Vantage 4.0 Preview

We’re finally ready to reveal the new look and key features coming in Vantage 4.0! It’s by far our most advanced theme yet. In addition to a design refresh, the code under the hood has been almost completely rewritten.

Our main goal was to update the design and make the theme much easier to customize and use.

Promotional Video

Live Demo   

Update Mar 22, 2017 – Vantage 4.0.1 has been released and is available for purchase! We’re still updating our marketing material and docs so things will slowly be rolled out. Existing customers can use 4.0.x but won’t be able to upgrade an old 3.x site until 4.1.0 has been released (mid April). It will contain the migration script to ensure everything gets transferred over properly. Note: You won’t lose any data if you activate 4.0.x on your old site. Things like reviews and search will just not work properly.

We had our own punch list of items to enhance but also took constructive criticism from our customers. The most common requests were:

  • Update the outdated design
  • Make it easier to customize the look and layout
  • Better compatibility with plugins
  • More action and filter hooks for developers

We took this feedback to heart and did our best to include these requests (in addition to other items). Here’s a high-level list of what has changed.

  • Refreshed the UI to adopt modern aesthetics
  • Improved overall theme customization options
  • Better support for popular WordPress plugins
  • Improved extendability for 3rd party developers
  • Removed modules better fit as plugins (events, maps api, reviews, etc)
  • Stripped out features that caused option bloat
  • Added the Foundation Framework (v6)
  • Enhanced Google Maps with auto-complete location search, new marker options, and geocoding features
  • Replaced schema.org microdata with json-ld structured data format
  • Adopts WordPress theme best practices

We’re using the native WordPress customizer for easy color changes. Each page module can be moved to any position you like. For example, on the single listings page, you can move the photo gallery above the main content module or move the comments/reviews modules to the top of the page. In addition, sidebars can be moved to the left or right side…or even removed completely.

We’ve basically made it super easy to drag and drop content blocks (modules) into whatever location you like!

Also, we’ve added a nifty new feature to allow cover photo (aka large header photos) to be added to many different locations. These include the home page, single listings & categories, blog posts & categories, author profile pages, etc).

When Will this be Available?

There’s still a lot of work to be done and bugs keep popping up but we’re targeting an end of the year release launch.

Update Mar 18, 2017 – We’ve patched up the Updater API and fixed some bugs in 4.0. Look for 4.0.1 to appear next week for download. Note: Existing customers will be able to download it but the migration script from 3.x will not be available until 4.1.0. That means you can install it on a fresh copy of WordPress and everything will be setup correctly but using it on your existing 3.x site, it won’t work properly.

Update Mar 11, 2017 – We had to pull the Vantage 4.0 release down due to some unforeseen issues with our Updater API. The plan was to allow existing customers using 3.x (who didn’t want to upgrade) to manually download 4.x so the auto update wouldn’t notify them of an update and on click, blow away their existing site. Turns out it wasn’t working correctly and the API needs some additional work. We chose to err on the side of caution so more customers wouldn’t be affected. We apologize for this “false start” and will be working the next several days to resolve the issue. If all goes well, we will re-release 4.0 later next week.

Update Mar 9, 2017 – Vantage 4.0.0 has been released! We’re still updating our marketing material and docs so things will slowly be rolled out. In the meantime, you can download it and tinker with it.

Update Feb 22, 2017 – We’re back to Vantage work after a few weeks off. Unfortunately during these past few days our Jenkins CI server crashed and we had to completely rebuild it. Artem and I spent several days working on that instead of Vantage code. 🙁 That server is very important as it runs tests and automatically builds our products into .zip files (from our Github repos) to deploy to our file hosting server (where you download things from). Without this server working, we couldn’t release any of our themes. So….we’re back online finally. So from here, we expect another two more weeks of development time before release. That puts us at March 9th, 2017.

Update Jan 29, 2017 – I’m going to be honest. We’re completely burnt out and need a break. The stress, pressure, anxiety and lack of sleep is taking a toll on our bodies. Our dev team (myself and Artem) have been working so hard on this release non-stop for months and we physically cannot continue coding and testing until we get a few weeks break. I hope everyone understands and is able to wait a bit longer (two weeks break plus one-two weeks more dev time). It’s painful, I know but we’re actually human and need some time to recover. Thank you for understanding.

