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Responsive design with layout controls. Meet Merchant.

Written by Mark Forrester on April 12, 2012 Product News.

Merchant is the brain child of our in-house pixel wrangler Mr Cobus Bester. His idea was to design a theme with a unique adaptive layout with advanced customization controls, to help equally highlight all the business modules of our popular themes, along with the capabilities of showcasing a portfolio, blog and mini-features with JS Masonry. Think of it as an alternative to some of the popular hosted solutions for designers showcasing portfolios and selling prints.

Lots of responsive treats, alternate styles and layout controls.

Based on the findings of Whitelight, Merchant is also designed with the WooComponent widgetized homepage functionality. What does this mean? You can easily place any of the homepage modules in any order, excluding or including particular ones. Your homepage is your “canvas” to do what you like with.

Setting up exactly want you want to display on the homepage is easy thanks to the WooComponent widgets.

Once Cobus was happy with the final design Jeff added some neat layout controls giving you creative reigns as to how your site should scale – e.g. do you want the menu system in the header or on the sidebar, fixed or scrollable. The team also added some neat JS Masonry functionality to help create a perfectly fluid layout for the blog, portfolio and mini-feature modules.

Set your website container width in the theme options, if your browser is set to wider than the website container width the header menu will optionally change to a fixed/scroll sidebar menu system.

Like the name suggests the theme is perfect for designers/shop owners/retailers wanting to showcase their merchandise in a clean design. Should you be expecting WooCommerce support for such a theme then wait till next week for the child theme with pixel perfect styling support. We need to give you something to look forward to right?

There truly is loads to this theme so check our the demo. As always let us know your thoughts, we always value your feedback and strive towards fulfilling as many of your requests as we possibly can.

Discount Coupon

Grab Merchant with a 12% discount coupon, valid until 19th April, 2012. Just use MERCHANT12 as your coupon code on checkout.


54 Responses

  1. Laurent
    April 12, 2012 at 4:15 pm #

    Great work ! ๐Ÿ™‚
    But the typo is somewhat a problem (top menu in particular)

    • Mark Forrester
      April 12, 2012 at 4:47 pm #

      We are looking into the text rendering issue asap.

      • pedro67
        April 12, 2012 at 4:50 pm #

        same issue on all of the text. Using Chrome browser. On firefox works fine

        • Laurent
          April 12, 2012 at 4:51 pm #

          I guess it’s only on Chrome for Windows.

          • Mark Forrester
            April 12, 2012 at 4:55 pm #

            What you doing on Windows? ๐Ÿ˜‰

  2. Kristoffer
    April 12, 2012 at 4:44 pm #

    Great theme, great design!
    Finally one that isn’t WooCommerce, but WooThemes again ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I really, really love the ability to have a vertical menu, and not just a horizontal one. 99 % of the WP themes out there ships with a horizontal one, which I find irritating. Always wanted a vertical one, but takes a lot of hacking to replace a themes menu with another one. Hoping to see that option more often when it comes to your themes (as often as the design allows for it at least).

    Only thing missing in your themes compared with shops like RocketTheme and YooTheme is more widgetized areas. That would give aftermarket designers and hobby-wooers like me even more ways to personalize their website. ๐Ÿ™‚


  3. Blake Imeson
    April 12, 2012 at 4:47 pm #

    Nice theme but the typography is a disaster. Case in point: (was like that on Firefox and Chrome)

    • Cobus Bester
      April 12, 2012 at 5:25 pm #

      Hi, thanks for pointing that out. It does seem to be only on Windows? Must be something with the font rendering there. Will have this sorted ASAP.

      • mash
        April 13, 2012 at 12:20 am #

        Its a disaster on my mac in safari & chrome.

      • Garrett
        April 13, 2012 at 1:39 pm #

        Disaster for me, too. Firefox 11.0 on PC, Windows 7.

  4. Henrik Blomgren
    April 12, 2012 at 5:01 pm #

    I am a bit dissapointed actually. Not with the theme itself, but your widget “tabs” looks just horrible here. Or at least it did when I watched it.

    Otherwise it looks nice. Iร‚ยดd love to know how you have coded the timeline page. You canร‚ยดt “update” the older themes with that type of timeline ๐Ÿ™‚ It has always been one of the things I would love to learn how to code.

