Does Free WordPress Themes Affect SEO?

how wordpress theme affect seo

If you own a wordpress site, you may have many questions about it. Today you will get to know some vital info about whether free WordPress themes affect SEO or not.

I have also discussed whether you should use them for websites and blogs or not.

More than 400 million people use WordPress, and I am sure not all use paid themes.

But as I know, only a few million people purchase the theme for their website and blog, and the rest depend on free themes.

Talking about stats, the most sold WordPress theme is Avada, and till now, fewer than 1 million people have bought it. It’s pretty surprising that with more than 400 million users, only 0.25% have bought a paid theme.

On estimating the average, not more than 4%-5% of people would have bought the paid themes.

As I know, 10 out of 8 people use free themes on their website rather than spending money on paid themes.

So let’s move to the main question: do free WordPress themes affect SEO?

Free WordPress themes affect SEO because free themes come with limited features. In that case, most people use plugins to compensate for the required features, which slow down the website’s loading speed and results in low ranking, which is the primary factor for SEO.

Read 21+ SEO Facts That Every Content Writer Should Know In 2022!

How does the WordPress theme Affect SEO?

The major drawback of using free themes that affects SEO is they reduce the page speed as many users start using various plugins to get features that a pro theme has.

On the other hand, many paid themes come with multiple features, which you won’t get on a free theme.

For example, I am using a free version of Ocean WP, which is a great theme, but to show the post layout, I had to download a separate plugin. The post layout comes along with the paid or pro version.

As per Hubspot, there are over 31,000 WordPress themes.

And every theme is different. Some are useful for creating new websites, some for blogs, and some are best for creating an e-commerce site.

Most free WordPress themes come with limited features, and you can avail yourself of many features by buying a paid theme only.

If you are using the free theme on your website and have dynamic content, you may also have to use a lot of plugins on your site.

When you start a blog, you can invest your money in free themes if you are not on the budget. But it does not matter if you create a blogging site and use expensive themes.

Is it safe to use a free WordPress theme?

WordPress themes are safe to use only when downloaded from suitable sources such as the official website of the theme or software company.

You can directly download them from the WordPress dashboard using appearance options.

A few fools on the internet have created websites and social media pages claiming to provide premium WordPress themes at a 90% discounted price.

I humbly request that you should not buy any software from any third-party sources as they are cracked ones and lack in many things.

Let’s see why you should not use third-party, cracked WordPress themes.

  • Contain malicious codes.
  • Make your site slow.
  • You can lose access to your website.
  • Data loss.
  • Data theft.
  • No customer support.
  • No updates.

Should you use a free wordpress theme?

Using a free theme is the best option if you are an individual. But from a business perspective, you should not use a free theme to create an e-commerce store or content delivery site.

You can move to other platforms such as Shopify or hire a coder to design a custom site for those kinds of websites.

It does not mean you can not create a professional website using WordPress. Many sites like TechCrunch, BBC, PlayStation, Microsoft news, and ted blog use WordPress as their CMS.

Changing theme affects SEO?

Some of the themes are lightweight, and some have a lot of resources on them. As themes are nothing but scripts with HTML, CSS, and Javascript files.

Each line in these themes makes them slow, resulting in the sites’ slow loading.

You should not frequently change it if your website or blog is well established. According to SEJ, A theme or template on any website contains a lot of information, such as.

  • Structured data.
  • Metadata.
  • Alt text and all.

If you want to change the theme, choose a lightweight theme so that it can load fast when people search for any query.

FAQ about SEO Affects with free WordPress theme.

Can you change the website theme without affecting SEO?

If you choose a theme with a similar structure and if it is lightweight, it is possible that it may not affect your website’s SEO.

How to keep content and change the WordPress theme?

If you are changing the theme in wordpress, you won’t lose your content. But while changing your hosting, you can take a backup or down migration plugin. Download a new theme and upload your backup.

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Manish Pandey
Manish Pandey

Hi, I am Manish Pandey, this blog's author and content writer. I primarily focus on content related to Digital Marketing, Blogging, and SEO. I have been blogging since 2017 and have over 5+ years of experience. Hope I will try to put some helpful content for you.