It has been almost two years since I wrote my article about installing demo content for WordPress, and in that article I tried to explore whether the experience was the same for all themes.
And today, after having installed close to 200 themes with their demo content as an envato service provider, I still see this as a challenging process.
Why do We Need to Import Demo?
Importing demo is just a way of giving you a head start and allowing your to start creating your own site with ease and thus it’s supposed to be a simple and time saving process, but is that the case?
The Official Importer Plugin and its problems:
The Most common way to install demo content for themes in the WordPress importer plugin
And although it is the Official plugin made by WordPress.org and has been installed over One Million times, it’s still not that good and fails to give good results with the import process too often and if you look at the ratings it received you’ll see that it has 93 (5-star) ratings and 83 (1-star) rating and this shows that a lot of people have been frustrated by its results!
So, clearly this solution isn’t working for a lot of people and personally I sometimes have to redo the import process multiple times to get it to do the whole process successfully which is a real waste of time and efforts!
What are theme authors doing about this?
1-click Demo Importers:
A lot of theme authors nowadays have started to create their own importer plugins and many of them deliver it pre-installed with the theme that you get to run it right after you install the theme.
And a very good example of that is the Avada Theme Demo Importer which is a true 1-click demo importer.
And although I have a couple of comments on the Avada theme as a whole I find that its demo importer is a great one that does the job perfectly every time.
Another cool demo import I found was the Listify theme demo importer, and this one was so simple to use and it imports everything with just one click.
Multi-step Demo Importers:
A lot of other authors create their own demo importer plugins but that only gives you the pages, posts and images and then you need to install another plugin to import the Widgets, like the Widget Importer and Exporter Plugin, and then you need to import the sliders like Layer Slider or Slider Revolution to get a fully functional demo content.
What do Do when the Regular Demo Importer fails?
If your theme doesn’t come bundled with its own demo importer then you have to use the Official plugin for that and if you’re faced with the situation that the import process fails, you simply need to redo the upload and import process again ad again until it works.
It’s perfectly fine to do that and the only problem you’ll face is repeated menu items where you will find that the menu entries have been imported multiple times and you can simple delete the extra entries if your menu doesn’t have so many pages, or you can simple delete the whole menu and run the import process once more to get just the menus.
A Word of Caution:
Please note that most demo importers were created assuming that you run them into newly created WordPress installation and thus some of them would erase any posts or pages you already have.
So, if you’re running the import process on an old site that has important content, make sure to read the demo importer precautions well in order not to lose your valuable content( It’s worth noting that the official demo importer doesn’t delete any of your content but installs the new content and keeps your current data safe).
What’s your Experience with Importing Demo content?
- Have you tried to install demo content yourself?
- How did you find the whole process and did it give you the result you’re looking for?
- What was the best demo importer that you’ve personally used?
Look forward to your thoughts and comments.