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Divi Review – The best all-round WordPress theme

Nov 30, 2020 | Reviews

Divi
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What is Divi?

Divi is arguably the best WordPress theme around. The most powerful feature of Divi is actually that it’s really a great mix. On one hand side, it’s really directed towards beginners in WordPress web design. This must not be missunderstood, because it’s neither really simple nor it’s limited to beginners. Because on the other hand, it is possible to create almost anything with Divi, but it takes some learning time and also knowledge of CSS and Js. In this Divi review, I do not intend to mention just about everything Divi can or can’t do; there’s just too much of this for a post. Instead, I’ll try to pinpoint the main features and let you check the details on the official Divi website, where you can find all the details you might want to know.

The power Elegant Themes (the vendor) states the most is Divi’s power that enables even complete newbies to create a beautiful WordPress website.

And it’s perfectly true, but of course limited to the built-in designs and layouts that guys at Elegant Themes prepared for us. If you want though, you can make so much more – read about it lower in this short Divi review.

Divi

What is included with the Divi theme

Divi, as a pure premium WordPress theme, is free to download and use, so there’s no risk involved in testing it. Of course, free installation does not include updates, so you’ll be stuck with the version you download. In Divi’s case, it’s tricky, because development is very fast and upgrades and fixes are more or less hapenning on the weekly base. But of course it’s perfectly ok for testing purposes, so you know what you’ll be buying.

The intensity of Divi updates is best seen from the Divi changelog.

When you use it professionaly, as a web designer or an agency, or even just for your own sites, you’ll however want to pay the subscription fee. It gives you so much more, not only updates, but also another premium theme, called Extra, and a bunch of plugins that will help you accomplish things. So, with Divi subscription, here’s what you get:

  1. Divi: a fantastic all-round WordPress theme that can do just about anything, from simple one-page sites to complex Woocommerce online stores.
  2. Divi Builder: a plugin that you can use on any WordPress theme and enables you to build pages and posts parallel to any other theme you might like.
  3. Extra: a great blogging WordPress theme, based on the same core as Divi, but with certain features that are more blog-oriented.
  4. Bloom: a WordPress plugin that will enable you to collect emails from your visitors in a Divi way.
  5. Monarch: a WordPress plugin that makes it easy to work with social network sharing.

All of these modules you can see first-hand on this very website, by the way. This site is intentionally not too crowded but rather basic in design, showing you roughly what you get from Divi right out of the box.

What can you do with Divi

Basically, anything you want.

Divi includes hundreds of pre-designed layouts to help you start almost any project you can imagine, and they’re all built with the included Divi Builder. Installing it on your website literally means starting a new page, choosing the wanted layout from the library, and installing it. After that, it’s your turn to change whatever you need or like and make it your own. This works for the whole sites, pages, as well as only header and footer layouts.

Main Divi features

Modules

Divi includes a number of modules that are used to build the layouts. These include text, image and video, as well as more complicated modules like post carousels, sliders and similar. Sometimes you might think the one that you’d really need just now is missing, but actually most of the functionality can be done with the included modules alone. For the ones that are really beyond these, there’s a ton of third party developers that can really fulfill any need. Just to show a few, I’ll use the Blurb module. Note that these are just examples of different designs, you can easily design just about every element of the module.

 

Divi Blurb module

Blurb module

Blurb module consists of an image, title and text. It’s great to showcase different possibilities.

Divi Slider module

Divi Slider module

Sliders in Divi arre simple to build, and although not too complex, they can be a powerful  showcase on any page.

Divi Optin module

Divi Optin module

Divi makes it easy to create optin forms for any purpose, using the built-in optin module or optional Monarch plugin.

Presets

Each module in a row can be designed differently (as shown above), or you can use something called Divi Presets. You can set a certain design as a preset (ulimited number of presets possible!) and when you assing it to a group of elements, you can literally change the look of a website with a few clicks, only by changing the preset.

Responsive layouts

Of course, Divi is fully responsive. All the modules and layouts will fit perfectly on any device, and you can change anything for different devices right inside the builder. Just check this page on a mobile device and you’ll see perfect stacking of all the modules. And I’m using the default values, btw.

Divi Builder

I already mentioned the Divi Builder. It’s a WYSIWYG WordPress builder – it means that you can literally design and create your layouts on the front end and see your changes as you make them. It is available as a stand-alone plugin too, but you don’t need to install it if you’re using the Divi theme, because it’s included.

Theme Builder

Since this year, Divi includes something called Theme Builder. While it may sound boring, it’s something that Divi users asked for a long time. In short, it makes it possible for a user to create standard layouts for his website, including headers and footers, depending on the need. Additionaly, these layouts can be either global (for the entire website), or localized to certain pages and taxonomies (categories, groups, etc.). So what it does it makes layouts that will show your design and you’ll be able to change them in a single place, the Theme Builder, while they’ll change your entire website accordingly. Powerful stuff and a great time-saver.

