This article was originally published on this site

Finding the fastest WordPress theme may seem like a lost cause. Are you supposed to test every theme you’re interested in and compare the differences in millisecond load times to find the most lightweight WordPress theme?

How do you account for changes in hosting speeds from the developers and their online demos? What if the testing tools produce conflicting results?
It’s unrealistic to think the average WordPress user will consistently test desired themes for performance. It’s tough to remove outside factors, and there are too many WordPress themes to consider.
That’s why we did the work for you.
Using four different speed tests, a new installation for each theme, and the same server for each theme’s speed testing, we were able to narrow down the fastest WordPress themes to a shortlist.
In addition, we compared the best of the best to show which of them perform well in different situations and which of them have the highest performance scores and fastest speeds.
Make sure to check out our guide on how to run speed tests if you’d like to run some tests on your own as well.
Interested in Woocommerce themes, instead? Check out our curated list of the fastest WooCommerce themes (based on testing).
Let’s get cracking!

How We Tested the Fastest WordPress Theme Candidates
Our search began with themes we’ve encountered in the past, along with the best WordPress themes based on popularity, high numbers of downloads, and quality reviews.
We added to our list of candidates from the WordPress Repository to identify hidden gems, newer themes, and highly-rated options that we may have missed from the previous collection.
If you come across a fast WordPress site, you can find out what theme it uses with our theme detector tool. If the theme is not in our list below, be sure to let us know about it in the comments!
The speed testing process went like this:

  1. Install and activate the theme on a blank WordPress sandbox installation. This allows for standardization in WordPress hosting and no complications with other plugins or site files.
  2. Leave the theme as-is, with no added media, menus, pages, or posts. We also want to leave out any demo content and not assign a homepage for a level starting point.
  3. Run the website with the theme through the GTmetrix Speed Test.
  4. Run the theme through the Pingdom Speed Test.
  5. Run the theme through the PageSpeed Insights Test to evaluate mobile and desktop speed.
  6. Run the theme through the Byte Check TTFB Test (we have a complete guide on how to reduce TTFB (Time to First Byte) if you’d like to dig deeper into the topic).

Info
All the theme tests were done in February 2022.

Each testing tool has its benefits. We’ve outlined what our metrics mean and why they’re essential to understanding the evaluation better.
As for why we used four tools, each of them has varying standards and results, so we want to ensure one tool isn’t giving better or worse results than another. In addition, a few of the tools focus on specifics like mobile speed, page size, or the speed at which the first website element appears.
Here’s a summary of the testing tools we used.
Speed optimization is a tough game you can’t win with a slow theme. Check out how the fastest WordPress themes stack against each other! 📊🥇Click to Tweet
GTmetrix
GTmetrix takes a website and breaks down its speed and optimization. It’s an excellent tool for checking on performance issues and if a theme is way too cluttered with unnecessary files.
Since November 2020, GTmetrix is powered by Lighthouse and has a new report design. The new design includes an updated GTmetrix Grade based on the new Performance and Structure scores.
A screenshot of the new GTmetrix report.GTmetrix.

  • GTmetrix Grade: It’s a weighted grade of both the Performance and Structure scores. The grade considers both the site’s raw performance and actual performance experienced by users.
  • Performance Score: The Lighthouse Performance score captured by GTmetrix during their tests. Higher is better.
  • Structure Score: It’s based on both Lighthouse audits and GTmetrix’s own custom audits. In ideal situations, it’s almost the same as the Performance Score.
  • Web Vitals: They’re metrics established by Google as key to users’ perception of performance. These key metrics include Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), Total Blocking Time (TBT), and Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS).

Pingdom
Pingdom is similar to GTmetrix, but we like to run both side-by-side since they offer slightly different metrics and can serve as a “check-and-balances” situation if any significant discrepancies happen between the two.
Screenshot of the Pingdom Website Speed Test page.Pingdom.

  • Performance Grade: This is a cumulative grade out of 100. The goal is to get as high of a score as possible. Some elements that contribute to the score include content size, errors, redirects, requests, and more.
  • Load Time: The amount of time it takes Pingdom to load the entire website with a theme installed. Lower is better.
  • Page Size: The size of your total site files. The theme affects this drastically. Lower is better.
  • Requests: The number of server requests to deliver your theme and site content to the user. Fewer is ideal.

