How to find FREE and GREAT WordPress themes

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Posted 12 Sep 2007 in WordPress

Everyone wants to have fresh and unique WordPress themes.

There are tons of designers out there who can design a custom template for you, which will cause you to be the envy of every WordPress blogger on the block!

But, if you are like me and working on a budget, don’t despair!

There are tons of GREAT and FREE WordPress themes available for you, too!

Naturally, the first place to look for WordPress themes is the WordPress Theme Viewer, which is the official repository for WordPress themes. You can sort the themes on the site by any combination of 25 different criterion, including number of columns, color, widget-ready, and location of sidebar.

Because the WordPress Theme Viewer tracks the popularity of submitted of themes, you can see at a glance how popular a theme is, so that you can be sure to select either a highly popular theme or a theme that no one is using, but is incredibly cool!

The bonus in picking a theme that no one else (or few people) are using is that you will appear to be a trend setter – rather than a follower – in the grand ole scheme of using WordPress themes to personalize your site!

Another way to find GREAT WordPress themes is to look at the footers and sidebars of WordPress powered websites. Look for the “Powered by WordPress” text or links on the page, as well as search the source code of the page to find out whether or not a website you like is powered by WordPress. To do this, press CTRL+U in Firefox; and in Internet Explorer, press View > Search).

Search for meta name="generator" content="WordPress xxx" near the top of the source code. Be sure that you see this text. This is how you know if the site you are looking at runs off of WordPress CMS. Note: The xxx will be replaced by the version of WordPress the site is running. As of today, it is 2.2.3.

Once you’ve established that the site you are viewing is in fact using a WordPress theme, visit the link to the theme author’s site. Many WordPress theme developers create several themes, so you can look at their sites, download and test new themes.

Or, look at the comments for the theme’s site and pick out other blogs to visit and see where they get their themes from by repeating the instructions above!

This can be time consuming, but when you think about finding a theme that fits your personality and your site’s brand, it is worth it!

The third and final way to find GREAT and FREE WordPress themes is to visit Weblog Tools Collection’s “WordPress Templates WordPress Skins WordPress Themes” Category. I’ve subscribed to the Weblog Tools Collection feed, so I get an update every day about new themes that are released for WordPress.

This gives me an opportunity to check out the new themes before they hit the big time – and there are always a few gems in there!

A way to find WordPress themes that I do not really utilize is using search engines. Some WordPress theme developers have taken to creating sponsored themes, which mean that in order for you to use the theme you must leave hidden links or advertising banners in the code.

The most important thing when looking for a FREE and GREAT WordPress them is whether or not the theme is legitimate and whether or not you can take the time to go through every line of code to be sure you aren’t using something malicious or detrimental to your own efforts to monetize your site.


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4 Comments

  1. Usually I use WordPress theme viewer but then I found that BOB and K2 themes are really great and easy to customize, when you finish your work on them – no one even cant find that those are from BOB or K2 (but of course I always leave credit link in footer).

    • I have wanted to use K2 but it seems very bandwidth intensive. Have you noticed anything similar? BOB? Let me know who that is ❗

  2. BOB is Blog Oh Blog: http://www.blogohblog.com/ – there are some very nice themes, I used last one and it’s brilliant and easy to use/customize: Bob v2 or something like this (you can see customized version here: http://www.luckyeveryday.info), more themes from Bob: http://themes.wordpress.net/author/kampit/

    Hope this helps :)

    • I’ll definitely check these out! I like this theme, but I am working on making the sidebar wider. I miss having a wider sidebar :)


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