WordPress Themes: Assessing the Options

Wordpress Themes: Assessing the Options explains where a blogger can find themes for Wordpress.org and what information is available for each theme.

I’m searching for a new blog theme compatible with my self-hosted WordPress blog.

I’ve just begun my search. I’m currently using Thesis, a theme developed by DIY Themes and I might consider the updated version of that. As you may have noticed this blog as it stands now, isn’t particularly user-friendly on a mobile device, particularly something with a small screen like a phone so that will definitely be part of the criteria for a new theme. Thesis is a commercial theme that I bought a licence for.

Free WordPress.org Themes

Did you know that WordPress.org has a massive directory of free themes?

You can search for these themes by:

  • Featured which currently lists 15 themes
  • Popular which lists all of the 1777 free themes available on this site according to popularity which is determined by the number of downloads.
  • Latest which lists the free themes from newest to oldest.

You can create a filter to search for particular features in a theme if you’ve got something specific in mind.

Filtering options include:

  • Colors – Black, Blue, Brown, Gray, Green, Orange, Pink, Purple, Red, Silver, Tan, White, Yellow, Dark and Light
  • Layout – Fixed Layout, Fluid Layout, Responsive Layout, One Column, Two Columns, Three Columns, Four Columns, Left Sidebar and Right Sidebar
  • Features – Accessibility ready, Blavatar, BuddyPress, Custom Background, Custom Colors, Custom Header, Custom Menu, Editor Style, Featured Image Header, Featured Images, Flexible Header, Front Page Posting, Full Width Template, Microformats, Post Formats, RTL Language Support, Sticky Post, Theme Options, Threaded Comments and Translation Ready
  • Subject – Holiday, Photoblogging and Seasonal

If you place your cursor over the sample pictures for a theme you can click on the “More Info” button that appears and go to a detailed description for that particular theme. On the right panel of the pages describing the individual themes, you can:

  • opt to preview or download the theme
  • see the ratings for that particular theme given out of a potential of 5 stars
  • see date of the last updates to the theme
  • access the link to the support forum for that theme
  • see the list of tags for that theme that correspond to the Features Filter
  • see the number of downloads per day and overall number of downloads for that theme

For example, on the Homepage of the Twenty Twelve theme, we can see that:

  • it was last updated on December 17, 2014.
  • it has a 4.5 out of 5 stars rating with a total of 119 reviews
  • there have been 1,732,253 downloads of this theme overall

WordPress.org Commercial Themes

WordPress.org also offers a directory of commercial themes. These themes are not free but may offer features and stability that some of the free themes may not offer.

I need to compile a list of my criteria for a new theme and then check out the possibilities and make some decisions.

What do you think? What features do you think are important for a writer’s blog? Is there a particular theme that you like or can recommend? Tell me in the comments.

Photo credit: Pixabay