Over the previous ten years, I’ve used a great deal of different WordPress themes and have been really disappointed. Up until recently, I had been using MyThemeShop, which was fairly good. However, I still had to do a lot of customization to make it do and work how I wanted 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’ve found in 10 years. I was dismissed and am moving all of my websites to GeneratePress. I will enter exactly why in my in-depth GeneratePress review under. And if you are wondering, yes I have tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X motif, Divi as well as several other lightweight and thicker multi-purpose themes. Betheme
GeneratePress is a free WordPress theme created by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I’ve actually seen it for many years in the WordPress repository. Most of you know that I’m fairly picky when it comes to web performance, and so I have a tendency to ignore everything in the repository. Typically because a lot of things on there is not that good, or not supported for long. However, in this case, this was a mistake. The theme currently has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ busy matches, with over 500 5-star evaluations. So clearly Tom is doing some thing right here.
I Actually installed 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 envisioning a theme should work. And I’ll go into that more below, but let us first look at some of the features. I will be covering the superior edition of the subject, since it’s worth . In fact, Tom, if you read this and are visiting Scottsdale, Arizona, coffees 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 adore GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks fantastic across all of the devices.
Schema built-in, for better results in SERPs.
Dramatic integration with the WordPress Customizer. I have not been a fan of this customizer in the past, but Tom does it correctly.
Compatible with popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Great browser support back to IE8.
It also works great with the favorite fast-growing Elementor page builder. If you want to dive into even more customizations, these really are a great combo. I’ve also read that people using Beaver Builder have experienced success.
Font awesome built in.
A lot of hooks and filters which make it good for developers.
Great active support from the developer. On average, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation is also unbelievable. Besides have good documentation on their site, the theme has existed long enough that what I Googled during the setup procedure was found within a few seconds in their own forum.
Going Deep Into GeneratePress
Now it’s Time to the fun part! I test a new theme right from the box without any customizations to just see how fast the foundation is. This tells me a lot of what I can expect by the time that I add everything to it. Running the inventory GeneratePress WordPress motif on Kinsta hosting clocked in at a whopping 265 ms load time. I was very impressed.
One Thing I was concerned about with GeneratePress was that the modular design was going to generate a lot of big files, but this is not the situation. You may tell that Tom actually worked hard on making sure every record packed in GeneratePress is as little as possible. With HTTP/2, the number of files isn’t as significant. However, the dimensions is! Take a peek at a few 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
That is a developer that cares about functionality! And I have Seen the same throughout each the premium add-ons. They are literally as small as you can possibly get them. In fact, Font Awesome is most likely the largest file included. And that is not even his. With Font Awesome 5 arriving round the cornerwe could anticipate this to secure smaller too.
The premium add-ons Are setup in what I’d call a modular layout. 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 that has a script supervisor built-in, I felt right at home for this. Everything should be made 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 theme. This makes my life much easier. No more editing my functions.php or header.php files. I will literally update my GeneratePress motif this very minute and not shed one customization. The hooks add-on certainly can help make it possible. It allows you to add custom code/PHP everywhere throughout your WordPress website. Betheme
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post you have a great deal of alternatives. You are able to 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 elements.
The WordPress customizer choices is where GeneratePress really shines! Bear in mind, a lot of these choices are permitted by the superior add-ons. I can not show you everything, otherwise, we’d be here all day. However, allow me to show you couple which really come in handy.
Another Plugin I highly recommend grabbing is the free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this is also created by precisely the same developer as GeneratePress. It allows you a super easy way to incorporate responsive columns to any page or post. Characteristics include:
Desktop grid width
Tablet grid thickness
Mobile grid width
Add custom classes
Insert custom inline styles
Equal height columns
This is An example below:
You might want to Also grab his amazing WP Show Posts plugin too. 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 specific”featured” category. You might also get it show last modified/updated articles, recent articles, etc.. I’m using the free version and it works terrific.
The Segments add-in in the premium edition of GeneratePress allows you to do all kinds of things concerning design. Think of it like a webpage builder without the bloat. GeneratePress is certainly not only for blogs! I am in reality using GeneratePress for our ecommerce website (perfmatters.io) which is running Easy Digital Downloads. Don’t hesitate to check it out. But as you can see below, it looks nothing like a blog.
For those Of you who are regular readers, you probably did not even notice that I changed the whole motif that forces woorkup.com. It just took me about an hour for GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop theme which I had spent a year customizing. Here is a comparison below.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My older MyThemeShop theme was pretty fast, but I spent a lot of time scrutinizing it. In reality, I’ve gotten a great deal of emails from you guys asking me to publish all my customizations. My advice today is, simply get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
Together with the New GeneratePress motif I was able to achieve faster speeds and 600 fewer lines of code! And keep in mind, 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 are in luck. Tom asked if he can make a replica of woorkup for the new GeneratePress site library. I’m happy to let you know that now you can install my woorkup theme in your own GeneratePress site with only a single click! It’s called the Marketer theme. Get started with a fantastic blog design immediately.
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 is a fairly basic minimum site, since I do not use it for much. Since you can see it already loaded pretty quickly.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to replicate the whole look 100% in GeneratePress in under an hour. And since you can see it loads faster! Amazing. I was able to get rid of a few plugins that 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 was using a motif from Array Themes. It is a pretty basic minimal website, as we simply use it for our LLC. As you can see it already loaded pretty fast. Betheme
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been 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 faster! Amazing. I was able to get rid of a total of four plugins and it dropped my whole page weight 2x!
