Intro Best Free WordPress Templates For Websites
Over the previous 10 years, I have used a lot of different WordPress topics and have been really disappointed. Up till recently, I was utilizing MyThemeShop, which was pretty good. However, I still had to do a lot of customization to make it do and operate how I wanted it to. A couple weeks ago I decided to give GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it’s undoubtedly the finest WordPress theme I have discovered in a decade . I was dismissed and am moving all of my sites to GeneratePress. I will go into precisely why in my in-depth GeneratePress review below. And if you are wondering, yes I’ve attempted Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X motif, Divi in addition to several other lightweight and thicker multi-purpose themes. Best Free WordPress Templates For Websites
GeneratePress is a totally free WordPress theme made by Tom Usborne, a developer from Canada. I’ve really seen it for years in the WordPress repository. Most of you know that I’m pretty picky when it comes to web performance, so I have a tendency to ignore everything in the repository. Typically because a great deal of things on there is not that good, or not supported for long. However, in this case, this was a mistake. The motif currently has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ busy installs, with over 500 5-star evaluations. So clearly Tom is doing something right here.
I Really installed the free version of the theme 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 us first look at some of the features. I’m going to be covering the superior edition of the theme, since it’s worth . Actually, Tom, in the event that you ever read this and are seeing Scottsdale, Arizona, java on me.
Super lightweight and quick. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable items you don’t need running. This is only one of the greatest reasons I adore GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks fantastic across all of the devices.
Schema built-in, for greater results in SERPs.
Impressive integration using the WordPress Customizer. I have not been a lover of this customizer in the past, but Tom does it correctly.
Compatible with popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Great browser support 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 great combo. I’ve also read that people using Beaver Builder have had success.
Font wonderful built in.
A lot of hooks and filters which make it great for programmers.
Great active support from the developer. On average, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation is also incredible. Besides have great documentation on their site, the theme has been around long enough that everything I Googled during the setup procedure was found inside a few seconds from their own forum.
Going Deep Into GeneratePress
Now it is Time to the fun part! I test a brand new theme right from the box without any customizations to just see how quickly the base is. This tells me a great deal of what I can expect by the time that I add everything for this. Running the stock GeneratePress WordPress theme on Kinsta hosting clocked in at a whopping 265 ms loading time. I was quite impressed.
One Thing I was worried about with GeneratePress was that the modular layout was going to generate a lot of big files, but this is not the situation. You may tell that Tom literally worked hard on ensuring every file loaded in GeneratePress is as small as possible. Together with HTTP/2, the number of files isn’t as significant. But the size is! Take a look at a few of the core GeneratePress files under:
/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 developer that cares about performance! And I’ve Seen exactly the same during each the premium add-ons. They’re as small as possible get them. In reality, Font Awesome is probably the largest file included. And that isn’t even his. With Font Awesome 5 coming around the cornerwe could anticipate this to secure smaller too.
The premium add-ons Are setup in what I would call a modular design. You can activate/deactivate whatever you are not using to ensure they do not load on your site. Since the co-developer of the perfmatters plugin that has a script manager built, I felt right at home with this. Everything ought to be designed this way.
If You are interested, I’m using the following add-ons on this site:
No Child Theme Needed
One of The best features of GeneratePress is I no more need to use a young child theme. This makes my life so much easier. No more editing my functions.php or header.php files. I can literally upgrade my GeneratePress theme this exact minute and not shed a single customization. The hooks add-on definitely can help make this possible. It permits you to incorporate custom code/PHP everywhere throughout your WordPress site. Best Free WordPress Templates For Websites
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post you have a great deal of options. You are able to change the sidebar design and the footer widgets.
You Can quickly swap a page between the default to a full width page, as well as disable components.
The WordPress customizer choices is really where GeneratePress really shines! Remember, lots of these choices are permitted by the premium add-ons. I can not show you everything, otherwise, we’d be here all day. But let me show you couple which really come in handy.
Another Plugin I highly suggest grabbing is the free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this can be created by precisely the same developer as GeneratePress. It enables you a super easy way to add responsive columns to any page or article. Characteristics include:
Desktop grid width
Tablet grid thickness
Mobile grid thickness
Insert Customized courses
Add custom inline styles
Equal height columns
Here is An example below:
You might want to Also grab his incredible WP Show Posts plugin too. View my featured articles on the sidebar of this site? That is using the WP Display Posts plugin. I have it set to show posts from a particular”featured” category. You might also have it show last modified/updated articles, recent posts, etc.. I’m using the free version and it works great.
