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Elementor is a popular choice among WordPress users that want to take advantage of the convenience that page builders offer when it comes to designing a website. With 5+ million installs it’s one of the most popular WordPress plugins of all time, and so it didn’t come as much of a surprise when it came out on top in a survey we ran on the “Best Page Builders for WordPress” earlier this year.
But anyway, we’re not here to sing Elementor’s praises some more. If you’ve found this post, you’re likely already aware of how good it is and may have already decided to use it for your next project. But the theme you’re going to use with it…that you’re not quite so sure about. Just which are the best Elementor themes?
There are literally TONS of themes out there that claim to “play well” with Elementor. But which really do? And which give you everything you need to create the perfect website? To find out, we put this very question to 60 Elementor experts who have lots of experience with using Elementor and have tried and tested different options. “In your opinion, what are the best themes for Elementor?” we asked, allowing each expert to name up to 3 themes.
We’ve published the results below and hope that at the very least this will give you a solid starting point in your search for the perfect theme to use with Elementor!
Best Themes to Use with Elementor? How the Experts Voted
|Theme||# of Votes|
|#1. Hello||41 Votes|
|#2. Astra||29 Votes|
|#=3. GeneratePress||12 Votes|
|#=3. OceanWP||12 Votes|
|#=4. Phlox||2 Votes|
|#=4. Neve||2 Votes|
|#=5. Genesis Framework||1 Vote|
|#=5. Kava||1 Vote|
|#=5. Kadence||1 Vote|
|#=5. MaxCoach||1 Vote|
|#=5. Twenty Twenty||1 Vote|
|#=5. Woostify||1 Vote|
|#=5. Rey||1 Vote|
|#=5. Essentials||1 Vote|
|#=5. Ohio||1 Vote|
|#=5. Jupiter X||1 Vote|
|#=5. Consulting WP||1 Vote|
|#=5. Architecturer||1 Vote|
|#=5. Monument Valley||1 Vote|
|#=5. Sydney||1 Vote|
|#=5. Page Builder Framework||1 Vote|
|#=5. _s (Underscores)||1 Vote|
There were 21 themes that work with Elementor that were mentioned in total by the 60 experts that we surveyed, but if you’ve looked at the table above, you’ll no doubt have noticed that there were four clear standout performers. These were Hello, Astra, GeneratePress and OceanWP, all receiving plenty of praise from our pros. We’re going to take a closer look at each of these options in the section below to find out why they’re considered the best themes for Elementor by our panel.
A Closer Look at the 4 Top-Voted Elementor Themes (Including Both Paid + Free Elementor Themes)
1. Hello Theme
Hello is made by Elementor themselves, so you should never, ever have to worry about compatibility issues (phew!). It’s what you’d call a barebones theme – essentially a blank canvas – that allows you to create WHATEVER you want (if you have Elementor Pro), without having to operate under constraints built into your theme or waste time stripping out features you don’t need. Instead, you build from the ground up, customizing absolutely every aspect of your website.
Lots of creative freedom but starting completely from scratch does mean that building out a site on the Hello theme will typically take longer, and it probably isn’t a good option if you don’t know your way around Elementor fairly well. The fact that it’s such a basic theme makes it lightweight and fast to load. It’s also responsive, accessibility ready and is absolutely free! Although to get the most out of it you should pair it with Elementor Pro.
Astra is very beginner-friendly and comes with a vast library of starter templates that can be installed in just a single click. Using these templates as a starting point and then customizing them to fit your requirements can help to greatly speed up your project, and is super useful if you have minimal web design experience or need to put together a professional-looking site in a hurry.
It also plays well with WooCommerce for online shops, and both LearnDash and Lifter LMS for course/education websites. Astra is well-optimized (no JQuery to avoid render-blocking issues) for speed and is developed by a very reputable company in Brainstorm Force, who are very highly regarded in the Elementor space and provide exceptional support. What’s not to like?!
GeneratePress is another really well optimized theme both in terms of speed (the whole theme is less than 30kb!) and for SEO with a very highly respected development team behind it that is constantly trying to make it better. They’re also very easy to get in touch with and really know their stuff – exactly what you want!
It’s also extremely popular for the amount of flexibility it provides, with tons of customization options even just with the free version, and then even more that are unlocked if you buy the premium version. There are also lots of hooks and filters that make it possible to create just about anything with GeneratePress, and it’s all laid out very intuitively and so is easy to work with.
OceanWP is all about providing design and content flexibility, and equips you with more customization options than either Astra or GeneratePress, but is not quite so optimized in terms of speed (but is still pretty good!). It comes with huge number of controls on a per-page basis that can be enabled or disabled and is particularly popular with folks that don’t have access to Elementor Pro, but need a lot of design flexibility.
It also integrates very well with WooCommerce and is a very popular choice for ecommerce websites. Like Astra it comes with lots of starter templates (they call them “Demos”) that can be imported in one click to speed things up.
Read What The Experts Said
We survey industry pros that are deeply knowledgeable about the subject being discussed and base our recommendations on the opinions they provide. But you don’t have to just take our word for it. Below you can read what each and every expert had to say when asked about the best theme for Elementor.
If you’re interested in reading what was said about a particular theme, you can make use of the filters below to quickly bring up all of the comments that were made about it.
“Elementor is a great page builder if you want to build something quickly. My team and I have used it on many occasions. Depending on what we have to do we use different themes.”
Hello – “This theme is built specifically for Elementor. It’s a fast and lightweight theme and as you can do practically anything with Elementor pro it is a good choice of theme to start with.”
Astra – “If you need to do a lot of customization to your site, then I recommend you use the Astra theme. It’s a lightweight theme optimised with speed in mind. However, it has a much larger range of options available compared to Hello theme. We have been using this theme for years and it has been very reliable.”
Neve – “Similar to Astra, we have the Neve theme which also gives you granular control over the different elements your site might require. It also has many starter sites that you can import to get things started quickly. This option is also available in Astra.”
“So which one would I choose? Well, it depends on what type of site you need to create. I have placed the themes in order with my favourite theme coming first for ease of use. So that would be the Hello theme.”
Hello – “When it comes to Elementor + Elementor Pro page builder I always go for the Hello theme because of its tight integration with the builder, a load time of approximately 500ms and the page size of around 25KB makes it the perfect candidate :)”
GeneratePress – “This is my second choice, as a developer. The theme has fast speeds & small file sizes + it provides many hooks and filters in order to extend the functionality of the theme.”
Astra – “I would recommend this one to non-devs. It integrates very well with Elementor and it also provides lots of templates and layouts, and it can be used without purchasing Elementor Pro.”
Hello – “Made by the Elementor team to perfectly fit with Elementor. This is a completely blank theme and gives you the freedom to develop all by yourself (headers, footers, pages, posts … etc.) It requires a decent knowledge of designing and developing with Elementor, so it is not recommended for beginners. It’s all about the speed and doesn’t have unnecessary scripts and files to slow down your site.”
Astra – “Astra is an awesome WP theme with lots of useful perks for beginners to start developing. It has a lot of starter templates with a one-click option to import them into your work as well as few out-of-the-box headers, footers, posts. It seamlessly integrates with Elementor and a few other page builders and works very well with Woocommerce to build an online shop. If you want to build some kind of learning or course site you are covered too, as Astra works perfectly with LearnDash and LifterLMS. If you want you can integrate many payment processors too and start to take payments for your courses. Last but not least, Astra is blazingly fast, with no JQuery and unnecessary code taking only 50Kb of bandwidth to load. In the Pro version of Astra, your possibilities are endless. Recommended for all sorts of users, from beginners to advanced.”
OceanWP – “OceanWP is another WP theme worth a mention. Very good integration with Woocommerce, which gives you the ability to easily make an online shop. With its segmented parts, you can enable/disable the parts (code) you want to use. Unnecessary code can be disabled and you achieve great page speed. Works well with Elementor and other Elementor addons.”