PageSpeed Insights
Google PageSpeed Insights excels with displaying how user experience is the most critical part of having a fast WordPress theme. It focuses on how quickly content is shown to the user, while also revealing the aspects of the theme that make for slow delivery times.
We use both mobile and desktop tests for our measurements as it gives a better overall picture.
Here are the primary data points to know about:
A screenshot of the PageSpeed Insights Mobile test.PageSpeed Insights.

  • Performance Score: This score is out of 100. The performance scoring is detailed here, with speed index, time to deliver content, and idle timing.
  • First Contentful Paint: The amount of time taken for your theme and website to show the first content item. Lower is better.
  • Largest Contentful Paint: The amount of time taken for your theme and website to show the largest content item. Lower is better.
  • Speed Index: How much time elapses for every content item to appear to the user. Again, lower is ideal.
  • Time to Interactive: Interactivity is different than visibility. Essentially, it means that a button might be visible, but the user may not be able to click it yet. So, this timing should be longer than the Speed Index, but we still want a lower number.
  • Total Blocking Time: The time spent waiting for a download to start, typically because other assets such as stylesheets and scripts have a higher priority.
  • Cumulative Layout Shift: Measures the page’s visual stability. Does the page content move or jump unexpectedly, especially during the initial load? A CLS score of <0.1 is considered good, while >0.25 is deemed poor.

Byte Check
A TTFB test (Time to First Byte test) measures how long the browser takes to complete an HTTP request and ends up with one byte of data being sent to the user from the server.
Essentially, it’s saying how long it takes for the tiniest bit of information to be delivered. Hosting plays a prominent role in delivering the first byte, so choosing the fastest WordPress hosting solution is essential, but a clunky theme causes problems too.
Here’s what we look at during our testing using bytecheck.com:
A screenshot of Byte Check's TTFB test results.Byte Check.

  • Time To First Byte: The TTFB is ideally a very short period (in milliseconds). It reflects how long it takes the first byte of data to go from the server to the user.
  • Total Time: The total time could incorporate other factors, but we found that it’s always the same in our testing. We figure hosting changes would modify this number.
  • Request Size: Ideally low, the request size is the size of data sent through the HTTP request. Our testing revealed the same request size across all themes.
  • Total Header Size: This is important because, in some cases, the header file sizes often weigh down a theme. Measured in bytes, it’s the total file size of your theme/website header. Our testing revealed the same header size across all themes.

Now that the testing method and tools are clear, it’s time to look at our results and find the fastest WordPress theme (backed by data).
Note: The themes are listed in no particular order. Read their individual test results and conclusions to understand how they perform. You can also skip to the final section to view a compiled table of all the results.
1. Hello Elementor
If you’re familiar with the Elementor Page Builder, you know how fast and easy it can be to build a WordPress site without using any code. Elementor is a top pick in the world of drag-and-drop page builders, so it’s no surprise that the same developers have produced a theme that’s fast and versatile, called Hello Elementor.
Hello Elementor's homepage.Hello Elementor.
The theme is marketed as fast and flexible. As you may assume, it combines nicely with Elementor and many other plugins like WooCommerce, Advanced Custom Fields, Yoast, and more.
The mobile design performs well in testing and provides a smooth interface, so your visitors aren’t confused with a glitchy menu or text. The theme starts you off with a relatively blank slate, but the power of Elementor comes into play for designing what you need for any industry.
Pricing
The Hello Elementor theme is available as a free download.
The Elementor Page Builder is free, with paid plans (starting at $49 per year) for additional templates, widgets, and element builders.
Notable Features

