Tools to Make WordPress Theme Editing Easy
No Theme is perfect and you have to make certain edits to make it look as you want it to. For such edits, here are some tools which I personally use. You don’t have to be coder or developer to make small modifications. These tools are suitable for a newbie as well as experienced person.
Finding What to Edit
On frontend we can see where changes have to be made. Now, we have to figure out how is it coded in backend.
To do that, you can either view Page Source (Press CTRL+U) or use Web Developer tool to inspect elements. Though Firefox has a feature but I prefer Chrome Developer tool.
Just right click on element you want to edit and select Inspect Element. Browser will show you the code responsible for the selected appearance.
Additionally, you can learn from this illustrative video showing use of Chrome Developer Tools with WordPress.
Where to Edit
Now, you have found the code which has to be changed but you do not know in which file it is written. If it is a obvious thing like “Logo”, it will be surely in header.php.
For those, who have basic understanding about WordPress themes structure, it will be easy to guess but sometimes with some themes, things can get little complicated.
So to end the guessing game, I suggest a tool which can look for text string in multiple text files from a folder. It is called FileSeek. Just enter the code you are looking for in query and specify folder/path where theme files are stored.
How to Edit
Even Notepad will do but we are dealing with codes so, a sophisticated Code editor is recommended. I prefer Sublime Text 2 for the purpose which has color markups and nice interface with easy navigation features.
That’s all. Only thing now you need is intelligence and luck (in case of newbie) so that you don’t screw up.
Default ‘Inspect Element’ feature on firefox is not very easy – however it does have lot more interesting features – especially 3D view to inspect ‘z-index’ levels & then testing mobile responsive widths.
Chrome is good – but not the best, I somehow addicted to Firebug extension on Firefox. 🙂