Step by Step Guide to Install and Activate a WordPress Theme
This topic marks the beginning of a number of tutorials we will be publishing geared towards helping beginners get their WordPress blogs up and running. As an experienced blogger, I understand how intimidating the entire process of blogging can be so my goal here is to make things easier with each step by step process of helping you get started in running and operating a successful WordPress blog.
At this point, you have probably familiarized yourself with the process of starting a blog, and have chosen WordPress as the platform to publish your blog. Excellent choice as WordPress still remains the top publishing platform in 2017. So have no fears as getting your blog published is not as intimidating as you might think.
How to Install a WordPress Theme
There are two main ways of installing a WordPress Theme. You can do this via your WordPress admin area or via FTP. We will be focusing on installing using your WordPress admin dashboard today as it is simply the easiest way to go.
1. You first need to log into your WordPress admin area. Your hosting company should have given you your admin username and login in your welcome email. Or you might be able to get this information from your cpanel account.
2. To install a theme, click the Appearance tab on the left. Then click on Themes. You have now arrived at your Themes page where you should see a number of free themes already available courtesy of WordPress. You can stop here by simply selecting and using one of these themes or you can continue on to upload and use your own Premium Theme. You are also able to search here for more themes.
3. To upload a theme, click the Add New tab at the top of the page. Now click on Upload Theme at the top of the page, select your file, and click Install Now. Remember the zip file of your new theme is what you need to upload here.
How To Activate Your WordPress Theme
1. After your theme has been uploaded, you will have two options – to do a Live Preview or Activate your theme. If you’re sure about your theme, you can go ahead and click Activate, but we typically recommend first doing a Live Preview as this allows you to fix little glitches and errors before going live with your new blog theme.
2. Once you Activate your new theme, you will now see this theme listed as your current active theme where you will be able to make further changes and customizations.
Managing and Customizing Your WordPress Themes
Congrats! As by now, you have uploaded and activated your brand new WordPress Theme. The next step now is to both manage and customize your theme. The good news is that is easier to do these days as most premium themes come equipped with theme customers which make editing your website or blog appearance extremely easy.
1. To manage your WordPress theme, you need to expand the Appearance menu in the WordPress admin Dashboard by putting your cursor on it. Here, you’ll see the Themes and Customize options.
2. Manage – If you’re looking to manage your theme(s), you will click on Themes from the Appearance menu. On this page, you will be able to view all of your current and past themes. You can easily preview your other themes from here and change themes if you wish.
3. Customize – If you prefer to stick with your new or current theme, then you can just click on the Customize button at the bottom of the theme. This will take you to a live preview page allowing you to make a number of key changes to your blog. These changes including the ability to change your website Title and Tagline, change the colors, or even select a new background image. The best part of the live preview is that you will be able to see the changes live before committing to them. Once you are happy with all the changes, you then click on the Save and Publish button so your changes can go live.