The Segments add-in in the premium edition of GeneratePress allows you to do all sorts of things concerning design. Consider it like a webpage builder with no bloat. GeneratePress is certainly not just for blogs! I’m in reality utilizing GeneratePress to our ecommerce site (perfmatters.io) that is operating Easy Digital Downloads. Don’t hesitate to look it over. However, as you can see below, it looks like a site.
For those Of you that are regular readers, you likely didn’t even notice I changed the whole motif that powers woorkup.com. It only took me about an hour to get GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop theme that I had spent annually customizing. Here’s a comparison below.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My older MyThemeShop theme was pretty fast, but I spent a great deal of time scrutinizing it. In fact, I’ve gotten a great deal of emails from you guys asking me to publish all of my customizations. My advice today is, simply get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
With the New GeneratePress theme I was able to attain faster speeds and 600 fewer lines of code! And remember, I do not have a child motif. Each of the customizations were created with the wonderful 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 make a copy of woorkup for the new GeneratePress blog library. I am happy to allow you to know that now you can put in my woorkup motif on your own GeneratePress site with just a single click! It is known as the Marketer theme. Get started with a fantastic blog layout instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved within my personal website, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I was using a motif from Array Themes. It’s a pretty basic minimum site, as I don’t use it to get much. As you can see it loaded pretty quickly.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to replicate the entire look 100% in GeneratePress in under an hour. And as you can view it loads faster! Amazing. I was able to eliminate a couple plugins which weren’t needed due to GP.
forgemedia.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved over our business website, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a motif from Array Themes. It is a pretty basic minimal site, as we just use it for our LLC. Since you can see it loaded pretty fast. Best Free WordPress Templates For Websites
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to again move everything over and get it looking exactly how I needed it in under one hour. And since you can see it loads even faster! Amazing. I was able to eliminate a total of four plugins and it dropped my total page weight 2x!
I can not express my Excitement about locating GeneratePress and I am moving over all my websites for this (which includes some EDD e-commerce websites ). After I have my 9 websites all running in GP with no child topics, my entire life is going to be a breeze! The programmer has revived my faith in multi-purpose subjects , which when done the right way, can actually perform quicker.
And The best thing isI now have a thousand more options to pick from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Good For…
GeneratePress Is the ideal alternative for performance-focused users that want to have the ability to personalize and control precisely how their site looks.
You Can make GeneratePress do pretty much anything. And because GeneratePress has a focus on performance, the website that you build will have a fantastic foundation to make it load quickly.
Because Of that, those who assemble WordPress sites for a living love GeneratePress. They will normally pair it with a WordPress page builder and use it for literally any type of website.
But GeneratePress Might Not Be A Good Combination If…
…you Want something that will immediately look perfect from the box.
For Example, if you know you want to create a style blog, you might be happier choosing a market theme that’s developed exclusively for trend bloggers.
While GeneratePress has gotten a lot simpler to use, as a result of its pre-built Site Library, GeneratePress still seems very barebones when you first install it.
So To make GeneratePress look how you want it to, you will most likely will need to go in and customize matters. And though the significant benefit of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, many users, particularly casual users, do not 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 indeed popular.
Plenty Of Customization Options In The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Past Functionality, another place where GeneratePress does nicely is its customization options.
GeneratePress Utilizes the WordPress Customizer for customization, which can be convenient because you’ll be able to see all of the changes that you make in real time.
The Free version of GeneratePress provides you decent possibilities, but if you own GeneratePress Premium, you’ll have the ability to customize pretty much everything about your site.
For Example, if you go in the Design area, you may configure comprehensive settings for yourown:
- Header — you can move your header round and change its styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, including sticky menus
- Sidebar layout — you can use one or two sidebars
- Blog post design — like featured image dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — like the number of widgets to include
Likewise, The Typography place lets you control the font for each and every element on your site, including buttons:
And You also get a thorough region to control the colour of every single element on your website.
All Whatsoever, GeneratePress will give you much more customization choices from the WordPress Customizer compared to most other themes. This level of detail might be a little overwhelming if you’re a beginner. But once you understand how the settings come together, you will have complete control over how your website looks.
