Background Top Free WordPress Themes
Within the past 10 decades, I’ve used a lot of different WordPress themes and have been very disappointed. Up till recently, I had been utilizing MyThemeShop, which was pretty excellent. However, I still had to do a great deal of customization to allow it to perform and work how I wanted it to. A couple of weeks ago I decided to give GeneratePress a try, and let me just say, it is undoubtedly the best WordPress theme I’ve discovered in a decade . I was blown away and am now moving all of my sites to GeneratePress. I’ll enter precisely why in my in-depth GeneratePress review under. And if you are wondering, yes I’ve tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X theme, Divi as well as several other lightweight and thicker multicolored themes. Top Free WordPress Themes
GeneratePress is a totally free WordPress theme created by Tom Usborne, a programmer from Canada. I’ve really seen it for many years in the WordPress repository. Most of you know that I am fairly picky when it comes to web performance, and so I have a tendency to ignore everything in the repository. Typically because a great deal of things on there isn’t that great, or not encouraged for long. Nonetheless, in this case, that was a mistake. The motif currently has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ active matches, with over 500 5-star ratings. So clearly Tom is doing something right here.
I Actually set up 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 exactly how I was envisioning a theme should get the job done. And I will go into that more below, but let’s first look at a number of the features. I will be covering the superior edition of the subject, because it’s worth . Actually, Tom, if you read this and so are seeing 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 with all the WordPress Customizer. I haven’t been a lover of this customizer previously, but Tom does it correctly.
Compatible with all popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Fantastic browser service back to IE8.
It also works great with the favorite fast-growing Elementor page builder. If you want to dive into even more customizations, these are a great combo. I have also read that individuals using Beaver Builder have experienced success.
Font wonderful built in.
Tons of hooks and filters that make it great for developers.
Great active service from the developer. On average, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation is also incredible. Besides have good documentation on their site, the subject has been around long enough that everything I Googled during the setup procedure was found within a few seconds in their own forum.
Going Deep Into GeneratePress
Now it is Time for the fun part! I always 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 could expect by the time I add everything for this. Running the inventory GeneratePress WordPress theme on Kinsta hosting clocked in at a whopping 265 ms loading time. I was quite impressed.
One Thing I was concerned about with GeneratePress was that the modular design was going to produce a lot of big files, but this isn’t the case. You can tell that Tom actually worked hard on making sure every record loaded in GeneratePress is as little as possible. With HTTP/2, the amount of documents isn’t as significant. But the size is! Have a peek at some 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
That is a programmer that cares about performance! And I’ve Seen the same throughout all of the premium add-ons. They’re as small as possible get them. In fact, Font Awesome is most likely the biggest file contained. And that isn’t even his. With Font Awesome 5 coming around the corner, we can anticipate this to secure smaller also.
The premium add-ons Are setup 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 the perfmatters plugin which has a script manager built, I felt right at home with this. Everything ought to be made this way.
If You are curious, 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 have to use a young 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 and not shed a single customization. The hooks add-on certainly helps make it possible. It permits you to add custom code/PHP anywhere throughout your WordPress site. Top Free WordPress Themes
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On every Page/post you have a lot of alternatives. You can change the sidebar layout and the footer widgets.
You Can quickly swap a page involving the default option to a complete width page, in addition to disable elements.
The WordPress customizer choices is really where GeneratePress really shines! Bear in mind, a lot of these choices are enabled by the superior add-ons. I can not show you everything, otherwise, we would be here all day. But let me 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 is also made by precisely the exact same developer as GeneratePress. It enables you a super easy way to add responsive columns to any page or article. Characteristics include:
Desktop grid width
Tablet grid width
Mobile grid thickness
Add Customized courses
Insert custom inline designs
Equal height columns
This is An example below:
You May Want to Also catch his amazing WP Show Posts plugin too. See my featured posts on the sidebar of this website? That’s using the WP Display Posts plugin. I have it set to display 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 terrific.
The Segments add-in in the premium version of GeneratePress lets you do all sorts of things in terms of design. Consider it like a webpage builder with no bloat. GeneratePress is definitely not just for blogs! I’m in fact utilizing GeneratePress for our ecommerce website (perfmatters.io) that is running Easy Digital Downloads. Feel free to check it out. However, as you can see below, it looks nothing like a site.
For those Of those who are regular readers, you probably didn’t even notice I changed the entire motif that powers woorkup.com. It only took me about an hour to get GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop theme that I had spent a year customizing. Here is a comparison below.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My old MyThemeShop theme was pretty fast, but I invested a great deal of time scrutinizing it. In fact, I have gotten a lot of emails from you guys asking me to publish all my customizations. My advice now is, simply get GeneratePress!
woorkup.com New GeneratePress Theme
Together with the New GeneratePress theme I was able to attain faster speeds and 600 fewer lines of code! And keep in mind, I do not 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 can make a copy of woorkup for the new GeneratePress blog library. I am pleased to let you know that you can now install my woorkup theme on your own GeneratePress website with just a click! It is known as the Marketer motif. Get started with a fantastic blog design instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
I also Moved over my personal site, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a theme from Array Themes. It’s a fairly basic minimal website, since I do not use it for much. As you can see it loaded pretty quickly.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I had been Able to duplicate the entire look 100% in GeneratePress in under one hour. And since you can view it loads faster! Amazing. I was even able to eliminate a couple plugins which 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 was using a theme from Array Themes. It’s a pretty basic minimal site, as we simply use it for our LLC. Since you can see it already loaded pretty fast. Top Free WordPress Themes
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to again move everything over and get it looking exactly how I needed it in under an hour. And as you can view it loads faster! Amazing. I managed to get rid of a total of four plugins and it dropped my total page weight 2x!
