We currently offer a few Weebly magazine themes -- and plan to develop more in the future -- but are often asked, "What's the difference between them?"
In this particular post, we're going to look at the main differences between our most popular Weebly magazine themes, Solar and Skyscraper.
The Core Difference Between Solar and Skyscraper
The main difference between Solar and Skyscraper is that Solar is an automated Weebly theme and Skyscraper is a manual Weebly theme.
Both Solar and Skyscraper come with a "header" and "no header" page layout, but in addition, Solar comes with an exclusive "solar" page layout and Skyscraper comes with an exclusive "skyscraper" page layout.
This additional exclusive page layout that both of these themes come with are the magazine layout. This is the page layout you're seeing when you view the homepage of each theme's demo site (Solar's demo site and Skyscraper's demo site).
Since Solar is an automated theme, its "solar" page layout automatically pulls in content from a Weebly "Blog" page and displays it on the "solar" page layout.
Since Skyscraper is a manual theme, its "skyscraper" page layout allows you to manually control what and where content from a Weebly "Blog" page appears on the "skyscraper" page layout.
Solar's "Blog Automation Setup" tells the "solar" magazine page layout where on you blog page to pull content from.
Skyscraper's allows you to manually add images and text to the "skyscraper" magazine page layout for complete content control and management.
Why Create Both of these Theme Types?
Because there is a need for both types of themes from our theme users.
Some people want to "set it and forget it", so they choose an automated Weebly theme such as Solar.
On the other hand, some people want complete control over what and where content will appear on their site, so they choose a manual input theme such as Skyscraper.
Which Theme Is Better for My site?
If you're looking for a Weebly magazine theme that operates similar to a Wordpress theme, in that your blog posts will automatically be display in a magazine layout, consider Solar.
If you're looking for a Weebly magazine theme that allows you to completely control what and where content from a blog post appears, then consider Skyscraper.
Over the past few months, we've been hard at work developing features and functions for our Weebly themes. These features include a recommended content widget, a most popular blog post widget, number blog pagination, and more.
Oh, yeah -- you can get all of these new Weebly features and functions in our latest Weebly blog theme, Kiss.
Our Next Generation Theme is here!
Kiss is a Weebly blog theme built on our latest T3 platform.
When building Kiss, we looked to our older Weebly themes. We took what our clients liked or didn't like about them, and built Kiss on this experience.
The theme is incredibly easy to use. All of our Weebly themes are incredibly easy to use, but Kiss goes a step further in being a smart theme. In being smart, this means the theme requires absolutely no input or code modifications from you as the user for it to work.
For example, Kiss comes with a built-in recommended content widget, which show 3 random blog posts at the bottom of every blog post to keep visitors on your site.
The recommended content widget knows when the visitor is on the blog homepage or a blog post, and which blog is viewed (if you have multiple blog pages), so it fires accordingly.
We've Done The Impossible
Who says you can't get a "Most Popular" blog posts widget in Weebly? Not us because our Weebly theme Kiss comes with one built it.
During our development, we came up with some really cool features and functions that every Weebly blog should have. Unfortunately, Weebly is (still) slacking in their blog feature department, so we responded accordingly.
Kiss comes with our newly innovated "Recent/Most Popular" blog posts widget, recommended content widget, and numbered blog pagination.
All of these features are paramount to a successful blog and they're now available to your Weebly blog for the taking.
What Is a Built-in Blog Post Search Function?
It's exactly what it spells. Kiss comes with the ability to search all of your blog posts because, why not?
Weebly hasn't always made it easy to navigation through a blog page, especially if that blog has made blog pages. In making blog navigation easier with our number blog pagination, we decided to develop a cool little blog post search function.
The moment you publish a new blog post, you can search for that blog post in the blog post search function.
The blog post search function searches just the titles of your blog posts. It does not search "Standard" Weebly pages.
Let's Change things Up a Bit
Maybe you're tired of the blog sidebar sitting on the right side of your blog page. So move it to the left with out "Blog Column Flip" theme option.
Keeping It Simple with Kiss
When we set out to build Kiss, our philosophy was to ensure that anyone could built an amazing looking and behaving website.
A lot of Weebly themes come with great features, but activating them or changing them up requires code modifications that can leave you feeling defeated. What use is such a theme if you can't get it to work correctly?
We promise you that Kiss is the easiest Weebly theme you'll ever use!
Whether you have 3 blog posts or 487 blog posts, just apply Kiss and be done. That's it! The theme is automatic and instantaneous in everything it does in order to allow you to focus on the content of your blog rather than the blog itself.
Looking at the image above, you're clearly looking at Instagram, right? Wrong! If you take a second look, you'd realize that you're actually looking at a Weebly theme -- our new Weebly theme Arksi.
Is that really a weebly theme?
It certainly is! As a Weebly theme developer, we like to push the boundaries of what a Weebly theme can do. We did this with our highly innovative magazine theme Solar last year.
Solar broke the mold by allowing you to aggregate your blog posts onto a single page, automatically. It was the Wordpress blog automation feature the Weebly community was looking for.
Arksi is no exception and has broken the mold in her own right. Not only does she carry our latest "automation" feature, but weilds many firsts for not just a THEMEZIER Weebly theme, but any and all Weebly themes.
