Introduction WordPress Custom Template
Within the past 10 years, I have used a lot of different WordPress topics and have been really disappointed. Up until recently, I had been utilizing MyThemeShop, which was pretty excellent. However, I still had to perform a lot of customization to allow it to perform and work 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 by far the finest WordPress theme I’ve found in a decade . I was dismissed and am now moving all of my sites to GeneratePress. I’ll enter precisely why in my comprehensive GeneratePress review under. And if you are wondering, yes I’ve tried Genesis, Astra, OceanWP, Avada, X motif, Divi as well as several other lightweight and heavier multicolored themes. WordPress Custom Template
GeneratePress is a totally free WordPress theme made by Tom Usborne, a developer from Canada. I have actually 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 lot of things on there is not that good, or not encouraged for long. Nonetheless, in this case, that was a mistake. The theme now has over half a million downloads, 80,000+ busy installs, with over 500 5-star evaluations. So clearly Tom is doing something right here.
I Actually 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 developer was thinking precisely how I was envisioning a theme should work. And I’ll go into that more below, but let’s first look at a number of the features. I’m going to be covering the premium edition of the theme, because it’s worth . Actually, Tom, if you ever read this and so are seeing Scottsdale, Arizona, coffees on me.
Super lightweight and fast. Modular design allowing you to enable/disable items you don’t want running. This is one of the greatest reasons I love GeneratePress.
Responsive, looks great across all devices.
Schema built-in, for better results in SERPs.
Dramatic integration with all the WordPress Customizer. I haven’t been a fan of this customizer in the past, but Tom does it correctly.
Compatible with popular plugins, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce, EDD, BuddyPress, bbPress, and WPML. Fantastic browser support back to IE8.
It also 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 individuals using Beaver Builder have experienced success.
Font awesome built-in.
A lot of hooks and filters that make it great for developers.
Great active support from the programmer. Normally, 3 updates per month.
The Documentation is also unbelievable. Besides have great documentation on their site, the subject has been around long enough that everything I Googled throughout the setup procedure was found inside a couple of seconds from their own forum.
Diving Into GeneratePress
Now it’s Time to the fun part! I test a brand new theme right from the box without any customizations to just see how quickly the foundation is. This tells me a lot of what I can 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 layout 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 loaded in GeneratePress is as small as possible. With HTTP/2, the amount of documents is not as important. But the size is! Take a peek at a few 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
This is a developer that cares about functionality! And I have Seen the same during each the premium add-ons. They’re literally as small as you can possibly get them. In reality, Font Awesome is most likely the biggest file included. And that isn’t even his. With Font Awesome 5 arriving round the cornerwe can anticipate this to get smaller also.
The premium add-ons Are installation in what I’d call a modular design. You can activate/deactivate whatever you are not using to ensure they don’t load on your website. Since the co-developer of this perfmatters plugin which has a script manager built, I felt right at home for this. Everything ought to be designed 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 I no more need to use a Child theme. This makes my life so much easier. No longer editing my functions.php or header.php files. I will literally upgrade my GeneratePress theme this very moment and not shed a single customization. The hooks add-on definitely can help make this possible. It permits you to incorporate custom code/PHP anywhere throughout your WordPress site. WordPress Custom Template
Other Things I Love About GeneratePress
On each Page/post that you have a lot of alternatives. You are able to alter the sidebar layout and the footer widgets.
You Can quickly swap a page involving the default option to a complete width page, as well as disable components.
The WordPress customizer options is where GeneratePress really shines! Bear in mind, a lot of these options are permitted by the superior add-ons. I can’t 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 suggest grabbing is the free Lightweight Grid Columns. Not to my surprise, this can be made by precisely the exact same developer as GeneratePress. It allows you a super simple way to add responsive columns to any page or article. Features include:
Desktop grid thickness
Tablet grid thickness
Mobile grid width
Insert Customized classes
Insert custom inline styles
Equal height columns
This is An example below:
You May Want to Also catch his amazing WP Show Posts plugin also. View 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 can also have 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 do all kinds of things in terms of design. Think of it like a page builder with no bloat. GeneratePress is certainly not only for blogs! I’m in fact using GeneratePress for our ecommerce site (perfmatters.io) which is operating Easy Digital Downloads. Don’t hesitate to check it out. But as you can see below, it looks like a site.
