Intro Most Downloaded Free WordPress Themes
Within the previous ten decades, I’ve used a great deal of different WordPress themes and have been very disappointed. Up till recently, I had been using MyThemeShop, which was fairly good. But I still had to do a great deal of customization to make it perform and operate the way I needed 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 a decade . I had been blown away and am now moving all my sites to GeneratePress. I’ll go into exactly why in my comprehensive GeneratePress review below. And if you’re wondering, yes I have attempted Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X theme, Divi as well as several other lightweight and heavier multi-purpose themes. Most Downloaded Free WordPress Themes
GeneratePress is a totally free WordPress theme created by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I’ve actually 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 is not that great, or not supported for long. However, in this case, this was a mistake. The motif now has more than half a million downloads, 80,000+ busy matches, with over 500 5-star ratings. So clearly Tom is doing something right here.
I Really installed the free version of the theme and in a matter of 15 minutes purchased the premium version. I could tell right off the bat, the programmer was thinking precisely how I was envisioning a theme should work. And I’ll go into that more below, but let us first look at a number of the qualities. I’m going to be covering the premium edition of the theme, since it’s worth . Actually, Tom, if you ever read this and so are visiting Scottsdale, Arizona, java 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 biggest reasons I adore GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks fantastic across all devices.
Schema built-in, for greater results in SERPs.
Dramatic integration using all the WordPress Customizer. I haven’t been a fan of the customizer in the past, but Tom does it right.
Compatible with popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Great browser service back to IE8.
Additionally, it works great with the favorite fast-growing Elementor page builder. If you would like to dive into even more customizations, these are a great combo. I’ve also read that individuals using Beaver Builder have had success.
Font awesome built in.
Tons of hooks and filters that make it great for developers.
Great active support from the developer. Normally, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation can be incredible. Besides have great documentation on their website, the theme has been around long enough that everything I Googled throughout the setup procedure was found inside a couple of seconds in their own forum.
Diving Into GeneratePress
Now it is Time for the fun part! I test a new theme right out of the box without any customizations to just see how quickly the base is. This tells me a lot of what I can expect by the time that I add everything for this. 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 design was going to generate a lot of big files, but this is not the situation. You may tell that Tom literally worked hard on ensuring every record loaded in GeneratePress is as small as possible. With HTTP/2, the amount of files is not as significant. However, the dimensions is! Have a look 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 programmer that cares about performance! And I’ve Seen the same during each of the premium add-ons. They are as small as possible get them. In reality, Font Awesome is probably the biggest file contained. And that isn’t even his. With Font Awesome 5 arriving around the corner, we can anticipate that to get smaller also.
The premium add-ons Are setup in what I would call a modular layout. You can activate/deactivate anything you aren’t using to ensure they do not load on your website. As the co-developer of the perfmatters plugin which has a script supervisor built, I felt at home for this. Everything ought to be designed this way.
If You are interested, I am using the next add-ons on this site:
No Child Theme Needed
One of The best features of GeneratePress is that I no longer need to use a Child motif . This makes my life so much simpler. No more editing my functions.php or header.php documents. I can literally update my GeneratePress theme this exact minute and not shed a single customization. The hooks add-on certainly can help make it possible. It allows you to add custom code/PHP everywhere throughout your WordPress website. Most Downloaded Free WordPress Themes
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post that you have a great deal of options. You can alter the sidebar design and the footer widgets.
You Can easily swap a page involving the default option to a complete width page, in addition to disable components.
The WordPress customizer options is where GeneratePress really shines! Bear in mind, a lot of these options are enabled by the premium add-ons. I can not show you everything, otherwise, we would be here all day. But let me 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 can be made by the exact same developer as GeneratePress. It enables you a super easy way to incorporate responsive columns into any page or post. Characteristics include:
Desktop grid width
Tablet grid thickness
Mobile grid thickness
Insert Customized courses
Insert custom inline styles
Equal height columns
Here is An example below:
You May Want to Also catch his incredible WP Display Posts plugin also. See my featured posts on the sidebar of this site? That is using the WP Display Posts plugin. I have it set to show posts from a specific”featured” category. You might also have it show last modified/updated posts, recent posts, etc.. I am using the free version and it works great.
The Sections add-on in the premium edition of GeneratePress lets you perform all sorts of things concerning design. Think of it like a webpage builder without the bloat. GeneratePress is certainly not just for blogs! I’m in fact using GeneratePress for our ecommerce website (perfmatters.io) that is operating Easy Digital Downloads. Feel free to look it over. But as you can see below, it looks like a blog.
For all those Of those that are regular readers, you probably did not even notice that I changed the entire theme that powers woorkup.com. It just took me about an hour for GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop theme that I had spent a year customizing. Here’s a comparison below.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My older MyThemeShop motif was already pretty fast, but I invested a lot of time customizing it. In reality, I have gotten a great deal of emails from you guys asking me to print all of my customizations. My advice now is, simply 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. All the customizations were created with the wonderful 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 could make a copy of woorkup for the new GeneratePress site library. I am happy to let you know that you can now install my woorkup motif in your GeneratePress website with just a single click! It’s called the Marketer motif. Get started with a fantastic blog design immediately.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved over my personal website, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I was using a motif from Array Themes. It’s a fairly basic minimal site, as I don’t use it for much. As you can see it already loaded pretty fast.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to replicate the entire appearance 100% in GeneratePress in under an hour. And since you can see it loads even faster! Amazing. I was 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 organization site, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a motif from Array Themes. It is a pretty basic minimal site, as we just use it for our LLC. As you can see it already loaded pretty fast. Most Downloaded Free WordPress Themes
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to 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 eliminate a total of four plugins and it dropped my whole page weight 2x!
