Launching your first WordPress website is exciting, you have picked the perfect domain name, zeroed down on a hosting company, decided to use WordPress for your CMS platform, now, you need to choose a WordPress theme for your website.
Your excitement is soon burst when realizing that there are almost unlimited theme options to pick from.
It is a daunting task to pick one theme from a sea of themes, but one we are glad to help with.
So, let us get started.
How to Choose A Perfect WordPress Theme?
Choose a theme that meets your business needs
When building websites from scratch, we often follow a systematic development process; the early stages of project definition and scoping are intended to discover the business needs, Wireframing and Site Architecture are focused at identifying features for the website that meet the business.
The use of themes have, however, disrupted this development process, individuals are locked to the features that are built into the theme. So how does one choose a theme with that in mind?
- The rule of thumb and the easiest way to pick a theme is to choose a theme related to the industry your business operates in.
WordPress is rich, there are thousands of themes one can choose from, and most likely there is a theme built for your industry – if you are in real estate, look for a real estate theme, if you are a charity organization look for a charity theme, as musician chooses a music theme.
These niche themes most likely have the features that meet the needs of your business.
- Additionally, the theme you choose should be compatible with the must-have plugins and other third-party tools that you may need for your website.
- In line with your business needs, choose a theme that closely fits your brand identity, think of your brand colors, fonts, and brand character. Choose a theme whose look and feel is a natural fit with your logo and other custom designs.
2. Consider the ease of use – think page builders
Creating posts and pages and other custom posts should not be complicated, have this in mind, therefore. What determines the ease of use is the type of framework or page builder the theme uses.
There is a learning curve for every page builder, with the multitude of choice it becomes a significant factor in determining what theme to use, for complete novices, using a theme built with WPBakery or Visual Composer Website Builder might be more comfortable than using a theme built with Elementor.
The page builder also determines the weight of the site eventually; for instance, Beaver Builder is known to be lighter than most page builders.
3. Choose a Responsive theme
If there is a must feature for any website today, whether it is a WordPress website or not is responsiveness to whatever devices users use to access it.
Responsiveness means that a website will look fine or adjusts to the size of a device.
A decade or so ago, this was not important as most of the website traffic was on desktop or laptop screens, today, people access websites across a range of devices, 59” TVs, standard computers, tablets and today with mobile devices.
More than 80% of website traffic today is on a mobile device; your website should, therefore, look good and fit smaller screens.
4. Choose a theme with good Speed and performance
After responsive designs, one should look at the speed and performance of the theme; slow websites are a turn off to most users, there is no point of having a great looking website that takes ages to load, you should strike a balance between functionality, visual appeal and performance.
Before you purchase a theme, you can test the demo site using the with Google PageSpeed insights or GTmetrix. The demo test should give you an idea of how your website will perform with the theme you test.
5. Choose a Search Engine Friendly theme.
If you expect organic traffic from search engines, then you need a website that can easily be optimized.
Bloated code hurts your chances of ranking high on SERPs since it hurts the performance of the website, which is big metric search engines look at.
6. Choose a theme that is backed with Updates and support.
WordPress is a regularly updated content management system, so should your theme.
Any theme you decide to go with should have clear documentation on and an active support forum.
Since the core WordPress CMS if often updates and for security purposes work with a theme that whose developer releases updates to patch up security bugs or to play nice with the latest WordPress releases.
Using a theme for a website is the easiest and most cost-friendly way to get started online. For many DIY fans, the challenge could be one you can embark on their own.
I hope the information in this article will help in your journey.
If you are considering a particular theme and need advice, it is okay to share with us in the comments below.
You may also want to learn how to find out which theme a WordPress site is using.