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 only took me about an hour to get GeneratePress to mimic my MyThemeShop theme which I had spent annually customizing. Here’s a comparison below.
woorkup.com Old MyThemeShop Theme
My older MyThemeShop motif was pretty quickly, but I invested a lot of time customizing it. In fact, I’ve 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
With the New GeneratePress theme I was able to attain faster speeds and 600 fewer lines of code! And remember, I don’t have a child motif. Each of the customizations were created using the awesome GP hooks and snippets plugin (both CSS and PHP).
Like the WordPress theme I’ve running on woorkup? You’re in luck. Tom asked if he can create a replica of woorkup for the new GeneratePress site library. I’m happy to allow you to know that you can now install my woorkup motif in your own GeneratePress website with just a click! It’s called the Marketer theme. Get started using a great blog layout instantly.
brianjackson.io Old Array Theme’s Theme
I also Moved over my personal site, brianjackson.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I was using a theme from Array Themes. It’s a fairly basic minimum website, since I do not use it to get much. As you can see it already loaded pretty fast.
brianjackson.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to duplicate the entire look 100% in GeneratePress in under one hour. And as you can view 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
I also Moved over our organization site, forgemedia.io, to GeneratePress. Previously I had been using a motif from Array Themes. It is a fairly basic minimum site, as we just use it for our LLC. As you can see it already loaded pretty quickly. WordPress Custom Template
forgemedia.io New GeneratePress Theme
I was Able to again move everything over and get it looking exactly how I wanted it in under one hour. And as you can see it loads even faster! Amazing. I was able to eliminate a total of four plugins and it dropped my total page burden 2x!
I can’t express my Excitement about locating GeneratePress and I’m moving over all my sites to it (which comprises several EDD e-commerce websites ). Once I have my 9 websites 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 right way, can actually perform quicker.
And The best thing isI finally have a thousand more options to choose from than I did earlier.
What GeneratePress Is Good For…
GeneratePress Is the ideal alternative for performance-focused users who want to have the ability to customize and control precisely how their site looks.
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 quickly.
Because Of that, those who assemble WordPress websites for a living love GeneratePress. They will typically pair it with a WordPress site builder and use it for literally any kind of website.
However GeneratePress Might Not Be A Fantastic Fit If…
…you Want something which will immediately appear perfect from the box.
For Example, if you realize you wish to produce a fashion blog, you may be happier choosing a niche theme that’s developed exclusively for fashion bloggers.
Even though GeneratePress is becoming a great deal easier to use, thanks to its pre-built Site Library, GeneratePress still looks very barebones if you first install it.
So To make GeneratePress look how you want it to, you will almost certainly need to go in and customize 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 themselves.
GeneratePress Features That Make It Unique
Here Are some of the particular characteristics that explain why GeneratePress is so popular.
Plenty Of Customization Options From The Real-Time WordPress Customizer
Beyond Functionality, another place where GeneratePress does well is its customization choices.
GeneratePress Utilizes the WordPress Customizer for customization, and this can be convenient because you will be able to see all the changes that you make in real time.
The Free version of GeneratePress gives you adequate options, but should you have GeneratePress Premium, you’ll be able to customize nearly everything about your website.
For Example, if you go into the Design area, you may configure detailed settings for your:
- Header — you can move your header around and change its styling
- Navigation — GeneratePress gives you two different navigation options, including sticky menus
- Sidebar layout — you can use one or two sidebars
- Blog post design — like featured image dimensions, metadata, etc..
