Every year, WordPress releases a new default theme that ships with every WordPress installation. The WordPress default theme typically shows off new features that have been added to the platform.
However, the WordPress default theme is often lacking in features that are crucial for a small business website. That’s why it’s so common for WordPress users to change the default theme of their websites.
If you’re wondering what the default WordPress theme is and how to change it, you’re in the right place. In this post, we’ll explain everything you need to know about the WordPress default theme, how and why you should change it, and share how you can create a website without installing an advanced theme.
What is the WordPress default theme?
WordPress default theme is the theme that comes preinstalled when you first install WordPress on your site. As mentioned earlier, this theme is used to show off new WordPress features. It can be used to create a basic website.
The current version of WordPress comes with three themes: Twenty Nineteen, Twenty Twenty, and Twenty Twenty-One. The current WordPress default theme is Twenty Twenty-One. This will be the first theme you see after you login to your WordPress website. A few of its notable features include:
- Custom header logos and elements such as a header with title or with a title and button
- Two navigation menus, one in the header and one in the footer
- Gradient presets for styling your blocks
- Custom cover block which allows you to have text over image making it easy to visually separate different sections of your post
- Multiple custom post formats that include galleries, links, quotes, and even chats
- Built-in block patterns which are predefined block layouts that you can use to quickly build your page
In addition to that, the theme comes with its own set of block patterns which include links area, overlapping images, and contact information among others.
How can you optimize the default theme?
If you’re using the default WordPress theme and you’re noticing that your website is loading slowly, there are some things you can do to optimize your website:
- Optimize the images used on your website by using an image compression plugin like ShortPixel
- Install a caching plugin like WPRocket or WP Super Cache
- Use a Content Delivery Network (CDN) to serve images and static files like scripts and style sheets
- Use a fast hosting provider
How can you change your WordPress default theme?
If you want to change the default theme that comes with WordPress, it’s pretty easy to do. Go to Appearance > Themes > Add New. Then you can browse the official repository to find a different theme you like. Once you’ve found it, click Install and then Activate.
Alternatively, if you’ve downloaded a WordPress theme from a third-party website or marketplace, you can upload it by going to Appearance > Themes > Add New > Upload Theme.
Then locate the zip file of the theme, select it, and install it. After the theme has finished installing, click Activate.
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Why should you change the WordPress default theme?
So now you know what the default theme is and what its main features are. You also know how to change the default theme. But why should you change it if it has all the latest features that were introduced in WordPress?
The main reason for changing the default theme is that it’s not as feature-rich as some other WordPress themes.
What features (necessary for simple websites) are missing in the default theme?
Even though the theme relies on the block editor, the available block patterns and blocks do not give you complete freedom over the way your website looks.
There is no way to have full control over how and where you place the blocks, and the block patterns are limited in terms of available layouts.
Another limiting feature is the customization options. For example, you can change the background color but there are no settings for changing the color of the buttons, the fonts or the header layout. Similarly, there are no customization options for the header and footer of your website with the default theme.
In other words, if you decide to use the default theme building a decent website is pretty difficult unless you create a child theme.
An alternative would be to use a page builder plugin such as Elementor. It not only gives you more control over the layout of your pages but also offers more premium widgets. These include buttons, star ratings, dividers, icons, and more.
Why is a blank theme better than WP default theme for starting websites?
So you’ve decided that you don’t want to use the default theme on your WordPress website. But you can’t find a theme you like and advanced themes can be a little intimidating with the number of features they offer.
In that case, you can use a blank theme to start your website. A blank theme is a theme that has the most basic functionality included necessary to be recognized as a valid WordPress theme. A few examples include Hello Elementor, Astra, and GeneratePress.
A blank theme doesn’t include any fancy styling and the major benefit of using it is that you can create the website exactly the way you want it. It gives you complete freedom over your site’s design.
Another benefit of using a blank theme is that you can optimize your website to load fast and ensure it’s optimized for search engines without having to rely on installing third-party plugins in terms of loading times and semantically valid code. However, you’ll still need to install an SEO plugin to help you optimize the content of your blog posts, pages, and product descriptions.
Keep in mind that these blank themes have to be used with page builder plugins. This means that while you don’t need to learn code to create your website, you will need to build out entire pages and templates (including header and footer) with a page builder plugin.
How to create a simple website without installing advanced themes with 10Web AI Builder and a blank theme
If the above options are not your cup of tea, there is another way to create a simple website for your business.
You can use our AI Website Builder to create a website the way you want it with a little help from our AI assistant.
The AI Website Builder leverages the power of WordPress, Elementor, and AI builder. You can use the drag-and-drop interface to build your website and fully customize your site. You have full control over the layout of your pages as well as the visual styles such as colors, fonts, and more.
You’ll also need a blank theme such as those mentioned above because WordPress needs a theme to be installed and activated. As such, our builder needs a base upon which you can build the design and structure of your website. However, you don’t need to worry about downloading and installing a separate blank theme. The AI Website Builder comes with a 10Web Builder theme which has the basic functionality in place. And, since most of the page edits can be done with the AI Builder and Elementor, it’s not necessary for the theme to have complex features and customization options.
In other words, the resulting website built with AI Builder has a 10Web Builder theme (blank theme) + Elementor Free + 10Web Builder plugin installed. So we get the blank theme and pages and templates ready to customize.
To get started, all you have to do is enter your website address, and AI will generate a copy of your website on WordPress. You can then customize the sites and make any necessary edits using the web editor powered by Elementor.
Plus, you’ll also get our premium widgets for Elementor to add even more features to your website, as well as designer-made templates to use as a starting point.
It’s worth mentioning that the AI Website Builder is optimized for speed and comes with built-in backups, security service, and website management. Try it out for yourself for 14 days for free.
The WordPress default theme typically shows off all the cool new features available in WordPress. However, the default themes are not as flexible as some other WordPress themes on the market and don’t have a lot of customization options. As such, if you want complete control over your website’s look and style, consider switching to a different theme or take advantage of the AI Website Builder + blank theme + 10Web Page Builder combination to create the website of your dreams.
Can I delete WordPress default themes?
Yes, you can click on each of the theme’s thumbnails and then select the Delete option. However, it’s recommended to leave at least one of them installed. The reason behind this is simple: if an error occurs with your active theme (for example, an update goes wrong or a coding error occurs), WordPress will switch to another installed theme. If you don’t have a second theme, it will default to the WordPress white screen of death.
How do I change the default theme color in WordPress?
To change the default theme’s colors in WordPress, go to Appearance > Customize > Colors & Dark Mode. Then select your preferred background color.
Can I change the theme later after creating the website?
Yes, you can. However, keep in mind that while your content will remain intact, the way your website looks will change when you install and activate a new theme. This means you will have to go through the customization settings to set your preferred colors and fonts. You might also have to adjust the layout of your pages. As such, it’s better to find a theme you like first and then design your website.
Should I create a child theme of the WordPress default theme or choose another theme?
The choice is entirely yours. If you like the look of the WordPress default theme or don’t need a lot of features, the default theme should serve you fine. But if you want more customization options or if you want to use a specific page builder plugin instead of relying on Gutenberg, you should choose a different theme. Keep in mind that if you plan on customizing your new theme a lot, it’s a good idea to create a child theme to ensure your changes don’t get overwritten with the next theme update.
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