Updating:

WP Champion Professional Theme Ver 3.1. has been released in our API for updating by way of the theme internal update function.  If you have any questions your  welcome to contact the support team for guidance prior to updating.

You do not need to update to WP 5.5 urgently.  Our theme release is WP 5.5 compatible but many (most) plugins are not WP 5.5 compatible. We normally recommend waiting a few days to update.  On our own managed platform we will be withholding on updating until at least approx Aug 20 as many plugins in use in websites are struggling with the jquery  changes in WordPress 5.5.  Websites which wait to update WordPress and their plugins avoid all the drama.  Sit Back! Relax! If in doubt contact the support team!

ORDER OF UPDATING - VERY IMPORTANT!

There is a specific order of updating and our advice is that you not update anything until you are certain all your most important plugins have indicated they have a WordPress 5.5 compatible release.  We have noticed some plugins that are offering WP 5.5 updates are not backwards compatible.  And if you update WordPress before you update the theme and plugins its guaranteed your going to break something, possibly the entire website!

Customers of our Total Managed hosting platform can leave every aspect of updating to our hosting team (headed by James!). But if you feel you would like professional assistance in updating we offer very reasonable update pricing – contact us by email at support@thethemebuilders.com or via our skype id: support-thethemebuilders.com.

The recommended order of updating is:

  1. Do a backup of your website.  Its often useful to export your Rev Sliders, Essential Grids and you can also export your menus and even all your widgets.  But at least run a full backup of your database and website.
  2. Update all plugins other then those that are included with WP Champion.
  3. Update WP Champion and then update all the theme included plugins
  4. Only then do you update your WordPress to Ver 5.5!
  5. MOST IMPORTANT: Once you start the updating don’t stop halfway to see if your site looks okay.  Of course it does not as your only part of the way through the process!

We discuss it further on but this update of WordPress has a major change in the core: they have changed jquery libraries from jquery.migrate ver 1.4 to jQuery3.5.  The change skips across yrs of gradual changes in jquery.  As a result the impact on complex themes and plugins is extensive.  Most theme java scripts are oriented towards working with the old jquery library and for many of these scripts there is no new update to work with jQuery3.5.

It took us about 90 hours of coding to adjust all our own theme code, which perhaps gives you a glimpse of the magnitude of this jquery change.  We had to adjust most external scripts that we have built into WPC ourselves as updates on the web did not exist.  Just imagine the difficulties for theme and plugin developers who outsource most of this work and do not have an internal ability to rewrite java -> a large number of themes and plugins at Envato fit this description with some or all of their actual code base jobbed out. 

Today's Release:

The release today has several main goals:

WP Champion Professional Theme Ver 3.1 Changelog:

Our API build webpage has a “Files” tab with a breakout of New, Different and Deleted Files.  The list of Different files – files that have been edited with code changes is very lengthy with over 125 theme code files needing amendments mainly due to the jquery updates in WP.  There are half a dozen new files (due to new shortcodes mainly) and a small amount of file deletions.

The Detail tab in the API release webpage will present you with the actual edited code in each file.  Please note its not the entire content of each file but the blocks of code in each file that were edited.  Click on “highlight” and edited code will be highlighted with two colors: purple for old code and green for new code.

Release Log:

3 New Elementor Plugins:

We added these plugins to enhance the ease of editing and administration of Elementor.

Custom Fonts Plugins : which allows you to load a custom fontface font for use in the Elementor Font Selector when working with styles in an elementor widget
Flexible Elementor Panel Plugin: With this plugin you can reorder the Elementor adminstrator, minimize it, move it around the page, and other functions
Anywhere Elementor Plugin: allows elementor content/templates to be shortcoded so you can use in pages built with shortcode, and more functions.

The Anywhere Elementor plugin is a key new addition for WP Champion.  When editing any traditional shortcode built page via Elementor one could easily add new elementor styled content above and below the existing page content.  But Elementor takes all the existing content in a webpage and throws it into one text editor block to which one could not mix with new elementor widgets.  Anywhere Elementor solves this problem.

We will soon post a video showing how to use AE with WPC but in a nutshell you create some content and save it as a template block.  Then you add create a new AE template by simply calling up this content you built, and save it in the AE edit panel.  It give it a simple shortcode name.  You copy and paste this shortcode where you wish it in the text editor widget and now you have injected Elementor styled content into your shortcoded content mix.  FYI, the time you took to read this paragraph is how long it would take to run these steps.  They are really quick and easy to do.

Anywhere Elementor has another nice function in that content created in it is global reactive when re-edited.  In a normal Elementor template if you edit the template the editing will only apply to new instances of use of the template.  But everywhere in which that template block has already is not updated.  Template blocks built in AE – one of its other purposes is creating new Elementor blocks are always retroactive to all live instances when the edit is saved if it is done in the AE edit panel.

