The age of technology has shifted the way most things work – including how authors get noticed by publishers and readers alike. Having an online presence is essential, even if you aren’t publishing your works online. But what if you aren’t a coder or tech-savvy?
That’s where WordPress Themes come in. A WordPress theme can give you the upper hand if you’re looking to manage a website that’s high quality and cost-effective. It’s an amazing platform because it offers versatility in terms of design, functionality & user-friendliness, plus it has fantastic SEO potential. And no, you don’t have to be a coder to get things right!
On top of that, since WordPress is open-source, you’ll gain a huge network of support and resources to build a stunning website. Forget dropping big dollars and high-commitment contracts with a design firm! Here are 13 of the best WordPress themes (and 2 Frameworks) well-suited for book authors and publishers that we have curated from our favorite internet marketplaces.
Disclosure – this website receives customer referral fees from companies and products mentioned on this website. All data & opinions are based on ShivarWeb staff’s independent research and professional judgement.
Activello is a classic, professional with some great premium features – but without the premium price! It has great customization ability, from little details like fonts and colors to big picture stuff like layouts and plugin compatibility. It’s a great start if you are thinking about incorporating eCommerce into your website since it’s built with WooCommerce in mind. Check out Activello here. It’s free!
Antonette is the perfect choice if you are looking to create a modern, creative website. The magazine design allows for a ton of customization – fonts, colors, header styles, layouts and more. Another great feature of this premium theme is that it’s completely integrated with JetPack and all your social media needs. Check out Antonette here.
You cannot go wrong with Author Pro – the creator of this premium WordPress theme is highly qualified, and you can tell by the design and functionality. If you’re looking for a solid long-term investment, Author Pro is for you. The sleek, minimalist look focuses on content, plus it’s nice to look at. It’s an incredibly powerful theme with great functionality – and all those little customizations you want to make are easy to do! Check out Author Pro here. It comes bundled with a strong framework too.
Big Cat is a fully responsive template that will make a perfect fit for any publishing company. A sleek modern layout allows you organizing a lot of content in a simple readable way. The template runs on Cherry Framework, providing you with powerful functionality and user-friendly admin dashboard. Sticky dropdown menu and back-to-top button facilitate navigation. You can make use of various gallery scripts and portfolio functionality. You also have a possibility to start a fully functional blog section. Audio and video integration will help you to diversify your content and make the presentation of your company even more creative and vivid. See more on Big Cat here.
BookGroup features an up-to-date design with a clear well-structured layout, trendy ghost buttons, original typography and stylish header slider. Grid-style presentation of your services makes them easy to skim. Pricing tables allow you t state your pricing policy clearly to the customer. The template is fully editable. Due to Power Page Builder and Live Customizer you can easily modify your website’s look. The template is licensed under GPL v3.0, meaning you can use the theme without any restrictions. And, of course, the template is fully responsive and retina ready. Check out BookGroup here.
Bookish has a unique, bold feel that will set you apart from all the others, and it’s responsive – so it will look good on any device. It has some pretty solid features, including enhanced sliders, comprehensive menu options and beautiful skins to choose from. Plus all the elements of the design are easy to customize. This premium theme is a great place to start if you want to include a store on your site. Check out Bookish here.
Author by Compete Themes is a simple, straightforward, well-coded WordPress theme for Authors. It’s responsive with a compelling but useful design. Check out Author here.
Divo is a relaxing, modern theme with great functionality. It’s responsive, so it’ll look great anywhere. It has a beautiful slider option that will impress readers and draw them in. All the design elements can be tweaked and customized to look just like you want. Essentially, Divo has all the basics that you need for a great website, and it’s flexible enough to add on anything else you need with a plugin. Check out Divo here.
If you love modern and minimal, Forte is your choice. It’s stunning – and since it’s a multipurpose theme, it will be as powerful and flexible as you need it to be. It comes with all the basic features, but what stands out is that it’s child-theme compatible (so you can keep your exact website through any and all updates). It’s visual composer makes all customizations incredibly easy and it’s compatible with all your major plugins, including WooCommerce). Forte is a fabulous choice if you’re going the premium route. Check out Forte here.
Though Greenstone was created as a blogging theme, it’s actually very impressive in terms of functionality. Not only can you customize all the design elements, but you can also choose from different post types and layout choices – which means you can create great landing pages for specific kinds of content. And the Grid/Masonry layout makes scrolling and reading a relaxing experience for your readers. Greenstone is another great premium theme that is built responsive, so it’ll look great anywhere. Check Greenstone out here.
Hemingway is a simple and clean design that will look great on any device. It may seem on the simple side, but it’s built with such great flexibility that you can really create anything you want! It does have a beautiful parallax scrolling effect that creates visual interest, plus all the design elements are easy to customize. Hemingway is a great starter theme – especially because it’s free! Check out Hemingway here.
Olsen Light has a bright and free-spirited feel to it’s design – and it’s flexibility allows so much room for creativity and customization! It’s got a custom menu and layout and all the design elements like fonts, colors and widgets are so easy to change to your preference. It’s also really easy to integrate with social media, so you can create a bigger following at the same time! Check out Olsen Light here – it’s a free download!
SimpleMag, also known as the “Magazine Theme for Creative Stuff,” is definitely a great choice for your website. It’s a nice combination between whimsical and professional. The grid layout encourages scrolling and interaction with your content, and it’s easy for you too! All the elemental design aspects have unlimited customization. With it’s responsive layout and functional build, SimpleMag can do pretty amazing things. It’s also easy to incorporate forums with this theme. Check out SimpleMag here.
The Novelist is a premium theme crafted with serious authors in mind – it zeros in on your content like no other theme on this list. It’s unique design feels like you are actually reading a book in a library. It’s easy to customize all the design elements like fonts, colors, and even backgrounds. This is a fabulous theme if you have a portfolio you want to display online. Check out The Novelist here.
Throne has a great readability rating, an eye-catching design, and loads of great features. Customization is a breeze – from fonts, colors and layouts to personal icons and branding. You can adjust the header to match your vision, plus social media outreach is already integrated into the theme. Check out Throne here.
If you lean toward the minimalist design, Workstation is the highest quality theme on this list. The design allows your readers to take a deep breath of fresh air, relax and comfortably read. It’s a responsive site, so it’ll look good anywhere – especially after you use all the customization options to match it to your preference. This theme is also great for building solid landing pages, and is compatible with all your major plugins. Workstation is totally worth the investment. Check Workstation out here.
A theme framework is a single theme with consistent, rich functionality that allows simple design changes across a range of themes. The Genesis is one of the oldest (and most cutting edge) theme frameworks in WordPress-land. Their theme has tons of well-documented features and “hooks” where you can implement infinite versatility for you or your clients.
StudioPress also has plenty of “plug and play” child themes for Genesis with several business-specific child themes that you can install out of the box. Check out Genesis by StudioPress here.
Like Genesis by StudioPress, Elegant Themes is a large, established themes maker with their own theme framework. They also have a deep theme “club” where you get unlimited access to themes to download, try and swap out at will. They are a great choice for a growing business that wants lots of choices. Check out Elegant Themes here.
Jumping on board with the WordPress team is a great way to gain publicity and traffic for your website, and its all completely controlled by you! Always be sure to use themes with high coding standards, and remember that a good theme is always flexible and works well with other plugins.
Good luck! Let me know if you have any suggestions in the comments!