Creating Your Home Page
Here’s how to set up your home page. First go to the “Pages” section in your WordPress control panel. Create a new page. In the right hand column you’ll notice a box labeled “Page Attributes.” In that box choose “Home” from the template drop-down menu. Publish your page.
Next go to the Settings section of your control panel and choose “Reading.” At the top, you’ll notice a option to choose what your “Front page displays.” Choose “A static page” and then select the home page you just created from the drop down menu. You can also specify a page here to serve as your blog (all posts) if you’d like to. Update your settings.
That will set the home page to be like the one in the demo with the settings you made earlier. The content for the home page is from widgets. You can add these by going to the Appearance section and selecting Widgets. If you need help with them, there is a quick screencast in our video section that can walk you trough using them.
The beta also has built-in theme updates so you can install the beta and then update to the official 2.0 version when it’s released shortly, all from inside your WordPress control panel.
Once you have the Epic theme installed in your WordPress site, you’ll want to set it up. To start go to the Appearance section of your WordPress dashboard and select theme options. Here you’ll find the theme options for you to set.
The first tab deals with options related to your branding or identity. You can upload a logo, or choose to use the site’s title as a logo. You can also upload a favicon (the small icon that sits next to your site’s URL in a web browser’s navigation bar or on the browser’s tab). There is also an uploader for an Apple shortcut icon. This icon will be placed on a visitor’s iPad or iPhone if they create a shortcut to your site.
Epic includes a lightbox pop-up for image galleries that you can use. The next option lets you turn it on or off. You can also choose from 10 different styles for the lightbox.
You can also select a default layout for your posts next. They can have the content on the left hand, the right hand or have your content full width. You can override those choices for individual posts.
The Excerpt or Full Content option lets you choose to have your blog archives show either an excerpt or the full content. You can also specify footer text for the left and right hand sides of your footer by entering text into the fields provided.
Next you can enter your MailChimp credentials. If you plan on letting your visitors sign up for a newsletter inside the contact widget (more on that later), you’ll need to sign up for a free account with MailChimp. Once you have your account, you can create a list for your subscribers and copy the list ID for that list and paste it into the field for it in the theme options page. Next you’ll want to go to the account button and find the API key link. On that page you can generate an API key. Copy it and paste it into the theme options page. Now your MailChimp sign up form will work.
The Mobile Navigation Label field lets you choose the text that’s displayed in your navigation button for visitors using mobile devices.
Lastly is an option to disable automatic theme updates. If you are customizing the theme files directly, then you’ll want to turn off this option.
Epic comes with three home page layouts for the top of the home page. The static layout features three images (one large and two smaller) like the demo has on its front page. The Slideshow option features a full-width slideshow that shows one slide at a time. The last option is the Sidebar option which has an area for widgets alongside the slideshow.
Once you’ve selected how you’d like to configure the top of the home page, you can then specify how the slideshow is set up.
You can add slides by going to the media section and selecting “Slides.” Here is a quick video that walks through adding slides so you can see how that works:
Slide Image Sizes
- Static Style — 608 pixels wide by 403 pixels tall for the main image, 296 pixels wide by 197 pixels tall for the secondary images.
- Slideshow Style — 960 pixels wide by 540 pixels tall.
- Sidebar Style — 608 pixels wide by 403 pixels tall.
To make a slide a video slide, paste the embed code from a service such as Vimeo into the box for it. That will cause the side to display a video instead of the featured image. That will also disable captions and links on that slide. For best results while using video slides, set the slideshow to not automatically start. That way your visitors won’t click on a slide and then have it move away while they are watching.
Audio and Video Podcasting
On these tabs you can choose the details for your podcast feed. Enter the details for your podcasts here and save your changes. We’ll discuss creating your podcast feed page and archive below.
The next tab is to help with the styling of your site. You can choose between light and dark color styles. Beyond that you can select “yes” to include custom styling and then use the options below that. You can upload a new background. The theme includes several backgrounds in the ZIP file you downloaded from our support site. If you’ll unarchive the ZIP file you’ll find a folder inside it called backgrounds. You’re welcome to use any of these backgrounds or add one of your own. You can also set many colors in the theme using the color pickers.
For the best customizing experience, click the link to the Theme Customizer at the top of this tab. It will let you see the colors, fonts and styles you pick on your site right as you choose them.
If you do not wish to use the built-in Google web fonts you can disable that service by checking the box for it near the bottom of this page.
The last box is for Custom CSS. You can use it to add styling to the site without having to edit the code directly.
