Intro Best Responsive WordPress Themes 2016 Free
Over the previous ten years, I’ve used a lot of different WordPress themes and have been very disappointed. Up till recently, I was utilizing MyThemeShop, which was fairly good. But I still had to do a lot of customization to make it perform and work how I needed it to. A few weeks ago I decided to provide GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it is by far the best WordPress theme I have found in a decade . I was blown away and am now moving all of my websites to GeneratePress. I will go into exactly why in my in-depth GeneratePress review under. And if you are wondering, yes I have attempted Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X theme, Divi as well as many other lightweight and heavier multi-purpose themes. Best Responsive WordPress Themes 2016 Free
GeneratePress is a totally free WordPress theme created by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I have actually seen it for many years from the WordPress repository. Most of you realize that I am fairly picky when it comes to web performance, and so I have a tendency to ignore everything from the repository. Typically because a great deal of things on there is not that great, or not supported for long. Nonetheless, in this circumstance, that was a mistake. The motif now has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ active installs, with over 500 5-star ratings. So obviously Tom is doing something right here.
I Actually set up the free version of the theme and in a matter of 15 minutes bought the superior version. I could tell right off the bat, the programmer was thinking exactly how I was envisioning a theme should work. And I will go into that more below, but let’s first look at a number of the features. I’m going to be covering the superior version of the theme, because it’s worth . In fact, Tom, in the event that you ever read this and are seeing Scottsdale, Arizona, java on me.
Super lightweight and fast. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable things you do not need running. This is one of the greatest reasons I adore GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks great across all of the devices.
Schema built-in, for better outcomes in SERPs.
Impressive integration with all the WordPress Customizer. I have not been a lover of the customizer previously, but Tom does it right.
Compatible with all popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Fantastic browser service back to IE8.
Additionally, it works great with the favorite fast-growing Elementor page builder. If you want to dive into even more customizations, these are a great combo. I’ve also read that people using Beaver Builder have had success.
Font awesome built-in.
A lot of filters and hooks that make it good for developers.
Great active support from the developer. On average, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation is also unbelievable. Besides have good documentation on their website, the subject has been around long enough that what I wholeheartedly during the setup process was found within a couple of seconds in their forum.
Going Deep Into GeneratePress
Now it is Time to the fun part! I always test a brand new theme right out of the box with no customizations to see how fast 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 load time. I was quite impressed.
One Thing I was concerned about with GeneratePress was that the modular design was going to generate a whole lot of big files, but this is not the situation. You can tell that Tom actually worked hard on ensuring that every record loaded in GeneratePress is as little as possible. With HTTP/2, the amount of files isn’t as important. But the dimensions is! Have a peek at some of the center 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
That is a developer that cares about functionality! And I have Seen the same throughout each of the premium add-ons. They are as small as you can possibly get them. In reality, Font Awesome is most likely the biggest file included. And that is not even his. Together with Font Awesome 5 arriving round the cornerwe could expect this to get smaller too.
The premium add-ons Are setup in what I would call a modular design. It is possible to activate/deactivate anything you aren’t using to guarantee they don’t load on your website. Since the co-developer of this perfmatters plugin that has a script manager built-in, I felt at home with this. Everything should be designed this way.
If You are curious, I am using the following add-ons on this website:
No Child Theme Needed
One of The best characteristics of GeneratePress is that I no longer need to use a Child motif . This makes my life so much easier. No longer editing my functions.php or header.php files. I can literally update my GeneratePress theme this very minute rather than lose one customization. The hooks add-on definitely can help make this possible. It permits you to incorporate custom code/PHP anywhere throughout your WordPress website. Best Responsive WordPress Themes 2016 Free
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On each Page/post that you have a great deal of alternatives. You are able to alter the sidebar layout and the footer widgets.
You Can easily swap a page between the default option to a complete width page, in addition to disable elements.
The WordPress customizer choices is really where GeneratePress really shines! Remember, a lot of these choices are enabled by the superior add-ons. I can’t show you everything, otherwise, we’d be here daily. But let me show you few which actually come in handy.
