Have you recently discovered the enormous world of WordPress or just want to find the best WordPress theme for your website?
WordPress as a platform is becoming increasingly popular and there is a whole world of different extensions and themes for you to choose from.
But if you have started looking for a wordpress theme, you have probably also discovered that it is not always easy to know which WordPress theme to choose and which is the best theme for you and your needs. When looking for a theme, it can feel overwhelming with all the thousands of options out there.
In this guide, we will go through the most important aspects you should keep in mind when choosing.
How to choose a WordPress theme
The fantastic thing about the large selection of themes is that they have made it possible for all of those who do not really have any tech skills to build their own websites. With flexible “site builders”, people can easily (or at least easier) design websites in the form of “drag and drop” – and do not have to work in the code itself.
Free vs. Paid WordPress Themes
There are both free and paid WordPress themes that you can choose from. In general, those that are free are often of a much simpler design and very rarely have support or help connected to them.
A lot of people who just start out begin with a basic free WordPress theme and then opt for a more advanced theme as their site or business grows. But if you don’t want to start with the most basic themes, it is a good idea to invest in a paid theme right away. Since paid themes in general are quite affordable, it doesn’t require a huge investment.
When people who have been using a free theme change to a paid theme, most of them actually tend to realize that paying for a theme is definitely worth it.
If your website is a hobby project that does not bring in any money – then it might be okay and good to use a free theme. Especially if you find something you like. But if you run a business, use your website professionally, and make money on it directly or indirectly – we would advise that you choose a premium theme. It will help make your website look much more professional and become more intuitive, but there is also a better selection of premium themes to choose from so you can find the one that is the best for your needs.
The WordPress themes that are free work great for you who have little or no special needs for what the website must contain and what it looks like. It certainly also helps if you know the basics of HTML & CSS coding.
These themes are usually not the most beginner-friendly and are usually recommended for those who are a little more technical.
Through WordPress.org you have access to a large library of free design themes for WordPress. On the surface, most look very good, but it can be really problematic to choose a free theme.
For example, if you choose a free theme that has a single developer, perhaps as a side project, you put yourself in an unnecessarily vulnerable situation. The WordPress “engine”, ie the installation of WP is continuously developed by a large community of developers.
When the developer stops updating the free theme, it can have real consequences for your digital presence and your brand. A theme that does not work properly can mean that the user experience on your website becomes poor.
It can also lead to the website being hacked or, in extreme cases, completely stop working.
The Benefit of Paid WordPress Themes
The premium WordPress themes that have a one-time cost often come with support and question forums linked to them that often apply for 6-12 months. The forums that are linked to the theme are always free, but there is also often “Premium Support” where you can quickly get help from a dedicated developer for the theme.
Paid themes are highly recommended for those who have a little less knowledge in coding and for you who want the latest and greatest that is available for WordPress.
Oftentimes, there are also clean templates that help you get started quickly and they usually have self-developed guides and guides who answer most things.
Some of the primary designs of opting for a paid WordPress theme include:
- Often the best and most used WordPress themes
- Often great support for about a year
- Lots of help guides and resources
- Very nice design options and templates
- Always updated to the latest WordPress
- Easy to adjust colors and fonts
The big difference between paid and free themes is that the paid have better support for changes and adjustments and make it easier for you without any knowledge about coding to make both local and global changes on your site.
Free themes make it much harder to change and adjust, which makes your need for coding skills greater. In other words, free themes tend to give you less freedom with what you can actually do.
What does a WordPress theme cost?
Most WordPress themes cost between $ 39-100. This is a great investment to make as you get continuous updates which means that your website is always up to date when WordPress is updated and developed.
There are also many ready-made templates for designs and inspiration that will get you started quickly and that will free you up to start developing yourself on the site without major design or coding skills. In other words, it’s more beginner-friendly.
Mobile friendly theme
It is of absolute utmost importance that your theme is mobile-friendly. Today, around half of all internet traffic takes place over the phone and your website loses a lot of potential if it is not mobile-friendly and supports different resolutions.
