Extra Theme Review 2017 – Best Drag & Drop Magazine WordPress Theme
Taking a break after launching the much-appreciated Divi theme, Elegant themes is back with another powerful WordPress theme.
Extra, is the latest offering from the guys at elegant themes. It has been created for bloggers and online publications that want an easy to navigate site with a sharper focus on content.
If you are currently building a magazine style blog or new website then Extra might be just the right thing for you. In this review, we will look at the intricate features that Extra has to offer and make whether it is really a great offering or not.
The Essentials: Features of the Extra WordPress Theme
To get access to Extra theme, you must be a member of the Elegant Themes Club. The membership costs you $69 and allows complete access to 86 other themes. If you pay $20 extra you get an extra load of plugins like Bloom, Monarch and Divi Builder, which help you in creating a stellar online portal.
Design and Layout
This is one of the most noticeable features of the Extra theme. This theme is designed for people like bloggers and content publishers who are looking to give out a lot of content on a regular basis. The main goal behind the Extra theme is keep the content in prime focus.
There are a lot of options available for publishing long-form content on your website. You can use the standard editor, which is one notch above the WordPress editor. This enables you to combine a range of elements, layouts and effects to create the best content possible.
I like this feature as it allows me to strategize my content in ways by which it can connect more effectively with my readers. There are also lots of options to consider for creating homepages and category pages. The style and features are supported by inbuilt customization options that allow you publish content that entices traffic.
What I mean is that you get to leave your unique imprint on each post.
With umpteen additional features the theme allows readers to navigate easily and freely on your website. This way they discover more of your content offerings and head on to become loyal subscribers of your blog/website.
Customized Widgets and Locations across the theme
The theme comes with a generous package of widgets that help your visitors find more of your content. These widgets can easily be used at all the supported areas of the themes.
The Extra theme allows widgets at following locations:
- Main Sidebar
- Product Sidebar
- Footer Sidebar Left
- Footer Sidebar Middle
- Footer Sidebar Right
You can also create your own custom widget areas and then choose what widgets to display in those sections.
You can display the following elements across the widgets spread on your website
- Front-end login forms
- List of authors
- Recent posts
- Recent tweets
- Recent comments
- Recent reviews
- Recent videos
- Social Network Stats etc.
Some widgets that you find might just be replacements over standard WordPress widgets but they do add come functionality to the theme overall.
Publish professional reviews with the review builder tool!
Reviews are a great way to build genuine audience. If you write or plan to write product reviews on your blog or website then the review builder tool offered by the Extra theme will interest you.
You can find the tool at the end of the post editor screen as the Review Box. You just have to fill in certain fields like ratings and schema tags and lo, your professional review is ready with a star rating and summary. You can also show percentage scores.
When you publish the review, the readers will see the summary at the end of the post along with individual score breakdowns.
Another interesting feature of the review builder is the progress bar. This means that the overall score will be displayed aesthetically on the featured image of the review post. You can also enable user ratings for any of the posts that you’ve published. This increases the interaction of the users with your content and increases the overall engagement on your site. Your readers can easily leave feedback and thus you get honest reviews with user opinion on your website.
Usually, one has to use separate premium plugins to use this but with the extra theme, you can do it on the go!
One of the few themes which supports all WordPress Post formats
Post formats are a relatively less used feature of WordPress. This has happened because many themes in use do not suppose these formats. The Extra theme is one of the few one that supports all the major post formats. You can use the standard blog post, video posts, audio posts, quotes, galleries and link formats.
The function depends on the format that you select. You can choose any from the WordPress post editor and the corresponding input box will be displayed so that you can star filling in the details. After you hit publish, the content will take the format according the chosen setting. This way you can quickly build posts across a wide range using pre-built layouts.
Create Custom Home and Category Pages from Scratch
With Extra theme, you can easily create custom homepages and category pages. With most other WordPress themes, you get to simply list your recent posts on the homepage or show all posts in a standard archive format. With Extra themes, category builder, you get an access to a visual interface where you can see how these posts are displayed.
You use the category builder tool, which uses the features of the Divi builder plugin for designing custom layouts. These will then be used to display the feed of posts from a specific category.
You can create a new custom layout and then easily apply them to all your categories thus, change the look and feel of your blog in the course of minutes. If you want to design category pages specifically, you can do that too! You can easily create separate category layouts and assign them to individual categories.
You can add multiple modules to your category layouts such as:
- Featured post sliders
- Multiple blog feed layouts
- Post carousels
- Custom does
The possibilities of unique designs and layouts for your website are numerous with the Extra theme
Most plugins are not always 100% effective when it comes to delivering the expected results. Therefore, trying the Category builder inbuilt tool is a worthwhile option.
Customizable Page Layouts
The theme comes with eight in-built page layouts. These include purpose built layouts for:
- Author page
- Blog Feed
- Portfolio pages and more
If you have a team of writers and creative professional that regularly post on your blog then you should give this theme a try as the custom author page layout will do a great job at highlighting your team.
You can also easily load the themes and pre-built modules available on Divi. Why you should do that is because they contain layouts that cover a wide range of uses like sales pages, landing pages, coming soon templates, shop layouts, multiple home page layouts and more.
You can customize each of these layouts with the Divi Builder tool and explore your imagination for the best results.
So, we have gone through the highlights about the Extra theme for WordPress. But that’s not all, which it has to offer. The more you use it, the more features you will find.
With the Divi builder you can create customized layouts and furnish them with useful modules. The theme has its own customization options. You can use the WordPress Live Customizer tool to personalize your website including the headers and footers.
If you delve deep into customization you will also find tools that allow you to edit any of the modules included in the themes and also those that you get from Divi Builder.
So, all in all, The Extra Theme sure does have loads to offer!
The In-built Divi Builder Plugin
I will take a moment here and tell you about the Divi builder plugin which the guys are offering with the Extra theme. This means that you get access to a powerful page builder tool for creating custom layouts for your posts. With the tool you get over 40 customizable modules that can easily be inserted into your page layouts.
These modules replace multiple commercial plugins, which you otherwise need to purchase in order to generate the same effects. This is also welcome news for bloggers and publishers who don’t know anything about writing a single line of code. Now with the Divi Builder Plugin built in the Extra theme, you can create customized post layouts and designs without ever touching a line of code.
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I think Extra is one of the best themes to have come into existence in recent times. It is perfect for content oriented blogs, websites and publishing platforms. You can easily create portals that attract relevant traffic and increase the overall online activity on your blog.
With a strong design and layouts, the theme offers high quality features and in-built tools, which make it very flexible and extremely customizable. The integrated Divi builder plugin can be used to create custom layouts and posts and works wonders when it comes to long-form content.
I find the category builder tool as the most impressive offering. Which one is your favorite feature? Let me know in the comments!
I like this feature because, bloggers generally deal in multiple categories and now we have a tool that can easily help us to create category layouts and designs without writing a line of code.
You can access the theme after taking the $69 membership of the Elegant Themes Club. If you want access to the Bloom Plugin (also the email optin) and other lush features that elegant themes offer then you should go for the $89 plan.
I guess with the whole stock of offerings, the price is very reasonable and a once in a lifetime opportunity. What do you say?