Introduction Best WordPress Themes 2016
Over the past 10 years, I have used a lot of different WordPress themes and have been very disappointed. Up until recently, I had been utilizing MyThemeShop, which was pretty excellent. But I had to do a great deal of customization to make it do and work how I needed it to. A couple weeks ago I decided to give GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it’s by far the best WordPress theme I have discovered in a decade . I had been dismissed and am now moving all my websites to GeneratePress. I will enter exactly why in my comprehensive GeneratePress review below. And if you’re wondering, yes I have tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X motif, Divi as well as many other lightweight and thicker multicolored themes. Best WordPress Themes 2016
GeneratePress is a free WordPress theme made by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I’ve really seen it for years from the WordPress repository. Most of you realize that I’m pretty picky when it comes to web performance, so I tend to ignore everything in the repository. Typically because a lot of stuff on there isn’t that great, or not supported for long. Nonetheless, in this circumstance, this was a mistake. The motif now has more than half a million downloads, 80,000+ active matches, 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 premium version. I could tell right off the bat, the programmer was thinking precisely how I was imagining a theme should work. And I will go into that more below, but let’s first look at some of the qualities. I’m going to be covering the premium version of the subject, 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 quick. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable things you do not want running. This is only one of the biggest reasons I adore GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks fantastic across all devices.
Schema built-in, for better results in SERPs.
Dramatic integration using the WordPress Customizer. I have not been a lover of the customizer in the past, but Tom does it correctly.
Compatible with popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Fantastic browser service back to IE8.
Additionally, it works great with all the popular fast-growing Elementor page builder. If you want to dive into even more customizations, these are a terrific combo. I have also read that individuals using Beaver Builder have had success.
Font wonderful built-in.
A lot of hooks and filters which make it great for developers.
Great active service from the developer. On average, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation can be unbelievable. Besides have good documentation on their website, the theme has existed long enough that what I wholeheartedly throughout the setup procedure was found within a few seconds from their forum.
Going Deep Into GeneratePress
Now it’s Time for the fun part! I always test a 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 could 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 very impressed.
One Thing I was worried about with GeneratePress was that the modular layout was going to produce a lot of big files, but that isn’t the situation. You can tell that Tom actually worked hard on ensuring that every file loaded in GeneratePress is as small as possible. With HTTP/2, the number of documents isn’t as significant. However, 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
That is a programmer that cares about functionality! And I have Seen the same throughout all of the premium add-ons. They’re as small as possible get them. In reality, Font Awesome is probably the largest file contained. And that is not even his. With Font Awesome 5 arriving around the corner, we 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 aren’t using to guarantee they don’t load on your site. Since the co-developer of the perfmatters plugin which has a script manager built, I felt right at home with this. Everything ought to be designed this way.
If You are curious, I’m using the next add-ons on this site:
No Child Theme Needed
One of The best features of GeneratePress is I no longer have to use a Child motif . This makes my life so much easier. No more editing my functions.php or header.php files. I can literally update my GeneratePress motif this exact minute rather than lose one customization. The hooks add-on certainly can help make this possible. It permits you to add custom code/PHP everywhere throughout your WordPress website. Best WordPress Themes 2016
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On each Page/post you have a great deal of alternatives. You can alter the sidebar design and the footer widgets.
You Can easily swap a page involving the default to a full width page, in addition to disable components.
The WordPress customizer options is really where GeneratePress really shines! Remember, a lot of these choices are permitted by the superior add-ons. I can’t show you everything, otherwise, we would be here all day. However, let me show you few which really come in handy.
Another Plugin I highly recommend grabbing is the free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this is also made by the exact same developer as GeneratePress. It allows you a super simple way to incorporate responsive columns to any page or post. Characteristics include:
Desktop grid thickness
Tablet grid width
Mobile grid thickness
Insert Customized classes
Add custom inline designs
Equal height columns
This is An example under:
You might want to Also grab his incredible WP Display Posts plugin also. View my featured articles on the sidebar of this site? That’s using the WP Show Posts plugin. I have it set to display posts from a particular”featured” category. You can also get it show last modified/updated articles, recent articles, etc.. I’m using the free version and it works great.
The Sections add-on in the premium edition of GeneratePress allows you to do all kinds of things concerning design. Consider it like a page builder without the bloat. GeneratePress is certainly not only for blogs! I am in fact utilizing GeneratePress for our ecommerce site (perfmatters.io) which is running Easy Digital Downloads. Feel free to look it over. However, as you can see below, it looks nothing like a site.
For those Of you who are regular readers, you probably didn’t even notice that I changed the entire theme that powers woorkup.com. It only took me about an hour for GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop motif which I had spent annually customizing. Here is a comparison below.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My older MyThemeShop motif was pretty fast, but I invested a lot of time customizing it. In reality, I have gotten a lot of emails from you guys asking me to print all of my customizations. My advice now is, just get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
With the New GeneratePress theme I managed to attain faster speeds and 600 fewer lines of code! And keep in mind, I don’t have a kid theme. Each of the customizations were created using the awesome GP hooks and snippets plugin (both CSS and PHP).
Like the WordPress theme I’ve running on woorkup? You’re in luck. Tom asked if he could make a replica of woorkup to your brand new GeneratePress site library. I’m pleased to allow you to know that you can now put in my woorkup theme in your own GeneratePress website with only a click! It is known as the Marketer theme. Get started with a fantastic blog design instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved within my private website, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I was using a theme from Array Themes. It is a pretty basic minimum site, as I do not use it for much. As you can see it loaded pretty fast.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to duplicate the entire look 100% in GeneratePress in under an hour. And since you can view it loads faster! Amazing. I was able to eliminate a couple plugins that weren’t needed because of GP.
forgemedia.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
I also Moved over our organization site, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I was using a theme 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 WordPress Themes 2016
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to move everything over and get it looking just how I wanted it in under an hour. And as you can view it loads faster! Amazing. I was able to get rid of a total of four plugins and it dropped my total page weight 2x!
