I’ve built almost 100 websites with this WordPress Theme, Divi. So I thought I’d create this Divi Theme Review!
Back in the old days when I started my web design business, I was using other Themes that required a lot of coding and manual styling and I remember thinking just how much easier it was back then compared to when I was building HTML websites as a teenager. Now I could customize my theme with a few clicks
But again, times have changed thanks companies like Elegant Themes.
These guys have put a tonne of effort into creating the Divi theme, which has sped up and simplified the process of web design and creating eye-catching sites to an insane level. I can now build websites in a 10th the time I used to thanks Divi and Elegant Themes (more so since the old HTML days).
In saying this, this theme isn’t perfect but it’s pretty darn good.
Please Note: you can read my most recent walkthrough of Divi 4.0 here.
No WordPress theme is perfect. Like all others the Divi theme has it’s Pro’s and it’s Cons, swinging heavily into the favor of the Pros. But knowing its weaknesses may save you some time and direct you toward a more suitable solution.
So I decided that I would go through the Divi Theme and review it here for you, give you a walk-through of why it’s such a great, highly customizable theme whilst also addressing some of the weaknesses. I’ve tried to be as thorough as possible whilst keeping it at a level where you can scan through to get the information you’re after quite quickly. Please note though, that I do use affiliate links in this post that I earn commission from when purchased, but I’d recommend it either way!
So, where to start? Let’s look at the possibilities with this Divi Theme Review. Below is a video which covers everything in depth, but it’s all written below for reference.
Divi Theme Review
- Intro & Divi Theme Examples: 0:00
- Installation: 4:20
- Change the logo: 6:16
- Customize Theme Typography, Header & Template: 7:26
- Exploring the Divi Theme Options: 17:44
- Using the Divi Builder (includes below): 20:26
- Exploring Premade Layouts 21:46
- Playing with spacing, color & Design Options: 23:42
- Starting a Page from Scratch: 34:14
- Other Bonuses that come with Divi: 40:10
- Try for Free: 44:11 (Elegant Themes link below video)
Some Examples of the Divi Theme
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of this Divi theme review, maybe you’d like to see how a few Divi-built websites look and feel. As I mentioned earlier, I’ve built and customized many websites with this theme, so below I have a few here for you to check out including some built by me!
First: We’ll Build You Blog (yes, THIS website you’re on now) is built on the Divi Theme. But I also built another website designed to look similar as a bit of ‘sister site’ to this WBYB:
Wade McMaster .com
This is my web design business, built and customized entirely using the Divi Theme by Elegant Themes. Click the image above to visit!
There’s a hell of a lot more, but I can’t keep listing them here.
I highly recommend checking out these articles below, showcasing unique designs built using Divi Theme if you’re looking for more info!
- 25 Stunning Divi Sites to Feed Your Inspiration
- Elegant Themes Showcase
- 14 Examples of Awesome Web Design Websites Built With Divi
Some of the noteworthy features of Divi
This is more than likely the information you came to see, beyond a review but a full break down of the Divi Theme and what options are available to you if you decide to try it out.
But there’s more than just a customizable Divi page builder, visual builder, and range of options. These guys have tried to give you every possible option in a user-friendly manner to make your website look however you want it to, which is pretty cool.
Below are some key points to Divi.
Installation and setup is easy
All you need to do is purchase the theme, and download it from your member’s area:
You’ll download a zip file. Like any other WordPress Theme, you simply head to your Themes page (under ‘Appearance in your WordPress dashboard), then click ‘Add New’ and then ‘Upload Theme’. Then just upload the Divi Zip file to WordPress.
Once you upload the theme and activate it, you can go into your options and Theme Customizer in your left dashboard menu and start customizing.
Divi Theme Templates
One of the coolest things about the Divi Theme is that it has a range of pre-designed templates that come with the theme. Elegant Themes spared no effort!
Once you start a new page, switch on the Divi Builder (big purple button, hard to miss), you can click ‘Load Layout’ in your purple top bar, and you get a range of pre-made layouts you can review, import and customize.
All of these come standard with the Divi Theme.
But there are some nifty options such as browsing through categories and searching for layouts. What’s really cool too is that you can save your own layouts for future use, even export them and import them as you go.
This can be a major time saver and you have far more options than most pre-designed themes because it’s designed to be customized using the Divi Builder.
What’s even better is they also now offer an ‘existing page’ tab. So you can clone a page quite easily and change the bits and pieces you need. It’s a big time saver.
Drag ‘n’ Drop vs the Divi Visual Builder
The main part of the show is the builder itself, or I should say “builders” (plural). They allow you to completely customize the look of your site.
