Develop Storefront

The official Storefront development blog

Storefront 2.2.5 — August 21, 2017

Storefront 2.2.5

Storefront 2.2.5 has been tagged for release and uploaded to WordPress.org.

Here’s what’s changed pulled directly from the changelog:

  • New – Add access to submenus from touchscreen devices. Kudos @mikeyarce.
  • New – Add styles for keyboard navigation on focus items. Kudos @mikeyarce.
  • Fix – Fix hero image positioning when page has RTL direction.
  • Tweak – Remove non-minified vendor script: rgbaster.js.
  • Tweak – Enqueue non-minified versions of scripts when SCRIPT_DEBUG is defined.
  • Dev – New hook to filter sidebar regions: storefront_sidebar_args.
  • Dev – Adds grunt-contrib-compress to the build process.
  • Fix – Remove 4th parameter being passed to remove_action, it only accepts 3. Kudos @ashfame.
  • Fix – Limit product name cell to 300px in the order review table.
  • Fix – Check header cart contents length on mouseover to dynamically check if the height needs to be limited.
  • Tweak – Removed Structured Data. See this comment.
  • Fix – Header cart dropdown padding.
  • Fix – Updated demo store notice z-index value to 9999 to prevent conflicts with other elements. Kudos @iamdharmesh.
  • Tweak – Replace WooThemes with WooCommerce.
Storefront 2.2.4 — June 27, 2017

Storefront 2.2.4

Storefront 2.2.4 has been tagged for release and uploaded to WordPress.org.

Here’s what’s changed pulled directly from the changelog:

  • Fix – Notice styling in the payment section of the checkout.
  • Fix – Fix several typos in the theme description and customizer controls.
  • Fix – Remove :hover and :active states on .screen-reader-text.
  • Fix – Hide logo section from structured data if there’s no image.
  • Dev – New hook after body tag: storefront_before_site.
  • Fix – Fix modular scale negative values not being compiled correctly.
  • Tweak – Open documentation links in a new window.
  • Fix – Translatable labels in the 404 template.
  • Fix – Localize all aria labels.
  • Dev – Remove wp_kses_post() from shortcodes output.
  • Fix – Amend support link in admin header to link to the WordPress.org support forum.
Storefront 2.2.3 — June 1, 2017
Storefront 2.2.1 and 2.2.2 now available — May 23, 2017

Storefront 2.2.1 and 2.2.2 now available

Hey folks, after the excitement of the 2.2.0 release yesterday we were quickly made aware of a couple of bugs that made it through the beta test and have consequently released two small fix releases to address these issues. Thanks to everyone who brought these issues to our attention and our apologies for any disruption caused.

  • 2.2.1 fixes a fatal error folks were experiencing when running older versions of PHP.
  • 2.2.2 fixes issues folks were experiencing with our Starter Content implementation. Essentially some people were seeing the effects on that feature (widget and page template assignment) in existing sites which of course should not happen.

If you spot any other problems please do not hesitate to open an issue on github (with full details). We’ll investigate and release another fix if required.

I’d also like to remind anyone who hasn’t pushed the update button yet that 2.2 is a major release. To be 100% safe, we recommend that you always test major releases (whether it’s Storefront, WooCommerce, or any of our other products) in a non-production environment first. Or even better – participate on our pre-release beta tests.

Storefront 2.2.0 is now available to download — May 22, 2017

Storefront 2.2.0 is now available to download

storefront-2-2.png

Storefront 2.2.0 has just been tagged for release an uploaded to WordPress.org. That means it should be available to download very soon! This is a major release, you should not update live sites without adequate testing.

What’s in the box

Please read the previous post which includes all of the details of this release.

