If you’ve browsed the web with any regularity — and given that you’re here, you clearly have — you’ve got some familiarity with WordPress.
After all, the platform has nearly a 60 percent market share among content management systems.
That means there’s a lot of competition and noise when it comes to choosing the best WordPress themes. But it also means that anyone can take advantage of this powerful platform for themselves.
Here are seven favorite themes to help you get started.
1. Clean Business Theme by Catch Themes
Clean Business is one of the best WordPress themes for small businesses.
Features include excellent responsive design (important when mobile is taking up increasing user time), HTML5 and CSS3 compatibility. It also has an array of custom sliders and widgets to make building your site the way you want it a cinch.
The best part? The pro version of the theme is just $59 and with it comes terrific support.
When you’re a small business trying to gin up a professional-looking website on a tight budget, you can’t underrate the value of good support.
2. XStore WooCommerce Ready Theme
XStore is probably the king of online shop themes. In fact, it almost does it a disservice to call it merely a “theme.”
XStore is completely integrated with WooCommerce and offers more than fifty theme stylings to fit your business niche. It’s kind of like having Etsy in a box, except the users aren’t beholden to someone else’s platform.
The customization options are often the chart, but most important for an eCommerce theme, its WooCommerce integration “just works.”
If your intent is to sell things online and you want an online store in a box, XStore is the theme for you.
3. Curiosity Responsive Newspaper Theme
If you grew up reading “The Gray Lady” (an old nickname for the New York Times) or otherwise admiring the long tabloid newspaper format, Curiosity will take you back in time.
Optimized for the modern web, Webzakt emulates the simple pleasure of cracking open the paper with your morning coffee. The layout options are superb, with feature callout sections above the header as well as a tight organizational layout beneath the fold.
There are five different post formats and the theme itself is very SEO-friendly, making it ideal for a small-town periodical project, a museum webpage, a quirky fashion blog, or even a small fiction press.
4. Sydney Business Theme
Another business theme option, Sydney gets a nod here because of its versatility and beauty. It has an exceptional front page slider and lovely animations (love those parallax backgrounds!). It’s perfect for the business person who’s a bit of an aesthete.
As with Clean Business, Sydney’s theme makers pride themselves on their fast, responsive support.
What makes it enticing for the novice user is its use of front page blocks. These enable creators to easily move around page elements to make the site both look unique and fit each business’s needs.
Finally, Sydney shines with one thing that doesn’t get talked about enough when it comes to separating out the best WordPress themes from the rest of the bunch: It’s well-coded.
The difference between good and bad theme coding isn’t often visible on the surface, but it can make the difference between a theme that works now and a total website rebuild down the line as a business grows.
5. ionMAG Magazine Theme
Have you dreamed of having your own fully fledged magazine website? Your personal Teen Vogue or personal Rolling Stone?
Enter ionMAG, a remarkably powerful magazine theme by tagDiv. ionMag couples a clean visual aesthetic with a rich Theme Editor that allows drag and drop customization on the front end as well as the simple incorporation of custom coding.
ionMAG’s only drawback is that it’s not a “set it and forget it” theme. Serious users will have to put some time into getting the theme’s look and layout exactly as they want it.
But to achieve the result of a professional-looking magazine website for a fraction of the effort you’d pay a developer, it’s worth it.
6. Divi 3.0 Theme Framework by Elegant Themes
Compared to the other themes mentioned in this review, Divi is a different kettle of fish.
While many of these themes incorporate visual editors as part of the theme, Divi 3.0. is all visual builder. That means you can build any kind of WordPress site you want from the ground up without any coding knowledge.
Divi is far from the only theme framework of this type, but it is one of the richest and simplest to use. It’s good for portfolios, shops, marketing websites, full-fledged businesses — anything you’d use a website for. It even has built-in features to help your business get leads.
The sole drawback to Divi is that once you buy into their ecosystem, it’s challenging to move away from it. There’s too much custom code involved to make porting off Divi an easy task.
7. Hestia: the Best WordPress Themes Are … Free?
The best things in life may be free, but this usually isn’t the case with the best WordPress themes. Hestia is one exception to the usual rule.
A simple one-page theme based on Google’s Material Design guidelines, it’s one of the most beautiful modern themes a user can get. Setup time is minimal with Hestia, making it ideal for someone who just wants to get a clean, professional-looking website up in under a day.
Hestia is also compatible with page builder plugins for users who want more flexibility and don’t want to mess with code. There’s also a pro version with increased functionality for a nominal fee.
Ready, Set, Write!
Now that you’ve read about seven of the best WordPress themes out there, hopefully, you’re able to make a selection.
If you found a theme here that was close, but not quite right, it’s a good idea to take a look at the theme creators’ other themes. Maybe they’ll have a similar one that works for you or are able to do custom work (which is often the case).
We think WordPress is the best possible platform choice, but if you’re still unsure, check out our guide on how to make a website.