Why do we buy a WordPress theme? Because we don’t want our site to look like any other WordPress site out there. We want ours to be unique. If that’s the case with themes, then why not with the login page?
Using a custom login page is one of the primary ways of providing unique user experience. It uplifts brand identity, which is crucial for any business to succeed.
For blogs or membership sites that require visitors to log in to access content, WordPress’s default login page is the starting point. Before someone can access any subscriber-only material, they need to log in to the site first. Think about it. When you’re about to log in to the “members-only” area of a newly purchased membership site and you see the same old login screen that you’ve seen on every other WordPress site, how does that make you feel? The effect is slightly dampened, if not significantly. That’s why your business needs a customized version of the WordPress login page that’s tailored to the look and feel of your business. If you’re building a membership site, a custom login page is absolutely necessary.
If you’re building a custom solution for your clients, then it’s a good idea to white-label the WordPress login page (and preferably the admin area as well). White-labeling your client’s WordPress site uplifts brand identity and work as a marketing agent for inbound traffic.
How do we customize the WordPress login page?
The easiest way to customize a WordPress login page would be to directly edit the wp-login.php file, which is definitely not a good idea. Why? For starters, it’s considered a poor software development practice. Secondly, whenever you update a core revision of WordPress, chances are that the file is replaced with a newer version. As a result, you’ll lose all customizations.
Another way is to build yourself a nice plugin with all customizations. You can add nifty features like links, buttons, and animations and pack them in the plugin. Once you activate the plugin, the changes are immediately incorporated. This is essentially the correct (and safe) way to execute the same process described earlier. Since it is a plugin we’re talking about, you won’t lose the customization while updating WordPress.
Here are a few tutorials to help you achieve this. Keep in mind that implementing these tutorials takes significant time and effort and that you might end up becoming a developer.
- How to Completely Customize the WordPress Login Page by WPMU DEV (difficulty: beginner)
- Customizing the Login Form in the WordPress Codex (difficulty: beginner to intermediate)
- Build a Custom WordPress User Flow by TutsPlus (difficulty: intermediate to advanced)
The third and final method to customize your login page is the easiest one by far—WordPress plugins. Below are some of the best plugins to customize your WordPress login page. We’ve categorized the plugins under free, freemium, and premium to help speed up your plugin hunt.
Keeping in mind the growing list of attacks and vulnerabilities discovered every day, I’ve decided to list only those plugins that are from active developers.
Colorlib Login Customizer is by far the most versatile plugin that allows us to customize the login form for WordPress. It packs all the functionality you will find on premium plugins but in this case, you get everything for free. How cool is that?
Unlike other plugins, Colorlib Login Customizer allows us to do customizations via WordPress Customizer. If you have ever customized or configured any theme, changes are, you are already familiar with its user-friendly interface.
Here are more images to get an idea how powerful is this plugin:
Apart from the usual features like CSS customization, adding images, and background customization, BM Custom Login’s templates feature is unique.
The developer created a Flickr group where the plugin users share their customized version of the login page. You can create a new design using a PSD file provided on the image template folder of the plugin and then upload the new template to the plugin’s resource folder located at /wp-content/plugins/bm-custom-login/images/.
This plugin sports a ton of features, including heavy customization options ranging from background, fonts, animations, colors, opacity, gradients, and other awesome CSS capabilities. It can also change the footer text in the admin dashboard, which is great if you’re building a custom solution for your client.
Demo login screen
A major feature of this plugin is the settings import/export feature. This just makes things so much easier when you’re managing multiple websites.
LoginPress is a convenient login page plugin for WordPress which allows you to customize the style of the layout to the very last detail. Meaning, from colors and images to texts an other whatnot, all is waiting your creative touch. Add a logo, create an enticing background an specify the exact error message that you would like to show your users.
Instead of featuring a boring login page, the web design can now fully follow your branding regulations. It will feel like the page is custom-made from scratch. Yes, that powerful and modifiable LoginPress is. On top of that, any changes you make, you can preview instantly. This process ensures a quick creation while still reaching the same professional levels. Last but not least, the design will also be 100% responsive, compatible with web browsers and high performing. No slowing down of your website’s loading speed.
