Examples of WordPress websites

By Creative Bloq Staff April 24, 2014 Web design
Once regarded as just a blogging tool, WordPress has quickly become a fully fledged content management system (CMS) for professional web designers and agencies, used on millions of sites across the world.

Yet many still think of it as a tool for amateurs and hobbyists. To set the record straight, we’ve picked some of the best WordPress websites around to show you just what this incredible content management system is capable of…

  1. This Is Your Kingdom

Top examples of WordPress websites

“This is Your Kingdom is probably one of my proudest WordPress builds,” comments developer Kim Lawler
This is Your Kingdom is a site that brings together style and substance to help visitors find activities in their local area. Simple in its concept, the site is much more complex when we start to consider all of its inner workings and potential.

Designed by Katie Marcus, and robustly developed by Kim Lawler, the site is built to handle growing levels of content. Lawler used WordPress to allow site editors and guest bloggers to update easily and regularly, giving visitors plenty of reasons to return regularly.

The delicate, playful design hints at a wide range of activities shared on the site, and does a great job of being appealing and eye-catching, without being stereotypically girly or niche. Illustration plays a big part in the appeal of the site, paving the way for imagination and exploration.

  1. Travel Portland

Top examples of WordPress websites

The beautifully responsive Travel Portland site is built on WordPress
Travel Portland aims to inspire people to visit Portland in Oregon, US, and to help them plan their trip with tools and content highlighting the unique opportunities in the city. Clean design is on every page of its site with images telling of the Portland experience, from waterfalls to food trucks.

The beautifully responsive site is built on WordPress and uses a customised responsive theme based on Zurb’s Foundation framework. Third-party APIs are also utilised throughout the site, including: Storify, MapBox, Weather Underground and ChooseCulture.

The team also used MaxMind’s geolocation API to give them the capability to customise content on the homepage based on the location of the visitor. This lets them serve different information for in-town visitors versus those in the planning phases.

  1. Worry Free Labs

Top examples of WordPress websites

The Worry Free Labs site was built using WordPress and HTML5
Worry Free Labs is a web agency based in New York that markets itself for its expertise in building remarkable mobile experiences. Where better to show off its skills than on its own site?

On monitoring the website traffic, Jason Curry, founder at Worry Free Labs, says, “our web traffic from mobile and tablet has been increasing dramatically,” so a responsive website was the way to go.

Like most web agencies, Worry Free Labs decided to make use of HTML5. There are some lovely touches throughout the site that make browsing on mobile an enjoyable experience, from the easy sliding and animation on the work page, and the automated reveal on scroll slides under services, to the swipe to send button on the contact form.

  1. I Shot Him

“Our resources all pointed to WordPress as the quickest and most useful route,” comments Jeter
Intriguingly named San Francisco-based agency I Shot Him doesn’t take itself too seriously. “We are a studio that learns as we go. When we first started learning how to develop sites, our resources all pointed to WordPress as the quickest and most useful route,” explains co-founder Michael Jeter.

“Over time, we’ve learned that our clients are pretty good at understanding the backend, so we’ve kept using it to ensure the ease of transition for clients,” Jeter continues. “We’ve looked into a few other options but none of them have convinced us to convert.”

  1. Great Lengths Hair

The Great Lengths Hair site is a brilliant example of how flexible and powerful WordPress can be
Great Lengths Hair is a fully responsive website for a hair extensions fashion brand that was built by Turn Key, which is based in Leeds. “We used various JavaScript techniques and frameworks to achieve the responsive and infinite loading techniques,” says development director Andrew Markham-Davies.

Although the site is image-heavy, different images are loaded depending on the screen dimensions. The responsive navigation is also clean, easy-to-use and responds quickly to touch.

The site is built on WordPress showing once again how flexible and powerful this CMS can be. There are also a number of the new HTML5 elements used throughout the site such as <header> and <footer> . The popular Masonry library is used for positioning social elements depending on page width. The W3C Geolocation API is also taken advantage of to help users locate the nearest stockist of the hair products.

