Design Market Standards

Standards for templates designed on Showit

JT Pals avatar
Written by JT Pals
Updated over a week ago

To ensure a great user experience, every design submitted to the market must pass these standards in order to be accepted. We also encourage all designers to follow these standards with any design so that our team can better support your clients.

These standards match our content on our Design Market Standards Course a required course to participate in our Design Partner program.

Updated September 2023 - Additional Standards Added


Let’s start things off by clarifying some non-design related requirements that are specific to the Showit Design Market:

Design Market Rules:

  • Site designs need to be designed for industry categories currently sold through the Showit Design Market (sell other designs on your own store).

  • All images used within your example site should be family friendly

  • No Lorem Ipsum - all temporary placeholder text should be in English 

  • All blog templates should be tested on a Designer Test Blog before distribution.

Licensed Content:

  • The designer is responsible for acquiring and maintaining all licenses for distribution of media used in their design including custom fonts, photos, icons, graphics and media.  Showit will not be held responsible.

  • All media (custom fonts, images, videos) used within a design is distributed to the end user when it is shared. Any restrictions on use of the design content in a user's site should be communicated in the written store description of the design, available before purchase.


Designer Starter Templates:

  • You’ll need to start your designs from our Designer Starter Templates, the Simple design, or one of your derivatives of those templates (create your own starter templates).

  • Designs started from another designer's work will be immediately disqualified. (yes, we can tell 😉)


Vanity URL:

  • The design's Vanity URL has been customized. (see video)


  • All fonts in Selected Fonts list are used within the design. 

  • There are no missing fonts in the design (“-Choose a font-” does not appear on any text boxes)

  • Designer has the rights to distribute any uploaded fonts included in the design (Google Fonts are free to distribute)

Setup Colors & Type Styles

  • Type Styles have no missing fonts and no missing style settings (all fields should have a default setting).

  • All fonts shown on the Fonts tab appear to be in use within the design.  Any unused fonts have been removed from the active font list.


Full Site Design Required Pages:

We require the following pages be included in all full site designs distributed through Showit’s Design Market.

  • Home

  • Launching Soon (pre-launch page, basic social/contact links, a countdown?)

  • Blog (Post List blog template)

  • Single Post (Single Post blog template)

  • Page (Page blog template)

💡Page or Canvas designs (considered Add-ons) do not require these pages.

Page Naming:

Follow these standards for page naming.

  • Keep page names short and basic (ie. Home, About, Gallery).

  • Page names are used for the URL of the page. (ie. /home   /about   /gallery )

  • Stick to generic naming (ie. About , not About Amy) when creating a template site to avoid a user needing to change the page name because changing a page name will break links to that page.

No Landing Pages:

  • Old school landing pages with little text and basic “Enter” links (or links to separate parts of a site) are bad for SEO because they provide little content.

  • Landing pages are relics from the old Flash days and unnecessary on HTML5 sites.

  • Instead use a canvas at the top of your home page that’s set to Window Height to provide the same dramatic feel.

  • Temporary "Coming Soon" or "Launching Soon" pages are ok. 👍🏼

Additional Pages:

These are some additional pages that are great to include in a site.

Page Canvases:

Canvases within a page should be checked for the following:

  • Site canvases are appropriately used for Navigation, Footer and any other commonly shared parts of the site.

  • Grow with Content is set on canvases with a Tiled Gallery or on appropriate sections of a blog templateNo vertical edge locking is set on a tiled gallery (it stretches the images) and is unnecessary

  • Stacking Order is adjusted correctly for any canvases set to Sticky


Site Canvases should be used in a design for any of the following sections of a site

  • All navigation canvases (desktop and mobile)

  • Any section that repeats across multiple pages

  • A blog sidebar canvas

  • Links in a navigation canvas are properly set to Text Tag: nav   (This tells Google the importance of these links)

  • Mobile Nav - All links have an action to “Hide This Canvas”

  • Mobile Nav - Sticky (if used) functions properly on every page

  • Mobile Nav - Hidden to start (if used) functions properly on every page

  • No h1 text tags used on any site canvas

  • Footer: any navigation links set to Text Tag: nav (nav is never used on external links)

  • Blog sidebar is used as a Site Canvas for easy user editing


Configure Form Fields:

  • All text fields have a Label set, correctly describing the field

  • Name field is active for “In Subject” & “Required”

  • Email field is active for “Reply-To” & “Required”

  • Primary message field is active for “Required”

  • TIP: The Text Tag (ie. h1, h2, div, p) setting on form fields no longer matters

Setup Tabbing on Form

  • All form fields have been organized in the layers list in the order they appear, from top to bottom as shown on the mobile layout.

Submitting a Contact Form

  • Submit button/text is linked and active for “Submit Contact Form”

  • Linked canvas or page is available in design (not missing)

  • Linked canvas or page is designed with confirmation message

  • Any text box linked to submit is set to Text Tag: div (only applies to text, not graphics)


  • Galleries should never be locked with any of the Vertical Stretch locking options or it may results in distortion of images


Page SEO Options

  • SEO Settings are left empty for a user to customize

Organize ALL Layers

  • Layers are organized for better user understanding

Optimize Text Tags for SEO

  • Only one (1) h1 tag is used per page (very important)

  • Your heading (h) text tags should follow a hierarchical structure h1 before h2 before h3

  • Main menu links are set to nav tag to designate navigation

  • Design related text elements are set to div tag


The following blog templates are required for all designs on our Showit Design Market:

The "Blog" (Post List) Template

  • Template is named exactly “Blog

  • Set as WordPress Template: Post List

  • Newer/Older Posts Link placeholders are used

  • Featured images are linked to Click Actions > WordPress Post

  • Buttons/links to view full post are linked to Click Actions > WordPress Post

  • Layout handles flexible expanding text areas (ie. Post Title, Post Excerpt) by cropping or correctly growing

  • Post Title placeholder set to Text Tag: h2 (not h1)

  • Layout renders correctly on mobile/desktop when connected to a test blog (no post skipping)

Single Post Template:

  • Template page name is set to “Single Post”

  • Template is set to WordPress Template: Single Post

  • Post Title placeholder can grow in a canvas separate from Post Content

  • Post Content placeholder can grow in a canvas separate from Post Title

  • Canvases with Post Title, Post Date, Post Content, Featured Image, are all set to WordPress: In Post Loop

  • Canvases with Post Comments, Comment Form, are set to WordPress: Static Content

  • Canvases are set to Grow With Content (desktop & mobile) when containing a placeholder that will grow (ie. Post Title, Post Content)

  • Next/Previous Single Post Link placeholders are in a Grow With Content canvas set to WordPress: Static Content

  • Entire page properly renders properly on desktop and mobile when connected to a Test Blog

Page Template:

  • Template page name is set to “Page”

  • Template is set to WordPress Template: Page

  • Post Title placeholder can grow in a canvas separate from Post Content

  • Post Content placeholder can grow in a canvas separate from Post Title

  • Canvases with Post Title, Post Content, Featured Image, are all set to WordPress: In Post Loop

  • Entire page properly renders properly on desktop and mobile when connected to a Test Blog


Additional Standards

Your design should be tested on Desktop and Mobile devices before it's released.

Designers submitting to the Design Market must also test their designs on a test blog (provided by Showit). This ensures that the WordPress Placeholders used in the blog templates correctly render with live blog content.

  • There are no apparent issues that should have been caught under basic testing (including blog layouts)


That's a snapshot of our Design Market standards.  

*Standards may change at any time.  Showit may make additional change requests based upon new standards or unique designs that may cause user issues.

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