A WordPress blog theme is a set of templates and style sheets that are used to customize the appearance of a WordPress website in such a way as to make it the way you want it.
WordPress blog themes are not difficult to find, there are many sources that you can access to find a suitable minimalist WordPress theme.
The official source of WordPress themes is certainly the main source for searching or just to browse WordPress themes.
There are free and premium WordPress themes with differences which will be discussed in detail below. Changing themes too often will make your website’s SEO rating decrease, especially if you choose a theme with a bad coding structure.
In choosing a minimalist WordPress theme, you need to consider several important things and here is how to choose a WordPress blog theme:
The appearance of a website is the basis of the website’s image, everyone when they want to choose a WordPress theme will always pay attention to this.
What kind of appearance is suitable for your website? This question can be answered from the content/type of the website. If your website covers a variety of topics, you should consider using a theme magazine or an online magazine.
A magazine type WordPress blog theme will make your website well-structured in terms of appearance. You can separate the display of various posts according to their respective categories.
This will make it easier for visitors to access the website blog, help them find information that is of interest to them, and of course make your website tidier even though the topics you cover are many and varied.
Also consider the element of “simplicity” in terms of appearance. In this case we can imitate Google. Even though it has become a giant search engine that we almost always use, Google still continues to carry the principle of simplicity in terms of appearance.
The main purpose of the Google search engine is to make it easier for users to use its services. This goal, in terms of appearance, is of course achieved very perfectly because we can easily use the search engine.
No one likes a messy and too colorful look, therefore you must choose a WordPress blog theme wisely in terms of appearance. Consider the aspects of simplicity of appearance, suitable colors and fonts, layouts, and so on.
- Price: Free vs. Premium
Currently, there are more than millions of WordPress themes created from the work of hundreds of thousands of developers, all of which are spread into free and premium themes.
Free themes generally don’t have the ‘wow’ features offered by premium themes so you need additional plugins to get the features you need.
Premium themes have many features, but not all of them suit our needs, so using additional plugins is also another alternative to get certain features.
Premium themes are also paid, which is definitely ‘not cheap’, but still considered worth the price when compared to the features it offers.
However, not all free themes deserve to be underestimated. WordPress is currently very observant of the coding quality of free themes that are submitted before they can be downloaded by all WordPress users.
Not to mention, free WordPress themes are now starting to be able to provide additional built-in features which are certainly interesting to try, although of course they are not as powerful as premium themes.
Advantages of Premium WordPress themes:
- Supported by a variety of advanced features.
- Very attractive appearance and well-coded.
- Able to create a multifunctional blog.
- Full technical support from the developers.
- Easy to customize.
- Update regularly.
- Able to make your blog different from other blogs, even though the theme you use is the same as the others.
- Complete documentation or usage instructions.
Disadvantages of Premium WordPress themes:
- The price is relatively expensive, ranging from $30 to $300, especially if there is a special custom for your blog.
- Because of the many features offered (though not all of the features you will need), website loading becomes slower, although not always.
- Not necessarily compatible with the WordPress hosting you are using.
- Its use is relatively complicated, even though it is supported by complete documentation, because not all users understand technical things very well.
- There are still many features that are not really needed, so they just decorate the theme itself.
Advantages of Free WordPress themes:
- Free (this one for sure).
- For a free theme, there are relatively many users, so you can ask other users certain things related to the theme.
- Free themes are generally simpler and lighter, so they don’t burden your hosting.
Disadvantages of Free WordPress themes:
- Not completely well-coded.
- Does not guarantee the quality of security, coding, design, loading speed, and various other important things.
- It’s relatively difficult to get help from the developer on certain things.
- It can’t be guaranteed about the update because developers are not required to keep updating their free themes.
- Limited features.
- It is more difficult to customize according to your wishes and needs.
- The appearance of your blog will be similar to other blogs that use the same free theme.
- The display is sometimes less attractive and is not free to adjust the display.
If you are not ready to spend money to buy a premium theme, then free themes are still the main choice.
However, in general, the most important aspect that you should pay attention to in choosing a minimalist WordPress theme between free and premium is the quality and care in making it.
The quality of coding is one of the most important because it will affect various crucial aspects of your website, from SEO, security, to website loading speed.
To help you rate the quality of free and premium WordPress blog themes, please read carefully what the user says/ratings.
Usually there will be ratings and user comments about a theme. You also need to look at the forum of the theme, what problems are often experienced by users and have they been resolved?
Next, how is the developer’s alertness in responding to these problems?
The next thing you need to pay attention to is the changelog section, how often is the theme updated? Also, you can consider the quality of a theme from the developer’s portfolio; see what kind of themes he has created.
In this case, it is hoped that you will be able to consider which theme is suitable for you to use in terms of price, whether you prefer to invest funds in a WordPress blog theme or not.
- Choose a Theme That Matches Your Website Content (Type & Niche Website)
As mentioned above, you need to choose a WordPress theme that matches the content of your website. If you discuss various topics, it’s a good idea to choose a WordPress theme that is magazine.
