One of the great things about WordPress is how easily and quickly you can change the entire design with a new theme. All you need to do is install a new ‘theme’ and hey presto – you immediately have an entirely new look for your website. I tell people, WordPress is like a Barbie doll and the theme is Barbie’s dress. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve changed the theme for my North San Diego Business podcast site.
There are tons of great themes available for WordPress too, which include free and paid options. The question then, is how you go about choosing the right one for your blog.
Paid Vs Free
The first thing to do is to decide if you want a free or paid WordPress theme. Here, many people will choose the free option in order to get started quickly and for free. The one thing you definitely want is theme support. I found a wonderful theme several years ago, which was very flexible with several different page designs. However, they stopped supporting the theme, meaning that when WordPress would change, they stopped making the compatible changes to the theme. Over time, parts of the theme would break until I had no other choice than to change the theme. You want theme support, especially if you want to customize your theme in any way.
If you hope to make money from a WordPress blog or site though, a free theme is actually a mistake. Not only do paid themes tend to be much more professional looking (understandably) but they also have the advantage of being less common. A big problem for many WordPress blogs is that they can end up looking like every other site on the net. If you want to make sure that your site stands out and has its own identity, then you probably shouldn’t go with a ‘cut and paste’ free theme. My favorite theme, and the one I’m using for Web With Deb, is the Divi Theme by Elegant Themes. (yes, I am an affiliate because I love their themes and have been using them for years)
Next you need to think about the requirements you have for your site and blog. What features do you absolutely need for your blog that you can’t go without? One of the things you can’t go without is a responsive theme. What this means is that the layout of your website is going to change slightly depending on the size of the device that it’s being viewed on. It also will abbreviate your navigational menu, making it easier to look at your different pages on a mobile device. This is very important if you hope to get mobile traffic and these days it’s very much expected for any modern website. Additionally, Google will not rank your site well if it’s not responsive.
Look and Feel
Of course what’s also important is that you have the right look and feel for your blog or site. It isn’t enough that you simply like the look of your site (though this is important), what you also need to do is to ensure that the theme works within your niche/industry and communicates the right message. If you have the wrong look and feel for your blog then you might end up sending mixed signals about what your business provides. This is another reason why I use Divi. It has a built in “page builder” meaning I can layout any page, or post, the way I want. It builds on rows and columns, with plenty of built in elements like sliders, blurbs, video, etc. This offers you the ability to create completely unique pages, and posts for your site.
So, are you ready to check out some cool new themes for your WordPress site?