Choosing a theme for your WordPress site is no small task. Your theme will make a big impression on your users, and can improve or inhibit your site’s success. There’s a lot to consider when it comes to design and functionality, and with so many themes to choose from, the process of finding the right one can seem overwhelming.
That being said, there is an upside to having so many options. With the wide variety of themes available, you’re sure to find one that offers the perfect set of styles and features for your site. Whether you run a blog, an online store, or another kind of site entirely, there’s a theme that can take your website to the next level.
In this article, we’ll explain some important considerations you’ll want to make when choosing a theme. Then we’ll share the best modern free and premium WordPress themes for 2019. Let’s get going!
Choosing a WordPress Theme
When it comes to choosing the best theme for a website, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. It’s important to keep you site’s specific needs in mind when researching theme options, so you can choose the one that’s most likely to improve your site’s style and ease of use.
However, one feature that will benefit all sites is a theme’s responsiveness, or how well it adapts to different screen sizes. A responsive theme will display your site just as clearly on a smartphone as it does on a desktop. With the number of mobile internet users steadily increasing, mobile responsiveness is a vital feature for any theme.
StudioPress is an excellent resource for responsive themes that are suited to a wide variety of needs. With more than 35 themes available, StudioPress has something for every kind of site. You can even access themes that have been crafted with specific industries in mind, including real estate, photography, and eCommerce.
Choosing the right theme is the first step towards creating a professional, successful site. You likely already have great content and/or products to share with your visitors. However, your site’s appearance and layout does a lot to determine whether those products and that content will be successful.
The Best Free WordPress Themes
Saving a little money is always nice, so a good place to start your search is by considering some of the numerous free themes that are available for WordPress. There are plenty of options that will make your site look compelling without requiring you to shell out any cash.
Here are our top picks, in no particular order. All of these themes are fully responsive on mobile devices.
Multipurpose themes offer extreme flexibility when it comes to design and features. Spacious can be used for small business sites, online portfolios, blogs, and a variety of other website types. It includes several page layouts, templates, blog display types, and other customizable features to meet your site’s design needs.
- Provides numerous layouts, templates, widgets, and color options for customization
- Includes WooCommerce compatibility
For those who want to put their content in the spotlight, ColorMag is an ideal theme. Its magazine-style design has multiple options for displaying posts, so you can show off your content in a way that will make it shine. Plus, you can customize your color scheme and widget areas as well.
- Provides a magazine-style layout that’s ideal for publishing blog posts, news, and other long-form content
- Includes multiple customization options for post display, widgets, and color schemes
Shapely includes integrations with several key plugins, including WooCommerce, Yoast SEO, Jetpack, and Gravity Forms. As a one-page theme, it’s ideal for small business sites, portfolios, eCommerce stores, and personal sites. Shapely is highly customizable, with unlimited color options and widgets that let you add a portfolio, testimonials, and much more.
- Provides multiple plugin integrations and customization options
- Is well-optimized for search engines
Professionals and hobbyists alike can appreciate this popular theme. OceanWP is eCommerce-ready, and built with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) in mind. Although it’s useable for all kinds of sites, its fast loading times, floating Add to Cart bar, and product quick-view displays make this theme ideal for online retailers.
- Includes appealing features for eCommerce sites, including WooCommerce integration, floating Add to Cart bars, and product quick-views
- Provides fast loading times and built-in SEO to boost your Search Engine Results Page (SERP) rankings
Enigma-Parallax is all about user-friendliness and customization. It includes a home page contact form so your visitors can get in touch, and a long list of customization options including full color and layout controls. You can preview all your changes in the theme’s live customizer, to be sure you like them before making a commitment.
- Designed to fit multiple purposes, including small business sites, portfolios, and blogs
- Offers a wide range of customization options for those wishing to make their site their own
6. Shop Isle
If you’re looking to create the perfect online store, a theme built just for eCommerce may be right for you. Shop Isle will help you display your products clearly, and show off all their best features. With its dedicated Theme Options panel, you can customize your site to include important brand elements such as your logo and social media links.
- Is designed with eCommerce sites in mind, including a blog section for content marketing
- Includes customization options that enable you to add your logo and social media links, change the color scheme, and more
Oblique features ideal layouts for bloggers in the fashion, travel, food, lifestyle, and similar industries. Its masonry layout enables you to share your written and visual content in neat, organized displays. With a sleek and modern look, as well as full color control, you can make your blog stylish and personal.
