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jremick
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Hey guys, while reviewing there are certain trends that reviewers begin seeing. It depends on each individual category but I wanted to take a few minutes to point out some of the trends I see the most in the Site Templates category.

These are a few of the reasons templates are most frequently rejected.

  1. Poor Typography

    (see: http://blog.themeforest.net/resources/10-typography-tips-for-web-designers/ )
  • Paragraph line-height (leading). Typical paragraph text is 12px. A line-height of 2em (24px) is generally much too large and is harder to read. Generally, a line-height of 1.3-1.6em (depending on font size and usage) is most appropriate. The line-height of your typography will affect your template’s aesthetics and I will reject your template if your typographic styles need improvements. A great resource on this: http://webtypography.net/Rhythm_and_Proportion/Vertical_Motion/2.2.2/
  • Visual Hierarchy. This seems to be a topic many designers know very little of, yet it is one of the most important aspects of a design. See point #4 in the link above (typography tips). I recommend designers research this topic and spend time refining your skills in this area. It will dramatically help your template aesthetics.
  • Text Alignment. Though I don’t generally reject templates specifically for text alignment, if it seriously contributes to poor aesthetics, I will. Justified alignment on the web should be used appropriately, though I often see it misused.
  • Validation

    There is absolutely no reason your template should have unnecessary validation errors. HTML5 and CSS3 “errors” will not count against your template. If there is a specific, justifiable reason for an error, that is fine. Otherwise, CHECK FOR ERRORS BEFORE SUBMITTING !!! <- Yes, I’m yelling this because I reject for errors all the time.
  • Poor Code

    • Poor list code. I don’t know why but many authors do not put footer navigations in a list; this is wrong. Have a series of links that are related? Put them in a list. Have a series of images that are related (slideshow, advertisements, social media icons)? Put them in a list. Series of related elements should be placed in a list to be more semantic.
    • List separators. Do not separate list items (like text links) with individual list items containing only the ”|” character. Individual list items should not be used for purely styling purposes. I don’t even think using ”|” characters for link separations should be accepted, but that would be a little overly strict. If you can style it with CSS , you should not use HTML to accomplish it.
  • These are some of the simplest aspects of a template, but a few of the most common problems I see. Hopefully by pointing these out it will help some of our new authors. :)

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    luckykind
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    Nice job Jarel… should be sticky-ed under Item Discussion after it’s run it’s course under the main forum…

    Q: The validation exceptions you mentioned, would one be for embedded video from sites like Youtube and such? I find it’s often impossible to Validate with a Youtube video embeded… are there any other common problem Validations that you guys let slide?

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    tigerlabs
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    Thanks for the info, Jarel. :)

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    jremick
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    Q: The validation exceptions you mentioned, would one be for embedded video from sites like Youtube and such? I find it’s often impossible to Validate with a Youtube video embeded… are there any other common problem Validations that you guys let slide?

    A: Yes, YouTube embeds are an exception. Other exceptions would be Google Maps embed code, etc. If there’s a good reason as to why something doesn’t validate, it’ll usually be fine. Another thing I would let through is the appropriate use of noscript in the head section of a template.

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    Ivor
    Envato team
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    Thanks for such a great post Jarel.

    ---

    @Luckikind I know that you mentioned Youtube just to say an example, but I think you can make the Youtube code valid with:

    <object type="application/x-shockwave-flash" height="350" data="http://www.youtube.com/v/mwc0wQt-L1Q" width="425">
    <param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/mwc0wQt-L1Q" />
    <param name="wmode" value="transparent" />
    </object>
    
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    jremick
    Envato team
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    Just for quick clarification, although you can make YouTube code validate (as Ivor showed), I don’t require it. The code provided by YouTube is fine for an author’s purpose. :)

    Thanks for the extra info Ivor! :)

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    luckykind
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    @Jarel – Thx.. good to know to try on those things, but not to beat ones head in over them :)

    @Ivor – I think you’re right… All the extra vars are what what usually kills validation… so thx :)

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    ThemesDepot
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    thanks jr for this post.

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    campolar
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    And never forget to keep your template at its best C.R.A.P. :D

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    inkk
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    thanks jarel for that post and this thread.

    and could you explain the difference between these two quotations:

    by
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    by
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    by
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