- Footer layout — like how many widgets to add
Similarly, The Typography place lets you control the font for each and every 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 site.
All Whatsoever, GeneratePress will provide you much more customization choices from the WordPress Customizer than most other themes. This amount of detail may be a little overwhelming if you’re a beginner. But once you understand how the preferences come together, you’ll have full control on how your site appears.
Optimized Performance And Quick Page Load Times
Across All its attributes, GeneratePress always includes a focus on excellent performance and clean code. The whole motif is less than 30 kB, which will be 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 surpass 1 MB!
GeneratePress Also does not have any code dependencies, which will help you avoid the render obstructing error that Google Pagespeed Insights often cites.
Put That collectively, and you get a superfast-loading motif. How fast? To give you a sense, I conducted a small test.
First, I put up an empty website using a random popular WordPress.org theme (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 asks
That is Not bad at all! But GeneratePress can do better.
Next, I triggered GeneratePress on exactly the exact same test site without changing anything else. Here is how GeneratePress did:
- 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 requests, ~40% fewer
If You perform the exact same test with other themes, you’ll continue to find that GeneratePress is among those fastest-loading WordPress themes in life. WordPress Custom Template
Other Useful Premium Extensions, Plus Much Modular Approach
Beyond Giving you more style controls in the WordPress Customizer, GeneratePress Premium also comes with a lot of other useful features like:
- Elements — a unique feature that lets you create custom hooks, page headers, or layout templates.
- Page Header — allows you create a exceptional page header onto a per-page basis.
- Sections — that is kind of like lightweight page building. It lets you create separate”sections” onto a page, each with their own design and column settings.
To Remain lightweight, GeneratePress also gives you a modular interface where you could pick and choose what characteristics you would like to trigger.
That Way, you do not have to slow your site down for a feature which you’re never going to use.
Pre-Made Starter Sites Make It Easier To Design Your Site
In The last, you had to construct GeneratePress websites from a blank canvas no matter what, which made the motif difficult for casual users to install.
Earlier In 2018, though, the developer added a new Website Library feature for GeneratePress Premium users which allows you easily import any among the 25+ pre-built demo sites.
You Can import them directly from the WordPress dashboard.
Yes this Website still uses GeneratePress! All I did was click on a few buttons to import a presentation site.
Page-Level Settings Give You Comprehensive Control Over Each Piece Of Content
With Most topics, each post and page will use the same settings for the most part. You may have some custom formats or templates — but you do not have very much control beyond 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 how many sidebars your site uses, or the sidebar orientation (like changing the sidebar from right to left)
- Choose how many footer widgets to use
- Disable certain elements, such as your header, navigation menu, post featured image, post title, or footer
- Produce a special”container” to your page builder
Where These controls are the most useful is if you are using a WordPress site builder.
By Disabling certain components, you’re in a position to produce the proper baseline for your own page builder layout, which makes it easy to create custom content as needed. WordPress Custom Template
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 are seriously interested in 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 many settings from the WordPress Customizer. And you’ll also miss out on the premade Site Library.
GeneratePress Premium can be still quite 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 initial year (you can, of course, continue using GeneratePress after the initial year without renewing — you won’t get any more updates).
When You believe that the normal premium WordPress theme will often cost around $60, GeneratePress offers a fantastic value.
As I said, I do not believe GeneratePress is for everybody.
If You desire a niche-specific motif, you can probably save time by purchasing a theme that fits your requirements for your niche from day one.
However, If you are willing to spend some time changing preferences, then GeneratePress’ style controls give you the flexibility to flip it into any sort of WordPress website. Or, you may even be able to find a starter website that fits your needs to save a little time.
Additionally, It’s among the fastest-loading WordPress themes you will locate. So if you’re seeking the best performance possible, using GeneratePress as your WordPress site’s base is a good decision.
If You combine it with fast-loading hosting, so you should have no problem making your website load in under one second. WordPress Custom Template