Introduction Best WordPress Library Themes
Over the previous ten years, I have used a lot of different WordPress themes and have been very disappointed. Up till recently, I had been utilizing MyThemeShop, that was pretty excellent. But I had to perform a lot of customization to make it perform and operate how I wanted it to. A couple of weeks ago I decided to provide GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it is by far the finest WordPress theme I’ve found in a decade . I was dismissed and am now moving all my websites to GeneratePress. I will enter precisely why in my in-depth GeneratePress review below. 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 WordPress Library Themes
GeneratePress is a free WordPress theme made by Tom Usborne, a developer from Canada. I have actually seen it for years from the WordPress repository. Most of you know that I am pretty picky when it comes to web performance, so I tend to dismiss everything from the repository. Typically because a great deal of stuff on there isn’t that good, or not encouraged for long. However, in this circumstance, this was a mistake. The theme currently has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ active installs, with over 500 5-star evaluations. So clearly Tom is doing something right here.
I Really installed the free version of the motif and in a matter of 15 minutes bought the superior version. I could tell right off the bat, the programmer was thinking precisely how I was envisioning 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’m going to be covering the premium version of the theme, since it’s worth . In fact, Tom, in the event that you read this and so are seeing Scottsdale, Arizona, java on me.
Super lightweight and quick. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable things you don’t want running. This is one of the greatest reasons I love GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks great across all of the devices.
Schema built-in, for greater results in SERPs.
Dramatic integration with all the WordPress Customizer. I have not been a fan of the customizer previously, but Tom does it right.
Compatible with all popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Fantastic browser support back to IE8.
It also works great with all the popular 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.
Tons of hooks and filters which make it good for developers.
Excellent active support from the programmer. On average, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation can be incredible. Besides have great documentation on their site, the theme has existed long enough that what I Googled during the setup process was found within a couple of seconds from their forum.
Diving Into GeneratePress
Now it’s Time for the fun part! I always test a brand new theme right out of the box without any customizations to just see how quickly the foundation is. This tells me a lot of what I can expect by the time that I add everything for this. Running the inventory GeneratePress WordPress motif on Kinsta hosting clocked in at a whopping 265 ms loading time. I was very impressed.
One Thing I was concerned about with GeneratePress was that the modular layout was going to generate a lot of big files, but this is not the situation. You can tell that Tom actually worked hard on making sure that every file packed in GeneratePress is as little as possible. Together with HTTP/2, the number of documents isn’t as important. But the size is! Have a peek at some of the core 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 the same throughout each of the premium add-ons. They’re literally as small as you can possibly get them. In reality, Font Awesome is probably the biggest file included. And that isn’t even his. Together with Font Awesome 5 coming round the corner, we can anticipate this to secure smaller also.
The premium add-ons Are installation in what I’d call a modular layout. It is possible to activate/deactivate anything you are not using to ensure they don’t load on your site. As the co-developer of the perfmatters plugin which has a script manager built, I felt right at home with this. Everything should be designed this way.
If You’re interested, 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 have to use a young child motif . This makes my life much simpler. No more editing my functions.php or header.php files. I will literally upgrade my GeneratePress theme this exact moment rather than shed a single customization. The hooks add-on certainly can help make this possible. It allows you to add custom code/PHP anywhere throughout your WordPress site. Best WordPress Library Themes
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post you have a lot of alternatives. You can change the sidebar layout and the footer widgets.
You Can easily swap a page involving the default to a complete width page, as well as disable elements.
The WordPress customizer choices is really where GeneratePress really shines! Remember, a lot of these choices are permitted from the premium add-ons. I can’t show you everything, otherwise, we would be here all day. But let me show you few which really come in handy.