MaxCoach – “We have a lot of coaching clients coming to us right now and I have to say this is my favorite by far to build those on because it comes bundled and ready to go for online coaching. I love that I don’t have to install all of the plugins for the theme to work properly so when we have clients that aren’t in need of LearnPress or other features, we can just leave them uninstalled, keeping the theme free from bloat. Plus they’ve built some super awesome CSS widgets I love that I don’t have to come up with myself!”
Hello – “I am starting to fall in love with this simple theme. It’s lightweight and when I’m working with my designs, it is super easy to build out the layout. With Elementor Pro, I love how I can import some of my favorite theme kits/ widgets.”
“Let’s start by looking at the currently most successful themes on wordpress.org. Leaving aside the WordPress Standard Themes, Astra, Hello Elementor, OceanWP, and Neve are the four most popular themes with the highest number of active installations. It’s no coincidence that these themes are also the best match for the Elementor Page Builder. Let’s have a deeper look at each of these themes.”
Astra – “In my opinion, the Astra theme is not only the best WordPress theme but also the best choice when it comes to the most popular page builder. Being the second most installed theme, it’s not only my personal opinion, but a considerable part of the WordPress community also shares this point of view.
It’s a perfect match for you as an Elementor user independently of whether you use the free or the PRO version of the page builder. One of my primary goals when building a website is fast loading times. Therefore Astra is my favorite theme because it’s one of the fastest themes on the market.
Use it if you want a high-quality, extremely fast, accessible, schema markup optimized theme with extraordinary support.”
Neve – “Neve is the only theme that beats even Astra in terms of speed and therefore, this is my no. 2 go-to theme when creating Elementor sites. What I also really like about Neve is the great header builder. It’s already available in the free version, and it’s an intuitive way of building your header element without any additional plugins.
Use it if website performance is essential to you, and you are looking for a great alternative to Astra.”
OceanWP – “I would say OceanWP is the WordPress theme with the highest amount of available settings included in the free version. It’s a good fit for you if you don’t have Elementor Pro, but you still want to have high design flexibility.
Unfortunately, the theme’s performance is not that good as the other themes mentioned due to the many available options.
Use it if you need a lot of customization options and don’t have the Elementor Pro version.”
“By the way, in case you are wondering why the Hello Elementor theme is not one of my favorites, although I am all about performance, there is a reason.
I tested the performance of the best Elementor themes, and Hello is not the fastest WordPress theme on the planet, as stated by the creators. Supposing you include a simple header and footer, which you should do to draw a meaningful comparison. In that case, the theme’s performance will be worse than the fastest Elementor themes like Astra, Neve, or GeneratePress. Additionally, you would have to create all parts of your website from scratch. You have to invest more time in your website setup, and it requires the Elementor Pro version. Remember that you will have to extend your Pro license as long as your website is live.
You might ask yourself why I only consider the themes of wordpress.org. From my point of view, the mentioned themes are not only the best choices within the WordPress repository but also in the whole WordPress environment. I have also tested themes like Jupiter X or Kava Pro, which also work great with Elementor. But on the one hand, I’m a big fan of trying out free products first and only extending them if necessary. On the other hand, I think that the premium themes outside of wordpress.org are not competitive compared to the previously presented themes, including their pro versions.”
Hello – “After the new release of Elementor 3, which allows for global styling, I have started moving most of my sites from Phlox, Astra, Ocean WP over to Hello. The only reason to be paying for a pro theme or utilizing a different theme after the last major release of Elementor (3.0) is if you have added a ridiculous amount of features to the theme code.
As a developer, this has greatly enhanced my workflow. Hello Theme is lightweight and essentially blank, so it is perfect for designers and developers looking to create a custom look in WordPress. For those that want the ability to access the theme files, there is a child theme available on GitHub that the Elementor team does plan on putting in the theme repository on WP soon.
While it’s not built-in accessible, one is able to add Aria-labels in Elementor Pro’s “Custom Attributes.” By default the form in Elementor Pro is accessible. The theme is easy to make accessible utilizing Elementor Pro.
In switching themes, if you were using a previous theme to create the header and footer you will need to recreate them in the theme builder for Elementor, but of the 25 sites I’ve moved, it has taken very little time (less than 5-10 minutes per page) to make sure all the functionality has remained the same as when using other themes. Granted, I haven’t been asked to update any deprecated themes to Hello theme, yet.
If you are utilizing Elementor it only makes sense to be using a theme that is 100% compatible with it. The speed alone is worth the switch.”
Juan Eloy Hernández
Hello – “This is my first recommendation if you want (and need) a lightweight theme that works perfectly with Elementor. It’s almost empty, but if you like doing things from zero, this is your best choice. Also, this theme is completely free with no pro version, and its code is really minimalistic.”
OceanWP – “This is also a great theme to work with Elementor, especially if you are working on a more complex site or for ecommerce. It comes with many features and options for headers, sidebars, and many extra extensions that make this theme powerful, but also fast.”
Astra – “As a web designer, I’ve always recommended Astra Theme to all of my clients for these 4 main reasons:
- Design Templates
Astra is great for its lightweight capabilities. Sitting under 50KB, it means your website will load much quicker than other WordPress themes on the market. Also, another noteworthy feature for Astra is how easy it is to adjust your overall design in real-time with its built-in “Customizer” feature. From the header to footer, your theme is totally customizable, and requires no coding knowledge. Another fantastic feature of Astra is the ability to integrate with drag-and-drop page builders like Beaver Builder and Elementor, making it easier to build an end-to-end website on WordPress. If you’re looking for plenty of pre-built website designs to start out with, then Astra is a must-have. With 100+ designs to choose from, you can get a website up-and-running for your niche business in days, not weeks.”
Jupiter X – “Jupiter X is hard to beat. Every bit of functionality you can possibly imagine has been built in, there are hundreds of demo sites to use as a starting point and the Elementor integration is seamless. Custom post types? Jupiter makes them super easy, with no hard code required. Our latest Jupiter build was for a global B2B corporation and it blew them away – you’d never guess that a WordPress theme was behind such a top-quality, enterprise-level website.”
Consulting WP – “Consulting is next on our list of incredible Elementor integrated WordPress themes. Straight out of the box, this theme is full of all the features any modern business could need. Case studies? Done. Portfolio? Yep. Want to automate appointment scheduling and Zoom calls? Guess what… it does that too. Even if you just want a super light site, they’ve built in the ability to turn off features not required. It looks great, everything is editable and it’s pretty speedy too.”
Architecturer – “Last, but not least, is the beautiful Architecturer – yes, Google will try and correct you when you try to locate this hidden gem, but it’s well worth seeking out. Perfect for furniture brands, arty businesses, trendy consultants and – as the name might suggest – architects, of course! Complete with creative portfolio layouts, we keep coming back to this theme and it’s made even better by integrating nicely with Elementor.”
Astra – “So just like everyone out there, we did a lot of head-scratching asking ourselves “which theme is best”. We found Astra to be a solid bet. What works for us…We use the Pro version which you can easily edit the styling across the theme if you wish. Also for e-commerce it has additional functionality, you can white label the Theme, stick header options and various CSS styling options that give you quick and easy editing capability.
An example of a site that we built with Astra was https://www.socialcateringco.com.au. We wanted something that was fun, energetic, bold and showed off Jade’s personality. Astra was a good start for us on this project.”
OceanWP – “Another of our go-to themes. It’s very much on par with Astra. Loads fast and has some great extensions that you can add easily. We used the sticky nav for https://www.persuit.com/. Again editing controls are very good and it works seamlessly with Elementor. It does a great job with e-commerce websites (on the sales funnel side).”
Phlox – “A great case study style theme. It has some additional modules that are specific to Phlox that provide a differnt feel for the user. We have only used this Theme once, but is a good go to if you’re looking to showcase work.”
Hello – “This is the most stripped down theme from Elementor theme. It’s a blank canvas, the user should design every aspect of a website.
