Blocksy theme

Blocksy Theme Review – Best WordPress Theme or Not?

Blocksy is an amazing theme which has both free and pro (premium) versions, this is why it is called a ‘freemium’ theme. It can be used to develop a beautiful website. If you’re a beginner in the realm of WordPress and looking for a free theme by which you can design a modest yet vibrant website that is super responsive and very much user friendly, you can try the Blocksy free version. The purpose of this article is to go through all the available features/aspects this theme offers to its clients and sometimes compare it with its competitors, thus trying to figure out the probable overall rating of the theme from a neutral user/client point of view.

Before we jump into the technical details and explore every nook and corner of this theme, we prefer to say a few words about the Blocksy theme, its background and also its current statistics. The theme was initially developed by two ‘workaholic friends’ (as they describe themselves) named Sergiu Radu and Andrei Glingeanu. They are basically software engineers. Sergiu Radu is from Moldova and Andrei Glingeanu is from Romania, both of which are European countries.

Blocksy theme authors
Caption : These are the braininess who developed the Blocksy theme

About Blocksy Theme

The theme was first launched on February 20, 2019. The current version of the theme is 1.8.5.4 (as of today, September 6, 2021). It has currently 30,000 active installations. By considering this number we can say it’s a moderately popular theme, which surely is not a measure of its quality. A probable measure of the theme’s quality could be the ratings/reviews it has received and its performance, which we’ll discuss afterwards. WordPress version 5.2 or higher supports the Blocksy theme. The required version of PHP is 7.0 or higher. WIth that said, let’s now get into the details in order to see whether or not Blocksy is the right theme for your website!

Pros Of Blocksy Theme

Every WordPress theme has its own good sides (also known as pros) and a few bad aspects/cons. As far as this is concerned, the Blocksy theme is no exception as well. The pros of the theme are as follows:

  1. The Blocksy theme is very easy to work with and it’s quite developer-friendly.
  2. It is easy to install. The number of the associated ‘must install’ plugins is not high compared to many other popular and much used themes. In this regard, we can call it a ‘simple yet efficient’ theme.
  3. The theme is pretty responsive while designing/customizing web pages and posts.
  4. It fully supports WordPress WooCommerce and major SEO plugins. However some WooCommerce features are available only in the pro version.
  5. A website built on the Blocksy theme can easily be search engine optimized.
  6. The free version of this theme offers some amazing features which can be obtained only in the pro versions of many other popular themes.
  7. You don’t need to install a third party page builder (like Elementor or Brizy) to work with Blocksy, because it’s quite compatible with WordPress’ own built in page builder, Gutenberg.
  8. The Blocksy theme is social media friendly.
  9. The average rating of the theme is 5 out of 5 stars till date, as we found on the WordPress official website. In order to see the ratings for yourself, please follow this link

Cons Of Blocksy Theme

  1. On the starter template level, the Blocksy theme hardly supports ‘Elementor’ which is a free page builder and also the most popular page builder of current time.
  2. Blocksy isn’t exactly a multi purpose theme, although the developers label it as one. The theme is actually specialized for blogs, though activities like WooCommerce can run pretty smoothly on this theme.
  3. Compared to other popular themes Blocksy has fewer features/options to implement on a webpage, even in the pro version.
  4. The theme has only thirteen starter templates which may not meet the expectations of a web developer.
  5. In some cases, the theme may fail to show any label/heading for the items added in the sidebar. That way the visitors will be confused about the purposes of certain items.
  6. We have experimented multiple times and thus have experienced that the time a webpage using the Blocksy theme takes to fully load is NOT exactly minimal. So the theme can’t be categorized as ‘lightning fast’, after all.

Blocksy Theme key Features

There are a number of reasons why you should choose and use Blocksy as the theme on your website. Here we present the key features this theme offers to the clients:

  1. Ultra Performance – Blocksy is a pretty fast WordPress theme.
  2. Fully Gutenberg ready – the theme supports the native Gutenberg page builder.
  3. Child Theme – Blocksy offers many child themes.
  4. The free version itself has a lot of features and options to choose from, by using which you can give your site a stunning look.
  5. This customization section of this theme is very functional and powerful: you can customize each element. 
  6. This theme can be used to build an ecommerce website as it fully supports WooCommerce plugins.
  7. The Blocksy theme is fully responsive and looks perfect on different screen sizes.
  8. Live search is available on it, so visitors can see live search results.