I can not express my Excitement about finding GeneratePress and I am moving over all of my websites for this (which comprises some EDD e-commerce websites ). After I have my 9 sites all running in GP without any child themes, my entire life is going to be a breeze! The programmer has revived my faith in multi-purpose subjects , and that when done the correct way, can actually perform faster.
And The best news is, I now have a thousand more options to choose from than I did before.
What GeneratePress Is Great For…
GeneratePress Is the perfect alternative for performance-focused users who wish to have the ability to customize 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 fantastic base to make it load fast.
Since Of that, people who build WordPress sites for a living love GeneratePress. They will normally pair it with a WordPress site builder and use it for literally any type of website.
But GeneratePress Might Not Be A Fantastic Fit If…
…you Want something that will instantly look perfect from the box.
For Example, if you know you wish to create a style blog, you may be happier picking out a market theme that’s developed exclusively for trend bloggers.
Even though GeneratePress is becoming a lot easier to use, thanks to its pre-built Website Library, GeneratePress still looks very barebones if you first install it.
So To make GeneratePress look how you would like it to, you will most likely need to go in and customize things. And while the substantial benefit of GeneratePress is how customizable it is, some users, especially casual users, don’t like having to make those changes .
GeneratePress Features Which Make It Unique
Here Are some of the specific features that explain why GeneratePress is indeed common.
Plenty Of Customization Options From The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Beyond Functionality, another place where GeneratePress does well is its customization options.
GeneratePress Uses the WordPress Customizer for customization, which is convenient because you will have the ability to see all the changes that you make in real time.
The Free version of GeneratePress gives you decent options, but if you have GeneratePress Premium, you will have the ability to customize nearly all about your site.
For Example, if you go in the Layout region, you can configure comprehensive settings for your:
- Header — you can move your header round and alter its styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, including sticky menus
- Sidebar design — you can utilize a Couple of sidebars
- Blog post design — such as featured image size, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — like the number of widgets to add
Likewise, The Typography area enables you to control the font for every single element on your site, such as buttons:
And You also get a thorough area to control the colour of each and every element on your website.
All In all, GeneratePress will give you much more customization options from the WordPress Customizer compared to most other topics. This level of detail might be a bit overwhelming if you’re a beginner. But as soon as you realize how the settings come together, you will have full control on how your website appears.
Optimized Performance And Fast Page Load Times
Across All of its attributes, GeneratePress consistently has a focus on excellent performance and clean code. The entire motif is less than 30 kB, which will be about as little as you’ll ever find for a WordPress theme. Even most other optimized WordPress topics are still 200+ kB. And a few badly coded themes can even surpass 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also has no code dependencies, which will help you avoid the leave blocking error that Google Pagespeed Insights often mentions.
Put That together, and you get a superfast-loading motif. How fast? To give you a sense, I ran a little test.
First, I set up an empty website using a haphazard popular WordPress.org theme (Envo Magazine). After analyzing its functionality 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 is Not bad in any way! But GeneratePress can perform.
Next, I triggered GeneratePress on exactly the same test site without altering anything else. Here is 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 asks, ~40% fewer
If You do that same test with different topics, you are going to continue to find that GeneratePress is among the fastest-loading WordPress themes in existence. Top Free WordPress Themes
Other Helpful Premium Extensions, Plus A Modular Approach
Past Giving you more design controls from the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other useful features such as:
- Elements — a exceptional feature which allows you create customized hooks, page headers, or design 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 permits you to create separate”sections” onto a webpage, each with their own layout and column settings.
To Stay lightweight, GeneratePress also provides you a modular interface where you can pick and choose what characteristics you want to activate.
That Way, you don’t need to slow down your site for a quality that you’ll never use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Website
In The last, you needed to build GeneratePress sites from a blank canvas regardless of what, which made the motif difficult for casual users to set up.
Earlier In 2018, however, the programmer 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 the WordPress dashboard.
Yes — this Website still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click a few buttons to import a demo site.
Page-Level Settings Provide You Detailed Control Over Every Piece Of Content
With Most topics, each page and post will use the same settings for the most part. You may have some custom templates or formats — however you do not have very much control beyond that.
GeneratePress Changes that by providing you a brand new Design meta name box for each and every post and page:
You Can utilize this meta box to:
- Change how many sidebars your site 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 picture, post title, or footer
- Create a special”container” for your page builder
Where These controls are the most helpful is if you’re using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain elements, you are able to create the correct baseline for your page builder design, making it easy to create custom content as needed. Top Free WordPress Themes
GeneratePress Pricing: Cheap And Works On Unlimited Sites
The Core GeneratePress theme can be obtained for free at WordPress.org.
Nevertheless, If you’re seriously interested in 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 almost as numerous configurations from the WordPress Customizer. And you’ll also miss out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium is also still quite reasonably priced. It costs only $39.95, which gives you use on unlimited websites . You will also get a 40% discount if you want to renew to keep on receiving support and updates following the first year (you can, obviously, keep using GeneratePress following the initial year without beating — you just won’t receive any more upgrades ).
When You believe that the normal premium WordPress theme will usually cost around $60, GeneratePress provides a fantastic value.
As I mentioned, I don’t believe GeneratePress is for everyone.
If You want a niche-specific motif, you can probably save time by buying a theme that satisfies your requirements for your niche from day one.
But If you are ready to spend some time changing preferences, then GeneratePress’ style controls give you the flexibility to flip it into any type of WordPress website. Or, you might even have the ability to locate a starter site that fits your needs to save some time.
Additionally, It is among those fastest-loading WordPress themes that you will find. Therefore, if you’re looking for the best performance possible, using GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s base is a great choice.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, so you shouldn’t have any difficulty making your website load in under one second. Top Free WordPress Themes