Theme Selection like Edublogs

Hello guys from WPMU DEV, I'm new to multi-site but already fall in love for it, and YOU are THE MULTI-SITE HEROES :slight_smile:
...so here am I…
...Now, let's get to business.

I'm trying to understand/figure it out how to make a website with a collection of themes that the user can select once they are in the site from a multisite installation just like Edublogs.

Here is what I want to accomplish:
- Create a platform (will use wordpress multi-site) for a niche, in this case, Coach (I'll expand to other areas later on)

- It will be a subscription based and I will use Pro Sites to manage the network.

-I want the user to be able to choose a design when they sign-up that most fit their needs but also allow them to choose a different one later on (I'm using New Blog Templates and making an entire website the way I want it to be)

Right now I created 2 Blog Templates on my network. I designed the way in that the user will only need to change some images (their profile, logo etc) and adapt the text to fit their needs. (in short, the user will spend little time and effort to have their site up and running)

I want that every Blog Template I made to also be available as a theme in Appearance > Themes. (I want to use your plugin Multisite Theme Manager to better display the themes)

How would be the best approach for me to be able to do this?
Which plugins do you reccomend?
Will I need to make Child Themes?

I hit a wall and don’t know how to proceed and your guidance will be very welcomed.

Thank you.

Regards,
Fernando.

  • Kasia Swiderska

    Hello Fernando,

    Looks like you already have everything covered with plugins (Pro Sites, New Blog Templates Multisite Theme Manager).

    I want that every Blog Template I made to also be available as a theme in Appearance > Themes.

    You can't give whole Blog Templates to change to users after they setup their blog. New Blog template is whole site (theme, plugins, settings - content).
    But you can offer them a Themes - themes you want to give them have to be Network activated (only then themes are available for subsites).

    Will I need to make Child Themes?

    That depends. Are you tweaking code of the themes you have? If yes, then you have to have child themes so you can safely update them without risk of loosing your changes. If you are not changing the code, then there is no need to use child themes.

    kind regards,
    Kasia

    • Fernando

      Hello Kasia, thanks for answering me.

      I understand, so In terms of plugins, I'm ok...

      About themes, I don't tweak the code, just make the design using elementor page builder.
      I referred to child theme because this way I only need to install one theme, in my case Astra theme.

      Correct me if I'm wrong, but if I create child themes I can use one child theme to style the way I want, lets call it Design 1, then create another child theme and style the other way I want, let's call it Design 2, and so on, until I have a selection of themes the user can choose. Is that right?

      Would this approach work? If so, it would be easier to manage themes also since, as far I know, only the core theme will need to be updated.

      Regards,
      Fernando.

  • Kasia Swiderska

    Hello Fernando,

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but if I create child themes I can use one child theme to style the way I want, lets call it Design 1, then create another child theme and style the other way I want, let's call it Design 2, and so on, until I have a selection of themes the user can choose. Is that right?

    If that styling is done with code (CSS) then yes, it is correct. Then using child themes will make sense and will allow you to give different styles of theme.

    However is you are going to prepare those designs in page Builder (no code, just using settings of the builder) you don't need child themes - those settings are saved to database.
    So when you will use New Blog Templates you will design those looks in separate subsites and then setup them as templates that your members will be able to select during registration.

    But this will not work after site creation (blog templates are only avaliable for creating new sites) and because Elementor saves changes to database, to specific tables for site (and not to files ) it's not possible to create child themes with your changes.

    I checked Elementor and seems that they have option to export templates and then import to another project http://techsini.com/export-import-elementor-template-reuse-projects/ - that might be option - that you would offer those templates for users - however for this templates we don't have any integration.

    kind regards,
    Kasia

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