If you’re a more experienced designer, you don’t really need anything else.”
Astra – “It’s the most popular theme for Elementor, and is a good fit for webshops, providing a bunch of starter templates.
Good for beginners looking for a starting point. I have several webshops based on this theme. It also has styling options for LearnDash.”
GeneratePress – “My favourite combination for most custom projects is GeneratePress and Elementor. GeneratePress is easy to work with, handles pretty much everything through the WordPress Theme Customizer, has a great development team behind it and is really lightweight in terms of code. The theme has lots of hooks so you can easily customize it using a child theme. I don’t generally run Elementor on all pages, usually only on pages where I really need it, so I need a theme that can handle the rest of the site without designing two different types of systems.”
Astra – “I like Astra for the same reasons as GeneratePress. It’s lightweight and easy to work with. If I didn’t have GeneratePress, Astra would be my number 1 pick to use with Elementor because of its deep integration. However, on the theme side, GeneratePress is just a little bit easier to use, just a little bit more intuitive and just a little bit more customizable. The difference is really marginal, but that’s why I prefer GeneratePress.”
Hello – “It’s by Elementor and works best and is the most light-weighted with the Page Builder in my opinion. Also, with its simple “nude” quality and flexibility, it is perfect for Designers like me, who love to layout and design templates, components and sections from scratch, all new and individually.”
“My recommendation on the best themes for Elementor will probably mimic any of the thousands of other reviews you could find online.”
Astra – “My favourite one is Astra. It’s lightweight and it has great defaults to start any kind of site. It also has a companion plugin that gives you a good amount of predefined templates in case you need them. Astra also integrates nicely with most commonly used plugins like WooCommerce or LearnDash.”
GeneratePress – “GeneratePress is also light and performs very well. It has a good Schema implementation that can be useful in extreme SEO cases and a good bunch of premade templates.”
Hello – “Another good option is Hello theme. Made by the people who build Elementor itself, it’s obviously tailored for Elementor and works perfectly with it. It is also light and compatible and plays well with most commonly used plugins. In my opinion, it lacks some defaults to start with, but this could be an advantage in some cases.”
“We’ve been building WordPress websites for just over a decade and when it comes to selecting themes, we have a lot of experience at understanding what makes a theme a great choice.
When you’re building a website with Elementor, there are a few great options, depending on your experience with WordPress.”
Astra – “Astra is the perfect theme if you’re on a budget. Astra is free and will let you design almost any site you can imagine.
Astra is lightweight, works perfectly with Elementor, and both can be optimized well to load in just a second or two. If you have a little bit of money to spend, Astra PRO expands the theme functionality further, giving you even more ways to customize the design of your website.”
OceanWP – “OceanWP is similar to Astra, except that it has several ready-made layouts to import with ease. If you want to make a website quickly and don’t want to spend much time thinking about the design, OceanWP helps you reduce the time it takes to complete your site. This is an ideal theme for a hobbyist website.”
Hello – “Hello Elementor is a theme released by the team behind Elementor, so it’s no wonder as to why it is the best theme for Elementor.
It’s a lightweight theme that gives you total control over how the website looks by editing the entire website through the Elementor interface. This includes creating the site header, footer, product pages, blog posts, and more. You will want the Elementor PRO plugin, which has a similar cost to purchasing a theme (about $50) but comes with a robust number of features.”
Hello – “I always use a child theme when developing a new website with Elementor. This enables me to add my own functionality like shortcodes and custom query filters.
For this reason, I prefer not to have any unnecessary code that needs overwriting, so my go-to theme choice is Hello by Elementor.
This barebones theme has been developed by the team at Elementor to not get in the way of designers and developers. There are no settings that conflict with the Elementor builder such as header designers or colour selectors. And the best part is – it’s free!”
“If you need more options then I would probably look at something like Astra, or Layers which is also developed by Elementor.”
“Elementor is a great, relatively lightweight yet powerful page builder. If you have the Pro version, it’s a full site builder. Either way, you want a theme that lets Elementor work its magic without getting in its way.
Here are my top three recommendations.”
Kadence – “A relative newcomer, this theme is lightweight, yet fantastically intuitive and flexible. It pairs very well with Elementor (and other page builders) and comes in both a free and a pro version. But just the free version of each is more than enough to craft a great website for yourself, your business, or your clients.
One advantage it has over the others in this list is its drag-and-drop header and footer, even in the free version. You can probably get by quite nicely with the free version of Elementor, given just those two features alone.
KadenceWP is gaining popularity very quickly. Check out some of the fast-growing influx of reviews and tutorial videos to see why.”
OceanWP – “This theme has an amazing array of customizer and per-page options, along with free and paid add-ons – things that normally might mean overkill when paired with something as feature-packed as Elementor. However, since OceanWP is specifically intended to work with Elementor, it’s a logical choice. In fact, if you install OceanWP, you’ll keep seeing notifications to install Elementor, alerts that remain on your WordPress dashboard until you install Elementor.
All you need is the free version of each to have an amazing website. In fact, you’ll find that there’s little you can’t do even with a base installation of each. But since OceanWP has some premium add-ons specific to Elementor, there’s always more you can do with the latter, and those features do not require Elementor Pro.”
Astra – “As with the other themes, you can start with the free version of Astra as well as the free version of Elementor. Both provide a great set of creative features. Astra also has a more extensive library of pre-built sites than do the first two themes I mentioned, including many free ones.
And Astra makes the process of installing Elementor so easy. You just install Astra, then install the Astra Sites plugin. From there, choose the page builder you want to use (select Elementor), then preview the beautifully-crafted full web sites. When you find one you like, you’ll see what plugins it needs.
It’s best to start with a free one that uses only free plugins. Follow the on-screen instructions, and not only will the site – replete with graphics – be installed, but also all the plugins, including Elementor. While Astra has fewer customization options in its free version than do the first two themes I mentioned, it has an impressive collection of pre-built sites, and there are a lot of YouTube tutorials to get you started. Furthermore, Astra has a pro upgrade that includes Elementor-specific add-ons. Even if you don’t upgrade, it’s nice to know that the company behind Astra (Brainstorm Force) creates its theme with Elementor in mind.”
“Those three are the ones I’d recommend, in the order that I listed them. That said, I’d like to give an honorable mention to GeneratePress as well, but only the pro version of that theme. Its free version is not as customizable, at least as of version 2.4. It’s also the only one of the free themes I mentioned that doesn’t let you remove the theme vendor’s footer credits in any easy way (even if you have some technical/coding skills, you’ll find it to be tricky). If a theme vendor is going to make removing its footer credits from a free theme that difficult, then I suggest either purchasing its paid version or going with a different free theme.”
Hello – “At Proxy, we only use the Hello theme for every site we create! Hello theme is made by Elementor, for Elementor.
It’s a plain, light-weight theme with absolutely no bells and whistles, which makes it absolutely perfect for Elementor’s built-in theme builder. Think of Hello theme as the bare minimum requirement for a theme that allows Elementor to step in and do most of the work.
WordPress themes simply don’t hold the value that they used to. In the past, we’d plug in a theme, hope our content and effect requirements would fit easily into that theme, and pray like hell that the next update of WordPress didn’t break the site!
That’s all changed since switching to Elementor and utilizing their built-in theme builder. There are no limits designing custom layouts, headers, footers, sidebars, pop-ups, blogs, storefronts, 404 pages, archive pages, and more.
As an added bonus, Hello theme is consistently faster than even the default WordPress theme! This is very important when every second loading can negatively impact conversion rates.”
Astra – “I am going to be bold and recommend only one theme to use with Elementor and WordPress. ASTRA and its PRO plugin. They have put together one of the fastest, cleanest and neatest themes I have seen that works really well with Elementor.
