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Within the past ten years, I have used a lot of different WordPress themes and have been very disappointed. Up till recently, I had been using MyThemeShop, which was pretty excellent. However, I still had to perform a lot of customization to make it do and work the way I wanted it to. A few weeks ago I decided to provide GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it is by far the finest WordPress theme I’ve discovered in 10 years. I had been blown away and am moving all of my sites to GeneratePress. I’ll enter precisely why in my in-depth GeneratePress review below. And if you’re wondering, yes I’ve tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X theme, Divi as well as several other lightweight and heavier multi-purpose themes. Template Web WordPress Free
GeneratePress is a free WordPress theme created by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I have actually seen it for many years from the WordPress repository. Most of you realize that I am fairly picky when it comes to web performance, so I tend to ignore everything in the repository. Typically because a lot of stuff on there isn’t that great, or not encouraged for long. Nonetheless, in this circumstance, that was a mistake. The theme now has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ busy matches, with over 500 5-star evaluations. So obviously Tom is doing something right here.
I Really 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 programmer was thinking exactly how I was imagining a theme should get the job done. And I’ll go into that more below, but let’s first look at some of the qualities. I’m going to be covering the premium edition of the theme, since it’s worth very penny. In fact, Tom, if you read this and 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 of the devices.
Schema built-in, for better results in SERPs.
Impressive 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 all popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Great browser support back to IE8.
It also works great with the popular 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 people using Beaver Builder have experienced success.
Font wonderful built-in.
Tons of filters and hooks which make it great for developers.
Great active support from the programmer. Normally, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation is also incredible. Besides have great documentation on their site, the theme has existed long enough that everything I wholeheartedly throughout the setup process was found inside a couple of seconds in their own forum.
Going Deep Into GeneratePress
Now it’s Time to the fun part! I test a brand new theme right from the box without any customizations to see how fast the foundation 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 motif on Kinsta hosting clocked in at a whopping 265 ms loading time. I was quite impressed.
One Thing I was worried about with GeneratePress was that the modular design was going to generate a lot of big files, but that isn’t the case. 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 amount of documents is not as significant. But the size is! Take a look at a few 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
This is a developer that cares about performance! And I have Seen exactly the same throughout all the premium add-ons. They’re literally as small as you can possibly 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 could anticipate that to secure smaller also.
The premium add-ons Are installation in what I’d call a modular layout. You can activate/deactivate anything you aren’t using to ensure they don’t load on your site. Since the co-developer of this perfmatters plugin that has a script supervisor built-in, I felt at home for this. Everything should be made this way.
If You are curious, I’m using the next add-ons on this site:
No Child Theme Needed
One of The best features of GeneratePress is that I no more need to use a Child theme. This makes my life much easier. No longer editing my functions.php or header.php documents. I can literally update my GeneratePress theme this very minute and not lose one customization. The hooks add-on definitely helps make this possible. It allows you to incorporate custom code/PHP everywhere throughout your WordPress website. Template Web WordPress Free
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post that you have a lot of alternatives. You can change the sidebar design and the footer widgets.
You Can quickly swap a page involving the default to a full width page, in addition to disable components.
The WordPress customizer choices is where GeneratePress really shines! Bear in mind, lots of these options are enabled from the premium add-ons. I can’t show you everything, otherwise, we would be here all day. But let me show you few 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 enables you a super easy way to incorporate responsive columns into any page or article. Features include:
Desktop grid thickness
Tablet grid width
Mobile grid width
Insert Customized classes
Insert custom inline designs
Equal height columns
Here is An example below:
You might want to Also catch his incredible WP Show Posts plugin too. See my featured posts on the sidebar of this website? That’s using the WP Show Posts plugin. I have it set to show posts from a particular”featured” category. You can also have it show past modified/updated articles, recent posts, etc.. I am using the free version and it works terrific.
The Segments add-in in the premium edition of GeneratePress allows you to 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) which is running Easy Digital Downloads. Feel free to check it out. However, as you can see below, it looks nothing like a blog.
For all those Of you who are regular readers, you likely did not even notice I changed the entire theme that powers woorkup.com. It only took me about an hour to get GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop theme that I had spent annually customizing. Here’s a comparison below.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My old MyThemeShop motif was pretty quickly, 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 publish all my customizations. My advice today is, just get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
With the New GeneratePress motif I managed to attain faster speeds and 600 fewer lines of code! And remember, I don’t have a kid motif. All the customizations were made with 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 to your new GeneratePress site library. I’m happy to let you know that you can now put in my woorkup theme in your GeneratePress website with just a click! It’s called the Marketer theme. Get started with a fantastic blog layout instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved over my personal website, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a theme from Array Themes. It is a pretty 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 had been Able to replicate the entire look 100% in GeneratePress in under one hour. And since you can view it loads even faster! Amazing. I was even able to eliminate a few plugins which 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 theme from Array Themes. It’s a fairly basic minimum website, as we simply use it to our LLC. Since you can see it already loaded pretty fast. Template Web WordPress Free
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to again move everything over and get it looking exactly how I wanted it in under an hour. And since you can view 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 not express my Excitement about finding GeneratePress and I am moving over all of my websites for this (which comprises several EDD e-commerce websites ). After I have my 9 websites 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 , and that when done the right way, can actually perform faster.
