8 Key Steps to Do When You Change Your WordPress Theme: Don't ignore them
Sometimes, changing your theme is essential for having better speed and performance. However, this is often accompanied by a big mess up in the codes which would lead to an opposite result.
To make sure that you are not losing even a visitor, there are a few steps to take just after you finish changing your WordPress theme. These steps include:
1- Add the code snippets
As we mentioned in our previous article, we have to take note of all the code snippets in our theme, then add them after changing the theme.
Now, it is time to do that. Start copying and pasting all the snippet codes you got in your new theme, and preview the site to make sure they are working.
2- Test all you installed WordPress plugins
Every website has at least 3 running plugins. Actually, I have at least 15 plugins and am thinking of adding more.
The problem is that once you change your theme, some of your installed plugins may stop working. Therefore, you have to check them one by one and ensure that the installed plugins work perfectly with the new theme.
3- Test New WordPress Theme Across Browsers and Devices
You already previewed how the theme looks on browsers and devices, but it is not enough. Just after changing your theme, open your website on different browsers and devices to make sure it looks good as you imagined. Take your time. Although most of your visitors will be using Google Chrome, you have to make sure that it also works great in other browsers like Microsoft Edge, Opera, Firefox, brave, Safari, and more. After all, hundreds of millions of users are still using these browsers worldwide, and we don't want to lose a visitor.
4- Delete WordPress Plugins You No Longer Need
When you install a certain theme, WordPress may install certain plugins with the theme. Simply, Go to the plugin section on your website and delete the ones which you don't need anymore.
5- Deactivate the maintenance mode
If you turned on the maintenance mode while you were changing the theme, it is now the time to go live again.
Remove this mode, and go on.
6- Let Your Users Know Your New Website is Live
If you have a way to contact your readers like emails, push notifications, social media accounts, phone numbers, etc… do whatever you can to let all your readers know that your website is live.
This will let your audience know that your site is back, and will let them curious to know the changes made to your site. You will probably get a big number of visitors that day.
7- Test Loading Speeds for Your New WordPress Theme
Once you've finished the new theme and checked all the plugins, it is time to check the speed. As the main goal of changing a theme is to have better performance, you must be expecting that your new website will be faster than ever. So, make the speed test with the same tool you previously tested your website's speed with before changing the theme.
We hope you get better scores on this speed test.
If you find out that the new theme is slower than before, then you must check all the elements that are slowing your website like images, caches, firewalls, etc… and solve everything. Then, you have to take the test again.
8- Make sure you get a good WordPress Website Bounce Rate
The percentage of people who visited your website and left quickly without visiting any other page is the bounce rate. If it is too low, then your page is not encouraging enough to let your visitor stay enough and visit more pages.
After changing your theme, it is crucial to monitor your bounce rate by adding navigation menus, internal links, popular posts widgets, and more.
Having so many plugins on the site is not good at all. If you use the Neve theme or GeneratePress, your site, and if you have up to 5-6 plugins (really needed), the site will literally fly.
I also disagree with Hasan on one thing. Regarding SEO plugins. People have explained what these plugins actually do and you can do it all without plugins.