For the condensed version, here’s the relevant info pulled directly from the changelog;

  • New – Adding a featured image to the homepage template will now create a ‘hero’ component.
  • New – Improved new user experience; WooCommerce installation prompted and added starter content to set up the homepage template, menus, widgets and add some demo products.
  • New – Guided tour in the Customizer.
  • Fix – Remove unnecessary button styling in WooCommerce Quick View extension.
  • Fix – Only make the order review on checkout sticky of the address column is tall enough to make it worthwhile.
  • Tweak – Improved the Bookings calendar styles.
  • Tweak – :focus borders now dotted.
  • Tweak – Default header background color is now white and header text color defaults updated accordingly.
  • Tweak – Various typographical adjustments to match updated header design.
  • Dev – Added actions; storefront_jetpack_infinite_scroll_before, storefront_jetpack_infinite_scroll_after, storefront_jetpack_product_infinite_scroll_before and storefront_jetpack_product_infinite_scroll_after.
  • Dev – Added filters; storefront_footer_widget_rows and storefront_footer_widget_columns to easily control the number of widget rows / columns in the footer.
  • Dev – FontAwesome and icon styles are now enqueued separately to make removing FontAwesome trivial.
  • Dev – Updated FontAwesome to 4.7.0
  • Dev – Upsells columns filterable via storefront_upsells_columns.
  • Dev – Added a column wrapper to product loops. To adjust the layout you now only need to filter storefront_loop_columns.
  • Dev – Homepage product sections only display if products are returned.
  • Tweak – Escape background content color before output. Kudos @pdewouters.
  • Dev – Updated package versions. You’ll need to npm install next time you try to build.
  • Dev – Adds grunt-postcss + autoprefixer to the build process to reduce reliance on Bourbon.
  • Tweak – Doctype in lowercase. Kudos @B-07.
  • Fix – Only output background-image styles for the header and homepage content sections if an image exists.
  • Fix – Translatable aria labels in the homepage sections. Kudos @andreaskian.

Gimme

You can download Storefront now from your dashboard or from WordPress.org.

Updating

If you’re updating an existing store to Storefront 2.2.0, as mentioned previously; please test the update in a development environment first. If you are using any additional Storefront products (child themes and/or extensions) be sure to check for updates for them before updating Storefront and test everything in your development environment.

I’ll say it one more time; test the update(s) in a development environment. 🙂

I found a bug

If you find a bug then as always, please be sure to report it on github. If you have any other problems with Storefront please post on the WordPress.org support forum, or contact us if you’re a WooCommerce customer.

Storefront 2.2.0 beta 1 — May 8, 2017

Storefront 2.2.0 beta 1

I’m happy to announce that Storefront 2.2.0 beta 1 is now available. You can download it and begin testing by clicking here.

What’s changed in 2.2.0?

The focus of 2.2.0 was primarily to improve New User Experience. Making use of WordPress 4.7’s Starter Content feature, new Storefront users now benefit from a much richer experience when they first start using the theme. The improved NUX can be broken down in to three main additions;

WooCommerce installation and Customisation prompt

After activation Storefront will perform a quick check to see if WooCommerce is installed or not. If not, a prompt will be displayed asking you to do so via a single click. After which you’ll be guided through WooCommerce setup via the wizard that exists in core.

Screen Shot 2017-05-03 at 12.06.05

Of course, in most cases folks won’t see this prompt. Storefront is a WooCommerce theme and generally WooCommerce will already be activated. In those cases, users will instead be prompted to customise the look and feel in the Customizer.

Screen Shot 2017-05-03 at 12.15.17

Customizer guided tour & Starter Content

When the user enters the Customizer they will be greeted with a step by step guide to set up some of the core design options in Storefront.

Screen Shot 2017-05-03 at 12.18.54
Storefront 2.2.0 guided tour

Depending on whether the store is fresh or established, Starter content may be included. For brand new stores that means the following tasks will be performed automatically:

  • Example products imported
  • Homepage created, ‘homepage’ template applied and set as a ‘static homepage’ in WordPress settings
  • ‘Full width’ template applied to cart and checkout pages
  • Default widgets removed
Screen Shot 2017-05-03 at 12.22.12
Starter content in-situ

Revamped landing page in wp-admin

Once the user finishes customizing their store and returns to wp-admin they’ll be greeted with a revamped landing page. This landing page has been tidied up and now focuses on informing folks on how they can enhance their Storefront experience, either through free plugins, Storefront Powerpack or commercial child theme designs.

