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Over the past 10 decades, I’ve used a lot of different WordPress topics and have been very disappointed. Up till recently, I had been utilizing MyThemeShop, which was fairly good. But I still had to perform a lot of customization to allow it to perform and operate how I needed it to. A couple of weeks ago I decided to give GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it is undoubtedly the best WordPress theme I’ve discovered in 10 years. I was blown away and am now moving all my sites to GeneratePress. I will enter precisely why in my comprehensive GeneratePress review under. And if you are wondering, yes I have tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X motif, Divi as well as many other lightweight and thicker multicolored themes. Best Template WordPress Magazine
GeneratePress is a free WordPress theme made by Tom Usborne, a developer from Canada. I have actually seen it for years in the WordPress repository. Most of you know that I’m pretty picky when it comes to web performance, and so I have a tendency to dismiss everything from the repository. Typically because a lot of stuff on there is not that great, or not supported for long. However, in this case, that was a mistake. The theme currently has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ active matches, with over 500 5-star ratings. 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 superior version. I could tell right off the bat, the developer was thinking precisely how I was imagining a theme should work. And I will go into that more below, but let us first look at some of the qualities. I’m going to be covering the premium edition of the theme, because it’s worth . Actually, Tom, in the event that you ever read this and are visiting Scottsdale, Arizona, java on me.
Super lightweight and fast. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable items you do not need running. This is only one of the greatest reasons I love GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks great across all of the devices.
Schema built-in, for greater outcomes in SERPs.
Impressive integration using 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 popular fast-growing Elementor page builder. If you would like to dive into even more customizations, these are a terrific combo. I’ve also read that individuals using Beaver Builder have had success.
Font awesome built in.
Tons of filters and hooks which make it good for developers.
Excellent active support from the programmer. Normally, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation can be unbelievable. Besides have good documentation on their site, the theme has been around long enough that everything I Googled throughout the setup process was found inside a couple of seconds in their forum.
Diving Into GeneratePress
Now it is Time to the fun part! I test a brand new theme right out of the box with no customizations to just see how quickly the base is. This tells me a lot of what I can expect by the time 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 concerned about with GeneratePress was that the modular design was going to produce a whole lot of big files, but that is not the case. You may tell that Tom literally worked hard on ensuring that every record packed in GeneratePress is as little as possible. With HTTP/2, the number 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 performance! And I have Seen exactly the same during each the premium add-ons. They are literally as small as you can possibly get them. In fact, Font Awesome is most likely the biggest file contained. And that isn’t even his. With Font Awesome 5 arriving round the cornerwe could anticipate that to secure smaller too.
The premium add-ons Are setup in what I would call a modular layout. It is possible to activate/deactivate whatever you are not using to ensure they don’t load on your website. As the co-developer of the perfmatters plugin which has a script manager built-in, I felt right at home for this. Everything should be made this way.
If You’re interested, I’m using the next add-ons on this website:
No Child Theme Needed
One of The best features of GeneratePress is that I no longer need to use a Child motif . This makes my life so much easier. No more editing my functions.php or header.php files. I will literally upgrade my GeneratePress motif this exact moment and not shed a single customization. The hooks add-on definitely helps make it possible. It permits you to add custom code/PHP anywhere throughout your WordPress website. Best Template WordPress Magazine
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post you have a great deal of alternatives. You are able to change the sidebar layout and the footer widgets.
You Can easily swap a page involving the default option to a full width page, as well as disable elements.
The WordPress customizer choices is really where GeneratePress really shines! Bear in mind, a lot of these options are enabled by the premium add-ons. I can not show you everything, otherwise, we would be here all day. However, allow me to show you few which actually come in handy.
Another Plugin I highly recommend grabbing is the free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this can be made by precisely the exact same programmer as GeneratePress. It allows you a super simple way to incorporate responsive columns into any page or post. Characteristics include:
Desktop grid thickness
Tablet grid thickness
Mobile grid thickness
Add custom classes
Add custom inline designs
Equal height columns
Here is An example below:
You might want to Also catch his amazing WP Show Posts plugin also. See my featured articles 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 can also have it show past modified/updated articles, recent articles, etc.. I’m using the free version and it works great.
The Sections add-on in the premium version of GeneratePress allows you to do all kinds of things concerning design. Think of it like a webpage builder with no bloat. GeneratePress is certainly not only for blogs! I am in fact using GeneratePress for our ecommerce site (perfmatters.io) that is operating Easy Digital Downloads. Don’t hesitate to check it out. However, as you can see below, it looks like a blog.
For all those Of you that are regular readers, you probably did not even notice I changed the entire motif that forces woorkup.com. It just took me about an hour to get GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop motif that I had spent annually customizing. Here’s a comparison under.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My older MyThemeShop theme was already pretty fast, but I invested a lot of time customizing it. In fact, I have gotten a great deal of emails from you guys asking me to print all my customizations. My advice today is, simply get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
Together 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 motif. Each of the customizations were created using the awesome GP hooks and snippets plugin (both CSS and PHP).
Like the WordPress theme I have working on woorkup? You’re in luck. Tom asked if he could make a copy of woorkup to your new GeneratePress site library. I’m happy to let you know that now you can put in 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
I also Moved over my personal website, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a motif from Array Themes. It is a pretty basic minimum website, since I don’t use it for much. As you can see it loaded pretty quickly.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to duplicate the entire appearance 100 percent in GeneratePress in under one hour. And as you can view it loads even faster! Amazing. I was able to eliminate a few plugins which weren’t needed due to GP.
forgemedia.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
I also Moved over our business website, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I was using a theme from Array Themes. It is a fairly basic minimal website, as we just use it to our LLC. Since you can see it already loaded pretty fast. Best Template WordPress Magazine
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to move everything over and get it looking exactly how I needed it in under one hour. And since you can view it loads even faster! Amazing. I was able to get rid of a total of four plugins and it dropped my whole page burden 2x!
