Headway 3 – The Drag-and-Drop WP Theme that Makes Designing Fun Again

You haven’t checked out the killer new premium WordPress theme from Headway yet?

What are you waiting for? Seriously!

This theme allows even a novice designer with – No tech or coding skills – the ability to crank out beautiful and professional themes in just minutes!! Just click on my link here, and you’ll see the true power of this amazing theme.

–>>Don’t believe all the hype about Headway 3, they’re just a little bit misleading.

Are you ready for the truth about Headway Theme 3.0?

An actual genuine Headway 3.0 Review (from someone who has basically NO tech, design or coding skills whatsoever) and just installed it himself.

Well, here it is.

This review is to help anyone make a decision whether Headway is the right WordPress theme to consider purchasing and using for your WP blogs.

I’ve actually purchased Headway right when they first came out, which was a few years ago.

So I’ve tried out all their versions (VS. 2.0 was the best), experimented with and tested just about everything that Headway has to offer, including their support. But I just installed HW 3.0.5 (their latest version) on this blog, the other day. Which was the first time I’ve experimented with it.

So here we go…

Who is Headway for?

With their pretty incredible drag-and-drop framework (pretty much the only one that does) this theme is targeted for WordPress developers and anyone who has NO technical or design skills.

I chose it for both of these reasons. The main reason being, I have no tech or design skills. Also, I figured I could make some extra money by building some sites for others in the future.

What makes Headway 3.0 awesome

This is one of the few WordPress frameworks out there that has the drag-and-drop features. This allows you to easily change the layout and design in literally a few minutes without touching any coding.

They’ve just added a brand new grid and block system, which I’ve never seen or experimented with before. It’s quite cool to play around with, and makes things pretty quick and simple.

Headway block system – drag & drop

The visual editor makes things pretty simple by having full control over your blogs design all in one place. Just point-and-click, and drag-and-drop. You can even change the colors easily and add graphics.

headway point & click visual editor
point and click – simple

Any license that Headway 3 wordpress theme has to offer allows you to use it on unlimited domains, which even includes creating sites for others.

It’s pretty easy to create a clean or simple wordpress theme even if you have NO tech, coding, or design skills. Just don’t be expecting to make it in a few minutes and chances are you’ll probably have to figure a few things out on your own.

What Headway 3.0 is Lacking

First off, their visual editor is pretty awesome. You’ll pretty much have all the features at your fingertips. But it’s quite complicated for anyone who is a newbie to WordPress, to designing, or has no technical skills whatsoever. It takes a good while to get familiar with, and definitely wasn’t as simple as it looks. But once you get it down, you should be good.

Just so you know, Head way 3 was just released a few months ago, so they are in the process of fixing any of the problems people have been having, which there is plenty of.

When I installed it to this blog just the other day I ran into quite a few small things that weren’t working with the other features of the blog.

For instance: I wanted to make all posts on the homepage an excerpt instead of showing the full post. When I did this, it made the entire blog posts excerpts and it wouldn’t even allow you to see the full post even if you wanted to.

I had to install a excerpts plugin to handle this for me. So basically, every small little thing not working well with the rest of the theme design, I would have to find ways around it. And yes, I did do most of this without touching the coding, but still it didn’t give me a lot of confidence in HW 3.

There’s NO MONEY Back guarantee. They got rid of that, so you better make sure you really want Headway 3 before you make a purchase. Cause all the whining in the world won’t get you a refund.

Support and future updates only last one year, then it’s a recurring yearly fee, I believe.

Who charges a recurring fee for support and updates on a wordpress theme anymore? Headway does!

They just made most of these changes a few months ago, so I was fortunate enough to get the lifetime updates and support.

Their support is Weak

Just about every time I used their support forums, no one would answer my questions, except for other Headway users who didn’t know the answers either. I would give them a day or two to check in to see, and still no responses from their so called (team of moderators) there to help us.

I would literally have to fix the problems myself, learn ways around them, or do without.

I used their email support a couple times. Let’s just say it didn’t impress me and wasn’t the fastest I’ve seen.

Now, if you really need help with something serious, or you’re ranting about how you’re going to leave Headway 3 for good in their support forums, then someone will probably help you right away. Just wanted to throw that in there.

Is there support lacking? Yes. But is it the worst I’ve seen? No.

Would I recommend Head way 3 to others, NO. At least not right now. Unless you have a little experience with WP and themes in general.