I have spent time trialing several other themes and although there are some great themes out there, I find that many interfaces are glammed up and sadly this hinders them from taking top spot. Astra’s interface seamlessly integrates with WordPress allowing you to quickly and easily tweak site settings. No need to now relearn or decipher a new system.
I am all about efficiency and simplicity. This translates to faster and cleaner builds for me and my customers.”
“I use Elementor’s Hello Theme most often, because it works seamlessly with Elementor Pro. If you need some more customizing, I like to use OceanWP.”
Hello – “When working with Elementor as a Theme Builder (building Header-Templates etc.) I always recommend using a theme that is as simple as possible. The most important reason for that is site speed. If your theme loads a lot of css and all the Elementor-styling comes on top, that can slow your site down. So if you choose to use a lightweight theme, you don’t load much unused css.”
OceanWP – “The same is the case for OceanWP. That theme does have some customizing possibilities for the header and other templates. So if you intend to use Elementor as a Page Builder only, without many templates for header, footer and so on, I would say it is a great theme to use.”
Hello – “The only theme I use with Elementor is their own Hello theme. The main advantage of working with Elementor Pro is that it’s not just a page builder, but a theme builder.
When I have installed themes before, especially expensive ‘all-in-one’ premium themes, I find myself spending hours stripping out features and content that I don’t actually need. With the Hello theme, you start from a blank canvas and build upwards.
By pairing the barebones Hello theme with Elementor you have total control of every single pixel and part of your website. You essentially build your theme exactly how you want it.
The other main advantage of using Elementor as a theme builder is speed. Websites built with the Hello theme are lightning-fast, mainly because you aren’t carrying any excess weight of features and code you don’t need on your website.
When it comes to building a website with the Hello theme, it might take a little bit longer to build the website, as you’re starting from a blank canvas, but it does ensure you end up with exactly the website you want and with no compromise.”
Astra – “Astra is my first choice due to its flexibility in terms of customization, even in the free version. They have their custom-built Customizer controls that allow users to navigate through the options easily. The super fast nature and clean, minimal UI is one of the most important reasons why I recommend Astra to my clients. Their main focus area is Elementor and they have an Elementor Addon. So they put extra effort to ensure their theme works perfectly with the #1 page builder in the industry. After testing many different themes, I found Astra to be the most flawless one.”
OceanWP – “I’d vote for OceanWP as my next favourite. They have their own Customizer control with plenty of options as well. OceanWP is focused on Elementor. Loading super fast is one of their priorities as well. And they do it pretty well. They have some popular third-party integrations available in the free version including Woocommerce, EDD and so on.”
Jethro Theo Paul
“When I first got started with WordPress design, one of the things that usually get me stuck as a newbie was deciding which theme to use for each project. Thinking about it now, it makes me cringe and want to go “arrrghh!”
When Elementor came with its Theme Builder feature, It was an aha! moment for me, being able to design every aspect of my site exactly the way I want it.
Here is my top theme for Elementor”
Hello – “Anyone who appreciates speed, easiness and simplicity in a website will surely go with this theme. I like the fact that it’s lightweight and devoid of distractions in the name of Theme Options. Since it was released, I’ve always worked with Hello Elementor and integrate any other plugin I need for any feature. The result it gives is incredible and rewarding when compared with other themes. You also don’t experience bloat or styles breakdown due to heavy dependence on external resources, as is often the case with other themes.
So my number 1 choice for Elementor is Hello Elementor.”
Astra – “My favorite theme to use with Elementor is Astra. Astra is one of the most popular themes available on the market and has over 1 Million users. Astra is built on quick and clean code and consistently updated, so you know you have a great theme development team behind the product. It is super flexible allowing you to create almost any type of header, footer, sidebar, and blog post. Because other than that Elementor handles the rest of your website’s layout and design.”
Hello – “When I work on Elementor projects, this is my go-to theme. It is light, made for Elementor, and is client-friendly. I say “client-friendly” because it does not have a ton of WordPress Customizer options. I use a Child theme because I like to write a lot of custom code, so having a child theme allows me to update the Parent theme (Hello Theme) by not hurting my client’s sites.
A tip when using this theme is to enqueue the priority so you don’t have to overwrite all CSS styles.
Add: add_action(‘wp_enqueue_scripts’, ‘hello_elementor_child_enqueue_scripts’, 15); to your functions.php file.”
Genesis Framework – “There’s only ONE theme I will ever recommend, and it’s the StudioPress Genesis Framework. This framework works well, whether you use Classic Editor, Gutenberg, or any page builder, including Elementor.
It is the ONLY theme I recommend due to the fact, that out of the box, there’s not a lot of overhead, and it doesn’t profess to be the Swiss Army knife of themes. I’ve found it’s decent on speed, and after you’ve added your preferred plugins and content, it’s easy to optimize further for speed.
Additionally, it’s a theme that’s SEO ready, and easy to use. Just choose a child theme and add your content. However, if you want dynamic content, a page builder like Elementor can help with extra styling to your pages.
Other than that, together, Genesis and Elementor make creating content less of a headache.”
“My standard themes are:Hello, Astra and GeneratePress because they are lightweight, have good support and good integration with Elementor.”
Hello – “I use Hello to have a fast lightweight empty theme when I use Elementor to completely design the whole website for my clients. It gives me creative freedom in my website design work.”
Astra – “Astra uses no jQuery which can be an advantage to avoid render-blocking issues, you can use pre-built sites that were built using Elementor and that can be used to create a full website very easily. It is possible to create different parts for your website, like header and footers, very easily.”
GeneratePress – “GeneratePress uses also no jQuery, which I think is important. I love GeneratePress for the standard accessibility which is important for people with a disability of any form. It is also lightweight.”
“Ask me which theme is best for Elementor, and I’ll happily counter that with a question of my own: “Would you like to be given a fish to feed you once, or would you prefer to be able to do all the fishing yourself, so you can feed yourself every day without depending on anyone else?” Simply because with Elementor themes you can have the best of both worlds!
My primary theme choice is primarily directed at the target group I consider myself to be part of: web designers with frontend development skills, who love ultimate creative freedom and tend to work with tools that speed up their workflow and efficiency.
As a user of Elementor Pro, my primary vote goes to Hello Theme. For those who are less attached to the wish to be the ultimate master and micromanager of every itching detail, but want to whip up a great looking site in no time, my secondary vote goes to Astra.”
Hello – “Hello Elementor is a blank canvas, but under the hood all the necessary settings, including responsiveness, are right. No junk, no clunk, no funky widgets that preload all kinds of scripts that you never needed anyway. Because who wants a slow truck when a high-speed motorbike is what you need, right? Once you get the hang of using the global styling features that come with Elementor, it’s unbeatable.
Besides that, as an Elementor tutor, this theme is my favourite to teach agencies how to convert their flat designs into smoothly running websites in WordPress, or to port site designs made with another theme. The advantage of a blank slate like Hello, is that you don’t need to spend a lot of time tweaking (or overriding) a gazillion settings when it boils down to details of a design you’re porting.
Another reason to choose the Hello Elementor theme is that it’s created and maintained by the developers of Elementor. As a page builder, Elementor works with literally almost every theme, but not everyone realises that sometimes themes, whether freely available in the theme repository of WordPress.org, or themes with paid support from sources such as ThemeForest, sometimes are abandoned by their respective developers. Depending on all technical bells and whistles a theme has, (parts of) your site can break due to lack of maintenance of the theme. I don’t see that happening with Hello Elementor any time soon. :-)”
Astra – “The first time I tested this theme (about a year ago), its speed and versatility blew me away. Don’t worry, I’m not going to get all nerdy here, reciting all the geek speak facts about what makes this theme so fast. But what I will tell you is that it elegantly caters to professional web creators on one hand, and DIY users on the other hand. Beautifully pre-made full layouts and sections enable you to quickly whip up a decent looking responsive website.
Besides, I think the company behind Astra, Brainstorm Force, isn’t going to go away any time soon either. Just like Elementor, they are solid and put their users’ needs first.”
