For a WordPress website development, theme selection for your WordPress website is the first step, than you have to move on to the next step to install selected WordPress theme on your website. WordPress theme installation is not simple, especially when you are going to install it for the first time.
Before getting to the heart of the matter, I will briefly review the importance of selecting the perfect WordPress theme. If your website is live, people visit your website (it can be readers, prospects, fans, etc.) whatever its purpose is. In any case, the design of your WordPress website should not have the opposite effect. If a visitor don’t like your website or if he did not find any interest in your website, he can leave your website in less than 3 seconds.
5 Things to Do BEFORE changing your WordPress theme
If you are installing WordPress theme for the first time, you can skip to the next point. This only applies to people who want to make some updates in current WordPress theme.
The consequences of a change of theme must be minimal for visitors.The impact is not the same when you install your first theme because there is little chance that your site collects significant traffic.
Here are 4 recommendations to implement when changing the theme:
Make a backup
We will never repeat it enough, having a backup system is IMPERATIVE for any website. A problem can be happens anytime and backing up your website will be worth gold. Whether you are able to change the theme or not or backup a system I use some software which backup my website on daily basis and send it to Dropbox (it is also possible to send them to Amazon S3, a remote FTP, etc.). If you don’t want to use this solution yourself, I can advise you to take a help with some WordPress development company (They can help you in particular sending your backups to Dropbox).
Creating a maintenance page
Even if the theme change procedure is not very long, you will need to set the new theme. If you have not tested the beast on another installation of WordPress (test server or local), it will take some time to take change of this new theme. And as good as one can be, no one is immune to complications.
Beware of features in the old theme
Some themes offer features that may be lost when the new WordPress theme is activated. For example, if the SEO aspect is handled in your old theme and the new one does not offer that, you will have a problem. In this case, I recommend you to install Yoast SEO WordPress plugin. You also have to think about short codes. If you use them to maintain the content of your site, they will have to be copied into the new theme so that they can continue to work. Continue to inspect your deceased theme so that the transition is as pleasant as possible for your visitors.
Copy all additions made to functions.php
If you are a little handyman, you have probably added a few lines of code in your file functions.php but remember to duplicate the additions you want to keep in the file functions.php of your new theme.
Do not forget the tracking code!
You have certainly inserted a tracking code to collect your site traffic statistics (Google Analytics, or other). Be careful that tracking is not interrupted by changing your theme. If you manage this with a plugin such as Google Analyticator, you will not face any problem. However, if you have integrated the tracking code via theme administration or a few lines of code directly into your theme, put a silly thought on your screen to restore it as soon as possible.
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