Blocksy Theme Ease of use

The installation and setup process of the Blocksy theme is pretty easy. When you’re on the Dashboard (AKA ‘back end’), you just need to go to the Appearance → Theme → Add new section and search for the Blocksy theme.

Upon clicking on Appearance → Themes link (marked by a rectangular box in the first of the above two images) you’ll have arrived on the themes page. Then You should click on the ‘Add New’ button. After doing that, you’ll arrive on the page shown in the above image. The search box is marked by a green arrow. As soon as you have typed ‘Blocksy’, WordPress will suggest and show the Blocksy theme alone. That’s because it’s a famous and much used theme worldwide. In order to install the theme you should click on the ‘Install’ button.

Install Blocksy theme

Once you’ve successfully installed and activated the Blocksy theme, you’ll be asked to install only the ‘Blocksy Companion’ plugin. You should install and activate that as well. Because this plugin allows you to access Demo Starter Templates, necessary Extensions and a lot of other stuff.

Blocksy theme

Blocksy Theme Customization

When you choose a theme for your site, you have to pay close attention to all the customization options the theme offers. If these options can meet your custom needs, only then you should go ahead and install the theme on your site. In this regard, we have done a detailed research on the Blocksy theme and found that it has covered all the necessary customization options and many other extraordinary features as well. When you’re on the backend or the dashboard of your site and click on Appearance → Customize, you’ll arrive on the customization page. Here you’ll see the following options available for you.

In the very first page of the Blocksy customization panel, there are a few main sections: ‘General Options’, ‘Post Types’, ‘WooCommerce’, ‘Extensions’ and ‘Core’. Now let’s see which section has how many tabs/subsections in it.

In the ‘General Options’ section there are General, Header, Footer, Sidebar, Colors, Typography and Performance tabs. The ‘Post Types’ section is divided into two subsections, namely ‘Blog Posts’ and ‘Pages’. There are two types of ‘Blog Posts’: ‘Single Posts’ and ‘Categories’. And there are two types of pages: ‘Author Page’ and ‘Search Page’.

Now the WooCommerce section has three tabs in it: ‘General’, ‘Product Archives’ and ‘Single Product’. As for the ‘Core’ section, the tabs are ‘Site Identity’, ‘Menus’, ‘Widgets’, ‘Homepage Settings’ and ‘Additional CSS’. And the ‘Extensions’ section has two tabs: ‘Cookie Consent’ and ‘Trending Posts’.

Now that we’ve been introduced with the key options the Blocksy theme offers, let’s get familiar with the typography.  We’ll also talk about the above mentioned ‘General’ tab features available on the theme, namely ‘Layout’, ‘Buttons’, ‘Breadcrumbs’, ‘Form Elements’ and ‘Entry Content’.

Caption General tab options

Blocksy Theme Typography Customization

Blocksy theme allows you to add custom Google fonts. You can also manage the font size and font color quite easily. Once you’re on the ‘General options’ and click on ‘Typography’, you’ll get to change/adjust font type, font size and font format (bold/italic/underlined etc). The options that are available here are namely Base Font, Heading 1-6, Buttons, Blockquote, Preformatted and Fallback Font Family. You can also change/adjust the colors of different fonts and texts used on your site.

Caption: Typography options available on the Blocksy theme

Blogsy Theme Color Option

The ‘Colors’ option is found on the ‘General options’ while you’re on the customizer. Once you click on that, you’ll be directed to a place where you’ll see four sections: Global Color Palette, 

Global Colors, All Headings (H1 – H6) and Site Background.

In the ‘Global colors’ section you can choose colors for links in two different situations: normally how the links look and how they should look when you hover over them. You also have options to decide how the texts should normally look and how they look when they’re selected. As for the headings color, you can set a particular color for all types of headings or choose different colors for different headings (e.g. H1 → purple, H2 → blue etc).

Layout Options available

While your active theme is Blocksy, you’re allowed to edit/change the layout of your website as per your choice. In order to do that on the ‘backend’, first of all you’ll have to be on the customizer panel. Once you’re there, you’ll have to click on the ‘General’ tab under the ‘General options’. Then click on the ‘Layout’ tab. By doing this, you’ll be directed where you should be to customize the layout of your site. Frankly, compared to other most popular free themes, the Blocksy theme doesn’t offer you a lot of options here to make your layout ‘quite exceptional’.