- Includes a modern design with a masonry layout that’s ideal for blogging
- Provides full color control with unlimited variations
This popular multipurpose theme has features that are ideal for a wide variety of projects, including small business, portfolio, and eCommerce sites. Hestia is designed for one-page sites in particular, and integrates with a variety of popular tools such as Elementor. It’s also highly optimized, so you don’t have to worry about it negatively impacting your SEO.
- Provides a simple, modern one-page site design
- Integrates with the Elementor Page Builder, as well as other tools to generate sliders, photo galleries, and maps
The Best Paid WordPress Themes
While there are plenty of high-quality free themes for WordPress, paid themes tend to offer more features. If you’re looking to deck out your site with lots of bells and whistles, paid (or ‘premium’) themes may be the way to go.
In no particular order, here are some of our favorites. Once again, each of these themes is fully responsive.
In a nutshell, consider the Genesis Framework your foundation for either installing a killer StudioPress theme, or building a great child theme of your own.
The flexible framework is ‘Block Editor ready’ by default, and provides clean code under the hood that’s easy to customize and build upon. Front end tweaks can be made through the WordPress Customizer, although you could also use the premium Design Palette Pro plugin.
- Provides Block Editor compatibility
- Includes a Theme Customizer for making uniform changes across your site
Price: A license for the Genesis Framework is $59.95, although you can gain access to it and more than 35 other StudioPress themes for free on all of our plans.
Although it’s technically a multipurpose theme, Jupiter’s Shop Customizer may be particularly appealing to eCommerce site owners. Since it’s integrated with Elementor, this theme enables maximum customization. Plus, its variety of pre-built content helps you quickly add custom 404 and maintenance pages.
- Includes the Elementor Page Builder and a Shop Customizer for optimal flexibility and customization
- Provides over 140 pre-built templates
Price: Licenses start at $29.
TheBlogger is a theme designed for online content creators. With over 200 customization options, and a live customizer that enables you to see changes in real time, you can easily adapt any of its pre-built demos to fit your style. This theme is also optimized for search engines, so you can get to work attracting new readers.
- Provides extensive customization options with multiple header styles, blog layouts, post styles, and slider styles to choose from
- Includes more than 15 demos you can use to build your site
Price: Licenses start at $59.
As a theme with features that come in handy on any website, Divi provides a fully-customizable site building experience. Its pre-built pricing tables, portfolios, post sliders, and blog layouts make it easy to create just about any kind of site you like. Plus, Divi’s visual page builder enables you to see how your site’s front end will look while you’re still making changes.
- Includes features that are ideal for a variety of sites, including eCommerce stores, businesses, portfolios, and blogs
- Provides extensive customization with the Divi Builder
Price: Divi is included with an Elegant Themes membership, which costs for $89 per year or $249 for life.
eCommerce enthusiasts and small business owners will appreciate Flatsome’s shop and business site demos. This theme also provides a lightweight framework, to help you maintain optimal site speed and an excellent User Experience (UX). Plus, the single-page navigation template will ensure that your customers never get lost.
- Supports the latest WooCommerce updates, and includes eCommerce features such as Add to Cart buttons and product quick-views
- Provides fast site speed and simple navigation options
Price: Licenses start at $59.
Designed with creatives in mind, Jevelin is ideal for blogs and portfolio sites. You can base your site on one of its many demos, or build your own from scratch with the Element Editor. You can also completely customize any pre-built features using the theme’s drag-and-drop page builder.
- Includes display options that are ideal for blogs and portfolio sites
- Provides lots of customization through a drag-and-drop page builder
Price: Licenses start at $59.
If you’re building a creative portfolio and want to display your work, Cufo can help. It provides several demos for you to base your site on, with pre-built elements you can easily customize to personalize your portfolio. This theme also includes several responsive grid layouts for a modern look.
- Provides multiple grid layout options that are ideal for portfolios
- Includes 22 demos you can use to build your site
Price: Licenses start at $37.
As one of the best-selling WordPress themes, Avada has a lot of appealing features. It provides extensive customization options for individual elements, whole pages, and your entire site. Its Fusion Builder enables you to easily create pages that fit your site’s needs, and its many templates offer guidance for a variety of industries.
- Provides advanced customization options
- Includes a drag-and-drop page builder, and templates for several popular niches
Price: Licenses start at $60.
The Importance of Themes
When it comes to providing users with a great digital experience, choosing the right theme is crucial. Your site’s theme will play a key role in developing users’ first impressions of your brand, as well as their continued experience on your site.
Our plans here at WP Engine include access to the Genesis Framework and over 35 other StudioPress themes. Building your site with us can help you launch a digital experience that’s sure to wow visitors with both style and functionality!