Last time I published a post on ‘how to create your website using WordPress beginner guide’,and touched briefly on ‘themes and plugins’. In this tutorial I will briefly discuss themes with its basic functions in web development while plugin will be covered in the upcoming tutorial which I am preparing now. So lets find out what theme is all about in WordPress website development.

What is a theme?

In WordPress, a theme is a collection of files that work together to produce a graphical interface with an underlying unifying design for a weblog. These files are called template files. It is structured in different design elements to display or change the look and functionality of a website in a way you want. Built by software developers by coding in computer language so that front end users or web developers can go about changing colors, font size, modify and change images, etc to style the look or layout of your website according to your desired choice and styles. It comes into full functioning in your website only when it is installed and activated straight from WordPress admin dash board.

Lets further dig in full detail  

When it comes to WordPress Website building, users may install and switch among different themes. Themes allow users to change the look and functionality of a WordPress website like I said without altering the code or site content. Every WordPress website requires at least one theme to be present and every theme should be designed using WordPress standards with structured PHP, valid HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language), and Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). Themes may be directly installed using the WordPress “Appearance” administration tool in the dashboard, or theme folders may be copied directly into the themes directory, for example via FTP .The PHP, HTML and CSS found in themes can be directly modified to alter theme behavior, or a theme can be a “child” theme which inherits settings from another theme and selectively overrides features. WordPress themes are generally classified into two categories: free and premium. Many free themes are listed in the WordPress theme directory, and premium themes are available for purchase from marketplaces and individual WordPress developers. WordPress users may also create and develop their own custom themes too.

How to source themes  

Download themes from the WordPress site. WordPress has a large collection of free themes available from the official website. All of the themes on the WordPress site have been checked and inspected for bad code, making the WordPress official site one of the safer places to download themes. If your on a business plan in WordPress, you can install straight from your WordPress admin dash board by choosing from varieties of your choice by clicking appearance, themes ⇒ add new or search from the theme search bar and then select and install. If you are buying theme from outside like Theme forest or Ocean WP, you can easily download and upload it as zip file to install on your WordPress website.

How to Install WordPress Themes

There are two ways to install WordPress themes.
⦁ If you found your WordPress theme at the official theme directory, you can install it right from your WordPress dashboard.
⦁ If you purchased a premium theme or found a free theme somewhere else, you’ll need to install your WordPress theme by uploading a ZIP file of your theme to WordPress.

Here’s how it is done.

To install a theme from
Go to Appearance → Themes in your dashboard
Click Add New


Here, you will see all the themes you have currently installed in your application. To add another one, simply click on the Add New button.

On the next page there are two ways to add a new theme. You can either use the search field which will return results from the theme directory or you can upload a theme from your local hard drive.

Choose and Install a theme from the official WordPress theme directory

The easiest way to install themes to your WordPress site is if they are listed in the official themes directory. This allows you to search for the theme you need directly from your site admin page. Each theme in the official directory has to have Tags that describe its functionality allowing you to easily search for the right theme.

If you know the theme’s name, you can simply search for it.

You will now see all themes that meet your search. Hover over any of them and you will see two options – to see a demo of the theme or to install it. Once you choose which theme you want to use for your site, press the blue Install button.

Wait until the Install button changes to Activate
Click the Activate button
Your new theme is now live!

2. This method is only suitable for web developers if you are to go through cpanel. Install the theme using cPanel. If your host has cPanel installed, you can change the theme using the WordPress plugin. You will need to have the theme file downloaded to your computer before you add it using cPanel. If you are hosting your site through Godaddy, Hostgator or Blue Host etc, they will provide you a cpanel link with login details for you to work in your own files.

  • Open the cPanel File Manager. Navigate to the Themes folder, located in the wp-content folder.
  • Upload your theme file.
  • Extract the file by selecting it in cPanel and then clicking on “Extract File Contents”.

If you are installing the theme in a correct format WordPress will confirm in your screen that ‘installation has been completed or successful’. If it is giving information like installation unsuccessful then, I advise you see ‘how to videos’ on YouTube about correct WordPress theme installation to help you install correctly on your website or either way, inbox me or any of the WordPress website developer.

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