How to Install & Activate Theme From WordPress Admin

Before You Start

This guide is for, the self hosted WordPress. And note changing your WordPress theme can affect your website looks and functions.

In this tutorial, I am going to show you how to install and activate a theme from the WordPress dashboard.

wordpress-theme-install-activate, install & activate wordpress theme


1: Login to your WordPress admin area. The default url to login to your admin area is something like this:


2: Once you are logged in, your WordPress dashboard will look similar to the below image.


3: From the WordPress dashboard, click on Appearance > Themes


4: From the themes section, you will see the list of themes installed on your website and the current theme active (being used). You can activate one of the themes installed on your website.

Click on Add New to begin the process of installing a new theme on your website


5: On the add new theme screen, there are two ways to install a theme. You can either install theme from the WordPress theme directory or by uploading.

add theme

How to Install & Activate WordPress Theme from the Input WordPress Themes Directory.

1 ) You can search for a theme you like using the input themes search . You can also see if you like any the themes listed under the featured, popular or latest section. There is also a search filter to help you streamline your search.

add theme search

2 ) After you have seen a theme you like, you can preview it before clicking on install.

Below screenshots is a search for the theme: Storefront



3 ) Once you clicked the install button,  the theme will begin installation from the WordPress theme directory into your admin area.

storefront-theme-installing, install & activate WordPress theme

4 ) After the installation is successful. You can now click the activate button. You can check your website front-end to see the new theme look on your website.

storefront-installed-activate, install & activate WordPress theme

How to Install & Activate WordPress Theme By Uploading

For some reason, if you are not able to search and install themes from the WordPress directory in your WordPress admin area or if you purchase a paid theme or you downloaded a theme directly from WordPress theme directory , You can install the theme using the upload theme button.

1 ) First of all, make sure you have downloaded your theme to your computer.

If you downloaded the theme from themes directory it will be saved as .zip file, a file ready to be uploaded from your WordPress admin

Similarly, if you purchase a paid theme, you will get access to download the theme. Make sure the theme you have is a .zip file.

Sometimes the actual theme zip file may be inside another zip file that contain themes files, usage guide etc. be sure to extract the main zip file first if that is the case.

Once your have your theme file ready,

2 ) From Step 5 above, click on the upload theme button.

Next, select the theme file from you computer you want to install.

add theme upload, install & activate WordPress theme

upload theme

3 ) Once the theme file is selected, click the install button to begin the installation process.

upload theme install, install & activate WordPress theme

4 ) Wait for the installation process to complete. Once completed, the theme will be installed successfully.

5 ) Next, click the activate link to use theme. You can check your website front-end to see the new theme look on your website.

upload theme activate, install & activate WordPress theme

That’s it. I Hope you find this guide useful.

Sometimes, everything cannot go smoothly as you planned. themes can fail to install for some reasons.

I will share in coming posts the reasons and also how to upload theme from file manager or ftp.

Please Feel free to write a comment below and share your experience with your WordPress Theme installation & activation.

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