Where To Find The Best WordPress Themes

This tutorial shows you where to find many great free or premium WordPress themes for your online business, e-commerce store, website, or blog.

WordPress

In a separate post, we have written a comprehensive overview of WordPress Themes.

If you haven’t yet discovered WP themes and what makes themes so attractive to website owners, then go here to read the article: About WordPress Themes – A Practical Guide

In this blog post, you will learn where you can look for free and paid themes for your WP website. You will also learn about the different types of WP theme resources and get tips on how to make sure that you get the right themes for your needs and avoid dealing with problems like lack of support and poorly-coded themes.

As explained in another post, a WordPress theme is a special kind of web template that is used on WordPress-driven websites and blogs and designed to work specifically with WordPress in mind.

Many skilled website designers and web design companies create themes for WordPress. Consequently, WordPress users have access to thousands of quality themes covering a wide-range of uses and applications.

Themes cover a wide-range of applications.

Where To Find Great Responsive Themes For WordPress: How To Avoid Getting Overwhelmed

Let’s say you were to launch Google and search for the following:

  • best free WordPress themes
  • best free WordPress themes
  • best paid WordPress themes for business (enter whatever your business, search topic or blog is about)

You are probably going to get an overwhelming amount of junk to sort through in the search results.

So, to help you save time and make things easier, we’ll just cut through the clutter and make the process of finding great WP themes really simple.

WordPress.com vs WordPress.org Themes

Before we get started, you should know that WordPress offers both a hosted and a self-hosted version. We’ll explain these differences in another article. For now, we’ll only focus on finding themes for the self-hosted version of WordPress (WordPress.org) in this post, which gives you more freedom, more options and more control over your web design.

Free vs Paid WordPress Themes

Next, it’s important to know that you will easily find many Free and Paid themes being made available. Free WP themes are normally distributed as Open Source Software under the terms of the GNU General Public License, or they will be listed as Premium (paid) themes.

WP Theme Marketplaces And Directories Commercial And Independent WordPress Theme Design Houses

There are two places where WordPress themes can be found. The first type of place is in theme marketplaces and WP theme directories. The second place are the commercial and independent WP theme stores.

Theme marketplaces and theme directories are large theme stores. WordPress theme developers (both commercial and independent) list their themes (both free and paid) in the marketplace or directory and customers find these just like they would if they were shopping for apps on an app store or software marketplace.

Some of the bigger theme stores don’t just sell WordPress themes. They can also sell WP plugins and templates for other web applications (e.g. Joomla, Drupal, etc.)

Commercial and independent WordPress theme developers typically will develop both free and premium themes, and can vary in size, from an individual designer or a small team of developer, to large web and theme design companies.

Most commercial or independent theme developers sell their themes exclusively on their own web sites, but some will also list their themes in marketplaces and directories, or even create a free or “lite” version of their themes for free directories .

Let’s now show you where to find the best WP themes for your blog.

Where To Find The Best Themes For Your WordPress Website Or Blog

WordPress.org

WordPress.org - WP Theme Repository

(WordPress.org – Theme Directory)

The official WordPress.org theme directory is the biggest and best place to download free WordPress themes. In fact, it’s probably the only free directory you should use when looking for free WordPress themes. The reason for this, is because –as some free software users have discovered– downloading free software, add-ons, apps, templates or themes from untrustworthy places can contain malicious code and place your computer, digital presence … even your entire business at risk.

The WP theme directory is not only a trustworthy and reputable place to download themes for your website, but it also relies on a theme review team to review and make sure that each theme uploaded to the directory meets their standards of quality and security.

To browse thousands of professionally-designed FREE WordPress themes from the official WP Themes Repository, go here:

http://www.wordpress.org/extend/themes

Useful Tip

Look For Free WP Themes Without Leaving Your Own WP Dashboard

Useful Tip: You can easily browse through every theme in the WordPress directory and not only find what you are looking for, but also easily install and activate it directly from within your WP admin panel with a couple of mouse clicks.

Look For Free WordPress Themes Without Leaving Your Own WordPress Dashboard!

Use The WordPress Theme Filters

WordPress provides a filtering function inside the admin area that lets you narrow down your search for themes based on criteria like Colours, Layout and Features …

Use WP Theme Feature Filter

This makes it easier to find what you are looking for. For example, you could search for themes with predominantly orange color design, with a 4-column layout and a full-width template, or themes that support custom menus, etc.

