Oslo Theme Review – A Fresh Real Estate Theme by WPCasa
Oslo is a real estate WordPress theme by WPCasa, a developer known for producing professional real estate themes. Oslo was developed with a light-colored design, and it was designed for flexibility by including numerous widget areas, custom widgets, and a number of different settings for page templates, headers and more.
- Flexible Homepage Options – This theme comes with a ready-to-use homepage template that includes custom meta boxes and widgets for flexibility.
- Powerful Header Settings – Headers can be changed per page and can include individual images with text overlay, image sliders or listings.
- Live Customizer Options – This theme makes use of the live theme customizer by including options for logos, footers and color schemes.
- Flexible Widget Areas – This theme uses flexible widget areas that use drag-and-drop functionality to make building custom widget areas as simple as can be.
- Widgetized Listing Page – This theme comes with a ready-to-use layout for real estate listings, but you can build your own version of this page using the widgetized areas.
- Custom Widgets – This theme’s custom widgets include sliders, galleries, features boxes, newsletter boxes, call to actions and more.
- Developer Options – This theme comes with jQuery scripts and a jQuery editor, and it’s based on Bootstrap to make it a simple for developers to work with.
WPCasa offers a set of premium add-ons whose prices range from free to €19.
- Admin Map UI – This add-on enables the use of a click/drag-and-drop listing location on a map.
- Listing Labels – This simple add-on lets you add labels to specific listings to make them appear as featured listings.
- Expire Listings – This add-on lets you choose when a listing expires.
- Currency Converter – This add-on adds a function to your website that enables users to select their preferred currency that changes what currency is shown to them sitewide.
- Favorites – This add-on lets users save multiple listings, which they can use to compare against one another.
- Free Add-Ons – WPCasa offers nine free add-ons, including one for advanced search features, one for pricing tables and one that displays a list of agents on a single page.
This theme is easy to upload and install. All you need to do is upload and install the ZIP file you downloaded from WPCasa just as you would with any other premium theme. Once you activate the theme, you’ll be greeted with an alarming notice that displays a long list of recommended plugins.
However, if you click Begin Installing Plugins, you’ll find that only one plugin is actually required. These others are optional, though you do need a couple to install the theme’s demo content.
Importing Demo Content
If you try to use the theme’s one-click demo import option, you’ll see this notice if you don’t have a few of those plugins installed.
It’s just a matter of clicking the Run Demo Import button once you install and activate them. It’s a four-step process that goes through the following steps:
- Download attached images of example listings, posts, and pages from WPCasa’s demo server.
- Import options and theme modifications from the theme customizer.
- Import widgets and widget settings for this theme’s widget areas.
- Import custom options that include basic WordPress settings.
I had a little trouble importing the demo content due to the first step not confirming that it was done. I took a chance, refreshed (against the advice of the little “don’t navigate away from this page” alert), and it completed. Keep that in mind if you try to upload the demo content and find yourself waiting more than 10 minutes as it should only take a few.
Oslo comes with extensive documentation, which you can view online. The articles that make up the documentation go over how to use the theme’s key features, including the homepage, single page, and header options.
When you import the demo, you’ll find the theme creates over 20 different pages for you to use. These pages are various homepage layouts, pages for specific listings and more. It also adds a number of different blog posts and images to your site.
You’ll also see a Listings feature in the menu to the left. This feature works in the same way blog posts and pages work. You can create new listings, assign them locations, create listing types, create features for different listings as well as create categories for listings.
The New Listing page looks nearly identical to the backend of new blog posts and pages, but you’ll find where it differs when you scroll down. This is where pricing, listing type, and similar features can be added and configured.
This is also where you can add the business information of the real estate agent in charge of this listing:
Locations, Listing Types, Features, and Categories behave like WordPress’ built-in taxonomy system. This is where you can add specific locations, such as different parts of Oslo in this theme’s case, different listing types, such as apartment, house, etc., different features, such as air conditioning and floor types, and general categories.
Live Theme Customizer
This theme uses a moderate level of settings for the live theme customizer. It starts with the Site Identity section. This is where you can add things like text logos, regular logos, print logos to optimize your site for print and PDF versions, and favicons.
The Colors section is fairly simple. It lets you change various colors for the header, text, background, and accents.
There’s a slight overlay over the header by default, and you can deactivate it in this section to make the image in the header brighter, so the colors pop.
The Site Top section lets you change the information for the three columns that exist on the right side of the header. You can change their titles, the icon class they use from Font Awesome as well as what they say.
The Site Bottom section is simple. It contains two text editors, one for the left side of the bottom and one for the right side. This bottom element is separate from the rest of the footer.
You can add a header image in the Header Image section. There’s also a Background Image section that lets you do the same thing, only it changes your solid color background to whatever image you upload.
The Menus section is nearly the same as it is for any other theme, except this theme supports a secondary menu that sits in the top-right corner of the site.
Oslo comes with a long list of widgets, which you can see in the image above.
You can edit these widgets and manipulate where they’re placed using the usual widget areas.
You can customize these areas in real time using the live customizer.
There’s also an Export/Import section that lets you import and export customization settings for this theme.
Every page has a Header Settings screen option that allows you to change the header settings of each individual page. The Display setting lets you choose one of the following options:
- Do not display
- Page title
- Tagline & background
- Featured image & title
- Image slider
- Listings slider
New settings will display depending on what option you pick.
There are five templates to pick from:
- Default Template
- Full Width
- Listings Query
- Listings Query (Full Width)
The Home template is broken up into a number of different screen options:
- Home Search Form
- Home Carousel
- Home Call to Action #1
- Home Listings
- Home Call to Action #2
- Header Settings
These settings enable you to completely manipulate the way your homepage looks, giving you numerous possibilities.
Here are a few examples of completed homepages using the theme’s demo content.
Home Page Template & Gallery
Home Page Template & Tagline
Listings Query Template
The Listings Query template is what you’ll use to create a listing page. The demo comes with a number of different parent and child listing pages. Here’s an example of one:
Lastly, there’s a settings page that lets you choose between various settings for listings, such as choosing which page the theme sees as the primary Listings page and which currency displays for listings.
WPCasa offers two very similar packages for each of its themes. The Standard package is available for €49 while the Developer package is available for €69, as of July 2016. The Standard and Developer plans are very similar, except the Developer plan includes all of the premium add-ons this developer offers.
Your purchase includes one full year of premium support and updates as well as editable PHP and CSS files and layered PSD files.
Oslo was built for real estate, and it comes with plenty of features real estate agencies will surely love. The included templates for listings and one-click demo install feature make it easy for less code-savvy individuals to create well-designed websites jam-packed with features while the taxonomy system applied to listings makes life a breeze.
This system lets you keep new real estate listings organized by location, housing type, and features, making working with listings in the backend as simple as can be.