Update Jan 14, 2017 – We’re really really trying to get this launched and we’re sooo close….however, last minute bugs keep popping up which push back our launch date (sorry sorry sorry!). We also have some personal things that are taking us away from work time (e.g. my 11 month old daughter is teething so sleep = very little).

Sorry to disappoint — especially for those waiting to start their new site. Don’t worry, we’ll have a special promotion for you once we launch! Keep checking back on this post for updates.

Jan 6th, 2017 Update – The Vantage 4.0 demo is now live! Disclaimer: It’s a work in progress so things may change as we make updates or fixes. The official demo with access to a user account and the backend, will be available once we launch later this month.

Update Dec 21, 2016 – With the holiday season in full swing and some technical setbacks, we won’t be able to deliver 4.0 before year-end. We are very disappointed as we hoped to release it next week. The good news is, we’ll have a public demo available soon for everyone to check out. New ETA? With Christmas and New Year holidays this week and next, our team will be taking a much needed break. We’ve been working ’round the clock on 4.0 so it’s time to recharge our batteries and then return for a final sprint to finish up the theme. With that being said, January 15th is our new target date.

Is it a Free Upgrade?

Yes, if you’ve got an active subscription to either Vantage or Club or are a legacy customer (with lifetime updates), the upgrade will be free. If your subscription has lapsed, you can easily renew once 4.0 comes out and get access right away.

Here are some screenshots (subject to change):

Single Listing Page

vantage-40-single-listing

Single Listing Contact Owner

vantage-40-contact-owner

Listings Category Page

vantage-40-category-results

Single Blog Post

vantage-40-single-post

Manage Listings Page

vantage-40-my-listings

Edit Profile Page

vantage-40-edit-profile

Public Profile Page

vantage-40-view-profile

Responsive Design View

vantage-40-responsive

Admin Setup Guide Page

vantage-40-admin-splash-page

So what do you think? We’d love to hear your feedback!

Your rating: 5
Rating: 4.5 - 35 votes

 Comments (457)

  • customer
    gilano

    David, I love your products! I am constructing an environment with 3 sites powered by your systems: classipress, vantage and JobRoller. I finished to configure Vantage at a multisite wordpress instalation. I will configure Classipress now. I don’t tested yet if an user logged in in one site, will be logged in an other automaticaly. I even don’t know if an user that make a register in one site, will be registered at the others. If it ins’t possible, will be very interesting a feature that be possible to a single sign on in all AppThemes installed at a same multisite wordpress installation. I hope you think it interesting.Thanks!

    Like
    David likes this.
    • author
      David

      That’s great to hear you’re using several of our themes! If all themes are installed on WordPress Multisite, then yes, they’ll be logged in across all themes.

  • customer
    tradeamillion

    do you have a live demo of latest updates?

    nice design updates but not sure if that should be your real focus, anybody could upload a child design
    and i bet if i do the update of the theme i am going to spend days on that new css and html…

    functions and payement system is been a big problem since years on that theme, had to rewrite the whole backend

    but dont get me wrong i like those new update you did

    • author
      David

      No public demo yet.

      Sorry to hear you had trouble with some functions and our payment system. I’m not aware of any outstanding issues. Instead of rewriting it yourself, you should’ve submitted a Github pull request and collaborated with our team.

      We’d be happy to give you read access to our repos. Give me your Github username and I’ll get you setup.

  • customer
    yossie

    Hi,
    What about Anti spam option (captcha) in
    Single Listing Contact Owner

    • author
      David

      ReCaptcha hasn’t been very effective for us so instead, we built our own spam honeypot which will be included in 4.0 (example).

      It’s basically an additional field which is hidden by css from regular users. If the value is submitted, it typically means it’s spam and rejected.

      We use this on our own website and it works quite well.

      Like
      2 people like this.
  • kennyfoster

    When exactly will this be out ????

    Like
    kennyfoster likes this.
    • author
      David

      We’re targeting a release by the end of the year.

      Like
      kennyfoster likes this.
  • Djamel

    Hi,

    I would like to know when it will be available thank you.

  • sergio

    Thanks a lot for the news, for a long time we waited for this update, which I would like to modify the individual map so that when selecting it we send it directly to the gps of the mobile (google maps or maps ios) as it is very annoying to have to be entering Our location manually. I hope and take note thank you.