“The availability of Elementor drag & drop provides the freedom to make changes on a website easily. Also, the best part is the live customizer which lets you view the changes made on the website instantly.”
OceanWP – “My favorite Elementor theme is OceanWP. It is one of the most popular free themes available on the market. It integrates with many WordPress page builder plugins, giving you plenty of ways to design full WordPress websites through simple drag-and-drop maneuvers. It is packed with a ton of customizer features. When used with Elementor page builder, it delivers high-end page designs & advanced capabilities. OceanWP has helped me develop several websites fast and easily.”
Hello – “My second favorite Elementor based theme is Hello Theme. This theme offers tons of Elementor compatible features and is very lightweight. It is flexible for developers, comes with a responsive design, and compatible with a popular eCommerce plugin called WooCommerce.”
Hello – “The Hello Theme is a great choice for experienced designers and developers.
It has simple theme options and works best for people that like to design each page and create their own reusable components.
If you like full control over your design, the Hello Theme covers the basics, is easy to set up, and will probably always receive support since it was made by the creators of Elementor!”
Hello – “I can only recommend the ‘Hello’ theme from Elementor themselves.
As the theme’s description says it is “A plain-vanilla & lightweight theme for Elementor page builder”. Which it truly is. I cannot imagine anything better.
The fact that it is from the house of Elementor also means that theme conflicts are non-existent. That is our experience so far at least.
And having no styling of its own means there is nothing to compete with when styling within Elementor itself.
I also regularly see that many Elementor related issue comments on WP, Facebook groups etc. start with “I am using the xyz theme…” And most of us will know that the ping pong battles between different developers can be time-consuming and frustrating.
The Hello theme instantly removes the occurrence of any of the above headaches.”
“When choosing a theme for Elementor you”ll need to look for the best compatibility, performance and ease of use for you and sometimes your customer. So for me, you can’t go wrong with the following themes.”
Astra – “This is a lightweight theme for WordPress in general and has a free option that works perfectly with Elementor. It’s also compatible with a lot of other great plugins like autoptimize, Learndash & WooCommerce.”
Hello – “If you just want to make sure that your theme is always compatible no matter what version of Elementor you run, Hello is the theme for you. It’s compatible with a lot of plugins and is still small in size.”
- GeneratePress – “For my part, I really prefer to use Elementor with GeneratePress.
The theme is extraordinarily stable, and performance-minded. It’s very lightweight too, so it stays out of Elementor’s way and lets the page builder do the heavy lifting without creating conflicts.
It’s also very customizable, so developers can tailor it to e-commerce, educational, B2B, B2C, or pretty much anything you can imagine.”
Hello – “Highly recommended when you work with both Elementor and Elementor Pro. This is a “blank theme” with no options, so you can freely express your creativity. No incompatibilities with other plugins. Lightweight to speed up your sites.”
GeneratePress – “Great theme when you are working with Elementor free, mainly with the plugin GeneratePress Premium. No incompatibility issues with other plugins. Very useful when working with WooCommerce. Many customization options that can be enabled or not, loading only the code for those enabled. Lightweight and very good support from the developer.”
Astra – “I really like Astra for Elementor build-outs. It’s lightweight and fast. It’s a recommended theme by the Elementor devs, and it’s really easy to set up and get started with. This theme is light but robust enough for most small business websites.”
Twenty Twenty – “Recently, I’ve started to prefer using WP official themes like Twenty Twenty because I know that any security and core features that come out from the official WP team will get added to the official themes. I have been partial to those these days, especially for clients that are a little less tech-savvy or have been burned in the past because they didn’t have a child theme.”
Hello – “I didn’t really care much for this theme myself after giving it a few tries, but it might be something to look into if you don’t like Astra or any of the WP-managed themes. This theme was built by Elementor and has a large user base, so if you ever run into problems with Hello, you could find support quickly and easily. That alone makes this theme a great fit for Elementor sites.”
“With over 5 million active downloads on the WordPress plugin directory, Elementor is arguably the most popular page builder plugin on the market. Not surprisingly, Elementor has gotten widely adopted among developers over the past few years, and that makes it a part of the growing community of theme and plugin creators that are actively supporting this page builder. Although Elementor is designed to be used with any WordPress theme, below I will discuss my top 3 WordPress themes that work best with Elementor.”
Astra – “Astra is one of those WordPress themes that is made to be used with any page builder and Elementor is no exception. The most notable thing about Astra is that it has the largest library of pre-built websites. These are ready to import websites, and you can find any design that will fit your niche.
The Astra Pro version has surprisingly a lot to offer in terms of customization and control. It is possible to create complex layouts, custom navbars, video headers, and anything you can think of all without the need for coding. I believe this to be one of the key aspects of Astra.
In conclusion, choosing Astra is a decision you can’t go wrong with. Apart from the tons of features you can add without coding, it is built for speed, so you can be sure that your WordPress is running fast and smooth.”
GeneratePress – “GeneratePress is one of the WordPress themes that takes loading speed very seriously. The whole theme weights less than 30KB and it loads no dependencies at all.
Elementor is fully supported by GeneratePress, along with other popular page builders. Also, this theme has a lot to offer in terms of usability. It has all the necessary features that you can use to customize any WordPress website. The flexible layout system can help you design more complex designs and have full control over the website branding. It also has included a library of pre-made page templates.
From a developer viewpoint, GeneratePress has many extra filters and actions that are included in the theme core. This gives you more flexibility and control to develop custom features, that are not possible with a clean WordPress version.
GeneratePress truly has a lot to offer, and I recommend using it if you are looking for a developer-friendly theme. It is well documented and has a community forum where you can ask questions and look for advice.”
Sydney – “Sydney is probably the best business WordPress theme that uses Elementor exclusively as a fundamental feature in its design. It has all the necessary features and customizations possible to create a modern online business presence. Sydney fully utilizes the power of Elementor, and with it, you can rapidly develop your layouts with custom Elementor blocks and make your website stand out from the competition.
Sydney theme comes in both a free and a paid version. Surprisingly it has a lot to offer even in the free version, and it is completely possible to build a fully working WordPress business website with it. But to get the most out of the Sydney theme, consider purchasing the Pro version. With it, you get a multitude of different custom Elementor blocks along with tons of different features and customizations to make a modern business website.
To conclude, if you are looking to build a business website with Elementor, this theme can help you to easily build different kinds of professional looking websites.”
Francesco De Mento
Essentials – “Essential is one of the best themes for WordPress. Especially for those who start from scratch and need an idea. It contains a very varied amount of components to be assembled to create impactful landing pages.
For those who don’t even have an idea to assemble, Essentials also contains ready-made templates to be filled with content only. Seeing is believing!”
Ohio – “Ohio is one of the most versatile themes. With a system of widgets and components suitable for every need (blog, design agency, portfolio, online shop, etc.) it is modular and easy to use, even for the less experienced.
A Figma file is also provided along with the theme with all the elements to create the design before publishing it online.”
“I recommend selecting a theme based on the page builder technology the client prefers. As a developer, I expect each client to maintain their own content and just let me know whenever they get stuck. After all, that’s what page builders are for. It’s preferable to “keep it in the family” by bundling your theme, page builder tool, and premium blocks (forms, sliders, etc.) with a single vendor to simplify support and avoid finger pointing as much as possible.”
Storefront – “The default choice is WooCommerce Storefront official theme using the native WordPress Block Editor, which has come a long way over the past year. The Storefront theme is maintained by the core WooCommerce team and is vetted for compatibility with official marketplace plugins. Consider this your safest option. Use the built-in CSS customizer to style it however you wish and load your Google Fonts. Consider the Storefront Powerpack plugin for more controls, especially if you do not know CSS styling code. For premium blocks such as contact forms or galleries I’d keep to this official family and use JetPack by WordPress.com and only enable the modules that you use, not “the kitchen sink”.”