There are only four options available for you here, namely Maximum Site Width, Content Area Spacing, Narrow Container Max Width and Wide Alignment Offset, as shown in the following image. Then again sometimes these are enough if you’re planning to run a blog based site or a modest/humble looking WooCommerce site or something like that.

 caption – Layout option on Free Blocksy theme

The default settings for these four parameters are respectively 1290 px, 60 px, 750 px and 130 px. However you surely can always change them at any instant you feel like. To present an example, if you like to change The ‘Maximum Site Width’ setting (which is enclosed in a green rectangular box in the above image), you’ll have to drag the small blue circle associated with it sidewise, to the left or right. If you drag/move it to the right (as marked with a red arrow), the setting value will increase. When it reaches the rightmost end, the setting value will be maximum, by applying which you can have maximum site width the Blocksy theme offers to your webpage.

The same way you can have your optimum value for the other three settings, which are ‘Content Area Spacing’, ‘Narrow Container Max Width’ and ‘Wide Alignment Offset’. At this moment it is noteworthy that you’ll have to do these settings individually for desktop/laptop PC, tablet computer and mobile devices. Also You’ll need to Click on the ‘Publish’ button after changing these settings, otherwise the changes won’t reflect on your webpage.

‘Night mode’ option

Now let’s talk about the night mode option and the ‘reverse play’ like button at the lowermost portion of the above image. These two are situated to the left: the night mode button is pointed out by a green arrow and the ‘reverse play’ button by a violet arrow. The purpose of the night mode button should be pretty clear to any computer user, which is to set the customizer to either the day/sun mode or the night mode. There are people who prefer the night mode, because that way they get to see the background as black and texts as white.

This reduces the pressure on eyes by emanating far less white light fluxes from the monitor screen/display upon the eyes of the computer/device user.

Let’s talk about the ‘reverse play’ button a little, when you click on this the ‘customization left sidebar’ goes to the further left, out of the screen to momentarily vanish. This way it lets you view your whole webpage without any distraction and you get to scrutinize whether you’ve got your optimum layout, the one you’ve had in your mind. The ‘reverse play’ thing is just a type of arrow (actually tip of an arrow) which shows the direction the customizer window can move towards.

When you’re on ‘full screen’ mode, the arrow points to the right, which means that if the button is clicked now, the window/panel under discussion will now move to the right to show up on the screen.

Now that we’ve discussed the layout options in detail, let us focus on a few other ‘General’ features, namely ‘Buttons’, ‘Breadcrumbs’ and ‘Form Elements’.

Buttons Design

There are a few options for the buttons to be used on your website. These are divided into two switchable tabs: ‘General’ and ‘Design’. In the ‘General’ tab, you have the option to set the value for button ‘Minimum Height’ whose default is 40 px. You can also decide whether there will be any ‘Hover Effect’ or not.

Caption : ‘General’ options for the buttons on the Blocksy theme

There are a few options for the buttons to be used on your website. These are divided into two switchable tabs: ‘General’ and ‘Design’. In the ‘General’ tab, you have the option to set the value for button ‘Minimum Height’ whose default is 40 px. You can also decide whether there will be any ‘Hover Effect’ or not.

blocksy theme button design
Caption – Button Design options

In the ‘Design’ tab for buttons you get to set the ‘Font Color’ and the ‘Background Color’. In each case you’ll see two color options, actually two circles. The circle to the left is for ‘normal’ conditions where no hovering doesn’t occur over the buttons. The one to the right is for hovering effect. You also have the option to decide whether or not any border will show and finally can set the value for border radius, as shown in the above image. One thing to keep in mind is that you’ve got to set your options/choices individually for each device, namely desktop/laptop computers, tablet computers and mobile devices.

Breadcrumbs

In case you didn’t know what breadcrumbs are, just take a look at the following image:

The portion which is enclosed by a rectangular yellow box is a breadcrumb for a particular type of product. This actually indicates a location in a website. A breadcrumb can lead you to a ‘single post’ or single product page. It can also lead you to an archives page. Now let’s talk about the customization options you have for breadcrumbs on the free version of the Blocksy theme.
Caption –  Breadcrumbs general options

The Blocksy theme customization options for the breadcrumbs are divided into two tabs/categories: ‘General’ and ‘Design’. In the ‘General’ tab you have the option to set the symbol for separator and also whether the ‘Home Item’ should be represented by an icon or the text ‘Home’. You can set the home page text. You also get to decide whether the ‘Current Page/Post Title’ and the ‘Current Taxonomy Title’ will show or not.Now about the breadcrumb ‘Design’ tab options: here you can set the breadcrumbs font type, font size and and font style. Below that you can set the ‘Breadcrumbs Font Color’. You get to set the color in three different situations: text, link initial and link hover. These thing are depicted in the following image:

