When building a site on WordPress, selecting your theme is a crucial step — not only does it control the appearance of your site, but it can also affect your site’s load time, performance, and SEO.
But before you continue searching through hundreds of themes in the WordPress directory or third-party marketplaces, did you know you can narrow down your selection by finding out what WordPress theme a site is using amongst the ones you admire most?
Fortunately for all of us, there are two simple methods for finding out what theme a certain website is using in order to customize it for your site. In this tutorial, we’ll show you how to find a theme in your niche that successfully organizes your content to best reflect the look and feel of your brand.
5 Tips for Building a WordPress Website (Guide)
How to Find Out What WordPress Theme a Site Is Using
There are two options for finding out what theme a WordPress site is using. First, you can use a theme detector tool and type in the site URL. Second, if the site uses a custom-built stylesheet or the theme has been heavily modified, you can manually locate the theme’s style.css file in the source code of the website to avoid an error message.
The style.css file will contain a theme header that includes the theme name, author, and version. You can then search for it in the WordPress directory or a third-party marketplace to download and purchase it.
Let’s discuss each of these processes below so you can find out the theme of any site you like to start from scratch or change your theme.
1. Find a Site’s WordPress Theme Using a Theme Detector Tool
Using a theme detector tool is the easiest option for figuring out which theme a site is using. Simply copy and paste the URL of the site and the tool will find and retrieve its theme name in seconds.
While these tools will not be able to detect all custom sites, it might be worth spending a few seconds searching the URL in one of the tools below before moving on to the next step:
While these tools will not be able to detect all custom sites, it might be worth spending a few seconds searching the URL in one of the tools below before moving on to the next step.
Using custom snippets and deep-scanning algorithms, this free online tool will scan any web page and automatically extract active theme information. Users just have to input a URL into the text field and click the What WordPress theme is that? button.
What WordPress Theme Is That is another free online tool that automatically detects what WordPress theme (and plugins) a site uses. As with the WP Theme Detector, a user just has to type a URL into the search bar and wait for the tool to retrieve the theme information.
You may prefer this tool because it supplies a few more details than WP Theme Detector, including the author, author homepage, and an image of the demo homepage, as shown below.
This free theme detector provides even more information about a site’s theme, including where you can find it and how much it costs. That means that you could find out what theme a site is using and have it implemented on your own site in minutes.
For example, if I click on Themeforest in the above search result for Jane’s Patisserie, then I’m automatically directed to the product page in Envato Market with an option to buy now.
If a site uses a highly-customized theme, has hidden its theme details, or was not built on WordPress, then the aforementioned tools will indicate an error message and you can move on to the next step.
2. Find a Site’s WordPress Theme Manually
If a theme detector tool is unable to scan a site, then that likely means the theme is using a unique name. But that’s not a problem — you can manually locate the details of a WordPress theme in the source code of the URL page.
A source code is a text file that contains instructions for a computer program. Each time you visit a website, your browser downloads the HTML, CSS, or programming language files that make up the site. Afterward, the website displays these files in the stylistic way you see on your screen every time you interact online, otherwise known as the User Interface.
But how do you sift through all of that text to find the WordPress theme of your brand dreams? Let us show you how to find WordPress themes within a page’s source code.
How to a Find WordPress Theme in the Source Code
Even if you’re not familiar with script languages like HTML or CSS, pulling up the source code screen is as simple as a right-click as pictured in the video above. So to find your new WordPress theme in the source code for your desired page, follow the instructions below for a step-by-step guide:
- Go to your favorite WordPress site.
For this example, we’ll check out one of my favorite food blogs, Just Homemade.
- Right-click on the screen, select View Page Source from the drop-down menu, and view the newly opened tab.
- Press Ctrl+F and type “style.css” into the search box.
- Scroll down until you find a line of text that looks something like this:
<link rel=”stylesheet” id=’themename_style-css’ rel=”noopener” target=”_blank” href=”http://example.com/wp-content/themes/theme-name/style.css?ver=1.1.47″ type=”text/css” media=”all” />
As shown in the screenshot below, the exact line in Just Homemade’s source code is:
<link rel=”stylesheet” id=’brunch-pro-theme-css’ rel=”noopener” target=”_blank” href=”https://www.justhomemade.net/wp-content/themes/brunch-pro/style.css” type=”text/css” media=”all” />
- Click on the URL in this line to open the style.css file.
At the top of the file, you should see the theme header block, which will display the theme name. It will look something like this:
Now that you see the theme name at the top of the header block, you can then search it in a new browser window to locate where it’s available for purchase. For example, I found the Brunch Pro theme used to build Just Homemade is available at Feast Design Co.
Knowing the different options for figuring out what theme a WordPress site is using can help you make an informed decision about what theme to build your site on. This is an essential step in achieving the look you want for your brand.
Use Your Favorite WordPress Themes From Any Site
Now that you know how to find WordPress themes that best fit your brand’s style and content organization, you can now start implementing a wide selection of both free and premium themes available. Remember to keep your target audience in mind when making your final decision and reflect on how your theme’s aesthetic will resonate as they navigate your website. As you build your WordPress site, continue to do so with the confidence that no stylistic goal is out of your brand’s reach when it comes to a good theme.
This post was originally published in December 2019 and has been updated for comprehensiveness in June 2022.