There is a pro version of Anywhere Elementor which offers some advanced edit functions useful with custom fields and dynamic tag content but the free version accomplishes all we needed for mixing shortcode and elementor content.

5 Premium Plugins Updated:

Element Pack Pro: updated to version 5.3.1.  SEE IMPT UPDATE NOTE BELOW.
Super Elements: updated to version 2.2.1
Responsive Menu Pro: updated to version 3.1.30
Slider Revolution: updated to version 6.2.20
Essential Grid: updated to version 3.0.3

Prior to updating Element Pack go into your plugins panel and deactivate it.  They changed the location of where the theme license code is stored in their recent update.  So in order not to be plagued by a constant message to input the theme license code (which you do not have of course!) you must deactivate the plugin prior to updating it.  After updating and activating Element Pack please go to Element Pack->Core Widgets in the dashboard menu and toggle on all the Pro Widgets.  You get them all with our theme version but you have to toggle the Pro group active in order to make them accessible to you.

Element Pack recently introduced a new way to import their templates from within the dashboard.  So its no longer necessary to manually import the templates like in prior versions.  They also introduced a new feature where one could directly copy content from their demo site into a webpage being edited.  And they have a huge array of prebuilt block and page templates.  This plugin has even more widgets the Elementor itself, and they have a full array of widgets for plugins such as several form plugins, Rev Slider, Essential Grid and many more plugins that assist with styling of those elements in a page.

Super Elements has many less widgets but its team has very creative designs for some of its widgets.  We are big fans of several of their widgets such as the Super Gallery widget, their hotspot widget and others.

WordPress 5.5 Compatibility

Changed: Theme JS to compatible with WordPress 5.5 as they removed jquery migrate and switched to jQuery3.2.
Changed: recoded our navigation-js, responsive-menu-js, customcombine.js and dialog.js for jQuery 3.5.x following the upcoming changes to be made in WordPress 5.5, 5.6, 5.7
Changed: testimonial.php, carousel.php and process_steps.php for jQuery 3.5.x following the upcoming changes to be made in WordPress 5.5, 5.6, 5.7
Changed: Tab and Gmap coed for WordPress 5.5 and jquery 3.5.x

Much blood, sweat and tears were involved in the above changes.   What is really amazing is how WordPress glossed over the jquery changes as they are have by far the most widespread impact of this update.  Had Paul’s eagle eye not caught the little email months ago that mentioned this we would all be in deep trouble.  Even in the developer logs it is glossed over.  We feel it is deliberate (its not the first time WP has done something like this) but that is a discussion for another time… We have peers whose themes are non-functional with WP 5.5 and it was a major undertaking to update and upgrade theme php and js for the jquery change.

Woocommerce

Added: Support for Woocommerce Category & Tags Meta in Search Result Pages.
Added: Shop page permalink in woocommerce category/tag/ pages to the breadcrumb path.
Added: Woocommerce categories and Portfolio Categories into single product and single portfolio breadcrumbs path.
Added: Spinner layouts for woocommerce spinners.
Added: Spinner color settings in the theme Woocommerce options.
Added: Full width button setting for woocommerce products for shop page, related and upsel products.
Updated: Woocommerce 4.3.0 & 4.4.0 compatibility. Updated title.php for woocommerce 4.4.0
Fixed: Woocommerce ordering css below 479 px.
Fixed: Theme fix adding Unique ID for Woocommerce product attribute ID in variation products causing conflicts when attribute has same name as one of the theme elements. This is a woocommerce bug reported by us for which we are still waiting on being resolved. https://github.com/woocommerce/woocommerce/issues/26832
Fixed: Theme button shortcode was not displaying the correct button colors and layout in a woocommerce page when complex theme css was loaded.
Changed: Shop page title in breadcrumb now will show the actual shop page title and not ‘products’ anymore. Including setting to turn this on/off.

WP Champion has a separate settings panel for Woo integration with almost 150 settings.  Furthermore when editing any single product you have yet another array of settings to control placement and display of elements in the single product display, and what is shown in a product list such as on the Shop Page.  You can even build a 100% custom shop page and not use any of the default Woo list shortcodes which give very bland output.

Our Champion Woo integration is compatible with Fancy Product Designer which is perhaps the most advanced self hosted product design woo plugin available.  But most importantly with WP Champion you can build, manipulate, and categorize in more ways then ever thought possible a store with Woo.  Many woo plugins for styling are not necessary due to the abilities within WP Champion.  We save you money!

WPML

Added: WPML Taxonomy titles and text translation for portfolio category and portfolio tags.
Adjusted: WPML string translation permalink issues for portfolio, portfolio-categories, portfolio-tags.

