How To Install A WordPress Theme


Next in the category of WordPress Tutorials I will take a look at how to install a WordPress Theme by uploading it from your desktop. This simple method is straightforward and can be used for any theme that you want to use, whether it is from the excellent free selection available at (which I will assume for the purpose of this tutorial), whether it is free from anywhere else, or indeed, it is a premium theme that you have purchased. As I mentioned when discussing WordPress Themes you should not automatically discount a theme because you have to pay for it even if there are a huge number of free options, you pay for a reason. Many premium themes offer a great look combined with outstanding flexibility and other options. If you missed my introduction to WordPress, then click the link as a starting point.

As I commented when talking about the uploading of WordPress Plugins the use of FTP is an option for uploading too but I will not be covering that for themes because there is simply no need to do it using the FTP method.


Step 1

Go to and click on ‘Themes’, or click on this link. This will present you with this page.

how to install wordpress theme

You now have a choice which I have highlighted with two arrows. The arrow on the left of the page points at a search box. Use this if you know the name of the theme that you want. The arrow on the right points at a link that you should click on if you do not know the name but do have an idea of the type of theme that you want. This link is important as it narrows down your search substantially. As you can see at the time of writing this article there are over 1600 different themes to choose from so I would strongly suggest narrowing down your search. Clicking this link takes you to the page you see below.

how to install wordpress themes

As you can see you now have different criteria by which you can select an appropriate theme.


Step 2

When you have identified a theme which you feel would be the best one for your needs then click on it and this will take you to a page which will allow you to preview a larger image of the theme. You can also see here the ratings given to it by other users.

how to upload wordpress theme

Note you will also have another opportunity to preview the theme later when you have uploaded it.

If you are happy with the theme then hit the ‘Download’ and save the file onto your computer. It doesn’t matter where you save it as long as you remember where it is. There is no need to unzip it.


Step 3

Next log in to your wordpress site and from the dashboard click on ‘Appearance’, then ‘Themes’, then ‘Install Themes’, then ‘Upload, then ‘Browse’. Now go to the folder or location where you saved the downloaded theme, open it, and click ‘Install now’.

installing wordpress themes


Step 4

Once uploaded you can now simply activate it or, you can click for a live preview to double check that it is the one you want.

install theme wordpress

You’re done.

Don’t forget many of these WordPress Tutorials are also covered in videos on my YouTube page, the link for which you’ll find on the upper right of this page.