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FinalDestiny says


I do not write a contact form because i think that it will sell my theme i write it for the following reasons:

1. Seamless integration. Plugins looks like a Porche fixed with Beetle parts. it’s ugly nobody wants ugly.

2.Saves me time because I do not have to spend the time supporting all the plugins that’s out there, and do not enqueue javascript correctly and and and …....... I code once and support rarely.

3. a lot of plugin authors support is notoriously absent and if a client does not get support from the authors they will come to me and send me 100 mails for assistance, and get angry if i give them the run around. Writing my own functionality means that i will save on time. save on support and have happy customers.

4. A lot of the customers do not choose the plugins that they are getting, but the developers that they appointed chose that. 3 years from buying the theme the customers clicks update on a plugin and all sorts of hell is loose and the developers do not fix their stuff they send the customer to the theme author. Writing my own code fixes all of that.

5. Thinking that the customer will not try different plugins in his lifetime is a crazy idea, and there’s absolutely zero convergence between plugins, so the “loose my functionality if i change themes” is stupid. They loose it anyhow when they try a new plugin

1. You’re clearly using the wrong plugins or are completely ignorant to some of the great options out there. Gravity Forms, Formiddable, Ninja Forms—All three are excellent options that look and work great. In order to support them you need nothing more than a few lines of CSS.

2. Saves you time by spending hours writing your own contact form functionality (assuming it’s not just a simple email form that can be done in 20 minutes)? Utilizing an existing solution that provides far more advanced functionality than you can write in an hour actually saves so much more time. The three plugins I mentioned above are lead by development teams that operate their entire business around their form plugins. Trying to claim that they don’t offer support or that they don’t fix bugs is nothing short of pure arrogance.

3. Then choose the well supported plugins, like the three I mentioned.

4. Using the TGM Activation class you can choose the recommended plugin(s) for your buyers. If the customers choose to use something else, that’s their decision.

So, we should create themes and recommend 50 plugins in order to achieve the demo layout? Really? It’s not enough now, when we provide sample .xml files for the demo, that we get lots of questions “How do I replicate the demo”, we need to include 50 plugins as well, great job. And who will support those plugins? In 3 years half of those plugins may be deprecated, who guarantees for them? You? At least for my code, I maintain it or remove the theme altogether.

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mordauk says

2. About the wpautop – I know we cannot screw with the wp core but can we still filter for example our shortcodes to avoid p and br tags injection all over the theme?

No, you cannot do that. Those filters cause major compatibility problems with hundreds of plugins. I’ve personally lost 100s of support hours due to those filters. Utilize this instead: justintadlock.com/archives/2012/10/03/grid-columns-wordpress-plugin

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UXbarn says

@mordauk – Could you please advise my question in the previous comment? Here I quote it again:



The point that everyone who has said this is missing that NO, you should not be creating your own custom plugins for all of your short codes, you should be relying on freely available plugins that are already released.

For example, if you want to support columns in your theme, simply use the Grid Columns plugin from Justin Tadlock: http://justintadlock.com/archives/2012/10/03/grid-columns-wordpress-plugin

...

There is zero reason (absolutely zero) for any theme to ever build in their own contact form, or their own column short codes.

May I ask why it is zero reason? I think it can be applied to some cases, but not all.

It is understandable for the contact form or some other page elements but I’m not sure about the column stuff (and perhaps some other features that are “unique” for each theme). For example, what if the structure of the theme is quite complicated by the creative design and needs some specific ways to create such layout and features. Can all the column plugins out there solve this problem? What if they can’t? (Note that I haven’t tried all plugins, it’s just an example.)

Another example might be about portfolio showcase. What if theme author wants to add some “selling points” to the portfolio in the theme. Surely no free plugins out there can serve his unique requirement. What to do then?

What do you suggest in these situations?
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mordauk says

@FinalDestiny If you need 50 plugins to replicate your layouts, you’re doing something seriously wrong.

Quick (by no means conclusive) count:

1. A plugin for a contact form 2. A plugin for a page builder (assuming Envato decides to not allow these) 3. A plugin for ecommerce, if your theme supports it 4. A plugin (maybe) for pricing tables. These are still allowed, so entirely optional 5. A plugin for columns

So I count 5, and 3 of those are optional for the vast majority of themes.

