Introduction Best WordPress Themes For User Generated Content
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 perform a lot of customization to allow it to perform and operate the way I wanted it to. A few of weeks ago I decided to provide GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it is undoubtedly the best WordPress theme I have found in 10 years. I had been dismissed and am moving all of my sites to GeneratePress. I’ll enter precisely why in my in-depth GeneratePress review under. And if you’re wondering, yes I have tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X theme, Divi as well as several other lightweight and thicker multi-purpose themes. Best WordPress Themes For User Generated Content
GeneratePress is a totally free WordPress theme created by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I’ve actually seen it for years in the WordPress repository. Most of you realize that I am fairly picky when it comes to web performance, so I have a tendency to ignore everything from the repository. Typically because a lot of things on there isn’t that good, or not supported for long. However, in this circumstance, that was a mistake. The motif currently 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 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 get the job done. And I will go into that more below, but let’s first look at some of the qualities. I will be covering the superior version of the theme, because it’s worth . In fact, Tom, if you ever read this and are visiting Scottsdale, Arizona, java on me.
Super lightweight and fast. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable things you don’t need running. This is one of the biggest reasons I adore GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks great across all devices.
Schema built-in, for better results in SERPs.
Impressive integration using all the WordPress Customizer. I have not been a fan of this customizer in the past, but Tom does it correctly.
Compatible with all popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Great browser service back to IE8.
It also works great with all the popular fast-growing Elementor page builder. If you would like to dive into even more customizations, these really are a great combo. I have also read that individuals using Beaver Builder have experienced success.
Font awesome built in.
A lot of filters and hooks which make it good for developers.
Great active service from the programmer. On average, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation is also incredible. Besides have good documentation on their website, the subject has existed long enough that what I Googled during the setup procedure was found within a couple of seconds in their own 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 just see how fast the foundation is. This tells me a lot of what I could expect by the time that I add everything to it. Running the inventory GeneratePress WordPress theme on Kinsta hosting clocked in at a whopping 265 ms loading time. I was very impressed.
One Thing I was worried about with GeneratePress was that the modular layout was going to produce a whole lot of big files, but that isn’t the situation. You can tell that Tom literally worked hard on ensuring that every file loaded in GeneratePress is as little as possible. Together with HTTP/2, the amount of files isn’t as significant. However, the size 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
This is a developer that cares about performance! And I have Seen exactly the same throughout all the premium add-ons. They’re as small as possible get them. In fact, Font Awesome is probably the largest file contained. And that is not even his. With Font Awesome 5 arriving around the cornerwe could expect that to secure smaller also.
The premium add-ons Are setup in what I would call a modular design. You can activate/deactivate anything you aren’t using to ensure they do not load on your site. Since the co-developer of this perfmatters plugin which has a script supervisor built, I felt at home with this. Everything ought to 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 characteristics of GeneratePress is I no more need to use a Child motif . This makes my life much simpler. No longer editing my functions.php or header.php documents. I will literally upgrade my GeneratePress theme this exact moment and not lose one customization. The hooks add-on certainly can help make this possible. It permits you to incorporate custom code/PHP everywhere throughout your WordPress site. Best WordPress Themes For User Generated Content
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On each Page/post that you have a lot of alternatives. You are able to change the sidebar layout and the footer widgets.
You Can quickly swap a page between the default to a complete width page, in addition to disable elements.
The WordPress customizer options is really where GeneratePress really shines! Remember, a lot of these options are permitted from the superior add-ons. I can not 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 suggest grabbing is the free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this is also made by precisely the same programmer as GeneratePress. It enables you a super easy way to add responsive columns into any page or article. Characteristics include:
Desktop grid thickness
Tablet grid width
Mobile grid width
Add custom classes
Add custom inline styles
Equal height columns
This is An example under:
You May Want to Also grab his amazing WP Show Posts plugin too. View 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 have it show past modified/updated articles, recent posts, etc.. I am using the free version and it works great.
The Segments add-in in the premium edition of GeneratePress allows you to perform all kinds of things in terms of design. Think of it like a webpage builder without the bloat. GeneratePress is definitely not only for blogs! I’m in fact using GeneratePress for our ecommerce site (perfmatters.io) which is running Easy Digital Downloads. Feel free to check it out. However, as you can see below, it looks nothing like a blog.
For all 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 for GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop motif that I had spent annually customizing. Here is a comparison below.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My old MyThemeShop motif was already pretty quickly, but I spent a lot of time customizing it. In fact, I’ve gotten a great deal of emails from you guys asking me to print all my customizations. My advice today 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 kid motif. Each of 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’re in luck. Tom asked if he could make a copy of woorkup for the new GeneratePress blog library. I am happy to allow you to know that now you can install my woorkup theme on your own GeneratePress website with only a click! It’s known as the Marketer motif. Get started with a great blog layout instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved over my private site, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I was using a theme from Array Themes. It’s a pretty basic minimal 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 replicate 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 because of 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 theme from Array Themes. It is a fairly basic minimum website, as we just use it for our LLC. As you can see it loaded pretty quickly. Best WordPress Themes For User Generated Content
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to move everything over and get it looking exactly how I wanted it in under one hour. And since you can see it loads faster! Amazing. I managed to eliminate a total of four plugins and it dropped my whole page weight 2x!
