A lot of websites these days are powered by WordPress. Many of them are owned by businesses, groups, organizations or by individuals that want to share a part of their life. But it is difficult to discern which of the websites are running on the WordPress platform. The reason why they are different from each other is that of the theme they are using. WordPress has a default theme, but most website owners prefer to have a theme of their own. If you are a beginner of WordPress, you might be thinking about how you can have your WordPress theme or just take one of the pre-made themes made by different contributors to WordPress. You will learn here how to choose and install your very own WordPress theme step by step.
Before Installing the WordPress Theme
It is very easy to install a WordPress theme. However, there are some things that you need to keep in mind when you are choosing a different theme since you are here to know how you can change the default theme of WordPress.
When you change the existing theme of WordPress, the whole look of your website will change. Don’t be alarmed when you see that some of your links have changed its position. While they may have changed their position, their function is pretty much the same way that you had installed the website when you published them in the first place. If you decide to change an existing WordPress theme, you will need to do some things first, especially when you are backing up your files.
Installing the WordPress theme
If you are looking for a WordPress theme that you can install on your website for free, you can find the one that you are looking for stored in the themes directory of WordPress.org.
The first step to do is by logging into your WordPress administrator area. Once you have successfully logged in, click Appearance then click on Themes. You will find default themes that you can use and change your current one. However, you can find more by clicking the Add New button. It will take you to the next screen.
In there, you get to choose from Popular WordPress themes, Featured WordPress Themes, Latest WordPress themes, search for a particular theme or even look for themes that have particular features that you are looking for. You can choose from one of the themes as you click in one of the links above. But if you want to look for a more specific theme, you type in the words of a theme or category that they belong to in the search box right at the upper right of the screen. After pressing the enter button, it will return the search results based on the keyword you have provided. Choose one that you find to your liking by bringing your mouse over the image. It will show the Install, details, and preview button. You can use the preview button to see how your website will look like when you choose that theme. Once you have gotten the hang of how the theme will look like, go back and click the Install button.
At this time, WordPress will install the theme of your choosing and at the same time will show you the message that the installation was successful together with the live preview or activate links in order apply the theme to your website.
Do take note that there are differences in every theme created for WordPress. Most free themes are based on the basic layout on how WordPress is arranged. Other themes, particularly the ones that you have to pay, will have different settings, options and you might be required to configure something first like through its options panel or theme customizer.
Installing WordPress Theme by Uploading
The method above is by search, but by uploading, you will do it in a different approach. There are other WordPress themes that you might not find in the search results from within WordPress, but is available from searching outside of it. These are referred to as the “Premium” themes that come from companies that specialized in providing IT solutions.
Others create their theme by using programming languages and photo editing software that they will apply to WordPress. Either way, you will need to upload whatever you have finished from your custom creation.
You start it off by downloading the .zip file of the WordPress theme that you have bought commercially.
You log in to your administrator area, then click on the link Appearance then Themes. Once you have reached the Themes page, press the Add New button right at the top of the screen. Instead of searching for a theme, you will click on the Upload Theme button. It will bring out a dialog box that will ask you to upload the Theme file you have purchased from a third party. Click on the Choose File button to do this.
When the theme is finally installed, you will be prompted by WordPress that it has successfully installed the theme, together with the link Activate so as to apply the theme to your current website. Again, the themes are created differently, and Premium themes tend to be very different from the free themes that you have gotten used with WordPress.
Other Things to Taking Note of
Keep in mind that WordPress.org and WordPress.com are different, although they are powered by the same platform. The latter has limited features unlike with the former, where you get to customize the options and even upload a custom theme. WordPress.com does not offer the upload option. You will need to use the self-hosted WordPress.org to get the upload theme option.
Some WordPress users also install custom themes using FTP or File Transfer Protocol. This method is left for the most adventurous type of users that want to take their website to the next level. You need to learn more about WordPress themes, how to design them from scratch and even take on putting up exclusive plugins that only your theme can use.