Astra – “Taking things to the next level, the Astra theme by Brainstorm Force with its optional Pro plugin brings a great deal more settings to control your header, footer, sidebars, fonts, colors, and essential global elements. While this theme can work with other page builders I recommend sticking to the WordPress Block Editor. I’ve found this theme doesn’t style the native WooCommerce Blocks consistent with WooCommerce templates and the vendor points the finger at WooCommerce, which I consider poor. Nevertheless this is a favorite theme and performs well. Its developer also offers Ultimate Addons for Gutenberg and other page builders, as well as a popular marketing plugin, Convert Pro.”
Hello – “My top choice for larger sites is Hello Elementor, the free theme for the free Elementor page builder. If using this basic theme one needs to add the Elementor Pro plugin. Elementor is considered one of the best page builders available, though no page builder is 100% perfect and this one does run a bit slower on the admin side. The Pro plugin is important here because it includes global settings for your site’s fonts, colors, buttons, etc. Plus it adds a Theme Builder tool that loads stock templates or allows you to customize templates for content other than static pages. For example, headers (plural as you can have multiple), footers, blog post archives, blog post singles, shop pages, single products, and more.”
GeneratePress – “I recommend GeneratePress (pro version) as this is the only theme I use now. When I began designing sites using the Elementor plugin, I quickly found that I needed a theme that was both compatible with the plugin but also allowed me complete control over the appearance. Although some free themes can look stylish, I find that most are incredibly limited, and limiting in terms of design, and that you’re unable to change key elements (such as fonts or colouring). When using the Elementor Pro plugin that isn’t such a big issue, but it can be with the free version when you want to change theme elements.
GeneratePress is laid out in an intuitive way so is super easy to use and it also lets me turn off certain key elements, namely the navigation and the footer, so I’m able to design and display these with Elementor. Adding Google Analytics and the like is also super easy with GP Elements (previously Hooks).
Also, for online shops, GeneratePress, Elementor and WooCommerce all work well together so I have design control over nearly all of the shop (not everything just yet but still, pretty good and better than using a paid Woo theme or have mismatched styling…).
Finally, the guys who created GP are constantly working to improve it and are helpful when customers get in contact, even if it’s about something related to, but not really about, GP. The peace of mind that they know their stuff and are accessible, is priceless. Unless something happens to change my mind, I envisage using GP for a looooooong time. I highly recommend it.”
“In general, I use only 2 themes for my work.”
Astra – “It’s a light theme, which has a basic design.
Astra theme is good for:
- You want to create a simple site and you aren’t that skilled/experienced using Elementor
- You want to create a site, but you don’t have much time to get the job done
Hello – “This is the best theme for development when you have Elementor skills and enough time for development (because it takes a little longer than with the Astra theme).
Hello Elementor theme is good for:
- You are skilled and familiar with Elementor
- You have adequate time for proper development
Astra is the best choice if you need to choose a theme with pre-existing designs because there are additional features which aren’t included in the Hello theme like a 404 page, a search page etc. It saves you a lot of time.”
The Hello theme is the best choice if you want to have a very light theme, without extra files on the site (no unnecessary CSS styles and JS code). But because of this leanness, you need to create additional pages such as a 404 page, a search page and secondary pages. Sometimes it isn’t as comfortable and you don’t have time for this extra work. Also, it’s important that you are skilled with Elementor otherwise it will take you forever to put together a functional site.”
Hello – “If you’re using Elementor, its because you want control over your design. So I wouldn’t recommend any other theme than Hello – created by Elementor themselves.
Hello provides the absolute basic theme structure to run a WordPress website. There’s really not a lot to say about it, in a good way. The purpose of this theme is to provide you with ultimate control and minimise unused code/content within your build.
Before Hello, we used Astra Theme. Like Hello theme, it’s pretty stripped back, but we were using it with an intention to overwrite its design style.”
OceanWP – “Of all of the themes I have used, OceanWP has been the most customizable. Using it alongside Elementor has also been a breeze. I have not had any trouble with them not playing nice together. Even if you use Elementor’s theme builder, there are still numerous customizations you can do with OceanWP. One of the best is the custom page layouts and also the customizations with Woocommerce. When looking at page speed and performance, at first OceanWP might look like it would slow down your site, however, once you turn on the performance settings, you’ll see that OceanWP doesn’t hold you back from getting your site performing at top speed.”
Rey – “Definitely my first choice when it comes to creating an ecommerce site with a strong visual impact where the graphic component has significant weight. This is a relatively new theme, perfect for ecommerce (and also for any other type of website) but especially for Elementor, as it perfectly integrates.
A lot of features and effects, good code and a high level of customization and functionality saves a lot of time and gives you the chance to have a solid foundation from where you can build a beautiful and noteworthy website.
Documentation and customer support are excellent so this is definitely a plus.
Summarizing: flexibility, stability, functionality, modularity, performance, great quality design, well coded, helpful documentation and awesome support – all in one.
If you are looking for a WordPress/Woocommerce Elementor based Theme try this one.”
Astra – “Astra’s a great free theme that plays well with Elementor. It includes its own built in editor but is made to work well with Elementor. Running a child theme is easy as well as Astra has a free child theme creator for those who need help in that area. The team keeps the theme up to date due to the amount of users on the free theme. They also have a premium theme, but I usually go all Elementor now that the 3.0+ versions are stable.”
Hello – “Hello for Elementor is wonderfully fast for 1-3 page sites without blog capabilities. I usually add a child theme for Hello that includes functions for widgets in case the client wants to use blogging and other areas of the site with widgets.”
Hello – “Based on our experience working on multiple free and premium themes with Elementor, we found it much easier to work on the base theme called “Hello Elementor”.
Being a WP development agency, we would like to keep things simple and easy so we can support the clients for the long run.
Some premium themes are great and can really work well for some businesses but if you prefer to keep things simple and easy to manage, Hello theme is a great place to start.”
“Elementor has passed the stage where we refer to it as a page builder. Elementor is a trustworthy site builder, and together with some other plugins, it can be a real threat to no-code tools.”
Hello – “Since Elementor is a dedicated site builder, we should start with the first mention, Hello theme. The theme is like a canvas for artists; it is easy to install and setup so the user can get to the creative part as soon as possible.”
Astra – “Astra theme was the right tool at the right time, which gained the status of the fastest growing theme in the industry. It comes packed with many translations; it does not use jQuery and has an excellent performance score. Along with all these features, it also comes with an extensive collection of pre-built themes that help web designers that are just starting to use Elementor.”
GeneratePress – “While other themes are focused mainly on speed and ease of use, GeneratePress comes with what is missing from the industry at this point; excellent security, accessibility, and being developer-friendly. Not all the themes are perfect, but we, as a custom WordPress development agency, really like to extend a theme without harming its performance or security.”
“This list is not ranked in order. Each one of the presented themes is good for their intended purpose.”
Hello – “Our favorite theme is the free Hello Theme. It’s clean, fast and gives unlimited options for customization. Because we almost always create custom-designed sites we can’t be bound by any Theme restrictions. In addition, it’s really light, without any extra code that could slow down the site. It allows you to create a WCAG 2.1 AA Accessible site with ease.”
“Well, I have tried most of the Elementor themes for my personal and client projects, and here’s what I found to work best.”
Astra – “I love to use the WP Astra theme for Elementor. WP Astra theme is easy to use for professionals as well as for newbies. WP Astra theme has one of the best starter templates. You can also use all those starter templates for other page builders and Gutenberg. WP Astra theme has a free header and footer builder plugin. It works great with WooCommerce and LearnDash. I recommended you use the WP Astra theme if you don’t have Elementor Pro.”
Hello – “Hello theme is recommended by Elementor itself. I used the Hello theme when I want to design a website from scratch. The Hello theme is lightweight and optimized for Elementor. If you have Elemenetor Pro then using Theme Builder you can create a beautiful design. I recommended you to use the Hello theme if you have Elementor Pro.”