One thing that surprised me a little about the Headway 3 developers and support team is how they make a lot of excuses and will get an attitude sometimes. I’ve read their comments all over the internet on forums and blogs about why they seem to be having some trouble ever since their release of HW 3.

Don’t they know about proper business ethics? No one wants to hear excuses and you always treat your customers with the utter most respect, and you do whatever it takes to make them happy. Within reason, of course.

Comments are now turned off. 😉

Hey, this is just my opinion and experiences I’ve had with Headway 3. Others out there I’m sure are probably perfectly happy with them. So make sure you do some researching and asking around before you make a final decision. Because what do I know, I’m just a high school dropout.

If I could do it all over again

Hands down I would get the Genesis theme. Why?

Just about every Top Blogger in the industry uses this framework, and if they don’t, they are switching to it. I’ve seen it countless times in forums and blogs about the superior support Genesis owners get, and how happy they are about their decision of purchasing it. They also have a ton of excellent child themes to install, that’s if you can’t create the design you want by yourself.

Genesis is hands down the leader of innovative WordPress frameworks out right now, and they consist of a team that are incredibly skilled at what they do. Ask around, you’ll see.

Final thoughts about Headway 3

They do seem to be a bit behind right now because of all the problems they’ve had since releasing HW version 3.0.5 in such a hurry.

But they promise to fix these problems (including their support) and release a ton of new child themes which would make life much easier for us who don’t have any tech skills. I have been waiting for a few months now for their child themes to be released, -don’t hold your breath.

So, if in near the future they do stick to their word, Head way 3 could easily become a major player and a force to be reckoned with in the WordPress theme industry. But if they don’t, it’s all downhill from here.

Pin on PinterestDigg thisShare on StumbleUponShare on Google+Share on RedditShare on FacebookEmail this to someoneTweet about this on Twitter

10 Responses to Headway 3 – The Drag-and-Drop WP Theme that Makes Designing Fun Again

  1. If you’re getting excerpts on post pages, you haven’t configured the content block properly. ‘Entry content displays’ should be set to ‘show full entry’.

    Quote: “Just about every time I used their support forums, no one would answer my questions”

    If you post the link to the threads you started, or your user profile, I’ll take a look at them.

  2. Interesting post you got here Matthew. Never heard of Headway themes and web development.

    If it is great for people who don’t have coding knowledge and still produces top-notch design, then good for them. 🙂

    I do have coding knowledge and was able to customize my theme on my blog to the full extent. Excellent analysis in the article!

  3. your post is spot on. Headway really needs some business/management help. Their support is not only bad, but they are a bit terse/rude.
    It’s billed as a great way for someone with no tech skills to get going asap, but the reality is quite a bit different.
    if they had a few child themes, though, that would be a game changer. users could just tweak the child theme to do whatever they want.
    as-is, I’m quite frustrated with headway and also regret my decision to purchase.

  4. Headway theme is laughable,its too late for me,but for anyone looking for reviews….you wont have to look to hard to find nothing but poor comments about the frustrating little annoyances that plague headway themes.
    add to that there supposed moderators…LOL,and further add the rudeness of the glorified self righteous owner,Mr.G

    If the truth here stops one person from buying this theme…this post has done its job
    Bubye headway themes

  5. Interesting read. For what’s it?s worth I’ll relate my experience with being a member of the following:
    Headway themes:
    Joined in the early days, and initially spent hours installing, reinstalling and not producing anything that I couldn’t have done a lot easier with less pain with another theme. The support forum was often heated with dissatisfied members, who like me were having many problems with a piece of software which should have been labelled as alpha & shouldn?t have been released for members to do testing on. Grant (co-owner, I think) probably under pressure, often reacted in an unhelpful manner and at times was aggressive and defensive. Replies to many problems that members were experiencing were often blamed on the hosting service, or ?it doesn?t work with that browser?……unbelievable really, and one the reasons I?ve shelved Headway until such time as they become more professional about their business. They should be asking themselves why every other WordPress (that I use, anyway) never have a problem with browsers crashing the editor and not working on major hosting services. If a piece of software can’t work with major hosting companies and browsers they shouldn’t be selling it! You can’t view their forum unless you’re a member, and if you could you most likely wouldn’t want to be one. They have been promising an upgrade from Headway 2.0 to the current version 3.0 for many months, with no sign of one. They have also promised child themes going back months, again no sign of them. They say they are having a weekly screencast, which is delayed over and over again. Look I could go on and on, but the bottom line is don?t get sucked in by multiple sites giving it glowing reports. They have either never used the theme or in most cases are parasite affiliates who are only interested in getting commission on the sale. There are surely not going to make negative comments. DON?T buy it!

