Intro Most Customizable Free WordPress Theme
Within the past 10 years, I have used a lot of different WordPress themes and have been very disappointed. Up till recently, I had been using MyThemeShop, that was pretty excellent. However, I had to do a lot of customization to make it do and operate how I wanted it to. A few of weeks ago I decided to provide GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it’s by far the best WordPress theme I’ve discovered in a decade . I was blown away and am moving all of my websites to GeneratePress. I’ll enter precisely why in my comprehensive GeneratePress review below. And if you’re wondering, yes I’ve tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X motif, Divi in addition to many other lightweight and thicker multicolored themes. Most Customizable Free WordPress Theme
GeneratePress is a totally free WordPress theme created by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I have 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 tend to dismiss everything from the repository. Typically because a great deal of stuff on there isn’t that good, or not supported for long. However, in this case, that was a mistake. The motif now has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ active installs, with over 500 5-star ratings. So obviously Tom is doing something right here.
I Actually installed the free version of the motif and in a matter of 15 minutes purchased the superior version. I could tell right off the bat, the developer was thinking precisely how I was envisioning a theme should get the job done. And I will go into that more below, but let us first look at some of the features. I will be covering the premium edition of the theme, since it’s worth . In fact, Tom, in the event that you ever read this and so are seeing Scottsdale, Arizona, coffees on me.
Super lightweight and fast. 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 of the devices.
Schema built-in, for greater results in SERPs.
Dramatic integration using all the WordPress Customizer. I haven’t been a fan of this customizer previously, but Tom does it correctly.
Compatible with popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Fantastic browser support back to IE8.
Additionally, it works great with 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 people using Beaver Builder have experienced success.
Font wonderful built-in.
A lot of filters and hooks which make it good 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 site, the theme has existed long enough that everything I Googled throughout the setup process was found within a couple of seconds in their own forum.
Going Deep Into GeneratePress
Now it is Time to the fun part! I test a new theme right from the box without any customizations to just see how fast the base is. This tells me a lot of what I can expect by the time that I add everything to it. Running the stock GeneratePress WordPress motif 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 generate a lot of big files, but that is not the situation. You can tell that Tom literally worked hard on ensuring that every record packed in GeneratePress is as small as possible. With HTTP/2, the number of documents isn’t as significant. But the dimensions is! Have a peek at some of the core 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 programmer that cares about performance! And I’ve Seen exactly the same throughout all of the premium add-ons. They are as small as you can possibly get them. In fact, Font Awesome is probably the largest file included. And that is not even his. Together with Font Awesome 5 arriving around the corner, we can anticipate this to get smaller too.
The premium add-ons Are installation in what I would call a modular layout. You can activate/deactivate whatever you aren’t using to guarantee they do not load on your website. As the co-developer of the perfmatters plugin that has a script supervisor built, I felt right at home with this. Everything ought to be made this way.
If You are interested, I’m using the following add-ons on this website:
No Child Theme Needed
One of The best characteristics of GeneratePress is that I no longer need to use a Child theme. This makes my life so much simpler. No longer editing my functions.php or header.php files. I can literally upgrade my GeneratePress theme this exact moment rather than lose a single customization. The hooks add-on definitely helps make it possible. It allows you to add custom code/PHP anywhere throughout your WordPress site. Most Customizable Free WordPress Theme
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post you have a lot of alternatives. You are able to change the sidebar design and the footer widgets.
You Can quickly swap a page involving the default option to a full width page, as well as disable elements.
The WordPress customizer options is really where GeneratePress really shines! Remember, lots of these choices are permitted by the superior add-ons. I can’t show you everything, otherwise, we would be here daily. However, allow me to show you couple which actually come in handy.
