Get ready for your once-in-three-weeks dose of updates to Thrive Themes software!
This release is a little smaller than our average, but not without a few great new features we think you're going to love.
If you're wondering why this release is smaller than usual, it's because our team are hard at work on some major updates to one of our plugins...
More details are at the end of this post.
But for now, read on to see what we've just added to your WordPress website building software.
1. Visual Quiz Question Editing in Thrive Quiz Builder
If you haven't heard the buzz around Thrive Quiz Builder, then here's a summary:
Quizzes are known to be one of the highest-converting mailing list growth hacks ever and Thrive Quiz Builder lets you build and embed addictive, sharable quizzes on your site.
For a long time, we've seen requests for visually editing the colors and fonts of Quiz Questions.
You've always been able to edit the Splash Page, Opt-In Gate and the Results Page but now we are pleased to announce Version 1 of the Visual Question editor.
How to visually style your quiz questions:
When you build a quiz, you can choose from 6 pre-made quiz styles. The visual question editor is currently only available on the style called Minimalist.
Be sure to pick this one here:
Once you have the Minimalist style selected, you'll notice in your settings panel that a new 'Edit Design' button is visible right underneath the style preview.
As the name suggests, this will open up the Thrive editor and you'll find new quiz elements waiting for you on the canvas.
Keep in mind that you are editing the styling, not the content - much like editing a template. The question text, question description and answer text will be updated with the questions that your visitor's are answering.
As there can be a multitude of quiz question variations (such as video questions, audio questions, text questions, long form answers, multiple choice answers and more) we've kept it simple: One template that applies to all question formats.
In a few clicks you can change the Smart Color that applies to your questions, change layouts and change the typography of your question text, descriptions and answers.
As a quick example, I spent 5 minutes making some changes from the quiz interface above to apply the Montserrat font, and orange and charcoal brand colors. This was the result.
2. New GDPR Checkbox Form Field
GDPR stands for 'Global Data Protection Regulation' and was an overwhelming 261-page document that went into effect on May 25th, 2018.
That document set in motion new standards for data protection on websites, particular concerning European citizens.
It also led to a lot paranoia.
In response to that, Shane published one of the most sensible interpretations of GDPR you'll find on the internet, and you can read it here:
The general idea is that to be GDPR compliant, your visitors must know how you are going to use their data and must agree to those uses. No shady bait-and-switch growth hacks to harvest your data.
At the time GDPR was announced, we created an Explicit Consent checkbox that you can add to your lead generations forms to be 100% sure your visitors know what they are signing up for.
This week, we significantly improved the checkbox by releasing a brand new GDPR Checkbox field type.
How to use the new GDPR checkbox field:
Although it looks like a regular checkbox, the GDPR checkbox functions differently. It will alter the behavior of your form depending on whether or not it is checked by your visitors.
A common example will be if you have a contact form that also subscribes a user to a mailing list.
To do this, you would create two connections on the one form.
In this case, the first connection called Email is going to send an email from your website to your own inbox (or whoever you nominate) with the information your visitor has provided.
This is perfect for contact forms, application forms, quote forms, etc.
The second connection is an Email Autoresponder API. In my case I'm using Active Campaign. This would be the mailing list you use primarily for marketing, where subscribers may begin to receive an automated email sequence along with other marketing updates straight to their inbox.
With these two connections active on your form, take look at what becomes visible in the GDPR checkbox settings:
Here I can now choose to disable/enable different connections based on whether or not my visitor has checked the checkbox.
If they agree and check the checkbox, all connections will run.
If they do not agree and don't check the checkbox, you can nominate which connections will still fire and which ones won't when the form is submitted.
An obvious choice is to still receive the Email with the visitor's message from the contact form, but block the connection to Active Campaign. That means the contact form email is still sent, but the visitor will not be subscribed to the mailing list unless they give explicit consent.
The more API connections you setup on the one form, the more options you'll have inside the GDPR checkbox settings.
You are also able to pass some text to a custom field if a visitor checks the checkbox, meaning you can easily store a notice of their permission on the mailing list contact record.
It works like magic!