Screen Shot 2017-05-03 at 12.29.05

Design refresh

The other big change in 2.2.0 is a design refresh we’ve performed which lightens the overall aesthetic, gives more prominence to product photography and transforms the homepage content into a hero component.

screen-shot-2017-02-08-at-15-38-15

You can read more about the design refresh in this post.

Beta testing

If you’re using any Storefront extensions, plugins or child themes we thoroughly recommend that you check for updates available for those first and perform any that you find. Many of our own child themes for example have had patches to provide compatibility with 2.2.0.

If you’re keen to test the guided tour / starter content features then you’ll need to set up Storefront on a fresh installation of WordPress.

If you find issues we encourage you to open an issue on the Storefront github repository with a clear description.

The design refresh is the biggest change for existing users. Custom child theme authors / users will need to pay careful attention to this and potentially patch their own products.

Gimme!

You can download Storefront 2.2.0 beta 1 right here.

Storefront 2.1.8 — February 17, 2017

Storefront 2.1.8

Hey folks, Storefront 2.1.8 has been tagged for release and will be available to download from WordPress.org very soon.

2.1.8 is a tiny release that takes into account some tweaks made to WooCommerce core with regards to how themes declare support for the new gallery feature;

  • Tweak – [WooCommerce 2.7] – Declare support for the new gallery.

WooCommerce 2.7 is currently in beta and I’d encourage any users to give it a try before it’s released, in a staging environment.

Download at WordPress.org.

Storefront 2.2 design refresh — February 9, 2017

Storefront 2.2 design refresh

While the main focus of Storefront 2.2 is the new user experience, we also intend to make small adjustments that improve the overall design.

Homepage hero section

The first design change we’ve made is the treatment of the homepage content when using the homepage template included with Storefront. Currently, if you add a featured image to your homepage you’ll see something like this;

screen-shot-2017-02-08-at-15-39-13

Not particularly inspiring, huh?

From 2.2 onwards, adding a featured image to your homepage will automatically create a ‘hero’ component. The featured image will be used as a background and your homepage content will be overlaid on top of it. It’ll look something like this;

screen-shot-2017-02-08-at-15-38-15

New header colors

You’ll no doubt have noticed that the content section isn’t the only difference between the two screenshots above. The other noticeable change is the header colors.

All Storefront versions prior to 2.2 set the header background to a dark gray/blue color by default. We’ve decided to change this to white moving forwards. Here’s why;

Product priority

With such a vast contrast between the header / content background colors in 2.1 there is a lot of visual competition for attention, especially when pages first load. The eye is generally drawn to the header first. But seeing as the header is right at the top of the page it already occupies an appropriate place in the visual hierarchy and doesn’t need additional focus. In 2.2 we want product imagery to be the star of the show and making the header background white (to match the main content area) facilitates this.

User behaviour / logos

Generally speaking, logos are designed to be placed on lighter backgrounds. I’ve noticed a lot of Storefront users don’t always change the header background color straight away so this will provide a better experience in most cases when first adding a logo.

In fact, a lot of users don’t change the header background at all which suggests that many folks just want to install a theme and go, with minimal set-up shenanigans. Using a more appropriate default background color will improve the Storefront experience for many folks who exhibit those tendencies.

Typography tweaks

Adjusting the header background to be lighter revealed just how heavy our typography styles were. So, embracing the ‘make products images top dog’ mantra from before we’ve lightened font weights here and there. We’ve also adjusted button background defaults and a few typographic treatments when using the full width template. The overall result is a more streamlined / minimal aesthetic.

Below you can see before and after side-by-side:

sf2-2

Hopefully you’ll agree that the new design helps shift the visual focus squarely on to the most important thing at the store – the products!

Backwards compatibility

While the differences are quite visually striking, there’s not a huge difference in the code, so I hope that backwards compatibility won’t be a big issue. Of course, the new header background color will only be applied to existing stores if you’ve not already changed from the old default. The same goes for buttons. If you’ve customised Storefront it’s unlikely you’ll even notice any of the color changes.