Another Plugin I highly recommend grabbing is your free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this can be created by precisely the exact same developer as GeneratePress. It enables you a super simple way to incorporate responsive columns into any page or article. Characteristics include:
Desktop grid thickness
Tablet grid width
Mobile grid thickness
Add Customized courses
Add custom inline designs
Equal height columns
This is An example below:
You might want to Also catch his incredible WP Display Posts plugin too. See my featured posts on the sidebar of this website? That is using the WP Show Posts plugin. I have it set to show 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 great.
The Sections add-on in the premium edition of GeneratePress allows you to do all kinds of things concerning design. Think of it like a page builder without the bloat. GeneratePress is certainly not just for blogs! I am in reality utilizing GeneratePress for our ecommerce website (perfmatters.io) which is operating Easy Digital Downloads. Feel free to check it out. But as you can see below, it looks nothing like a blog.
For those Of you that are regular readers, you likely didn’t even notice I changed the entire motif 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’s a comparison under.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My older MyThemeShop motif was already pretty fast, but I spent a lot of time customizing it. In reality, I’ve gotten a lot 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 theme I was able to achieve faster speeds and 600 fewer lines of code! And remember, I don’t have a child motif. All the customizations were made with the awesome GP hooks and snippets plugin (both CSS and PHP).
Like the WordPress theme I’ve running on woorkup? You are in luck. Tom asked if he could make a replica of woorkup to your new GeneratePress site library. I’m pleased to allow you to know that now you can put in my woorkup theme in your GeneratePress site with just a click! It is known as the Marketer motif. Get started with a fantastic blog layout immediately.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved within my personal website, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a motif from Array Themes. It’s a pretty basic minimum site, as I do not use it to get much. Since you can see it loaded pretty quickly.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to replicate the whole look 100% in GeneratePress in under one hour. And as you can see it loads faster! Amazing. I was even able to get rid of a couple plugins that weren’t needed due to GP.
forgemedia.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved over our business site, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a theme from Array Themes. It’s a fairly basic minimal site, as we just use it to our LLC. Since you can see it loaded pretty fast. Most Customizable Free WordPress Theme
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to move everything over and get it looking exactly how I needed it in under one hour. And as you can see it loads faster! Amazing. I managed 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 of my sites for this (which includes several EDD e-commerce websites ). After I’ve got my 9 sites all running in GP with no child themes, my entire life will be a breeze! The developer has revived my faith in multi-purpose themes, and that when done the correct way, can actually perform faster.
And The best news is, I 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 that wish to have the ability to customize and control exactly how their site appears.
You Can make GeneratePress perform pretty much anything. And because GeneratePress has a focus on performance, the site that you build will have a fantastic base to make it load quickly.
Since Of that, people who assemble WordPress sites for a living love GeneratePress. They’ll typically pair it with a WordPress page builder and use it for literally any kind of site.
However GeneratePress Might Not Be A Fantastic Fit If…
…you Want something that will instantly appear perfect out of the box.
For Example, if you know you want to create a fashion blog, you may be happier choosing a market theme that is developed exclusively for fashion bloggers.
Even though GeneratePress has gotten a great deal easier to use, as a result of its pre-built Website Library, GeneratePress still looks very barebones if you initially install it.
So To create GeneratePress look how you would like it to, you will most likely will need to go in and personalize things. And though the significant advantage of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, many users, particularly casual users, do not like having to make those changes .
GeneratePress Features Which Make It Unique
Here Are a few of the particular characteristics that clarify why GeneratePress is so common.
Lots Of Customization Options In The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Past Functionality, another place where GeneratePress does well is its customization options.
GeneratePress Utilizes the WordPress Customizer for customization, which is convenient as you will have the ability to see all of the changes that you create in real time.
The Free variant of GeneratePress gives you decent possibilities, but should you have GeneratePress Premium, you will be able to customize pretty much all about your website.
For Example, if you go into the Layout area, you may configure detailed settings to your:
- Header — you can move your header around and change its styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, such as sticky menus
- Sidebar design — you can utilize a Couple of sidebars
- Blog post layout — like featured image size, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — just like the number of widgets to add
Similarly, The Typography area enables you to control the font to get every single element on your website, such as buttons:
And You also receive a thorough region to control the color of each and every element on your website.