You can access your Global fields under Thrive Dashboard >> Smart Site.
Of course you can manually add any of your Global fields anywhere on your site or to other checkboxes just by clicking the dynamic text button in your typography bar.
For those of you who used our previous Explicit Consent checkboxes, you'll love the new GDPR field type as it let's you customize the size, color and design of your checkbox too.
"Why can't I have 2 GDPR checkboxes?"
You can only add one GDPR checkbox to a form. This is because that one checkbox will modify your API connections, so adding two would cause technical mayhem.
However, for the extremely privacy-conscious, you might want a checkbox for your Terms and Conditions, and another for explicit consent to join your mailing list.
In this case, just add a regular checkbox element with a single value and set it to 'required'. This will block the form from being submitted until it's checked. Then use the GDPR checkbox to filter your API connections based on what your visitor agrees to.
Confused by GDPR?
Don't panic. Read Shane's sensible post about GDPR here and I'm sure you'll realize it's not all doom and gloom.
3. Dropdown - Manage Multiple Options
A few months ago, we added a flexible Dropdown field type to our Lead Generation forms, and it looks like this:
Dropdowns (aka: Selects) are a convenient way to present a long list of options to your users without cluttering your forms.
However, getting lots and lots of options in there would be quite tedious. You'd have to click this [+] sign again... and again... and again...
We have an easier solution: Use the new Manage Multiple Options tab!
While in edit mode on a form, select your Dropdown and look for the new tab at the bottom of the Main Options panel.
When you open this tab, you'll see a text box with your existing Dropdown options listed. Simply change the values, click apply and you're done!
As an example, let's say you want your visitors to select which country they are from. Rather than manually adding every single country, just copy and paste a text list (one value per line) into the text box like this:
Just like that you've added 200+ values to your dropdown and you'll see the changes right there on the canvas:
The multiple options area also supports comma-separated-pairs in the format: "Option A, Value A".
That means that where a comma exists on a single row, the text to the left of it will become the option your visitors can choose from the dropdown and the text to the right will be the value that will be sent to your email or custom field when the form is submitted.
In the example below, your visitors will choose the currency name in the dropdown but the 3-letter currency code is what will actually be submitted through your form.
They pick 'US Dollar' but your autoresponder or email will see 'USD'.
(P.S.: Looking to ask what country your visitor is in? Here is a list of countries you can copy paste right into the multiple options manager.)
4. Thrive Theme Builder: Top and Bottom Sections Added to Landing Pages
Thrive Theme Builder lets you customize and edit every part of your website's theme templates, including what we call Top and Bottom sections.
The Top section sits underneath your website header but above the page content. It's your above-the-fold, seen be every visitor, and it's prime real estate for branding, adverts, offers, lead generation and calls-to-action.
The bottom section is above your footer, a perfect place for a sign-off or a final call-to-action after visitors have scrolled to the end of your content.
But there's a catch:
When you transform a webpage into a Landing Page in Thrive Architect, you overwrite your theme template.
This allows your landing pages to have unique colors, fonts and designs to the rest of your site, existing as sub-branded pages or funnels. But you lose access to those Top and Bottom sections.
As you see in the image below, you only have a header and a footer surrounding the page content area.
In our latest release, we've added Top and Bottom sections to Landing Pages built in Thrive Architect when your website has Thrive Theme Builder active!
You'll notice your landing pages now have these 2 new areas available.
Now when you're editing a landing page while Thrive Theme Builder is active, you can click the eye icon next to that section and immediately the sections gallery will open.
From here, you can load any of our designer-made top and bottom sections from the ShapeShift template set, or you can load the saved sections that you are using elsewhere on your website.
5. Improved Columns
When it comes to building a responsive website that looks great at all screen sizes, nailing your columns becomes very important.
For this reason, we've made some improvements to our columns element so they are easier to manage.
Resetting column widths
Once you drop some columns on your page and start altering their widths, it can be challenging to get them back to their original settings. We've added a Reset Column Layout button in the sidebar when you have the parent columns element selected.
Depending on how many columns exist inside the parent element, you'll be able to pick from a new layout.
