Easy WordPress Customization: 4 Ways to Tweak Your Theme

Easy WordPress Customization

WordPress is easy to operate for the majority of users because most of the back-end and coding needs have already been taken care of. WordPress themes are built to add more value to your website, with beautiful designs, layouts, and functionalities. WordPress customization for themes will make them unique, and it will also add the necessary functionalities that your website requires.

The right WordPress hosting packages are essential if you want to take your WordPress customization in terms of design and functionality to the next level. Also, choose a WordPress theme that supports the level of WordPress customization you hope to attain for your site. It should have the basic functionality and appearance of what you have in mind to make customizing it easier. If that’s done, here are 4 ways you can customize your WordPress theme:

  1. Using WordPress Inbuilt Customizer
  2. Editing Custom CSS
  3. Using Plugins
  4. Using Child Themes

1. Customize your theme with WordPress Inbuilt Customizer

This is the easiest and quickest way to make small design changes to your WordPress website or blog. It is a part of the WordPress CMS itself and can make changes to any WordPress theme available out there. However, the level of WordPress customization you can make with this tool depends on the theme you’ve chosen. 

It offers basic sections where you can change your website’s:

Identity

Here you can modify your website title and tagline. Most themes allow you to add a website logo as well.

Colors

This option allows you to modify your site color schemes to match your business or personal needs.

Header Image

With this option, you can add, remove, or change the header image or simply resize or reposition it.

Background Image

This allows you to change the background image to any image you’ve uploaded or to an image in the WordPress media library.

Menus

This helps you to quickly create and edit all the menus on your website and choose where each menu is shown.

Widgets

The inbuilt customizer helps you manage preset widgets, giving you some structural and aesthetic control over your website.

WordPress inbuilt customizer allows you to view your changes before applying them to your website. You can also preview your site on different screen sizes. To access the customizer, go to your admin dashboard. Click ‘Appearance’ on the left, choose ‘themes’ and then select ‘customize’ from the provided menus.

2. Customize WordPress Themes by Editing Custom CSS

add your css

You can make mid-level changes to the custom CSS of your website with this method. It involves editing the style sheets of your theme in order to modify design elements such as fonts, colors, margins, layout, etc. You can also use it to adapt your website to different screen sizes. 

This method requires a prior understanding of CSS. It is considerably easy to edit the style sheets of the theme but you should know exactly what you’re doing. The WordPress customizer has an inbuilt CSS editor that you can use. The Jetpack plugin also features a custom CSS editor for free. There are a lot of other easy-to-use plugins that allow you to do this efficiently, such as the Advanced CSS Editor and Modular Custom CSS.

3. Customize WordPress Themes with Plugins

It is common knowledge that plugins enable users to add functionality to WordPress websites, but it doesn’t end there. Plugins are another way to customize WordPress themes with little to no effort. This is a good option to consider if editing the custom CSS doesn’t get the job done. These plugins are a great way to add images, add custom blocks and more, even if you don’t have prior knowledge of HTML and CSS. 

Most of the plugins offer basic features for free, while advanced features and customizations are available for a fee. Here are a few useful plugins that you can use to customize WordPress themes:

Beaver Builder

A beginner-friendly drag and drop page builder that transforms your WordPress website’s front end.

Visual Composer

By using innovative drag and drop website building elements, you can create different layouts and make many more changes without editing a lot of code. 

Site Origin CSS

With simple visual controls you can make design decisions and see a preview of the changes in real time.

Customify

This is a versatile plugin that allows you to add advanced features to your themes without touching a line of code.

NextGEN Gallery

This trusted plugin allows you to add attractive galleries to your webpages.

4. Customize WordPress Themes Using Child Themes

A child theme can be used to make major changes to WordPress themes. A child theme is basically a copy of the main theme that you have made specific customizations to. It is a theme that inherits all its styles and functionality from the main theme but receives more priority over the main theme. This means that the edited style in the child theme is displayed regardless of what it is in the main (or parent) theme. 

The benefit of using this method is that your customizations are retained even after you update the parent theme. Also, you can quickly revert to the parent theme if something goes wrong. Follow these steps to create a child theme:

  1. Create a new folder in the /wp-content/themes/folder directory. 
  2. Assuming the parent theme name is ‘Theme UI’, change the folder name to ‘theme-ui-child’.
  3. Create a text file within the folder and save it as ‘style.css’.
  4. Copy and paste the following code into the ‘style.css’ file.

/*

Theme Name: Theme UI Child

Theme URL: https://thethemeurl.com

Description: The child theme, born from Theme UI.

Author: Your name.

Author URL: http://www.yourpersonalwebsite.com

Version: 1.0.0

Template: ThemeUI

*/

@import url(“../themeui/style.css”);

Replace ‘Theme UI’ with the appropriate theme name and add other relevant information. 

  1. Add the style rules to create the changes you need.
  2. Turn on the child theme in the theme selection page, in the appearance section of the WordPress dashboard.
  3. Check to see if your edits have been implemented.

Customize WordPress Themes to Improve Your Website

Customizing your WordPress website’s theme can be very easy, depending on the level of customization you need and your WordPress/CSS proficiency. Start with the inbuilt customizer if you’re new to it all. It is advisable to create a child theme so you don’t lose your changes when you upgrade the theme.

Author’s bio: Vivian Johnson is fond of writing and has been involved in the content marketing industry since 2011. She is specialized in web hosting & website builder niches.