When Choosing a WordPress Theme
Most beginners feel overwhelmed when it involves selecting a topic for his or her WordPress site.
There are thousands of free and paid options. Each theme looks better than the other. How does one choose the simplest theme for WordPress?
In this article, we’ll share the 9 belongings you should consider, so you’ll choose the simplest WordPress theme for your site.
Table of Contents
Why You Should be Careful When Choosing a WordPress Theme?
WordPress is employed to make all types of internet sites. That’s why each theme caters to a special market.
Your WordPress theme should complement the content of your website. For example, if you’re starting a blog on politics or social issues, then you’d need a topic that improves readability.
Many WordPress themes accompany plenty of customization options. If not coded properly, these options can make it difficult for you to vary themes or use other WordPress plugins. You will be locked into that theme or will need to pay a developer to assist you turn .
On the other hand, some WordPress themes that look really great can actually make your website incredibly slow. No one likes slow websites, particularly Google, which prefers to rank faster websites higher.
Your theme is that the face of your WordPress site and plays a crucial role in how users, also as search engines, perceive it.
You’ve probably heard the old saying , ‘All that glitters isn’t gold.
Having said that, let’s take a look at the steps you’ll fancy confirm that you simply simply select the only theme for your WordPress site.
1. Strive for Simplicity
Many WordPress themes accompany many colors, complex layouts, flashy animations, etc. Sometimes you’ll need those things, but in most cases, you don’t actually need all that.
Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.
~ Leonardo da Vinci
Look for a theme that has a design layout that helps you support your goal. It must look good but without compromising on usability and ease .
Make sure that the theme’s presentation style isn’t overly complicated. The purpose of web design is to assist users find the knowledge they have and to assist site owners to achieve their goals at an equivalent time.
If a topic looks great but doesn’t assist you get new business or subscribers, then it’s not an honest theme. It is also not an honest theme when your users can’t really find their way around your website.
Take a look at these 37 simple WordPress themes for some inspiration.
2. Responsive is Not Optional Anymore
Responsive themes adjust their layout across different screen sizes and devices.
A significant number of web traffic is generated from mobile and other handheld devices. Depending on your website’s topics, this number could go even above 50% of your traffic.
Google shows mobile-friendly websites on top in their mobile search results. Regardless of your site’s topics and demographics, all websites got to be responsive and fully mobile-ready.
Most WordPress themes are already responsive by default. But there are still sellers who are selling fixed-width layouts that aren’t mobile-friendly in the least. Make sure that the theme you’re choosing for your website is mobile-friendly.
Testing a Theme for Mobile Readiness
The easiest thanks to testing whether a topic is responsive or not is by resizing your browser screen. As you resize your browser screen, you’ll notice that the theme’s layout will adjust itself to the screen width.
For more thorough testing you’ll copy the URL of the theme’s demo page and paste it into Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test page.
Please note that this test will show some warnings, no matter how good a topic is. Look out for any red flags like text too small, content wider than the screen, etc.
3. Browser Compatibility
Your users will be using different browsers. Your theme may look perfect on the browser you employ , but there could be something broken other browsers.
This is where browser compatibility comes in. Most WordPress theme developers test their themes rigorously by using sophisticated browser compatibility testing tools.
They may clearly mention this on their website. But if they don’t, then you’ll always run some basic tests to see the theme on different browsers like Google Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari, etc.
Don’t forget to check on different browsers on mobile also.
4. Supported Plugins
The real power of WordPress comes with WordPress plugins. These plugins make it possible for you to try to do anything together with your WordPress site.
While there are many WordPress plugins, some are must-have WordPress plugins for each website. Like Gravity Forms, Yoast SEO, W3 Total Cache, etc.
Make sure that your WordPress theme supports all popular plugins. If you’re unsure, ask the theme developer about it.
5. Translation + Multilingual Ready
A large number of WordPress sites aren’t within English. You may be creating an internet site during a language aside from English. Maybe you’ve got plans to make a multilingual WordPress site within the future.
Make sure that your WordPress theme is translation-ready and supports multilingual WordPress plugins.
6. Page Builders
Page builders are WordPress plugins that allow you to create page layouts using a drag and drop user interface.
