Choosing A WordPress Theme: A Definite Guide for Beginners

How to Choose a WordPress Theme

One of the biggest challange for any level of blogger is to choose a WordPress theme for their blog. When I started blogging, I used to change blog theme every now & then which was really bad for branding as well as good user experience. None the less, I wasted countless hours configuring the theme, adding ads & eventually ended up replacing it with another theme.

If you are also experiencing something similar, I suggest spend quality time hunting the theme which fits your blog & your style, & focus on what you are best at; i.e writing.

The design of your blog matters a lot for branding and a good user experience. If you will notice, all popular WordPress blogs or Websites around, take good care of their blog theme. There are many free and Premium theme clubs out there, and you will be bombarded with 1000’s of options for a WordPress theme. Some of them will be free, and many of them will be premium.

When you are finding a WordPress theme for your blog, along with the look and design, you should focus on many other aspects like the support, upgrade and many more.

Here I will be sharing few things that you should consider before buying a WordPress theme. You can always go for a free theme, but I have already mentioned how premium themes are better than free themes, and why you should not download free premium WordPress themes. At this moment, my favorite theme framework is Genesis, and if you have a budget issue, I would recommend you to look at Elegant Themes.

How to Choose a WordPress Theme

Matches your blog type

The very first criteria you should consider is the type of your blog. If you have a tech blog, look for tech blog themes. If you have a fashion blog, look for fashion blog themes. This helps you to narrow down your search & you end up picking the theme which matches your blog type & will be liked by your readers.

Believe or not but first impression is always based on looks. Before reading articles, the visitor will first notice the theme of your WordPress blog. Thus, it is important that you select your theme according to your niche. If your blog is about blogging tips, technology, make money online then prefer to select a professional theme, and if you have a personal or fun blog then you can go for a funky theme. Make sure that the theme colors should not be discomforting to the eyes..

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Good navigation

Themes are available in different layouts, number of columns but the select theme that provides an easy navigation. Visitors should find it easy to navigate, subscribe to your blog and find it easy to search articles they are interested in. A theme with good navigation always helps you to reduce bounce rate.

Easy Customization

WordPress theme should be easy to customize. There are many customizable themes available which are easy to modify according to your requirements and you even don’t have to learn the lot of PHP coding or CSS for same. Even if you are not a genius in customizing theme then also you can play with themes if the theme provides you easy customization.

Advanced features

There are many themes that provide you useful features like managing advertisings, different comment styles, customize dashboard, customized error pages, built-in plugins or different options to promote your post via social networking websites. Such features are available in free as well as in premium themes, you can select one that suits your requirements. You can always achieve many of these tasks with the help of WordPress plugins. So, you may ignore this particular features.


Always prefer to have a theme by a developer who is active when it comes to the support part. Make sure that developer update the theme on the regular basis according to WordPress latest version and it must support the new features of updated version like widgets, tags, etc.

SEO features

This is again something that you should decide if you want your theme to control your SEO, or you want a WordPress plugin to take care of SEO. Personally, here at ShoutMeLoud, we use Thesis to control SEO, but now we are making a shift to Genesis  theme; we are moving data to WordPress SEO by Yoast. According to my opinion, it’s better to let a plugin control your SEO, instead of a theme. There are few more features that you should consider like loading time, responsive theme, support for child themes.

Responsive & mobile friendly

I saved the best reason for last & in 2015 & in coming years, don’t buy a WordPress theme if it’s not responsive. A Responsive theme will ensure your content is readable on all screen size (Mobile, tablets or desktop). This is one of those features that you can’t compromise with & good news is; all the modern WordPress theme are responsive.

To make your WordPress theme selection process easier, our team have done the research to find the best WordPress themes in various niches.

No matter you select a free or premium WordPress theme but make sure that you go for the best theme. What are your criteria to select WordPress theme for your blog? Do share with us.

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Article By
Harsh Agrawal is a blog scientist and a passionate blogger. He is blogging since 2008 & writes about Blogging, SEO, Make money online & tech. His blog, ShoutMeLoud receives 1 million Pageviews/month and have over 700K subscribers.


COMMENTs ( 23 )

  1. says

    Hello Harsh Today i purchased Genesis Framework under your affiliate Link :D , hope it tracked under you .
    I have a doubt that “for how many domains can i use the Genesis Framework” ,only one or more ?if more then it will be great.Waiting for your reply…………..

  2. says

    Harsh ,
    in this post you said you will change to Genesis,but currently your theme Thesis framework,as there is no dates for this post ,is the the new post ,why you not changed to Genesis,please reply

  3. says

    Great post you really mentioned all the basic things to consider in a theme and for me what i like to have in a theme is good content font size and simplicity, i don’t even like too much designed site i love it when it’s looks simple and easy navigated.

    • says

      I agree with your point on “Good content font and simplicity”.. The purpose of a theme is to first focus on readability and good user-expereince in the form of speed and navigation… Once that is there, rest a good eye-catching design will be like icing on the cake…

  4. Sagar nandwani says

    I will definitely keep all these points in my mind for new theme selection for my upcoming blogs. Thanks for your guide.

  5. says

    I tried to find a theme that uses feature slide and often ignore the seo things inside the theme. Thanks to this post for making me realize and I already changed my theme from arras to swift

  6. Vincent Chow says

    I would also consider the uniqueness of the theme. There are quite a number of blog that has the exact look and feel of SML, with just a different logo.

  7. Jojo Mathews @Around Social says

    Nice Tips, one important thing to add, check the theme first with plugins like wp antivirus, because there is so much infected themes available today…

  8. Vuong says

    I think Thesis and Genesis are two the best choice for bloggers when they help us SEO better than any else. Of course these two themes is not best as you might think at the first look. I have ever wondered why tons of blogger are passionate with them.

    PS: When will my comment be approved automatically Whiztechy ? I hate that manual approval!

    • says

      Thesis is all time best because it provides you lots of features and it’s easy to customize. If anyone is a professional blogger than it is always recommended to use a Thesis theme.
      And about commenting part Voung, it’s quite tough be even few regular commentators do spamming and which is not acceptable thus we prefer to moderated comments manually.

  9. sumanth says

    nice tips..but it would be a bettr post if you have given the best themes under every section i.e. like some themes having good navigation etc. anyway useful info..

  10. Vivek Parmar says

    selecting a theme is always a though decision.
    for me a theme should have good typography, nice looking navigation, support and easy to customize like thesis or genesis
    thanks for offering such great tutorials on thesis.
    could i expect some more tutorials on thesis like
    > adding tabbed widgets in sidebar
    > how to create static site using wordpress conditional tags (liek wpfreesetup and thesiscustomizationservice)

    • says

      Thanks for your comment Vivek. I agree with Typography, it is one of the important factor to consider while selecting a WP theme. Typography should be look professional. And we will surely come up with more tutorials soon.