If you have 5 or more columns, this button will reset them to even widths. Any less than 5 and a small dropdown of column layouts will appear.
Set column breakpoint for wrapped columns
The columns element has a toggle for 'wrap'. This setting means that your columns will stack vertically if there isn't enough space to fit side by side. (Note: Wrap can be enabled/ disabled per screen size so you can customize responsive appearances).
We've modified a slider to go with it, now called 'Column breakpoint'.
Column breakpoint will show when Wrap is enabled and it lets you set the maximum width a column can be reduced to before it will stack vertically instead.
Use this setting to make sure your columns don't look squashed on smaller screen sizes.
Finer width adjustments per column
Each Column inside a Columns element can be individually selected. When you do, you'll have greater control over the width from the sidebar.
You can still drag the column width right there on the canvas (except when Wrap is enabled as that locks column percentages), but now you can type in a value into the input box to set it to the exact % or pixel width you need.
6. New Custom Menu Templates
The Custom Menu element in Thrive Architect and Thrive Theme Builder is the backbone of your website navigation, and our design team have just added lots of new menu templates for you.
These templates are made with an emphasis on simplicity and clarity, and utilize some of our newer features such as split menu with logo and our always-improving Smart Color technology.
Try them out! They'll inherit your smart colors and your website logo and should look great right out of the box. There are also some new designs for use on dark backgrounds.
7. Auto 'Reply-To' Header in Emails
Earlier this year, the Lead Generation element was given all the features to make it a fully-fledged contact form element too.
That includes the ability to send a contact email to a chosen email address with form data submitted by your visitors, the interface for which looks like this:
We heard from your feedback that you want the visitor's email address to be automatically set as the reply-to header on those emails in your inbox. So that's exactly what we've done!
What does that mean?
It means when a contact form email arrives in your inbox, you can simply hit 'reply' and know that your reply email will be sent to the visitor that filled out your form, making it incredibly easy to start email correspondence with your new leads.
Note: Not all 3rd party transactional email services support reply-to headers. For those that don't, you'll still need to manually choose the email address you'd like to reply to.
8. Block YouTube Cookies
YouTube is the easiest platform to use for social video marketing. We use it for the videos that we want people to discover, whereas we recommend using Wistia or Vimeo for the videos you want to keep private.
For video marketers, that's not as sinister as it sounds. In fact, it can be a good thing.
However, for the privacy-conscious out there, you might want to use YouTube videos without giving data to Google. Now you can Disable YouTube Cookies.
Under the advanced settings of the Video element in Thrive Architect, you'll find a toggle to Disable YouTube Cookies.
Enabling this toggle will load from a non-cookied version of YouTube's hosting, a service provided by YouTube for users that aren't comfortable with the amount of data YouTube collects.
Header Scroll States: Minor Adjustments
We've also made a few small adjustments to the Header Scroll State feature we released last month, which allows you to create an effect like this:
- 1Different Header Sizes and Layouts: We previously locked the size of the 'On Scroll' state of the header, meaning that it had to match the 'On Load' state. This was due to a restriction on the fade animation, which we have now solved. This means your 'On Load' and 'On Scroll' headers can be completely different sizes and layouts now.
- 2Instant State Switching: We have now set the transition minimum to 1px. This means your website header can change to the second state the moment your visitors start scrolling down the page. Of course you can set that number higher so the visitor has to scroll further before the transition occurs.
What Are We Working On Next?
You may have heard through the grapevine that we are planning to work on Thrive Apprentice.
It's 100% true.
Thrive Apprentice is our online course creation plugin for WordPress.
We love it, and for years we've wanted to do so much more with Thrive Apprentice, to really transform the experience of building your online courses, managing your students and optimizing your info-product business.
But now we aren't just planning to make those changes... they've already begun.
Our product team and developers are hard at work on Thrive Apprentice. Some of our releases may be a bit smaller in the meantime but only because there's a lot happening behind the scenes that we aren't able to show you.
Also coming soon: more updates to our integration with WooCommerce.
Stay tuned, and as always- drop us a comment below with your thoughts and feature requests!