Intro Lightweight Theme
Over the past 10 decades, I’ve used a great deal of different WordPress themes and have been very disappointed. Up till recently, I was utilizing MyThemeShop, which was pretty excellent. However, I still had to do a lot of customization to allow it to perform and operate how I needed it to. A few weeks ago I decided to provide GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it’s undoubtedly the finest WordPress theme I’ve discovered in 10 years. I was blown away and am moving all of my sites to GeneratePress. I’ll enter exactly why in my in-depth GeneratePress review under. And if you are wondering, yes I have attempted Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X theme, Divi as well as several other lightweight and thicker multicolored themes. Lightweight Theme
GeneratePress is a totally free WordPress theme made by Tom Usborne, a developer from Canada. I’ve really seen it for many years in the WordPress repository. Most of you know that I am pretty picky when it comes to web performance, so I tend to ignore everything in the repository. Typically because a great deal of things on there is not that good, or not encouraged for long. However, in this circumstance, that was a mistake. The motif currently has more than half a million downloads, 80,000+ busy installs, 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 precisely how I was envisioning a theme should work. And I will go into that more below, but let us first look at a number of the qualities. I will be covering the superior version of the subject, because it’s worth very penny. Actually, Tom, if you ever read this and so are seeing Scottsdale, Arizona, java on me.
Super lightweight and fast. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable things you don’t want running. This is one of the biggest reasons I love GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks fantastic across all devices.
Schema built-in, for greater results in SERPs.
Impressive integration with all the WordPress Customizer. I haven’t been a fan 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.
It also works great with the popular fast-growing Elementor page builder. If you want to dive into even more customizations, these are a terrific combo. I’ve also read that people using Beaver Builder have had success.
Font wonderful built-in.
Tons of filters and hooks which make it good for programmers.
Excellent active service from the programmer. On average, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation is also unbelievable. Besides have good documentation on their website, the theme has been around long enough that everything I Googled during the setup procedure was found inside a few seconds from their forum.
Diving Into GeneratePress
Now it is Time for the fun part! I always test a new theme right out of the box with no customizations to see how quickly the base 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 load time. I was quite 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 this is not the situation. You may tell that Tom actually worked hard on making sure every record loaded in GeneratePress is as little as possible. Together with HTTP/2, the number of files isn’t as significant. But the dimensions is! Take a peek at a few 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 developer that cares about performance! And I’ve Seen exactly the same throughout each the premium add-ons. They’re as small as possible get them. In reality, Font Awesome is probably the biggest file included. And that is not even his. With Font Awesome 5 arriving round the corner, we could anticipate that to secure smaller too.
The premium add-ons Are installation in what I would call a modular layout. It is possible to activate/deactivate anything you are not using to ensure they do not load on your website. Since the co-developer of this perfmatters plugin that has a script supervisor built, I felt at home for this. Everything should be made this way.
If You’re interested, I am using the next add-ons on this site:
No Child Theme Needed
One of The best features of GeneratePress is I no more need to use a young child motif . This makes my life so much easier. No longer editing my functions.php or header.php files. I can literally update my GeneratePress motif this very minute rather than shed one customization. The hooks add-on certainly can help make it possible. It permits you to incorporate custom code/PHP anywhere throughout your WordPress site. Lightweight Theme
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post you have a lot of alternatives. You can alter the sidebar design and the footer widgets.
You Can easily swap a page involving the default option to a full width page, as well as disable elements.
The WordPress customizer options is where GeneratePress really shines! Bear in mind, a lot of these options are enabled from the premium add-ons. I can’t show you everything, otherwise, we would be here daily. But allow me to show you couple which actually come in handy.
Another Plugin I highly recommend grabbing is the free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this can be made by the same developer as GeneratePress. It allows you a super easy way to add responsive columns into any page or article. Characteristics include:
Desktop grid width
Tablet grid width
Mobile grid thickness
Insert custom classes
Insert custom inline designs
Equal height columns
This is An example below:
You May Want to Also grab his amazing WP Show Posts plugin too. View my featured posts on the sidebar of this site? That’s using the WP Display Posts plugin. I have it set to show posts from a particular”featured” category. You might also get it show last modified/updated posts, recent posts, etc.. I’m using the free version and it works terrific.
The Segments add-in in the premium version of GeneratePress allows you to perform all sorts of things in terms of design. Think of it like a page builder without the bloat. GeneratePress is definitely not only for blogs! I’m in fact using GeneratePress for our ecommerce website (perfmatters.io) that is operating Easy Digital Downloads. Don’t hesitate to check it out. But as you can see below, it looks like a site.
For all those Of those that are regular readers, you likely didn’t even notice I changed the entire theme that forces woorkup.com. It only took me about an hour to get GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop motif that I had spent a year customizing. Here is a comparison under.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My old MyThemeShop motif was already pretty quickly, but I spent a lot of time scrutinizing it. In fact, I’ve gotten a lot of emails from you guys asking me to print all of my customizations. My advice today is, just get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
Together 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 child theme. All the customizations were created with the awesome GP hooks and snippets plugin (both CSS and PHP).