Glad you asked! Arksi plans to impress you with her built-in "blog stats" feature that displays your blog's total posts, total pages, and total comments automatically.
In addition to built-in blog stats, Arksi is our first Weebly theme to use our long awaited "blog pagination" feature. No, not "<Previous" or "Next>", but actual pagination numbers.
Lastly, to showcase your blog's categories, a specially built "category slider" rests directly above your blog posts. It'll automatically display and link up to 7 blog categories.
As to be expected with our Weebly themes, activating these features is all done without touching a single line of code. How's that for innovatively simple?
She has the Diversity
Aside from a few of the innovative features above, Arksi comes with 4 built-in theme variations: Arksi, Instagram, Blue, and Dark.
Theme variations can be applied to a website by simply clicking on the desired variation under "Theme" at the top.
And yes, as you can see above, Arksi will come with a bunch of useful theme options, but we're keeping them a secret for now.
Who will benefit from Arksi?
Those who clearly have a blog-centric website would benefit most from Arksi's layout, but she also comes with "Header" and "No Header" page layouts like free Weebly themes, so you can simply use her "Standard" pages also.
Since Arksi is Instagram inspired, images are the focus of the layout, so artists and photographers might want to consider her for displaying and organizing their work.
Arksi is really for any website owner who'd prefer a clean and minimalist way of displaying content with incredible ease.
Give me arksi!
Believe us! We're as excited for Arksi's release as much as you are, but she's still in development status.
As for a release date, we can't be specific, but we're looking for an official release in our Weebly theme store within the next couple of weeks. You can keep an eye on Arksi's status by clicking on the "Coming Soon" tab in our theme store.
For more information on Arksi, or to recommend features for her while she's still in development, please feel free to comment below or reach out to us here!
Thank you for purchasing our Weebly theme Solar! This guide will help you install and setup Solar for first time use.
Step 1: Import Solar
Once you've downloaded Solar to your computer, you can upload it to your Weebly account by going to "Theme>Change Theme>Import Theme".
Once Solar has uploaded, scroll down to locate it and then click "Choose".
Note: If a prompt to change your theme appears, click "Confirm".
You'll be greeted with Solar's Blog Automation screen. You can deactivate this for now by going to "Theme>Change Options">Automation [Editor Only]".
Step 2: Create a home page
Note: Even if you already have a home page, you'll need to create a new one since Solar needs a blank page to automatically pull in your blog posts. You can hide your old home page for now.
Go to "Pages" at the top and click on the "+" icon. Then select "Standard Page", name it, and under "HEADER TYPE", select "Solar". Click "Done".
Step 3: Create a blog
Note: If you already have a blog with at least 3 categories, then you may skip to step 4.
Go to "Pages" at the top and click on the "+" icon. Then select "Blog Page", give it a name, and under "HEADER TYPE", select either "Header" or "No Header".
Now create 3 new blog posts -- they can be real or test posts. Make sure you apply a unique category to each of the 3 blog posts. Once your blog posts are published, publish the entire site as well.
Step 4: Setup Blog Automation
Go to "Theme>Theme Options>Automation [Editor Only]". Now put the URL of your blog and the URL of the 3 blog categories in the input boxes below.
For example, let's say our blog's url is "www.mysite.com/blog" and we created 3 blog categories called "blue", "yellow", and "green", the blog automation input boxes should be setup as shown below:
Publish the site and you should now see the blog posts on the home page of the live site. If you have any additional questions on Solar, please feel free to ask them below!
We get it. There are a lot of third-party companies offering incredible Weebly themes. So why should you try one of ours?
We could sit here and write a boring list of why WE think we're good, but instead, we'll just tell you how we do themes and ultimately let you decide.
THEMEZIER has been a part of the Weebly community since 2011. This means we've seen Weebly grow from its first generation UI, to the present day. We know Weebly really well and love it!
In fact, we love Weebly so much that we've built this site on Weebly. That's right, this is a Weebly site! That's how much we enjoy using Weebly and are confident in the platform.
Go ahead, the next time you purchase a Weebly theme, ask the creator what site building platform they used to sell you that theme. Just a thought.
If it's not obvious from our site's layout and design, we like to keep things simple; EZIER to use, if you catch our drift. But keeping things simple doesn't mean lacking innovation. Our themes are built around a simple principle of making your user experience as simple as possible, of which innovative theme features emanate from.
We don't provide instructions for working with our themes because we've built them to be as intuitive as possible. Building it intuitive the first time ensures not having to do so the second time. Sure, a question may arise, but you can always ask us and we'll be happy to help out.
While our theme building philosophy revolves around a simplistic principle, boy do we love to innovate. We innovated a lot of Weebly theme firsts such as automation, bread crumbs, notifications, and more -- all built into select themes and incredibly easy to operate.
And most importantly, once you purchase one of our themes, you're not on your own, but the complete opposite in fact -- you're part of the THEMEZIER family and we've got your site building back!
Surely it sounds, and may just be, cheesy -- oh, here comes the cheese -- but we love to build themes and we love Weebly. Helping people bring their visions for a website to reality is a truly rewarding satisfaction for us. It's almost addictive, in a way.