I can not express my Excitement about locating GeneratePress and I am moving over all of my websites to it (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 is going to be a breeze! The developer has revived my faith in multi-purpose subjects , which when done the right way, can actually perform quicker.
And The best news isI finally have a billion more choices to choose from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Good For…
GeneratePress Is the ideal option for performance-focused users who wish 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 performance, the website that you build will have a great foundation to make it load quickly.
Since Of that, those 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 kind of website.
But GeneratePress Might Not Be A Good Combination If…
…you Need something which will immediately look perfect from the box.
For Example, if you know you want to produce a fashion blog, you might be happier picking out a niche theme that is developed exclusively for fashion bloggers.
While GeneratePress is becoming a great deal easier to use, as a result of its pre-built Site Library, GeneratePress still looks very barebones if you initially install it.
So To create GeneratePress look how you want it to, you’ll most likely will need to go in and personalize matters. And while the significant benefit of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, many users, especially casual users, do not like having to make those changes .
GeneratePress Features Which Make It Unique
Here Are some of the particular features that clarify why GeneratePress is so popular.
Lots Of Customization Options From The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Beyond Functionality, another place where GeneratePress does nicely is its customization options.
GeneratePress Utilizes the WordPress Customizer for customization, and this is convenient as you will have the ability to see all the changes that you make in real time.
The Free variant of GeneratePress provides you adequate options, but should you have GeneratePress Premium, you’ll have the ability to customize pretty much everything about your site.
For Example, if you go into the Layout area, you may configure detailed settings to your:
- Header — you can move your header round and change its own styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, including sticky menus
- Sidebar layout — you can utilize one or two sidebars
- Blog post design — such as featured picture dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — like the number of widgets to include
Similarly, The Typography place lets you control the font for each and every element on your website, including buttons:
And You also receive a detailed region to control the color of every single element on your site.
All In all, GeneratePress will provide you a lot more customization choices in the WordPress Customizer compared to most other themes. This amount of detail may be a little overwhelming if you’re a newcomer. But once you realize how the preferences come together, you’ll have full control over how your website looks.
Optimized Performance And Quick Page Load Times
Across All its attributes, GeneratePress consistently includes a focus on excellent performance and clean code. The whole motif is less than 30 kB, which 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 a few badly coded topics can even exceed 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also has no code dependencies, which helps you avoid the render obstructing error that Google Pagespeed Insights often mentions.
Place That together, and you get a superfast-loading motif. How quickly? To give you an idea, I ran a small test.
First, I put up an empty website utilizing a random popular WordPress.org motif (Envo Magazine). After testing its performance with Pingdom, it:
- Had a performance grade of 77
- Loaded in 1.05 seconds
- Had a page size of 243.9 kB
- Had 15 requests
That is Not bad in any way! 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 better
- Loaded in 666 ms, ~37% quicker
- Had a page size of 26.8 kB, ~90% smaller
- Had 9 asks, ~40% fewer
If You perform that same test with different themes, you are going to continue to find that GeneratePress is one of those fastest-loading WordPress topics in life. Most Downloaded Free WordPress Themes
Other Helpful Premium Extensions, Plus Much Modular Approach
Past Giving you more design controls from the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other helpful features such as:
- Elements — a exceptional feature that lets you create customized hooks, page headers, or design templates.
- Page Header — allows you create a exceptional page header onto a per-page basis.
- Sections — that is sort of like lightweight page building. It lets you create separate”sections” on a page, each with their own layout and column preferences.
To Stay lightweight, GeneratePress also provides you a modular port where you could pick and choose what features you want to trigger.
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 Website
In The past, you had to construct GeneratePress websites from a blank canvas no matter what, which made the motif difficult for casual users to set up.
Earlier In 2018, however, the programmer added a fresh Website Library feature for GeneratePress Premium users which allows you easily import any among the 25+ pre-built demonstration websites .
You Can import them right from your WordPress dashboard.
Yes — this site still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click on a couple buttons to import a presentation site.
Page-Level Settings Provide You Comprehensive Control Over Each Bit Of Content
With Most topics, every post and page will use the same settings for the most part. You may have some custom templates or formats — but you do not have very much control beyond that.
GeneratePress Changes that by giving you a brand new Design meta name 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 (like altering the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose how many footer widgets to utilize
- Disable certain components, like your header, navigation menu, post featured image, post title, or footer
- Produce a special”container” to your page builder
Where These controls would be the most helpful is if you’re using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain components, you are able to produce the proper baseline for your own page builder layout, making it easy to create custom content as needed. Most Downloaded Free WordPress Themes
GeneratePress Replies: Affordable And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Heart GeneratePress motif can be obtained for free at WordPress.org.
Nevertheless, If you’re seriously interested in using GeneratePress, I feel you need to buy the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that’s what makes the theme so elastic. The free version doesn’t give you nearly as many configurations from the WordPress Customizer. And you will also miss out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium can be still quite reasonably priced. It costs only $39.95, and that gives you use on unlimited websites . You will also get a 40% discount if you would like to renew to keep on receiving support and upgrades after the initial year (you can, obviously, keep using GeneratePress after the initial year without renewing — you just won’t receive any more upgrades ).
When You believe the typical premium WordPress theme will usually cost around $60, GeneratePress provides a great value.
As I said, I do not believe GeneratePress is for everyone.
If You desire a niche-specific theme, you can probably save time by buying a theme that satisfies your requirements for your niche out of day one.
But If you’re ready to spend time changing settings, GeneratePress’ style 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 you will find. Therefore, if you’re seeking the best performance possible, using GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s base is a good choice.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, so you shouldn’t have any problem making your site load in under one second. Most Downloaded Free WordPress Themes