Top fast WordPress themes you need to know about

We invited WordPress designers and developers on Themeforest to share their fastest performing themes. We ran each theme through Pingdom, recorded all the results, and in the article below we’ve shared some of the best performing themes we discovered.

Speed & Optimization

With over nine thousand WordPress themes on ThemeForest it can sometimes be daunting to find the perfect theme. Sure, customers can look at the number of sales and ratings of each item, or the reputation of each author, but other than looking purely at the aesthetics of each design, are there any other ways to determine which is the best theme to invest in? The answer is yes – how fast a theme performs.

An effectively optimized WordPress site can significantly help your website load faster.

Theme speed can be optimized in numerous ways such as selecting a solid hosting platform, the use of a good framework, optimizing images effectively and so forth. We may deep dive into these areas in a future blog post, but for the purposes of this article all we need to embrace is the fact that an effectively optimized WordPress site can significantly improve how fast your website loads, improve SEO ranking, and thus help retain users and customers on your site.


Although WordPress performance can be subjective and therefore complex to make comparisons between themes with many variables at play, we wanted to help expose some of the better, well-configured WordPress themes that load quickly and perform well.

Our overall intention is to give some exposure to themes that have been built and optimized with speed in mind for the end user.

It’s important to note that our tests are not trying to be scientific in any way. We only recorded scores for themes voluntarily submitted by authors, for example, and have not included every theme on ThemeForest. Even within the sample of themes we ran tests on, there are still many variables out of our control that should be taken into consideration such as hosting, location, and time of day reports were run; that can all affect results. One of the biggest challenges in making comparisons is obviously the wide difference in page size and number of requests between themes, so it’s important to keep these issues and variances in mind.

For the purpose of this article, however, we’ve given precedence to themes with an ‘A’-rated performance grade where 100 is the highest attainable score. The ranking also takes into consideration load time (where lower values are best) and the “faster than” metric (where higher values are best).

Our overall intention is to give some exposure to themes that have been built, and optimized with speed in mind for the end user, and if in doubt, users can always run their own tests/reports for themes they are interested in purchasing.

So, formalities over and done with, let’s jump in and take a look at all those juicy, optimized WordPress themes!


Foto – Photography WordPress Themes for Photographers by themesawesome

Foto has a simplistic, and clean design to allow images to take centre stage. This template is incredibly easy to implement, and equally as simple for the audience to navigate. The sleek design has been crafted specifically for the optimum display for photography, and includes fifteen different album options.

The Foto WordPress template for photographers is easy to use, and allows you to customize the look and feel of your photography website. It also uses up to date, and best practice SEO techniques, and has been designed to be responsive across all devices.

Sport Center – Multipurpose Events & Education WordPress Theme by leafcolor

The Sport Center WordPress theme is perfect for fitness and sport services including gyms, cycling, and yoga classes. This ‘A’-rated theme handles everything from events, courses, training centers, education, business and shopping. The theme may be feature-rich but it is very easy to use.

→ Check out the full demo


TopSEO – SEO, Digital Marketing WordPress Theme by haintheme

TopSEO is a flexible WordPress theme that is well designed, and contains clean code under the hood. Very well suited to digital agencies, SEO agencies, social media, and any marketing business. All your favorite features are bundled in this theme including retina-ready visuals, a fully responsive layout, cross-browser compatibility, and a one-click demo install.

Aerious – Super Light Multipurpose WordPress Theme by TBS-CODERS

Aerious is a one-stop multipurpose theme that possesses the essential, and additional elements that a classic multipurpose theme normally has. What makes Aerious different to other themes, however, is its limitless options, speed, and easy-to-use user interface. The theme also comes bundled with 40+ readymade Sliders, coming soon pages, maintenance mode pages, multiple post formats, built-in SEO options, readymade portfolio templates, testimonials templates, client templates, and much, much more! The super light construction of the theme contributes to its high-scoring performance grade.

CorpusChristi – Modern Blog WordPress Theme by FastWP

This blog/magazine template is a responsive, and retina-ready HTML5 website with a tiled grid system layout. Fully optimized for mobile touch, and swipe, the combination of masonry images, and typography creates a delightful design that pulls the reader in.

Coolist | Infinite Scroll Magazine WordPress Theme by Themewaves

The main features of this highly customizable magazine theme are an easy-to-use post row builder, infinite scroll pagination, and horizontal AJAX category navigation similar to what is employed on the USA Today website. The demo below showcases how the theme can be completely customized for a specific niche (e.g. gaming) giving you the flexibility to control the look and feel at all times.

Hedmark | Clean & Minimal Responsive WordPress Blog Theme by khalilthemes

This fashionable theme employs great use of white space in a minimal offering with golden accents. Users will get a sense of style, class, luxury, and professionalism from the design, and layout. The personal blog and magazine theme is suited for many types of categories such as online marketing, blogging, publishing, traveling, lifestyle, and consultancy. Built on the Bootstrap, and Underscores frameworks, it’s guaranteed to perform extremely quickly as the performance results indicate.

Alpha-blog – Clean WordPress Blog Theme by Real-themes

Alpha-Blog is beautifully crafted, with great attention to detail. Timeless design, and an intuitive layout makes it a great theme for personal, or corporate use. The theme is a bloat-free, yet easy to customize WordPress GPL theme. It is coded with great attention paid to WordPress standards, and the code is easy to understand, and modify. If you’re a developer, the theme will make a clean starter for your creation. If you’re a blogger, you’ll get a fast, responsive and SEO ready theme out of the box.

Read full list on Envato Blog

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