Feb 9, 2011
One of the first hurdles that I came across in WordPress was how to chose a theme. For WordPress.com hosted blogs this isn’t such a great problem as there are a limited amount of themes available – only about 106!
I have used the following free WordPress.com themes – Titan (The Red Horse Blogs), & Fleshy (Andy Britnell WordPress.com test site) both of which look clean and professional. I am sure you will find a free one that suits your blog and later you can always upgrade to a self-hosted site and find a more professional theme that fits your market and style more closely.
When I decided to have a self-hosted site the possibilities seemed endless. There are many free themes available and you can get snowblinded by all the different colours, layouts and features that each theme has.
Eventually I almost lost the will to live! Another case of too much choice forcing you choose something inappropriate or not making a decision at all. Eventually I had to set up a list of criteria in order to shortlist the themes that were going to work.
These are my guidelines:
1. No white on dark text – despite it saving energy it is just too straining on the eyes and unclear
2. Flexible layout for every page (not restricted to just 2 or 3 columns) which means you can have static pages with a different layout which can act as landing pages
3. Style to fit market niche – knocks out most photography and magazine type themes for my clients
4. Ability to change fonts, backgrounds, header, colours etc. Allows you to differentiate from other blogs with same theme
5. Easy to link to social media to make your blog the hub of online activity
6. Updated and supported theme that is popular – you don’t want your theme to wither and die
7. Theme that links with content. A personal blog can be more funky than a business blog and a magazine or sport blog can be busier
Having said that once you know the rules you can always break a few to give your blog a design and look with an edge!
What do you look for when you are choosing a theme for your blog?