WordPress Themes: The Complete Guide for Beginners

After the WordPress installation is complete, there are several things you must do, including choosing a theme that matches your website. In this article you will learn about WordPress themes, how to install them and customize them to suit your needs.

Table of Contents

What Is WordPress Theme?

The WordPress theme is the WordPress component that is responsible for changing the appearance or layout of the website to make it better. Installing a WordPress theme is necessary if the standard theme provided by WordPress does not suit your needs.

Themes can be likened to clothes. Whether a person looks good or not, one of them is influenced by the clothes he wears. Likewise with websites, the appearance of websites created using WordPress depends on the theme used.

When the WordPress installation process is complete, the active theme is automatically the default theme from WordPress, for example Twenty Twenty-Three on WordPress 6.1. This theme looks like the image below.

If you don’t like the look of the theme, you can change the theme by installing a new theme.

Multipurpose vs Niche Theme

Based on its usability, there are two categories of WordPress themes, namely multipurpose and niche themes.

a) Multipurpose WordPress Theme

divi wordpress theme

WordPress themes in this category can be used for any type of website. All the features that your website might need are usually all available in full and you just have to use them.

One of the advantages of this theme is that with only one theme you can use it for various purposes. If you intend to create multiple websites with WordPress, this theme is perfect. You only need to choose a good theme and you can use it on all of these websites.

The examples of multipurpose WordPress themes are Divi, Avada and Astra.

b) Niche WordPress Theme

hot coffee wordpress theme

WordPress themes in this category are made for special purposes, for example for schools, charity projects, churches, weddings and so on. Usually the features in the theme are not many and are only suitable for certain types of websites.

The following are some examples of niche WordPress themes:

WordPress ThemePriceWebsite Type
ProGuards$69Security Services
Corbesier$69Design interior
Hot Coffee$69Coffee Shop

Free vs Premium Theme

avada wordpress theme

Based on the cost you have to pay to get it, there are two categories of WordPress themes, namely Free and Premium.

You can download the free WordPress theme for free. There are thousands of free themes that you can try. If your budget is very limited, a free theme is the right choice. An example of a website that provides free themes is WordPress.org Theme Directory.

Unlike free WordPress themes that you can get for free, premium WordPress themes are paid themes. You have to buy the theme if you want to use it.

If you can get it for free, why should you pay? Maybe that’s what’s on your mind.

So what’s the difference between Free and Premium Themes?

Here are some of the main differences between free and premium themes.

Free WordPress ThemePremium WordPress Theme
Can be obtained for free.You have to buy the theme.
Very limited features.Has more complete features and continues to be developed.
Usually it is rarely updated and sometimes it becomes problematic if there is the latest update on WordPress.Frequently updated and theme creators always make sure the theme runs on the latest version of WordPress.
Very minimal support service.Have a reliable support service. You can ask at any time if there are difficulties or conflicts with other plugins in using paid themes.

Here are some examples of premium WordPress themes:

WordPress ThemePriceCategory

Where Can You Find Quality WordPress Themes?

There are many good quality WordPress themes that you can use on your website. The question is, where can you find the theme?

Each WordPress theme usually offers a unique design and features that set it apart from other themes. You can start searching for the right theme based on the needs of your website.

If your budget is limited enough, you can consider a free theme. There are many free themes that you can choose from, both multipurpose and niche themes.

However, if there are no free themes that match the needs of your website, then consider using a premium theme.

Here are some websites that provide good quality themes:

a) WordPress.org Theme Directory

wordpress theme directory

If you want to find free themes then WordPress.org Theme Directory is the best place. With thousands of themes, you could say the WordPress.org Theme Directory is the largest free theme provider site on the market.

The advantage of using themes from the WordPress.org Theme Directory is that they have passed a very thorough review process. That means the theme that passes and is published on the website is the chosen theme with good quality.

Here are the 10 most popular themes in the WordPress.org Theme Directory:

WordPress ThemeCategory
Hello ElementorMultipurpose
StorefrontOnline Store

b) Themeforest

themeforest marketplace

Currently, you could say Themeforest is the most popular marketplace site that provides premium themes. You can find a variety of themes at low prices on the marketplace site.

There are more than 11 thousand themes that you can choose on Themeforest with unique designs and attractive features. Each theme has been grouped according to a certain category so you can find the theme you need easily.