And The best thing isI finally have a thousand more choices to pick from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Good For…
GeneratePress Is the ideal option for performance-focused users who wish to be able to customize and control exactly how their site looks.
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 fast.
Because Of that, people who build WordPress websites for a living love GeneratePress. They will typically pair it with a WordPress site builder and use it for literally any type of site.
However GeneratePress Might Not Be A Good Fit If…
…you Want something which will instantly appear perfect out of the box.
For Example, if you realize you wish to create a fashion blog, you may be happier choosing a market theme that is developed exclusively for trend bloggers.
Even though GeneratePress has gotten a great deal simpler to use, thanks to its pre-built Website Library, GeneratePress still seems very barebones when you first install it.
So To create GeneratePress look how you want it to, you will most likely need to go in and personalize matters. And while the substantial benefit of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, some users, particularly casual users, don’t like having to make those changes themselves.
GeneratePress Features Which Make It Unique
Here Are some of the particular features that explain why GeneratePress is so common.
Lots Of Customization Options From The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Beyond Performance, another place where GeneratePress does nicely is its customization choices.
GeneratePress Uses the WordPress Customizer for customization, and this can be convenient because you will be able to see all of the changes that you make in real time.
The Free version of GeneratePress gives you decent possibilities, but should you own GeneratePress Premium, you will be able to customize nearly everything about your website.
For Example, if you go in the Design area, you can configure detailed settings to 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 layout — you can utilize a Couple of sidebars
- Blog post design — such as featured picture dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — like how many widgets to include
Similarly, The Typography place enables you to control the font to get every single element on your website, such as buttons:
And You also get a detailed region to control the colour of each and every element on your website.
All Whatsoever, GeneratePress will give you much more customization options from the WordPress Customizer than most other topics. This amount of detail might be a little overwhelming if you are a newcomer. But as soon as you realize the way the preferences come together, you will have complete control over how your website looks.
Optimized Performance And Quick Page Load Times
Across All its features, GeneratePress always includes a focus on excellent performance and clean code. The entire theme is less than 30 kB, and it will be about as little as you are ever going to find for a WordPress theme. Even most other optimized WordPress themes are still 200+ kB. And some poorly coded topics can even exceed 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also has no code dependencies, which helps you avoid the render blocking error that Google Pagespeed Insights often mentions.
Put That collectively, and you obtain a superfast-loading theme. How fast? To give you a sense, I conducted a small test.
First, I put up an empty website utilizing a haphazard popular WordPress.org motif (Envo Magazine). After testing its performance with Pingdom, it
- Had a performance grade of 77
- Loaded in 1.05 moments
- 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 same test site without changing anything else. Here’s how GeneratePress failed:
- Had a performance grade of 87, 10 points greater
- 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 themes, you are going to continue to see that GeneratePress is one of those fastest-loading WordPress topics in life. Template Web WordPress Free
Other Helpful Premium Extensions, Plus A Modular Approach
Beyond Giving you more style controls in the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other helpful features like:
- Elements — a unique feature that allows you create customized hooks, page headers, or layout templates.
- Page Header — lets you create a unique page header on a per-page basis.
- Sections — that 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 Stay lightweight, GeneratePress also gives you a modular interface where you can pick and choose what characteristics you would like to trigger.
That Way, you don’t 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 past, you needed to construct 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 programmer added a fresh Website Library feature for GeneratePress Premium users which lets you easily import any one of those 25+ pre-built demo sites.
You Can import them directly 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 Comprehensive Control Over Every Bit Of Content
With Most themes, every post and page will use the very same configurations for the most part. You might have some custom templates or formats — but you don’t have very much control beyond 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 the number of sidebars your site uses, or the sidebar orientation (like altering the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose the number of footer widgets to use
- Disable certain components, like your header, navigation menu, post featured image, post title, or footer
- Produce a special”container” for your own page builder
Where These controls would be the most helpful is if you are using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain elements, you’re able to produce the correct baseline for your own page builder design, which makes it effortless to create custom content as needed. Template Web WordPress Free
GeneratePress Replies: Affordable And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Heart GeneratePress motif can be obtained at no cost at WordPress.org.
That said, If you’re serious about utilizing GeneratePress, I feel you need to purchase the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that’s what makes the theme so elastic. The free version does not give you almost as numerous settings from the WordPress Customizer. And you’ll also miss out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium is also still fairly affordable. It costs only $39.95, and that gives you use on unlimited sites. You’ll also get a 40% discount if you want to renew to continue receiving support and upgrades after the first year (you can, obviously, continue using GeneratePress after the initial year without beating — you just won’t get any more updates).
When You consider that the normal premium WordPress theme will often cost around $60, GeneratePress offers a great price.
As I mentioned, I don’t think GeneratePress is for everyone.
If You want a niche-specific theme, you can probably save time by purchasing a theme that fits your requirements for your niche from day one.
But If you are ready to spend some time altering settings, GeneratePress’ mode controls give you the flexibility to turn it into any type of WordPress website. Or, you might even be able to locate a starter website that fulfills your needs to save a little time.
Additionally, It is among the fastest-loading WordPress topics you will locate. So if you’re looking for the best performance possible, utilizing GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s foundation is a great decision.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, so you should have no difficulty making your website load in under one second. Template Web WordPress Free