Introduction Best Blog Template WordPress 2017
Over the previous 10 years, I’ve used a lot of different WordPress topics and have been very disappointed. Up until recently, I was utilizing MyThemeShop, that was pretty good. But I still had to perform a great deal of customization to allow it to do and operate how I needed it to. A couple weeks ago I decided to give GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it is undoubtedly the finest WordPress theme I have discovered in 10 years. I had been blown away and am now moving all of my sites to GeneratePress. I’ll go into precisely why in my in-depth GeneratePress review below. And if you’re wondering, yes I’ve tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X motif, Divi as well as several other lightweight and heavier multi-purpose themes. Best Blog Template WordPress 2017
GeneratePress is a totally free WordPress theme made by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I have really seen it for years in the WordPress repository. Most of you realize that I am fairly picky when it comes to web performance, and so I tend to ignore everything in the repository. Typically because a lot of things on there isn’t that great, or not encouraged for long. However, in this circumstance, this was a mistake. The theme now has more than half a million downloads, 80,000+ busy matches, with over 500 5-star ratings. So obviously Tom is doing something right here.
I Really installed the free version of the motif and in a matter of 15 minutes purchased the premium version. I could tell right off the bat, the developer was thinking exactly how I was imagining a theme should get the job done. And I will go into that more below, but let’s first look at a number of the qualities. I will be covering the premium version of the theme, because it’s worth . Actually, Tom, if you ever read this and are seeing Scottsdale, Arizona, coffees on me.
Super lightweight and fast. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable things you do not want running. This is one of the biggest reasons I adore GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks great across all of the devices.
Schema built-in, for greater outcomes in SERPs.
Dramatic integration with the WordPress Customizer. I have not been a fan of this customizer in the past, but Tom does it correctly.
Compatible with all popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Great browser service back to IE8.
Additionally, it works great with the popular fast-growing Elementor page builder. If you would like to dive into even more customizations, these really are a terrific combo. I have also read that people using Beaver Builder have had success.
Font wonderful built in.
Tons of hooks and filters that make it good for programmers.
Excellent active service from the programmer. Normally, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation can be unbelievable. Besides have good documentation on their site, the subject has been around long enough that everything I wholeheartedly throughout the setup process was found inside a few seconds from their forum.
Going Deep Into GeneratePress
Now it’s Time for the fun part! I always test a brand new theme right out of the box with no customizations to see how quickly the base is. This tells me a great deal of what I could expect by the time that I add everything to it. Running the stock GeneratePress WordPress motif on Kinsta hosting clocked in at a whopping 265 ms load time. I was quite impressed.
One Thing I was concerned about with GeneratePress was that the modular design was going to generate a lot of big files, but this isn’t the case. You can tell that Tom actually worked hard on making sure every file loaded in GeneratePress is as small as possible. With HTTP/2, the amount of files isn’t as important. However, the dimensions is! Take a look at a few of the center GeneratePress files below:
/generatepress/css/unsemantic-grid. min.css 2.9 KB
/generatepress/style. css 7.1 KB
/generatepress/css/mobile. min.css 1.6 KB
/generatepress/js/navigation. min.js 1.1 KB
/generatepress/js/dropdown. min.js 1.5 KB
This is a programmer that cares about functionality! And I’ve Seen the same during all the premium add-ons. They are as small as you can possibly get them. In fact, Font Awesome is probably the biggest file included. And that is not even his. Together with Font Awesome 5 arriving round the corner, we can anticipate that to secure smaller also.
The premium add-ons Are installation in what I’d call a modular layout. You can activate/deactivate anything you are not using to guarantee they do not load on your website. As the co-developer of the perfmatters plugin which has a script manager built, I felt right at home for this. Everything ought to be designed this way.
If You’re curious, I’m using the following add-ons on this site:
No Child Theme Needed
One of The best features of GeneratePress is that I no longer need to use a Child theme. This makes my life much easier. No longer editing my functions.php or header.php documents. I will literally upgrade my GeneratePress theme this very minute and not lose one customization. The hooks add-on certainly can help make this possible. It permits you to incorporate custom code/PHP everywhere throughout your WordPress website. Best Blog Template WordPress 2017
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post you have a great deal of options. You are able to change the sidebar layout and the footer widgets.
You Can quickly swap a page involving the default option to a full width page, in addition to disable components.
The WordPress customizer choices is where GeneratePress really shines! Remember, lots of these options are enabled from the premium add-ons. I can not show you everything, otherwise, we’d be here daily. However, let me show you few which really come in handy.
