If you’re new to the world of WordPress, learning how to install wordpress themes is definitely one of the most essential and basic skills that you will have to learn after you learn how to install WordPress.
Choosing a theme for your blog is kind of like choosing an outfit – you want to pick something that will work for you. There are countless free themes available on the internet, which can be found simply by searching “free wordpress themes”.
So why would you pay for a theme when you can get it for free? One of the biggest advantages of paying for a premium theme is support. Paid or premium themes are maintained by designers on an ongoing basis. If ever you find yourself having technical diffculties, they will assist you, usually through some kind of help desk or forum.
Free themes, in many cases, are maintained by individuals who sometimes lose interest in the maintenance of their themes and do not always offer support. So basically, if you run into problems, you may find yourself on your own. Free themes may not always keep up with WordPress updates which may leave your site in limbo.
Please see Choosing the Right Theme for your Blog for more information.
Ok, so back to the issue at hand…how to install a wordpress theme…there are two ways to install a wordpress theme – through your dashboard or via FTP (File Transfer Protocol). For the sake of simplicity, I will show you the dashboard method, which in my opinion is much easier for beginners.
How to Install WordPress theme through your WordPress dashboard.
Note: your theme will need to be a .zip file in order to use this method. Whenever you buy a theme (or download a free one), it is delivered in a .zip format so just save it somewhere on your computer (do not unzip).
- Log in to your WordPress dashboard once you’ve installed WordPress (which is when you would have gotten your user name and password). You can do this by typing http://yourdomain.com/wp-admin in your address bar.
- Once in your dashboard, click on “Appearance” in the menu on the left side which will open up a menu and then click on “Themes”.
- Click on “Add New”.
- Click on “Upload Theme”.
- Click on “Browse” and find your theme’s location on your computer, then click “Install Now” (remember your theme must be a .zip file).
- Then click “Activate” to make it your current theme.
Voila! You’ve just installed and activated your WordPress Theme! You can view it by hovering over your site name in the WordPress dashboard and clicking on “View Site”.
Are you just starting your blog but don’t know where to start? Check out my easy-to-follow post How to Start a WordPress Blog.
I’ve also included a few other relevant articles/tutorials: