WordPress gives you plenty of themes to choose from, but which is the best for a small business like yours? Ultimately, choosing a WordPress theme is a decision that should be based on things like your target audience, business type, business goals, and similar considerations. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t narrow your choices down a bit with a guide like this one!
This article will help you to choose a WordPress theme for your small business. By the end, you should know the main questions to ask when choosing a WordPress theme and what to look for in your search.
Recommended: Get the best WordPress themes with an Envato subscription. Try a free trial today!
Choosing a WordPress Theme
With so many themes to choose from, it’s helpful to give yourself a starting point. Knowing the features that you want before you start your search helps. That way, you aren’t grasping around blindly and hoping for the best.
This how-to guide looks at the most common questions people ask about choosing a WordPress theme. It also gives you recommendations for five great themes that we think could be the perfect fit for your needs.
Common Questions When Choosing a WordPress Theme
Here are some of the main questions we are asked about choosing a WordPress theme. Read on to learn how to go through your search and increase your odds of success.
What’s the Website’s Main Goal?
Before you start your journey, it’s a good idea to settle on your destination. Your website needs to have a primary goal that you can aim for with your WordPress theme. Consider the following questions:
- Will your website sell a product or service?
- Will the website primarily serve as a blog?
- Will the website serve as an online store to earn a profit or as a charity or other type of organization?
- What is the target market or audience for the website?
WordPress has a “Feature Filter” tool that you can use to filter themes based on subjects and layouts. Layouts include left or right sidebars, grids, wide blocks, and one to four columns.
Industries include ecommerce, entertainment, holidays, blogging, news, and food and drink.
When you know your website’s main goal, you can use the filtering process to narrow down theme options based on that goal.
What Plugins and Features Are Needed for my WordPress Theme?
Every good website is customized to the needs of its audience. Plugins and features make it possible to improve the functionality of your website in specific ways, without the need to do the programming yourself. Custom elements can also help make your website more interactive and coherent.
The appearance of your website is influenced by many different visual elements, including color scheme, menus, images, logos, headers and footers, written content, opt-in forms, fonts, columns, and more.
Page builders are one type of tool that can help you customize your website. They are drag-and-drop, which means anyone can use them. Plugins like Elementor, WPBakery, and Beaver Builder are all page-builder plugins. They let you build a site block by block using different templates, such as a homepage template or a contact page template.
The Elementor page builder plugin includes over 100 widgets, a pop-up builder, a form builder, an online store set up via WooCommerce, and many other features.
The WPBakery website builder can be used with any theme and gives you access to templates, search engine optimization (SEO) enhancements, and more than 200 add-ons.
The Beaver Builder plugin lets you build as many sites as you want and includes modules, templates, and customer support for a year.
Our Favorite: Envato Elements
Of all the page builders to choose from, our favorite is Envato. It is surprisingly affordable and gives you access to tens of thousands of templates. Whatever your business goals, Envato is likely to have a theme and other features that will help you reach that goal.
Is the WordPress Theme SEO-ready?
You want your website to get noticed and SEO will help with that. That’s why you want a theme that is focused on SEO. By using specific keywords on your website, like in your content and on your pages, you can improve your rankings on search engines like Google. The higher up in the search engine results your site is, the more likely searchers are to click on your site.
Is it a Responsive WordPress Theme?
Your website visitors may find you on a desktop, laptop, tablet, smartphone, or other devices. To ensure your pages appear correctly, your theme needs to be responsive. Responsive themes change the layout of the pages based on the device being used.
Given that the majority of online traffic happens on mobile devices, a responsive theme is a necessity today.
Is It a Free or Premium WordPress Theme?
There are plenty of free themes out there. WordPress lets you use hundreds without paying a penny. Those free options are fine for experimenting with building a website or blog. But free themes are usually pretty basic. They can lack support if you run into problems and they might not get regularly updated to keep them running correctly.
Premium WordPress themes cost money. The cost of a premium WordPress theme is set by the developer and can vary based on features, design, license, and more. Premium themes often have more features and customization options than free WordPress themes. They come with support so you can get questions answered if you have a problem with the theme. These themes are updated more regularly and are usually more customizable.
Many website owners start off with free WordPress themes. But most of the time, if you are planning on using the website for a business, free themes won’t cut it over the long term. You need reliability and customizability, which you get a lot more of from premium themes.
What Are the Ratings and Reviews?
Many WordPress themes will have ratings and/or reviews from other users. If you can find reviews of a theme you are interested in, definitely check them out. They will help you discover the pros and cons of the theme and how well that theme works for most users.
If a theme has no reviews, it’s probably best to pick another one. Unless you just have free time and want to experiment, a well-reviewed theme is the better option.
When Was the WordPress Theme Last Updated?
The internet is changing all of the time. For a theme to work correctly and to integrate with other current software and hardware, it needs to be updated regularly. Choosing a theme that has been updated within the last six months reduces the possibily of compatibility issues with plugins and security risks.
Themes without recent updates could be discarded by their creators. They might not work correctly. Even if they seem to work fine now, there’s a good chance that your theme will have issues as plugins and the core WordPress software updates.
Is the WordPress Theme Secure?
Security is important for themes. WordPress is open-source and is vulnerable to cyberattacks. A secure WordPress theme will be less likely to succumb to such attacks. That security protects your business, clients, and customers.
One useful tool to check the security of themes is the Theme Check plugin. This plugin does a quick scan of your currently installed theme to ensure that it is up-to-date, free of backdoors and vulnerabilities, and meets WordPress security standards. You can find this and other free security plugins in the WordPress Repository.
What to Avoid When Choosing a WordPress Theme
Consider the following to avoid choosing a theme that could prove problematic.
Busy or Cluttered Themes
If you look at most successful websites, they tend to be uncluttered and simple to grasp visually. WordPress themes that are overly busy with numerous features not only appear untidy but can also chase visitors away. They may find the site confusing if there are too many visual elements. Also, the more things happening on the page, the slower it is likely to load. That impacts your SEO and drives away visitors.
Look for a clean WordPress theme with only the features that you need for functionality and to achieve your site goals.
With thousands of fonts to choose from, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. But you need the right font to communicate clearly and keep visitors around. As a rule of thumb, go for a font that everyone can read easily and one that is used on plenty of other websites. Fancy, elaborate, or weird fonts can make your website appear less professional and frustrate readers.
Themes From Outside Sources or Untrusted Sites
For free themes, stick with themes from WordPress.org, Elegant Themes, or WooThemes. Themes from unknown or untrusted sources can present security vulnerabilities. The wrong theme could leave you exposed to cyberattacks.
5 Popular WordPress Themes
Here are five popular WordPress themes from Envato for your consideration.
Blogosphere — Multipurpose Blogging Theme
Blogosphere is a popular WordPress theme for bloggers. Whatever kind of blog you want to write, this theme will fit your needs. It includes a variety of style layouts, like standard blog, grid, and timeline, that allow you to customize the appearance based on your subjects. It also has a fully-integrated WooCommerce shop so you can start selling products right away.
This tool will let you create any type of blog you can think of, including fashion, food, travel, lifestyle, and more. It also comes with post formats, so you can write and leave the layout design to the theme. Slider plugins are also included, so you can create sliders for free.
Zox News — Professional WordPress News & Magazine
The Zox News theme is ideal for creating your own news or magazine WordPress website. It includes eight article layouts and five featured post layouts, giving you plenty of design options to keep things fresh.
This theme is set up for you to publish all types of content, including text, video, and images. It integrates with YouTube, Vimeo, and SoundCloud. And the theme is also prepped for ecommerce, so you can start selling products if it’s part of your business model.
Zox News is also prepped for translation with .po/.mo files, so you can translate your articles for different audiences as necessary.
Rekon — Construction WordPress Theme
The Rekon theme is ideal for construction and architecture businesses. It has a simple, elegant layout that reflects a contemporary design. With five different homepage layouts, you can customize it to suit your specific visual preferences based on your business.
This responsive WordPress theme is designed to look great on any device. Home computers, laptops, smartphones, tablets, whatever the device, Rekon will rearrange elements to ensure an ideal user experience.
The theme is powered by Redux, which gives you access to unlimited color and Google Fonts options. This gives you the ability to customize the theme as much as you like.
Tevily — Travel & Tour Booking WordPress Theme
The Tevily theme is made to let you show off your tours in style. It’s designed for travel businesses like agencies, tour operators, and holiday booking companies. You can set it up to sell day tours, tour packages, hiking and camping, cruise packages, vacations, and more. And it starts you off with four different homepage demos, so you don’t have to create your website design from scratch.
The theme includes a calendar for booking clients and page layouts meant to show off travel destinations. It also gives you pages for comments and ratings, an important feature for this business sector. Like many other Envato themes, it also comes equipped with WooCommerce so you can set up shop as soon as you go live.
Meni — Healthcare Medical Doctor Theme
The Meni theme gives you a robust platform to build a medical services website. The layouts let you display your services in a stylish, attractive way without sacrificing professionalism. Patients can schedule appointments through the website as well.
The Meni theme allows you to design your medical services pages using page templates as a starting point, so you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. You can drag and drop features that you like to customize each page according to what your business offers.
This theme includes Slider Revolution, a plugin that simplifies creating sliding visuals and text. You can create animations that shift from image to image so visitors see everything you have to offer in a short period of time.
WordPress is the top content management platform in the world. It offers hundreds of free and premium themes to choose from, and that’s just what is on WordPress. Look a little further at services like Envato and you will find even more theme options.
Now that you know the basics of choosing a WordPress theme, you can move forward with your search to find the perfect theme. Use the information above to clarify what you need from a theme and to ensure the theme you choose helps you achieve your business goals.
We encourage you to check out Envato today and try out one of the themes we recommend here. It’s a great resource for high-quality WordPress themes that you can depend on.