Font Awesome is one of the leading font and icon online publishing toolkits which was originally released in 2012.
Its WordPress plugin had been left without updates for some time but this has now changed. The software has been fully updated by a new team of developers.
Although the software was developed to work across many online publishing platforms, this guide relates solely to the WordPress version of it.
Read on to find out how you can make use of the customisable fonts and icons it offers, the benefits it affords users as well as some of its drawbacks.
How Font Awesome Works
This tailored font software is available in just the same way that many custom font WordPress plugins are.
You can find it easily in the plugin’s directory by simply entering ‘fontawesome’.
Just click on ‘install’ and then ‘activate’ to get it going.
So long as you are running WordPress in version 4.7 or higher, the plugin will start.
Numerous Options Available
Initially, you will be able to view a top-level menu item for the WordPress plugin.
This is located in your WordPress administration area. Alternatively, you can access it by selecting ‘settings’ via the plugin’s entry on its own page.
Once it is up and running, users can load their chosen icons and fonts from the software’s large content delivery network (CDN).
Alternatively, you can opt for the plugin’s own kits instead. Both are easy to operate and offer a good deal of reliability, too.
To make use of an icon or a font, simply enter the relevant shortcode or HTML, whichever you are more familiar with.
Furthermore, users can make use of both ‘Pro’ or ‘Free’ options using the plugin.
Access The Latest Releases
Indeed, it is possible to access all of the latest releases that Font Awesome make available with the plugin.
You are also able to select which sort of software technology you want to use since both SVG and Web Font are available.
SVG allows users to add extra features. Features such as power transformations or layering but it cannot handle pseudo-elements.
Pseudo-elements are an effective way of adding icons into HTML without altering the HTML itself.
This is handy but only likely to be of use to the most advanced users, such as WordPress theme developers.
Addressing Compatibility Worries
People who have not updated their website on WordPress for a while may worry about how compatible their content is with the available custom fonts.
The software developers have the very thing! Because you can turn on an automatic compatibility option which does it all for you.
This is available for version 4 of the plugin and above.
Even better, the plugin has the ability to help you to troubleshoot any issues that may arise when different fonts have been historically selected from earlier versions of the plugin.
Essentially, this means that you are more likely to resolve any clashes that could occur when more than one version of the plugin is attempting to load on your site.
This could also be an invaluable thing if you have fonts in use from other plugins or WordPress themes that end up with an imperfect display.
Pros For Using Font Awesome
– Professional level icons are available to everyone so long as you are using the developer’s CDN.
– The plugin works best for newbies with its latest version. The developers have taken the time to make the software as backwards compatible as possible.
– The plugin comes with a conflict scanner.
– This handy tool searches through all of your codings to ensure that any glitches are highlighted before you publish them.
– Visit any of your pages in administration mode and it will notify you of any elements that are not loading correctly.
– Some conflicts can occur when both CDN and kit settings are used together.
– Users can stick to one or the other, of course.
– However, a big plus point for this software is that it will highlight any preference conflicts it finds.
– The plugin will help to resolve many issues associated with templates that have certain icons from the software developers.
– Many users find that activating the WordPress plugin is all they need to do to overcome problems without needing to conduct any coding themselves at all.
– Generally speaking, it improves site loading times.
– Most users report that the technical support on offer for the plugin is both rapid and accurate.
Cons For Using Font Awesome
– No visual representation of the icon or font you want to use is offered in either the WordPress page or its post editor.
– Users have to switch back and forth between the developer’s own website and their WordPress editor in order to insert the right coding for their choice.
– The plugin itself does not have a pull-down menu. For example, that shows you what options are available. Some users find this annoying.
– Some of the usual features on offer with the software don’t appear in the plugin version. For example, it is not possible to double or treble the size of the code you are using or to set certain animations.
– Overall, the plugin is not really an intuitive one for general users.
– People who are already familiar with it will enjoy many of the updated features in the most recent versions. Some expertise with HTML is usually a prerequisite to get the best out of it.
This custom font WordPress plugin has been downloaded over 100,000 times by WordPress users.
After several years of neglect following the release of the original plugin, what is on offer now is so much better.
That said, the software is not an easy one for most bloggers to get to grips with.
It is more likely to appeal to web publishers and theme developers instead.
Seven languages, including English, are supported by the plugin which has been tested with WordPress up to version 5.4.
Finally, the automated compatibility checker is something that makes this custom font WordPress plugin stand out from others you might choose.