Another Plugin I highly suggest grabbing is your free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this can be made by the exact same programmer as GeneratePress. It allows you a super simple way to incorporate responsive columns to any page or post. Features include:
Desktop grid thickness
Tablet grid thickness
Mobile grid width
Insert custom courses
Add custom inline styles
Equal height columns
This is An example under:
You might want to Also grab his incredible WP Show Posts plugin too. View my featured posts on the sidebar of this site? That is using the WP Display Posts plugin. I have it set to display posts from a particular”featured” category. You might also have it show past modified/updated articles, recent posts, etc.. I’m using the free version and it works great.
The Sections add-on in the premium edition of GeneratePress lets you perform all sorts of things concerning design. Think of it like a page builder with no bloat. GeneratePress is certainly not just for blogs! I’m in reality utilizing GeneratePress for our ecommerce site (perfmatters.io) which is operating Easy Digital Downloads. Don’t hesitate to look it over. But as you can see below, it looks like a blog.
For all those Of those that are regular readers, you likely did not even notice I changed the whole motif that forces woorkup.com. It only took me about an hour to get GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop theme which I had spent a year customizing. Here’s a comparison under.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My old MyThemeShop motif was already pretty fast, but I spent a great deal of time scrutinizing it. In reality, I’ve gotten a lot of emails from you guys asking me to publish all of my customizations. My advice now is, just 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 don’t have a child theme. Each of the customizations were made 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 could make a copy of woorkup to your brand new GeneratePress site library. I am pleased to allow you to know that you can now install my woorkup theme on your GeneratePress website with just a click! It is called the Marketer motif. Get started with a fantastic blog layout instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved over my personal site, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a theme from Array Themes. It is a pretty basic minimum site, as I do not 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 appearance 100% in GeneratePress in under an hour. And as you can see it loads 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 organization website, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I was using a motif from Array Themes. It is a fairly basic minimal site, as we simply use it for our LLC. As you can see it already loaded pretty quickly. Best WordPress Library Themes
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to move everything over and get it looking exactly how I wanted it in under an hour. And since you can see it loads even faster! Amazing. I managed to get rid of a total of four plugins and it dropped my total page weight 2x!
I can not express my Excitement about finding GeneratePress and I’m moving over all my sites to it (which includes several EDD e-commerce websites ). Once I’ve got my 9 sites all running in GP with no child themes, my entire life will be a breeze! The programmer has restored my faith in multi-purpose subjects , which when done the right way, can actually perform quicker.
And The best news is, I now have a thousand more choices to choose from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Good For…
GeneratePress Is the perfect option for performance-focused users that want to be able to personalize and control precisely how their site looks.
You Can make GeneratePress perform pretty much anything. And because GeneratePress has a focus on performance, the website that you build will have a fantastic base to make it load fast.
Because Of that, people who build WordPress sites for a living love GeneratePress. They’ll typically pair it with a WordPress page builder and use it for literally any type of site.
However GeneratePress Might Not Be A Good Fit If…
…you Want something that will instantly look perfect out of the box.
For Example, if you know you want to create a fashion blog, you may be happier choosing a market theme that’s developed exclusively for trend bloggers.
Even though GeneratePress has gotten a great deal easier to use, thanks to its pre-built Site Library, GeneratePress still seems very barebones if you first install it.
So To make GeneratePress look how you want it to, you’ll almost certainly will need to go in and customize matters. 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 a few of the specific characteristics that explain why GeneratePress is so popular.
Lots Of Customization Options In The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Past Performance, another area where GeneratePress does nicely is its customization options.
GeneratePress Utilizes the WordPress Customizer for customization, and this can be convenient because you’ll be able to see all of the changes that you make in real time.
The Free variant of GeneratePress gives you adequate possibilities, but if you have GeneratePress Premium, you will have the ability to customize nearly everything about your website.
For Example, if you go into the Design region, you can configure comprehensive settings for your:
- Header — you can move your header round and alter its own styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, including sticky menus
- Sidebar design — you can use a Couple of sidebars
- Blog post design — such as featured image dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — just like the number of widgets to include
Likewise, That the Typography area lets you control the font for each and every element on your site, including buttons:
And You also receive a thorough area to control the color of each and every element on your site.