“Hello theme works great with Elementor and Theme Builder to create awesome website designs. However, WP Aѕtrа theme is a better option for you if you need a universal theme for Elementor that doesn’t require you to design and build everything frоm scratch.”
“One of the most common questions I hear is, “Will my site be fast if I design/develop it with a page builder?” The answer is of course a big YES, but the truth is that speed depends on many other factors. One factor is the theme you choose.”
Hello – “If you are designing and building pages with your favourite page builder, Elementor, then you do not need to look far in terms of which theme to use for your website. Hello was created by the Elementor team and is a canvas theme which is actually exactly what you need when working with Elementor. You create the Header and Footer as well as the rest of the pages with Elementor, so you do not need anything else to load on your site. Hello is a blank theme. As you hear it, VACUUM. It does not load any files that you do not need since you make everything from scratch with Elementor. That’s why it’s a theme I always use on all my sites, and the speed results are amazing.”
Astra – “If you do not have time to design pages from scratch, then Astra is a very good theme, fully compatible with Elementor and quite fast. It gives you the opportunity with the ready-made sites that it has, with one click, to have ready-made headers and footers and all the pages of a website. I have tried the Astra and I was really impressed by its speed. If I did not have time or I had to build a site very quickly, the Astra theme would be my choice.”
“Elementor is a drag-and-drop page builder for WordPress. The free version includes a limited selection of pre-built templates and customization options. The Pro version includes the Elementor Theme Builder, giving you more creative options and you can then work with any theme.
Web Accessibility is my passion so besides looking for builders and themes that are creative, easy to use and provide good functionality, I also look for its accessibility for persons with disabilities. Elementor is not fully compliant out of the box, although they offer a few instructional blogs giving suggestions on how to make your website Accessible. The free WP Accessibility plugin can help with select Accessibility issues. It’s important to note that no single plugin or overlay can render a website builder to be fully Accessible. Manual efforts are required. Selecting a theme that is Accessible is the best place to start.”
- Hello – “Elementor Hello Theme is a lightweight, FREE theme that has recently been added to the WordPress repository list of Accessibility-Ready themes. This means that it has met the basic requirements for Accessibility by reaching the minimum standards that the WordPress theme review team has set. However, when using this or any theme, designers must still make sure the content, images, colors, navigation, etc. they change or add, are Accessible.
The Hello Theme is Responsive and comes with hundreds of page templates & blocks. It is easily customizable and includes a custom menu so that each website you create with this theme can have a unique appearance. Elementor brags that this theme is very fast and that it is fully compatible with the most popular plugins.”
- Monument Valley – “Monument Valley is an Accessible WooCommerce PREMIUM theme. Very lightweight, fast and easy to install. Plenty of useful and easy to find documentation including a quick start-up guide after installation. With so many new eCommerce sites being created, having a theme that is built for eCommerce, works with the WooCommerce plugin and WooCommerce 3.0 and adheres to the strict WordPress.org accessibility guidelines – is a jewel.
The theme includes a wide variety of layouts, custom colors, typography and hundreds of pre-packed icons plus a child theme generator, if you want to modify the theme. It is responsive, has a real-time preview, in theme customizer, coded to boost SEO and is fast loading. It also supports right-to-left (RTL) languages so you can create multilingual websites with the popular language plugins (Polylang and WPML). So many benefits in one theme.”
“There are lots of other options but these are my top two.”
Astra – “Because it is blazing fast, and has well thought out configurations for WooCommerce and LearnDash as well as other common integrations to meet client and project requirements. To keep my project processes as simple as possible, I wanted to settle for one theme that could be used for all client projects. It is also developed by Brainstorm Force who have leaders in the Elementor space.”
“Over the years, I have been using one theme solidly with Elementor; GeneratePress.
I will get into the reasons why shortly, but let me be honest and upfront, in the last 6 months, I have taken the choice on some of my website projects to build Elementor based sites using Elementor’s Hello theme.
Let’s take a look at GeneratePress though.
This site was designed and built with GeneratePress and Elementor, for the GeneratePress library (by me, shameless plug), at a time when GP to me was the core ‘theme builder’ and Elementor was a new and quick way to create rows and columns and responsive sections without the need for custom code or additional plugins.
Tom has built and evolved GP over those years to something super impressive, and despite that, his attention has remained on producing a stable and robust theme (or framework as I like to refer to it), one capable of creating and running every site imaginable.
The options available as a premium user will give you every single tool you need to support a standalone website build, or even without the elements and other premium features turned on, GP is an excellent frame to house your Elementor build.
What stands GP apart from the rest of the themes out there is their no-bloat approach, speed optimisation focus, and the coding evolution, which gets better and better every year. Of course, not forgetting their phenomenal support and the community surrounding it, which in my opinion is one of the best out there, period.
For me, it is a no brainer, GeneratePress, along with its Elements tool (formerly hooks), allows me to build and hook in complex code for bespoke builds with ease. It remains one of the best themes on the market and a great place to start if you wish to have a definite no-bloat code framework at heart.
So why have I chosen to start using Elementor’s Hello theme instead?
Well, in some instances, I haven’t. I still have several GP and E websites running, and running very well, and when looking at user requirements, and coding complexity, if GP fits the bill, it is on the table in a heartbeat.
Long story short – GP has developed into its own standalone website builder with GenerateBlocks, and Elementor developed into its own theme builder; the two have started to cancel each other out, in my opinion, so I increasingly have to consider which I feel will work better for my clients’ user experience, not my own.
GeneratePress is excellent for me, with its Elements tool, and it’s compatibility with Elementor, it is just the go-to.
It is excellent for most general designers and developers out there, who may have a little coding knowledge behind them to create those custom sections, or perhaps not, as I say the community is epic and always sharing custom code!
What I have found though is that my clients who want to be ‘hands-on’ with the content of their websites have had a little more success with dragging and dropping Elementor widgets and making style changes on the fly using Elementor’s customiser than they have with GP’s customiser options.
Please Note; this opinion is based on my clients’ usage and does not reflect the overall user experience GP has to offer, it really is a great theme, and I personally find it one of the easiest to customise with.
At this point, I had found myself turning off some of GP’s premium features. They were not needed by my clients, and instead were just being used by me – again OK if I am building a bit more of a bespoke layout or want to hook some code in throughout – but for the regular everyday small business owner who does not need this and wants to do it themselves, these features were just overkill (which is a testament to GP as a product – they really do offer a lot).
It was with this in mind that the Hello theme just made sense to simplify the user experience for the client. It offers a relatively no-bloat option, lightweight, and is obviously built for use with Elementor, so instead of confusing the client with multiple ways to customise the same site, I just choose a theme based upon the client need at the time.
Ultimately, both themes have a place on my mantel. GeneratePress is and will always remain one of the best themes out there, supported by a community of genuinely epic superstars.”
GeneratePress – “If you want a theme that will give you a little extra development space, using their elements (hooks), GP is the theme to go for, hands-down every time.”
Hello – “For those who don’t need that extra wiggle room, and are looking for something simple to base their Elementor build on, then go for the Hello theme, you can’t go wrong.”
“As always when developing any site, even with Elementor, make sure you install your own Child theme and use staging and backups regularly.”
“Let’s be real here… There are so many themes out there to choose from and, it is really easy to ruin your site’s performance if you select the wrong one. Depending on your level of expertise with Elementor, there are three options that I would recommend.”
Hello – “Elementor made your choice very easy if, and only if, you are going to leverage all of the features within the pro version. The beauty of the Hello Theme is its simplicity. Seriously, there are no crazy options within the customizer to learn as the theme is designed to satisfy WordPress’s basic needs, and that’s it.
However, while the theme is not complex, it is designed with the expectation that you will be using Elementor Pro’s templates, theme builder, and all of the new global site settings options.
I have been exclusively building Elementor Pro websites for over three years now, and the Hello Theme is all I prefer to use for my clients.”