Thanks to convenient tools like Login Designer, you can build stunning web designs without the need to know how to code. Login Designer is a killer login page customizer plugin that gives you all the rights to craft the niftiest login pages out there. It will not be just easy and quick, but you will also have a lot of fun during the process. With Login Designer, you do the programming work visually. And this makes the extension beginner-friendly, yet perfect for advanced users as well.
You can save yourself loads of time and effort by choosing from predefined templates and go from there. You can improve the ready-made layouts further by changing colors, images and other details. Due to the ease of use, it will feel very comfortable working with Login Designer, almost like you used it already.
Sample login screen generated by the plugin
This is another awesome multilingual plugin to customize your WordPress login page easily. It is responsive in design and supports a ton of customization features, along with a live preview within the settings screen.
Sample plugin login screen
A unique feature of this plugin is the animated background. Set a couple of images, and watch the plugin generate an awesome animated slideshow. You can add your social media accounts with one click. Also, all the options are fully customizable.
These plugins offer basic functionalities for free and charge for the advanced ones. Normally, these plugins have a lot of active users and are mostly updated since they have a higher number of active users.
Demo output of a premium design pack
This is one of the most popular freemium plugins with over 80,000 active installations. The free version includes tons of design features, along with custom CSS and JS code snippets. Extensions, such as stealth login and custom redirects, are housed under the premium tag.
If the default WordPress login page bores you, you better take things to an entirely new degree by employing YITH Custom Login. Instead of keeping it dull, you can now spice it up to your liking. Keeping it original and enticing and add another layer of coolness to your already exceptional website. Once the installation is complete, just hit the activation button and you are ready to move forward.
Under the appearance, you will find the Login Screen appear, where you get to customize your default login page exactly how you want. Keep in mind, you do not really need to be a coder nor a designer to be able to work with YITH Custom Login. It is a beginner- and user-friendly plugin that helps anyone get as creative as they want.
Custom Login Page Templates is another great free login page customizer plugin alternative that will do the trick. You can now fully style the login page of your WordPress blog or website without the need to break a single drop of sweat. To your luck, there is no need to code to make changes and improvements, as Custom Login Page Templates is for everyone. However, it does support custom CSS, in case you are an expert.
You can adjust the background, upload your logo and even choose between five different landing page templates. There is an option to create a light or a dark page and even set a picture of the day as background via WikiMedia. Regardless of how many folks use the login page on your website, even if it is just you, improve the default look according to your wants now.
White Label is a powerful and practical free WordPress plugin that takes the customization of your login page to an entirely new degree. In fact, White Label does not focus only on the login page; it allows you to brand and style the entire WordPress dashboard. Whether you are doing it for yourself or you are working with numerous clients, you can now level things up with a fully customizable look of the login page, as well as the admin dashboard. How insanely amazing does that sound?
The options are endless with White Label, and if you ever want to unlock yourself even more functions, you can always go pro. From adding a custom color or a custom image for the background to uploading your logo, custom CSS and changing the welcome message to just about anything you want, yes, that is all possible with White Label. And more!
All the customization features are available in the free version. The premium version provides a reCAPTCHA verification module as a security addon.
Premium plugins have extended functionalities and come with a basic level of developer support. The following are a few that I found at CodeCanyon. (I’m not going to go over the details since the plugin pages have all the features enlisted.)
Simply put, this plugin is a complete solution for white-labeling your WordPress site. Also, this plugin has over 4,600+ sales and has a rating of 4.66 out of 5.
If you would truly like to take your login page to the next level, all you need is WP Admin White Label Login. This practical customize login page plugin is packed with an enormous collection of features and components. It even includes over 25 ready-to-use templates which you can employ out of the box. Of course, it will take you little time and energy to customize the desired layout to suit your branding regulations to a T. And WP Admin White Label Login ensures a codeless experience, too. Meaning, even if you lack programming and designing knowledge, you will still make a killer login page with it.
Other features of WP Admin White Label Login are image and video backgrounds, Google reCAPTCHA, social logins and an option to translate it to any language you want. The end layout will also be mobile-ready and in tune with all modern web browsers. For extra assistance, you can always hit up the amazing and friendly support.
Developed by iThemes, this plugin comes as part of the iThemes Plugin Developer Suite, which costs $247.
What technique do you prefer to customize your WordPress login page? Would you prefer to build a plugin yourself or use an existing one? If your answer is option 1, we’d love to check out your work. If it’s option 2, what’s your preferred plugin?