First Look at Our Upcoming Theme Builder…
It's finally here! In today's video, you get a first look at the new, fully visual theme builder we've been feverishly working on. And there's more information about how you can be among the first to get your hands on it.
What We're Working On
What you see in the preview video is a first look at a new product we've been working on behind the scenes for a long time. It will be a completely new product that replaces your WordPress theme. Although the editor in the video looks like Thrive Architect, this is not Thrive Architect. This is a theme, not a plugin and it's a separate product, not a feature added to Thrive Architect.
The builder looks similar simply because we don't want you to have to learn two different user interfaces to edit your theme and your pages.
There are several reasons why we're building this as a theme. The primary one is that WordPress is built to operate with a theme as the basis and in fact, it can't run without one. Loading a theme only to override most or all of that theme with a Thrive Architect components wouldn't be ideal.
The end goal in what we're building is to bring instant, truly visual front end editing to your whole website. To start, you'll be able to customize your page templates and dynamic content. We will then add custom post types and support for popular plugins like WooCommerce.
Eventually, the new theme builder + Thrive Architect will provide you with everything you need to build and edit every aspect of your website.
What's the Difference Between Thrive Architect and the Theme Builder
If both of these tools offer front end, visual, instant editing, what exactly is the difference? In other words, what's the difference between a content editor (Thrive Architect) and a visual theme builder?
The main difference is the level at which you build stuff. With Thrive Architect, you're building at the immediate, individual page level. Changes you make affect the page you're looking at and there are generally no surprises.
With the theme builder, you're working on a more abstract layer. The layout you're looking at in the editor may be a layout that is used on hundreds of pages on your site and the changes you're making affect all of them. And you can use dynamic content, which means you aren't editing specific words or images on the page, but placeholders which basically say "grab the featured image and put it here, get the title and put it here". So each individual page or post will have different content.
How Much Do You Have to Worry About Technical Details?
If the above sounds a bit confusing to you, don't worry: most users don't have to be concerned with the technical details. As always in our products, we will make pre-designed, ready-to-use templates available for you.
You'll be able to pick a template that matches your needs, install it on the theme builder and make it perfect for you with a few simple tweaks and edits.
The kind of visual customization we're building is powerful on two levels:
- For advanced users, it means you can be fully creative and build anything you want.
- For beginner users, it's very simple. You don't have to dig through menus. If you want to change what something looks like, you just open the editor, click on the thing you want to change and make some edits.
That's the beauty of true front end editing.
The Beta Version
We now have enough of this product built and a clear enough plan to announce a release date for the beta version: July 25.
Here's what you need to know about it:
What is this Beta Version?
This will be a first usable version of the new theme builder. It will have all of the basic features needed for a theme and the dynamic content and page template editing, as shown in the video.
What it won't have is all the integrations, bells and whistles and refinement for a full, live website. This will be a version that's not suited for deployment on live sites yet.
What Comes Next?
The goal of the beta testing is to get enough feedback to make the theme builder solid and stable as quickly as possible. We also plan to add some more features and functionality before a public release.
At this point, we don't have a date for stable beta or a public release yet, but we'll keep you updated as we continue development.
How Can You Get the Beta Version?
The beta version will be available to Thrive Themes Members only. If you are a member, make sure you're logged into your account and click the link below:
If you qualify, you'll be approved and invited to join our beta testing group in a couple of days. You'll get an email notification on July 25, when the beta version of the theme builder is available.
Whether you help us with the beta testing or not, I'd love to hear your feedback! What are your thoughts on the preview you saw in this video? What do you think of the concept and the plans we have for the theme builder?
Let us know by leaving a comment below!