    So nice work. Keep it up ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Henrik Blomgren
      April 13, 2012 at 3:35 pm #

      Yay you modified the theme so that the tabs look marvelous!! Great job!

  5. Croata
    April 12, 2012 at 5:15 pm #

    the theme is beautiful , but typography , is broken !!!

  6. Ronny
    April 12, 2012 at 5:53 pm #

    You do not dare even to criticize, because it is ignored anyway.
    So I think the theme again very boring and the writing is hardly recognizable.

    Next is probably a Woocommerce then right?

  7. Nacho
    April 12, 2012 at 6:14 pm #

    By far the best theme that you have. Excellent work.

  8. Charley
    April 12, 2012 at 6:32 pm #

    I really like this design and will get this one once the typography issue is resolved. Great work Woo Ninjas!

  9. el Rafa
    April 12, 2012 at 6:38 pm #

    Overall great job!
    However, the menu typography *does* look unacceptably chunky and hard to read, even on Safari 5.1.5 (Mac).
    Screen shot:

    Perhaps the hidden intent is to get people to actually customize the theme beyond the default… XD

  10. Cobus Bester
    April 12, 2012 at 7:06 pm #

    Thanks for all the feedback guys. ๐Ÿ™‚

    For those having font issues, we have determined that it is an issue with Windows font rendering and @font-face. If you take a look at this page – – (actual Google Fonts listing for the font) in Windows, you will see that the rendering is just as bad. (Screenshot –

    So we will need to swap the font out with a different one. We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused. The issue will be resolved within the next 24 hours.

    • Rahul Sharma
      April 12, 2012 at 10:45 pm #

      Its cool bro! After you replace the fonts… this theme will be a 100% perfect ๐Ÿ˜€

  11. Eduardo Alberto
    April 12, 2012 at 7:57 pm #

    Woocommerce support would be awesome. Nice theme by the way.

  12. Phillip Retay
    April 12, 2012 at 9:17 pm #

    Awesome job guys! It is going to work great for my client.

  13. Serg
    April 12, 2012 at 9:34 pm #

    Great work wooteam! I will be trying this theme next week and give some feedback on the way:)

  14. Scott Webb
    April 12, 2012 at 10:29 pm #

    This is one you might need to play with in the playground! It’s quite outstanding

  15. Alejandro Carrillo
    April 12, 2012 at 10:41 pm #

    Hi, guys, really awesome work, and something different, also.

    I have some trouble, though… not with the font but when the post is to short… take a look to this:



    • el Rafa
      April 13, 2012 at 9:46 am #

      Alejandro, I recommend post this as a bug in the forums.

  16. Alex
    April 12, 2012 at 11:22 pm #

    Cool. Love the vertical menu on the side.
    This theme will work great with those clients with long logos that won’t fit in horizontal banners!

    Thank woo

  17. Suren H
    April 13, 2012 at 2:52 am #


    It looks excellent! with responsive design. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Well done WooTeam!

  18. nichs
    April 13, 2012 at 9:43 am #

    excellent, been looking forward to this one, and it’s worth the wait.
    One thing, is there a slider option for multi images in a portfolio section, instead of a long page full of single images?

    • Cobus Bester
      April 13, 2012 at 12:48 pm #

      No, not currently. We will look into adding this as possible option to the portfolio section in the future, as it has been requested before.

      • Don Dowell
        April 19, 2012 at 8:17 pm #

        Another vote for the slider option in the portfolio, it really limits an otherwise awesome theme. Need it for Whitelight too ๐Ÿ™‚

  19. John
    April 13, 2012 at 1:49 pm #

    Don’t want to be an “i told you so” but i did mention the problem with quicksand on the teaser post ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Anyway – it looks like an absolutely awesome theme which i have been desperate to get my hands on, so i’ll be taking it for a spin soon.

    Also looking forward to the woocommerce child – keep up the good work!

    • Cobus Bester
      April 13, 2012 at 2:55 pm #

      I missed that comment of yours on the teaser post ๐Ÿ™ Wish I had seen it, would’ve saved me some trouble!

