When it comes to building your WordPress site, you have several options. You can choose to start with WordPress.com, find a host and create a self-hosted site, or do it all on a hosted platform like Themecloud.io. The choice is yours.
I’m not going to spend time in this review comparing the three, nor going over the pros and cons. Instead, I want to introduce you to a platform where you can get WordPress managed hosting and the tools to build your custom site, all without knowing code.
Now you may be saying, well, this is nothing new. But each platform that comes out has its own unique features and options for you to explore. And with Themecloud.io’s 15-day free trial, that is exactly what you can do: explore.
Some platforms like this one limit you to just their own specific themes and installed plugins, but with Themecloud.io, you can use any theme or plugin on your site. Do check out their themes, though, because many have the Live Composer built into the homepage, which allows you to make easier customizations than if you were starting from scratch.
This service is so robust that I couldn’t possibly cover everything in this review, so my aim is to give you a taste of what you can expect and, hopefully, entice you to give it a try. Check out this video and learn about what Themecloud.io can do for you:
In these highlights, I touch on some of the basic features that I shared in the video. I would recommend watching the video first and using these as reference points.
On their site, they list all their features. There’s quite a bit to tempt you here and on the hosting side of things, backups, restores, security and speed are strengths you will want to pay particular attention to.
The three levels of pricing give you a good start and allow you to easily scale your site and your plan as you grow.
It’s easy to do. All they ask for is your email, username and password. There is a 15-day trial, no credit card required, and once submitted, it takes just a few minutes before your selected theme is installed.
As I mentioned, they have their own selection of themes that you can choose to use or not.
The cool thing is that you can preview any of these themes before you join and even test drive them first.
Your Themecloud Dashboard
Once you are set up with your site, you will see all sites listed in your dashboard, where you can visit the site, go directly to your WordPress admin or open up the settings attributed to your site.
With your hosting, you get daily backups, which are very important. You can restore the backup easily and duplicate it. Another cool feature is the ability to preview any backup. Many times something happens or you make changes and you just don’t remember which day it was. This conveniently solves that problem.
And a few various settings for specific needs:
You can view which plan you are on and easily upgrade when necessary:
You can also enable easy access to your account and sites for your team:
Your WordPress Dashboard
Your site will function the same as any WordPress site and the dashboard will look very familiar to you. There is no new user interface to learn. You will notice that depending on your theme, and with the Live Composer as part of this platform, those settings will be found in your dashboard as well.
Unlike some other platforms, you won’t find a bunch of plugins automatically installed. Only the ones that complement the platform and/or are included in the theme’s functionality. You can add more plugins as needed, as you would on any other WordPress site.
Live Composer and Other Settings
There are a few other settings that I shared in the video.
Several are included with the Live Composer. You can peruse these to see all the options you have. One thing to note here is that you will be able to control which modules appear or are hidden when you are in the Live Composer. As you will see in another screenshot, this will help you declutter your window by removing unnecessary options.
Extensions & Themes
You have options for additional extensions, both free and paid. I imagine this list will be growing over time.
There are many options with the Live Composer. I am going to just touch on a few basics here. If you want to see this in action, I would suggest watching the video.
If, for example, we go into the homepage, scroll down to the services, and activate the composer, our page now looks like this, with several settings at the bottom. By default, the first settings are all the modules you have to add to your page. When I showed you the settings above for displaying or hiding, this is what I was talking about. Leaving them all enabled will require some horizontal scrolling.
And if we click on any module in the section, we get additional settings.
Within the module itself you have some other options: Duplicate, Drag to Move, Width and Delete.
And depending on how the module is set up, you can do live editing right there and then.
If we go to another section, you will see that you can edit the entire section, but not each profile.
To edit each one of these separately, you would need to go into your dashboard and click on Staff.
The four highlighted are what shows up on the homepage. This is done by adding them to a category and choosing that category in the Live Composer on the homepage.
And if you return to the single staff entry and click edit to open any of them, you find settings that are pulled in both for the homepage and for the single staff page.
Note that this particular feature is for this theme and the options you get will depend on the theme you choose. I just wanted to share one of these with you for a little better understanding of the homepage setup when you are using the Live Composer.
Adding a Module
Adding a module to a page is very easy to do. I would recommend that you watch the video to see how that is done.
Templates are a powerful tool and part of the Live Composer features.
You have several options when creating a new template. You have a mix of templates to choose from that come with the theme via this platform, or any that you have created yourself. This is a huge part of the flexibility you have to create custom sites without knowing code.
You can edit the template in one of two ways.
Change the Template Itself
Edit the Template via the Live Composer
Here you can actually edit the layout, deleting and adding modules to your heart’s content.
As I mentioned in the video and in the highlights, I’ve only touched on the true power behind the Themecloud.io platform. For many people, especially if you want to expand your control over customizing your website or your clients’ websites, a platform like this is a good option. Of course, as always, you need to take into consideration your own needs and what will work best for you in both the short and long-run.
Is it simple? That depends. From experience with thousands of users, some people catch on to site builders easily, while others find there is a bit more of a learning curve than they expected. All of our brains are wired differently when it comes to this technical stuff. That is why I love the fact that you can take a 15-day trial and give Themecloud.io a serious workout before committing. With solid managed WordPress hosting and a ton of features and options, it may just be the right solution for you.