WordPress theme vs template

WordPress Theme Vs Template: What Are The Differences?

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Are you getting confused between the terminology of the WordPress themes and templates? Most WordPress users become confused about these terms.

To break down the WordPress theme vs. template confusion, we will discuss everything about these terms.

At first, we will share a clear overview of WordPress themes and templates, how they work, key differences, and how they will benefit you.

Let’s look at the details.

WordPress theme vs template

WordPress Theme Vs Template: Detailed Overview

 What is WordPress Theme?

A theme is the basement of a website, and it determines the functionality and looks. WordPress theme comes with all design components.

A theme allows configuring – site identity, header and footer, background, typography, positioning, sizing, and other settings.

Moreover, a WordPress theme has been designed using a CSS Stylesheet. So you will be able to apply any design in the whole site or any specific aspects using a stylesheet.

If you don’t know HTML and CSS, that’s no cause of worry. You can configure your theme, but you cannot add a custom design to your theme without coding knowledge. W3 School is the best place to learn HTML, CSS, and other programming languages.

WordPress themes are available to the official WordPress website and different themes: marketplaces like Envato Elements, Themeforest, Template Monster, Mythemeshop, etc.

The theme file remains in zip format. When you extract the file, you will see additional files and folders, including various extensions.

After downloading a WordPress theme, install the theme from the dashboard, and the theme will be added to the webserver.

Now you can browse the theme from your WordPress dashboard. To enhance the functionality of a theme, you can further add plugins.

Some themes specifically recommend plugins to work correctly. Some of these types of themes are Astra, GeneratePress, and StudioPress themes.

Benefits of WordPress Themes

  • WordPress Theme’s customization feature allows you to add custom colors that match your brands.
  • Installing a theme with demo content saves your time. To complete setting up a site, you will need only a couple of hours.
  • There are lots of free themes available. If you want premium features, buying a theme is an excellent solution.
  • You can arrange functionality and widgets according to your choice.

WordPress Themes Drawback

  • WordPress themes use fancy animations more often, which requires a lot of JS code. It slows down the site.
  • Some developers add very complex code to their themes. You will remain stuck with a specific design unless they allow you to configure the settings. Moreover, it may affect the content management part and mobile responsiveness if you work on the code. 
  • WordPress publishes a new version continuously, so it is necessary for a theme to update its version to cope with the updated version. If the theme fails to update, it may lead the website to malfunction. 
  • Some themes come with bugs.
WordPress theme

What Is WordPress Template?

A Template is a part of a theme and a single page layout. A theme can contain several templates, and it doesn’t have any boundaries. Templates work great if you want to design any specific page on your own.

Different extensions of files define different templates. Suppose archieve.php defines a list of all posts (includes tags, date range, category). Single.php is for showing single blog posts.

Along with standard templates to deliver specific features, some themes provide unique templates. There are separate templates for header, blog post design, footer, blog list design, and many more. 

Template monster and Themeforest are the biggest marketplaces for WordPress themes, plugins, and templates.

By the WordPress page editor, you can apply a template to each page. Some WordPress themes may not provide such features. If your theme does, that’s great for you.

Note that templates are part of a theme.

As we have already mentioned, all themes don’t have the option to choose a template. If you want to choose any specific template, you can use a WordPress page builder.

But by default of any theme, go to the right panel of WordPress Gutenberg editor, click on the page attribute then the template option will be shown.

You can choose any template other than default according to your requirement. But the default theme’s template options are limited, even not good for creating professional templates.

default theme template

To configure a template on your own, you will need to know CSS. WordPress allows you to start a design from scratch, or you can even modify any existing template. 

WordPress Theme Vs. Template: One Word Differentiate

WordPress themes and templates have the most significant difference. WordPress theme defines your website’s outlook. Whereas, a template is the page layout of your WordPress theme.

For Example, index.php is the default WordPress template, category.php is for post categories, single.php for posts.

WordPress Theme Vs Template: Final Verdict

We hope you got a logical concept of WordPress theme vs template. You can do a lot on your WordPress site and can enhance its maximize features, functionality, and outlook. WordPress themes and templates allow you to have better results and look than ever.

But remember, templates come with a theme. You can’t install a single template without installing a theme. Even though you will require CSS knowledge to modify any template’s design, it’s easy to create any template using tools like Elementor, Div, Thrive Architect, or any other Page builders.

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  • Palash Talukder

    Palash Talukdar is a digital marketer & the founder of WP Basic Pro. He has been building and managing WordPress websites for 5+ years. He loves to write about WordPress, SEO, marketing, productivity, and web performance.

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