Top Tips To Help You Choose The Best WordPress Theme
Posted by Manmeet Anand
One of the advantage of using WordPress platform is the fact that it has plenty of quality free themes, along with custom and premium themes. A good theme of any website not only improves its first impression, but also helps in search engine optimization. With plethora of WordPress themes, choosing the right for your business can be a time taking task. After reading this article, you can easily choose a perfect theme that is worth your time, business and money. Here are some tips to spot the best themes for your WordPress website:
1.Know the Reason of Making Website
First and foremost thing that helps in choosing a theme is to identify the main purpose of your website. For instance, if the main aim of your website is to collect the email addresses for the future promotions then ‘Generate theme by StudioPress’ may be the best option for you. Further, if you want to create a wedding website, then the ‘Luscious theme’ may be the perfect option because of its bright colors. Therefore, you should know the purpose of making a website that will help in easing the task of searching suitable theme.
While thinking about your website purpose, you also need to be acquainted with whether you intend to monetize it, and if yes, what procedures you might use to do it. For instance, if you are planning to use Google Adsense in the future, make sure to choose a theme that provides enough space to insert the appropriate ads. Furthermore, it is also important to estimate how your site will grow. You should also find out answers of questions like “Will my theme give me enough space to develop the website, or do my current needs already max out its features? You should choose a theme that gives you the opportunity to expand on the functionality and size of your site in the future.
2.Note Down the Features You Need
It is always good to choose a theme that comprises all the features that you desire. It will also save your time and money from unwanted design customization after the installation of theme. Customization of free themes can be more challenging, as they may not give you as many options of customization through the WordPress admin panel. Therefore, for the average WordPress users (who have little knowledge about theme customization), I would suggest finding a theme which comprises all your desired features.
Further, the admin panel of WordPress allows you to filter themes by your desired features. Just go to Appearance >> Themes >> Install Themes and you will find this filter.
In addition to this, you should note down all the information about the styles, which should include:
- Price and certificate
- Personalized design
- Different colors available
- Easily flexible headlines
- Widget-ready areas
- Customized website assistance
- Video and picture helpful
- Assistance for social networking incorporation
3.Select SEO Friendly Theme
While selecting themes, you should always check if they are search engine friendly or not. SEO friendly themes are important for your website as well as business growth. You can also optimize your website with various SEO tricks, but it is always better to start with a SEO-friendly theme to save you time, effort and money. If you don’t know the way to choose SEO friendly theme, following tips can help you a lot:
- Page loading speed– You can run the theme’s demo page to see how promptly the theme loads. The ideal time of loading is below 1.5 seconds. You should not select those themes that come with all kinds of bells and whistles which result in a slow speed of page loading.
- Clear coding- Poor coding of any theme results lots of issues, such as easy for hackers to breach your site, cross-browser design issues and slower loading speeds. All of these issues impact on SEO; therefore it is required to ensure that your WordPress theme is coded with great care, and in HTML5 and CSS3.
- Responsive Design- With rise of smartphones, demands for mobile friendly sites are increasing with great pace. Responsive design of any website also affect its SEO, therefore, you should choose only responsive themes for your website.
- Site Architecture- Since the Panda Update of Google, site architecture plays an important for SEO. Your theme will largely responsible for the structuring of internal linking, navigation, and the hierarchy of your content. You should make sure that no web page is more than 3 clicks away from the home page.
- Social Integration- You should choose only those themes that encourage social sharing and enable authorship and social meta data. Choose those themes which shows social sharing buttons in a clean and attractive manner, so that users can easily share the post from whatever point in the article.
- Microdata Markup– If you are planning to run a website with reviews or recipes, you should aim to find theme that supports adding microdata, so that search engines can display your rich snippet data or star ratings in their ranking pages.
4.Know Your Budget
The WordPress themes vary in costs. While some themes are free, others cost you hundreds of dollars. Premium themes of WordPress require payment; therefore, it is required to know your budget before selecting the themes. Further, not all themes can be bought completely, as some themes are only licensed for limited time period. While choosing a paid theme for your website, you should pay attention to whether this theme requires a one-time payment, or whether you will need to renew its license after fixed time period.
5.Explore Themes from Multiple Galleries
You should check out multiple galleries and marketplaces for themes to compare designs and features. For instance, it is possible to find a theme design which you like in a free gallery, but after that you notice that it lacks a good admin panel and some functionality that you needed.
By looking at multiple theme galleries, you are likely to find an appropriate and optimum theme with a similar look that offers more value. There are many free themes available in marketplace that mimic the look of popular premium and paid themes. At the same time, you should be aware of many theme websites, as the themes of these sites can contain hidden links or malicious code. For your simplicity, I have listed some trusted places of themes:
- WordPress Theme Directory (free)
- Web2Feel (free)
- WordPress.com Theme Showcase
6.Plugins are Important Criteria for Selecting Themes
Almost every theme in WordPress comes with plugins, but extended functionality is always an important aspect before choosing theme and it is here that some themes outshine others. You should take a closer look at your themes, stringently assess their utility, and see whether the developers of theme had gone the extra mile to create customize extensions for that theme.
The first thing to check out is a good variety in plugins. You can choose themes that are most considerate of your needs by checking the number of plugins. Some plugins can be more useful than others. You should choose those themes that have plugins which can satiate your demands. For instance, there are various plugins that help you to administrate your website. You could also be benefitted from an analytics plugin and perhaps an easy-to-manage plugin for improving the comment system in your webpage.
7.Read Reviews of Customers
Many WordPress themes give you the option to try before you buy. You should take a tour of the control panel of theme and check out the features, customization options, and how your website would look like.
With many trials you will never exactly know what kind of experience you will have until you have purchased it and can use it in full. Therefore, it is quite important to look at the reviews of customers for that particular theme, especially if you plan to pay for that theme. If any theme doesn’t have customer reviews, you can still look for the comments and evaluations of customers through a search on the search engines. You can also try searching “discussion of [insert theme name]” on Google. Many themes of WordPress come with support forums where you can easily discuss about the theme and associated issues related to it. You can read lots of information about a theme by looking through the threads left on these discussion boards.
8.Read Service Terms of Themes
While choosing a free or commercial WordPress theme, you should be well aware of the terms of service. If a free theme requires a lot of back links, then you should move on. There are thousands of free themes in the market and you can pick another one. You should always follow the terms of service, as you should appreciate the work of all designers so that they can keep producing good themes for us.
Choosing a right theme for your WordPress website is essential for attracting visitors. As you can see you need to take several factors into consideration before selecting a WordPress theme, especially if you are running a business. If you do not have plenty of time to spend on tweaking theme, a free theme is ideal as it is quick to set up. I am sure above mentioned tips will ease your task of finding suitable WordPress theme that can satiate your need. You can share your views on these tips in the comment box, and if you have better ideas please do let us know.