  • The Hello Elementor theme integrates with Elementor, one of the most uncomplicated page builders out there.
  • The base design and theme files are minimalistic and straightforward, allowing breakneck speeds and an overall clean interface.
  • With the Elementor integration, you can make any website with the theme and page builder.
  • Some of the page builder elements that come with Hello Elementor include video, headings, spacers, Google Maps, portfolios, posts, and many more.
  • Hello Elementor has built-in tools for rapidly designing landing pages.
  • The theme integrates with popular plugins like WooCommerce, Yoast, and WPML.
  • You receive a beautiful responsive design for all devices.
  • Create multilingual and translated sites with help from RTL support.
  • Hello Elementor has a strong following and solid support resources, making it easy for you to reach out for help and find articles online.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
When it comes to page speeds and lightweight files, Hello Elementor is a WordPress theme to look at. The scores reflect that.
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 96%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 727ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 897ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 92
  • Page Size: 127.40 KB
  • Load Time: 771ms
  • Requests: 14

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 93
  • First Contentful Paint: 2.5s
  • Speed Index: 2.7s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 2.6s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 2.5s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 50ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 99
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.7s
  • Speed Index: 0.7s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.8s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.7s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 59ms
  • Total Time: 59ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Hello Elementor’s GTmetrix Performance Score is phenomenal. Its Pingdom grade is a bit less than ideal. It used to score highly in Google’s PageSpeed Insights before, but those lightning-fast loading times have become a tad slower now. Its TTFB test is well within the range of its competitors.
Finally, we’re only seeing 12 requests from Pingdom. That’ll change when you add content to a site, but it’s a great place to start. We love seeing less communication between the server and the user.
2. Neve
The ThemeIsle company is known for creating speedy and flexible themes and plugins, many of which are free with premium upgrades. During our tests, the Neve theme stood out as the fastest from ThemeIsle, with its multipurpose design and easily customizable layout.
We also like Neve since it’s made to work well with WooCommerce, the most popular online store plugin for WordPress. It’s reassuring to see a few ecommerce-focused themes with lightweight files and top-notch performance scores.
Neve's homepage.Neve.
Neve works with Elementor and many other top page builders. It’s a lightweight and mobile-first WordPress theme. Reliable updates and support are also mainstays from the ThemeIsle brand.
You’ll also find reliable coding and a flexible structure to ensure that you can build any site you want. It’s also nice to see that ThemeIsle lists sites currently running the Neve theme, allowing you to understand the possibilities of the theme and get inspiration for your own website.
Pricing
The Neve theme is a free download, with premium versions starting at $49.
The paid theme provides extra features like a header and blog boost, custom layouts, and unlimited support and updates for the sites with the theme.
Notable Features

  • The Neve theme focuses on mobile interfaces for faster loading and more robust experiences on phones and tablets.
  • Integrate with popular page builders.
  • The theme is compatible with AMP for generating a user-first interface.
  • Testing and file size show a fast, lightweight WordPress theme.
  • Custom designing is provided in the header and footer areas.
  • You can adjust your site layout with settings for full-width and contained versions.
  • Neve has a library of custom-made demos to launch a beautiful website within minutes. The categories include ecommerce, minimal, blog, entertainment, travel, and more.
  • Some of the demos are made just for certain page builders.
  • The WooCommerce Booster tool implements additional ecommerce elements like advanced galleries, checkout modules, and billing details.
  • The Blog Booster feature expands your blogging options with thumbnails, layouts, and metadata elements.
  • The Header Booster is great for adding social buttons, contact information, and breadcrumbs.
  • You can generate custom layouts and incorporate white labeling if running an agency.
  • The premium version of the theme provides Elementor Page Builder upgrades, blog boosters, and “scroll to top” features, among many other upgrades.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Neve is another golden theme to keep your eye on if you’re trying to improve your mobile speeds. The requests are low, and its file sizes look desirable as well.
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 99%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 487ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 1000ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 98
  • Page Size: 43.20 KB
  • Load Time: 586ms
  • Requests: 6

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.0s
  • Speed Index: 1.2s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.0s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.0s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.3s
  • Speed Index: 0.6s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.4s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.3s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 51ms
  • Total Time: 52ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Neve is a super performance-optimized, lightweight WordPress theme that outshines almost all competitors. It delivered a 100 score in the PageSpeed Insights test (both mobile and desktop). Plus, it also produced a high 98 Pingdom grade. At just 6, its number of requests is the lowest of all the themes tested, and its page size is the second-lowest. Its loading times are also best in its class.
Ultimately, Neve is not only popular and well-designed but also versatile with a massive bonus of running at blazing fast speeds.
3. Astra
The Astra theme is not only growing in popularity at a rapid rate, but the theme moves quickly when activated and performed well during our tests. The whole point of Astra is to have a premade site all ready to go once you install it on WordPress.
That’s done with demos for multiple industries, and you can customize most elements of the theme without having to touch the code.