First, let’s review the Back end Page Builder:
This backend builder is quite easy to navigate and customize with. It has rows, columns, and modules you can easily edit and get the results you want with. You do have to preview the page separately to actually see how your page is looking, but overall it’s solid and flows well.
This builder is perfect for laying down the initial foundation of your page as it operates quicker and more smoothly than the visual builder.
But then you have the Visual Builder:
What you see is what you get. You can build entire pages or even just tweak existing ones here as it’s is a visual representation of the Page Builder with a live preview of your page. You can click to edit text, change spacing or bring up the full options window to make the exactly changed you need (in almost identical fashion to the page builder).
My only complaint is it can occasionally be clunky, although it is mostly a smooth operation. I prefer to tweak visually with this builder and not start from scratch here.
To see the visual builder in action I highly recommend watching the video review at the top of this post, the image just cannot do it justice.
I customize my sites with both builders.
I build in the back end initially and make the finer adjustments with the visual builder. They both work hand in hand quite well and it’s easy to switch between either one. Your own personal preference will also play a big part here as everyone works just a little differently.
Overall both builders used in tandem are a terrific combination and what really make Divi an outstanding WordPress Theme.
The Divi Theme Customizer is quite flexible
It’s really easy to get your theme looking the way you want it too. You simply open up the WordPress Theme Customizer and you get a range of new options from the Divi Theme.
Some of these options are:
- Extensive Font choices and Typography Control – A simple change in font type and size can alter the whole look of a website.
- Every area is customizable color, text, buttons, links, header, footer. Top to bottom you can change every bit and piece of your website design.
- Theme Width so you can make your Website as narrow or as wide as you’d like.
- Separate settings for mobile & tablet – so you can adjust text size and settings when switching devices, making it responsive with 100% full control.
- Customize the Theme’s CSS, If you know a little extra and get stuck, it’s handy if you know CSS as the work time is cut right down. This way you can make final tweaks with code that may be impossible using the standard options. Most people wouldn’t even need this but it is nice to have as a backup.
- Cool Header options, with two headers for your custom menus & bonus elements, both have a lot of customizable options (see below)
Here are some of the customizable header options (there are more than displayed here):
The default Header (above)
Centered Header (above)
Centered Inline Header (above)
Vertical side Menu
Of course, each of these has full color, font and size settings so you can get just above any look you’d like. There are some other options you can review which are harder to put into a screenshot, so again I recommend checking out the video at the top of this page.
Design Options for Rows and Columns
When you build a site or page with the Divi Theme, you lay down a row, you then insert columns and fill those columns with modules and content. But each individual area (columns, rows, modules) all have their own diverse range of customizable settings you can play with.
Here’s a tiny fraction…
Almost Every conceivable setting you can think of is there:
- Background color / images – complete with cool parallax scrolling effects.
- Text and Box Shadows
- Text Sizing and Fonts – with separate options for headers and paragraph text.
- Spacing – Margins and inner padding.
- Borders, Rounded corners
- Color Adjustment settings (Hue, saturation lightness, opacity, etc) and blend modes just like Adobe Photoshop.
- Animations for when an object appears on Screen.
- Row Dividers (these are cool, see below).
- Not enough? There’s a CSS tab to code in your customizations.
As mentioned above, they recently added visual dividers to content so you can get cool effects like this:
Divi Works Perfectly with WooCommerce
Since many people are using WooCommerce to start selling on their WordPress websites, a lot of themes require a workaround to integrate properly.
Divi as taken a step up and added a Shop Module, so you can build pages and include a shop, refine by categories and other options. So it integrates very well with WooCommerce. So that’s a small bonus that can go a long way!
It’s responsive out of the box
More than half of the internet’s users are now on mobile (source here), so if a WordPress Theme isn’t responsive then it is a complete a waste of time. Luckily, Divi happens to be responsive out of the box and requires no further adjustments, so they’re on the ball.
But there are some other options!
You can choose to hide certain areas of your page depending on the device your page is being viewed on (dictated by browser width, as phone and tablets have smaller areas than desktop) . Here’s what it looks like:
So you can customize and design elements specifically for a particular device (or combination of devices) and have an alternate version show up instead. It’s pretty cool and gives you even more flexibility in your page design. I’ve used this for large banner-style images as rearranging elements in your graphics can make them more suitable to match the device they’re being displayed on.
The Divi Builder Plugin – Excellent Backup.
There is one major Con that first plagued the Divi Theme back when it was first released.
If you switched themes, your pages switched over to the shortcodes Divi uses for its elements. Chris Lema wrote up a good article about it here.
But it’s not an issue anymore.
