You’ve finally decided to set up your own website be it for your business, travel blog, or yoga studio. You have all the basics in place: a domain, a website host, and a WordPress account, but a critical question still needs to be answered: what WordPress theme should you choose for your site?.
When you begin your search, you’ll see that there is a wide availability of both premium and free themes and this can be very overwhelming. If you are a developer, you may know a thing or two about a WordPress Themes but, if you are not, what are the key elements you need to look into before picking the theme that will decide the future of your website?
With a wide range of attractive WordPress themes, you want to be clear of your needs and what you expect out of the website: are you setting up a personal blog? A travel site? Are you trying to sell online? Do you want to generate leads or take appointments? Once you know the basic goal of your site, then you can jump into some of the specifics to identify the right theme:
- Your Requirements and Budget
Your requirements are by far the first criteria when you start looking for a WordPress theme. What is the nature of the website that you are building? Is it a regular blog, a video site or more on the pictorial side or a sales site? This is very important for the design: for instance, a content-centric website might require a minimal WordPress theme while an image-heavy travel blog would need a much more visual design. Once you have figured this out, shortlisting the right theme becomes easier.
Additionally, the budget is an important factor. Before choosing a theme, decide on the amount of money you are willing to spend. While you might often come across people telling you how free themes are bad, but there are still some great free themes out there that can help you get started
For example, our free themes like Lifestyle Fashion and Travel Lifestyle work wonders when it comes to imagery focused sites about fashion or travel.
- Use Themes from Credible Developers
It is essential that you download your themes from authentic and known sources. Considering trustworthy official sources ensures that the selected themes are devoid of coding errors, spam links, and viruses. The safest sources for the purpose are the official WordPress website or theme sites featured by WordPress like ThemeForest, which offer you an array of premium and free themes from which to choose. In fact, a quick look through the ratings and reviews can give you the assurance that the theme is still a popular one with other users.
- Check for Browser Compatibility
Your target audience uses different devices and thus, may have different browser preferences as well. Ensure that the WordPress theme that you choose appears across various browsers. While a theme can appear awesome on one browser, it may not be that way on another. WordPress themes are usually pre-tested by their developers. However, in case you do not find this clause mentioned, you can try testing it on different browsers like Google Chrome, Safari or Firefox.
- Choose a Responsive Theme
Deciding on responsive design is simply a means to making your website super easy to use, not just on your laptop, but across several devices. It must be compatible even with a smartphone as well as have widgets and menus that make it navigable. However, say you have come across a theme that you are absolutely in love with, but is not as responsive as it should be. In that case, you can go for some optimization. While selecting a responsive theme, try looking out for features like flexible images and fluid site grids that can operate well on non-desktop devices.
- Guaranteed Support & Updates
If you are opting for a premium / paid product, it must always be accompanied by superior quality support. They can be in the form of online tickets, emails or forums. In case you face issues with a premium theme, you can always seek guidance from developers. However, the story is somewhat different in the case of a free theme. Developers do not usually spend hours providing support for free themes. An authentic WordPress theme is essentially updated on a regular basis. Bugs are fixed and security patches are applied with time. A theme not updated regularly is a bad theme. The changelog of a theme lets you know how frequently the theme is updated.
- Try the Demo
When out shopping, we all tend to try on our selected clothes before we make the final purchase. Similarly, before you install a theme, make sure you try the demo first like the demo tool we have for The Bootstrap Themes. Some of the basic things to pay attention to before finalizing a theme are odd grits, decipherable fonts, proper use of visual content and useful or interactive signs and ideas for a user. Playing around with the demo version lets you see if the selected theme fits your brand requirements and if it is easy to use. If it fits the bill, you can download it.
- Choose one With Easy-to-Read Fonts
Grabbing your visitor’s attention and keeping them hooked to your site is one of the main purposes of selecting an attractive theme. While doing so, you want to make navigation as easy as possible for users. Use fonts that are readable, sophisticated and simple. Some popular fonts on the internet for the past few years are Volkorn, Lato, Arvo and Open Sans. WordPress themes provide you with customization options, wherein if you are familiar with CSS, you can easily adjust the font. Nevertheless, free themes often have limitations when it comes to their customizing options, of which you need to make a note while selecting a theme. You can choose from a few amazing premium themes like Lifestyle Magazine Pro and TheMoments Pro which are equipped with easy customization options.
Picking the right WordPress theme is half the battle won for you. The essential fact is that no theme is perfect, but you must be careful about deciding on one that fits most of your basic needs as well as the above-mentioned factors. Once you settle down on both, be it a premium or a free theme, your website is the best fit to greet the world!
Good luck with your WordPress Theme search!