Astra's homepage.Astra.

Page builders integrate with the theme, and you can link the theme with third-party plugins like WooCommerce, LearnDash, and Yoast. Along with hooks and filters, translation settings, and demos, the Astra theme is a must-try if you’re interested in a speedy setup.
Pricing
There’s a free theme and a premium version. Astra Pro is listed at $59. The Agency Bundle is $523 per year, but we often see discounts from the company.
Notable Features

  • There are beautiful prebuilt demos for designs in outdoor adventure, pet care, organic stores, custom printing companies, and more.
  • The theme integrates with high-end page builders like Gutenberg, Brizy, Elementor, and Beaver Builder. In fact, some of the demos are made just for those builders.
  • The layout settings include adjusting your headers, adding sidebars, and adjusting single-page layouts.
  • Control the entire design of your blog through the customizer.
  • The theme has unique settings for WooCommerce that you wouldn’t find from regular themes.
  • The hooks and filters are ideal for extending functionality.
  • You can translate the theme into various languages.
  • The theme has a mega menu and mobile header features.
  • The premium site layouts include options for padded, full-width, and boxed pages.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Can a multipurpose theme with many demos provide top-notch speeds? You bet it can.
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 98%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 649ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 857 ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 98
  • Page Size: 51.10 KB
  • Load Time: 531ms
  • Requests: 6

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.1s
  • Speed Index: 1.5s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.2s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.1s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.3s
  • Speed Index: 0.4s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.3s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.3s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 47ms
  • Total Time: 48ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
In terms of scores from all four tests, Astra is a high-performer. The scores are 100, 98, 100, and 100 — close to perfect in every area!
The requests are at 6, and the page size is relatively small, meaning there’s no junk weighing the theme down right out of the box. Overall, Astra performs well even when implementing its larger demo items, which is great since they all look beautiful.
4. GeneratePress
From all four tests, GeneratePress was one of the fastest WordPress themes. It’s a versatile theme in a sleek little package, boasting integrations with multiple page builders, WooCommerce support, and various sidebar and widget locations.
GeneratePress homepage.GeneratePress.
The ratings and reviews show that GeneratePress has an incredible following. You can download a free version or opt to upgrade your features to the premium version.
The premium theme comes with extra modules for typography, demos, colors, and more. We particularly like how small the original theme file size is, along with the demo files. This indicates that it will not weigh down your site or cause problems on a server.
Pricing
There’s a free version to download. The premium theme sells for $59. Upgrades are yearly if you want continued support and updates. There is also a one-off lifetime payment available.
Notable Features

  • According to our testing, the theme has fast speeds and small file sizes.
  • It’s compatible with many WordPress plugins like WooCommerce, page builders, and bbPress.
  • It has a wide range of theme colors and typography options for customization.
  • Hooks and filters are available for extending the functionality of your site.
  • The theme is translation-ready for over 20 languages.
  • Make an advanced site menu with the help of mobile headers, sticky navigation, and more.
  • Blogging features are more advanced than other themes, as it uses infinite scrolling, column controls, and image adjustment settings.
  • You can add backgrounds to several parts of your theme.
  • Import and export all theme options with the click of a button.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
During testing, GeneratePress performed well across the board. It’s awe-inspiring how fast the pages load.
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 99%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 546ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 688ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 98
  • Page Size: 38.80 KB
  • Load Time: 559ms
  • Requests: 6

