Install WordPress Theme (Template) | Instructions + Child Theme

Many are looking for a WordPress theme installation guide or a simple tutorial on how to install a template, preferably with a child theme. By the way, this works with EVERY hosting provider, whether Strato, 1&1 Ionos, HostEurope, One, Domainfactory, Uniteddomains etc. =)

Do you want to install a WordPress theme?

There are thousands of WordPress themes (free and paid). As a beginner, you might want to try a few of these on your site until you find the right one.

Check out this beginner’s guide for detailed step-by-step instructions on how to install a WordPress theme. We’re going to cover three different ways to install a WordPress template so you can choose the method that works best for you.

Before installing a WordPress theme

Installing a WordPress theme is easy. However, keep in mind that the look and feel of your website will change when you activate a new theme. If you are switching from an existing theme, you should check out our checklist to do before changing WordPress theme.

Installing a WordPress theme on a new site is good to go.

It’s that easy to install a WordPress theme yourself!

Installing a WordPress template is quick and easy if you know how and what the right process is.

Just watch the video:

And it’s that easy: Install WordPress theme (template) + child theme clean and safe

You don’t have to be afraid because installing WordPress themes manually without FTP is really easy with this guide / tutorial and also fast. In addition, I will show you how to install the child theme cleanly and update-safe.

To the best wordpress theme*

Article and video about the BeTheme:

Best WordPress Theme for WordPress Websites – The BeTheme

Install a theme using the WordPress Admin Theme Search

If you want to install a free WordPress theme from the WordPress.org Themes directory, the easiest way is to use the built-in theme search function.

  1. The first thing you need to do is log into your WordPress admin panel. Next, go to the Appearance » Themes page (Appearance > Themes) and click the Add New button.
  2. On the next screen, you can choose from: Featured Layouts, Popular WordPress Themes, Latest WordPress Themes, Search for a Specific Theme, or Search for Themes with Specific Features.
  3. You can sort topics by role by clicking the Feature Filter button. For example, you can sort topics by topic, specific features, and layout.

Based on your search, you’ll see a list of topics that match your criteria. In our case, we searched for the popular Astra theme.

When you see the theme you want to install, just hover over the image. You will then see the Install, Preview and Details button.

Click the Install button.

WordPress will now install your theme and show you a success message along with an “Activate” or “Live Preview” button.

Click the Activate button and you have successfully installed and activated your WordPress theme.

Depending on the theme, additional setting options may be added that you may need to configure.

Your theme may prompt you to install recommended plugins, download demo data, or verify settings.

You can follow the on-screen instructions or click the Customize button to start setting up your theme.

Install a theme using WordPress Admin’s upload method

The first method we covered only allows you to install free themes available in the WordPress.org theme directory.

What if you want to install a premium WordPress theme from companies like StudioPress, Elegant Themes, Themify or ThemeForest* (recommend) etc.?

Or what if you want to install a custom theme? In this case, you would need to install the theme using your WordPress admin’s upload method.

First, download the ZIP file of the theme you bought from a marketplace or commercial theme store.

Next, go to the Appearance » Themes page in the WordPress admin panel and click the Add New button at the top.

  1. This takes you to the Add New Themes page with free themes. Since you already have the theme you want to install, click the Upload Theme button above.
  2. You will be prompted to select the zip file you downloaded earlier. Select the file and click Install Now.
  3. Once your theme is installed, a success message will appear along with the link to activate and preview the theme. (ATTENTION: Activate child theme and NOT use the main theme -> see video!!!)
  4. Click the Activate link and you have successfully installed and activated your WordPress theme.

Additional settings options may be added depending on the theme, which you may need to configure either through the theme customizer or through a separate options panel.

a notice: Theme upload feature is only available for self-hosted WordPress.org users. If you’re using WordPress.com, you won’t see this option because it limits you.

Of the Upload via FTP in the /wp-content/themes/ folder is also possible, but more complex and less simple.

FAQs for installing WordPress themes / templates

Below are some of the most frequently asked questions about installing WordPress themes.

1. How many themes can I use in WordPress?
You can only use one theme at a time. However, you can install as many themes as you like. Not all themes installed on your WordPress website are active.

Once you activate a WordPress theme, your previous active theme will be automatically deactivated and the new theme will become your active theme.

2. What is a child theme in WordPress?
A child theme in WordPress is a sub-theme that inherits all of the functionality, features, and style of the parent theme. You need to install both parent and child themes on your site and activate the child theme.

For more information, see our guide on how to create a child theme in WordPress and how to install a child theme in WordPress.

3. What is a WordPress theme framework?
Theme frameworks are highly optimized WordPress themes designed to be used as the parent theme.

Intended for advanced users and developers, these theme frameworks come with various code and speed optimizations that allow other developers to quickly build on top of them.

StudioPress’ Genesis is the best example of a WordPress theme framework. Check out our article on WordPress theme frameworks for more information.

4. Premium vs Free Themes – Which Should I Use?
If you’re just starting out on a budget, we recommend starting with a flexible free theme. Check out our picks of the best free WordPress themes for blogs and the best free themes for business websites.

If you have a little more to spend, go for a premium theme. These themes are supported with priority, which is especially useful for beginners.

For more information on this topic, check out our guide to free and premium WordPress templates.

5. How do I choose the best theme for my website?
There are so many WordPress themes out there and most of them are designed by professionals to look really great.

This makes it a bit confusing for beginners to choose the perfect theme for their website.

We recommend keeping it simple. Choose a minimalist design that is close to what you have in mind. Make sure the theme looks good on mobile and run a website speed test on the demo website.

Check out our beginner’s guide on how to choose the perfect WordPress theme for your website.

6. Can I use the same theme I saw on another WordPress site?
If it’s not a custom WordPress theme, you can find and use the same theme on your own website.

We hope this step-by-step guide helped you install a WordPress theme on your website.

Do you still have questions about installing the theme on WordPress?

My team and I are happy to help you:

WordPress advice, support & telephone hotline (also WooCommerce)