Background Best WordPress Themes November 2017
Over the past ten years, I have used a great deal of different WordPress topics and have been really disappointed. Up until recently, I had been using MyThemeShop, which was fairly excellent. However, I had to do a lot of customization to allow it to do and operate how I wanted it to. A few weeks ago I decided to provide GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it’s undoubtedly the best WordPress theme I’ve found in a decade . I was dismissed and am moving all of my websites to GeneratePress. I’ll enter precisely why in my comprehensive GeneratePress review below. And if you are wondering, yes I have tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X theme, Divi in addition to many other lightweight and thicker multicolored themes. Best WordPress Themes November 2017
GeneratePress is a totally free WordPress theme made by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I’ve really seen it for many years from the WordPress repository. Most of you realize that I’m fairly picky when it comes to web performance, so I have a tendency to dismiss everything in the repository. Typically because a lot of things on there isn’t that good, or not encouraged for long. Nonetheless, in this case, that was a mistake. The motif currently has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ active installs, with over 500 5-star evaluations. So clearly Tom is doing some thing right here.
I Actually set up the free version of the theme and in a matter of 15 minutes bought the premium version. I could tell right off the bat, the developer was thinking exactly how I was imagining a theme should get the job done. And I’ll go into that more below, but let us first look at some of the features. I will be covering the premium edition of the subject, because it’s worth . Actually, Tom, if you ever read this and are seeing Scottsdale, Arizona, coffees on me.
Super lightweight and quick. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable things you do not need running. This is one of the greatest reasons I love GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks fantastic across all devices.
Schema built-in, for better results in SERPs.
Impressive integration with 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 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 really are a terrific combo. I’ve also read that individuals using Beaver Builder have had success.
Font wonderful built in.
Tons of hooks and filters which make it great for developers.
Great active service from the programmer. On average, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation is also unbelievable. Besides have great documentation on their website, the subject has existed long enough that everything I Googled throughout the setup procedure was found within a few seconds in their own forum.
Going Deep Into GeneratePress
Now it’s Time for the fun part! I test a new theme right out of the box without any customizations to see how fast the foundation is. This tells me a great deal of what I can expect by the time I add everything to it. Running the stock GeneratePress WordPress motif 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 making sure that every file packed in GeneratePress is as small as possible. With HTTP/2, the amount of documents isn’t as significant. However, the size is! Have a look at some 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 developer that cares about performance! And I have Seen exactly the same during all of the premium add-ons. They’re literally as small as you can possibly get them. In fact, Font Awesome is most likely the biggest file included. And that isn’t even his. Together with Font Awesome 5 arriving around the corner, we could expect this to get smaller too.
The premium add-ons Are installation in what I would call a modular design. You can activate/deactivate whatever you aren’t using to ensure they don’t load on your site. As the co-developer of the perfmatters plugin which has a script manager built-in, I felt at home with this. Everything ought to be made this way.
If You are curious, I am using the following add-ons on this site:
No Child Theme Needed
One of The best characteristics of GeneratePress is I no more need to use a young child motif . This makes my life much easier. No longer editing my functions.php or header.php files. I will literally update my GeneratePress theme this exact moment and not shed 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 WordPress Themes November 2017
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 option to a full width page, as well as disable elements.
The WordPress customizer choices is really where GeneratePress really shines! Remember, lots of these options are enabled from the premium add-ons. I can not show you everything, otherwise, we’d be here daily. But let me show you few which actually come in handy.
Another Plugin I highly suggest grabbing is your free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this can be made by precisely the exact same developer as GeneratePress. It enables you a super simple way to add responsive columns to any page or article. Features include:
Desktop grid thickness
Tablet grid thickness
Mobile grid width
Insert Customized classes
Add custom inline designs
Equal height columns
Here is An example below:
You May Want to Also grab his amazing WP Display Posts plugin also. See my featured posts on the sidebar of this website? That’s using the WP Display Posts plugin. I have it set to show 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 terrific.
The Segments add-in in the premium version of GeneratePress lets you do all sorts of things in terms of design. Consider it like a webpage builder with no bloat. GeneratePress is definitely not just for blogs! I am in fact utilizing GeneratePress for our ecommerce website (perfmatters.io) which is operating Easy Digital Downloads. Don’t hesitate to look it over. However, as you can see below, it looks nothing like a site.
For those Of those that are regular readers, you probably did not even notice that I changed the whole theme that forces 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’s a comparison below.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My old MyThemeShop motif was pretty fast, but I spent a lot of time customizing it. In reality, I have gotten a lot of emails from you guys asking me to print all my customizations. My advice now is, just get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
With the New GeneratePress motif I managed to achieve faster speeds and 600 fewer lines of code! And keep in mind, I do not have a kid motif. Each of the customizations were created with the wonderful GP hooks and snippets plugin (both CSS and PHP).
Like the WordPress theme I have running on woorkup? You are in luck. Tom asked if he can make a replica of woorkup to your new GeneratePress site library. I’m pleased to let you know that you can now install my woorkup theme on your GeneratePress site with only a click! It’s known as the Marketer theme. Get started using a great blog design instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
I also Moved over my private website, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a motif from Array Themes. It is a fairly basic minimum site, since I don’t use it for much. Since you can see it loaded pretty quickly.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to replicate the entire appearance 100% in GeneratePress in under one hour. And since you can view it loads faster! Amazing. I was able to eliminate a few 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 had been using a motif from Array Themes. It is a pretty basic minimum site, as we just use it to our LLC. Since you can see it loaded pretty fast. Best WordPress Themes November 2017
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to again move everything over and get it looking just 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 total page burden 2x!
