On Blogging
On Blogging

A metablog about blogging

October 2015
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How to choose a WordPress theme in 2015

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Choosing a theme for your blog is a very important decision. While the golden adage “don’t choose a book by a cover” is wise advice, most people will judge your blog by the first visual impression. Make sure you dress to impress.

A blog’s design affects more than just the aesthetic experience of blog reading. The layout, which is encoded in the theme through navigation, columns, and widgets, is centrally important to how your readers will be able to move through your site and read your best content. Choose wisely.

Now, a wordpress theme is never permanent. That’s the beauty of wordpress! You can change the theme at any time, however you will still need to tweak each theme’s particulars when you switch.

Changing your theme is a good way to freshen things up on your blog and inject new energy into your content. I recommend updating your theme every 2 years or so. Too frequent, and you will be sure to confuse your readers.

This article will discuss the process of selecting a theme for your site.

Where to browse themes?

The best place to get wordpress themes in on themeforest.net

Here you can find a plethora of premium wordpress themes to suit any niche. Whether you are setting up a business website, a fashion blog, or a mega-directory, there is a theme for you. Some themes also come with WooCommerce integration. This means you could even sell products on your blog using a digital shopping cart.

Pay attention to the ratings and the comments. Some themes have atrocious bugs and sloppy coding which will make it a headache to set up.

Browse through the themes. Each theme will have a demo that you can preview. The theme in the demo is setup with fake content so you can see what the theme can do and how it looks. Remember though: Most themes are extremely customizable so your site can look quite different from the demo, if you so choose.

The typical price of a good theme is about 50$ USD. Some themes come with preloaded settings or content which can make it very easy to get running.

Factors to consider when selecting your theme

You need to ask yourself these questions:

  1. Who is my target audience
  2. Background colors
  3. Accent colors
  4. Home page layout
  5. Typography
  6. Menus

Target audience

Take a look around at other blogs in your niche. If you write about bodybuilding (as I do on bodybuilderscience.com) you will see a distinct shared style between these blogs. The male “macho” demographic is not going to gravitate to pretty pink typography. All these sites typically have very bold fonts and dark color bases. Keep that in mind when selecting a theme.


Home page layout

This is very important because it is the front page of your blog and the gateway for people to find content to read. Layouts for blogs typically include some sort of sidebar for quick links, subscription and social media. The main area is usually split into columns containing 1 , 2 , or three posts per row. This will affect how people will see your content.

More minimalistic blogs, like this one and levels.io, stick to a journal like blog style. I personally use the Cedar Theme by Eckothemes for this blog and I find it really works. I am a sucker for gorgeous full width blog cover images



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