I can’t express my Excitement about finding GeneratePress and I am moving over all my sites for this (which includes some EDD e-commerce sites). After I have my 9 sites all running in GP with no child themes, my life is going to be a breeze! The developer has restored my faith in multi-purpose subjects , which when done the correct way, can actually perform quicker.
And The best news is, I now have a thousand more options to pick from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Great For…
GeneratePress Is the ideal option for performance-focused users who want to be able to customize and control exactly 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 quickly.
Because Of that, those who build WordPress sites for a living love GeneratePress. They will typically pair it with a WordPress site builder and use it for literally any kind of site.
But GeneratePress Might Not Be A Good Combination If…
…you Want something which will instantly appear perfect out of the box.
For Example, if you know you wish to produce a fashion blog, you might be happier choosing a market theme that’s developed exclusively for trend bloggers.
Even though GeneratePress is becoming 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 personalize matters. And though the substantial 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 clarify why GeneratePress is so popular.
Plenty Of Customization Options From The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Beyond Functionality, another place where GeneratePress does well is its customization options.
GeneratePress Utilizes the WordPress Customizer for customization, and this is convenient because you will be able to see all of the changes that you make in real time.
The Free variant of GeneratePress gives you decent possibilities, but should you have GeneratePress Premium, you’ll be able to customize pretty much all about your website.
For Example, if you go into the Design region, you can configure detailed settings to your:
- Header — you can move your header round and alter its own styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, such as sticky menus
- Sidebar design — you can use one or two sidebars
- Blog post layout — like featured image size, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — just like how many widgets to add
Likewise, That the Typography place enables you to control the font for each and every element on your website, including buttons:
And You also receive a thorough area to control the color of each and every element on your website.
All In all, GeneratePress will give you a lot more customization choices from the WordPress Customizer compared to most other themes. This amount of detail might be a bit overwhelming if you are a beginner. But as soon as you understand the way the settings come together, you will have full control on how your site looks.
Optimized Performance And Quick Page Load Times
Around All its features, GeneratePress consistently includes a focus on excellent performance and clean code. The whole theme is less than 30 kB, and it is about as small as you are ever going to find for a WordPress theme. Even most other optimized WordPress themes are still 200+ kB. And some poorly coded themes can even exceed 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also has no code dependencies, which will help you avoid the leave obstructing error that Google Pagespeed Insights often cites.
Put That together, and you get a superfast-loading motif. How quickly? To give you a sense, I conducted a little test.
First, I set up an empty website utilizing a random popular WordPress.org motif (Envo Magazine). After analyzing 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’s Not bad at all! But GeneratePress can do better.
Next, I activated GeneratePress on exactly the exact same test site without changing anything else. Here is how GeneratePress failed:
- Had a performance grade 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 do that same test with other topics, you are going to continue to see that GeneratePress is one of the fastest-loading WordPress topics in life. Best WordPress Themes For User Generated Content
Other Helpful Premium Extensions, Plus Much Modular Approach
Past Giving you more design controls in the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other useful features like:
- Elements — a exceptional feature that allows you create customized hooks, page headers, or layout templates.
- Page Header — allows you create a unique page header onto a per-page basis.
- Sections — this is kind of like lightweight page construction. It lets you create different”sections” onto a webpage, each with their own design and column preferences.
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 do not need 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 last, you had to construct GeneratePress websites from a blank canvas regardless of what, which left the theme difficult for casual users to set up.
Earlier In 2018, though, the developer added a fresh Website Library attribute for GeneratePress Premium users which lets you easily import any one of those 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 a couple buttons to import a demo site.
Page-Level Settings Give You Comprehensive Control Over Each Piece Of Content
With Most topics, every page and post will use the very same configurations for the most part. You may have some custom formats or templates — however you don’t have very much control beyond that.
GeneratePress Changes that by providing you a new Layout meta box for every single 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 how many footer widgets to use
- Disable certain components, such as your header, navigation menu, article featured picture, post title, or footer
- Produce a special”container” for your page builder
Where These controls are the most useful is if you’re using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain elements, you are able to create the correct baseline for your page builder layout, which makes it effortless to create custom articles as needed. Best WordPress Themes For User Generated Content
GeneratePress Pricing: Affordable And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Heart GeneratePress motif can be obtained for free at WordPress.org.
That said, If you’re seriously interested in using GeneratePress, I feel you need to purchase the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that’s what makes the theme so elastic. The free version does not give you nearly as many configurations in the WordPress Customizer. And you will also miss out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium is also still quite reasonably priced. It costs just $39.95, which provides you use on infinite websites . You will also get a 40% discount if you would like to renew to keep on receiving support and upgrades following the initial year (you can, of course, continue using GeneratePress following the initial year without renewing — you just 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 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 settings, GeneratePress’ mode controls give you the flexibility to turn it into any sort of WordPress website. Or, you might even be able to locate a starter site that fulfills your needs to save some time.
Additionally, It is one of those fastest-loading WordPress themes you will find. Therefore, 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, so you shouldn’t have any problem making your site load in under one second. Best WordPress Themes For User Generated Content