Introduction Top Free WordPress Themes 2016
Within the previous 10 years, I’ve used a great deal of different WordPress themes and have been very disappointed. Up till recently, I was using MyThemeShop, that was pretty good. However, I had to perform a great deal of customization to allow it to do and operate how I wanted it to. A couple weeks ago I decided to provide GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it’s by far the finest WordPress theme I have found in a decade . I had been dismissed and am now moving all of my websites to GeneratePress. I will go into precisely why in my comprehensive GeneratePress review below. And if you’re wondering, yes I have tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X motif, Divi in addition to several other lightweight and thicker multicolored themes. Top Free WordPress Themes 2016
GeneratePress is a free WordPress theme created by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I’ve really seen it for many years from the WordPress repository. Most of you know that I am fairly picky when it comes to web performance, so I have a tendency to dismiss everything in the repository. Typically because a lot of stuff on there is not that good, or not encouraged for long. Nonetheless, in this circumstance, this was a mistake. The theme now has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ busy installs, with over 500 5-star evaluations. So obviously Tom is doing something right here.
I Really installed the free version of the motif and in a matter of 15 minutes bought the superior version. I could tell right off the bat, the developer was thinking exactly how I was imagining a theme should work. And I’ll go into that more below, but let’s first look at some of the features. I will be covering the superior edition of the theme, because it’s worth . Actually, Tom, in the event that you read this and are seeing Scottsdale, Arizona, java on me.
Super lightweight and fast. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable items you don’t need running. This is one of the biggest reasons I adore GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks fantastic across all devices.
Schema built-in, for better outcomes in SERPs.
Impressive integration with the WordPress Customizer. I haven’t been a lover of this customizer in the past, but Tom does it right.
Compatible with popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Great browser support 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 terrific combo. I’ve also read that people using Beaver Builder have had success.
Font wonderful built in.
A lot of hooks and filters that make it good for developers.
Excellent active service from the programmer. Normally, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation can be incredible. Besides have good documentation on their website, the theme has existed long enough that everything I Googled throughout the setup procedure was found within a few seconds from their own forum.
Going Deep Into GeneratePress
Now it is Time to the fun part! I always test a brand new theme right out of the box with no customizations to just see how quickly the base is. This tells me a great deal 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 concerned about with GeneratePress was that the modular design was going to produce a whole lot of big files, but that is not the situation. You may tell that Tom actually worked hard on making sure that every file loaded in GeneratePress is as little as possible. With HTTP/2, the number of documents is not as important. But the size is! Have a look at some of the center 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
That is a programmer that cares about performance! And I’ve Seen the same throughout all the premium add-ons. They are as small as you can possibly get them. In fact, Font Awesome is probably the biggest file contained. And that is not even his. Together with Font Awesome 5 arriving round the cornerwe can expect this to secure smaller also.
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 site. As the co-developer of this perfmatters plugin which has a script supervisor built, I felt right at home with this. Everything ought to be made this way.
If You are curious, 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 have to use a young child theme. This makes my life much simpler. No longer editing my functions.php or header.php files. I will literally update my GeneratePress motif this very minute rather than shed one customization. The hooks add-on definitely helps make this possible. It allows you to add custom code/PHP anywhere throughout your WordPress site. Top Free WordPress Themes 2016
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post that you have a great deal of options. You are able to change the sidebar layout and the footer widgets.
You Can easily swap a page between the default option to a complete width page, in addition to disable elements.
The WordPress customizer options is where GeneratePress really shines! Bear in mind, lots of these options are permitted from the premium add-ons. I can not 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 your free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this can be created by precisely the exact same developer as GeneratePress. It allows you a super simple way to add responsive columns into any page or article. Features include:
Desktop grid width
Tablet grid thickness
Mobile grid thickness
Add custom classes
Insert custom inline styles
Equal height columns
Here is An example under:
You might want to Also catch his amazing WP Display Posts plugin too. See my featured articles on the sidebar of this site? That’s using the WP Show 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 Sections add-on in the premium edition of GeneratePress lets you perform all kinds of things concerning design. Consider it like a page builder with no bloat. GeneratePress is definitely not only for blogs! I’m in fact utilizing GeneratePress to our ecommerce website (perfmatters.io) that is operating Easy Digital Downloads. Feel free to check it out. However, as you can see below, it looks like a blog.
For those Of you that are regular readers, you probably didn’t even notice I changed the whole theme that forces 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 under.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My older MyThemeShop theme was pretty fast, but I invested a great deal of time customizing it. In reality, I’ve gotten a lot of emails from you guys asking me to publish all of my customizations. My advice now is, simply get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
With the New GeneratePress theme I was able to attain 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 with the wonderful GP hooks and snippets plugin (both CSS and PHP).
Like the WordPress theme I have working on woorkup? You’re in luck. Tom asked if he can make a copy of woorkup to your brand new GeneratePress site library. I am happy to allow you to know that now you can put in my woorkup theme on your GeneratePress website with just a single click! It is known as the Marketer motif. Get started with a great blog layout instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
Additionally, I Moved within my private site, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a motif from Array Themes. It is a pretty basic minimum site, since I do not use it for much. As you can see it already loaded pretty quickly.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to duplicate the whole appearance 100% in GeneratePress in under an hour. And as you can view it loads even faster! Amazing. I was even able to get rid of a few plugins which weren’t needed due to GP.
forgemedia.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
I also Moved over our organization website, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I was using a motif from Array Themes. It’s a pretty basic minimum site, as we simply use it for our LLC. Since you can see it already loaded pretty fast. Top Free WordPress Themes 2016
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to move everything over and get it looking just how I needed it in under an hour. And since you can see it loads 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 finding GeneratePress and I am moving over all my websites for this (which includes several EDD e-commerce websites ). Once I’ve got my 9 sites all running in GP without any child topics, my entire life is going to be a breeze! The developer has revived my faith in multi-purpose subjects , and that when done the correct way, can actually perform quicker.