I can not express my Excitement about finding GeneratePress and I’m moving over all my sites for this (which includes some EDD e-commerce websites ). Once I’ve got my 9 sites all running in GP with no child topics, my entire life is going to be a breeze! The programmer has revived my faith in multi-purpose subjects , which when done the right way, can actually perform quicker.
And The best thing is, I now have a billion more choices to choose from than I did before.
What GeneratePress Is Good For…
GeneratePress Is the ideal alternative for performance-focused users who want to have the ability to personalize and control exactly 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 great base to make it load quickly.
Because Of that, those who build WordPress websites 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 Fantastic Combination If…
…you Want something which will immediately appear perfect out of the box.
For Example, if you know you wish to create a style blog, you might be happier choosing a niche theme that is developed exclusively for trend bloggers.
While GeneratePress has gotten a great deal simpler to use, thanks to its pre-built Website Library, GeneratePress still looks very barebones if you first install it.
So To create GeneratePress look how you want it to, you will almost certainly will need to go in and personalize matters. And though the significant advantage of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, many 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 characteristics that explain why GeneratePress is indeed common.
Lots Of Customization Options In The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Past Functionality, another area where GeneratePress does nicely is its customization choices.
GeneratePress Utilizes the WordPress Customizer for customization, which is convenient as you will have the ability to see all of the changes that you make in real time.
The Free version of GeneratePress gives you adequate possibilities, but if you own GeneratePress Premium, you will have the ability to customize nearly everything about your website.
For Example, if you go in the Layout area, you can configure detailed settings for yourown:
- Header — you can move your header round and alter its styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, such as sticky menus
- Sidebar design — you can use one or two sidebars
- Blog post design — like featured image dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — like how many widgets to include
Likewise, The Typography area enables you to control the font for every single element on your website, including buttons:
And You also receive a thorough area to control the colour of each and every element on your website.
All Whatsoever, GeneratePress will give you a lot more customization choices in the WordPress Customizer compared to most other topics. This amount of detail might be a bit overwhelming if you’re a beginner. But once you realize 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 of its attributes, 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 topics are still 200+ kB. And some badly coded themes can even exceed 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also has no code dependencies, which will help you avoid the render blocking error that Google Pagespeed Insights often cites.
Place That together, and you get a superfast-loading theme. How quickly? To give you an idea, I ran a small test.
First, I put up a vacant site 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 in any way! But GeneratePress can perform.
Next, I activated GeneratePress on the exact same test website without changing anything else. Here’s how GeneratePress failed:
- Had a performance tier 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 perform the exact same test with different topics, you’ll continue to see that GeneratePress is among those fastest-loading WordPress topics in life. Betheme
Other Useful Premium Extensions, Plus Much Modular Approach
Beyond Giving you more style controls from the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other helpful features like:
- 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 building. It lets you create separate”sections” onto a webpage, each with their own design and column settings.
To Remain lightweight, GeneratePress also gives you a modular port where you can pick and choose exactly which characteristics you want to activate.
That Way, you do not need to slow down your site for a feature which you’re never going to use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Site
In The past, you had to construct GeneratePress sites from a blank canvas no matter what, which made the motif difficult for casual users to install.
Earlier In 2018, though, the programmer added a new Website Library feature for GeneratePress Premium users that lets you easily import any one of the 25+ pre-built demonstration websites .
You Can import them right from your WordPress dashboard.
Yes this Website still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click a few buttons to import a presentation site.
Page-Level Settings Give You Detailed Control Over Every Bit Of Content
With Most themes, each page and post will use the very same settings for the most part. You might have some custom templates or formats — however you don’t have very much control past that.
GeneratePress Changes that by giving you a brand new Layout meta box for each and every post and page:
You Can use this meta box to:
- Change how many sidebars your site uses, or the sidebar orientation (such as altering the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose how many footer widgets to utilize
- Disable certain elements, such as your header, navigation menu, post featured picture, post title, or footer
- Create a special”container” for your page builder
Where These controls would be the most useful is if you are using a WordPress page builder.
By Disabling certain elements, you’re able to create the correct baseline for your page builder design, making it effortless to create custom content as needed. Betheme
GeneratePress Pricing: Affordable And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Heart GeneratePress theme is available at no cost at WordPress.org.
Nevertheless, If you’re seriously interested in using 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 nearly as many configurations from the WordPress Customizer. And you’ll also lose out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium is also still fairly affordable. It costs just $39.95, which gives you use on unlimited sites. 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 following the initial year without beating — you just won’t receive any more upgrades ).
When You believe that the normal premium WordPress theme will usually cost around $60, GeneratePress offers a great value.
As I said, I don’t believe GeneratePress is for everybody.
If You desire a niche-specific motif, you can probably save time by purchasing a theme that fits your needs for your market from day one.
However, If you’re ready to spend some time changing settings, GeneratePress’ style controls give you the flexibility to flip it into any type of WordPress site. Or, you may even be able to locate a starter site that fits your needs to save a little time.
Additionally, It’s one of the fastest-loading WordPress themes that you will find. So if you’re looking for 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 shouldn’t have any problem making your website load in under one minute. Betheme