Customizer survey results

A little while ago a CustomizerCustomizer Tool built into WordPress core that hooks into most modern themes. You can use it to preview and modify many of your site’s appearance settings. survey was run. A series of questions were asked and now the results are in.

The survey had 50 responses in the end, all take anonymously through the form in the post.

How often do you use the Customizer on your existing sites?

Summary of this:

53% never or rarely use the Customizer
39.3% use it frequently (ranging from monthly, weekly to daily)
7.8% tend to only use it on the first time they set up a site


“The single column interface makes the options panels extremely long forcing you to scroll for pages when there are more than just a couple of options. When creating the initial concept for the Customizer the CoreCore Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress. devs & designers obviously didn’t take into account real world themes.”

“I rarely use it myself but my clients do a lot.”

“Every time I have to change part of the design. My theme uses customizer very heavily.”

“Only if I’m using a commercial or pre-built theme”

What do you use the Customizer for?

Summary chart:

Others 3 or less votes:

Breakdown where people picked more than one (number of people denoted to right, colors have no meaning apart from showing individual responses):

Quotes from this section:

“as little as I possibly can. If the client is used to it from previous sites, I will put theme style options in there. But I prefer to use ACF Options for that so I can put it someplace (and name it something) the client will remember.”

“Pretty much all design implementation…”

“Setting up site styles like colors, fonts, logos, etc. (Worth noting that I do a lot of this in the customizer because it’s the only place those settings are offered!) “

“Setting up theme styling, redesigning, setting up sites, etc. Very useful for quick changes like a new headerHeader The header of your site is typically the first thing people will experience. The masthead or header art located across the top of your page is part of the look and feel of your website. It can influence a visitor’s opinion about your content and you/ your organization’s brand. It may also look different on different screen sizes. image to change up the look. Wish you could edit everything there instead of going elsewhere to edit content too.”

“I’ve tried it on several occasions. On a recent build tried it for constructing the menus, I had issues with the custom links not saving for whatever reason.”

“Nothing. Why? I’m not sure where the modifications are stored and how compatible it is with my theme so I am hesitant to use it for fear of creating a conflict.”

“I still find it easier to edit menus in the admin interface instead of in the customizer”

“I try to disable it”

“I’ve used it once on a client website. A jquery issue was preventing widgets from opening. The only way to make edits was via the customized.”

“Never use it. Find it annoying and unnecessary.”

Have you downloaded and plugins that add new functionality to the Customizer? What for?

Other 1 vote:


“Maybe, not sure how they’d interact with the customizer”

“I have not installed one myself, but I have used themes that uses kirki. I guess the author found it easier to use kirki than to add their options manually using the standard customizer api.”

“Yes. The Events Calendar adds their new color settings there. That’s nice. I tried the Styles pluginPlugin A plugin is a piece of software containing a group of functions that can be added to a WordPress website. They can extend functionality or add new features to your WordPress websites. WordPress plugins are written in the PHP programming language and integrate seamlessly with WordPress. These can be free in the Plugin Directory or can be cost-based plugin from a third-party a long time ago and found it absolutely overwhelming. That’s a great example of what I’d like the Customizer to *not* end up like.”

Do you use themes that add new functionality to the Customizer? What kinds of features do they add?

Other 2 or less votes:


“I don’t know, I never check. I prefer Theme Options.”

“Yes, Twenty Fifteen and Twenty Seventeen.”

“I only use themes I code myself. All of them disable the customizer.”

“Yes. Common options include showing excerpts or full content, changing accent colors (more colors than header text color and background color), changing fonts. But also changing layouts like full width, boxed layouts and sidebarSidebar A sidebar in WordPress is referred to a widget-ready area used by WordPress themes to display information that is not a part of the main content. It is not always a vertical column on the side. It can be a horizontal rectangle below or above the content area, footer, header, or any where in the theme. position. I tend to avoid themes that adds a lot of content areas in the customizer like “service” sections etc, because they are more difficult to set up and make changes to.”

“Almost all of the themes I use add stuff to the customizer, sometimes colors or layouts and always widgets, menus, logos, etc.”

“I have looked into writing some customizer code myself, but didn’t really want to spend the time learning new stuff at the moment.”

“I tend toward the Twenty X themes and Automattic themes. I really liked the new addition of the Content Options where supported by themes (like Shoreditch).”

“TwentySeventeen adds some home page content layout. It’s worth noting I installed TwentySeventeen for three different friends (not “WordPress” insiders) and not one of them could figure out how to setup the home page on their own. I only figured it out be finding a tutorial on WPMU.”

