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How to Install a WordPress Theme (FTP and WP)

3 Different Methods for Installing a WordPress Theme

If you’re a complete novice to WordPress and have just gotten your pretty new WordPress theme, you’re probably wondering what on Earth you should to do next. Logically, your next step is to install the theme.

You’ll be happy to learn that installing a WordPress theme is actually easier than it seems. Still, we thought it would be a good idea to show you exactly how to do it, using three different methods.

You can also read about how to install WordPress theme in Spanish.

There are three ways you can install a WordPress theme:

Installing a WordPress Theme Through the Theme Directory

In case you want to use a theme from the wordpress.org the most straightforward way to go about it is to add the selected theme through the theme directory on your website. The other, not as simple way to do it, is to download the theme and then upload it to your website. We will explain this method too later, but for now let’s stick to the first, and the easiest one.

Log in to your WordPress account. Navigate to Appearance > Themes.

Appearance Theme settings

When you get here, you will find two options for adding WordPress themes – on the upper left side and the big blank field below the already uploaded themes. Of course, it is possible to have more than one installed WP theme, but only one of them can be active. It is highly recommendable to uninstall all the themes apart from the one you’re using as unused themes have no purpose and only make your website hevier.

Add new theme from directory

In case you haven’t already tested the theme, this is where you can check it out and test it against different parameters. You can see a preview of the theme here, and make sure you are making the best choice.

Search for WordPress theme in directory

If you already made the decision, simply find it using the search functionality.

Search for your theme

When you find the theme, you will get a hover over button to install it. Click on it.

Install theme from directory

And the final step is to activate it. Just click on the Activate button.

Activate theme from directory

Install a Theme by using the Upload Method from WordPress Admin

If you cannot add it from the directory, you will most often use this method. It implies that you have already downloaded the theme from another trusted source and that the zip file is on your computer.

Go to your WordPress Dashboard. Navigate to Appearance > Themes > Add New.

Add new theme from directory

Then locate your theme’s ZIP file and select to upload.

Upload zip theme

Once the upload is complete, you’ll be able to activate your theme.

Activate theme zip

Installing a WordPress Theme With FTP (File-Transfer Protocol)

The third method is via FTP account, which is basically your installation directory.

FTP is short for File transfer protocol. It allows you to transfer files from your computer to your website hosting account.

Now, you may be thinking – there is already a media uploader inside the WordPress admin area for uploading files like images, video, audio, PDF and more.

Why do you need FTP?

You need FTP to be able to manually upload the files in WordPress that do not work properly, usually due to an error on your site.

Normally, you don’t need FTP to upload files at all. You can easily upload images from WordPress admin area. You can even upload plugins and themes from WordPress itself.

FTP client is an app that helps you connect to your website and transfer files using the FTP protocol. The most famous app of this type is je FileZilla (used on Windows, Mac, Linux | Free).

This method is most commonly used for themes that are too large to be uploaded in the ways shown above.

Open your FTP account and navigate to ../wp-content/themes. Inside, you’ll see folders for all themes currently installed on your website. Now paste the unzipped theme’s folder there.

Install theme

After you’ve uploaded the theme folder using the FTP Client, navigate back to your WordPress dashboard and navigate to Appearance > Themes. You should see your new theme as an option under your downloaded themes. Select the new theme and click Activate to make the theme live on your website.

How to Install a WordPress Theme FTP

In Conclusion

As you can see, installing a WordPress theme is a very simple procedure whichever method you go for. Once you install the desired WordPress theme, you can continue customizing it and add more functionality to it as per your needs. A wide variety of addons and plugins, both free and premium, are at your disposal whenever you notice you miss a certain feature and installing a WordPress plugin is surely not more complicated than installing a WP theme. In case you need more clarification, or simply want to share your experience with us, feel free to write to us in the comments section!

We hope that you found this article to be helpful. If you liked it, please feel free to check out some of these articles as well!


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