I can’t express my Excitement about finding GeneratePress and I am moving over all my sites for this (which comprises several EDD e-commerce sites). Once I’ve got my 9 websites all running in GP without any child topics, my life is going to be a breeze! The developer has revived my faith in multi-purpose themes, which when done the right way, can actually perform faster.
And The best news is, I finally have a thousand more options to choose from than I did before.
What GeneratePress Is Great For…
GeneratePress Is the perfect alternative for performance-focused users that wish to be able to personalize and control exactly how their site appears.
You Can make GeneratePress perform pretty much anything. And because GeneratePress has a focus on functionality, the website that you build will have a fantastic foundation to make it load quickly.
Because Of that, people who build WordPress websites for a living love GeneratePress. They will typically pair it with a WordPress page builder and use it for literally any type of website.
However GeneratePress Might Not Be A Good Fit If…
…you Need something which will immediately appear perfect out of the box.
For Example, if you realize you want to produce a fashion blog, you might be happier choosing a niche theme that is developed exclusively for trend bloggers.
While GeneratePress is becoming a great deal simpler to use, thanks to its pre-built Website Library, GeneratePress still seems very barebones if you first install it.
So To create GeneratePress look how you would like it to, you’ll almost certainly need to go in and customize things. And while the substantial advantage of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, some users, especially casual users, do not like having to make those changes .
GeneratePress Features Which Make It Unique
Here Are a few of the specific characteristics that clarify why GeneratePress is indeed popular.
Lots Of Customization Options In The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Past Functionality, another area where GeneratePress does well is its customization choices.
GeneratePress Uses the WordPress Customizer for customization, and this 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 adequate options, but should you have GeneratePress Premium, you’ll be able to customize nearly everything about your website.
For Example, if you go in the Layout 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, such as sticky menus
- Sidebar design — you can utilize one or two sidebars
- Blog post design — like featured image dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — just like how many widgets to add
Likewise, That the Typography place lets you control the font to get each and every element on your website, including buttons:
And You also receive a detailed region to control the colour of each and every element on your site.
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’re a beginner. But as soon as you understand how the settings come together, you will have complete control over how your website looks.
Optimized Performance And Quick Page Load Times
Around All its features, GeneratePress consistently includes a focus on exceptional performance and clean code. The entire theme is less than 30 kB, and it is about as little as you’ll ever find for a WordPress theme. Even most other optimized WordPress themes are still 200+ kB. And a few poorly coded themes can even surpass 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also does not have any code dependencies, which helps you avoid the render obstructing error that Google Pagespeed Insights often cites.
Place That collectively, and you get a superfast-loading theme. How quickly? To give you an idea, I ran a little test.
First, I set up an empty website utilizing a haphazard popular WordPress.org theme (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 requests
That’s Not bad at all! But GeneratePress can perform.
Next, I activated GeneratePress on the same test website without altering anything else. Here is how GeneratePress did:
- Had a performance grade of 87, 10 points better
- Loaded in 666 ms, ~37% quicker
- Had a page size of 26.8 kB, ~90% smaller
- Had 9 asks, ~40% fewer
If You do that same test with different topics, you are going to continue to see that GeneratePress is one of those fastest-loading WordPress themes in existence. Best WordPress Themes November 2017
Other Helpful Premium Extensions, Plus Much Modular Approach
Past Giving you more style controls in the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other helpful features such as:
- Elements — a exceptional feature that 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 lets you create different”sections” on a webpage, each with their own layout and column settings.
To Remain lightweight, GeneratePress also gives you a modular interface where you can pick and choose what characteristics you would like to trigger.
That Way, you do not have 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 construct GeneratePress sites from a blank canvas regardless of what, which made the motif difficult for casual users to install.
Earlier In 2018, however, the programmer added a fresh Website Library attribute for GeneratePress Premium users which allows 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 couple buttons to import a demo site.
Page-Level Settings Provide 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 — but you do not have very much control beyond that.
GeneratePress Changes that by giving you a brand new Design 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 (such as changing the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose the number of footer widgets to utilize
- Disable certain elements, such as your header, navigation menu, article featured picture, article title, or footer
- Produce a special”container” for your own page builder
Where These controls would be the most helpful is if you’re using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain components, you’re in a position to create the correct baseline for your own page builder layout, which makes it effortless to create custom content as needed. Best WordPress Themes November 2017
GeneratePress Pricing: Affordable And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Core GeneratePress theme can be obtained at no cost at WordPress.org.
That said, If you’re serious about utilizing GeneratePress, I feel you should purchase the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that is what produces the theme so flexible. The free version does not give you almost as many configurations from the WordPress Customizer. And you will also lose out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium can be still fairly reasonably priced. It costs just $39.95, which provides you use on unlimited websites . You will also get a 40% discount if you want to renew to keep on receiving support and upgrades after the first year (you can, obviously, continue using GeneratePress after the first year without beating — you won’t get any more upgrades ).
When You consider the normal premium WordPress theme will often cost around $60, GeneratePress provides a great value.
As I mentioned, I don’t think GeneratePress is for everybody.
If You desire a niche-specific theme, you can probably save time by buying a theme that satisfies your requirements for your market out of day one.
But If you are willing to spend some time altering settings, GeneratePress’ style controls give you the flexibility to turn it into any sort of WordPress website. Or, you might even be able to find a starter site that fulfills your needs to save a little time.
Additionally, It is among those fastest-loading WordPress themes you will locate. Therefore, if you’re looking for the best performance possible, using GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s base is a great choice.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, you shouldn’t have any problem making your website load in under one second. Best WordPress Themes November 2017