Thinking of a multi-language website?  We are 100% compatible with WPML and have some nice WPML tweaks in our theme.  We are also full RTL language compatible (Hebrew and Arab languages) with all our content having rtl css in place.

Blog and Portfolio, Meta

Added: Portfolio Tag Ability. Also added Tags in Portfolio shortcode generator as selection option to create a portfolio overview.
Added: Meta Date linking setting ON/OFF in blog meta settings with override in blog / portfolio and preset options.
Added: Image Alt Text support for featured image in Blog an Portfolio. It will grab the alt text as set at the image in the media library.
Added:
Featured Image Custom Title setting for the featured image a-tag title element that wraps the featured image. If left empty the post title is used.
Added:
Title length setting in number of words for featured image for blog and portfolio a-tag image wrapper to avoid google mobile friendly error messages. With override in page options.
Added: Support for Portfolio Category Meta in Search Result Pages.
Added:
Setting for Page Meta Items (Date, Author, Tags & Comments) in search result pages.
Fixed:
Corrected bug Meta Items in Search result pages had the same Date, Categories, Comments, Tags & Author.
Fixed:
Missing icons in meta-items shortcode.
Fixed:
Bug fix Tags showing as categories when post had no tags but had categories and vice versa.

A couple of major impacts in the above. First we added tagging ability to our portfolio custom post type.  This brings Portfolio lists control on par with the level of selection available for blog lists. 

We added even more function to post meta.  Did you know in fact our meta is a shortcode?  So you can place it anywhere in page content rather then in just the standard position right after a post title.  We have seen some blogs (not built using WP) where the meta was at the end of the post – it looked quite cool to us and we thought why not take it a step further and just short code it for use anywhere. So we did!  And as you will see when you go further down this update we did the same with something else: Breadcrumbs have been shortcoded in this release as well!

Media

Added: Simple Any Video Embed Shortcode for video platforms that allow iframe embed and that are not supported by the other media video shortcodes.
Added: Groups Span setting to image and easy image shortcode.  kaptinlin.com/support/discussion/13363/lightbox-group
Added: playlist support for youtube video shortcode.
Fixed: auto play in audio and video theme media shortcode. Because browsers are blocking autoplay of any media we now add mute=1 to the media set for autoplay. This is the only way to get autoplay for embedded media elements working. It is not a bug, but it is because Browser manufacturers and or media distributors have changed the rules.

We had a request on the Striking forum for support for Youtube playlist support and after some investigation were able to implement this in the youtube shortcode.  Champion theme owners inquired about the auto play matter and it may be we are the only theme which has found a work around enabling autoplay although on initial play volume is still muted and your viewer has to toggle volume active.

Header, Footer and Navigation

Added: header_overlap class into body class.
Added: Force full Width top Menu into page options.
Added: Footer Appearance settings to adjust top bottom padding for the footer widget area with override in the page options.
Added:
Setting to set bottom margin between footer widgets with override in the page options.
Changed:
moved Featured Header options in Theme Page options directly below the Header options.
Changed:
moved header_overlap css from dynamicly generated css in common.php to the theme screen.css and screen_complex.css files.
Fixed:
Topmenu Settings adjust_outer was applied when no top menu image was set. This was wrong. it should only be applied when a bg image was set.
Fixed:
Top Menu sticky for boxed mode.
Fixed:
header-topmenu.php  a code “if” statement was not closed properly.
Fixed: Search widget button layout in footer. Input field was overlapped by the button resulting in any search text entered vanishing behind that button.
Fixed:
CSS issue with elementor using stretched elements by shortcode in footer. Footer inner did not allow overflow.

Of the above the most impactful for many is a request fulfilled to give control to the footer padding and margins.  Another benefit of all our theme coding is that we significantly improved the speed rendering of the header and navigation elements which is especially beneficial in complex headers.

Breadcrumbs

Added:  Breadcrumbs shortcode to add the breadcrumbs by shortcode at any place in the content.
Added:  Arguments apply_filter for breadcrumbs plus and theme breadcrumbs defaults.
Added:  Portfolio page permalink in portfolio category/tag/ pages to the breadcrumb path.
Fixed:  Yoast Seo plugin has moved its values stored in the database into a new global variable. Turning On the use of the Yoast Breadcrumbs did not work anymore because we were reading the wrong variable and option from the database.

Breadcrumbs are very important for in-page SEO.  People often have qualms about the default placement of breadcrumbs by WordPress.  So we offer our WP Champion owners two options now:

  1. Use the theme setting to hide breadcrumbs in the page content but have the breadcrumbs schema and markup tagging show in the page source thereby preserving the full benefit of the breadcrumbs seo value.
  2. As breadcrumbs provide an easy visual path for viewers of where they are in a site’s hierarchy now you can place and style them anywhere in your page content if you wish breadcrumbs as a visual aid.

