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TemplateJoomla: your resource for Joomla 4 templates

TemplateJoomla: your resource for Joomla 4 templates

November-TemplateDirectory

When you ask people why they haven’t migrated their Joomla 3 site to Joomla 4 yet, often the answer is that they’re hesitant because they haven’t found a template to replace their J3 one.

If you don’t want to dive into Joomla’s core template Cassiopeia and are looking for a beautiful template for your Joomla 4 website, TemplateJoomla makes it very easy for you. JCM interviews Daniel Dubois, the creator behind it.

Before we start talking about TemplateJoomla, could you tell us a little about yourself? 

Hello everyone. I’m Daniel, a French webmaster based in Brittany (France) and working exclusively with Joomla since 2014, when I created my business as site builder. 

My Joomla profiles are here: 

I’ve been involved in “few” Joomla projects (mainly as a JED Team member for 6 years) and because sharing is caring, I write and share a lot about our beloved CMS: hundreds of tutorials, 500+ articles on blogs and on the JCM, 60+ templates overrides, etc.

What is TemplateJoomla and why did you decide to create it? 

TemplateJoomla is my latest baby, launched last August. It’s a Joomla Templates Directory exclusively dedicated to J4 Templates and built with J4, of course.

I've decided to create it because there are tons of J3 websites to migrate to J4 and most of these sites will need a new template.  We all know that migration is a tricky time for site owners and some could be tempted to change to another CMS if they don’t find the perfect template for their J4 projects. This site was mainly built for all these projects.

I also wanted to highlight the fabulous creativity and resilience of the Joomla ecosystem. We have an awesome J4 version - thanks guys - and one year after the release, there are already 1500+ free and commercial J4 templates and more than 6000 J4 extensions available! It’s really amazing and I'm so grateful because without a J4 template, I simply couldn’t work today. Joomla developers, you demonstrate that you are the best in the game. Kudos guys!

At last, TemplateJoomla is also a love song to Joomla. We are so proud of our CMS, of its Community, of its ecosystem and we wanted to be a part of this fabulous project. This project is another small piece of the Joomla journey. 

What does TemplateJoomla prove?

This project proves that Joomla is clearly alive in 2022. No matter what the numbers say, volunteers, developers, evangelists, we are millions at Joomla. We are legion! Expect us! 

Many Joomlers wanted an official Joomla Template Directory but it has never happened. Creating this directory is a demonstration that everyone - in or outside the Community - can do something for Joomla. You just need an idea, a few hours of your time and you're good to go.

At last it proves that we don't really know our Joomla ecosystem. While creating this project, I discovered some template developers I didn't even know existed. So yes, we all have our habits, routines and go-to places when it comes to extensions and templates but having a fresh eye is never a bad idea, especially in a sector like ours when it changes so fast. 

Don’t fear to embrace change.

How does it work out so far? What feedback did you receive?

To be honest, we are very happy so far. Surprisingly, we've gained an unexpected audience thanks to Joomla.org, JoomlaShack, Joomla.fr but also sites like stekkedoos.be.

The response within the Joomla Community is really enthusiastic - as we are - and we had only positive critics and encouragement to improve the directory. For example, we've added the framework in the filtering options thanks to the Community feedback. It’s just amazing and incredible.

And it was amazing too because some templates developers contacted us directly to add their templates in the directory. This emulation around this project is very exciting.

Recently, we've added a new section "Joomla Deals" for more saving on templates and extensions. We are already thinking about new ideas to make this project even more visible and even more useful to many.

About the site itself. What template did you use to make it? Why that one?

Of course, the site is based on J4 and we've decided to go with Cassiopeia for the following reasons:

TemplateJoomla aims also to be a showcase for Joomla. The work done by the production team is simply amazing. We wanted to demonstrate that a website created with J4 and Cassiopeia is probably the best choice for many projects. See the Core Web Vitals scores of TemplateJoomla if you still have some doubts. Cassiopeia is very flexible and easy to customize. For example, we've only added 22 lines of CSS code in the user.css file. My Joomla motto is "stick to the core" for a few years and because "light is right", we didn't want a template with a framework or worse, create a template with an extension to reinvent the wheel. For that project, Cassiopeia was the best option and we are very proud to use it.

Did you use extensions, and if so, which one(s)?

Yes we've installed a few extensions but as few as possible.

Akeeba backup (everyone knows why) JSitemap Pro JCH Optimize for obvious reasons itcs Matomo, plugin for Matomo integration JL Content Fields Filter: for the filtering of the templates. This free module is just amazing.

Of course, the firewall and other protections installed are not mentioned here for obvious reasons.

To be efficient and to stick to the core as much as possible, we've built the directory the most simple we could. For example, there are only 5 modules (4 are core). For the all site.

Did you create this by yourself or did you have help?

I've created the site structure by myself. It was the fastest and most fun part of the project. Fastest because I had a clear vision about how I would create it. In a few days it was almost done. Most fun because making a site simple to maintain for the webmaster and simple to use for the end-user is a real intellectual challenge.

