Top 10 Fastest WordPress Themes in 2022 (Based on Testing and Data)

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What are some of the important factors you should know before choosing one of the fastest WordPress themes for your website?

While there are lots of WordPress themes that are fast, many offer almost no customization. This can be overwhelming for beginners because users then have to rely on plugins or manually code the features they need.

As more features are added, the theme can get slower which defeats the purpose!

This can be a frustrating experience for anyone who wants to customize their site to match their specific needs.

Fortunately, there are some great fast WordPress themes that offer a ton of customization options.

This article will help you choose the fastest WordPress theme to launch a fast-loading, SEO-optimized and highly-customizable website.

The right WordPress theme will ensure your website is fast, secure and reliable at all times. And, at the same time provide an optimal user experience.

There are a few things every WordPress theme should have, including:

Let’s face it, nobody likes a slow loading website. It affects the user experience, increases bounce rates and reduces conversions.

As you can see, there are many reasons to ensure that your website loads fast.

Your requirements will change over time as you scale your business. Therefore, it’s important to ensure that the WordPress theme you use is feature-rich and you’re also easily able to add more content and updates over time.

The benefit of installing and using a child theme is that it retains all modifications even if you update the theme. It’s very useful if you are constantly updating your website and adding new features!

Not so long ago, website building was a laborious, time-consuming and expensive task that required tons of coding.

You had to be proficient in PHP, HTML and CSS to build a functional website, and perhaps even required the help of an experienced developer.

Web developers and designers can now create and launch websites incredibly quickly, and as a result are now creating more customers and generating more income.

There are many page builders on the market and we all have our favorite. It helps a lot if your WordPress theme is compatible with the page builders you’re most comfortable with as it will make the design process much easier.

Any WordPress theme you choose must be compatible with the WordPress plugin you will use.

Any WordPress theme you install should have the necessary information to help you install and use that software, including adequate documentation, install guides, tutorials, FAQs and support forums.

If you purchase a premium version of any WordPress plugin, you can expect personalized 1-1 on email support and in some cases live chat support as well.

To ensure the most accurate results, we’ve kept the test consistent. We installed each theme on individual fresh WordPress installations.

All the default plugins and themes were removed before we began the tests to ensure there was no plugin or theme slowing down page load speeds.

Here’s the speed test setup that you can replicate:

Your choice of hosting can make a significant difference in your website load speed. So along with a good theme, also choose the fastest hosting that you can go for.

If you’re looking for the fastest possible WordPress theme, here are some of the best options in 2022.

Additional WooCommerce customization options are included in Astra Pro — grid settings, off-canvas sidebar, gallery options, infinite scroll, a dropdown cart, sales bubble styles, distraction-free checkout, and so much more.

Astra is fully customizable and there are many options including color, layouts, typography, blogs, archives, headers, footers, widgets and menus.

The default Astra setup scores an A grade from GTmetrix with just 400ms of load time.

Astra provides a clean and performance-optimized code that ensures blazingly-fast loading times.

Weighing in at less than 50KB, compared to 300kb for most WordPress themes, means load times are as low as 0.5 seconds.

Here’s a Google Page Speed test with that scores 100%.

Your website needs to load as fast as it can, and we fully understand how even a few milliseconds matter to conversion rates.

Annual pricing:

Lifetime pricing:

Both annual and lifetime pricing customers will get access to one-on-one support, extensive training, and unlimited website usage. All purchases come with a risk-free 14-day money-back guarantee.

Created and maintained by aThemes — Sydney is now used on over 100,000 websites.

Sydney gives you the option to customize multiple elements of your website (colors, typography, blogs, background images, sliders, headers, footers). The theme comes pre-packaged with 600+ Google fonts and 12 custom widgets.

The premium version (Sydney Pro) includes additional header options. It also includes custom Elementor blocks (timeline, carousel, pricing tables,and others).

We installed Sydney bare bones on a shared server with a fresh WordPress install and here are the results.

It is a close competitor to Astra in terms of speed, however the total page size is about 40% larger than Astra at 72kb. This can add to the load time when you customize your theme further.

Our overall impression is that Sydney is fast and responsive, and it’s ideally suited for small businesses and freelancers for quickly creating a one-page professional website.

Created and maintained by the team at OceanWP LLC — the OceanWP theme is now used on over 700,000+ websites.

OceanWP is fully customizable and there are many options to personalize color, layouts, typography, blog, headers, footers, widgets and menus.

The premium version allows you to further customize and personalize your website using the Core Extension Bundles.

With just 518ms in the default setup, this theme offers a great foundation to start building your website.

Our overall impression is that OceanWP is a fast-loading theme that has great support for third-party plugins (Elementor, WooCommerce, WPML, WEGLOT, and others).

There is also an option to enable and disable dozens of JavaScript and CSS elements. Disabling the unwanted elements helps reduce the overall size of your webpage and helps to speed up your page load times.

OceanWP is a free theme with paid options (yearly and lifetime).

Annual pricing:

All yearly plans receive 12 months of updates and support.

Lifetime pricing:

All lifetime plans receive unlimited updates and support.

Created and maintained by David Vongries — Page Builder Framework is now used on over 20,000+ websites.

Page Builder Framework is fully customizable and there are many options for colors, layouts, typography, blogs, headers, footers, widgets, menus and custom sidebars.

