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How to Install a WordPress Theme.


how to install a wordpress theme

Tutorial Overview.

This tutorial will explain the difference between a WordPress theme and a WordPress template, the different types of WordPress themes, 2 ways to install a WordPress theme from the admin area of your website and how to manually install a WordPress theme via FTP.

Quickies.

Difference Between a WordPress Theme and a Template?

A WordPress theme is a collection of files that define the look and feel of a website. A theme controls things like colors, fonts, page layouts, blog styles, etc. It is kind of like a parent to a template. A WordPress template provides the layout and structure for a single page of a website. A template is just one small part of a theme. You could use multiple page templates on your website but they would all live in the theme. By default, all themes come with templates but you can always add new templates to your theme if needed.

Types of WordPress Themes.

There are basically just two types of WordPress themes, ones that cost money and ones that don’t. There are different ways to install these themes depending on which type you choose, so for the sake of this tutorial I am going to break them into three categories:

Free Themes from the WordPress Theme Directory.

These include all of the themes in the WordPress.org Theme Directory and they are all free. If you use one of these themes, you can search for and install it directly from the admin area of your website.

3rd Party Free Themes.

This category includes all free themes that are not listed in the WordPress Theme Directory. Since they are not in the directory you must either upload them to your website or upload them via FTP.

Themes That Cost Money.

These themes are not free but they often have more advanced features that will make your life easier while you build your website. They also must be uploaded to your website through the admin area or via FTP.

divi theme banner

How to Install a WordPress Theme from the Admin Area of Your Website.

  1. Login to the admin area of your website.
  2. In the admin sidebar, click Appearance > Themes.

wordpress themes

  1. In the upper left of the page, click Add New.

add new theme

  1. This is the WordPress Theme Directory. You can sort the themes at the top of the page.

wordpress theme directory

  1. If you know what features you want on your website, I suggest using the Feature Filter function.

wordpress filter features

  1. Once you find the theme you want to use, click Install.

install wordpress theme

  1. After you install the theme you can activate it immediately. If you are not ready to activate it yet, you can do so later from the dashboard at Appearance > Themes.

How to Upload a WordPress Theme Directly in the Admin Area.

  1. Find the theme you want to use. It can be a paid-for theme or a free theme but it must be in a .zip file for this method to work.
  2. Here are a few great places to find themes:
  1. Once you have your theme, login to the admin area of your website.
  2. In the admin sidebar, click Appearance > Themes.

wordpress themes

  1. In the upper left of the page, click Add New.

add new theme

  1. Click Upload Theme.

add themes

  1. Upload the theme and click Install Now.

upload wordpress theme

  1. You can activate it now or you can do it later from your dashboard at Appearance > Themes.

How to Manually Install a WordPress Theme via FTP.

  1. You can use a paid-for theme or a free theme with this method.
  2. Here are a few great places to find themes:
  1. Once you have your theme picked out, place it somewhere on your computer and unzip it.
  2. Make an FTP connection to your website. Instructions if needed: How to Make an FTP Connection with FileZilla.
  3. When you have made a connection, navigate here: wp-content > themes.
  4. Upload the theme file to the theme directory.
  5. Login to the admin area of the website.
  6. In the admin sidebar, click Appearance > Themes.

wordpress themes

  1. You should see your theme here. Click Activate.

activate theme

 

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