In This Article
- Why should you update your theme?
- Tips for using the Theme Updater App
- Alternative method to update your theme (without the Theme Updater App)
- Theme Changelogs
Why should you update your theme?
All of our themes are robust and well-maintained, and we regularly release upgrades that offer new features and functionality and bug fixes.
Check out our blog article that goes into tons of details on why you should be keeping your theme up to date.
In order to advantage of these updates, we recommend using our Theme Updater App!
The official Shopify Theme Updater Shopify App by Out of the Sandbox is the easiest, fastest and most convenient way to update your theme. Once you have the Theme Updater App installed, when a theme update is released, you should receive an email containing a new download link and upgrade instructions. If for some reason you do not receive it, please contact our Merchant Success Team.
This app exclusively supports Out of the Sandbox and Pixel Unions themes.
Quick tips about the Theme Updater App
- Theme upgrades are always optional but highly recommended
- The theme upgrade will duplicate your theme settings and apply them to the updated theme. The updated theme will not replace your published theme, but will be available as an unpublished theme (which you can choose to publish when you are ready!)
- Please note that if you decide not to update your theme and begin experiencing difficulties with your theme, we may not be able to provide support for the issue, especially if it has been resolved in a subsequent version. In these cases, you may be able to hire a developer to help you resolve the issue.
- More questions? See our Theme Updater FAQ page
Important note if you are using a "pre-section" theme version: If you are updating an older theme between any of these version ranges, you will need to rebuild your homepage after the update. To learn how to determine what version you are using, click here.
Out of the Sandbox 'pre-section' theme versions:
Parallax 1.0 - 2.4.4
Retina 1.0 - 3.2.3
Mobilia 1.0 - 4.4.4
Responsive 1.0 - 5.2
Turbo 1.0 - 1.2.5
Pixel Union 'pre-section' theme versions:
Atlantic theme versions older than 10.0
Editions theme versions older than 8.0
Grid theme versions older than 2.0
Launch theme versions older than 2.0
Pacific theme versions older than 2.0
Startup theme versions older than 7.0
After updating from a theme in the version ranges above, your unpublished homepage will appear be replaced with "dummy" content that you will need to configure before going live.
Once you are using 'section-based' theme, rebuilding the homepage each time you update is no longer necessary in most cases when using our theme updater app.
For Out of the Sandbox themes this includes: Parallax 3.0+, Retina 4.0+, Mobilia 5.0+, Responsive 6.0+, Turbo 2.0+, Artisan 1.0+, and Flex 1.0+.
For Pixel Union themes this includes: Atlantic 10.0+, Empire 1.0+, Grid 2.0+, Handy 1.0+, Launch 2.0+, Pacific 2.0+, Reach 1.0+, Startup 7.0+, Vogue 1.0+, and Superstore 1.0+.
Upgrades and new styles
When a new theme style is released, there is no way to add the new style without installing a fresh copy of the theme. The Theme Updater App will updated your code, but cannot added new styles at this time. How can I use a new theme style that has been released?
Alternative method to update your theme (without the Theme Updater App):
If you purchased your theme directly from the Out of the Sandbox website:
If you are not using the Theme Updater App to update your theme, you'll need to request an updated theme file from our Merchant Success Team.
If you purchased your theme from the Shopify Theme Store:
You can go back to the Theme Store to download the latest version of your theme (just be sure to be logged into the same shop that you originally purchased the theme):
NOTE: your theme will install as a new and separate theme in your Themes section. You should plan to customize and prepare your new theme in "preview" mode until you are ready to go live with it:
Tips and Best Practices for alternative method:
- have your current site open in a separate window or take a few screenshots as a visual reference
- have all your image files (logo, favicon, banner pictures) easily accessible in a local folder so that when you need to add those again through the theme customizer, you can find and upload them easily
- make a note of all of your social media account links and information (user names, client #, etc.) so that they're easy to copy and paste from one place
- set up a simple text document that includes as much info as possible about all the current theme settings that you want to reproduce, including any colors and fonts you've used throughout the current site (e.g. button color = #f9068f, Headline text = Google web font 'Lato', 20px, etc.); it's often easier to refer to the one document rather than switching back and forth between the theme customizer of the current site and the theme customizer of the new one in preview mode
- if you've made any changes or additions to your actual theme files (styles.scss.liquid, index.liquid, etc.) see if you can locate and make note of these in a separate text file, so that you can reproduce them all in the new version (a ‘changelog’ like this is a good thing to maintain at all times, as it will help you keep track of all your customizations and make any future upgrades easier!)
- as you customize your new theme upgrade, work your way from the top down, starting with the top bar/header section: re-add your logo and favicon, then re-add your images in the Home Page / Home Page Slider sections, and then deal with the fonts and colors, and finally the newsletter and social media info
Finally, don't forget that you can also take this opportunity of the theme upgrade to change things up a bit in your shop (add some new pictures, try out some new colors, etc.) and take your time; just keep working in preview mode and then when you're finally ready to make the switch, hit the 'Publish' button!
FAQ for the alternative method:
Q: Can I switch to the new theme automatically, without losing my customizations?
A: Unfortunately not, you will need to apply (reproduce) all your custom edits in the new theme manually. This only applies if you are using the alternative method - your theme settings and basic customizations will be carried over if you use the Theme Updater app.
Q: Can I selectively add features from the updated theme to my current theme?
A: It would require additional development to selectively add an individual feature and is not recommended. We also have a list of recommended Shopify Experts.
View more Frequently Asked Questions about our Theme Updater App
If you're curious and wondering what's been included in each theme update, you can view our Changelogs. The Changelogs list features/enhancements/improvements/bug fixes that have been included in each release!