Like the WordPress theme I’ve working on woorkup? You are in luck. Tom asked if he can make a copy of woorkup to your new GeneratePress site library. I’m pleased to let you know that now you can install my woorkup theme in your GeneratePress website with just a click! It’s called the Marketer motif. Get started using a great blog design 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 fairly basic minimum website, as I do not use it to get much. Since you can see it already loaded pretty quickly.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to duplicate the entire look 100 percent in GeneratePress in under one hour. And since you can see it loads faster! Amazing. I was able to eliminate a few plugins that weren’t needed due to GP.
forgemedia.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
I also Moved over our business website, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a theme from Array Themes. It is a pretty basic minimum site, as we just use it to our LLC. As you can see it already loaded pretty quickly. Lightweight Theme
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to again move everything over and get it looking just how I needed it in under an hour. And as you can see it loads even faster! Amazing. I managed to get rid of a total of four plugins and it dropped my whole page burden 2x!
I can not express my Excitement about locating 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 entire life is going to be a breeze! The developer has revived my faith in multi-purpose subjects , which when done the correct way, can actually perform quicker.
And The best news is, I finally have a billion more options to choose from than I did before.
What GeneratePress Is Good For…
GeneratePress Is the ideal option for performance-focused users who wish to have the ability to customize and control precisely how their site looks.
You Can make GeneratePress perform pretty much anything. And since GeneratePress has a focus on functionality, the website that you build will have a great base to make it load quickly.
Since Of that, people who build WordPress websites for a living love GeneratePress. They’ll normally pair it with a WordPress site builder and use it for literally any kind of site.
However GeneratePress Might Not Be A Good Fit If…
…you Want something which will immediately appear perfect from the box.
For Example, if you know you wish to produce a style blog, you might be happier picking out a market theme that’s developed exclusively for fashion bloggers.
While GeneratePress has gotten 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 want it to, you’ll most likely need to go in and personalize things. And while the substantial benefit of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, many users, especially casual users, do not like having to make those changes themselves.
GeneratePress Features That Make It Unique
Here Are a few of the particular features that explain why GeneratePress is so popular.
Plenty Of Customization Options From The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Past Performance, another place where GeneratePress does well is its customization choices.
GeneratePress Uses the WordPress Customizer for customization, which can be convenient as 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 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 area, you can configure detailed settings to your:
- Header — you can move your header around 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 layout — such as featured picture dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — like how many widgets to include
Likewise, The Typography area lets you control the font to get each and every element on your website, including buttons:
And You also get a thorough area to control the colour of every single element on your website.
All In all, GeneratePress will provide you much more customization choices from the WordPress Customizer compared to most other topics. This level of detail might be a little overwhelming if you’re a newcomer. But once you realize the way the preferences come together, you will have full control on how your website looks.
Optimized Performance And Fast Page Load Times
Across All its features, GeneratePress consistently has a focus on exceptional performance and tidy code. The entire motif 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 badly coded topics 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 fast? To give you an idea, I conducted a little test.
First, I set up an empty site 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 seconds
- Had a page size of 243.9 kB
- Had 15 asks
That is Not bad in any way! But GeneratePress can perform.
Next, I triggered GeneratePress on the exact same test website without changing anything else. Here’s how GeneratePress did:
- Had a performance tier 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 do the exact same test with different topics, you are going to continue to see that GeneratePress is among the fastest-loading WordPress topics in life. Lightweight Theme
Other Useful Premium Extensions, Plus A Modular Approach
Past Giving you more design controls in the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium comes with a lot of other useful features like:
- Elements — a unique 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 — that is kind of like lightweight page building. 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 port where you could select and choose what features you want to trigger.
That Way, you do not need to slow your site down for a feature that you’re never going to use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Website
In The past, you needed to build GeneratePress websites from a blank canvas regardless of what, which made the motif difficult for casual users to set up.
Earlier In 2018, though, the developer added a fresh Website Library attribute for GeneratePress Premium users which allows you easily import any one of those 25+ pre-built demo sites.
You Can import them directly from the WordPress dashboard.
Yes this Website still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click on a couple buttons to import a demo site.
Page-Level Settings Give You Detailed Control Over Each Piece Of Content
With Most themes, every page and post will use the same settings for the most part. You may have some custom templates or formats — but you don’t have very much control beyond that.
GeneratePress Changes that by providing you a brand new Layout meta name box for every single page and post:
You Can utilize this meta box to:
- Change the number of sidebars your website 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, article featured image, article title, or footer
- Create a special”container” for your page builder
Where These controls would be the most useful is if you’re using a WordPress page builder.
By Disabling certain components, you are in a position to produce the proper baseline for your own page builder layout, which makes it easy to create custom articles as needed. Lightweight Theme
GeneratePress Replies: Affordable And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Core GeneratePress motif is available at no cost at WordPress.org.
That said, If you’re seriously interested in using GeneratePress, I feel you should buy the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that is what makes the theme so elastic. The free version doesn’t give you nearly as many settings in the WordPress Customizer. And you will also miss out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium is also still quite affordable. It costs just $39.95, which provides you use on infinite sites. You’ll also get a 40% discount if you want to renew to keep on receiving support and updates following the first year (you can, of course, keep using GeneratePress after the first year without renewing — you just won’t get any more updates).
When You believe that the typical premium WordPress theme will usually cost around $60, GeneratePress provides a fantastic value.
As I said, I don’t think GeneratePress is for everybody.
If You want a niche-specific theme, you can probably save time by buying a theme that fits your requirements for your market out of day one.
But If you’re willing to spend some time changing preferences, then GeneratePress’ mode controls give you the flexibility to flip it into any sort of WordPress website. Or, you may even be able to locate a starter site that fits your needs to save some time.
Additionally, It is one of the fastest-loading WordPress topics that you will locate. Therefore, if you’re looking for the best performance possible, using GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s foundation is a good decision.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, you shouldn’t have any problem making your website load in under one second. Lightweight Theme