The magazine theme makes your blog easier to navigate or access, because this theme is usually ‘crowded’ but can still be customized so that the content that appears is in accordance with its category and is neater.
If you have a website with more specific content, such as a personal blog or a computer-only website, then you only need a theme that looks simpler.
Each theme is made for a more specific blog display, it can also be for multifunctional needs.
What you need to pay attention to from the description of a WordPress theme is for what purpose this theme is suitable for use, usually accompanied by labels such as WordPress Theme for Personal Blogger, WordPress Theme for News/Magazine, WordPress Theme for Business, and so on.
- Responsive & Mobile-Friendliness
Responsiveness of a website is one of Google’s main priorities today in ranking website rankings in search results.
Responsiveness is one of the plus points that a minimalist WordPress theme has. Even though responsiveness is no longer an obstacle because almost all themes are now responsive, you still have to consider the mobile-friendliness of the theme.
A responsive WordPress theme will be able to adjust the appearance of a website when opened on various screen sizes, whether it’s a desktop, tablet, to other smaller mobile devices.
When a website is opened on a desktop/web browser on a computer or laptop, the website that will appear is the actual display.
If it is opened on a smaller screen, for example, it is opened on a tablet and other mobile devices, and a website with a responsive theme is able to adjust the display according to the screen size, then that is responsiveness.
- Multifunctional & Flexible Theme
There are so many themes that can give a cool and unique look to websites that use them.
However, if you are thinking of continuing to use one theme for the long term, especially if you decide to buy a premium theme, then consider buying a theme that is multifunctional and flexible.
A theme that is multifunctional and flexible means that you can use one theme to make your website able to support various types of content / niches / types of your blog.
For example, in one website you want to create various important pages. Multifunctional and flexible themes can help you create different layouts for a collection of articles and their categories, sliders, portfolios, online stores, forums, galleries, and so on in one website with the same theme.
This type of theme is generally a premium theme. If you are planning to develop your website to a more advanced stage, offering a variety of services and features, not only written content, then choosing a multifunctional and flexible WordPress theme like the list above is a must for you to consider.
- Loading Speed
As mentioned above, a theme with a variety of features that you don’t actually need will affect the website loading speed when used.
However, it does not mean that a theme with many features in it will always make your website take longer to load.
With the intelligence of the developers of each theme, even though they create lots of features in a theme, the developers can optimize the performance of the themes they create with the regularity of the coding used, so that the many features will not slow down the loading of your blog.
The loading speed of a website is very important because it will affect the website rating and the convenience of users when accessing your website.
You can find out the loading speed of a theme by testing it with the following tools:
- Google Pagespeed Insight
- Pingdom Tool
The easiest way to test it is to copy the demo URL of a minimalist WordPress theme, then paste it into each of these tools. See each comparison of the loading speed of each theme you want to use.
Not all themes are SEO-friendly, and not all SEO-friendly themes will guarantee good SEO value for your website. The SEO value of a website does depend on your efforts to optimize it. But one of the determining factors is the theme we use.
There are many factors that make a theme an SEO-friendly theme, for example the use of meta tags, drop items, coding according to the latest HTML standards, in accordance with CSS, JS standards, and so on.
Good coding structure also affects the SEO-friendly level of a website, including loading speed when used.
- Ease of Use
Choose a minimalist WordPress theme that is easy to use. Many themes will provide documentation on how to use and other configurations.
Many themes also provide theme options through the Theme Options Panel or Theme Customizer, Page Builder, Front-End Builder, and so on. Read carefully what features are provided by the theme.
You need to remember, coding errors can make a website that uses a certain theme vulnerable to security problems, especially from hacking.
If there is a slight gap in the coding structure, then your website will be vulnerable to being hacked. Before choosing a particular minimalist WordPress theme, first read carefully the forum provided for each theme.
Read user comments on security and other issues. The theme also has to be updated frequently to make it stronger from the gaps that are considered vulnerable.
Therefore, always consider security issues before using a particular theme. If you find a theme that hasn’t been updated in a long time, even though it looks to your taste, you shouldn’t use it.
- Ease of Customization
Many WordPress themes are very easy to customize according to your taste so that they certainly look different from other blogs even though they use the same minimalist WordPress theme.
The average premium theme provides this feature. There are also many free themes that provide this feature.
If you’re not sure, you can also create a WordPress Child Theme to customize the look of your website and the changes won’t go away even if you update your theme later.
Where can I see a collection of WordPress blog themes to choose which theme to use?
To complete this article, here is a collection of resources that you can use to look at the best WordPress blog themes:
- WordPress Repository: Official WordPress Theme Store
- Blossom Themes
- Elegant Themes
Hopefully this article will help you find a WordPress theme that is not only cool in terms of appearance, complete in terms of features, but is suitable and good for you to use on your website.
Choosing the right WordPress theme for your website often sounds easy, but in reality, you are often confused because of the many options available, both free and premium.
Choosing the right minimalist WordPress theme, of course, must be based on various considerations that you must consider carefully before actually using it.