop close by and working on Get Free Web Designs (while having a cold beer and some BBQ), so with that in mind I wanted to have an open call for new site feature requests.

So here is how it works, if you have ideas or a feature request that you would like to see here on Get Free Web Designs, leave a comment below with your idea or request. If you don’t want to leave a comment, that’s cool, you can always use our contact form.

As your feature requests come in, we will add them to our basecamp for possible inclusion into the GFWD source code and once we decide what will be added next, of course it will be posted here on the official Get Free Web Designs Blog.

All ideas and feature requests will be seriously considered by Aaron and myself because we want to make GFWD’s a top notch web design portal. We are already well on our way with 387 free open source web designs as of this post.

Thank you again for your continued support of GFWD’s. We really appreciate everyone who contributes to the site and helps support all the open source web designers. Have a nice weekend.

Cheers,

-Sean

373 Approved Designs

By Sean, May 4th, 2009

Welcome to May 2009. Things are moving along really well around Get Free Web Designs. As of this blog post we now have 373 approved free open source web designs available for download.

As mentioned in a previous blog post about 338 approved web designs, our visitor traffic is really picking which is nice, so I wanted to share more visitor stats:

  • December 2008: 1,253 visitors
  • January 2009: 2,933 visitors
  • February 2009: 6,059 visitors
  • March 2009: 9,630 visitors
  • April 2009: 12,270 visitors

Now for something really exciting, for the first view days in May we’ve already had 1,147 visitors which is really awesome since we are only 4 days into the month.

Thank you again to all of our open source web designers, site users and viewers for your continued support of Get Free Web Designs.

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