Support » Theme: Chaplin » Notes on Potential Social Icon Improvements

  • In my time using Chaplin, I’ve noticed a few limitations of the social icons implementation that I’ll go through here. They are listed in terms of importance in my mind. #1 is way more important than #2 and #3.

    Thanks as always for the theme 🙂

    1. No social icons with alt menu on Desktop

    Because the social icons appear in the menu “drawer”, when the alternative “desktop” style menu is in use, the social icons do not appear anywhere on large screens.

    I don’t have a great idea for a solution for this. Probably adding them to the footer on large screens when the alt menu is turned on would be the lowest-impact change to get them on. For backward compatibility, I could also see adding a new location for them in the header when the alt menu is active but requiring existing sites to opt-in via a customizer setting.

    2. Styling the menu widget?

    This may not be worth the effort with widgets on their way out, but I’ll mention it. It would be awesome if the Menu Widget could style the social icons menu. I’ve never done this, but I presume it would be possible to do this by checking whether a menu in a widget is assigned to the social menu theme location and then applying some class to trigger the styles.

    3. Use SVGs?

    Seeing that Font Awesome is about 64kb and that you’re already using a lot of SVGs, I wonder about switching to SVGs for the social icons? It could potentially reduce the page weight (depending on implementation), and would also just make styling icons more consistent for the whole theme. I can imagine arguments against this, but thought I’d throw it out there.

Viewing 4 replies - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
  • I think #1 depends on the purpose of your site. Social icons can ruin performance for a landing page that is designed to capture leads or convert sales because having icons at the top of the page is giving the visitor an easy way out. And we all know what happens when we get directed to social media sites… the rabbit hole.

    But I do think having it as an option for header or footer would be welcomed.

    Edit: however, I love this theme for it’s simplicity. Sometimes less is more.

    • This reply was modified 5 months, 3 weeks ago by jvjerde.
    Thread Starter mrwweb


    @jvjerde Based on your comment, maybe I should clarify my observation.

    Setting the “Disable Menu Modal on Desktop” also results in there being no social icons available on Desktop. That feels like an unexpected side effect unrelated to the option.

    Since people could justifiably want a “Desktop”-style menu and social icons (👋), supporting that seems like a big improvement to the theme’s flexibility and configurability.

    Theme Author Anders Norén


    Hi @mrwweb,

    Thanks for the suggestions, and for the donation! Both very much appreciated.

    1. Yeah, I’ve been meaning to add opt-in display of the social icons in the alt menu for some time now (opt-in since people don’t like when elements appear out of nowhere in updates). Not including it as an opt-out option in the first place was an oversight when I first created Chaplin. It’s at the top of the to-do list, so I’m hoping that I can get to it in the next couple of weeks.

    2. Styling the menu widget with the social icons when the menu chosen is also set as the social menu should be possible by filtering the output of the widget. I’ll take a look at it when I update the alt nav.

    3. Yeah, if I was building Chaplin today, I probably would’ve gone for SVGs. In addition to reducing page size, it would make it a lot easier for child themes to add social icons not included in FontAwesome. Changing to it now would break social icons for people who have added support for additional FontAwesome social icons using custom CSS (as described here), however, so I’m afraid the ship has sailed on that front.

    — Anders

    Thread Starter mrwweb


    Thanks for the clear explainers. That makes sense on all counts!

Viewing 4 replies - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
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