Many factors come into play when choosing a WordPress theme for your website.
- Is it mobile friendly/responsive
- Does it fit our brand and colours
- Do we like the feel of it
- Will it be user-friendly
There are many more questions! One that is often not asked at all or even thought about is, does it perform well? As in speed, fluidity, etc.
Of course, all of these questions are valid ones when thinking about the theme for your website, but if your theme does not perform well, it will undoubtedly impact the answers to the other questions you have.
Function over flashiness!
Yes, we have all seen the all singing all dancing themes that have funky effects, slide in transitions, autoplay video and all the bells and whistles you could wish for BUT as fun as this is it’s not always good!
We would always suggest going for function over flashiness, firstly think about your users and how you browse the internet.
As technology has progressed, we have evolved to expect websites to load in split seconds, if they don’t we often move to the next one.
Get bombarded with flashy graphics rotating images and moving content all over? How long is it before you think I can’t handle this I’m off!
Not only this but all those bells and whistles come with a performance hit. Each element has to be loaded and pulled from the server making page loading slower and increasing the risk of your visitors growing impatient.
We, of course, have our favourite places to find fast themes and we will list some below, but mainly you want to look for these four things when hunting for your website theme.
- It needs to be responsive/mobile friendly.
- It can have some moving or transitional elements but don’t go overboard!
- Does it perform well, load fast and function well?
- Has the theme been updated fairly recently?
That last one is an important one as well.
You will find when browsing around for themes some will have been abandoned as in they will not have been updated for months if not years meaning they likely have old less optimised and secure code.
We advise choosing one that has been updated in at least the last 6 months.
Free vs Paid
It is true there are many in both camps. Here you can read about the common pros and cons of free and paid themes. Premium or free theme
Where do I find these so-called themes?
Ok so there are millions out there just search google for WordPress themes, and you will see! We often suggest a few places to look, though. Want to learn how to create a child theme the easy way? Take a look at this post!
WordPress own theme repository. Wordpress has a huge list of themes, all free! These themes are strictly reviewed by WordPress themselves.
My Theme Shop We love these guys as all of their themes are built with speed in mind!
Colorlib These guys always have some great looking themes
Athemes A great collection of business themes
StudioPress Recommended by many WordPress enthusiasts
Themify Recommended by many WordPress enthusiasts