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Going through our Start A Blog guide step by step, here i will guide you through the proper installation of a WordPress theme IE how to install WordPress theme in a proper way. As you might already come to know that, you can choose your favorite theme from thousands of theme available for WordPress.

But here we will discuss the accurate methods of installing as well as deleting the WordPress themes.

Okay ! So here are the most common methods :

1 Browse > Download and Install WordPress Theme. (Themes available at WordPress repository)

2 Upload and Install WordPress Theme. (Themes from third-party sources)

3 FTP (Using software like FileZilla)

Lets walk through all the methods one by one.

Different methods of installing a WordPress theme [Step By Step].

Search and Install Themes From Dashboard :

This is the easiest method to install a free WordPress theme. However, you can only browse the themes available at the Official WordPress Theme repo.

  • Login to your WordPress Admin Dashboard.
  • Go to appearance > Themes.
  • On the top left side, click on > Add New

Now browse through the themes and find the theme that suits your needs. After you find the one for you,

  • click > Install.

After the installation is completed,

  • click > Activate.

Now give yourself a high5. You did it.

You can also preview your theme before activating it but sometimes it does does not not work properly. You can use plugins like Theme Test Drive Plugin to test your theme before going live.

(Themes downloaded From Third-Party Environment)

Upload and Install :

There are plenty of free themes available at the Official WordPress Theme Repo but what to do when you didn’t find your perfect theme there. Don’t worry you are not alone. Most of the bloggers opt to premium WordPress themes from third party sites.

You can also find free themes on other sites but is always recommended to use the themes from Official WordPress Theme Repo when it comes to free themes. Coming to the point, let me tell you the process of installing a WordPress theme downloaded from a third-party site.

  • Download the theme in zip format from the site.
  • Login to your Admin Area
  • Go to Appearance > Themes > Add New
  • Click on Upload Theme
  • Locate the zip file on your computer and click upload.
  • Click on Preview if you want to preview your site otherwise click on Activate.

Install WordPress Theme Using FTP :

Their are certain situations when you are not able to install your theme through WordPress dashboard due to some server-security reasons. Maybe uploading your theme from the dashboard showing some error. In that case FTP method comes into play. You need a FTP software like FileZilla to access your site through FTP. Here is the procedure :

  • Unzip the downloaded theme zip file using software like WinRAR.
  • Login to your FTP manager
  • Locate to wp-content/Themes and upload the unzipped file.

All done ! Now you can preview your theme or activate it from your WordPress dashboard.

  • Dashboard > Appearance > Themes

This time you will see the theme you have installed through FTP . Simply, activate the theme and enjoy !

Lost Access To Your Dashboard Due To Faulty Theme ?

Sometimes, you  accidently install a theme with broken-codes, and you are not even able to access your dashboard. Yup..it happens. In that case you have to access your site through FTP  to delete the culprit theme and install a new theme.

Uninstall or Permanently Delete the WordPress Themes :

So here you are, a full graduate about installing the WordPress themes. Now I will tell you how to uninstall or permanently delete the themes which are not of your use. This involves some simple steps below :

  • Dashboard > Appearance > Themes
  • Click > Delete to delete any theme.

You can also do this by FTP method :

  • Login to your FTP Manager > Locate to wp-content/Themes
  • Delete the theme.

Never delete your current theme in use as your site may go down. Off course, you can settle it later but it is better to avoid the unnecessary hassle.

If you have still question about installing or deleting themes by any of the methods describe above you can comment in the comment section below.

The best part about WordPress is that it is the most flexible and customizable CMS (Control Management System) around the web which empowers more than 60 million+ websites.There are tons of plugins and themes for optimizing and decorating your blog. Well, this can be the worst part (in other way) for some novice/beginner bloggers as they can get seriously confuse over the various premium and free options out there for plugins as well as themes.

Whether, one should go with premium themes or stick with the free ones ?

This question hold its place place in every WordPress animal’s mind when he step-in to the WordPress forest. Which one between the premium and free WordPress themes, is best for me ? And the answer to this question knows only the person asking it. Yeah, you read it right. Only you can tell which theme is perfect for you.

Premium Vs Free WordPress Themes [Comparison,pros & cons]

Premium Themes

Very fair, the themes which comes along with a price tags are the premium ones.

Pros

1. Ultimate Back-up (support):

This is the most important feature of any theme and off course, premium themes comes with support whether its –  forums, email, phone and in many other ways.

Okay  so you can spend 50+ hours to customize your theme according to your needs, or you can just pay a few bucks and utilize those 50 hours in writing and blogging (choice is yours).

2. Advance Functionality :

Premium themes are fully customizable. They are less with all the advance features which can be used without digging into complex coding. Many of them have drag and drop user interface. You can simply drag and drop the layout elements without touching the coding.

