Just Released, Pixel Union’s Grid 3.0
One of the most popular Shopify eCommerce premium themes over the last few years has been Pixel Union’s “Grid.” It has a clean and modern layout and lots of features. Tons of our TaskHusky customers are using it. Pixel Union first launched the Grid theme in 2015 and it has had several updates, tweaks, and added features since its release. But when we saw that they had just released a complete new version update, we had to take a look.
First, The Facts
When a professional theme has minor updates along the way, keeping up with the minor version releases is fairly straight-forward. Then you just go through and make sure that everything updated correctly and fix any minor issues that popped up. We do that for customers every day. But this is a major update – they’re calling “Grid 3.0” – so if you are already using the Grid theme and want to get all the latest bells and whistles, you will need to do a full manual update.
If you are already using the Grid theme on your Shopify store, you get to access this major upgrade at no extra cost (cool!). As with all major updates, you will want to take your time and spend a little extra effort making sure that everything is looking and functioning right. Get help with any theme update by starting a task on our site.
It’s Totally Worth It
Sometimes an eCommerce website refresh is just what the doctor ordered to jump-start engagement and sales. And the new features in Grid 3.0 are cool enough to make it worthwhile. Just like the previous version, the new and improved Shopify Grid theme still has four styles: Bright, Light, Warm, and Moody. Each can be customized and adjusted, but they all come out of the box ready to rock with all the new features. So, let’s talk about some of those new features.
Hero Text Brings Sexy Back … to Shopify Headers
As Pixel Union mentions, just a few years ago the top of the homepage was all about big images, parallax, and slideshows. Times have changed, and this section – arguably the most valuable real estate on your site – needs to do more than just wow-them with colors. It needs to deliver a message as well.
Grid 3.0 lets you make that valuable real estate all text, or – what we like best – you can overlay powerful and SEO-able engagement messages right over the top of your hero image.
Important Safety Tip – Remember that “big” images don’t have to be “big.” If you don’t optimize your header image properly it can really slow down page load speed which is a cardinal sin of online eCommece design in the mobile world (this applies to your product images too, see this post).
Video Killed The Radio Star, But Sold More Stuff Online
Video IS all the rage right now for user engagement. This is true of just about everything that you can think of online – from Shopify eCommerce to social media. Grid 3.0 adds homepage video with text overlay. And it goes a very big leap further by letting you add playable videos in the masonry section of the home page – that area of blocked images and text that usually appears right below the hero image.
Our instant reaction to having short videos in the masonry area was … wow! Not only do we love the idea from an engagement and innovation standpoint, but we can’t wait to see how our customer use this new feature space. My head explodes with ideas for coolness.
All In All It’s Just Another Brick … Of Masonry Options
Getting back to that masonry section, Grid 3.0 adds new layout options. These days, the words “masonry” and “grid” don’t necessarily mean a series of evenly space image slabs. Nowadays, these sections have images of different dimensions and properties so that it’s less “cinder-block wall” and more “image mosaic.” This lets the sizing and placement of the images tell a part of the story, which is a nice tool to have in your pocket.
More Options, More Mobile, and More
Pixel Union has a bunch of other things that they’ve added to this release as well that we like. There are more on-board font options, a better mobile and responsive experience, and a new customer testimonial section that sits right on the home page.
Pixel Union has put up a real nice landing page for the Grid 3.0 release and you can access full demos of each style. All four styles are great, but there is something I really like about the artistic flair of the Moody style that lends itself to story-telling with images. So if I have to pick a favorite, that's the one. But no matter which style is your favorite, we think that the Grid Shopify theme from Pixel Union is going to stay on the bestsellers list for a while.
Thanks for reading!