      Theme has been updated with a different font now.

      • John
        April 13, 2012 at 3:16 pm #

        Glad to see you put a new font in – this was never an issue for me personally as i modify things anyway, but didn’t want you to release such a cool theme that was let-down by ugly type ๐Ÿ™‚

  20. J Wilson
    April 13, 2012 at 2:15 pm #

    I have been complaining for months about the lack of a commercial business theme, so I am VERY pleased to finally see one. I STILL want Woo Commerce to be put into a separate member ship and our prices reduced.

    However, I am going to give this a go even if it lacks a lot of the flexible things I was asking for in a business theme.

    I am going to test this for Local Optimization, it would be good if Woo did one specifically for local businesses, Woo can email me if you need the metrics.

    Thanks for this, now we need some more!

    Also you need to change the tags on the themes that show in your business category.

  21. Cobus Bester
    April 13, 2012 at 2:53 pm #

    Hi all,

    The font issue has been resolved. We opted to replace Quicksand with Muli (, which renders much better on Windows.

    This update is available in Merchant 1.0.1

    PS If you still see the old font on our demo, try clearing your browser cache ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Laurent
      April 13, 2012 at 2:55 pm #

      Great ! MUCH better indeed ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • Cobus Bester
        April 13, 2012 at 3:01 pm #

        ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks!

  22. Wes
    April 13, 2012 at 8:50 pm #

    In the demo, and in the instance I just set up, the portfolio items on the homepage just reload the page when clicked. I inspected the source in Chrome and Safari (on mac) and it looks like the href attribute on the portfolio item link is not being set.

    • Cobus Bester
      April 16, 2012 at 11:43 am #

      Hi Wes, thanks for pointing that out. I have fixed that little bug and updated the theme to V1.0.2 ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. Brandi
    April 13, 2012 at 9:00 pm #

    Is a woocommerce child in the works?

    • John
      April 13, 2012 at 11:40 pm #

      I believe the woocommerce child is coming next week!

  24. Dale Wright
    April 14, 2012 at 2:43 pm #

    Great theme. Already using on a few in development client sites.

    Could you let me know if you plan to build a Woocommerce child them? and if so, when? Im desperate for a products grid on the homepage, just above my latest portfolio items!

  25. Sarah
    April 15, 2012 at 2:13 pm #

    Nice theme but doesn’t work properly in Opera. The heading and features is broken.

    • Frank McClung
      April 15, 2012 at 6:19 pm #

      I’m seeing the same issues in Opera.

    • Magnus
      April 15, 2012 at 8:19 pm #

      Unfortunately Opera is not supported by us.

      • Sarah
        April 18, 2012 at 9:08 am #

        That’s a real pity and most of your other themes work fine in Opera.

  26. Casey
    April 16, 2012 at 6:08 am #

    Good thing most of my clients don’t use Opera. In fact its less than 1% of my website visitors which makes it nice ๐Ÿ™‚ Keep up the great work guys. Your themes are always professional, clean, and my customers love them.

    • Cobus Bester
      April 16, 2012 at 11:23 am #

      Thanks Casey ๐Ÿ™‚

  27. Cobus Bester
    April 16, 2012 at 11:25 am #

    For those asking about the WooCommerce child theme, the second to last paragraph above states:

    “Should you be expecting WooCommerce support for such a theme then wait till next week for the child theme with pixel perfect styling support.”


    • Dale Wright
      April 16, 2012 at 2:37 pm #

      Cheers Cobus

      I saw that the theme was another Cobus and skipped straight to the demo! ๐Ÿ˜€

      Looking forward to this Thursday! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  28. Tutspress
    April 17, 2012 at 12:39 pm #

    Cobus, this theme beautiful like full width tutorial websites. Great work!

  29. Martin
    April 17, 2012 at 6:40 pm #

    For the non-technical, widgetized homepages rock!

  30. Rebecka Bunyea
    April 19, 2012 at 2:26 pm #

    I just purchased a T103 tablet. When I go to Home > Menu > Settings > Language & Keyboard > Touch Calibration, there is no calibration option. How do I calibrate it?Why cant I play facebook games? I have already downloaded the firmware sucessfully.Thank You