So, you opted for WordPress as the platform of choice for your site? That’s amazing, and the best part is that it can indeed offer you some rather distinct and unique results. But when it comes to finding the perfect WordPress Theme for your website, the process can become a pain. With that in mind, we created a list of things you have to focus on when selecting a good WordPress theme.

Select a WordPress Theme that suits your niche

The good idea is to find themes suitable for your particular niche. Most WordPress Themes are known to be multi-purpose, but this will not help you stand out. Pick a theme that was created specifically for your niche, as that will make the entire process a lot easier. Plus, using such a theme will bring you a much better user experience.

Theme loading speed

More than 50% of users tend to close the browser tab when a website is loading slow. An important step is to take care about how fast is loading the website where demo theme is installed. There are a lot of factors to take into consideration (server location, how many plugins are installed and so on), but you can use free tools to get a speed report. Here are some of them:

SEO friendliness

We know that WordPress is built to be SEO friendly, but you have to be sure that the theme you want to opt for is built with SEO in mind and comes with SEO support. You want to rank high in search engine results, so getting this type of support can help you a lot. Try to use this to your advantage and get the ultimate outcome. As a starting point, you can check if images have the “alt” attribute. If not, I suggest you to not loose time with this theme and move to next one from your list. Why? Because this is the 1st thing and easiest one to take care when building a theme; if devs don’t take care of “alt” attributes, they don’t take care of SEO at all.

Theme updates frequency

When checking a theme, you definitely should take a look when it was last time updated. A theme with regular updates is a good choice as this means it’s compatible with the latest WordPress version, all vulnerabilities are fixed and also you’ll receive a theme with fewer bugs.

Is it responsive or not?

It’s almost 2018 outside and theme responsiveness is not optionally anymore. According to StatCounter, in last 12 months (Sept 16 – Sept 17) 52.29% of the Worldwide Market Share is represented by mobile devices and 43.29% by desktop devices. Responsive themes are mandatory nowadays, as there are hundreds of device resolutions to cover. So yes, if you want to offer a native browsing experience for everyone, then using responsive WordPress Theme is a must!

WordPress Theme: How to choose the perfect one? - Mobile vs Desktop vs Tablet

Mobile vs Desktop vs Tablet / Sept 2016 – Sept 2017 / Source

Check the WordPress Theme’s rating

The theme rating is a good indicator of how impressive that theme is. Some themes are very good, others not so much. With this rating, you get to see how good those themes really are, and in the end, you will know what themes are not worth your time. The perfect rating for a theme is maximum (usually 5 stars), but if there are 4 or 2 stars ratings, then you should check them and see why customers rated the theme in this way and if theme creators have some reaction to these ratings (for example, after a while they came up with an update to fix the customers issues, or did they improved something). If there is no reaction from theme owner, then maybe you’ll want to skip this theme. This means (of course, not in all cases) that he doesn’t care about customer feedback.

Author feedback

As I said before, it’s important to check how theme author reacts to customer feedback. It’s the best way to identify whether that author is a known theme creator or a new one. If there are more items developed by this author, then you have to check the rating, feedback and author feedback for all of them. If the theme has the comments section (as on ThemeForest), then I suggest you to check the response time and how useful are author comments. If an author has only one theme for sale, then you can try to contact him before and ask some presale questions. It’s important to take into consideration the response time and how helpful was his reply.

Browser support

Some themes don’t support all browsers. So, you want to make sure that you can find a theme which delivers the type of support that you need. It will surely be a good idea, and it will pay off well if you opt for a theme that supports just about all browsers out there.

Refund policy

Let’s face it: sometimes you think you found a gem and purchased it. But after you’ve tried it, it’s not exactly what you’ve expected. This is why you should take into consideration the author’s refund policy: if it’s not accepting refunds, then you probably should skip this one. For example, Pixolette’s refund policy is 15 days money back guarantee with no questions asked for all products.

Translation/multilingual support

There are times when you want to address to a global audience. Your primary focus in this situation has to be on multilingual capabilities. Some WordPress themes include this sort of features; others don’t do such a thing. Try to focus on that, and the results can be more than ok in the end.

Final thoughts about choosing the WordPress Theme

In the end, these are some of the best things to keep in mind if you want to find the right WordPress theme for your site:

  1. Select a WordPress Theme that suits your website niche
  2. Check the theme loading speed
  3. Is it SEO friendly?
  4. Check how often is the theme updated
  5. The WordPress Theme should be responsive. No compromises here.
  6. Check the theme’s rating
  7. Check the author feedback and support
  8. Theme should be compatible with all browsers
  9. Check the author’s Refund Policy
  10. Is theme translatable?

Trying multiple WordPress Themes is a very good idea; take your time, study all the options, and choose the one that is a perfect fit for your website.

Ion Vrinceanu Developer with 6+ years experience. Lead developer & Co-Founder @ Pixolette.

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