Many premium WordPress themes accompany page builders pre-installed. Some of these page builders are employed by that theme developer only.
Using such a page builder to make landing pages can produce tons of unwanted code. If you ever switch the theme, then those pages would require tons of cleaning up.
You should choose themes that are shipping with one among the foremost used page builder plugins. You can also purchase these page-builders separately to use with other themes also.
7. Support Options for When You Need Help
One downside of employing a free WordPress theme is that there’s no guaranteed support. While some developers provide excellent support for his or her free themes, many free themes haven’t any support option.
If you run your WordPress theme, then you’ll need to figure it out on your own. You can also find yourself paying a third-party developer to unravel the tiniest problems.
Make sure that you simply select a WordPress theme that has good documentation and support option. Most premium WordPress themes offer detailed documentation with 1 year of email-based support.
8. SEO Friendliness
Your WordPress theme plays a crucial role in your site’s SEO friendliness. A good-looking theme can still generate poorly coded HTML, this might affect your site’s performance on search engines.
It might be difficult for beginners to research a theme’s ASCII text file on their own. This is why many premium WordPress theme developers will allow you to know that their pages are optimized for SEO.
You can also take a glance to ascertain if the page generates proper HTML5 by checking it with the W3C Markup Validation service. However, please note that the W3C tool will generate many warnings which are nothing to be worried about.
9. Ratings and Reviews
Another solid indicator of a WordPress theme’s quality is ratings and reviews provided by its users. If the theme is sold on a third-party marketplace, then you’ll see customer reviews.
For free WordPress themes, you’ll find the rating section slightly below the download button. It will show the number of reviews and stars given by users. If you click on 5 stars, then it’ll show you all the reviews that gave the theme 5 stars.
Almost all WordPress themes can get a few bad reviews. but if the number of bad reviews is unusually high, then you should read them carefully.
There are plenty of free WordPress themes available with new ones being released on a daily basis. That’s why we regularly publish the list of our favourite free themes in our showcase section.
Some of the popular items in our theme showcase are:
- 41 Best Free WordPress Photography Themes (Expert Pick)
- 21 Best Free WordPress Business Themes
- 37 Simple WordPress Themes You Should Try
- 43 Beautiful Free WordPress Blog Themes
However, as we have mentioned above that support is one of the most important factor to consider when selecting a theme. Free WordPress themes do not come with guaranteed support and updates.
Most premium WordPress themes offer 1 year of support and updates. Here are some of the theme shops that we highly recommend.
- Astra Theme
- Divi Theme by Elegant Themes
- Artisan Themes
How to Install a Theme in WordPress
Installing a WordPress theme is really simple. First you need to download the theme’s zip file to your computer.
After that login to your WordPress admin area and go to Appearance » Themes page.
On top of the themes page, you need to click on the Add New link.
This will take you to the add new theme page. You can use this page to look for free themes to install. But since we have already downloaded the theme, you need to just click on Upload theme link at the top.
You will now see the theme upload box. Click on choose file button to select the theme zip file you downloaded to your computer earlier and then click on the Install now button.
WordPress will now upload the theme from your computer to your website and install it for you. Once it is done, you will see a success message with links to preview or activate the theme.
If you do not want to use a theme right away, then you can click on the live preview button to test out the theme without activating it.
Please note that you will have to activate a theme in order to use it on your website.
For more detailed instructions, see our beginner’s guide on how to install a WordPress theme.
How to Safely Change WordPress Themes
For new WordPress sites, you’ll just select the right theme and install it on your site. However, if you’ve got a longtime WordPress site, then you would like to properly switch your theme to avoid any effect on your site’s performance and SEO.
First, you would like to know what happens to a WordPress site once you switch themes. Here is our guide on what happens once you switch your WordPress theme.
Some settings on your WordPress site will disappear and can not automatically apply to your new theme. You need to know this stuff, and the way you’ll put them back on your new theme.
We have compiled a handy checklist of belongings you must do before changing WordPress themes.
After that, you would like to follow the instructions in our tutorial on the way to properly switch WordPress themes on your site.
We hope this text helped you decide on the right theme for your WordPress site. You may also want to see our list of must-have WordPress plugins for business websites.