    • author
      David

      Sounds like a nice feature request. If you could give me working example or screenshot of what you mean by “send it directly to the GPS of the mobile”, that would help us better understand the requirements.

      • sergio

        As the function of get directions on map of mapsupreme. Leave the link in the examplehttp://giphy.com/gifs/l0Hlv75pAaXzilMyI

        • author
          David

          Thanks! Very cool. So basically a link from the business marker that opens up Google maps on your mobile device and starts GPS directions.

          Something we could certainly consider for a future release….or maybe this plugin developer will add it to 4.0 in his own separate plugin. 😉

          Like
          Anonymous likes this.
  • customer
    ezau

    Thanks for the update David. Am looking forward to testing it out 🙂

    Like
    David likes this.
  • f4darg

    I haven’t been following for a while but was wondering if you have done anything to add a Home Page Listing Limit to Vantage, since I made my original purchase a few years ago? Thanks.

  • Djamel

    Hello David,

    I have three questions:

    Will it be possible to combine Vantage with Classipress in order to have a network ads/directory ?
    Have you include a multi-critera search with the new version ?
    Will it be compatible with WPML plugin ?

    Thank you for your answer

    • author
      David

      Since Vantage and ClassiPress are both themes, you can’t really combine them on the same site. If you use WordPress multisite though, it would be a single sign-on and two separate sites in the same network.

      We’ve got a search filter in the sidebar of the results page.

      Yes, we plan on making it compatible with WPML.

      Like
      Anonymous likes this.
  • Rocco

    Hello, if I buy now Vantage the future update will be free?

    • author
      David

      Yes, any updates will be free during your subscription period (12 months) after which, you can renew.

  • customer
    johnjohnjohn

    Hello

    will you increase speed in Vantage 4? I am using Vantage 3.0.8 with more than 140.000 listings and it is slow in backend and frontend (though I have dedicated server). It is getting slower and slower since 60.000 listings, and I would like to go up to 300.000 listings…

    This new version looks nice !

    John

    • author
      David

      Performance in 4.0 is definitely better but we haven’t stress tested it against that many listings.

      If the backend is also slow, it’s a WordPress performance issue….not specifically Vantage.

      I’d recommend looking into a caching plugin like W3 Total Cache or even server caching since you’ve got a dedicated server.

      We use nginx proxy as our caching layer but there’s other solutions like memcached, varnish, etc.

  • 2113

    I am so excited about for this release! I was getting ready to start building my site with Vantage after being on hold for a while, but the look of vantage was starting to really get stale which was a turnoff. The screenshots of the new version look amazing and I can’t wait to get the release and get started!

    Thanks for the update.

    Like
    David likes this.
  • Fabio

    David, these removed modules (events, reviews, etc.) will be provided as plugins?Any additional costs?

    • author
      David

      The reviews module will be replaced by Critic. The events module will need to be converted into a plugin but it’s not a high priority for us since we’re focusing more on core theme functionality vs add-ons.

      Like
      Anonymous likes this.
      • Fabio

        I’m sorry David, but how this change could be beneficial for us, the clients of AppThemes? As I understand, a directory theme must-have a few functions to be considered one in the first place.
        So if you will charge separately for a review plugin, a core function of any directory, which are the real advantage for us?
        It gets the impression AppThemes is trying some kind of sales scheme, charging separately for many basic features. While other directory themes on the market provide most of the basic features that all directory owners are looking for in a single package.
        AppThemes is failing to add value to the positives of its software to become a mere another theme directory.

        • author
          David

          We’re moving modules like reviews into plugins because it’s easier to manage and can be shared across all our themes. For example, if a new feature is added to Critic (our reviews plugin), all themes benefit immediately. If we keep reviews within Vantage, we have to update it separately and do a full theme release.

          If you’re an existing customer (prior to the 4.0 release), you’ll get the reviews plugin for free.

  • Marko

    Hi David,

    Thanks to go foward with appthemes !

    After Vantage and Classipress , I suggest to have a revamp for the taskerr them cause there are a lot of new features that could be added.

    What do you think and What do you plan to upgrade ?

    See an example I found on the net : http://www.fiverr.com

  • customer
    i2ventures

    Hi, I bought Vantage a few months ago hoping to get my hands on the new one in September. Now it is expect end of year which is further disappointment. As the changes seem quite big is it worth getting started with version 3? And would a 3.0.8 version upgrade seamlessly to version 4 when it is available?

