Your website is in trusted hands with WordPress at its aid. WordPress is full of incredible themes, plugins, and add-ons to maximise your website’s potential. With all that there is to offer, it can get overwhelming when it comes to making the right choices for your website.
Our steps on how to choose a WordPress theme revolve around one thing: your audience. You see, your theme has the power to either attract and engage users or have them clicking out of your website in seconds. The latter is what we want to avoid. You should strive to delight customers at every touch point they have with your brand and your website is the most important one!
So, what goes behind choosing an effective WordPress theme? It only takes 7 steps.
How to Choose a WordPress Theme in 7 Steps
Step One: Look at Your Website’s Content
Before even looking at potential themes, you should make a list of all the different features your website needs. Not all themes are made equal, and not all of them have the same capabilities.
Start by making a list of your essentials. What can your site not do without? What will your audience noticeably miss? Once you have your can’t-do-withouts, you can start to narrow down your theme choices.
Another point to keep in mind is that some WordPress themes work best for different purposes. It is up to you to decide if the content on your website is going to be made up of simple blog posts, videos, only images or all of the above. Your theme may work best with only one of these components or none at all. The last thing you’d want to present to your audience is a bug-riddled webpage!
Step Two: Consider the Supported Plugins and Widgets
One of the wonderful benefits that come with a WordPress website is the copious amounts of plugins. There’s essentially a plugin for everything! However, just because there are thousands of plugins, doesn’t mean that your theme supports all of them.
Take the time to read through your theme choices and see if they are at least compatible with the main plugins you’re after. Plugins like Yoast SEO and WPForms come highly recommend and your theme should support these.
The same goes for certain widgets on your website. Widgets that allow you to share your social media channels are a must. By providing users with your social media links, you’re encouraging them to interact with your brand at another touch point. Therefore, you are giving them another opportunity to learn more about your brand and start building that potential relationship.
Step Three: Remember these Key Factors for SEO
Whether or not your website becomes a successful lead magnet is largely determined by how optimised your content is for SEO. After all, search engines have a large amount of power when it comes to directing traffic to your website.
So, what does this mean for your theme? Your theme should either be equipped with or is adaptable to these following SEO factors:
- It’s user-friendly
Not only does having a user-friendly website bode well for SEO but it’s a key ingredient to how you delight your audience. Your audience should be able to easily navigate their way around your website to get to the answers they need.
- It supports a fast loading speed time
In 2019, SEO is all about optimising the user experience and your website’s load speed time is essential. Having a densely coded theme will slow down this process and could lead to SEO penalties. Try and keep your theme as simple as possible to boost its loading speed and keep your audience happy.
- It has responsive design capabilities
We’ve seen a dramatic shift from desktop to mobile over the past few years and your website should cater to these trends. To increase your SEO ranking and thrill your audience, a responsive design allows for content to be adjusted so that it’s best suited to different devices.
Step Four: Analyse the Theme’s Level of Usability
As we’ve mentioned, every theme is different and has various levels of usability. Some themes are created with page builders and coding, while others may just be compatible with coding. Most premium themes will come with page builders installed, however, we would recommend that you spend some time researching its pre-installed plugins.
Some page builders can lead to a buggy customer experience and result in extra time cleaning up the code. On the other hand, some may be exactly what you’re after and come highly trusted. Going with a theme that works with your skill level and usage needs is key.
Step Five: Stay Within Budget
Your budget plays a large role in how to choose your WordPress theme. Remember, you may have set aside a budget for your theme but some plugins, widgets and added extras may come at an extra cost.
You wouldn’t want to go spending your entire budget on a theme that you won’t be able to fully utilise! An unfinished website isn’t exactly appealing to your audience either.
Step Six: Judge its Customisability
Last, but not least, your WordPress theme should be customisable. As your website is an extension of your brand, you should be able to mirror the suitable fonts, colours, and images that are associated with your business. This will drive strong brand recognition and show your audience that they’re in the right place.
Your website should also be customisable to suit different languages. To cater to your multilingual audience, choose a theme that has is translation ready or that supports the necessary plugin.
Step Seven: Remember that Appearance is Everything
After all of these steps, you may find a theme that checks all of the boxes but something’s missing. The most important step in choosing your theme is you must like it! It must fit into how you’ve envisioned your website and how you’d like to delight your audience.
With these seven steps, how to choose a WordPress theme has never been so easy! If you follow these recommendations, your audience will be hooked in seconds.