WordPress has thousands of free and premium themes to choose from, they give you a great place to start you website design. Good ones have different styles or skins within the theme that group the styles further, and then it’s up to you or your designer to further customize to make it just right for your business. If you use WordPress – you’ll want to choose a WordPress theme that fits your developmental & design needs. There are thousands of free themes and thousands of premium themes. I strongly suggest finding a premium theme that gives you more design control and lots more features – even if you don’t use them all to start, you’ll be happy you’ve got them later down the line. With so many different niches out there, each with its own needs and styles, the market for multi-purpose WordPress themes has really grown. More developers are working really hard on versatile themes that will fit any need and be modified infinitely.
The first thing to consider when selecting a theme is – the design or look. Most want a beautiful clean look that will suit their particular business. To make the theme even more appealing, virtually everything should be customizable. The level of control over each individual aspect of web pages allows each user to create a custom experience. Insert backgrounds, design your own headers, and even use of a theme’s layout options to streamline the creation process. Custom post types allowing you to create your own designs and styles that are completely unique. Nobody wants to have a site that looks like everybody else. To be successful, you need a website design that stands out from the crowd – and really good theme allows you to create that unique look – with ease.
Things to consider when choosing your WordPress theme:
- Price – most good ones are under $75 (less than one hour of developer time)
- Visual design – how good does it look right out of the box?
- Is it SEO friendly?
- Social media integration
- It it responsive?
- Browser compatibility
- Support Forums
- Documentation & manuals
- Are there video tutorials?
- How many different designs are there within theme?
- Number of users? – more popular themes are better supported
- Speed – how fast loading is the theme?
- Extendability, third-party plugins – like a shopping cart or membership site?
- Coding requirements – will you need to get into any code modification?
- Dashboard interface – how intuitive is dashboard for a new user?
- Added premium plugins, like sliders and Visual Composer
One of the main selling points of this theme is what they call the Stacks. While this term might be new to you, it’s simply a way X chose to call their 4 different design styles – think of Stacks like as templates. Each Stack comes with unlimited layout options and a whole lot of other features that give you the ability to create your own truly unique design.
X currently has 4 main stacks:
- Integrity – This particular stack was designed as a multi-purpose theme. It has elegant layouts, suitable for business sites, portfolio sites, and even personal sites/blogs. It offers 10 different homepage layouts. This site is using Integrity.
- Renew – The Renew stack follows the recent trend of flat web design. If you are looking for a theme that also features very clean lines and does so without clutter, this is the stack that will suit your needs.
- Icon – It offers 10 different homepage layouts and each of them is very different than what you normally see in WordPress themes. The layouts are bolder while still elegant and clean looking.
- Ethos – Last stack on the list, currently offers only 3 different homepage layouts and is most suitable for magazine-style blogs looking for a unique layout.
X Theme extensions X Theme comes packed with its own set of extensions (think regular WordPress plugins) that extends the theme’s functionality. Some are plugins that most users are already familiar with like Visual Composer and Slider Revolution, while others are unique to the theme, such as Content Dock, White Label, Terms Of Service, Cornerstone (recently replaced X Shortcodes), Custom 404s, and more.
Customization Most themes comes bundled with a separate Options panel, or Customization panel that can be a little clunky. X Theme has gone a step further than most theme developers and integrated the customization options straight into WordPress Customizer. This makes it easy to customize every aspect of your chosen stack from typography and colors to widgets. The coolest part of this feature is the ability to see the changes live before actually saving them or making them live.
WooCommerce Today, more and more WordPress website owners are looking to integrate an e-commerce option straight into their theme. With WooCommerce being one of the most popular e-commerce solutions on the market, this makes it extremely easy to set up a shop on your site. You get 4 different store layouts ready to go.
- Retina ready
- Bbpress & BuddyPress ready
- Fully responsive on different devices
- Custom backgrounds that can include background slideshows – not just images or patterns
- Google fonts
- The ability to import demo content and layout for any chosen stack
- Extensive documentation & member support
- PSD files
- SEO optimization
- Clean code
- And more about X theme
It’s called Total for a reason – packed with all the features you need in one beautiful and powerfully responsive theme. Total has drag and drop page building, live customization, unlimited color options, premium sliders and tons more. Total has already passed the 13,000 sales mark on Themeforest and comes to us from WPExplorer, a team of developers that has a great reputation and been in the WordPress business for awhile.