Retina

Added:  turn ON/OFF use of retina images in the theme advanced settings and in the page options to override the global theme setting.
Added:  Retina images support nivo slider ON/OFF/DEFAULT setting in Theme Slideshow options & Nivo Slider Shortcode.

Sometimes one just does not need retina image support on a particular webpage or perhaps does not want this at all in their website.

SIDENOTE:  Did you know that the Nivo Slider in WP Champion is an html slider?  When creating/editing a single slide one uses the wp editor to custom design a slide.  Both html and shortcodes are supported.  Sometimes the Rev Slider is overkill, and Elementor sliders are image and post featured image with only limited caption and description abilities.  The Nivo Slider and our Ken Burns Slider can bridge the inbetween area in slider design.   This Nivo Slide is an example of an html slide.  We will post more examples soon.

Other New Features

Added:  Various NEW RRS Feed settings in the Global Theme Blog Settings with overrides in the Single Post Blog Options to Control the size, alignment and visibility of the Featured Image in the RSS Feed as completely customize the RSS Feed content.
Added:  Browser Tab Title Swapping and animating when tab becomes inactive. General settings and override in Theme page options.
Added:  Search form layout setting for the 404 page.

WordPress RSS support by plugin developers has almost vanished with plugin after plugin vanishing from the codex over the last few yrs.  Almost all WordPress themes completely ignore RSS, which is very difficult to work with at the best of times and the developer codex at WordPress is but a byline for content. 

The thought was that RSS was going to die due to other web and social platforms.  But RSS has not died although its use has certainly diminished.  Several of our WP Champion bloggers and institutional customers absolutely require RSS support and asked us what we can do.  The result was we give you the ability to 100% customize your RSS output.  There is a new RSS admin tab in the Blog Panel settings, and when editing a blog post the Blog Single Post Options metabox has a new RSS admin tab which allows you to 100% individually customize that post, even to the extent of creating completely different content (usually its condensed) for the RSS feed.   We do not know of any theme which has such extensive RSS ability. 

Browser Tab Title Animation: look at the browser tabs above. Notice anything?  That is browser tab title animation.

Tweaks and Bug Fixes

This is the hodgepodge of everything else we remember (!) that we adjusted in the last few months.  Some of it is not only “greek” to you but to us as well!!

Added:  Added classname for theme image logo and theme logo text. Also fixed a issue with the logo_text hiding on mobile was not working in some cases.
Added:  Js to detect header_overlap and fire a force full width resize for top level menu containers after window has been loaded when revslider is within the page code. Also added a Setting force full width not properly resizing when header overlap is set to ON and a revslider is used in the featured header and header layout was set to follow custom width. By this setting another extra resize can be fired after the revslider is loaded. Issue only happened on chrome based browsers. This setting will be removed in the future if the new js detect for revslider in the theme js is 100% ok.
Updated:  Admin Language file
Changed:  Loading the modified essential grid fancybox js for essential grid versions between 2.2.1 >=  and < 3.0.0 to avoid conflicts with the theme fancybox js. The loading code will be removed in future builds.
Removed:  {complex_prefix} from section shortcode. It was not needed. Code caused issues in force full width containers when complex css was set to ON.
Removed:  Slideshow anything shortcode generator and jquery.vide.js. We are not using it.
Fixed:  striking.php update code. If swapping themes from striking to champion and vice versa the slider set if was set to a revolution slider was lost and had to be set again in the home page settings. Many adjustments made to the conversion code to be better compatible  when swapping from striking to striking multiflex or to champion theme.
Fixed / Changed:  Nivo Slider random effect setting now only applies to the start of the slider. At start the effect is generated and applied to all slides. To prevent captions get out of sync while sliding due to different effects.
Fixed:  Carousel was not working when carousel caption was toggled on. Vital css was missing.
Fixed:  Typo in the Section Shortcode shortcode generator.
Fixed:  Zoom css not supported by firefox. Changed to transform:scale(1.0);transform-origin: 0 0;-ms-zoom:1;
Fixed:   Loading of Font Face custom CSS even when font-face fonts are turned OFF.
Fixed:   css missing comma in #navigation ul ul li.has-children.current-page-ancestor > a:after css
Fixed:  multibackground slideshow never worked. Diverting it now to the backstretch shortcode.
Fixed:  jquery.gmap.js to support mega menu main gmap in menu.
Fixed:  Tabs first tab being empty, Gmap in tab not initializing in wp 5.5 and jquery 3.5.x
Fixed:  Margins All in text_box shortcode. Element ‘px’ was not added.