  1. Toronto Standard

Examples of WordPress sites

The entire Toronoto Standard site runs on WordPress
Digital creative agency Playground was behind the design of this redesign for the Toronto Standard. Creative director at Playground Ryan Bannon explains, “The client was an investor who had purchased the rights to an old Toronto news brand and wanted to reinvent it as a purely digital, fresh voice in the Toronto editorial scene. That was about it; purely digital, fresh voiced editorial.

“The site uses mostly HTML5 and CSS3. One of the most important tools we used are CSS3 media queries, which allowed us to reorganise our dynamic grid to make an experience that always fit the browser size. On the backend, the entire site runs on WordPress so there’s not a complex proprietary system for contributors to learn.”

  1. Harvey Nichols

Examples of WordPress sites

Digital agency Pod1 used WordPress and the Magento Enterprise open source platform to develop this site for Harvey Nichols
This site for international luxury fashion destination Harvey Nichols was created by digital agency Pod1. Fadi Shuman, co-founder of Pod1 explains, “The brief was an exciting ecommerce proposition to deliver the luxury shopping proposition, to be flexible in its design for campaign imagery and themes.

“We were tasked with revamping the retailer’s online presence and upgrading its website using the Magento Enterprise open source platform and WordPress. Pod1 worked closely with Harvey Nichols, with a team of 10 people on each side in constant communication to make the project a success.”

  1. Captain Creative

Examples of WordPress sites

Designer and art director Brad James set up his own online identity using WordPress
A true superhero of the web world has finally revealed himself. And he has a website! Brad James is a self-described “mild mannered designer and art director” based over in New South Wales, Australia. Although he works for agency, iQmultimedia, James has set up as his own online identity named Captain Creative.

To manage James’s online identity and leave enough time to save the world (wide web) he chose WordPress, “mainly because I knew I wanted a portfolio and blog combined into the one site,” says James. He adds, “I don’t write code so it also helps that it’s widely used in case I run into any technical problems. I’d also used it previously as a CMS for other website clients, so I was familiar with the interface.”

However, James warns, “It does have its downsides. I had a security issue recently where someone was able to modify the appearance of the site and even change my WP login credentials. Fortunately, I was able to sort it out without too much trouble. Lesson learnt: make sure you keep your version of WP updated!”

  1. Little

Little strikes a difficult balancing act between page weight and high-quality imagery
Little has provided strategic design thinking and execution to meet external and internal business challenges for Fortune 500 companies, nonprofits and others for over 30 years. “With a significant portion of web traffic moving towards tablet and mobile, it was imperative that we addressed the browsing experience needs of our users,” designer Michael Arney tells us. “I was confident that as long as we were using a responsive framework like Bootstrap and an easy-to-use CMS like WordPress we’d be setting ourselves up for long-term success.”

The homepage features the amount of imagery necessary to showcase Little’s portfolio of high-profile clients, but rather than serve the same assets to a mobile device that a desktop browser would receive, the images are optimised for Retina screens – resulting in a manageable page weight. It’s a difficult balancing act between page weight and high-quality imagery, but Little has hit the mark, resulting in a beautiful design.

  1. Poster Roast

Examples of WordPress

Poster Roast is a platform for UK artists to promote their screen-printed gig posters
Poster Roast is a platform for UK artists to promote their screen-printed gig posters. The site first came about when Telegramme was commissioned by Alex Curtis and Chris White. Director of Telegramme Studio Robert Evans explains, “I met them last year at various gigs and exhibitions they were putting on. We got chatting about the emerging gig poster scene in the UK, and the idea arose of giving all the artists an easy way to get people to see and buy their work.”

“The project was an extracurricular activity outside of our working hours. This meant we had to be thrifty and work out how to cut out time spent learning new code so we could concentrate on the design. It needed to be reliable, with good support from its original designers via email and forums. It needed to take the worry of ‘If I do this, will it break?’ We’ve worked with the guys at Organic Themes before and they’re really helpful.

“We used the excellent WP E-Commerce with gold cart plug-in. Tweaked for the specific usage of the site, we used the categories in a slightly different way to its intention. The plug-in is really flexible to cater for various uses and solid enough to play around with, without breaking it. The most useful element of this plug-in was its ease of integration within any theme structure. Widgets and short codes let you add categories and products wherever you need them, enabling you to drive traffic to where you want.”

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