Another Plugin I highly recommend grabbing is your free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this can be created by the exact same developer as GeneratePress. It allows you a super easy way to add responsive columns to any page or article. Characteristics include:
Desktop grid thickness
Tablet grid width
Mobile grid thickness
Add custom courses
Insert custom inline designs
Equal height columns
Here is An example below:
You might want to Also catch his amazing WP Display Posts plugin too. View my featured articles on the sidebar of this site? That is using the WP Show Posts plugin. I have it set to show posts from a specific”featured” category. You can also have it show last modified/updated articles, recent articles, etc.. I am using the free version and it works great.
The Segments add-in in the premium version of GeneratePress lets you perform all kinds of things in terms of design. Think of it like a page builder without the bloat. GeneratePress is definitely not only for blogs! I’m in fact utilizing GeneratePress to our ecommerce site (perfmatters.io) that is operating Easy Digital Downloads. Don’t hesitate to check it out. But as you can see below, it looks like a site.
For all those Of you that are regular readers, you likely did not even notice I changed the whole motif that powers woorkup.com. It only took me about an hour for GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop motif that I had spent annually customizing. Here’s a comparison under.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My old MyThemeShop theme was already pretty fast, but I spent a lot of time customizing it. In fact, I’ve gotten a great deal of emails from you guys asking me to publish all of my customizations. My advice now is, simply get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
With the New GeneratePress motif I was able to attain faster speeds and 600 fewer lines of code! And keep in mind, I do not have a child motif. All the customizations were made using the awesome GP hooks and snippets plugin (both CSS and PHP).
Like the WordPress theme I have working on woorkup? You are in luck. Tom asked if he can create a copy of woorkup to your new GeneratePress site library. I am pleased to allow you to know that you can now put in my woorkup motif in your GeneratePress website with just a single click! It’s called the Marketer theme. Get started using a fantastic blog layout instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
I also Moved within my personal website, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a motif from Array Themes. It’s a pretty basic minimum site, since I don’t use it to get much. As you can see it already loaded pretty quickly.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to duplicate the entire look 100% in GeneratePress in under an hour. And since you can view it loads faster! Amazing. I was even able to get rid of a couple plugins that weren’t needed due to GP.
forgemedia.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
I also Moved over our organization site, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a theme from Array Themes. It’s a fairly basic minimal site, as we just use it to our LLC. As you can see it loaded pretty fast. Best Blog Template WordPress 2017
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to move everything over and get it looking just how I needed it in under an hour. And since you can see it loads faster! Amazing. I managed to eliminate a total of four plugins and it dropped my whole page weight 2x!
I can not express my Excitement about finding GeneratePress and I am moving over all of my sites for this (which includes some EDD e-commerce sites). After I’ve got my 9 sites all running in GP with no child themes, my entire life will be a breeze! The developer has revived my faith in multi-purpose themes, which when done the right way, can actually perform faster.
And The best thing is, I now have a billion more options to choose from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Great For…
GeneratePress Is the perfect option for performance-focused users who want to have the ability to personalize and control precisely how their site appears.
You Can make GeneratePress do pretty much anything. And since GeneratePress has a focus on functionality, the website that you build will have a great foundation to make it load fast.
Since Of that, those who build WordPress websites for a living love GeneratePress. They’ll normally pair it with a WordPress page builder and use it for literally any kind of site.
However GeneratePress Might Not Be A Fantastic Combination If…
…you Need something which will immediately look perfect out of the box.
For Example, if you know you want to produce a style blog, you might be happier picking out a market theme that is developed exclusively for fashion bloggers.
While GeneratePress has gotten a lot simpler to use, as a result of its pre-built Site Library, GeneratePress still looks very barebones if you initially install it.
So To make GeneratePress look how you would like it to, you will most likely need to go in and customize things. And though the significant advantage of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, many users, especially casual users, don’t like having to make those changes themselves.
GeneratePress Features Which Make It Unique
Here Are some of the particular features that explain why GeneratePress is so popular.
Lots Of Customization Options In The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Past Functionality, another place where GeneratePress does well is its customization choices.
GeneratePress Uses the WordPress Customizer for customization, and this can be convenient because you will be able to see all of the changes that you make in real time.
The Free variant of GeneratePress gives you adequate possibilities, but should you own GeneratePress Premium, you will have the ability to customize nearly everything about your website.
For Example, if you go in the Design region, you may configure comprehensive settings to your:
- Header — you can move your header round and change its styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, including sticky menus
- Sidebar design — you can use one or two sidebars
- Blog post layout — such as featured picture size, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — just like how many widgets to add
Similarly, The Typography area lets you control the font to get each and every element on your website, such as buttons:
And You also get a detailed region to control the color of each and every element on your site.