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.0s
  • Speed Index: 1.3s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.2s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.0s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.3s
  • Speed Index: 0.4s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.4s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.3s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 54
  • Total Time: 54
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
The minimal file size shows its strength in the testing for GeneratePress. The theme has close to perfect scores all across the board. Its requests are the lowest as well.
This success in speed carries over to the PageSpeed Insights test, as we can see another almost perfect score and rapid loading times. Its TTFB test also performs exceptionally well compared to the competition.
Need more details to choose one between Astra and GenertePress? Make sure to check out our GeneratePress vs Astra in-depth comparison.
5. OceanWP
The OceanWP theme has a professional look for small businesses and agencies by default. It also includes creative demos for companies and industries like fitness clubs, shoe stores, and chocolate companies. You can browse through the dozens of themes on the website to see which ones are best for you before opting for this theme.
OceanWP homepage.OceanWP.
Though a fast theme, OceanWP didn’t hold up that well in our speed tests, as we’ll outline below. However, the theme performance remains solid when you implement the demos.
Quite a few extensions are available for OceanWP, adding to its extendability. For instance, you can add a sticky header and an Instagram feed. The Woo Popup is a nice touch, and the white labeling is also offered as a premium extension.
Pricing
OceanWP has a free version for everyone to download.
The premium version is mainly a bundle of extensions with additional sites and ongoing support. That starts at $43 per year and goes up to $127 per year for agencies.
Notable Features

  • You get to pick from a long list of unique and beautiful demos to design your site. Some of them include studio, outfit, and event demos.
  • It’s a fully responsive theme that looks good on smaller devices and performs well. Many themes claim this but don’t deliver.
  • Translation tools are built into the theme.
  • The OceanWP theme supports WooCommerce, turning your site into an online store.
  • A few WooCommerce features with OceanWP include a native cart popup, a floating cart bar, and a quick view.
  • The theme plays nice with popular page builders like King Composer, Elementor, and Beaver Builder.
  • You can choose from many extensions like the popup notice, Instagram integration, and full-screen scrolling tool.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Starting out, it appears that OceanWP is a tad slower than others, but that still doesn’t mean you should overlook it. The main area to be concerned about is mobile speed. But again, the speeds are good, but it looks a little slower when compared to the best.
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 99%
  • Structure Score: 95%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 782ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 990ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 91
  • Page Size: 303.60 KB
  • Load Time: 749ms
  • Requests: 19

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 88
  • First Contentful Paint: 3.0s
  • Speed Index: 3.2s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 3.0s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 3.1s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 70ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.001

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 97
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.9s
  • Speed Index: 1.0s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.0s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.9s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 59ms
  • Total Time: 59ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
OceanWP has a great GTmetrix performance score, but its Pingdom and PageSpeed Insight scores are lower than the competition. However, scores of 91, 88, 97 are still better than the vast majority of themes on the market, making it one of the fastest WordPress theme options.
The TTFB test is respectable.
With OceanWP, you may see slightly slower loading times on mobile devices. Hopefully, that improves in the future to make it a top-notch theme for speed on all devices.
6. Zakra
The Zakra theme is from the folks at ThemeGrill and provides a multipurpose solution with endless possibilities and a speedy interface. The theme is a fast and secure option with over 40 demos to create a unique look for your website.
Our tests confirmed that the speed claim is, in fact, true, as it produced speeds in line with the top performers in the business.
Zakra homepage.Zakra.
Zakra comes as a free theme with powerful features, but the true customization prowess is available in the premium version, with advanced headers, WooCommerce tools, and blogging options.
One of the things we like the most about Zakra is how well-documented and supported the theme is compared to many free themes online. There are tutorials to answer critical questions, and a customer support rep is available if you can’t find something.
Pricing
The free version is, of course, free.
The premium theme sells for $69 per year, with higher pricing to support installation on more sites. You can also opt for a monthly plan.
Notable Features

  • The core theme offers a fast and reliable build to generate sleek sites for small businesses.
  • Choose from a library of demos focusing on dentists to wedding themes.
  • The theme is compatible with Gutenberg and a few other page builders.
  • It’s SEO-friendly and great-looking on mobile devices.
  • The header module is versatile and creative because of the multiple top header bars, transparent header options, and several buttons.
  • You can edit the entire menu without sticking with the standard WordPress menu settings. This includes mobile menus, dropdown menus, and primary menu customizations.
  • Adjust the style of your blog with help from masonry layouts and grid designs.
  • Make multiple footer layouts with more columns and options for full-width footers or buttons to scroll to the top of the page.
  • The theme is packaged with hundreds of typography options.
  • Sidebars are highly flexible.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
We like the design and speed coming from Zakra. Especially when it comes to the mobile speeds and the lowers request counts.
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 98%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 523ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 661ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 96
  • Page Size: 58.90 KB
  • Load Time: 519ms
  • Requests: 10