Another Plugin I highly recommend grabbing is your free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this is also made by the same programmer as GeneratePress. It enables you a super simple way to incorporate responsive columns to any page or post. Features include:
Desktop grid thickness
Tablet grid width
Mobile grid thickness
Add custom classes
Add custom inline designs
Equal height columns
This is An example under:
You May Want to Also catch his amazing WP Show Posts plugin also. See my featured posts on the sidebar of this website? That is using the WP Display Posts plugin. I have it set to display posts from a particular”featured” category. You might also get 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 do all sorts of things concerning design. Think of it like a webpage builder with no bloat. GeneratePress is certainly not only for blogs! I am in reality using GeneratePress for our ecommerce site (perfmatters.io) that is running Easy Digital Downloads. Feel free to check it out. But as you can see below, it looks like a site.
For those Of those that are regular readers, you probably didn’t even notice that I changed the whole theme that powers woorkup.com. It just took me about an hour to get GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop motif that I had spent a year customizing. Here is a comparison under.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My older MyThemeShop motif was pretty fast, but I invested a lot of time scrutinizing it. In fact, I have gotten a lot of emails from you guys asking me to publish all my customizations. My advice today is, just get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
With the New GeneratePress theme I was able to achieve faster speeds and 600 fewer lines of code! And remember, I don’t have a child theme. All the customizations were made using the wonderful GP hooks and snippets plugin (both CSS and PHP).
Like the WordPress theme I’ve running on woorkup? You are in luck. Tom asked if he could create a copy of woorkup to your new GeneratePress blog library. I am happy to allow you to know that you can now install my woorkup motif in your own GeneratePress site with just a click! It’s called the Marketer motif. Get started using a great blog layout instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved within my private site, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a motif from Array Themes. It is a pretty basic minimum site, since I don’t use it to get much. Since you can see it already loaded pretty quickly.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to replicate the whole look 100% in GeneratePress in under an hour. And since you can see it loads even faster! Amazing. I was able to get rid of a few plugins that weren’t needed because of GP.
forgemedia.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
I also Moved over our business website, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I was using a motif from Array Themes. It is a fairly basic minimal website, as we just use it for our LLC. As you can see it already loaded pretty quickly. Best Responsive WordPress Themes 2016 Free
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been 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 even faster! Amazing. I was able to eliminate a total of four plugins and it dropped my total page weight 2x!
I can’t express my Excitement about finding GeneratePress and I’m moving over all my websites for this (which comprises some EDD e-commerce websites ). After I’ve got my 9 sites all running in GP with no child themes, my life is going to be a breeze! The developer has revived my faith in multi-purpose subjects , and that when done the right way, can actually perform faster.
And The best news is, I now have a thousand more options to choose from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Good For…
GeneratePress Is the ideal option for performance-focused users who wish to be able to customize and control precisely how their site appears.
You Can make GeneratePress perform pretty much anything. And since GeneratePress has a focus on functionality, the site that you build will have a great base to make it load fast.
Since Of that, those who assemble WordPress sites for a living love GeneratePress. They will normally pair it with a WordPress site builder and use it for literally any kind of site.
But GeneratePress Might Not Be A Good Fit If…
…you Want something which will immediately appear perfect out of the box.
For Example, if you know you wish to produce a style blog, you may be happier choosing a market theme that’s developed exclusively for trend bloggers.
While GeneratePress is becoming a great deal easier to use, thanks to its pre-built Site Library, GeneratePress still looks very barebones when you initially install it.
So To create GeneratePress look how you want it to, you will most likely need to go in and personalize matters. And while the significant advantage of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, many users, particularly casual users, don’t like having to make those changes themselves.
GeneratePress Features That Make It Unique
Here Are a few of the specific features that clarify why GeneratePress is indeed popular.
Lots Of Customization Options From The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Past Functionality, another place where GeneratePress does nicely is its customization choices.
GeneratePress Uses the WordPress Customizer for customization, which can be convenient as you’ll be able to see all of the changes that you make in real time.
The Free variant of GeneratePress provides you decent possibilities, but if you have GeneratePress Premium, you will be able to customize pretty much everything about your website.
For Example, if you go in the Layout area, you may configure detailed settings for yourown:
- Header — you can move your header around and alter its own styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, including sticky menus
- Sidebar design — you can utilize one or two sidebars
- Blog post design — such as featured picture size, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — just like the number of widgets to include
Similarly, The Typography area lets you control the font for each and every element on your site, including buttons:
And You also get a detailed region to control the color of each and every element on your website.