3.Frequent Update Cycle :

WordPress is frequently  updating CMS and very often we come to see some major updates. So its very important for a website owner to survive those updates and remain up-to-date with the WordPress environment. Premium WordPress themes are more sensitive to WordPress core changes and updates and thus more secure and reliable option.

4. Out-of-the-Box Appearance :

They said

Don’t fit yourself in the crowd if you are born to be stand-out.

And if you are willing to stand out from the rest of the crowd and create a unique website go with the premium themes, as they are not very common among bloggers and  have unique layouts.

5. Inbuilt SEO :

If appropriate theme used, WordPress theme can enhance the overall SEO and performance of your site. Premium themes tend to have bug-free and neat & clean coding which ultimately contribute to faster loading. Also you can ditch your whole gang of SEO plugins as the premium themes have inbuilt SEO options.

Cons

1.Expensive :

The biggest factor which comes between a blogger and a premium theme is – cost. Off course, cost matter.  Price for good Premium themes usually starts from 30$ and can be as high as more than 700$. Whoa ! Well that’s true.

NOTE : You may still have to pay for the license/year for further up-coming years even if you have purchased the basic package.

2. Overloaded Features :

You may be wondering, how features can be a disadvantage of any theme. Well, read it again, I said overload of features. Usually what happens, in order to sustain the competition in the market, most of the developers (not all of them) jam-packed their themes with several features, which maybe you don’t need.

This can be considered as cons by two means :

(1.) Your theme may have higher potential for “theme bloat”.

(2.) And if the above is not the case with your theme, you are still paying for the functions and features you are never going to use.

Free WordPress Themes

The most amazing thing about free WordPress themes is ……..think-think… they are FREE. And we just love that word, don’t we ?

Pros

1. Free Of Cost :

They are free and hence everyone can use them. Okay so here is the procedure –

Download
Use
Don’t like it ?
Download another.
Use.
And the process goes on and on.

2. Right Within Your Dashboard :

Go to your dashboard > Appearance > Themes > explore the world of free WordPress themes.

3. Compatible With Most Plugins :

Ironically, free WordPress themes are highly compatible when it comes to plugins. That is why because all the themes available in the WordPress repo are certainly gone through a review process and are made to meet certain standards.

Premium themes have their own inbuilt functionality and thus the developers don’t really care about the plugin’s compatibility from outside environment.

Cons

1. Lack Top-Notch Support :

Free WordPress themes lack the top-notch support provided by the premium ones. If you have any query regarding the free theme, you are only dependable on the WP codex and and some other forums for help. Its pretty obvious that you have to wait for several days to knock-out a simple bug. I mean come-on, who will as a theme designer spend hours in playing question-answer  on support forums that don’t earn them a single penny.

2. Slow Update Cycle :

Free WordPress themes are not updated very often. As a WordPress user you should know that WordPress is all about updates. Updates are very important in order to make improvements, fix various bugs and boost security. But most of the free themes designer fails in this department.

3. Security Vulnerabilities :

Most of the premium themes are rarely up-to-date and hence more suspicious to security risk. The free themes available at WordPress them repo are maintain up to certain standard but if you download a free theme from any other source, there is fair chance that  it contain malware along with other phishing codes.

 4. Nothing Is Free :

Nothing is free . At least, not on this planet. But not everything going to cost you in dollar and bucks. And if you are using a free WordPress theme, you are already paying the price in terms of SEO, security and many other ways.

Still getting confused. Lets make it more simple for you. Ask some simple question from yourself .

  1. Are you a going to blog just for fun ?
  2. Is blogging just a hobby to you ?

If your answer to the above questions is YES, you should stick to the free WordPress themes Lets play it one more time.

Answer the questions again.

  1. Are you a serious blogger ?
  2. Do you want to expand your business on the web ?
  3. Are you going to use blogging for fame and branding ?
  4. Do you want to make money from blogging ?

If your answer for any of the above questions is YES, you should ditch your free theme and go for a premium one.

Image optimization is something which is often ignored by the web-owners specially the newbie bloggers. But when they realize the importance of image optimization on their blog, its already too late. Off course it is a herculean-task to optimize hundreds or may be thousands of images after they realize the importance of image optimization.

So you should start image optimization on your blog from the very beginning.

And if you made the mistake of not optimizing your blog images, start doing from right now.

 

How Things Work Under The Hood

Every image you add to a post or page on your blog has to be downloaded by the users from your hosting servers to their devices.

So the equation is straight forward – More the size of your image. more will be the page load time and less will be the speed of you blog.

Why Do You Need To Optimize Blog Images At All ?

There are loads of reason behind the image optimization.

  • Image optimization can increase your page load times.
  • Slow loading pages can increase your bounce rate as the user leaves your site in frustration.
  • Un-optimized and bulky images increase the size of your pages and ultimately slow down your website. Proper optimization can make a huge difference in speeding up your WordPress site.
  • Large sized and heavy images also increase your bandwidth and hence the hosting expenses.Specially if you have high traffic blog.
  • Large and un-optimized images will end up using more storage on your web-host server which can cost you more money.
  • By using proper optimization practices you can save that bandwidth and storage which ultimately save your web-hosting expenses.