Note: in the post where we discuss the importance of using “responsive” WordPress themes, we explained how these ensure that your theme will display without problems across all devices (e.g. the PCs, smartphones and tablets used by visitors to view your site information) …

Use Theme Filters

You should use responsive themes, and the WordPress theme filtering option lets you do just that …

Use WP Theme Filtering

… and bring back only themes that are “responsive” …

Use The WP Theme Filters

Pros & Cons Of Using Free Themes

The obvious “pro” to using free WP themes is that it costs you nothing to download and use the theme on your site. An added plus, is that many free themes are professionally designed and provide a number of built-in customizable settings, giving you great flexibility and choice in how you configure all of its various layout elements.

The ”cons” of using free WP themes are that your themes may not get updated as often with new features and bug fixes, and it’s unrealistic to expect the developer to provide immediate support, especially if they are not getting paid. Many freely distributed themes will ask you for a donation to help cover their costs of providing support.

When downloading free themes, therefore, check to see when the theme was last updated. If it’s been more than a year since any changes were made, then it’s best to think carefully about downloading it, as the theme may have been abandoned by its developer.

If you’re just getting started and your website is still quite new, there is nothing wrong with using a free theme until you have a better idea of the kind of site design that would work best for your site before spending money on a paid theme. Who knows, the free theme you’ve downloaded may just be the thing that works for you and your business.

Now that we’ve seen how to find free themes in the WordPress.org theme directory and how to filter your search for themes that meet specific requirements, let’s turn our attention to paid themes.

Premium WP Themes

If you are looking for themes with stunning web design, or professional quality yet highly affordable WordPress web design themes with a distinctive look, unique customizable options and great support, then search through the WordPress theme galleries of the “Premium” theme design agencies listed below:

WordPress Theme Marketplaces

ThemeForest

ThemeForest

ThemeForest is one of the biggest and best-known WP theme marketplaces online.

ThemeForest lets many professional WordPress theme creators showcase their designs through their online marketplace. There are well over 17,000 premium themes to choose from (some starting from as little as $3) …

ThemeForest - Premium WordPress Themes

(click on the above images to view more themes on ThemeForest)

If you visit the ThemeForest theme marketplace, you will be able to browse for specific WP themes in a range of categories, such as:

  • Blog/Magazine – themes for bloggers and parenting blogs, etc.
  • Corporate – themes suitable for government sites or marketing purposes.
  • Creative – themes for creative work, writers, etc.
  • Directory Listings – themes suitable for sites related to travel, buy & sell, community resources, etc.
  • eCommerce – themes for selling products online, event bookings and registrations, etc.
  • Education – themes that suit sites related to teaching, etc.
  • Entertainment – themes for music and bands blogs, music venues, etc.
  • Mobile – e.g. mobile-switching themes.
  • NonProfit – themes for nonprofit organizations, churches, etc.
  • Real Estate – themes for real estate and real estate listings (e.g. rentals, etc.)
  • Retail – themes for retail stores, trades or professionals (electricians, medical practitioners, etc.)
  • Technology – themes related to apps, affiliate marketing, seo, product reviews, direct sales, etc.
  • Wedding – e.g. themes for wedding sites and dating advice blogs
  • Miscellaneous – themes suitable for writing or discussing environmental issues, parenting sites or blogs … even themes you can use if your site is still under-construction!

Useful Tip

When you purchase WordPress themes from ThemeForest, you will receive email notifications when a new update is available for your theme …

ThemeForest emails you theme update notifications

(ThemeForest sends you theme update notifications)

Go here to browse many quality premium WordPress themes in the ThemeForest website:

Creative Market

Creative Market - WordPress Theme Marketplace

(click on the above images to view all Creative Market themes)

Creative Market is another leading WP theme directory where you can browse thousands of quality premium WP themes from independent theme creators.

As stated on their website …

“Creative Market is a platform for handcrafted, mousemade design content from independent creatives around the world.”

Creative Market doesn’t just sell WordPress themes in its directory, but you can easily browse hundreds of themes for WordPress and search through their theme categories from the site’s dropdown “Themes” menu …

Creative Market WP themes marketplace

Browse through hundreds of great premium WordPress themes crafted by independent WP theme designers in the Creative Market directory here:

Mojo Themes

Mojo Themes - WordPress Theme Marketplace

(click on the above images to see more Mojo themes)

Mojo is a marketplace for premium-quality WordPress themes where theme vendors are strongly encouraged to provide customers with lifetime support and upgrades.