Here are the top 10 best-selling themes of all time on Themeforest:

WordPress ThemePriceCategory
X | The theme$59Multipurpose

c) Elegant Themes

elegan themes divi

Elegant Themes is a well-known website that sells Divi, one of the most popular premium WordPress themes on the market. Divi is a WordPress theme with a multipurpose category, which means it can be used for various types of websites.

Divi comes with the Divi Builder, a page builder with a drag and drop feature that you can use to design unique website pages without having any technical knowledge.

d) Astra


Astra is one of the most popular free themes in the WordPress.org Theme Directory. This theme has a lightweight code structure and is equipped with various easy-to-use features.

Astra is designed to be compatible with popular page builders (such as Elementor, Beaver Builder and Divi Builder), various online marketing tools and some popular plugins.

Astra is also a “freemium” theme, which means it is available in two versions, free and premium. The premium version is offered at a starting price of $59 and is equipped with far more complete features than the free version.

e) CSSIgniter

cssigniter wordpress marketplace

CSSIgniter offers a large collection of premium WordPress themes for various types of websites such as restaurants, hotels, magazines and businesses. There are more than 60 themes that you can choose from and all of them are accompanied by complete documentation that will make it easier for you to use the theme.

CSSIgniter sells premium themes starting at $49 per year. You can also get the entire theme collection with lifetime support and updates for $249.

f) Themify

themify wordpress marketplace

Themify not only offers premium themes but also premium plugins. Themify Ultra is one of the most popular themes for small business websites.

They provide premium WordPress themes for various types of websites such as online shops, personal blogs, online magazines, restaurants, company profiles and many others.

For only $ 89 you can get access to download all the premium themes and plugins they provide.

How to Install WordPress Themes?

You can install a WordPress theme via the WordPress administration panel in two ways, namely the search and upload methods.

a) Install WordPress Theme Using Search Method

If you want to find a free theme from the WordPress.org Theme Directory, the easiest and fastest installation method is to use the search feature in the WordPress administration panel.

First, log in to the WordPress administration panel then click the Appearance → Themes menu.

wordpress theme menu

Once on the page that lists the WordPress themes installed on WordPress, click the Add New button which is at the top.

wordpress add new theme

Then you can choose the WordPress theme that you want to use with the search feature on that page.

wordpress search theme

When you have found a suitable theme, place the mouse cursor over the image of the theme you have chosen until the Details & Preview, Install, and Preview buttons appear. Then click the Install button to perform the installation.

wordpress install theme

WordPress will immediately start the theme installation process. When finished, a message will appear stating that the installation was successful along with a button to activate the theme.

wordpress activate theme

Click Activate and the appearance of the website will change according to the theme you choose.

b) Install WordPress Theme Using Upload Method

The first method can only be used to install a free WordPress theme available at the WordPress.org Theme Directory. If you want to install a premium theme or a theme you made yourself, you must use the upload method.

First, log in to the WordPress administration panel then click the Appearance → Themes menu.

Once on the page that lists the WordPress themes installed on WordPress, click the Add New button which is at the top.

Then click the Upload Theme button.

wordpress upload theme

Select the theme that you have saved on your computer in .ZIP format then click the Install Now button.

wordpress browse theme

WordPress will start the installation process immediately. When finished, a notification will appear along with a link to activate the theme.

wordpress upload theme sukses

Click Activate to activate the theme and the appearance of the website will change according to the theme you choose.

How to Manage WordPress Theme Settings?

You can adjust the appearance of the website according to your needs by clicking the Appearance → Customize menu. There are many website elements that you can customize, for example menu navigation, typography, colors, layout, and so on.

Each theme usually has its own uniqueness. So you don’t need to be confused if you find different settings between one theme and another. You just have to try one by one until you get a website display that suits your needs.

Here’s how the customizer looks on the GeneratePress theme:

generatepress customizer

If you use a different theme, the menu that will appear in the Customizer will most likely be different. But you don’t need to worry because usually the difference is not too significant.


We hope this article can help you understand what a WordPress theme is, know how to install it and be able to find the right theme for your website.

If you have questions about WordPress themes that we haven’t had the chance to discuss in this article, don’t hesitate to send us a message via the contact form. Our team will respond as soon as possible.

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