Creating Grid Layouts With Content View Pro

 

When I first started blogging I struggled a bit finding a gallery and grid WordPress plugin that I liked, found easy to use and worked with images, posts, galleries, and even affiliate thumbnails. Now I’ve found several I think are worth they’re weight in gold. Here’s one plugin for creating beautiful grids layouts easily in WordPress and you really should look at what it can do.

Here’s This Is A Fantastic Gallery – Grid WordPress Plugin

Frankly, I’m about to give away one of my big secrets because I wished I’d found this plugin sooner; it’s so handy. I’ve actually tried quite a few gallery and grid plugins out there: at least half a dozen or more. Some are nice but don’t work at all with css and javascript minification or caching for site performance; they look beautiful but are dog slow to load a page. Others maintain site performance but are difficult to work with and/or the support stinks. This one meets really excels: 1) it’s easy to use, 2) has support that answers emails and 3) makes truly amazing grid layouts of post, media, portfolios, and images. That’s true versatility.

Let’s face it. Every blogger needs a way to organize and present content.

FREE versus PAID Versions

Using grids does that; it can make it easier for them to find what they are searching for. Content View Pro is a handy plugin I use on quite a few websites for different visual content layouts on pages, posts and sidebar.  One reason I like Content View Pro is how intuitive it is.  The main reason I like this plugin is how creating grid layouts with Content View Pro is so easy to do. CV Pro also has a lot of styling that can easily change how the created grids look, and it works exceedingly well with minification and caching, two necessary functions for a speedy responsive website.

You’ll need the free version to use the Pro version. The free version called Content Views is found in the WordPress.org respository.  Click to install and then activate.  Then upload the Pro version after purchasing the license.

Once Content Views is installed it will show in the admin dashboard sidebar.

Tons of Features- Easy To Configure

While the free version is limited, the Pro version has a ton of ways to style grids of posts, pages, media and custom post types.  Upgrading to Pro is a no brainer.  The Pro version. is a far better price ($39) than many similar plugins and the support is responsive.

 

If you do decide to go with the Pro version, once the license has been purchased, you simply download the Pro plugin, install on top of the free version and add the license in.  Takes less than couple of minutes to do.  I’ve shown how easy it really is; just a simply click and paste.

content-views-settings-for-licensing-pro

Content View Pro is a great way to display grids of visual and textual content in a manner that attractive and professional looking.  It also can be used to organize you content visually so your reader can easy find what they are looking for.

Some plugins work well with galleries of images or posts.  However I’ve used Content View Pro for galleries and portfolios of various content types:  blog post layouts,  images with links used to showcase services offered, sidebar category widgets and many more.  It’s really up to what you need and how creative you want to get. Content View Pro does it efficiently.  Using this plugin has not slowed down any of the sites I’ve built.   Plus it really plays nice with CSS minification and caching and not all plugins do.

On a sidenote, if you don’t know about CSS or Javascript minification, you should pay attention.    Minification is one technique used to improve site performance and speed.  If you want a great explanation I like the one presented by KeyCDN here.


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So back to how to actually use Content View Pro  Using my demosite, let’s see a couple of cool ways to organize and create professional looking visual content grids on a web page.

The first grid is one every website and blog needs.  That is a grid of posts:  a blog layout.  Now a blog layout can really look different depending how it is set up.  For example, a blog layout could just be a single column with a featured image, title and excerpt.  That might be nice for a photo sharing site or user forum.  But for a blogging site, a 2 or 3 column layout with a thumbnail image, title and except (or just image/title) might be more engaging.  Content Views makes any of these options as easy as clicking on a couple of choices and looking at the preview.

Here’s how i set up a beautiful 3 column blog layout.

Give it a name to start.

blog-layout-3-column-content-view

Select the checkbox next to Post in the first tab called “Filters”.

While still in “Filters” scroll down to “Advance” and click on the checkbox by “Taxonomy”, then on the checkbox by “Category”.

In the Select Terms box under “Category”, clicking inside of the box will produce a drop down list of blog categories.  Pick the one associated with the blog posts that are desired to show in the grid.

One easy way is to make a blog layout of all the posts is to create a category called “Popular” and put all the posts in that category.  (You can also use tags instead of categories for this and it will work as well.) Click save.

 

 

 

Go to the next tab called “Display Settings” to configure the displayed grid.  In the Pro version, you have quite a variety of layouts possible.  In my demo I’ve selected the Pinterest layout for the demo.

Below that the “Title, Image and Excerpt are selected but you can easily make a grid of image only or any combo.

 

I’m going to use title and image just to show how it will look.

However under each default, different options for configuration are shown.

You can change the image size, how the image looks or even point to a video.  Modify the “Read more” link quickly and easily thru the configuration.

 

Change it from text to a button. Decide how much excerpt will be shown.  It’s all easy to do simply thru intuitive menus, checkboxes and dropdowns.

Want the text to look a certain way?  That’s pretty simple too.  Go to the next tab called “Animation” to overlay text onto the image or Go to the last tab to style each text element easily thru dropdown menus.  Even shuffle ads into your grids.  It’s all easy to do thru a very user friendly interface.

And that’s just a blog layout.  Once done open you blog page for editing and use the shortcode from the view by placing it into the page where ever you want the grid to show.

So my settings for the Pinterest layout shown here are the following

Filter Tab:   Post (checked), Taxonomy (checked), Category (checked), Selected Terms = Popular.

Display Settings Tab: Layout (Pinterest), 3 items per row, Format (show text and image vertically), Field Settings (show thumbnail, show text). Title (h3), Thumbnail: Medium(300×300), Shown all images in same size (checked), Style: Shadow, Lazyload (checked).

Animation Tab: None

Style Settings Tab: All defaults.

 

There’s so much more that can be done by simplying playing with the configuration to get the look you want. That’s a powerful tool in engaging with your perfect audience.

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