    • author
      David

      The upgrade from previous versions won’t be seamless. 4.0 is such a huge change and we’re still testing how upgrades will work. If you have the option, it’s better to wait for 4.0.

  • customer
    André

    Excellent work guys!!!
    I’m really glad to hear that you are revamping Vantage and accepted some customer’s suggestion!
    We definitely were expecting some news from you!

    I’d like to contribute with Vantage 4.0 suggesting some features I’d love to see in the product in the next or later:
    1. Enhance the ability to filter results as ClassiPress does or something quite similar. The Vantage’s filter (Refine Search Filter) is poor and based only in Categories and Distance (and distance not based in the user’s position! Not helpful!). It does not include filters based in custom fields or fields like country/city/district/region (Similar to the unsupported plugin “Dynamic Multi Level Fields”).
    2. Enhance Address Field splitting it in two (Complementary Address + Address Line 2) adding extra information to identify the exact place (E.g.: Apartment #204, Room #204 and so on);
    3. Enhance field “Near (city, country)” enabling autocomplete function based on Google Maps API (Address, District, City, State, and so on like Google Maps) and identify the actual user’s position with a push of a button. So, users can type the exact address or push an icon to identify and load its position using GPS coordinates or IP, allowing them to geolocate businesses close to them or near a specific address. Similar to plugin “User Locator” that is not supported anymore;
    4. Enhance Widget Vantage Multiple Listings/Events Map to show a round blue icon showing the current users position based in the GPS coordinates (Geolocation);
    5. Enhance Widget Vantage Multiple Listings/Events Map to show multiple listings located at the same building. Similar to the plugin “Map Supreme”;
    6. Enhance field “Search For” to show a list of possible entries/listings with the string being typed. Similar to the plugin “Vantage Search Suggest”.
    7. Enhance Vantage with a dynamic mechanism to let insert URLs associated with an icon like Waze, Google Maps Site link, Google Maps Mobile App Link, Uber, WhatsApp and so on;
    8. Grid or List view. Similar to theme Directory for Vantage.
    9. Facebook “Like and Share” button that is controlled by own Facebook.
    10. Feature to synchronize business information to contacts (Mobile Apps – Contacts)

    I’d like to give one last suggestion: Why not embracing good plugins, like mentioned in the topics above, refactoring and making them more reliable like “AppThemes Native Plugins” or “Certified by Appthemes”? So, decreasing the possibility of conflicts with Appthemes themes, WordPress, others third party plugins and making them more reliable. It’s much more convenient for customers order such kind of plugins.

    Like
    David likes this.
    • author
      David

      Thanks for all the great feedback! The search in 4.0 is 10x better. The radius search is based on lat/long coordinates vs a fuzzy search of location in earlier versions.

      Wait until 4.0 is released and see how it works. Then we’ll be open to new feature requests. 😉

      Like
      André likes this.
    • customer
      André

      David,

      How can AppThemes help/improve the themes to avoid sending e-mail addresses info when a listing owner is contacted via listing contact form? I’ve noticed that some robots and real state agents have used the themes to bother our users via this feature, and then, our users set our company e-mail as spam when their intents are to block only the spammer. This has caused the fast increase of “Undelivered Mail Returned to Sender” and turning the themes useless, because the owner can’t be reached when a real user trying to truly contact with real need or your listings are expiring decreasing the potencial renewal!

      I know a very good system that handles better such functionality and I’d like to share with you in private as an good example of such feature. It only notifies the listing owner that there is an “off-line chat message unread” waiting for him to be read and answered (at the site via off-line chat) or sends only an e-mail with name, telephone and message to let the listing owner know about what is the interest on his listing letting him to be able to call him back.

      • author
        David

        Not sure I fully understand the issue. Anyhow, send us a message and ask to forward it to me.

        Like
        André likes this.
        • customer
          André

          I forgot to mention 2 more functionalities that I’d like to see in your product:
          1) reCaptcha on the listing contact form at Vantage;
          2) Widget or custom field allowing the user to inform hours of operation like in Google Business.

          Obs.: I’ve sent the e-mail you asked for.

          Regards,
          André

        • customer
          André

          David,

          Rewriting the inquiry.