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 99
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.5s
  • Speed Index: 1.8s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.6s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.5s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.5s
  • Speed Index: 0.7s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.5s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.5s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 60ms
  • Total Time: 60ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Zakra tests revealed solid scores across the board, with the GTmetrix performance score and fully loaded time being a notable success. It takes less than 2 seconds for the first theme item to show up and become interactive. Overall, it sits in the middle of the pack in this article.
7. Customify
The Customify theme is another of the fastest WordPress theme options to consider, mainly because our speed tests rendered excellent results, but also since the theme has settings for changing every part of your website.
The fast performance is credited to the optimization and lightweight nature of the theme files. At the same time, the customization aspects are completed with header and footer builders, demo imports, and integrations with page builders.
Customify homepage.Customify.
The PressMaximum developers provide a website for a free theme download, complemented by a collection of website demos for importing. The categories include options for portfolios, ecommerce, small business, and nonprofit sites.
You’ll also find demos made primarily for Beaver Builder and Elementor, two of the most popular page builders on the market. Customer support and documentation are of high quality on the PressMaximum website, and you’re able to upgrade to the theme’s Pro Version to gain access to a myriad of advanced features.
The Pro features include transparent headers, different blogging layouts, and custom fonts.
Pricing
The core version is available for free.
The Pro Upgrade starts at $59 per year for a full year of updates and support. The Business Bundle is for three sites at $89 per year, and the Agency Bundle supports unlimited sites for $129 per year.
What’s more, is that renewal discounts are typically provided every year.
Notable Features

  • The Customify theme is a multipurpose theme with the flexibility to design just about any type of website.
  • It integrates with top page builders like Beaver Builder and Elementor, minimizing the need to mess with code.
  • The theme integrates with many must-have plugins like OrbitFox, Yoast, BuddyPress, and bbPress.
  • The WooCommerce integration is smooth, with additional elements that enhance any ecommerce store.
  • You receive footer and header builders without many limitations.
  • The speed and lightweight nature of the theme improve its SEO right out of the box.
  • You receive custom menus, flexible headers, and multiple columns to adjust.
  • You’re able to import demos within the dashboard. These demos cover industries, from online apparel stores to lawyer websites.
  • A unique header is provided for mobile devices.
  • You can make edits to the mobile version of the site, without adjusting items on the desktop version.
  • The theme has unlimited typography settings and unique layouts for pages and posts.
  • A sticky header feature is offered in the Pro Version.
  • There are multiple add-on features for having multiple headers, mega menus, and advanced styling.
  • The infinity scroll and scroll-to-top functionality add to its ease of use.
  • This is a developer-friendly theme, allowing for advanced hooks and code customizations.
  • A few advanced builders and “boosters” come with the Pro Version, including a WooCommerce Booster, a WC Product Gallery, Slider add-ons, and a canvas filter for ecommerce stores.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Customify is tough to beat as well. You’ll see that the sub-2-second loading times are somewhat consistent for this theme.
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 98%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 617ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 97
  • Page Size: 145.90 KB
  • Load Time: 974ms
  • Requests: 8

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 98
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.6s
  • Speed Index: 2.0s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.6s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.6s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 100ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.001

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.5s
  • Speed Index: 0.7s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.5s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.5s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 52ms
  • Total Time: 52ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Here’s another powerhouse theme with high scores. However, at 100ms, it had the worst Total Blocking Time of all the themes tested. It’s nice to see the requests in line with the other fast WordPress theme options, and the page sizing isn’t that much of a worry.
8. Twenty Twenty
Twenty Twenty is the default WordPress theme installed with every WordPress build. This theme gets a new release every year, technically making them different since you can still install Twenty Nineteen and other past theme versions.

Sign Up For the Newsletter

Want to know how we increased our traffic over 1000%?
Join 20,000+ others who get our weekly newsletter with insider WordPress tips!


