How to install a WordPress Theme and which mistakes to avoid

WordPress is a digital art in itself. Hundreds and thousands of people work on a website/blog powered by WordPress on a daily basis as it is simple to use and yet powerful enough to make highly complex websites.

Installing a WordPress theme can be overwhelming for a beginner because of a vast range of both free and paid themes available for this platform. And as a matter of fact, this itself shows how popular is this CMS today.

In another post here on Uncle Teddy, you will learn how to install WordPress on your hosting. But this post is focused on how to install a theme on an existing WordPress install. So let us begin.

In this post, we will tell you 11 simple steps that you can take to search, install and upload a theme of your choice and as per your actual needs.

Steps to be taken

1. First of all, log in to the WordPress Admin panel of your website/blog.

2. Click on Appearance and then click on Themes. Here you will be presented with the Manage Themes page where you will see all the themes that are currently installed on your blog.

3. Above that, you will see an Add New button. Click on that.

4. Now you will be presented with a vast range of free to use and customize themes. These themes have been developed by various designers from across the world. Also, these themes are available on the WordPress theme depository.

5. You choose any theme shown here or search for more using the ‘Search themes’ option. Also, you can check out the featured, popular, and latest themes here.

6. Select a theme from the list or your search and then click on it. Now you will be presented with a basic preview on the theme. Please note that this is generally never a proper view of how the theme will actually look on your website, so it’s better to either have a look at the demo site provided by the theme author or have a quick look at the theme thumbnail.

7. Now once you feel that this theme is the one that you want for your blog you have to click on the Install button on the top left side (next to theme preview).

8. Now it will start installing the theme automatically and when the theme is installed it will show the Activate button in place of Install button. Click on that.

9. You can also see the theme installed in the Themes section under Appearance.

10. This is how you install any theme for free inside the WordPress admin panel itself. You can also purchase a professional theme like Hestia Pro and then download it to your computer and install it using the Add New > Upload Theme option.

11. Now your desired WordPress theme is installed and you can begin to start customizing it according to your needs.

These 11 steps are how you install a theme on your WordPress blog/website. But here are some words of caution.

Some things to keep in mind before installing a WordPress theme

a) Do not install many themes on your blog. The best practice is to install any number of themes for testing purpose only and then delete all the themes which you are not going to use.

Keep one basic theme that comes preinstalled from WordPress itself, for example, Twenty Twenty, and one theme that you are actually going to use on your blog.

b) Why keep Twenty Twenty theme? This is because if in case you need to do some changes to your theme of interest and need to delete that theme then you need a backup theme.

Or if in case there is some issue with the site then it is advised to go back to the basic WordPress theme and revert back to the theme you are using. This sounds kind of stupid but we have seen many issues getting solved on its own, kind of some magic.

c) It is also advised that you should not go for those themes which rely too much on plugins. There are some themes like Bimber, which have custom made plugins to extend its functionality.

Why do we say this? Well, this is because of the reason that we have seen many theme developers abandoning their themes after a few years due to declining sales or general interest or any other reason.

So it is better to go for a basic theme which has a good design and then you may enhance its functionality with plugins on your own, of your choice and requirements.

d) Try to get a lightweight WordPress theme. If the theme is packed with features and is file heavy then it will eventually make your website slow. That is not a good thing. So keep this in mind too.

e) Some people, just to save some money, get themes from websites offering paid themes for free. These themes generally have security holes in them and can affect your website in the worst manner. Avoid doing so at any cost.

These themes also are known as nulled themes might contain advertising links to other websites, code injection of any kind or even viruses. So make sure you do not use them at all.

So these are some of the few things that you must keep in mind before you finalize a theme for your blog.

Hope this guide helps you in installing a WordPress theme and also makes you aware of the things that you must not do when you install these themes.

If you need any help or if we have left any points here then do mention it in the comments below.

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