Caption – breadcrumbs design

Form Elements

There are a few options for you to choose from for the ‘Form Elements’ on the Blocksy theme. In the first two sections you have the options to set ‘Form Format/style’ (these are of two types: ‘Classic’ and ‘Modern’) , ‘Font Color’ and ‘Font Size’. In the next ‘Input and Textarea’ section you get to set ‘Border Color’, ‘Background Color’, ‘Border Size’, ‘Input Height’, ‘Textarea Height’ and ‘Border Radius’. In the following section you can set the colors for the radio buttons and checkboxes that appear on the website. Now here you have two types of colors: one for ‘normal’ and the other is for ‘hovering effect’. The bottom section is named ‘Select Dropdown’ and here you get to set the ‘Font Color’ and the ‘Background Color’. Everything we’ve discussed here are depicted in the following image:

Caption –  Form elements options

Page Builder Support/Integration

As hinted out in the previous paragraph, the Blocksy theme has been built primarily to meet the requirements of web developers who like to work with Gutenberg or Brizy page builders. Out of thirteen starter templates available for this theme, ten templates work with Gutenberg, seven are compatible with Brizy and three are for Elementor page builder. This may be surprising to some of you, because 10 + 7 + 3 = 20, not 13. The thing is that some of these templates support two of the three page builders mentioned above. For instance, the following ‘Business’ template supports both Gutenberg and Brizy page builders.

Blocksy theme template
Blocksy Theme Business Template

So, We can say the Blocksy theme is compatible with the native Gutenberg , Elementor and Brizy Page builders.

The customization panel of the Blocksy theme offers a number of amazing features to design the header of your website. When you’re on this particular portion of the panel, you’ll see two tabs: ‘Elements’ and ‘Headers’. Under the ‘Elements’ tab you’ll find the elements that you can add to the three rows of the Blocksy header. You can keep one or two rows totally empty, or you can stuff all the three rows with elements; this depends entirely on your choice and custom needs.

Header elements

Now about the elements that can be added to the header of the Blocksy theme: these are namely Account, Button, Cart, HTML, Logo, Menu 1, Menu 2, Search and Socials.  Though the number of these usable elements isn’t exactly huge, it is decently okay. After all, these are the basic elements that an user/client might want (or need) to add to the header of their website, in most cases. Another thing is that you get to choose which element is to be placed on which row.

Blocksy theme header builder
Caption – Blocksy theme header builder

Now let’s see what will happen if you choose the ‘Headers’ tab instead of the ‘Elements’ tab mentioned above. Upon clicking on this, we would see ‘Global Header’. Going further we would encounter two nice functionalities offered by the Blocksy theme: ‘Sticky Functionality’ and ‘Transparent Functionality’. By sliding each of these individually you can enable these features.

Caption – Sticky and Transparent functionalities on the Blocksy theme

Footer Builder

When you go to the Footer section of the Blocksy theme, you’ll get to see two tabs: Elements and Footers. Just like the Header section, you have a number of elements on the Footer section to choose from and you get to place them on different positions of three rows, as you please. These elements are ‘hold, drag and drop’ type, which means it is super easy to place them on the rows. Among the elements are Copyright, Footer Menu, Socials, Widget Area 1-6. These Widgets can be used for various purposes like placing an ad code, ‘About me’ section, contact info, a quote, a special post and many more. These Widgets will become available after activating the ‘Widgets extension’’. In order to activate this, you can simply

go to WordPress DashboardBlocksyExtensions and then click the Activate button on the Widgets extension, it’s that simple.

Caption – Footer Widgets and other options

Now by clicking on the ‘Footers’ tab instead of the ‘Elements’ tab, you’ll be able to edit the Global Footer of your site. When you click on this, you’ll see somewhat like below:

Caption – Global Footer portion of Blocksy theme

As you can see in the above image, you have the option to enable ‘reveal effect’ on desktop or laptop computer, tablet devices and even on mobile devices, also known as mobile/cell/smart phones. You can change the Footer background color to anything of your imagination. To sum up, the Blocksy theme really offers you a lot of choices for the Header and the Footer sections of your website.

Blocksy theme footer builder
Caption – Blocksy theme footer builder

Starter Templates