All Whatsoever, GeneratePress will provide you a lot more customization options from the WordPress Customizer compared to most other themes. This level of detail may be a little overwhelming if you are a beginner. But once you understand the way the preferences come together, you’ll have complete control on how your website appears.
Optimized Performance And Quick Page Load Times
Around All its features, GeneratePress consistently has a focus on exceptional 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 poorly coded topics can even exceed 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also has no code dependencies, which will help you avoid the leave blocking error that Google Pagespeed Insights often mentions.
Place That together, and you obtain a superfast-loading theme. How quickly? To give you a sense, I ran a little test.
First, I set up a vacant site using a haphazard popular WordPress.org motif (Envo Magazine). After analyzing 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’s Not bad at all! However, GeneratePress can perform.
Next, I activated GeneratePress on exactly 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% faster
- Had a page size of 26.8 kB, ~90% smaller
- Had 9 requests, ~40% fewer
If You do the exact same test with other themes, you are going to continue to see that GeneratePress is one of those fastest-loading WordPress themes in life. Most Customizable Free WordPress Theme
Other Helpful Premium Extensions, Plus A Modular Approach
Past Giving you more style 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 on a per-page basis.
- Sections — that is kind of like lightweight page building. It lets you create different”sections” onto a page, each with their own layout and column settings.
To Stay lightweight, GeneratePress also gives you a modular interface where you could pick and choose exactly which characteristics you would like to trigger.
That Way, you do not have to slow down your site for a feature that you’ll never use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Site
In The last, you had to build GeneratePress sites from a blank canvas no matter what, which left the theme difficult for casual users to set up.
Earlier In 2018, however, the developer added a fresh Site Library attribute for GeneratePress Premium users which allows you easily import any one of those 25+ pre-built demo sites.
You Can import them right from the 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 Provide You Detailed Control Over Every Piece Of Content
With Most themes, every post and page will use the same settings for the most part. You might have some custom formats or templates — but you do not have very much control past that.
GeneratePress Changes that by giving you a new Design meta name box for every single page and post:
You Can utilize this meta box to:
- Change the number of sidebars your site 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, article featured picture, article title, or footer
- Create a special”container” for your page builder
Where These controls are the most useful is if you’re using a WordPress page builder.
By Disabling certain components, you are able to create the proper baseline for your own page builder layout, which makes it easy to create custom articles as needed. Most Customizable Free WordPress Theme
GeneratePress Replies: Affordable And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Heart GeneratePress theme can be obtained at no cost at WordPress.org.
That said, If you’re serious about utilizing GeneratePress, I feel you should buy the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that’s what produces the theme so elastic. The free version does not give you nearly as numerous configurations in the WordPress Customizer. And you’ll also lose out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium can be still quite affordable. It costs only $39.95, which provides you use on unlimited websites . You will also get a 40% discount if you would like to renew to continue receiving support and updates after the first year (you can, of course, continue using GeneratePress following the first year without beating — you won’t get any more upgrades ).
When You believe the normal premium WordPress theme will usually cost around $60, GeneratePress provides a fantastic value.
As I said, I do not think GeneratePress is for everyone.
If You desire a niche-specific motif, you can probably save time by purchasing a theme that fits your needs for your niche out of day one.
However, If you’re willing to spend some time changing preferences, then GeneratePress’ style controls give you the flexibility to turn it into any sort of WordPress website. Or, you might even be able to locate a starter website that fulfills your needs to save some time.
Additionally, It is among the fastest-loading WordPress themes that you will locate. So if you’re looking for the best performance possible, utilizing GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s base is a great decision.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, so you shouldn’t have any difficulty making your website load in under one minute. Most Customizable Free WordPress Theme