The typographical changes can easily be reversed with a few lines of CSS to change the heading weights, if required.

If you’re doing something unique with the product content then the new hero component should be thoroughly tested before updating Storefront core.

When’s it due?

This is all a work in progress and we still have quite a bit to do. But we still hope to release at least a beta by the end of Q1. Stay tuned!

Storefront 2.1.7 — January 17, 2017

Storefront 2.1.7

Hey folks, Storefront 2.1.7 has been tagged for release and will be available to download from WordPress.org very soon.

2.1.7 is a small release that essentially just adds some compatibility tweaks to ensure everything will work smoothly when the next major WooCommerce (2.7) release is available;

  • Tweak – [WooCommerce 2.7] – Ensure all checkboxes function correctly with new markup.
  • Tweak – [WooCommerce 2.7] – Order item meta styling.
  • Tweak – [WooCommerce 2.7] – Don’t display the stock icon when .stock is empty.
  • Fix – Cross-sells layout.

WooCommerce 2.7 is currently in beta and I’d encourage any users to give it a try before it’s released, in a staging environment. But you can rest assured that as of 2.1.7 Storefront is fully prepared for WooCommerce 2.7.

Download at WordPress.org.

Storefront 2.2 planning — December 5, 2016

Storefront 2.2 planning

Hey folks! As you probably figured out, 2.2 will be the next major Storefront release. Last week we began fleshing out some features we’d like to include in the release as well as determining an overall ‘theme’ for 2.2.

Today I’m sharing some of those ideas so you can get an idea of how the release will shape up. This is also your opportunity to get involved! Let us know if you like our plans, or if there are any other features you’re desperate to see in Storefront.

Improving New User Experience

The main thing we decided to focus on in 2.2 is improving the new user experience (NUX). For those already familiar with Storefront this might not sound particularly exciting (sorry) but it should still prove useful when creating new stores.

You’re a wizard, Storefront

Each time you create a new Storefront site there are a number of tasks you have to perform. Things like adding widgets, creating the homepage, setting the static home page, adjusting the cart/checkout page template, adding a logo, tweaking colors, creating menus, importing dummy content… the list goes on.

Even Storefront veterans will agree this process is a pain. It should be possible to quickly and easily perform these tasks in one place, straight after activation. Kinda like a wizard.

So, we’re going to add a wizard.

Where it will live (Customizer vs wp-admin) and how it will look are tbd. But that’s besides the point, the end result will be the same; a really simple tool to get you up and running with Storefront in no time at all. For new users this will be extremely useful and for everyone else it should save a bunch of time setting up new sites! The wizard (who I’m calling Dumbledalf) preliminarily includes these steps;

  • Homepage setup (potentially with different layouts)
  • Branding stuff (logo upload, color specification)
  • Widget setup
  • Menu setup
  • Installation of extra features (Storefront feature plugins)
  • Dummy content import

We’re pretty happy with this list, but it may change between now and launch. If you have any suggestions please let us know!

Other features

The wizard will be the biggest feature in 2.2, but we also plan to add the following small features;

Footer widget rows

Web site footers seem to grow taller every year, especially on eCommerce web sites. While storefront provides 4 columns for footer widgets, there is only one row which can be organisationally troublesome.

In 2.2 we plan to add a filter that will allow you to specify any number of rows, effectively allowing you to create footers like this;

40808234-8cdc-11e6-8622-95b80791b5ae

We may expand upon this in Powerpack, including a footer builder much like the header builder.

Ensure the layout honors the storefront_loop_columns filter

Currently, if you filter storefront_loop_columns the first and last classes are changed as expected but the layout breaks. We’ll fix that so you no longer need to add a load of CSS just to tweak the columns products are arranged into.

CSS linting

We’ll add css linting to our grunt task. This will help highlight any issues in our CSS as well as potential areas for improvement.

Timescales

We plan to start work on development very soon with a planned release in Q1 2017. You can keep up to date with the latest progress on our master branch at github. Feel free to get involved as well! 🙂

As always, let us know what you think about the latest Storefront developments, we’re always keen to hear your feedback.