The simple answer is: there can't be a list of things that just make a design better.
Here's why, and a couple of tips on what you can do when you find yourself looking for such a thing.
Everything is case by case. The text indenting style you use in your example, for example, sometimes works well and can help make text more prominent by increasing contrast and creating a slight sense of depth. How much that improves a design depends on how much that element needs more prominence, and it comes at the slight cost of complicating the text element and adding noise to the page. Sometimes, that's a net benefit, sometimes, a net loss.
In your example, it's a net benefit because there are few competing elements and because the extra prominence and contrast counter-acts the downside of the texture underneath. The texture looks nice but has a downside that it competes a little with the text for foreground status, weakening the hierarchy and clarity of the page. The extra dash of prominence from the text shadow makes sure there's no serious competition, restoring a clear figure/ground relationship and hieratchy between text and background.
If an identical effect was used, say, against a flat background on a busy page, it would harm the design.
Anything that, today, seems to always look great anywhere will, tommorrow, be a horrible tired overused cliche. It's a really really common to see some stylistic trick, think "That looks great and fresh!", try it in some design of your own, think "This looks fresh here too!", then start habitually using it in places where it doesn't actually improve the design but doesn't obviously harm it, and raises a smile among friends/clients because it's reminiscent of those other things that look really good, and then - with hundreds of other people doing the same - that stylistic trick quickly becomes a tired cliche.
Any list of the stylistic tricks of 2012 that seem to always look cool, will almost certainly double up as a list of tired design cliches of 2013.
Here's an example of just this - Smashed Magazine, a popular online web design magazine, listing design "epidemics", many of which are things it itself recommended a few years previously as cool new stylistic tricks, which then got out of control and were over-used.
If a design doesn't satisfy, don't look for a stock trick that can be parachuted in.
Ask: why isn't it working? What's it lacking? Then ask: based on the specifics of this case, what can I do to fix that specific problem or need?
The closest thing I'm aware of to a good, universal, non-fashion-dependent reference you can turn to when stumped when looking for something to add a touch of something to a design that doesn't quite cut the mustard is the brilliant book Universal Principles of Design. It's unique in that it is a catalogue of things that work across design disciplines because of some evidence-based fact (standards of evidence vary...) about human perception / psychology or engineering etc, with an ingenious contents page listing them by type of design problem they can solve. But it's not easy to apply: they're very, very, very general principles and seeing how things like this can be applied is a very difficult art in itself.
Aside from that, there are literally hundreds/thousands of books, online magazines, dead tree magazines, blogs, showcase sites etc (links to random examples off the top of my head) that showcase design techniques and which people turn to for ideas.
Use them, don't abuse them. Have a reason for adding a stylistic or decorative trick that is based on your case and isn't just "it looks awesome somewhere else"