According to a survey conducted by Strangeloop a one-second delay can cost you 11% fewer page views. 16% decrease in customer satisfaction and 7% decrease in sales.

How To Optimize Blog Images?

During the image optimization process you need to focus on three main factors.

    1. Image File Format.
    2. Image Dimensions.
    3. Image Compression.

In the below section you will walk through each image-properties one by one and understand their importance in image optimization. Also you will learn how to deal with these image properties to reduce image size.

1.) Image File Format

There are different types of formats available for images. Some of the most popular are JPEG, JPG, PNG, SVG, GIF image formats.While the bucket is full out there, the formats matter most to bloggers and web-masters are : JPEG(JPG), PNG and sometimes GIF.Lets have a look at them.

A) JPEG (JPG) Format :

(Best For Images With Many Colours)

JPEG is the most popular and most widely use format on the web. JPEGs are recommended for the images with lots of colours and specially digital photography.These types of images are small in size as compared to PNG format.

B) PNG Format :

(For Vector Graphics And Transparent Background)

PNG format is a lossless format which means it is uncompressed and high quality image format therefore have larger file sizes. PNG format is generally used in web-designing elements such as icons.This is specially used for achieving a transparent background effect for an image.

C) GIF Format :

(Best File Format For Animated Files)

GIF image format got in trend a few time ago and become popular in a very small time-period. The main reason behind this is its small size and comfort for animated files.It is best for low quality images which have few colour concentration and therefore have small file sizes.

Use JPEGs for images with variety and lots of colour and use PNG for simple images like screenshots, icons and buttons on your WordPress blog.

 

2.) Image Dimensions

The next thing you need deal with is image dimensions. Generally what most bloggers do is, they download a image from the web and upload it to their blog with default dimension and size.

For example :

You need a 700X300 image for your post. But you download a image which has dimensions 1200X800 and upload as it to your blog post. Now what happens is, that WordPress will load the whole image and ask the browser to squeeze it into 700X300 dimensions.

This one is the most common mistake attempted by the bloggers when it comes to images.

Off course, more the image dimensions more will be the image size.Which lead to slower page loads as your users browsers take more time to download the large & bulky images from your server.

No.. No.. No…Don’t tell me that you resize the height and width of the images in your post editor.Because that doesn’t make any difference at all. The web browsers still loads the original image with original dimensions and then it will be resized. So, your page load time is still gonna INCREASE.

So the best way to handle this problem is to resize the image dimensions before uploading it to your WordPress blog. Generally the stock images downloaded from the web are of large dimensions.

So its better to resize them before uploading and using them on you site. There are various tools online as well as offline for this purpose.

Helpful Tools :

These are some tools which can help you through this step.

Just check the content area width of your blog and resize images perfectly according to it.

You can insert images as much small as your text and as large as your whole blog area according to your requirements.But to get your image picked up social networking platforms like Facebook, Google+,Twitter and many others your image size should be 200X200 at minimum.

 

3.) Image Compression

This is the last but most important image optimization method in this tutorial.

What is image compression?

Image compression is a method to reduce the image size by removing and stripping out its unused colour profiles and unnecessary meta data (date, time, camera etc.) from images. Obliviously the quality of the image will decrease as the size decrease.

So its very important to make a proper balance between the image size and image quality. By using right combination you do not even enhance your users experience but on the other hand also save storage space and server bandwidth (which indirectly means…… money).

How To Compress Your Images To Reduce Their Size?

You can compress your images online, offline, before uploading to your blog and even after uploading to your blog.

There are are various offline tools & software you can install locally on your machine and compress your images before uploading them.

Some Offline Tools for image compression are :

There are also online tools available for image compression. The procedure is simple and similar for all. You upload an image which is to be compressed and then after processing download the reduced and light version of the image from their websites.

Some Online Tools for image compression are :

In WordPress you can also optimize and compress your images after uploading them to your blog with the help of WordPress plugins. There are tons of plugins out there in official WordPress repo, free as well as premium to accomplish this task.

Some WordPress plugins for image optimization :

 

#Interesting Fact : WordPress automatically compresses your JPEG files to 90% of its original quality, without even telling you. YUP !

Final Thoughts :

Image optimization is very important for, say —
  • saving server storage space
  • saving bandwidth
  • decreasing page load times
  • increasing your website speed.
  • user satisfaction
  • ……..seriously ! you still need more reasons. Shut Up!

So start implementing these methods on your blog images an see the difference on your own.Hope this tutorial served its purpose and educated you enough to take care of image optimization on your website/ blog.

As always, like and share this article with your near & dear ones.

If you have any question as well as any advise regarding this article, you can drop a line below in the comment section.

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