WordPress is one of this planet’s most popular content management systems (CMS). It has become popular over time because it is completely free to use, being an open-sourced software for website developers. As a result, over 35% of all the websites you see on the World Wide Web are created using WordPress.
However, the simple black-and-white theme of WordPress can get boring over time. This is why many web designers have wanted to change the look of WordPress and spice things up a bit. Therefore, how to change theme WordPress has become essential for developers to know in 2022.
If you wish to know the same, then you are at the right place. If you read this article, you will learn how to change your WordPress theme. However, you must also know what to do before and after changing your WordPress theme since a tiny mistake can mess things up.
What To Do Before Installing A Theme WordPress?
Before you learn how to change theme WordPress, there are certain things you need to take care of. They are:
Copy Your Current Theme’s Snippets
If you added snippets of code directly to the functions.php file of WordPress, then go through your file once.
After doing so, write down all the extra codes you have added to the file. This step is crucial because it will help you rewrite the code when you change your theme and a new functions.php file is created.
This also includes any tracking codes that you might have used to gather information about on-page analytics. Note them down just in case your new WordPress theme does not support the inclusion of Google AdSense and Analytics code in the background.
Test Your Present Load Times
Before you learn how to change theme WordPress, check how long it takes for you to load your website. Then, change your theme and do the same again. Note the time it takes to load up your page beforehand after you change your theme.
Create A Backup Of Everything
I highly recommend creating a backup of all posts and blogs you have written so far. This is because if anything wrong happens during the theme-changing process, you can potentially lose all your data, with your website being wiped of content entirely.
Maintenance Mode Your Site
It’s a good practice always to put your site in maintenance mode when you are changing themes. This is because it will make your site inactive temporarily so that people do not need to see your under-construction site.
For this purpose, you can use a WordPress plugin called SeedProd. This plugin lets you create visually aesthetic “site under maintenance” pages so that you can change your theme while that is up.
How To Change WordPress Theme?
To learn how to change theme on WordPress, you need to understand and follow the steps mentioned below:
1. Make A Backup Of Your Site
The first thing that you need to do is to make a backup of your entire website. This is important because any discrepancies in the theme installation process can disrupt the data present on your website pages.
Therefore, instead of restoring your website from scratch, it’s best to back it all up through WordPress staging. You also have the option to set up a lo=cal WordPress environment to preview changes before it goes live. Doing so allows you to create a copy of your website by creating backups.
2. Go To The Themes Section In WordPress
In the options on the left-hand side of your WordPress page, you will find several options. To find the menu for themes, you need to go to the Appearance option and then go to Themes.
Here, you will find the list of all the themes that are currently installed in WordPress. You can externally download many plugins that let you access various other themes as well. They will all appear in this themes section.
You can select which theme you want from here. If you want a new theme, you should click on the Add New button in the Themes section.
3. Install The WordPress Theme
A new page will open up after clicking on the Add New button. This will reveal many themes that WordPress provides to its users. In addition, wordPress offers thousands of free themes for all users. This makes it easier to learn how to change theme in WordPress.
Therefore, choose one of them from the menu that appears after clicking on the Add New button. Besides the theme that you chose, there will be an Install button next to it. Simply click on it to proceed.
On the other hand, if you want to install premium themes, you can download them from other websites or plugins. These premium themes will always come in a ZIP file, which you need to download and extract on one of your drives.
After extracting, go to the WordPress themes section and click on Upload Theme. Then click on Choose File and browse for the extracted files on your computer.
4. Activate The WordPress Theme
Now, after you have installed the theme, it’s time to activate it. Here, you need to go back to the Themes section and select the theme you want to activate. Since it’s installed, you will now find the Activate Theme option if you hover your cursor over that theme.
If you want to install a premium theme that you just installed, you will get an activation link for it. Simply click on it, and it will be automatically activated through a different confirmation window.
What To Do After Changing Your Theme WordPress?
However, this process is not over yet. Now, you need to follow a few more steps to ensure that your new theme has been installed smoothly. Therefore, you need to:
Exit Maintenance Mode
After changing your theme, the first thing to do is turn off the maintenance mode. Now’s the time to enter your website with a new theme to boost its visual appeal.
Conduct A Website Test
I mentioned earlier that it’s best to test your website and check its load time before changing themes. I hope you have noted down the time taken to load the web pages.
Now, it’s time to repeat the same process and compare the load time taken. If your theme makes the load times slower, you need to optimize your page more or look for another theme.
Add Your Tracking Codes Back In
Remember all the extra tracking and custom codes you added to the functions.php file of WordPress? Since you removed them before changing themes, it’s time to put them back in and restart WordPress for them to take effect.
Check For Cross Browser Compatibility
Different browsers might show your web pages differently based on your WordPress theme. Therefore, open your website from different browsers (Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Edge, etc.) to check whether the new theme is being appropriately shown or not. There might be a chance that will be visual glitches on your website.
FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions):–
Ans: You can manually change your theme WordPress by:
⦿ Go to WordPress Settings
⦿ Click on Appearance
⦿ Go to the Themes section
⦿ Click on the Install option next to the Theme you want
⦿ After it’s installed, click on the Activate option.
Ans: To ensure that you do not lose any WordPress content while changing themes, you must make sure that you have a backup of your website. You can do this by staging your website in maintenance mode while you change your theme.
Ans: Many WordPress themes are provided for free. You can install them from the Themes section of the application. There are many custom-made premium themes available.
Ans: Yes, you can use two different themes for your WordPress website. However, this is only available for the home page and other pages. To do so, go to WordPress settings and enter the Site homepage option. Then, from the dropdown menu, you can select a different theme just for your homepage.
It is important to know how to change Theme WordPress because you might want to change the look of your website. Doing so might be a good idea because it’s interesting to keep the look of your website fresh and trendy.
However, to ensure that the theme-changing process goes smoothly, you must create a backup of your website. Then, after you install the theme and activate it, recheck your website to ensure that no data or content is lost.