The longer part was entering the templates in the site. Creating an article, filling the fields, adding the image, etc. more than 1400 times. We’ve spent “many” hours here but we are fully convinced that it’s worth every minute. Maybe we could have done it much faster but it's done now. 

I had a huge help from Mera Bader (eternal gratitude to her for her great work) about the content. Now, she is a part of this project.

Just out of curiosity: how did you make the infinite scroll?

Oh yes you're right, I've forgotten to mention another extension here.

I've asked the Community what would be the best option for end users to display more than a thousand templates on the homepage. The infinite scroll appeared as the best option to consider in this case.

The templates overview on the homepage is powered by a magic plugin from Emir Sakic: AJAX Infinity - https://extensions.joomla.org/extension/ajax-infinity/

It does exactly what I was looking for, the parameters are simple and it works like a charm.

Are there other template directories for Joomla?

Yes, there are other Joomla Templates Directories and some of them deserve to be listed here:

https://www.phoca.cz/jtd/ : it's mainly a demo for Phoca Cart by Jan but it's also a template directory :) 

https://themeglobe.com : is an open source project created by Ciaran but maybe I’m wrong, it seems abandoned for a few months. 

There’s another one (with 870 J4 templates listed) but as I'm not sure about its ethics, I won't name it here. 

At this point, we consider these projects as friends, not competitors, because they are the symbol that Joomla is not dead. We really hope to see other Joomla Templates Directories coming alive in future. It will be a positive sign about how Joomla goes. An ecosystem like Joomla needs fresh projects otherwise, it disappears and dies. 

I understand you make money out of this by affiliate agreements with template developers. Is it common for template directories to work this way?

Money is clearly not our motivation with TemplateJoomla for some reasons.

First, you must know that around 40% of the templates listed are free. Then, we have also listed many commercial templates without affiliate links. Moreover, we've already unpublished around 70 templates with affiliate links (for ethical reasons). For people who don't have money or are opposed to affiliation, simply filter with the pricing parameter and you'll have hundreds of free Joomla 4 templates displayed on your screen. 

But the question about affiliate links is still very interesting.

Honestly, affiliation wasn't the plan when the project started. But I've bought the domain for $250 and I also have a few extensions licenses. So after some reflection, I've decided to go for affiliation because it’s the easiest way for everyone to support this project. TemplateJoomla is a Brave creator verified, so we accept BAT tips via your Brave browser.

Like many other sites, Templatejoomla will have a few hundred euros in operating costs per year: domain name, hosting, extension licenses, etc. It’s not reasonable to expect to make big money with these affiliate commissions but to refund our costs would be fair and a great satisfaction. No more.

How can we, the Joomlacommunity, benefit from TemplateJoomla?

For all the Joomla site builders, this project was thought to be a huge time saver. All the latest Joomla 4 templates are added in the directory, even those you weren't aware about. You don't have to spend hours searching on the Internet for new templates for your client's projects. In a few clicks, you'll have tens or hundreds of J4 templates displayed on your screen. 

Now, there’s a Joomla Template Directory to rule them all.

TemplateJoomla can be also very helpful when it comes to help a client to choose its next template. Few days ago, I shared the link to a site owner who was looking for some inspiration for its J3 to J4 migration. Thanks to TemplateJoomla, he found the perfect design with a free template and we'll start to migrate his site in the next coming weeks.

For the template developers, this project is also an excellent opportunity to showcase their work and maybe, gain new users / clients too. It will also drive you to a very qualified traffic to your site. With zero effort and for free! All we request for you is to inform us when you release a new Joomla 4 template.

And Joomla itself?

At TemplateJoomla, we really love Joomla. We are grateful this awesome free CMS exists since 2005 and still develops.

As site builders, we use it on a daily basis and like many others, we make money with it and thanks to it. 

So, promoting Joomla on a daily basis is natural for us but we also want to thank and support Joomla with this project.

So, here is a scoop for the JCM readers!

We've told earlier about the operating costs we are facing with this project (a few hundred euros per year). So, once these fees have been deducted from the affiliate commissions we'll receive, TemplateJoomla undertakes to donate 20% of the remaining amount to the Joomla project. From 1st November 2022, and this every year.

Because small streams make big rivers, thanks in advance for favoring Templatejoomla for your template purchases if, like us, you also want to support Joomla.

What is the ambition of TemplateJoomla?

With this project, we have no personal ambitions apart from doing our best and our duty daily for Joomla users. 

Beside this, we see TemplateJoomla as:

Inspiring - Our biggest pride would be that many other projects - not necessarily for templates - come alive after this article. It would be evidence that the Joomla ecosystem is dynamic and resilient. 

For those interested in creating a similar (or different) project, there is a free copy of TemplateJoomla available upon request.

Helping - Whether helping template creators with visibility or site builders with time, TemplateJoomla aims to be a help for the all Joomla ecosystem.

And if we have done it correctly,  we will be very happy to help the Joomla project by donating each year as support, thanks to all of you.

Joomla 4 is a fantastic version and we must be proud and loud about our CMS’s qualities. Let’s spread the Joomla love all together!

You can find TemplateJoomla here: https://templatejoomla.com/

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