The theme comes with its icon font. Shortcodes can be created and used for social media icons and YouTube videos.

Additional customization options are available in the premium version — custom font integration, Typekit integration and additional WooCommerce features.

Page Builder Framework has been built with no-bloat. The theme is one of the fastest themes for WordPress and has an incredibly small footprint of less than 100kb.

It doesn’t use Bootstrap and instead comes with a minimalistic CSS framework, and this helps reduce the page load time.

The page fully loaded in just 463ms with the default setup.

However, the additional time to load is likely due to the larger total page size and a lot of scripts that need to be loaded on page load.

Created and maintained by ThemeIsle — Neve is now used on over 300,000+ websites.

Neve is highly-customizable and there are many options for colors, backgrounds, typography, blog, fonts, sidebar, headers, footers and buttons.

Neve also comes with 50+ ready-to-import starter templates.

Additional customization options are available in the premium version — Custom layouts, Elementor add-ons, Typekit integration, LifterLMS integration, LearnDash integration, white-labeling feature.

After completing a fresh install of Neve, we tested the performance of the theme using GTMetrix. Again, no caching or minification plugin was installed.

Neve is a fast theme with the total WordPress install as less as 28kb. An added advantage of Neve is the fact that it uses vanilla JS instead of a framework like JQuery.

This adds to the performance boost and enables a much more snappy website.

Neve is a free theme with paid options (yearly and life-time).

Annual pricing:

All yearly plans receive 12 months of updates and support.

Created and maintained by the team at Tom Usborne — GeneratePress is now used on over 400,000+ websites.

GeneratePress is highly-customizable and there are many options for colors, typography, fonts, sidebar, headers, footers and featured images.

Additional customization options are available in the premium version — WooCommerce customization, advanced menu options, additional color options, additional blog options.

GeneratePress offers a barebones setup of the default page with minimal visuals. The fully loaded default page is just shy of 50kb in size.

But it is slower than other themes mentioned earlier even with similar page size due to the CSS that loads behind the scenes.

GeneratePress has clean code, and the default WordPress install is less than 50kb. It only loads the scripts that are required for displaying the page correctly.

When the Autoptimize plugin is installed, it reduces the amount of CSS and JS files being loaded on each page and that’ll also make a huge difference to your page speed.

Schema is sold and supported by the marketplace MyThemeShop.

The theme comes pre-packaged with 600+ Google fonts. It also includes multiple pagination options, a built-in AJAX search option.

Schema is a well optimized theme that is super fast. With the default setup, this theme ensures that the most important elements are loaded quickly so users can begin interacting with the website.

Schema includes lazy loading and is built using Async Javascript, both of which help page speed.

There’s also an option to enable or disable cache prefetching. On a fresh install, the page size is 201kb which is 4x larger than the average page size of the themes above. But due to added optimizations, the theme continues to load almost as fast as other themes.

Created and maintained by ThemeIsle — Hestia is used on over 100,000+ websites.

However, to enable the full functionality of the Hestia Pro theme (premium version), you need to install JetPack, WooCommerce, and WPForms Lite.

Hestia provides full control over the design and structure of menus. It comes with a responsive Mega Menu, making it easier to edit and customize your submenu content.

Additional customization options are available in the premium version — Video backgrounds, additional sections (pricing plans, portfolio, ribbons, testimonials), enhanced Elementor and Divi page builder compatibility, additional WooCommerce customizations, white-labeling feature.

Hestia is a well-designed theme for those who love the look of it. While it may not work for everyone, many people enjoy the default layouts.

With a fresh installation of this theme, you can see a fully loaded time of 413ms. However, the total page size here is 286kb with no additional customization.

This can add up quickly as you customize your theme further with plugins or widgets. So keep that in mind if you want to use Hestia.

Our overall impression is that Hestia is ideally suited to build simple websites for small businesses and freelancers with many customization options.

Hestia is a free theme with paid options (yearly and life-time).

Annual pricing:

All yearly plans receive 12 months of updates and support.

Created and maintained by aThemes — Airi is now used on over 20,000+ websites.

Airi is highly-customizable and there are many options. The theme provides multiple demo layouts that can be installed in a single click.

Additional customization options are available in the premium version (Aria Pro) — additional WooCommerce options, blog layouts, menu options, footer settings, extra blocks.

We cleaned up the WordPress installation and installed the Airi free theme on it.

The speed test has been great with just 600ms of fully loaded time. The increased load time is due to the size of the default page standing at 318kb.

Based on the speed tests we did, Airi is fast-loading (less than 2 seconds), and it offers the necessary customization options to set up a business or freelance website.

Created and maintained by the team at Elementor — Hello is used on over 900,000+ websites.

This theme does not offer any page customization by itself. You’ll need to install Elementor and create your pages and templates from scratch.

While this may be great in terms of the customization possibilities, page builders can add to the load time if the pages are not done well.

As such, if you go with Hello Elementor for its speed, you will end up with slower and slower performance as you add more features and pages to your website.

That’s not to say that Hello Elementor is something to be skipped.

Hello Elementor is a free theme.

If you’re looking for a WordPress theme that’s reliable, fast-loading, SEO-optimized, ranks well with customers (based on WordPress reviews and customer testimonials) and doesn’t cost you a fortune then consider the Astra theme.

Which theme did you go with? Do you have a favorite theme that’s super fast with high customizability that can be added to the list? Let us know in the comments below!

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