All Whatsoever, GeneratePress will provide you a lot more customization options in the WordPress Customizer than most other topics. This amount of detail may be a little overwhelming if you’re a newcomer. But as soon as you understand how the preferences come together, you’ll have complete control over how your website looks.
Optimized Performance And Fast Page Load Times
Across All of its attributes, GeneratePress consistently has a focus on excellent performance and clean code. The whole motif is less than 30 kB, which is about as small as you are ever going to find for a WordPress theme. Even most other optimized WordPress topics are still 200+ kB. And a few poorly coded topics can even exceed 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also does not have any code dependencies, which helps you avoid the render blocking error that Google Pagespeed Insights often cites.
Place That together, and you obtain a superfast-loading motif. How quickly? To give you a sense, I ran a small test.
First, I set up an empty site utilizing a haphazard popular WordPress.org theme (Envo Magazine). After testing its functionality with Pingdom, it
- Had a performance tier of 77
- Loaded in 1.05 moments
- Had a page size of 243.9 kB
- Had 15 asks
That is Not bad at all! However, GeneratePress can do better.
Next, I triggered GeneratePress on the same test website without altering anything else. Here’s how GeneratePress failed:
- Had a performance grade of 87, 10 points greater
- Loaded in 666 ms, ~37% faster
- Had a page size of 26.8 kB, ~90% smaller
- Had 9 asks, ~40% less
If You do that same test with other themes, you are going to continue to find that GeneratePress is one of the fastest-loading WordPress topics in life. Best Blog Template WordPress 2017
Other Useful Premium Extensions, Plus Much Modular Approach
Past Giving you more design controls in the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium comes with a lot of other helpful features such as:
- Elements — a exceptional feature that lets you create customized hooks, page headers, or design templates.
- Page Header — lets you create a unique page header on a per-page basis.
- Sections — that is sort of like lightweight page construction. It lets you create separate”sections” onto a page, each with their own design and column settings.
To Remain lightweight, GeneratePress also provides you a modular port where you could select and choose what characteristics you want to trigger.
That Way, you do not need to slow down your site for a feature that you’re never going to use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Website
In The past, you needed to construct GeneratePress sites from a blank canvas regardless of what, which left the theme difficult for casual users to install.
Earlier In 2018, though, the programmer added a new Website Library attribute for GeneratePress Premium users that lets you easily import any one of the 25+ pre-built demonstration websites .
You Can import them right from the WordPress dashboard.
Yes — this site still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click on a few buttons to import a demo site.
Page-Level Settings Give You Comprehensive Control Over Each Piece Of Content
With Most topics, every post and page will use the same configurations for the most part. You may have some custom formats or templates — but you don’t have very much control beyond that.
GeneratePress Changes that by giving you a new Design meta name box for each and every post and page:
You Can use this meta box to:
- Change how many sidebars your site uses, or the sidebar orientation (such as altering the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose how many footer widgets to use
- Disable certain components, such as your header, navigation menu, article featured picture, article title, or footer
- Create a special”container” for your page builder
Where These controls are the most helpful is if you are using a WordPress page builder.
By Disabling certain components, you are in a position to produce the correct baseline for your own page builder design, making it easy to create custom content as needed. Best Blog Template WordPress 2017
GeneratePress Pricing: Affordable And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Heart GeneratePress motif can be obtained at no cost at WordPress.org.
Nevertheless, If you are seriously interested in utilizing GeneratePress, I feel you need to buy the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that is what makes the theme so flexible. The free version does not give you almost as numerous configurations in the WordPress Customizer. And you’ll also lose out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium can be still fairly affordable. It costs only $39.95, which gives you use on unlimited sites. You’ll also get a 40% discount if you would like to renew to continue receiving support and updates following the first year (you can, obviously, keep using GeneratePress after the initial year without beating — you just won’t get any more updates).
When You believe that the normal premium WordPress theme will often cost around $60, GeneratePress offers a fantastic price.
As I mentioned, I don’t think GeneratePress is for everyone.
If You desire a niche-specific theme, you can probably save time by purchasing a theme that fits your requirements for your niche out of day one.
But If you’re willing to spend time altering settings, GeneratePress’ mode controls give you the flexibility to flip it into any sort of WordPress website. Or, you might even have the ability to locate a starter site that fits your needs to save a little time.
Additionally, It is one of the fastest-loading WordPress topics you will locate. So if you’re seeking the best performance possible, utilizing GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s base is a good decision.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, so you should have no problem making your site load in under one second. Best Blog Template WordPress 2017