How to Install a WordPress Theme


There are countless things to love about using WordPress. The very fact that you can basically design the website of your dreams without having to pay a coder is definitely right up at the top though. One of the key ways WordPress allows you to do this is through its use of themes.

What Is a WordPress Theme?

In many ways, a WordPress theme is just a skin. By this, I mean that it adds the aesthetic layer to your site. If you’ve heard of phone skins before, you understand the idea. You put them on your phone to give it a custom look unique to others.

A WordPress theme is so much more than that though. While it will definitely give your site a look and feel different from any others, it also implies a load of functionality.

This is an important factor to keep in mind. Unless you pick a theme specifically for the sake of looks, you’re actually going to change how the entire site works.

Finding a Theme

WordPress makes it easy to find a theme by offering its own directory. You can search through here and find all kinds of different themes for you site. The other way to do this is by visiting online businesses that specialize in this kind of product. Some will be absolutely free; others will cost you and prices differ significantly.

Installing a WordPress Theme

First, we’ll cover how to install a theme that WordPress offers for free. Go through your admin tool and click “Add New.” There’s a search tool that will allow you to peruse themes by keyword or you can decide to search by category.

When you use the directory, you’ll find thumbnail samples. Hover your mouse over them and you’ll be shown an install button. You can also preview it first or read up on relevant details.

If you decide it’s the right one for you, click “install.” That’s really all there is to it. You get a “success” message and, when you check your site, you’ll notice a new style.

Using Premium Themes

WordPress also offers premium themes. Other sites do as well and although their acquisition method may be a bit different, the following should cover the basics.

Aside from WordPress, companies like StudioPress, ThemeLab, and iThemes also offer commercial themes for sale. As you’d expect, these come with a number of great features.

You start by downloading the .zip file of the theme you’ve chosen. Then go to your WordPress admin area and navigate to Appearance >> Themes. Click on this link.

Now that you are on the themes page, click “Add New” and then “Upload Theme.” Following that, you will be asked to choose a zip file from your computer. Select the one you just purchased and click on “Install Now.”

Just like before, you’ll get a success message once the theme is uploaded. Just click on the “Activate” button and your theme will be installed and ready for the viewing public.

As with most things WordPress has to offer, installing themes couldn’t be easier. Best of all, there are a ton of great options that are 100% free, if your budget doesn’t allow for something with a price.


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