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OriginalEXE says


2. About the wpautop – I know we cannot screw with the wp core but can we still filter for example our shortcodes to avoid p and br tags injection all over the theme?
No, you cannot do that. Those filters cause major compatibility problems with hundreds of plugins. I’ve personally lost 100s of support hours due to those filters. Utilize this instead: justintadlock.com/archives/2012/10/03/grid-columns-wordpress-plugin
No, they don’t if done right: https://gist.github.com/bitfade/4555047
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FinalDestiny says

Good, and how about portfolio features? Like, we have some incredible portfolio idea and of course, no plugin is available for it. Why would I create it in a plugin for another user to use with another theme? It’s my idea, my plugin, created for that specific theme, not for all the themes available here. Why would I provide support for someone using another theme? About social options or icons, maybe I want my own icons, there’s no plugin for them, I should create a plugin for them too, yeah, because of damn standards.

Standards means no creativity and use of as-generic-as-possible layout with as-many-free-plugins-as-possible. The best combination.

And for pricing tables, why would I be limited to some dummy generic layout some plugins offer me, when I maybe have like some killer ideas for those pricing tables? Because standards, that’s why

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mordauk says

@UXbarn For contact forms, there are several reasons:

1. If a user has a theme that provides a “Contact Page” template and they utilize it for their contact form, then switch themes to one that doesn’t have a contact page template, the user will lose their contact form.

2. There are four extremely popular and well-supported plugins that provide all of the basic contact form functionality plus so much more. No matter what theme a user is using, their contact page will still work if the form is provided by a plugin. Ninja Forms, Formiddable Forms, Gravity Forms, Contact Form 7 . . . all are excellent options.

3. It is more worth a theme developer’s time to invest time making the theme (styles, layouts, etc) than it is to focus on building a basic or advanced contact form. In 30 minutes, you can easily provide full support for any of the plugins I”ve mentioned by writing a few lines of CSS.

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Jaynesh says

@FinalDestiny If you need 50 plugins to replicate your layouts, you’re doing something seriously wrong.

Quick (by no means conclusive) count:

1. A plugin for a contact form 2. A plugin for a page builder (assuming Envato decides to not allow these) 3. A plugin for ecommerce, if your theme supports it 4. A plugin (maybe) for pricing tables. These are still allowed, so entirely optional 5. A plugin for columns

So I count 5, and 3 of those are optional for the vast majority of themes.

This is coming from somebody that doesn’t even have any items in ThemeForest. It’s easy for you to support these requirements when you obviously don’t have to update all your ThemeForest items.

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mordauk says



2. About the wpautop – I know we cannot screw with the wp core but can we still filter for example our shortcodes to avoid p and br tags injection all over the theme?
No, you cannot do that. Those filters cause major compatibility problems with hundreds of plugins. I’ve personally lost 100s of support hours due to those filters. Utilize this instead: justintadlock.com/archives/2012/10/03/grid-columns-wordpress-plugin
No, they don’t if done right: https://gist.github.com/bitfade/4555047

Yes, they can be done right. Unfortunately the vast majority of themes that have implemented those have not done it right. It became so much of a problem that it’s been put on the “black list” because it’s so easy to get wrong.

Rely on a plugin like Justin Tadlocks (a truly top notch developer that is respected and revered throughout the entire WP dev community) and you don’t even need to worry about this.

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UXbarn says

@UXbarn For contact forms, there are several reasons:

1. If a user has a theme that provides a “Contact Page” template and they utilize it for their contact form, then switch themes to one that doesn’t have a contact page template, the user will lose their contact form.

2. There are four extremely popular and well-supported plugins that provide all of the basic contact form functionality plus so much more. No matter what theme a user is using, their contact page will still work if the form is provided by a plugin. Ninja Forms, Formiddable Forms, Gravity Forms, Contact Form 7 . . . all are excellent options.

3. It is more worth a theme developer’s time to invest time making the theme (styles, layouts, etc) than it is to focus on building a basic or advanced contact form. In 30 minutes, you can easily provide full support for any of the plugins I”ve mentioned by writing a few lines of CSS.

Sorry, maybe I was not clear. I already mentioned in my previous comment that I understand about the point of contact form. But what I don’t understand are about these:

... what if the structure of the theme is quite complicated by the creative design and needs some specific ways to create such layout and features. Can all the column plugins out there solve this problem? What if they can’t? (Note that I haven’t tried all plugins, it’s just an example.)

Another example might be about portfolio showcase. What if theme author wants to add some “selling points” to the portfolio in the theme. Surely no free plugins out there can serve his unique requirement. What to do then? What do you suggest in these situations?
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