Page Builder Framework – “Mapsteps produced the most stable theme that can be leveraged effectively across all page builder platforms. It truly does not matter if you are using Elementor Pro or Divi. The theme works well and isn’t bloated with options to slow your site down. I have used the pro version for several clients who wanted a light theme that leveraged the WordPress customizer. By using the Page Builder Framework Theme you can still choose to use all of the Elementor Pro site options, or you can use the same global theme items within the theme it’s self.”
OceanWP – “Now we are getting into the “consumer” level of themes. While OceanWP is not a lite theme, it offers so many customer-friendly options, demos, and layouts that a new designer can build a beautiful website. Options abound for anyone who wants to use this theme with WooCommerce, have SEO tagging built-in, and strong documentation. If you want a theme that provides a ton of options and custom build plugins that can be used within the theme… then OceanWP is the right choice for you.”
“All three of the themes are solid options depending on your skill level with Elementor Pro and WordPress. While I may use the Hello Theme as often as I can, because the extra options within other themes are just that, options I don’t use, I have had good experiences with both Page Builder Framework and OceanWP.”
Hello – “Most suitable for non-ecommerce websites. The theme is fast and simple, allowing developers and Elementor builders alike to build websites that perform really well. It is more important than ever to have a website that is not bloated.”
Woostify – “For easy-to-customise WooCommerce stores. The theme is relatively robust and support is exceptional. Woostify allows you to use Elementor to customise common WooCommerce pages. We save around 7 plugins in comparison to using alternatives like Crocoblock.”
GeneratePress – “For simple WooCommerce stores. If you need to get a very simple WooCommerce store up and running quickly then this is our go-to theme. It is very reliable, fast and easy to use. It is also well-reviewed by our customers who find it easy to use.”
“Choosing themes for WordPress in general can be a very subjective thing. The great thing about Elementor is that one theme can have literally thousands of completely different variants if you know how to work the software. So for me, the best theme is always the one created within the theme builder of Elementor itself. This can be personalised however you want it, and it’s now been made even easier with some of Elementors most recent updates. Global fonts and colours mean that whatever your underlying theme is, the most important factor is that it is very lightweight to make sure your site is going to run as fast as it can do with a page builder.
My favourite themes for Elementor are as follows…”
Hello – “Although I always create my own themes using the theme builder, for the underlying theme I would choose Hello by Elementor themselves. Specifically the child version. It is very lightweight, with no bells and whistles. Which means you can make your sites fast and secure.”
Kava – “Kava is an honorary mention as it gives you the option to install the child theme by default and gives you a few additional options that Hello doesn’t have. If you use the Crocoblock theme installer it also comes with a bunch of installable templates and demos that you can use to get the smaller more simple sites built super fast. Very useful if you have clients who don’t have a large budget, want something they can edit easily and that is still going to look good.”
“I’ve always been a massive advocate of Elementor since its conception, I use it on almost all of my clients’ sites and it gets better with every update. In short, I recommend you get the Hello child theme and then build your own variant on top using the theme builder inside Elementor.”
Hello – “Hello is Elementor’s free base theme for creating websites from scratch and my go-to theme when building a website using Elementor.
If you are looking for a completely blank canvas to start from, this theme is for you.
It comes with no design elements or templates and a fundamental CSS model.
If that scares you then look further down the list of theme recommendations.
This theme is ideal for professional designers and developers wanting to create a bespoke lean site from the ground up, without the hassle of having to remove or override CSS, HTML elements and pre-defined templates.
Did I mention it’s free!!”
GeneratePress – “I’ve been using GeneratePress successfully for a year or so on specific web projects.
This theme is lightweight and focused on SEO, ideal for blogs, information and corporate sites looking to rank quickly on Google.
There are premium modules and templates which quickly extend the base theme.
The free version of the theme is good, but to make the most of it, you should buy the premium version for around USD 50 per site for one year’s support and access to all the paid modules and access to the template library.
Quickly customise any of the theme’s templates with Elementor to achieve your ideal website design.
Perfect for site creators who want a flexible, lean, fast theme to tweak with Elementor.”
OceanWP – “I love OceanWP because of the vast amount of niche templates (they call them “demos”) you can import with a single click.
This theme is perfect for quickly bumping out a professional-looking niche website.
It has one of the fastest load times amongst similar types of themes and with WooCommerce support makes it a winner for shop owners.
Pricing won’t break the bank at around USD 40 per site for one year’s support and access to the premium modules and demo library.
OceanWP is 100% compatible with Elementor allowing website and shop owners to customise headers, footers, content and templates quickly and easily.”
“You’ve got to admit it – in terms of code optimization, design freedom, and overall cleanliness of the code, no visual editor will be an ideal tool compared to tedious code implementation using just HTML, CSS, and PHP.
Writing code from scratch is perhaps the most elegant and versatile solution for deploying pages. However, it comes with a long waiting time for the final product and a high cost, which not every client wants or can afford.”
Hello – “The ideal balance between ease of implementation and design flexibility is the theme Hello Elementor. “Hello” is the bare minimum, allowing you to build a website template without imposed restrictions.
There are no predefined headers, footers, pop-ups, or 404 pages here. Each of these elements can be created from scratch, giving the designer freedom instead of being confined to the specific framework imposed by the creator of the theme.
Thanks to Hello, you can ensure the highest possible cleanliness of the code, which will positively affect loading times. It does not include any features or styling.
The only disadvantage of Hello comes from its main advantage. The lack of template interface elements means that the production of the website takes much longer than using themes such as Astra or OceanWP, in which you only need to choose one of the ready-made sets.
Oh, and it’s for free.”
Phlox – “Phlox Pro, more often than not when combining a WordPress website build with Elementor we choose to use Phlox Pro theme. It is lightweight and very flexible for our liking. By flexibility I mean that if we are building a basic website it can easily be used or even through to a complex ecommerce build with Woocommerce, it does a great job.
Things we like about Phlox Pro…
- Works well with our preferred caching software Litespeed. Caching is just as important as a good theme for your website, ensuring fast load times for visitors, and can make or break any website!
- Seamless integration with Elementor makes it a breeze to build most styles of WordPress website easily, quickly and professionally.
- Loads of templates with demo content available.
- Constantly maintained and updated. Having a theme from trusted developers that are constantly looking to improve their theme and update regularly is a must.”
Hello – “Made by the same team who built Elementor itself, it’s a boilerplate that works seamlessly with Elementor, and even better with Elementor Pro. It doesn’t come with bloated stuff that makes the site heavier and slower, therefore it’s perfect if you want to take care of everything with Elementor Pro without any “bells & whistles” coming from the theme.”
_s (Underscores) – “Being powered by Automattic (the folks behind WordPress), you’re guaranteed well-written code. Like Hello, it’s more of a boilerplate than a theme, and you will need either some coding knowledge or Elementor Pro to design dynamic content such as archive pages, headers, footers, single posts templates etc.”
Astra – “If you need more than a boilerplate because you don’t want to set up every dynamic template, and you want more pre-built templates to start from (e.g. LearnDash integration, or more out-of-the box features for WooCommerce), AstraWP is a great choice.”
“Without a doubt, Elementor has been a game-changer within the industry. However, choosing the right theme for Elementor can be a tricky process as it comes down to your end goal. Are you looking for something aesthetically pleasing or lightweight & stripped back.”
Astra – “As an agency, we settled on Astra which performs incredibly well with Elementor. It looks great, has been built well behind the scenes & has great speed performance.
One slight issue with Elementor is when creating sticky transparent headers for your site. Astra effortlessly solves this problem for you as a designer.
The starter templates for Astra really are incredible. They have a whole catalogue of premade Elementor templates that you can preload into your website in less than a minute. You can then customise these layouts to fit your or your customer’s brief. Creating a beautiful site can take only a couple of hours.
Astra is now my go-to when building an Elementor site.”