All In all, GeneratePress will provide you a lot more customization choices from the WordPress Customizer than most other topics. This amount of detail might be a little overwhelming if you are a beginner. But once you understand how the settings come together, you’ll have complete control on how your website looks.
Optimized Performance And Quick Page Load Times
Around All of its attributes, GeneratePress always includes a focus on exceptional performance and tidy code. The entire theme is less than 30 kB, which is about as small as you’ll ever find for a WordPress theme. Even most other optimized WordPress topics are still 200+ kB. And a few poorly coded themes can even surpass 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also has no code dependencies, which helps you avoid the render obstructing error that Google Pagespeed Insights often cites.
Place That collectively, and you obtain a superfast-loading motif. How quickly? To give you a sense, I ran a little test.
First, I set up an empty site utilizing a random popular WordPress.org theme (Envo Magazine). After testing its functionality with Pingdom, it:
- Had a performance tier of 77
- Loaded in 1.05 seconds
- Had a page size of 243.9 kB
- Had 15 asks
That is Not bad in any way! But GeneratePress can perform.
Next, I activated GeneratePress on exactly the exact same test website without altering anything else. Here is how GeneratePress failed:
- Had a performance tier of 87, 10 points better
- Loaded in 666 ms, ~37% quicker
- Had a page size of 26.8 kB, ~90% smaller
- Had 9 requests, ~40% fewer
If You perform the exact same test with different themes, you are going to continue to find that GeneratePress is among those fastest-loading WordPress topics in existence. Best Responsive WordPress Themes 2016 Free
Other Useful Premium Extensions, Plus Much Modular Approach
Beyond Giving you more design controls in the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other useful features such as:
- Elements — a exceptional feature which allows you create customized hooks, page headers, or layout templates.
- Page Header — allows you create a unique page header on a per-page basis.
- Sections — this is sort of like lightweight page construction. It permits you to create separate”sections” onto a webpage, each with their own design and column preferences.
To Stay lightweight, GeneratePress also provides you a modular interface where you could pick and choose exactly which characteristics you want to activate.
That Way, you don’t need to slow down your site for a feature which you’ll never use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Site
In The last, you had to build GeneratePress sites from a blank canvas regardless of what, which left the motif difficult for casual users to set up.
Earlier In 2018, however, the developer added a fresh Website Library attribute for GeneratePress Premium users which allows you easily import any one of the 25+ pre-built demonstration websites .
You Can import them right from the WordPress dashboard.
Yes this Website still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click a couple buttons to import a demo site.
Page-Level Settings Provide You Detailed Control Over Every Bit Of Content
With Most themes, every post and page will use the very same configurations for the most part. You may have some custom templates or formats — however you do not have very much control beyond that.
GeneratePress Changes that by giving you a brand 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 changing the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose how many footer widgets to use
- Disable certain elements, such as your header, navigation menu, article featured picture, article title, or footer
- Create a special”container” to your page builder
Where These controls are the most useful is if you’re using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain components, you are in a position to create the proper baseline for your page builder design, which makes it effortless to create custom content as needed. Best Responsive WordPress Themes 2016 Free
GeneratePress Replies: Affordable And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Heart GeneratePress theme can be obtained at no cost at WordPress.org.
Nevertheless, If you’re seriously interested in utilizing GeneratePress, I believe you need to purchase the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that’s what produces the theme so flexible. The free version does not give you almost as numerous configurations from the WordPress Customizer. And you’ll also miss out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium is also still fairly affordable. It costs just $39.95, and that gives you use on unlimited websites . You will also get a 40% discount if you would like to renew to keep on receiving support and updates following the initial year (you can, of course, keep using GeneratePress after the initial year without renewing — you won’t get any more updates).
When You consider that the normal premium WordPress theme will usually cost around $60, GeneratePress provides a great value.
As I mentioned, I do not think GeneratePress is for everybody.
If You desire a niche-specific theme, you can probably save time by purchasing a theme that fits your needs for your niche out of day one.
But If you’re willing to spend some time altering preferences, then GeneratePress’ style controls give you the flexibility to flip it into any sort of WordPress site. Or, you might even have the ability to locate a starter website that fits your needs to save some time.
Additionally, It is one of the fastest-loading WordPress topics you will find. Therefore, if you’re seeking the best performance possible, utilizing GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s base is a great decision.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, so you shouldn’t have any problem making your website load in under one minute. Best Responsive WordPress Themes 2016 Free