And The best thing isI finally have a thousand more options to pick from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Good For…
GeneratePress Is the perfect option for performance-focused users who wish to have the ability to personalize and control exactly how their site appears.
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 fast.
Because Of that, those who assemble WordPress websites for a living love GeneratePress. They will typically pair it with a WordPress page builder and use it for literally any type of site.
But GeneratePress Might Not Be A Good Fit If…
…you Need something that will instantly look perfect from the box.
For Example, if you realize you wish to create a fashion blog, you might be happier choosing a market theme that is developed exclusively for trend bloggers.
Even though GeneratePress has gotten a lot simpler 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 need to go in and customize matters. And while the substantial advantage of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, some users, particularly casual users, don’t like having to make those changes .
GeneratePress Features That Make It Unique
Here Are some of the particular characteristics that explain why GeneratePress is so common.
Plenty Of Customization Options From The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Beyond Performance, another area where GeneratePress does well is its customization choices.
GeneratePress Utilizes the WordPress Customizer for customization, and this can be 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 decent options, but should you have GeneratePress Premium, you will be able to customize pretty much everything about your site.
For Example, if you go in the Layout area, you may configure detailed settings for yourown:
- Header — you can move your header around and alter its styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, such as sticky menus
- Sidebar layout — you can use a Couple of sidebars
- Blog post design — such as featured picture dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — like the number of widgets to add
Similarly, The Typography area enables you to control the font for every single element on your site, including buttons:
And You also receive a thorough region to control the colour of each and every element on your website.
All In all, GeneratePress will provide you a lot more customization choices in the WordPress Customizer than most other topics. This level of detail may be a little overwhelming if you’re a newcomer. But as soon as you understand the way the preferences come together, you’ll have complete control over how your site appears.
Optimized Performance And Fast Page Load Times
Around All of its features, GeneratePress always has a focus on exceptional performance and tidy code. The whole theme is less than 30 kB, which is about as little as you’ll ever find for a WordPress theme. Even most other optimized WordPress themes are still 200+ kB. And some badly coded themes can even surpass 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also does not have any code dependencies, which helps you avoid the render blocking error that Google Pagespeed Insights often cites.
Put That together, and you get a superfast-loading motif. How quickly? To give you a sense, I ran a little test.
First, I put up a vacant website using a random popular WordPress.org motif (Envo Magazine). After testing its performance with Pingdom, it:
- Had a performance tier of 77
- Loaded in 1.05 seconds
- Had a page size of 243.9 kB
- Had 15 requests
That is Not bad at all! However, GeneratePress can do better.
Next, I activated GeneratePress on exactly the exact same test website without changing anything else. Here’s how GeneratePress failed:
- Had a performance tier 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 that same test with different topics, you are going to continue to find that GeneratePress is among those fastest-loading WordPress themes in life. Top Free WordPress Themes 2016
Other Useful Premium Extensions, Plus Much Modular Approach
Beyond Giving you more style controls from the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium comes with a lot of other useful features such as:
- Elements — a exceptional feature that allows you create customized hooks, page headers, or layout templates.
- Page Header — lets you create a unique page header onto a per-page basis.
- Sections — that is kind of like lightweight page construction. It lets you create different”sections” on a webpage, each with their own design and column settings.
To Stay lightweight, GeneratePress also gives you a modular interface where you can select and choose what characteristics you would like to trigger.
That Way, you don’t have to slow down your site for a feature which you’ll never use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Website
In The last, you needed to construct GeneratePress sites from a blank canvas no matter what, which made the theme difficult for casual users to set up.
Earlier In 2018, though, the developer added a new Website Library feature for GeneratePress Premium users which lets you easily import any among those 25+ pre-built demo sites.
You Can import them right from your WordPress dashboard.
Yes — this Website still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click a couple buttons to import a presentation site.
Page-Level Settings Provide You Comprehensive Control Over Every Piece Of Content
With Most topics, each post and page will use the same configurations for the most part. You might have some custom templates or formats — but you don’t have very much control past that.
GeneratePress Changes that by giving you a brand new Design meta box for every single post and page:
You Can use this meta box to:
- Change how many sidebars your site uses, or the sidebar orientation (such as changing the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose the number of footer widgets to use
- Disable certain elements, like 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 are using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain components, you are in a position to produce the proper baseline for your page builder layout, making it easy to create custom articles as needed. Top Free WordPress Themes 2016
GeneratePress Pricing: Cheap And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Heart GeneratePress motif can be obtained at no cost at WordPress.org.
That said, If you are serious about using GeneratePress, I believe you should purchase the GeneratePress Premium plugin, as that is what makes the theme so elastic. The free version doesn’t give you nearly as numerous settings in the WordPress Customizer. And you will also miss out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium is also still quite reasonably priced. It costs only $39.95, which provides you use on unlimited sites. 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, of course, continue using GeneratePress after the first year without beating — you just won’t receive any more updates).
When You believe that the typical premium WordPress theme will usually cost around $60, GeneratePress provides a great value.
As I mentioned, I don’t think GeneratePress is for everyone.
If You desire a niche-specific motif, you can probably save time by buying a theme that fits your requirements for your niche from day one.
However, If you’re willing to spend time changing settings, GeneratePress’ mode controls give you the flexibility to turn it into any sort of WordPress site. Or, you may even have the ability to find a starter site that fulfills your needs to save some time.
Additionally, It’s among those fastest-loading WordPress themes you will find. Therefore, if you’re seeking the best performance possible, utilizing GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s foundation is a good decision.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, so you should have no problem making your site load in under one minute. Top Free WordPress Themes 2016