All In all, GeneratePress will give you a lot more customization choices in the WordPress Customizer compared to most other topics. This amount of detail may be a little overwhelming if you’re a newcomer. But as soon as you understand the way the preferences come together, you will have full control on how your site looks.
Optimized Performance And Fast Page Load Times
Across All its features, GeneratePress consistently includes a focus on exceptional performance and clean code. The whole theme is less than 30 kB, which is about as little as you are ever going to find for a WordPress theme. Even most other optimized WordPress topics are still 200+ kB. And a few badly coded topics can even surpass 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also does not have any code dependencies, which will help you avoid the leave blocking error that Google Pagespeed Insights often mentions.
Place That together, and you obtain a superfast-loading motif. How quickly? To give you an idea, I ran a little test.
First, I set up a vacant website utilizing a random 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 in any way! However, GeneratePress can do better.
Next, I activated GeneratePress on exactly the exact same test site without altering anything else. Here is how GeneratePress did:
- Had a performance grade of 87, 10 points greater
- Loaded in 666 ms, ~37% quicker
- Had a page size of 26.8 kB, ~90% smaller
- Had 9 requests, ~40% fewer
If You perform that same test with different topics, you are going to continue to see that GeneratePress is among the fastest-loading WordPress themes in life. Best WordPress Library Themes
Other Useful Premium Extensions, Plus A Modular Approach
Past Giving you more style controls in the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other useful features like:
- Elements — a exceptional feature which lets you create customized hooks, page headers, or layout templates.
- Page Header — lets you create a exceptional 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 layout and column preferences.
To Remain lightweight, GeneratePress also provides you a modular port where you could pick and choose what characteristics you want to activate.
That Way, you don’t have to slow down your site for a quality that you’re never going to use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Site
In The past, you had to build GeneratePress websites from a blank canvas no matter what, which made the motif difficult for casual users to set up.
Earlier In 2018, though, the programmer added a new Site Library attribute for GeneratePress Premium users that lets you easily import any one of the 25+ pre-built demo sites.
You Can import them directly from your WordPress dashboard.
Yes — this site still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click a few buttons to import a presentation site.
Page-Level Settings Give You Comprehensive Control Over Every Bit Of Content
With Most topics, each page and post 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 past that.
GeneratePress Changes that by giving you a brand new Design meta name box for each and every page and post:
You Can use this meta box to:
- Change how many sidebars your website uses, or the sidebar orientation (such as altering the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose the number of footer widgets to use
- Disable certain elements, such as your header, navigation menu, article featured image, article title, or footer
- Create a special”container” to your own page builder
Where These controls would be the most helpful is if you are using a WordPress page builder.
By Disabling certain elements, you’re in a position to create the proper baseline for your own page builder design, making it easy to create custom content as needed. Best WordPress Library Themes
GeneratePress Pricing: Cheap And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Core GeneratePress theme can be obtained at no cost at WordPress.org.
Nevertheless, If you are serious about using GeneratePress, I believe you should purchase the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that’s what produces the theme so elastic. The free version does not give you almost as many settings in the WordPress Customizer. And you’ll also lose out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium is also still quite affordable. It costs just $39.95, which provides 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 after the initial year (you can, obviously, continue using GeneratePress following the first year without beating — you won’t get any more upgrades ).
When You consider the typical premium WordPress theme will often cost around $60, GeneratePress offers a great value.
As I mentioned, I don’t believe GeneratePress is for everybody.
If You desire a niche-specific theme, you can probably save time by purchasing a theme that satisfies your needs for your market from day one.
But If you are willing to spend time altering preferences, then GeneratePress’ style controls give you the flexibility to flip it into any sort of WordPress site. Or, you might even be able to find a starter website 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, using GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s foundation is a great choice.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, so you should have no difficulty making your website load in under one minute. Best WordPress Library Themes