Subscribe Now

This  WordPress default theme is made from an existing theme from the WordPress community, and it focuses on integrating well with the Gutenberg builder. The default WordPress theme (regardless of the year) is consistently one of the fastest WordPress theme options because of its slim file structure, solid code, and the fact that it’s expected to be the best of the best.
A screenshot of Twenty Twenty theme's responsive layouts.Twenty Twenty.
The Twenty Twenty WordPress theme came out strong in speed testing as expected. The theme is known for its flexibility with page builders and endless layouts, especially for blogging.
It’s a popular option for those trying to build personal or professional blogs, with increasingly more advanced typography options, formatting settings, and background colors.
Pair that with a page builder like Gutenberg or Elementor, and know for a fact that your theme isn’t causing any problems when it comes to speed.
Pricing
All past, current, and future default WordPress themes, including Twenty Twenty, are entirely free to use.
Notable Features

  • Twenty Twenty boasts consistent speed scores that get close to 100s every year. The file sizes and requests are also on the extremely low side.
  • The theme is made for the most current version of WordPress, so it’s often touted as perfectly integrated with WordPress, cutting out speed and conflict issues you may find with third-party themes.
  • Twenty Twenty is based on Chaplin, a theme with high flexibility and support for extreme customization.
  • You receive unique tools like editor styles, fonts, colors, and infinite scrolling.
  • Gutenberg’s block editor support is primarily there, but it’s also possible to integrate with page builders like Elementor and Beaver Builder.
  • The theme is ready for mobile devices, with stunning attributes and highly user-friendly elements that adapt to every device size.
  • You’re able to make landing pages rather quickly with the theme.
  • It provides access to a wide range of typography options.
  • The blogging interface and customization tools are top-notch, with layouts, sidebars, typography adjustments, and more options.
  • The content editor provides a live look at what changes are made before publication.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Is Twenty Twenty the fastest theme in the world? No, but it’s close. It’s nice to see that one of the default WordPress themes isn’t just for show.
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 97%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 651ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 1000ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 97
  • Page Size: 66 KB
  • Load Time: 323ms
  • Requests: 7

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.1s
  • Speed Index: 1.4s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.3s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.1s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.003

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.4s
  • Speed Index: 0.5s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.5s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.5s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.001

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 78ms
  • Total Time: 78ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Although the Twenty Twenty theme isn’t the first choice for many developers, because of its reputation as the “stock WordPress theme,” we still like to see that the Automattic developers are keeping around — and improving upon — this gem for the users who want free themes.
100, 97, 100, and 100 looks like a winning combination of scores, and the page size is even more impressive. Surprisingly, it scored the worst loading time in GTmetrix, but the best loading time in Pingdom.
The TTFB test appears a bit higher than what we expected, but it’s nothing to stress about. That makes Twenty Twenty a solid starter WordPress theme.
9. Responsive
The Responsive theme clocks in with blazing fast speeds. It’s also a worthy theme for building a website for any industry. The blogging functionality stands out, and its over 40 demo site files are there for you to install full website features, including travel sites, small business showcases, and portfolios.
Responsive homepage.Responsive.
These demos are for Gutenberg and Elementor, both of which run well on mobile devices and feature clean code and low-profile files that don’t conflict with plugins.
Pricing
The core Responsive theme is entirely free of charge, even for most demos.
There is, however, a Pro Version. They sell their Personal plan for $47 per year on one website. The Business Plan is listed at $67 per year, and the Pro version is $97 per year. A few extra features include auto-updates, interactive carousels, video tutorials, pricing tables, and portfolio widgets.
Notable Features

  • The speed test produces consistently high scores, with SEO elements built into the theme to complement the speeds.
  • It’s a responsive theme that looks nice on all devices.
  • You can integrate with popular page builders. A few of the demos are made for Elementor and Gutenberg, but they also work with Visual Composer, Brizi, Divi, and more.
  • Integrate with top plugins like WooCommerce and WPML.
  • Create a community website with sleek integrations with BuddyPress and bbPress.
  • The theme is fully customizable, with buttons, colors, and layouts to match your brand.
  • The theme highlights custom typography opportunities, with styling options, system fonts, and Google Fonts.
  • Quite a few WooCommerce options are built into the theme, such as custom layouts, colors, and quick views for product images.
  • The Pro Version grants you unlimited color options, header/footer layouts, and extended tools for WooCommerce.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Responsive has surprisingly fast page load times. The mobile results are interesting, considering the name of the theme.
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 96%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 560ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 865ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 95
  • Page Size: 132.40 KB
  • Load Time: 629ms
  • Requests: 11