Portability – Import & Export

Divi fully supports portability, which means you can always export your layouts or modules from any layout to a .json file and import it to another website altogether. This is great if you want to duplicate the main design you’ve just created on another website and customize it there. It could not be any simpler, really.

Woocommerce integration

Divi fully supports Woocommerce integration and you can build quite large sites with it. Using the mentioned Theme Builder, you can define the looks of every product included (based on taxonomies like category), so your store will look exactly like you want it to and be unique.

Rows and Columns

Divi fully supports columns in a row, like this one. There are a number of layouts included in the builder, and you can define your own if you’re a little bit familiar with php and CSS.

Divi Optin module

Ok, Divi is great for beginners – what about advanced stuff?

Don’t worry. While Divi is a complete theme and you might just have all you need inside, there is a lot of space for custom solutions. You’ll have to know a bit about php and CSS, of course, and then you can do just about anything. There are numerous examples and tutorials on how to create even full modules for Divi, and since there are so many users out there, you might even be able to sell them.

Divi Subscription

Buying a Divi subscription is not the cheapest, but you’ll get a whole lot of functionality for your money. Also, there are numerous Divi support groups on Facebook that have tens of thousands of members willing to share ideas and help you. I’d really suggest you take a look if you plan to make WordPress your tool of choice, as you’ll get a fantastic theme right out of the box.

In any way, you’ll get really a lot for your money. Very much recommended. 

Divi deals

During certain periods of time, Elegant Themes is usually offering huge discounts on their yearly and lifetime subscriptions. With the offer they’re also giving in big bonuses. I really suggest you take a look at Divi, because you can save huge amount of money while getting the best theme out there.

But they say Divi is slow?

Lots and lots of comments are made about Divi being a slow theme. This is unfortunatelly a problem that any advanced page builder has. It originates from the fact that the HTML code sent to the page renderer usualy uses shortcodes that trigger the theme’s functionality. It unavoidably adds something to the whole package you (that is, a visitor) need to download before the web page is rendered in the browser and ready to be viewed, along with the time the server needs to work everything out.

Divi is doing that, Elementor is doing that, and many other advanced builders have the same problem. So why are they doing it if they know it’s not good?

Because it’s one of the things WordPress as such is imposing. The whole WordPress system is designed to be as open as possible, but this brings its own set of problems. And the overhead code the server has to deal with is just one of them. Remember, WordPress creates each and every page you see on the fly, literally. The underlying PHP code reads the database and using the plugins for any added functionality it creates the basoic HTML code your browser can understand and show.  Normally, adding the code to work out ads certain amounts of time needed.

But in the end, it’s all about the balance. The more you want from your theme and the easier the editing you want to be, the more software will be needed to make it possible.

Let’s make something clear regarding Divi’s speed

By all means, I agree that Divi (and Elementor and many other builders) are creating lots of code tomake beautiful pages and easy editing possible. But it’s usually very easy to fix.

I’m sure you know that the cheaper the hosting you buy, the less power it will have. Simple as that. The basic shared host deals, the ones you get for $1/month, are usually not suitable for WordPress at all – let alone a premium theme functionality.

So the first rule when deciding about the hosting is never go with the cheapest. You will have speed problems, no matter what theme you use. The WordPress core will make sure of that. The better theme you want and the more functionalities you need (like building an online shop), the more power you will need. Period.

The second rule says OPTIMIZE. This is a completely other debate, but basically you should avoid large and unoptimized images, always use a good caching plugin, and so on. With all that done, Divi will become as fast as any other theme.

Read a bit about choosing a proper hosting here.

 

Divi 5

Divi 5 is about to hit the market in about a year or so. It’s presently in the development and the reports fro Elegant Themes look very promising.

The reason why it’s takinng so long is that they’re re-writing the complete core, with one major target in mind: speed. And the way they’re doing it is they’re getting rid of shortcodes alltogether.

In short, this means the theme’s core will somehow bypass the usual WordPress – shortcode – renderer process, resulting in much smaller overhead and much faster work for everyone. As many others we’re eager to see this upgrade live, because it may change a lot of things. 

Note: opting in for a Divi membership now will guarantee you get this upgrade free when it’s ready. Nobody is really sure whether the pricing structure will remain the same. So – take a look. 

 


We are in affiliate business with many of the vendors who's products we mention here and write reviews about, which means we could get a certain commission from them should you buy their product via our links. We are however not connected to them in any other way, nor we receive any special commissions for making good reviews. We try to hold our opinion fair and honest, giving you both the ups and downs where we see them. Everything written here is our own opinion and assessment of the possibilities that software provides.
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