Optimized Performance And Quick Page Load Times
Around All of its features, GeneratePress always has a focus on exceptional performance and tidy code. The whole motif is less than 30 kB, which will be about as small as you’ll ever find for a WordPress theme. Even most other optimized WordPress themes are still 200+ kB. And a few badly coded topics can even exceed 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also has no code dependencies, which will help you avoid the render blocking error that Google Pagespeed Insights often mentions.
Place That collectively, and you get a superfast-loading motif. How quickly? To give you an idea, I conducted a little test.
First, I put up a vacant site utilizing a haphazard popular WordPress.org motif (Envo Magazine). After analyzing its functionality with Pingdom, it:
- Had a performance grade of 77
- Loaded in 1.05 seconds
- Had a page size of 243.9 kB
- Had 15 requests
That’s Not bad at all! But GeneratePress can do better.
Next, I activated GeneratePress on the same test website without changing anything else. Here is how GeneratePress failed:
- Had a performance tier of 87, 10 points better
- Loaded in 666 ms, ~37% faster
- Had a page size of 26.8 kB, ~90% smaller
- Had 9 asks, ~40% less
If You perform that same test with different themes, you’ll continue to see that GeneratePress is one of those fastest-loading WordPress topics in life. Best Free WordPress Templates For Websites
Other Useful Premium Extensions, Plus Much Modular Approach
Past Giving you more style controls from the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other helpful features like:
- Elements — a exceptional feature which allows you create custom hooks, page headers, or design templates.
- Page Header — allows you create a exceptional page header on a per-page basis.
- Sections — that is sort of like lightweight page building. It lets you create separate”sections” on a webpage, each with their own design and column settings.
To Stay lightweight, GeneratePress also provides you a modular interface where you can select and choose exactly which features you would like to activate.
That Way, you don’t need to slow your site down for a quality which you’re never going to use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Website
In The last, you needed to construct GeneratePress websites from a blank canvas regardless of what, which made the theme difficult for casual users to set up.
Earlier In 2018, though, the programmer added a new Website Library attribute for GeneratePress Premium users that lets you easily import any among the 25+ pre-built demonstration websites .
You Can import them directly from your WordPress dashboard.
Yes this Website still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click a few buttons to import a demo site.
Page-Level Settings Give You Detailed Control Over Each Bit Of Content
With Most topics, every page and post will use the very same settings for the most part. You might have some custom templates or formats — however you do not have very much control past that.
GeneratePress Changes that by giving you a new Layout meta name box for each and every page and post:
You Can use this meta box to:
- Change the number of sidebars your website uses, or the sidebar orientation (like altering the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose the number of footer widgets to utilize
- Disable certain components, like your header, navigation menu, article featured image, article title, or footer
- Create a special”container” for your page builder
Where These controls would be the most useful is if you’re using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain elements, you’re in a position to produce the correct baseline for your page builder layout, making it easy to create custom content as needed. Best Free WordPress Templates For Websites
GeneratePress Replies: Cheap And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Heart GeneratePress motif is available at no cost at WordPress.org.
That said, If you are seriously interested in using GeneratePress, I believe you need to buy the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that is what produces the theme so elastic. The free version doesn’t give you almost as numerous configurations in the WordPress Customizer. And you will also lose out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium can be still fairly affordable. It costs just $39.95, and that gives you use on infinite sites. You will also get a 40% discount if you want to renew to keep on receiving support and updates following the initial year (you can, obviously, continue using GeneratePress following the first year without beating — you won’t get any more upgrades ).
When You believe that the normal premium WordPress theme will often cost around $60, GeneratePress offers a fantastic value.
As I said, I don’t think GeneratePress is for everyone.
If You desire a niche-specific theme, you can probably save time by buying a theme that satisfies your needs for your niche out of day one.
However, If you are willing to spend time altering preferences, then GeneratePress’ style controls give you the flexibility to flip it into any type of WordPress website. Or, you may even be able to locate a starter site that fulfills your needs to save some time.
Additionally, It is among those fastest-loading WordPress themes you will locate. So if you’re seeking the best performance possible, using GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s foundation is a good decision.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, you should have no difficulty making your site load in under one second. Best Free WordPress Templates For Websites