In my last post, I discussed how to find out if a website is running on WordPress or some other content management system. The reasons for wanting to find out if a website is running WordPress can vary. But generally, people are curious or learning to become web developers or entrepreneurs. This time we want to show how to determine what WordPress theme a website uses.
I’m currently looking for the right theme for a portfolio website. Although I’ve seen previews of hundreds of themes in the past, I always try to identify the themes of a personal portfolio websites of other freelance professionals. It is a very good technique to see what type of website you can create with different themes and a bit of customization.
If you are scouting for a theme for any website, you’ll certainly be interested in themes used by websites in the same niche. Personally, that alone is sufficient motivation to write this article.
Generally speaking, discovering this information requires either using third party websites or browser extensions. The alternate option is to view the source code and Google the stuff you find in the code. I’ll look at each method individually and point you toward a few helpful tools.
There are three main methods how to check what WordPress theme is that.
- Using Third-Party WordPress Theme Detection Tools
- Using Browser Extensions
- By checking website source code manually
Using Third Party WordPress Theme Detection Tools
1. WordPress Theme Search
WordPress Theme Search allows the user to enter the URL of any website that employs a WordPress theme and presents the details. The information identifies the theme and attempts to identify the author of the theme.
If it finds, that a website uses a proprietary theme or a customized theme, it also reports that. This is a nice choice for identifying WordPress themes, especially if you intend to purchase one based on what you’ve seen on different websites. The theme details the websites reports will let you know if the theme is free for download or whether it requires a purchase.
2. WP Theme Detector
WP Theme Detector is another website that helps you find different WordPress sites’ themes. It comes with great information and helps you find the theme and author.
It also seems to keep data on sites tracked for long time. For example, when I entered colorlib.com to try out the application, among the results it says “Theme has changed at least once since WPTD first tracked this site on”. So it provides information about the changes that have taken place on a website, provided the website in question has been checked in the past by WPTD.
I tried WordPress Theme Search and attempted to find details about colorlib.com and the result displayed was rather limited. – “WordPress detected, but the specific theme details could not be determined. It is probably using a customized or proprietary theme.” Although this is accurate, WPTD provides more information including the author name. The results can vary with both applications for different websites, but it seems the case that WPTD might have the edge.
I retried both applications with WpExplorer.com, I could discern the author and license status for the custom theme their website employs. But again WPTD has the edge, because in addition to the normal stuff they also pointed out that they are a Top 100 WordPress Theme Provider and their themes account for 0.17% of WPTD previous searches.
3. WhatThemes by CodeinWP
Another website, WhatTheme, attempts to perform the same function but doesn’t seem as good as the two websites above. It only points out that a custom theme has been used and identifies them by name, no linked references are provided to the theme’s authors.
Although, the WhatTheme project seems like a great idea, it doesn’t look like it has been fully developed. The idea behind the algorithm of WhatTheme is to recommend themes with similar design elements found in the website being analysed.
Using Browser Extensions
After websites, browser extensions are the next easiest alternative to find out WordPress themes and templates of the websites you visit. Of course, they come with the added benefit of not visiting another website to view theme details.
For Chrome, you can try WordPress Theme & Plugin Detector, I found the latter extension far more effective. I experienced the same problem with WPSniffer, no information provided when used for WordPress websites with customized themes.
Among the three extensions, I think WordPress Theme & Plugin Detector has the edge because it provides information about the author for customized themes and templates. It is very similar to WPTD in that sense.
I looked up the same type of extension for Firefox, I wasn’t able to find an extension worthy of note. If you use Firefox and find an extension for the same to detect WP themes, I’d love to hear it in the comments below.
View Website Source Manually
This is for those of you who are tech-savvy and have accessed the source code of websites for different purposes. We can glean the names of the templates and themes that WordPress websites employ from the Source Code. This is true of all Content Management Systems.
There are always clues pointing toward a website’s theme or template, regardless of the Content Management System. On a different note, if you do not know whether a website is running on WordPress, you can read my previous post, which explains how to find out if a website is running on WordPress.
Open the source code, right click and select View Page Source.
Find the file style.css, which resides in wp-content under the sub directory themes. Finding it manually is takes far too long, just open your browser’s search bar with “Ctrl+F” and type in “style.css”.
You will find style.css as part of a hyperlink, open the link.
As you can see from the screenshot above, the theme name, version, description and author have been provided with details including links and licensing information. You will almost always find this file for every WordPress website and opening the link that accompanies it should open up theme information to you.
Another way you can easily figure out the name of theme you are dealing with through the link that contains the style.css file.
Go back up to the screenshot, and you’ll notice it reads:
This may be modified a bit for different websites but generally the theme’s name precedes the style.css in the link. You could also say the theme name appears after
wp/wp-content/themes/ Either way, you can figure out the name based on the link in and of itself, without accessing the style.css file that provides specific theme information. A simple Google search of the theme name will yield the theme’s author and licensing information.
Conclusion: What WordPress theme is that?
I hope the post was helpful, and you can now easily find out which theme your favorite WordPress websites are using.
In conclusion, identifying the theme used by a WordPress website can be a useful tool for designers, developers, and site owners looking to replicate or modify existing site designs. With a variety of online tools and techniques, it is possible to determine the theme and even some of the plugins used by a WordPress website.
However, it is important to remember that not all tools are foolproof, and some websites may have customized or modified themes that are difficult to identify. Therefore, it is always a good practice to verify any information obtained through these methods and use it as a starting point for further exploration and research. Overall, with a bit of diligence and resourcefulness, anyone can uncover the secrets of a WordPress website’s design and functionality.
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