I’ve installed and tested 100’s of WordPress themes in the last 12 years. Without a doubt, the lightest and best WordPress theme, that will perform the best in search engines, is combination of Astra’s WordPress theme, combined with a plugin called Elementor. These two components are essential for creating a WordPress that is super fast to build, and lightening fast to load for search engines like Google.
Astra Free WordPress Theme
Astra is a light WordPress theme that is extremely popular in the SEO community. It provides an insanely simple a clean framework upon installation. Astra has free and paid version; however, I honestly have not even used the paid version because I also use Elementor, which covers the paid options of Astra, which I will explain next. In fact, I’ve made it to the payment page, but haven’t needed to ever pull the trigger.
Keep in mind, I’ve been using WordPress for over 12 years, so I might be a little more advanced than you. That being said, you might find the paid version extremely helpful because it provides pretty cool addons like landing page and blog layouts, making life a little bit easier.
I’d like to also mention GeneratePress as a light weight theme. Fellow members of SEO Signal Lab, a closed group for SEO professionals picked GeneratePress over Astra; however, it’s very close in my opinion, and Elementor works extremely well with Astra.
Elementor Free WordPress Plugin
Elementor is a page designer that makes custom designing Astra (or any theme really) way easier. Like Astra, there’s a free and paid version but I have yet to purchase the paid version of Elementor because many of the paid options come with Astra.
Get it? Both free versions kind of fit together like a yang a yang.
That’s why they are the perfect marriage for a WordPress website, SaaS marketing site, or a simple blog.
Astra + Elementor Process
For what it’s worth I like to picture Astra as a blue print for a giant skyscraper in the city, and Elementor would be the enormous crane connected to the skyscraper that helps quickly put the pieces together.
Again, I only use the free version for both Astra and Elementor. That being said there’s a little process to set everything up so the WordPress theme options don’t bump heads with the Elementor plugin customizable options.
The Setup Process
- Install Astra’s Free WordPress Theme
- Install the Elementor Free WordPress Plugin
- Disable Elementor’s Default Colors (Under Elementor Settings)
- Diable Elementor’s Default Fonts (Under Elementor Settings)
- Control all of your default CSS like font’s and colors through Astra (WP Customize)
- Use Elementor only when building your page.
I’ve personally seen too many tiny WordPress site score D’s and F’s when ran through GT Metrix’s Speed Tester. As you can see below. that’s not what happens with Astra + Elementor. You should note that Google is continuously ranking faster websites higher in search results. In other words, the fast your site loads, the higher it will rank for your target keywords, and of course, that leads to much dinero.
I want to personally thank you for reading my blog post. You probably had a million articles to pick from and you’re reading this one, which means a lot to me. So, if you found it informative, leave me a comment or connect with me on Twitter.