I can’t express my Excitement about locating GeneratePress and I’m moving over all of my sites to it (which comprises several EDD e-commerce websites ). After I have my 9 sites all running in GP with no child themes, my life is going to be a breeze! The programmer has restored my faith in multi-purpose themes, and that when done the correct way, can actually perform faster.
And The best thing is, I now have a thousand more choices to choose from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Good For…
GeneratePress Is the ideal alternative for performance-focused users who want to be able to customize and control precisely how their site looks.
You Can make GeneratePress do pretty much anything. And since GeneratePress has a focus on performance, the site that you build will have a great foundation to make it load fast.
Since Of that, those who assemble WordPress websites for a living love GeneratePress. They’ll typically pair it with a WordPress site builder and use it for literally any type of website.
However GeneratePress Might Not Be A Fantastic Combination If…
…you Want something which will instantly 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 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 almost certainly will need to go in and personalize things. And while the significant benefit of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, some users, particularly casual users, don’t like having to make those changes .
GeneratePress Features Which Make It Unique
Here Are some of the specific features that clarify why GeneratePress is so common.
Lots Of Customization Options In The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Beyond Performance, another place where GeneratePress does nicely is its customization options.
GeneratePress Uses the WordPress Customizer for customization, which is convenient as you will be able to see all the changes that you make in real time.
The Free variant of GeneratePress gives you decent possibilities, but should you have GeneratePress Premium, you will have the ability to customize pretty much all about your website.
For Example, if you go into the Design area, you can configure detailed settings for yourown:
- Header — you can move your header around and change its own styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, including sticky menus
- Sidebar layout — you can utilize a Couple of sidebars
- Blog post design — such as featured picture dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — like how many widgets to add
Similarly, The Typography area lets you control the font for every single element on your website, including buttons:
And You also receive a thorough area to control the colour of every single element on your website.
All Whatsoever, GeneratePress will give you much more customization options in the WordPress Customizer than most other topics. This amount of detail might be a bit overwhelming if you’re a newcomer. But once you understand the way the preferences come together, you will have complete control over how your site appears.
Optimized Performance And Fast Page Load Times
Across All its attributes, GeneratePress always includes a focus on exceptional performance and clean code. The whole motif is less than 30 kB, which will be about as little as you are ever going to find for a WordPress theme. Even most other optimized WordPress themes are still 200+ kB. And some badly coded themes can even exceed 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also has no code dependencies, which helps you avoid the leave blocking error that Google Pagespeed Insights often mentions.
Put That collectively, and you get a superfast-loading theme. How quickly? To give you a sense, I conducted a small test.
First, I set up an empty 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! However, GeneratePress can perform.
Next, I activated GeneratePress on exactly the exact same test website without changing anything else. Here’s how GeneratePress did:
- 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% fewer
If You do that same test with different themes, you’ll continue to find that GeneratePress is one of the fastest-loading WordPress topics in life. Best Template WordPress Magazine
Other Helpful 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 helpful features like:
- 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 building. It permits you to create different”sections” on a page, each with their own layout and column preferences.
To Stay lightweight, GeneratePress also provides you a modular interface where you could select and choose what characteristics you want to activate.
That Way, you do not need to slow your site down for a quality that you’re never going to use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Site
In The last, you had to construct GeneratePress websites from a blank canvas regardless of what, which made the motif difficult for casual users to set up.
Earlier In 2018, however, the developer added a new Site Library feature for GeneratePress Premium users which lets you easily import any among those 25+ pre-built demo sites.
You Can import them directly from the WordPress dashboard.
Yes — this site still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click on a few buttons to import a presentation site.
Page-Level Settings Give You Detailed Control Over Each Bit Of Content
With Most themes, each post and page will use the very same settings for the most part. You might have some custom formats or templates — however you don’t have very much control beyond that.
GeneratePress Changes that by giving you a brand new Design meta box for each and every post and page:
You Can use this meta box to:
- Change the number of sidebars your site uses, or the sidebar orientation (such as altering the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose the number of footer widgets to utilize
- Disable certain elements, such as your header, navigation menu, post featured image, post title, or footer
- Create a special”container” to your page builder
Where These controls are the most helpful is if you’re using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain elements, you’re able to produce the correct baseline for your page builder layout, which makes it easy to create custom articles as needed. Best Template WordPress Magazine
GeneratePress Pricing: Cheap 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 purchase the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that’s what produces the theme so flexible. The free version does not give you nearly as numerous configurations in the WordPress Customizer. And you will also lose out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium is also still fairly affordable. It costs only $39.95, and that provides you use on unlimited websites . You’ll also get a 40% discount if you want 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 won’t get any more updates).
When You believe that the typical premium WordPress theme will often cost around $60, GeneratePress offers a great value.
As I said, I do not believe GeneratePress is for everybody.
If You desire a niche-specific motif, you can probably save time by purchasing a theme that satisfies your requirements for your niche from day one.
However, If you are willing to spend some time changing 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 find a starter site that fulfills your needs to save some time.
Additionally, It is one of the fastest-loading WordPress topics that you will find. Therefore, if you’re seeking the best performance possible, using GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s base is a good decision.
If You blend it with fast-loading hosting, so you should have no problem making your website load in under one second. Best Template WordPress Magazine