Total is a multi-purpose themes and has some special features that help to set it apart from the competition. The first thing, is its look. Total gets everything right in this department, offering a beautiful and clean look that should suit a wide variety of users. To make this theme even more appealing, virtually everything is customizable. The level of control you have over each individual aspect of your web pages is really amazing. You can insert your own custom backgrounds, design your own headers, and even make use of the theme’s fluid or fixed layouts to streamline the creation process. Even custom post types come with many different options, allowing you to create your own designs and styles that are completely unique. Nobody wants to have a site that looks like the rest. In order to succeed, you need designs that stand out from the crowd and Total will allow you to create these unique looks with ease.
Visual Composer The theme also comes with one of the most frequently-used and popular plugins on the WordPress platform: Visual Composer. This is a drag and drop page builder plugin, essentially allowing you to click on individual page elements and place them around the page in any way you see fit. This sort of page builder is especially attractive for novice users or site owners who simply don’t have the time to spend editing lines of code and scrolling through pages of options. With the Visual Composer plugin and the huge array of easy-to-adjust settings available with the Total theme, you can make a great-looking site in mere minutes.
Plugin Support Another big thing everyone has to consider when installing a new theme is the support it offers for plugins. WordPress is all about plugins, with a vast library of tools available to give your site additional functionality and features. You need a theme that works with these plugins so that you won’t be forced to deal with unwanted compatibility errors. Fortunately, Total is fully optimized to work with all of the most popular plugins you could ever hope to use on WordPress.
The list of compatible plugins includes the likes of WooCommerce for buying and selling products and service via your site, the WordPress Multilingual Plugin which can translate your content in a multitude of foreign languages to broaden your site’s exposure, the popular forum discussion plugin bbPress and the leading search engine optimization (SEO) plugin Yoast SEO, which can help to boost your site up the search engine listings.
Not only does the theme support some of the best plugins available, it also offers some of them completely free when you decide to install it. Total also comes with the popular Templatera, Layer Slider and Slider Revolution plugins to make your site creation experience easier and more enjoyable than ever before. Templatera gives you control over who can access the pages on your site and will be a welcome addition to many site owners. Slider Revolution and Layer Slider allow you to create your own slides and animate them. These plugins offer you whole new types of customization and normally come with their own price tag, but with Total you’ll get them all for free – and that’s a savings you should consider.
Custom Post Types Some other neat features of Total include the huge array of custom post types. You can create your own post types for a wide variety of uses, including support for media files like videos and images. You can also make staff posts to share information about your staff or company, or a testimonials page to display some of the positive experiences you and your customers have shared.
Installing and configuring Total shouldn’t pose any problems for the majority of users. Whether you have plenty of years of technical experience behind you or are just looking for a theme that can be up-and-running in minutes, Total will work for you. The theme uses WordPress importer to allow you to check out some sample data to see if the theme works for you ahead of purchase. All of the various customization options are well laid-out and run through the WordPress Theme Customizer.
This means you can check out a preview of the changes you make before you publish them, preventing any mistakes from being made. Overall, this is a very versatile multi-purpose theme that has been designed with a great degree of care and attention. It comes with some fantastic plugins and offers a great degree of flexibility. Total will work on a wide array of sites and is definitely one of the most attractive themes available right now.
Choose a theme that will reflect your brand
There are a lot of great multi-purpose themes out there, but X and Total have some special features that help to set them apart. I have been using these two themes for the last year or so – they are modern, well developed & coded, look great, and offer so much versatility & functionality, and both offer great support. They adapt extremely well for all sorts of business sites. The ability to import demo content for a particular layout makes a great starting point when you would like to achieve the same layout as one of their demos. They both look great and comes with a ton of functionality. Both are relatively user-friendly and gives an excellent level of control over how things look. For the average user with very little designing and WordPress experience, these themes will likely present a few early challenges. It takes a little time to learn how to use it all, but they won’t leave you hanging – with all of the documentation & videos available to learn from.
Speaking as a web designer; both of these themes offer a great starting point for creating a very professional website — and offers you a ton of different functionality to work and grow with. I’ve tried lots of different themes (from ThemeForest) and these are two of the best (i.e. great support, documentation, and training) — the amount of documentation and training that comes with these two themes is impressive – and a lot more than is offered by most themes!
Priced at $59 for Total, and $63 for the X theme are both great deals – considering everything you get.
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