There are so many visitors who share websites and resources over the phone so you lose a lot if you do not have a mobile-friendly website. At the same time, do not forget to add HTTPS!
Quality support & documentation
If you are a beginner when it comes to WordPress, you can take advantage of the fantastic support and forums that many themes have connected to it.
You often get help within 24 hours and you can solve most things yourself with this help. A trick is to often choose a theme that has been bought many times because it really is a quality factor!
When you have decided on your theme, it is time to set up your own website.
Why are there so many WordPress themes?
As you may have seen, there are endless different WordPress themes on the market. The reason for this is that WordPress is built so that anyone can create themes for the platform. It is thus a so-called “open software”, unlike for example Squarespace which has full control over the entire platform. This is why you can customize and change just about anything on your WordPress site, but not if you have a Squarespace website.
WordPress is also the most popular content management system (CMS) available today. Which resulted in a huge market to create and sell themes for the platform. Hence why there are so many different themes on the market today.
There are thousands of WordPress themes to choose from today. And how would you know which theme is good? Easy to build? Easy to use? And that looks exactly the way you want it?
Tips for starting your WordPress theme research
Our best recommendation is to sort by different categories and themes to find something that feels right and suits your type of business.
When you are browsing the web, you can also check which theme a site that you like uses. Checking which theme someone else is using is very easy to do. To do this, simply right-click when you are on the site, select “show page source”, search (cmd + F) for “theme”. When doing this, you will find a link or word where the theme’s name should be included. Note that this is only relevant for WordPress sites.
Google images for inspiration
A great way to find the perfect WordPress theme is to simply google for whatever you are looking for. For example “Simple e-shop WordPress themes” or “Simple blogging themes”. Take a look at the Google images and see what the theme looks like. Look for a theme with a design that speaks to you and your preferences.
Find themes for a specific site builder
If you want to find themes that belong to a specific theme/site builder, you can do the following:
Go in and search for e.g. WordPress theme then scroll down and to the left, at the bottom, you select “compatible with” where you select, for example, Elementor depending on which theme builder you are interested in. Then you get themes that work with the website tools.
Keep this in mind when choosing a WordPress theme:
- It should support updates.
- It is good if it is optimized for SEO
- Check the ratings! With themes, you can look at reviews and ratings to see if previous customers are satisfied. You can see it as a guarantee that it seems to be a good theme. For the same reason, it can be a bit risky to use a theme that does not have as many users, as there is a risk that it will crash and that they will stop updating the theme.
- It can be an advantage if there is support to contact during e.g. first year, to get help with the theme and to create your design.
- Choose a theme that is as similar as possible to the website you want. The more customizations you want to make, the more time you will need to spend. This is why it is good if you find a theme that is very similar to what you have in mind. Think about whether it suits your needs and the pages you need.
- the more features a theme has, the greater the risk that something may “break” or stop working. Bugs may be more common. This also applies to any additional plugins you install – when problems occur on a WordPress site, it is common that it is due to two plugins that collide with each other.
- How do you know that the theme works on different screens and devices? It often says “responsive”, but the good news is that most themes are responsive today.
- Has the theme been updated recently? It can be a clear indicator of how maintenance and development are handled by the company behind the theme.
- Is the theme compatible with the latest version of WordPress Core, ie the WordPress “engine” that runs your website?
- Is the design theme compatible with WooCommerce? If you are planning to sell through your website, the theme needs to work with WooCommerce. The most popular webshop solution for WordPress.
A WordPress theme is a good investment
It usually does not cost more than 60 dollars to buy a premium theme for WordPress. This is a small investment that ensures that you get a theme that will be developed in accordance with WordPress Core (the “Engine” that runs your website) is updated.
At the same time, not all paid themes are the same, but you need to choose a premium theme with care to ensure you find one that is perfect for your needs.
All good premium themes that have a so-called “drag and drop” tool make it easy to create and update the design without having to code anything. It’s called a Content builder.