WordPress is the backbone of a ridiculous number of websites big and small. In fact, WordPress is so popular that it powers over 40% of all websites, ranging from personal blogs to business websites. When deciding to go with WordPress, whether you’re using a traditional installation or managed WordPress web hosting, you need to consider two factors: the look of the website and its functionality. After all, who doesn’t want an attractive and easy-to-navigate online presence? But you also want a site that meets current web standards and is optimized for search engine discovery. Fortunately, you can achieve these goals with the right WordPress theme.
What is a WordPress Theme?
A WordPress theme is a collection of files that create a Graphical User Interface (GUI) for WordPress powered websites. The GUI doesn’t modify the underlying software, so you can swap out themes with relative ease, if you want to give your site a visual refresh or add some new functionality. WordPress.org hosts many free themes that have been quality inspected.
Yes, free themes. WordPress themes come in free and premium varieties, with each type having pros and cons. Free WordPress themes are, shall we say, free, but they usually come with sponsored links, limited customer service (or none at all!), and a few security updates.
Premium WordPress themes, on the other hand, require currency exchange, but you’ll usually receive link-free installation, solid customer support, and frequent security updates. You should also expect updates to keep the theme up to date with the latest changes to the WordPress software itself (which happens often). You will pay a one-time fee of around $40 for a high-quality single-use professional theme. For an extended license that grants you or a client a theme that you can sell to others, you’ll pay over $1,000. If you are seriously considering building a WordPress website, a premium theme is an essential part of the process. And to find a premium WordPress theme, you need to go to an online store. More on that in a moment.
The Anatomy of a Good WordPress Theme
A good WordPress theme should include several important elements: a responsive design that is mobile and cross-browser compatible, a build that meets search engine optimization (SEO) standards, and a company that offers good technical and upgrade support. day.
A WordPress theme with a responsive design eliminates the need for a mobile version of your site, as it changes its shape to fit screens of different sizes. Do your due diligence by checking a theme’s description to see if it has a responsive design. Moreover, the WordPress theme should meet basic SEO standards.
Check that the theme you want to buy is compatible with all major web browsers including Chrome, Edge, and Firefox. Luckily, you can check a theme’s browser compatibility by running its demo in your browser. Any WordPress theme store worth its salt will allow you to try before you buy.
Your potential purchase should also offer technical support from the theme store or theme developers, so you can contact someone for help if you run into any issues. Never underestimate the value of having someone guide you through the troubleshooting process. It helps a lot.
How to Find WordPress Themes
Before buying a WordPress theme, you must first find the one that best suits your needs. Many of our recommended marketplaces offer dozens and dozens of themes, but you don’t have to browse through them all. You should look for a WordPress theme that boasts a high user rating, large number of reviews, and high sales to get an accurate view. Aim for themes with a review rating of 4.5 or higher and at least 3,000 sales. It’s your money, so only settle for the best!
Luckily, many of our recommended themed shops allow you to apply filters, so you can do a quick search to meet those criteria. There are plenty of themes designed for personal and business needs that fall into this range, and a surprising number of deep cuts focused on a particular market. For example, WordPress themes designed for online stores incorporate online shopping carts. But without further ado, here are five WordPress theme marketplaces to visit, along with recommended themes.
ThemeForest is a robust theme marketplace that is packed with thousands of themes to browse. ThemeForest’s extensive search and category system makes it easy to find your ideal theme, but we’ve selected four sample themes to guide your search. These meet the above criteria: they are highly rated, responsive, SEO optimized and have been purchased thousands of times.
BeTheme and Enfold ($59 each) are ideal for designers and business-focused users. BeTheme in particular comes bundled with some of the best-selling WordPress plugins in the ThemeForest marketplace. Kalium and Redwood ($59 and $39, respectively) are popular non-commercial themes that are great for photography, typography, blogging, or personal promotion.
StudioPress offers an excellent selection of WordPress themes, as well as the popular Genesis Framework, an advanced framework and theme building kit. Genesis gives you a fantastic set of tools to build your dream WordPress site, but if you’re not the creative type, you can also just buy themes from first-party or third-party developers.
You can purchase individual themes, such as the food-focused Foodie Pro ($75) or subscribe to Genesis Pro ($360 per year). A Genesis Pro subscription allows you to use all themes created by StudioPress and explore the Genesis framework.
Elegant Themes offers many quality themes, including the Divi page builder. This popular theme/framework gives you the tools to create beautiful sites without fiddling with code or setting up plugins.
Elegant offers two simple payment options for its themes. A subscription costs $89 per year and gives you full access to its theme library. You can also purchase a lifetime subscription for a one-time fee of $249. Themes cannot be purchased individually; instead, you get access to Elegant’s full suite of themes.
Themeisle offers several WordPress themes to suit your needs, from the clean-looking Neve to the business-oriented Hestia Pro. Neve is ideal for businesses, designers, developers, and photographers. Hestia is the more option-rich choice, giving you additional tools to customize pages however you see fit. Themeisle has multiple pricing tiers for each theme. For example, the Neve Personal plan, Business plan, and Agency plan cost $69 per year, $149 per year, and $259 per year, respectively. Hestia Pro also offers three annual subscription tiers: $69 Personal, $99 Business, and $299 Agency. You cannot purchase individual themes.
Astra is a very popular and flexible theme that comes with lots of customization options. Astra is a freemium service, meaning it’s free to download, but offers great benefits if you subscribe to its $49 per year plan which includes advanced layouts and builders, WooCommerce features, and extended layouts. The Essential Pack ($169 per year) includes Astra Pro, along with the WP Portfolio plugin, starter templates, and a few page builder add-ons. The growth plan ($249 per year) offers out-of-the-box websites, as well as plugins for those sites. It also includes SkillJet Academy courses, which offer in-depth courses on web entrepreneurs and business.
To learn more about web hosting, check out our articles on building a website and registering a domain name for your website, as well as our roundup of the best web hosting services. WordPress.