“We have a set of core options we set through customizer through our starter / parent theme, such as which type of menu to us, whether to use content of excerptExcerpt An excerpt is the description of the blog post or page that will by default show on the blog archive page, in search results (SERPs), and on social media. With an SEO plugin, the excerpt may also be in that plugin’s metabox. for content pages, etc. Then our child themes add extra options, such as 404 page content. Also, setting default featured images, and client data (address, phone number, etc) so it can be managed in one central location.”

Is there anything in the Customizer you can’t live without?

Other 2 of less votes:


“Instant refresh I like the quick feedback you receive when setting up a sites options.”

“I wish there was another way to add pictures for headers.”

“i love the customizer. it’s very easy to use. also i prefer to make these kind of adjustments through the wp backend instead of using specific theme functionalities.”

“I need colors with alpha.”

“It’s a visual feedback for theme settings”

“No, it’s purely a bonus.. Albeit a bit one. Options could be elsewhere, but this is a good place.”

“Not for the moment. It is just not powerful enough yet.”

“Most of what’s there (except for themes that add excessive options), wish it did more.”

“Besides the site image? No not really. Although I do like the live preview of edits.”

“Honestly: no. It’s nice to see live previews sometimes, but I would do just fine with the same settings in the admin.”

“I could live without the customizer forcing the tablet breakpoint in preview.”

“No, scrap the ******* thing and start fresh; preferably with floating contextual boxes instead of a sidebar that’s extremely limited”

Is there anything in the Customizer you never use?

Other 1 or less votes:


“Currently, I’m not a big fan of the Additional CSSCSS CSS is an acronym for cascading style sheets. This is what controls the design or look and feel of a site. I think it should at least include syntax colour highlighting. The widgetWidget A WordPress Widget is a small block that performs a specific function. You can add these widgets in sidebars also known as widget-ready areas on your web page. WordPress widgets were originally created to provide a simple and easy-to-use way of giving design and structure control of the WordPress theme to the user. functionality should be improved to support moving widget locations without losing default.”

“I rarely use the menu section, I prefer to set them up in the admin interface. I also never use a background image for the site.”

“Not really, unless themes do silly things like having tons of very specific options for different colors or fonts.”

“I’ve never actually used the device size previews for their stated purpose. I’ve only played around with them. I never collapse the customizer except on my phone.”

Is there anything else about the Customizer you’d like to share?


“Cant believe you gave one whole year to develop this.”

“Please make sure nothing is ever only editable via it. Some people hate it and prefer classic dedicated interfaces.”

“Please make sure nothing is ever only editable via it. Some people hate it and prefer classic dedicated interfaces.”

“I don’t like it and wish that I didn’t have to use it. Most often if there is a setting I had to use the customizer for, I will either forget that something was set in the customizer and end up hunting around for it for a long time before remembering that’s where it was. More often than not the “preview” functionality doesn’t work and you have to save the settings anyway. Also there doesn’t seem to be any consistent logic as to what features should be in the customizer, and theme authors just put whatever they feel like putting in there.”

“When are you guys going to make it actually usable for normal users? I have to disable it for all new sites I submit to clients.”

“Please stop pushing it”

“What would be great, it is to incorporate more settings in the Customizer in order to avoid the back and forth to set up the site (date format, title, tagline, posts per page, …).”

“Keep up the good work.”

“It’s an amazing tool, offer to me possibility to create themes easily customisables by my clients, without adding a (one more !) Option page in the back office. Thanks for your work.”

“It would be great if there was one way of doing things, whether that’s Customizer or classic admin. Easier for end users, easier for developers”

“At the moment it feels like a work-in-process and detracts from the overall WP experience. It also contains the sort of options that change infrequently, which means it’s easy to forget to use the customiser in the few cases it might be useful.”

“Absolutely! Most of my clients complain about the footer and why is it so difficult to modify something so basic as this sentence: “Proudly powered by WordPress”… It is really nonsense having so many options in customizer and still having to create a child themeChild theme A Child Theme is a customized theme based upon a Parent Theme. It’s considered best practice to create a child theme if you want to modify the CSS of your theme. only to be able to edit the standard footer sentence… That doesn’t make any sense, really!”

“I am looking forward to inline editing in a decoupled customizer experience. Making is similar to a site/page builder. I look forward to universal/global adjustments such as link state colors. Background colors. A customizer post widget/blockBlock Block is the abstract term used to describe units of markup that, composed together, form the content or layout of a webpage using the WordPress editor. The idea combines concepts of what in the past may have achieved with shortcodes, custom HTML, and embed discovery into a single consistent API and user experience..”