Storefront 2.2.0 Released, Includes Design Refresh and Major Improvements to New User Experience

WooCommerce’s flagship Storefront theme released version 2.2.0 today. The release has been more than five months in the making since planning began in early December 2016.

Storefront 2.2.0 focuses on improving the new user experience. Getting all of the right widgets and design settings in place to set up a new store has been a challenge for users in the past. This release introduces a new setup and configuration wizard in the Cusotmizer that takes advantage of WordPress 4.7’s Starter Content feature. If the user is starting with a fresh store, the wizard will automatically import example products, create the homepage and set the correct template, assign the ‘full width’ template to the cart and checkout pages, and remove unnecessary widgets.

Storefront setup wizard in the Customozer

This release also brings an overall design refresh that includes a new homepage hero section. The Storefront development team replaced the theme’s previous dark header background with a white one in order to put the focus on product images and improve the appearance of site logos. This small but important change gives the theme an overall lighter look and will be important for child themes to account for in their styles.

Storefront 2.2 also adds subtle changes to typography, font weights, and button styles for a more minimalist, less-opinionated base design.

Storefront design refresh

These changes are in line with what Matt Mullenweg said about Storefront when we interviewed him in December. He said Storefront was due for a design update and has a lot of potential for improvement.

“With the Storefront theme there’s actually a lot we can do there to make it look like a really cool store out of the box, much like the default themes in WordPress,” Mullenweg said. “Part of the reason we change them every year is what was cool in 2012 is not cool in 2017. Fashions change, trends change. I think Woo should evolve Storefront in the same way. There’s kind of a look for independent stores right now. They’ve got a certain vibe. Let’s make it easy to do that vibe, so that you don’t have to be on Etsy or Amazon or one of the e-commerce monoliths to keep people coming to you and supporting your product.”

Whereas many Storefront users had to opt for a child theme in order to have a more product-focused homepage in the past, the design and user experience improvements in the 2.2.0 release make the theme a more compelling option for use by itself.

There are more than 90,000 stores using Storefront as a base for their sites lists eight child themes using Storefront as a parent and also has a directory of free and commercial child themes. This major release will likely affect all stores using these themes in one way or another. To avoid any surprise design updates, the WooCommerce team recommends that users test version 2.2.0 in a development environment before updating.


12 responses to “Storefront 2.2.0 Released, Includes Design Refresh and Major Improvements to New User Experience”

  1. Tiago did a great job releasing the two minor versions rather quickly! For those seeing this post that immediately clicked the update button, you’ll need to watch your widgets ~ both in the sidebar and footer.

    Check your media library:

    And delete the newly added pages of /contact/ and /about/

    Unfortunately, they weren’t immediately spotted in the initial 2.2.0

    All three of those issues were resolved in 2.2.2

  2. Well, installing it buggered up my entire site, store and all! Changed my menus, randomly added and removed widgets, and much more. I had to spend ages deleting bogus products and restoring the design I had just finalised, and it’s still not the same as it was. Not impressed.

    • There is a “thing” called “testing environment”, you should try it out with your future edits before applying them to your live website. ;)

  3. Same here. All widgets disappeared. side, footer, the lot. I’m not amused at all. Restoring just the theme files did not help. De database must be modified during upgrade.
    I have a very simple CSS in de Configurator to widen the left widget area if that matters… I do not use a child theme.
    Egbert Jan, NL

  4. I did install 2.2.0 on a test server yesterday and on one store the bottom 4 widgets and footer all disappeared.

    I had to restore the whole site from a backup to get it working as it should, I’ll re-try now 2.2.2 is out.

  5. Another observation. I use WooCommerce Product Archive Customiser (and other Woo addons) which seems useless now. The products do not scale anymore. I’m forced to use 3 on a row; 4 will not fit. Previously (2.1.8) that worked fine. Woo, what did you do??????????????
    Egbert Jan.NL

  6. 2.2.3 solved the disappearing widgets problem. I saw some anomalies with color or density of the text but that is easily repaired.

    The WooCommerce Product Archive Customiser still does not work. Woo Products customizer seems to conflict.


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