  6. It can’t be said too often or too loudly how rude and unhelpful the “moderators” on the Headway Theme forums are.

    I’ve been with Headway since the beginning and while the idea is the best out there, the actual product stopped being anywhere near functional when they released their 3.0 version. Prematurely. Without documentation. Barely working. With the same rude less than helpful help and support.

    Now we’re up to version 3.3. Verdict – spend you money somewhere else. You may not get the promise or a “0 coding” theme (not true either), but at least you’ll stand a pretty good chance of getting some decent support, where the support staff don’t yell at you and ask you to send them a pages long document of everything in your computer before they will tell you where to find a switch to change a color. Pity they don’t just create a decent manual.

    Sounds too good to be true, probably is.

    Stay away, spend your dollars somewhere else where they will be appreciated and at least buy you some support.

  7. Hi all. I just came upon this review and I realize it’s old but as there have been a few updates I wanted to weigh in. Disclosure: I am an affiliate (I run headway101.com) and I used to work for Headway, but quit in 2011.

    Version 3.5.2 (latest) has really stabilized the platform as a whole. Things are faster and users are finally able to import and export their customizations. Woo!

    I can’t comment for the support team or on overall support but the response seems to have picked up since I was working there and I find threads closed before I even get to thinking about them. Their protocols for handling requests make me kind of itchy, but they do have thousands of posts to deal with a day, so following format is important.

    I’d just like to say that from my perspective (I work with headway daily), they’re starting to fix their kinks and prioritize better. I think It’s up to the community to be less “for dummies” and more “learn how to do it yourself” with a guided approach.

    Just my thoughts 🙂

  8. The comments made in this article are very true. I love the fact that whenever a blogger has anything negative to say about the theme in a review, Gary, the paid forum moderator, or Corey, who makes a living skimming from the headway pond, are quick to defend it. Well, at least on these blogs, they don’t delete your posts. Can you say the same? LOL

  9. I bought Headway late last year to build a site or two and I’m mostly satisfied I’d say. It’s not as simple as you might think as there is a learning curve. But it does make styling your custom theme very much easier than any other system I’ve seen. Coloring, gradients, shadows, corners, hover-over and so on are all very simple.

    Where it’s not so good I’d say is the documentation which is simply not professional. There is no single written document explaining the entire system. Instead you get the “codex” which is variety of documents and videos often including info from previous versions. To the complete beginner this is confusing. However I’ve managed to work most of it out.

    I don’t think it’s as simple as saying it’s better to go with Genesis as that is quite a different beast. Styling is done using CSS. It’s not all that hard but it does involve editing code, using Hex values and all that. There is no Padding or Margin contols. You’d need to enter them as new CSS elements yourself. For a total beginner it could be a show stopper I think.

    I suspect that the effort of learning to use Genesis is probably a better long term choice as you’re learning your CSS and PHP skills in a standardised environment. In the short term a more relevant alternative to Headway would be something like Artisteer.

  10. Matthew, thank you SO much for writing this! It is extremely validating. I tried Thesis and almost had an aneurism…I am definitely a “web sites for Dummies” kind of person.

    Corey, I don’t agree that it’s time for software that bills itself as “drag and drop” and “easy” to be “learn how to do it yourself” instead of “for dummies.” They need to change their marketing if that is the case. Coding is also “learn how to do it yourself.” That’s not what I need!

    Headway, back in the day, was so great! For someone who can’t/won’t code, it was amazingly easy. It was definitely “for dummies” in a great way!

    Then, the sad day came. Headway 3.0. What on earth were they thinking? Why did they do it?

    For me, they took a great piece of software and broke it. They made it as complex and arcane as Thesis.

    I can not figure out how to use Headway 3.0 and was starting to criticize myself, thinking I just needed to plunge in and get on the learning curve again. But that does not make sense. I should not have to re-learn a piece of software I already invested time and money in learning, every time they decide to upgrade it.

    I’m relieved to read I’m not crazy or stupid. Headway 3 really is as arcane, complex and un-user-friendly as I thought. I will start looking for new solutions, because I can’t keep going down this path.

    I wish Headway would cut their losses, admit they were wrong, and go back to Headway 2!!!! But that’s a pipe dream.

    Sad for Headway, what a promising theme. Time to cut my losses and find a better solution.

    Thanks for clarifying things for me, Matthew, yourtd, Dave, Lee, and John!

Leave a reply