Best WordPress theme framework: Details, Pros, Cons, exclusive list of best ones

WordPress theme framework

WordPress is one of the most popular platforms for building websites. Currently, around 48% of websites on the Internet are powered by WordPress.

We earn a commission when you buy through the links on this page. Affiliate disclosure.

But there is an inherent flaw with WordPress websites. As they are built from templates & themes, there is limited room for customization. So it’s possible that you might now get the results that you expect.

Fortunately, there is a solution. If you use WordPress Frameworks, you get a lot of flexibility & customization. In this blog, I’ll discuss WordPress Frameworks, how they are different from WordPress themes & what are the best free WordPress Frameworks available in the Market is.

Let’s start digging.

What is a WordPress Framework?

WordPress Framework is a set of codes & files that acts as a base for building any WordPress theme. It decides the visuals, basic functionality, & other features of any theme.

Using WordPress Framework, developers can tweak the theme as per their requirements. So if you need a lot of customization for your WordPress website, WordPress Framework will do the job.

WordPress theme Frameworks are classified into two parts: viz.

WordPress theme framework
WordPress theme Frameworks are classified into two parts
  • In-house theme Frameworks: Developed by bigger enterprises to build their own themes.
  • Independent theme Framework: Paid or Free Framework that anyone can use to build themes.

What is the difference between the WordPress theme & WordPress theme Framework?

WordPress themes are ready-to-use templates that a developer can use to build a website with limited customization options. The benefit here is there is no need to know to code.

On the contrary, WordPress Theme Framework is a library of codes that are used to build multiple themes. It comes with a lot of customization options for the developer. But, the developer must have at least basic knowledge of coding.

After understanding the basics of the WordPress theme framework, let’s check out some of the best WordPress Frameworks lists.

Which are the best WordPress theme Frameworks available?

WordPress theme framework
Which are the best WordPress theme Frameworks available


Genesis has to be at the top of our list. This is one of the most famous & utilized WordPress theme Frameworks.

Its efficiency & simplicity makes it a primary choice of developers. Studiopress Genesis is an SEO-friendly & well-coded theme framework that works well on PCs & Mobiles.

You can alter the colours, elements & multiple other attributes to build a custom theme as per your need. You can add widgets to your pages for better usability.

Genesis comes with three primary page templates:

  • Default
  • Archive
  • Blog Page

Pricing: $59.95/license, $360/year


  • Clean & Minimalist coding for higher efficiency
  • Enjoys good support from the developers
  • It comes with a lot of widgets & child themes
  • Perfect choice for quick website designing


  • You’ll need a lot of coding knowledge to use it
  • It’s expensive as compared to other competitors

StudioPress – Sites that rank higher

All-in-one WordPress solutions with advanced SEO, design, performance, and security. StudioPress provides themes, content sections, full-page layouts, custom block-builders, and Genesis framework.

Studiopress logo


If you are a fan of the drag & drop building, Headway is the right choice for you. It’s equipped with a grid system that allows you to build themes by just dragging & dropping the elements & attributes.

Another feature of the Headway that I liked was its backup snapshots. If you make some mistakes during theme building, you can always revert to your saved snapshots. If you want to add testimonials, reviews, or showcase your offerings, you can use WordPress blocks.

Another benefit of using Headway is it’s compatible with almost all plugins. It’s best suited for Solopreneurs, SMBs & Small Business owners.

Pricing: $89/year (Standard plan), $199/year (Delux Plan)


  • Easy to use with drag & drop facility
  • Compatible with a wide range of plugins
  • A lot of customization options


  • No themes in Standard Plan
  • You’ll have to pay more even after buying a standard plan for some extra features.

Thesis 2.0

The thesis is the most famous & well-known WordPress theme framework in the Market. It directly competes with Genesis for the top rank. The previous version focused more on SEO, while the revised version, Thesis 2.0, is loaded with a host of new features.

These features include widgets, child themes & markup schema, making it extremely attractive for novice website builders. It’s very beginner-friendly & customized as per your needs.

Pricing: $87/year (Basic), $164/year (Basic plus), $197/year (Professional)


  • SEO-friendly
  • It comes with all the modern features
  • Easy to customize with widgets
  • Beginner-friendly


  • Limited Child themes available
  • The drag & Drop feature is not that great
  • Steep Learning Curve

Cherry Framework

If you are someone who loves to code, Cherry is a perfect pick for you. Designed by Template Monster, Cherry is a free framework used by developers globally. It works well with rookie & veteran developers alike.

You can either build a theme from scratch or use page elements for quick theme building.

Cherry is built with Bootstrap CSS, so you don’t have to worry about its responsiveness on mobile. You also get regular updates from the developers. Cherry also comes with built-in version control. This allows your themes to operate at optimum levels even after the updates.

Pricing: Free


  • You can build themes totally as per your needs
  • Suitable for both novice & experienced coders
  • Mobile-friendly
  • Available for free


  • You need at least basic coding knowledge to use this framework
  • You’ll have to pay for child themes


Gantry is arguably the best Free WordPress theme framework right now. Gantry allows you to build themes with its drag & drop features. You can also add built-in or third-party widgets to build themes.

Gantry uses Twitter Boostrap, so themes are fully responsive & highly compatible. You can also add custom CSS to modify your existing website.

Pricing: Free


  • It’s available free of cost for everyone
  • It’s highly responsive & efficient
  • Offers you a lot of versatility & flexibility
  • Best suited for non-tech-savvy individuals


  • The biggest issue is no built-in support for WooCommerce
  • A limited number of child themes
  • Steep Learning curve

Final Thoughts

WordPress Theme Framework is a great way to customize your WordPress website at the core level. It offers you a lot of flexibility & space to work.

The only catch is you must have some knowledge of coding. I hope this detailed guide will help you in selecting the best WordPress theme framework for your website.


Is Gantry available for free?

Yes, Gantry is an open-source framework that anyone can use.

Is it compulsory to have coding knowledge to use the WordPress theme framework?

Yes, you need to have at least some basic knowledge of coding to use them.

Which is the Best Free WordPress Theme Framework?

I like Cherry as it offers a lot of facilities even though it’s free.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top