Introducing Sparkle 3

by Duncan Wilcox — November 12, 2020

For six years we have been working hard on improving Sparkle in meaningful ways, refinements that made Sparkle better. We’re very happy with where Sparkle got, but can’t quite shake off the idea that, while the tree grew, it didn’t cast a much wider shadow.

In other words, Sparkle’s scope hasn’t changed over the years, we didn't make Sparkle useful to significantly more people.

We are changing that today.

Refining, improving and polishing Sparkle will resume soon, but we are making a leap forward in scope, adding new tools to make Sparkle more useful for everybody, both people who use Sparkle today, and people who didn't previously use Sparkle.

Sparkle 3 adds over 50 new features, starting with a redesigned UI. We had started the redesign back in spring. Then Apple announced a major redesign with macOS Big Sur. We knew we wanted to align Sparkle to it, and avoid imposing multiple UI changes on you. It’s still early days, and we will most likely refine Sparkle 3 a bit more before calling it final, but we’re very happy with what we have for you.

Without further ado, here’s the new Sparkle 3 UI running on macOS Big Sur.

Sparkle 3 adopts and embraces the new UI style. We love what Apple did, Sparkle 3 is a big love letter to macOS Big Sur.

Sparkle 3 has the new split sidebar look (with access to a new layers pane), the understated toolbar icons, but also a clearer inspector. The integrated help button takes you straight to the documentation, from many areas of the user interface. When running on Catalina or earlier, Sparkle still has a fresh UI, but none of the Big Sur specific changes.

Today we are shipping a Universal build of Sparkle 3, which runs on the exciting new M1-based Apple Silicon Macs, and on all Intel-based Macs running all the way back to macOS 10.9 Mavericks.

We believe that in times of social distancing and sales depression, you can turn downtime into opportunity. In Sparkle 3 we added all the tools to enable offline businesses for online commerce. And you can do it by yourself (no wizard required).

New features

By popular demand we did it: Sparkle 3 adds support for blogging. We added a quick workflow to get you right into editing, and Sparkle automatically organizes the blog index for you. Additionally the RSS feed is automatically generated, so your blog can be easily added to a feed reader. And as its customary for Sparkle, the blog can easily be made drop dead stunning.

Sparkle 3 introduces popups, to add depth and interactivity to your website. Sparkle popups are an open-ended, configurable building block. You can use them to build different kinds of interactive elements, including mega menus, alerts, interchanging panels, offers, tooltips, help/faq and so on. You can test a very simple one right here.

We added parallax effects, to make your website unique. With some simple settings you can add scrolling effects to most elements. You can combine several options to animate elements: vertical scroll (the “classic” parallax effect), horizontal scroll, scaling, rotation, blur, opacity.

Sparkle 3 introduces new powerful tools that help you to monetize your website:

  • Payment integrations, that can be added with a few clicks: PayPal, Stripe, Snipcart, Ecwid, Gumroad, Paddle.
  • Apartment rental with Houfy.com.
  • Calendars: schedule meetings and appointments with your clients using Calendly or 10to8.
  • Online table reservations for your restaurant with Open Table, The Fork and Quandoo.
  • Google ads: easily add ads to your website.

What use is a great site if you can’t be found? Sparkle takes care of many aspects of SEO, from tight coding to built-in page load performance techniques, but some need user attention. Sparkle 3 now offers a SEO Assistant tool that analyzes your website and points out the critical aspects that should be fixed or improved.

Smart Fields are a powerful new tool that enrich text contents in many ways: you can display counters and countdown timers (including a super-cool “flipboard” effect), a typewriter effect, math formulas, EXIF data extracted from your photos, and more.

Sparkle 3 has over 50 new features, it’s our biggest release since Sparkle’s debut in 2014. We couldn’t have done this without you.

Pricing

Sparkle 3 is an amazing upgrade with over 50 new features, which enable you to make much more interesting sites, that are easier to monetize.

The price of Sparkle 3 hasn’t changed, and it’s discounted by 30% as an introductory pricing for new customers, through the Black Friday and Cyber Monday season.

For existing customers who purchased a Sparkle subscription, we thank you very much for your support, and Sparkle 3 features are included in your subscription.

For existing customers who purchased Sparkle in 2020, the upgrade to the new features is completely free.

For existing customers who purchased before 2020 we are offering a 50% discount on the full price.

There’s one additional feature which we consider to be very niche, and it’s a collection of developer tools. These are priced separately as a one-time purchase of $99.99/€109.99/£99.99 for all product tiers (not included in the subscription). If you need this, it’s worth it.

Get it now!

Sparkle 3 is ready for you right now. If you already have Sparkle on your Mac, run it to update it. You will be welcomed by a screen where you can upgrade.

Otherwise please come over to our store to purchase Sparkle now.

The main Sparkle 3 user interface
The M1
A cog wheel

How far is Christmas?

Months

Days

Hours

Mins

Secs

Sparkle tier differences

Basic

One

Pro

Number of sites

1

1

Unlimited

Number of pages

10

Unlimited

Unlimited

Google Analytics

Site search

Blog

Popups

Parallax effects

Import a whole website

Google AdSense

SEO Assistant

Payment Buttons

Calendars

Export HTML to disk

Instagram support

Layer panel

Background filters

Table and property booking

Sparkle

Sparkle is striving to become the best visual tool to create websites.

We are adding more articles with example websites and more thoughts on visual web development.

Please check out the documentation for an idea on how Sparkle can help create websites visually, or download the free trial.

If you have any questions or feedback please get in touch.

Sparkle combines an all-in-one approach, an understandable interface and a focus on producing high performance and search engine optimized websites. 

All in a powerful native Mac app. 

Nothing else comes close.

Copyright ©2020 River SRL 

IT06208340486 — REA FI-609716

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