According to their website …

“Mojo is a marketplace where anyone can find, rate and buy quality themes & templates in one trusted place.”

Like Envato and Creative Market, Mojo doesn’t focus exclusively on WP themes, but you can easily browse hundreds of WordPress themes and search through their theme categories (e.g. Responsive or Photography themes and theme frameworks, etc.) by using the dropdown “WordPress Themes” menu …

Mojo - themes

Visit the site to find great premium WP themes in the Mojo theme directory here:

Now that we have looked at WordPress theme aggregators, let’s look at commercial WP theme design houses.

Commercial WP Theme Shops

SoloStream

SoloStream provides WordPress users with a great selection of professional quality WordPress themes and the option of accessing all themes through a WordPress theme membership.

Solostream Themes For WordPress

(click on above images to see more themes from SoloStream)

Woo Themes

Woo Themes creates functional WordPress themes and offers a membership option that allows you to access their entire theme collection.

WooThemes Premium Themes

(click on the images above to view more WooThemes themes)

StoreFront

StoreFront specializes in creating WordPress themes for e-commerce. StoreFront themes also integrate well with some of the most powerful e-commerce platforms and plugins available.

StoreFront

(click on the images above to view all themes from StoreFront)

StudioPress

StudioPress develops WordPress themes based on a framework that allows users to quickly and easily build a professional and search optimized WordPress site, and provides a self-updating design architecture, turn-key site designs with beautiful frames for your content and unprecedented control of the framework.

Many website developers like the Genesis framework not only because it’s well-coded and well-supported (the development team at StudioPress keeps the framework regularly up-to-date to reflect best practices for coding and to ensure that it is always compatible with the latest WordPress version, but because you can update themes built using the Genesis framework without losing any customizations you may have made to your theme.

This is because StudioPress themes use something called “child themes,” which are like “skins” that sit on top of the theme framework and gives your site its unique look and feel.

If this all sounds way too technical, there’s no need to feel concerned about it. StudioPress themes are very easy to work with, just like all other WordPress themes. The great thing about choosing themes from StudioPress is that one low price entitles you to receive unlimited support and updates, and you can install your themes on unlimited domains.

For more details, click here: StudioPress.

StudioPress - WP Themes

(click on the images above to browse all themes from StudioPress)

WP Theme-Checking Tools

Here are a few more useful WP theme-related tools worth knowing about:

What WordPress Theme Is That.com

What WordPress Theme Is That.com

What WordPress Theme Is That.com is a free WP theme-checking tool that allows you to easily detect what WP theme and plugins a website or blog is using.

This is a great resource if you have come across a WordPress site that you like and would like to know what WP theme the website or blog is using.

Tip

Tip: If you can’t tell whether a site runs on WordPress or not, go here for a great tutorial that shows you how to tell if a website is WP-driven: Was My Website Built Using WordPress? Tell-Tale Signs & WP-Checking Tools

Using this tool is very simple. Just enter the site’s domain name into the field and click the search icon or hit “Enter.” The tool will then not only confirm if the site is powered by the WP CMS platform, but it will also list the theme being used and list any WP plugins it detects.

Theme Authenticity Checker (TAC)

Warning

A word of warning: If you decide to use FREE themes for your WordPress site, we strongly recommend sticking with the themes listed in the official WordPress theme directory.

A commonly-used strategy employed by a number of hackers and syndicates that engage in cyber criminal activities is to put up sites and directories offering “Free” themes for WordPress all over the web and distribute themes and plugins containing malicious code. In fact, some of these sites even come up on search engine results for key phrases like “free WordPress themes“, “best free WordPress themes”” etc. It’s best, therefore, to stick with the official WordPress.org theme repository, or use established and trusted theme merchants.

If you have any concerns about whether a WordPress theme that you have installed on your site may contain malicious or unwanted code, use a free WordPress plugin like Theme Authenticity Checker (TAC) to scan your theme files. This plugin searches the source files of every installed theme on your site for signs of suspicious code and outputs a report …

Theme Authenticity Checker (TAC)

(TAC Report Page – Source: Plugin)

We hope that you have found the information on how to find great WordPress useful.

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"This is AMAZING! I had learnt about how to use WordPress previously, but this covers absolutely everything and more!! Incredible value! Thank you!" - Monique, Warrior Forum

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