I can’t express my Excitement about locating GeneratePress and I am moving over all of my sites to it (which comprises several EDD e-commerce websites ). After I have my 9 websites all running in GP without any child themes, my entire 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 quicker.
And The best news isI finally have a thousand more choices to pick from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Great For…
GeneratePress Is the ideal alternative for performance-focused users who wish to be able to personalize and control precisely how their site looks.
You Can make GeneratePress perform pretty much anything. And since GeneratePress has a focus on functionality, the site that you build will have a fantastic base to make it load fast.
Since Of that, people who build 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 site.
But GeneratePress Might Not Be A Fantastic Fit If…
…you Need something which will immediately appear perfect out of the box.
For Example, if you realize you wish to produce a fashion blog, you may be happier picking out a niche theme that’s developed exclusively for trend bloggers.
While GeneratePress is becoming a great deal 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 would like it to, you’ll most likely will need to go in and customize matters. And though the substantial benefit of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, some users, especially casual users, do not like having to make those changes themselves.
GeneratePress Features Which Make It Unique
Here Are a few of the specific features that explain why GeneratePress is so common.
Lots Of Customization Options In The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Beyond Performance, another place where GeneratePress does well is its customization choices.
GeneratePress Utilizes the WordPress Customizer for customization, which is convenient because you will have the ability to see all of the changes that you make in real time.
The Free variant of GeneratePress provides you adequate options, but should you own GeneratePress Premium, you’ll have the ability to customize nearly everything about your website.
For Example, if you go into the Design area, you can configure comprehensive settings for yourown:
- Header — you can move your header around 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 design — like featured image dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — like the number of widgets to add
Likewise, That the Typography place lets you control the font for every single element on your site, including buttons:
And You also receive a thorough region to control the color of each and every element on your site.
All Whatsoever, GeneratePress will give you a lot more customization options in the WordPress Customizer than most other themes. This level of detail may be a bit overwhelming if you are a beginner. But as soon as you realize the way the settings come together, you’ll have complete control on how your site looks.
Optimized Performance And Fast Page Load Times
Across All of its features, GeneratePress consistently has a focus on excellent performance and tidy code. The entire theme is less than 30 kB, and it will be 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 badly coded topics can even exceed 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also has no code dependencies, which helps you avoid the render blocking error that Google Pagespeed Insights often cites.
Put That collectively, and you obtain a superfast-loading theme. How quickly? To give you an idea, I conducted a little test.
First, I put up an empty website using a haphazard popular WordPress.org motif (Envo Magazine). After testing its functionality with Pingdom, it:
- Had a performance grade of 77
- Loaded in 1.05 moments
- Had a page size of 243.9 kB
- Had 15 requests
That’s Not bad at all! However, GeneratePress can perform.
Next, I triggered GeneratePress on the same test site without altering anything else. Here is how GeneratePress failed:
- 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 asks, ~40% less
If You perform the exact same test with other topics, you are going to continue to see that GeneratePress is among the fastest-loading WordPress topics in existence. Best WordPress Themes 2016
Other Useful Premium Extensions, Plus A Modular Approach
Beyond Giving you more style controls in the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other useful features such as:
- Elements — a exceptional feature that allows you create customized hooks, page headers, or layout templates.
- Page Header — lets you create a exceptional page header onto a per-page basis.
- Sections — this is sort of like lightweight page construction. It lets you create separate”sections” onto a page, each with their own layout and column settings.
To Stay lightweight, GeneratePress also gives you a modular port where you can pick and choose what characteristics you want to trigger.
That Way, you do not need to slow your site down for a quality which you’ll never use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Website
In The last, you needed to build GeneratePress sites 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 Site Library feature for GeneratePress Premium users which allows you easily import any one of the 25+ pre-built demonstration websites .
You Can import them directly from your 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 Piece Of Content
With Most themes, each post and page 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 brand new Layout meta box for each and every page and post:
You Can utilize this meta box to:
- Change how many sidebars your website uses, or the sidebar orientation (like altering the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose how many footer widgets to utilize
- Disable certain components, such as your header, navigation menu, post featured image, article title, or footer
- Create a special”container” for your own page builder
Where These controls would be the most useful is if you are using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain components, you are able to create the correct baseline for your page builder design, which makes it easy to create custom content as needed. Best WordPress Themes 2016
GeneratePress Replies: Cheap And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Core GeneratePress motif can be obtained at no cost at WordPress.org.
That said, If you are serious about using GeneratePress, I feel you need to purchase the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that’s what produces the theme so elastic. The free version does not give you almost as numerous configurations in the WordPress Customizer. And you’ll also miss 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 websites . You’ll also get a 40% discount if you want to renew to keep on receiving support and upgrades following the first year (you can, obviously, continue using GeneratePress following the initial year without beating — you just won’t get any more updates).
When You believe the normal premium WordPress theme will usually cost around $60, GeneratePress offers a great price.
As I said, I don’t think GeneratePress is for everyone.
If You want a niche-specific motif, you can probably save time by buying a theme that satisfies your needs for your niche out of day one.
But If you’re ready to spend time changing settings, GeneratePress’ mode controls give you the flexibility to flip it into any sort of WordPress website. Or, you may even be able to find a starter website that fits your needs to save a little time.
Additionally, It is among the fastest-loading WordPress themes that you will find. So if you’re looking for the best performance possible, utilizing GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s foundation is a great choice.
If You blend it with fast-loading hosting, you shouldn’t have any difficulty making your website load in under one second. Best WordPress Themes 2016