As I mentioned in the last article, our focus is currently more on the theme level again. We are working on a number of new themes, all of which should be released in 2020. I call them our second generation of WordPress Themes 🙂
The first generation (MVT)
At the start of GermanThemes my main focus was clearly on our blocks. The development of these simply took a lot of time.
The themes on the other hand were very slimmed down. It was better to offer relatively simple designs first. This left more time for other things for the launch and we could see from the feedback which features were really needed.
Furthermore, the future of Themes with Gutenberg was still very unclear. You can read all my thoughts on this approach in my article on Minimum Viable Themes.
Almost a year has passed since then.
Our new GT Ambition theme is active on over 1,000 websites, our GT Blocks come to over 500 active installations. I received a lot of feedback and requests from users, which was very helpful. Many thanks for that!
Some suggestions have already been incorporated into the existing themes with updates in recent months, including support for comments, sidebar widgets in the blog and the display of tags. Extra settings for posts are now also available in the customizer.
Conclusion: Most users appreciate simple themes without a thousand options, but my interpretation was too minimal. Many basic functions were missing.
The second generation of WordPress Themes
After upgrading features for the current themes, there will of course be new designs again. These will now be more complex by nature and include more features and options.
Especially the header area will be more extensive in some themes and will not only support logo and navigation. I’m thinking about additional menus, social icons and search function. Also the blog area and the post view were designed very rudimentary in the first themes and shall now be given more attention.
In addition, the new themes should not only better support our own blocks, but also the core blocks. For this purpose, for example, different block styles and variants are conceivable, which themes can offer for the core blocks.
I hope, and the plan is very ambitious, to release a new design about every two months, so 5-6 themes this year. We’ll see if that works out.
And the third generation?
And yes, there will also be a next and final generation.
Since the beginning of the year, the Gutenberg Project has been working intensively on so-called Block-Based WordPress Themes. These are themes, which consist completely of blocks and instead of PHP templates they contain block templates in the form of HTML files. As a result, full site editing should be possible in Gutenberg.
It is a complete paradigm shift. The customizer will probably no longer exist in this concept, and child themes may also be dropped.
The whole thing is still in its infancy, we will see what remains.
I am following the development very closely and have already developed a first, experimental theme from blocks. GermanThemes will definitely be at the forefront here and use the new possibilities.
Until then, we will release new, traditional WordPress themes!