Epic comes with support for podcasting built in. To add an episode, go to Podcast and select “Add New.” Here you can create a new podcast episode much like creating a new post. You can enter a title as well as a description of the episode in the content box. Below the main content box, you’ll find a box where you can upload a message audio file, a video file and a uploader for message notes. There are drop-down menus to choose the type of files being uploaded. You’ll also need
In the right hand column, you’ll find two new boxes, one for speakers the other for series. Both of these are optional, but you can use them to add speakers and series to your episodes. That can be a great way to help your visitors find their way around your content. Adding a speaker or series is just like adding a category to your posts. Just click the Add New Speaker/Add New Series link to create your fist ones. After that you can use a checkbox to select existing ones or add new ones as necessary. Once your finished creating your first episode, you can publish it.
To add an archive for your podcasts, go to Page and select “Add New” to create a new page. Once you’ve given your archive a name, look in the right hand column for a drop down menu of “Page Templates.” Select the “Podcast Archive” template and then publish your page. This page will now list all your podcasts.
To set up a podcast feed for iTunes, go to Pages and select “Add New” again to create another new page. In the page template drop-down, choose “Podcast Feed” and publish your page. Unlike the archive, this page you will not want to include directly in your navigation. Instead, you’ll want to copy the URL to the page (the URL is right below the page title) and then submit that to iTunes inside the iTunes app. That will create your feed.
Podcast Series Template
For your message series, first you’ll want to create a new page. Look in the right hand column again for the attributes box and the template drop-down menu. This time choose the Podcast Series List template and publish your page.
Now you’ll need to set up some podcast series. To do that, go to the Podcast section and select “Series.” On this screen you can edit any existing series or create a new one. Just enter in the information that you’d like to have for each series. Since you’re using the series template, at a minimum you’ll want to give each one a title and set an image for it.
After you’ve made at least one series, you can then add individual podcast episodes to it. When you’re creating a new episode or editing an existing one, look in the right hand column and you’ll see a box for series. Choose the appropriate series from the list there and update/publish your podcast.
To add your staff members, go to the Staff section and select “Add New.” Adding a staff member is very similar to creating a page or post. Fill in the appropriate information for your staff member. In the top right hand corner, you’ll find a box for their title and contact information. There is also a spot to add a custom link. You can create a link to the service of your choice there. Near the bottom of the right hand column, you’ll find a box for “Staff Group.” Basically this are categories for your staff members. At a minimum you will need to create one staff group in order to add your staff members to your navigation.
Once you’re finished entering the information on your staff member, go on and publish them. You can then add more staff members. You can use the staff group box to create multiple lists. Say you want to have a list of the staff members who work with students. You could create a “student” staff group and then add those staff members to that group. If necessary you can add the same staff member to multiple staff groups.
After you’ve created at least one staff member that’s part of one staff group, you can add that type to your navigation. That will create the “page” for your staff. The “Staff Group” box will be in the left hand column below pages and categories.
Often WordPress hides the Staff Groups from the left hand column in the navigation builder. If you don’t see staff groups, click on the Screen Options tab in the top right hand corner and make sure the box by staff groups is checked. Once it is, you should be able to add them to your navigation menus.
If you need help with navigation menus, you can watch this quick video:
Epic comes with several custom widgets in addition to the default ones that are part of WordPress. To add these widgets, go to the “Appearance” section of your WordPress control panel and select “Widgets.” The middle area contains the available widgets and the right hand column shows the widget areas (sometimes called sidebars) where you can place the widgets. Each widget area has a description that explains where in the theme this sidebar is located.
To add a widget to a sidebar, just drag the widget and drop it on the sidebar area where you’d like to use it. Each custom widget includes instructions on how to use it. That’s the best place to find instructions. Each widget also has a small configuration panel that lets you set how it is used in that spot.
Epic has built in support for a events plugin called The Events Calendar. It is a free events plugin that is well made, and easy to use. Once installed, it will add an event section to your site as well as a widget to display your upcoming events.
Epic includes two different button shortcodes. The first one links to your PayPal email address. It looks like this:
Here you can replace the
Label Goes Here with the text you’d like to have on your button. Change the email@example.com for the email address on your PayPal account. Lastly the
What the Donation Is For can be changed to show within PayPal what the donation is for.
Just place the shortcode with the options above where you’d like to have the button show up.
The next shortcode option is for a button that links to a URL. It looks like this:
Label Goes Here is once again the text on your button. The
http://yourlink.com is the URL you’d like to make the button link to.
The last bundled shortcode creates a “lead” section for your pages or posts. It essentially sets a different style there. You can use it like so:
That sums up the Epic theme. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask in our support forum.
Thank you again for your business and I sincerely hope you enjoy using Epic.