          How can AppThemes help/improve the themes to avoid sending user e-mail address info when a listing owner is contacted via listing contact form?
          The listing owner or general user should not know each others e-mail. When the listing owner answers the e-mail, the general user will know its e-mail (That’s the problem when the general user is robots or real state agends, spammers).

          I have seen some systems that are intermediating the conversation between listing owner and general users without letting them knowing their e-mails (the system I shared with you in private (“chat”) or Customer service software and support ticket system (e.g. Zendesk).

          Just for info (Contact form e-mail):

          ________________________________________________________________________________
          field To:
          listingowner@xpto.com.br

          field From:
          General User Name

          field Reply-To:
          noreply@siteurl.com.br,
          General User Name
          ________________________________________________________________________________
          field Body:

          Someone is interested in your ad: http://www.siteurl.com.br/ads/apartment
          Alguém está interessado em seu anúncio:

          Name: General User Name
          E-mail: generaluser@abcd.com.br

          “I’d like to know more details about the apartment. What’s your telephone number?
          I’m waiting your answer. Thank you!”
          ________________________________________________________________________________

          • author
            David

            It’s a good idea but not something easy to implement. Having a masked “reply to” email address requires some custom email server changes.

            We could show a different “reply to” email address and the actual one is real. But that’s only a cosmetic thing…they could still figure out the email address by viewing the raw email header.

  • customer
    ralmoor

    Hello

    Will custom forms have a date picker included in them? I had to code my own for previous vantage releases. Thanks

  • customer
    anunciate

    Looks great i try a few of other directories themes and always come back to vantage, i was talking with my partner we have a small startup mobile app builder if you guys want we can work togheter on making a template to integrate vantage into an android and iphone app here is the site http://mobidonia.com

    Like
    2 people like this.
    • customer
      André

      Great to hear that! I’ll take a look at, because I’m interested to deliver a mobile app integrated to Vantage and ClassiPress…

      Like
      Anonymous likes this.
    • guiadelamujer

      Hi anunciate, im interested in making an app out of my vantage directory, but the thing is i need this to be distance related, when someone install the app in their phone, to show the closest business in distance, can that be achieved using mobidonia? saludos

      Like
      Anonymous likes this.
  • Anurag

    Go for it (mobile app) I will be first to buy it in the era a mobile app is essential and vantage is missing it
    Anurag

    Like
    2 people like this.
  • Magic OZ

    Does the new update include a large full width map on the front page.

    OZ

    • author
      David

      Not in the initial release. If it’s a popular request, we’ll build it into a home page widget.

      Like
      malkie likes this.
  • Richard Staddon

    If I buy and the 12 months have passed do I still get a change to send a ticket If I have a problem.

    Richard

    Like
    Anonymous likes this.
  • customer
    malkie

    I think a “large full width map on the front page.” is really needed for many directory sites.

  • customer
    danyz

    Gosh! I was working on a total restyle of my vantage website since a couple of months and was going to release it on jan. 2017, but now I’ll have to rework the whole thing on version 4.0!!! Ouch!

    However I’m really glad to hear this new version is coming out with fixes and improvements I was waiting since a couple of years. Please work hard on it and release it very fast, I stopped the restyle to wait for this new version. Any idea on a precise date it will be released?

    • author
      David

      We’re definitely working hard on it! Non stop coding even during the holidays. 🙁

      Like I mentioned in the post, we’re targeting an end of the year release but no promises. We would rather delay than launch with lots of bugs.

      Like
      2 people like this.
  • Patrick

    Hi,

    A couple questions if I may please.

    1. When exactly with this be ready? I need to get my directory site up asap. I don’t want to set it up as your old version and then switch as there will likely be glitches. I say exactly because I need to know or I’ll have to buy a different theme because I’ve read that it was going to be Sept.

    2. Is that really how the mobile responsiveness will look? That doesn’t look good at all from that screen shot.

    • author
      David

      1. We’re targeting an EOY release. We understand if you can’t wait to get your site setup and go with another solution.
      2. The screenshot doesn’t do it justice. That’s with the slide out sidebar open. The main content to the right looks fine when the sidebar is closed up.

  • Kenny

    Hey guys I’m getting to launch but I would really like to know exactly when this will be ready???

Discussion is closed.