Elegant Themes reviewed the situation and built a plugin called the Divi Builder, that you can download and use with any theme and it keeps these shortcodes in tact, displaying as the full design elements they did when the Divi Theme was active.
So if you switch themes then simply install the builder plugin for backup you’ll be set. This also means that if you don’t actually want to switch to Divi in the first place, you can just go ahead and get the plugin instead, it comes with the theme.
This can be handy for creating pages and blog posts with visual elements.
A long list of cool modules
The functionality of the Divi Theme is diverse, as you have a range of modules you can insert into your pages and customize to get some really cool results.
Here’s a screenshot of modules Elegant Themes list on their official site:
You do have your basic text areas but added functionality with accordions, toggles, blurbs and other visually designed modules you can use to create professional information hot spots on your page without having a never ending page of text (like this theme review you’re reading now! lol).
But the added functionality of counters, contact forms, sliders, video modules and many other things take away the need for you to download a tonne of plugins and give your site “plugin bloat”, which slows down your WordPress installation and can affect traffic.
You can build just about anything using these and they’re all in one spot for convenience.
Divi also comes with 86 other Themes & Additional Plugins
Because Divi is part of the Elegant Themes package (currently $89), you get all of their themes and plugins too. So you get more than just a Theme when you buy.
Some of the extras below can aid Divi or replace it if you prefer to take a different approach. So review below to see what you can expect…
All of the Elegant Themes, uh, WordPress Themes
There are 87 Themes in total. The primary one Elegant Themes sell is Divi, but the next big one is Extra.
Extra is a lot like Divi. It has the Divi page builder, similar functionality but it has some additional features including an organized blog page designed specifically for Magazine or news style websites, just like below (stolen from their website ;) ):
There are some other small pieces like star rating options and a trending widget at the top left of the site template. It’s a purpose built theme for websites that update a lot and need extra categorical organization.
The other pre-designed themes are pretty well made also, there are 87 in total. Below are some of the newer ones.
There’s a catch though, upon deeper review I discoverd that only 22 of the Elegant themes are responsive, which makes a good 65 of them obsolete. So make sure you navigate the ‘responsive’ section when choosing a theme.
We’ve mentioned the Customizable Divi Builder plugin, which allows you to use the builder on any WordPress Theme. It’s really cool!
Elegant Themes also have Bloom and Monarch. There were more (which I can download) but they’re not advertised anymore and they’re not really worth the time to discuss.
Monarch is a social media sharing tool which operates a lot like the sidebar from SumoMe. It’s not a bad plugin but I prefer SumoMe personally. Bloom is the plugin that catches my attention, as I use it to grow my email lists on a couple of websites and it works quite well.
Bloom and the builder plugin are what make the extra plugins worth it in my opinion.
There are a few cons to Divi though
There’s nothing that Divi really takes away from your site, it’s just a lack of coverage in certain areas.
The main template of your website can be customized in the theme customizer, but adding Divi Builder elements to the website template cannot be done, so your blog posts are just in the plain template and are a little more difficult to customize. You can add the code above and below your post but the results are limited. You can also use the builder itself on a blog page but it seems like overkill if you only want to add one little extra.
I don’t see this as a major problem though, as I prefer to keep blog posts minimalist in design so people can focus on your content. But this won’t suit everybody.
Luckily you can do some of this with the Divi.space plugins they’re selling, which expand Divi’s functionality.
Also, if you do decide to switch themes at a later date and have a heap of pages designed in the builder, it means you have to rely on the page builder plugin to work with your theme (which it should) or redesign a heap of pages.
Other than that, the Divi theme is golden. I find these two cons to be hardly worth worrying about, to be honest.
Divi Theme Review – worth the cost?
It pays to review your options. You get a lot of value for $89, although you have to pay that every 12 months if you want updates and support. I personally signed up for 12 months initially, and then upgraded to Lifetime access which is $249. Then you never have to pay a dime again, you continue to receive updates and support.
The price you pay for Divi / Elegant Themes is pretty standard but the package you get in return is above and beyond, especially for the price.
Where to Download the Divi Theme
You simply buy from the official site and download the theme and any other plugins/themes from there. These guys have been around for a while and they’re one of the most popular WordPress Theme companies around.
I’m also working on a short, free video email course you can join up which will show you how to build a website with Divi, it’s not far away but if you want to be notified when it’s ready I highly recommend signing up below:
Other than that, I hope you found this Divi Theme Review useful. Thanks for reading this posts and I hope to see your Divi website up on the internet soon. If you have built a website using Divi, feel free to share the link below in the comments section.
Have an awesome day!
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