Our time with the brand new Pro.

In Design & UX, Websites, Wordpress by Sam Grantham

Here at Futr Digital, when it comes to building out new websites for our clients, we have a few focus points that allow us to improve the speed of development, and decrease the cost to clients, whilst maintaining a high level of customisable options.

One of these focal points for us is developing somewhat of a key specialisation in a WordPress framework, to ensure we are as clued up and knowledgeable as we can be on said framework, for the benefit of our clients and the growth of Futr. Over close to a decade I have been using X by the wonderful te

am at Themeco for the vast majority of sites I’ve built for many reasons, which I will likely go into in another blog post down the track, but a few key features per below:

  • One of the most popular WordPress themes on the planet.
  • One of the most customisable themes of all WordPress theme options.
  • Some of the best support across the board for themes.
  • One of the most streamlined and smooth design and development processes aligned with any theme in WordPress, utilising the Themeco built Cornerstone.
  • Seamless integration with a vast amount of high quality and super popular add-ons, plugins, and additional functionality.

X has, and will continue to be.. shall we say.. the ‘cornerstone’ of our boutique agency here at Futr. *ba-dum, ching!*

Then, as we continue to receive regular updates to X from Themeco, we noticed there was a bit of a longer delay between awesome upgrades. There wasn’t too much of a stress from my end, as I knew we were in very capable hands with the team at Themeco. After a bit more of a wait, an announcement was made by the team that a significant change was about to take place with X.. and that’s where I got super excited.

A few more months down the track, and we hit April 2017, and voilà, Pro was announced! Unbeknownst to the vast majority of X users, Themeco had not only upgraded ‘X’ as it stood, but had created a completely brand new, super-improved framework for WordPress that utilised much of the same functionality and approach as X, but with a bunch of new features. Essentially Pro is X on website steroids. And we’re feelin’ the pump!

The Key Improvement – Headers & Footers

Essentially, the heart of Pro is about introducing several new interconnected builders and advanced features. The header and footer builders give us unprecedented control over these very important parts of websites… the header and footer!

Instead of there just being some theme-type options to choose from, Themeco has developed inbuilt functionality to allow us to create almost any type of complex header or footer layout that we so desire – all within the Pro framework. This is a game changer. It basically gives us almost complete customisation functionality for headers and footers – without the necessity, time spent, and expense of ‘ground-up’ custom development.

Multi-sticky bars that interact with visitors on scroll events, flexbox layouts for footer columns that adjust constantly based on window size, interaction button animation, and more, and more. This type of functionality you usually only find on high-end, very expensive websites. Not anymore.

We’re now able to build out headers and footers in a very similar way, with very similar customisable options, that we have when building out website pages. This means an entire new library of Elements from navigation to buttons to toggles to off-canvas content and more.

We now have much more powerful native control over headers on footers using Flexbox controls – with the ability to manipulate each Element in a truly unlimited number of ways, you will quickly discover that Pro is not just a solution with new “features,” it is a digital canvas.

Other Pro Features
  • Font Manager – Quick, site-wide management of fonts. This will allow you to update font families and weights used throughout your site in one place.
  • Colour Manager – Same as fonts per above, but for various colour palettes that we’ll use throughout client’s sites
  • Section Dividers – These are used to create curved, or angled transitions from one page section to another. Super handy for look-and-feel purposes.
  • The Bar – A section within the framework that centralises all development options into one place. For increased efficiency.

Pro is unlike anything I have utilised before for website design and development. It feels like its the beginning of something a lot bigger that’s in the pipeline from Themeco.. think the new Header and Footer customisation options and functionality, but across the entire framework and site – Pages, Posts, Portfolio entries, eCommerce, and more..

I’m absolutely addicted to Pro now, and am furiously working through the new features to learn up and pass this increased knowledge and skill onto client’s websites moving forward.

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About the Author

Sam Grantham

Sam is the founder and director of Futr Digital, and has a keen interest in small business development in today's and tomorrow's world. Primarily focussing on developing the online footprint of businesses, and continually being prepared and on the front foot of ever-changing technologies.