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 98
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.9s
  • Speed Index: 2.4s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 2.0s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.9s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 10ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.001

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 99
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.6s
  • Speed Index: 0.8s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.7s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.6s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 53ms
  • Total Time: 53ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Though not the best, it’s good to see that a theme called Responsive performs well in the PageSpeed Insights Mobile test. The loading times aren’t bad for the theme on a mobile device, and they improve further on a desktop.
There’s nothing to cringe about for any of these scores, seeing as how the requests are low, the loading time is fast, and the page size isn’t insufficient at all.
10. Sydney
The Sydney theme, from aThemes, is meant for small businesses and freelancers who need fast and minimalistic designs. The theme is compatible with Elementor, offers complete layout control, and performs well in our speed tests.
Sydney is a true blessing for small business owners who need to keep website costs low but fear ending up with a junky product. Sydney saves those business owners by offering a simplistic site building process and a wide range of settings to extend its already powerful layouts.
Sydney homepage.Sydney.
Sydney is a responsive theme that looks good on smaller devices. It also allows blog and front page customizations with quick setting changes in the Theme Customizer.
We like the Google Font access, along with the custom Elementor blocks. The list goes on: parallax backgrounds, slider image headers, and social buttons. Sydney is more of a premium theme given away for free. It’s excellent since you pretty much receive premium features for free, but there’s more to look forward to in the Pro Version.
Pricing
Offered as a free theme download, Sydney also provides a Pro Version for $69.
The Pro theme includes extra page templates, your choice of a header, and many other features to expand upon your site-building process. It’s also worth mentioning that the Pro version gets you continued support and theme updates.
Notable Features

  • The theme performs well in speed tests, with its small file sizing and SEO and mobile-centric approach.
  • The theme is translation-ready for adjusting to different languages. The Live Customizer is excellent for seeing changes live and previewing them before publication.
  • Several social media buttons allow for linking to your social accounts.
  • The theme includes a setting for adding a parallax background, a simple way to add a visual effect to images without slowing down your site with something clunkier.
  • Quite a few custom Elementor blocks come with the Sydney theme.
  • The theme options maximize your customization opportunities, with color, fonts, and blog layout settings.
  • The aThemes customer support team is highly regarded, and the online documentation is top-notch.
  • You get different page templates and Elementor blocks when upgrading to the Pro Version. For instance, premium Elementor blocks include timelines, pricing tables, and new employee sections.
  • Some of the WooCommerce features are unique to the Sydney theme. For instance, the theme provides checkout modules and product preview tools.
  • You can add a video to your website header with the click of a button.
  • The footer contact form is also unique to Sydney, allowing you to collect information from potential clients or customers.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Sydney isn’t the top performer on this list, but it still deserves to be mentioned for its high grades, lower request counts, and tiny file sizes.
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 98%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 502ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 655ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 97
  • Page Size: 63.90 KB
  • Load Time: 660ms
  • Requests: 7

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 99
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.6s
  • Speed Index: 2.1s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.6s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.6s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 70ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.4s
  • Speed Index: 0.7s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.5s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.4s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 52ms
  • Total Time: 52ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Sydney scored decently across the board, putting it on here as one of the fastest WordPress theme options. Its PageSpeed score is up there with the top performers, and the 100% GTmetrix performance score is nothing to scoff about.

The total page size is also low, and the requests are the second-lowest.
Overall, Sydney is a solid theme with many uses. It’s simply a bonus that you receive a neatly organized file system inside the theme for fast speeds.
11. Blank Canvas
Blank Canvas is a free, minimalist theme for single-page websites. It’s a child theme of Seedlet, another free theme by Automattic.
Blank Canvas theme's download page.Blank Canvas.
Its post and page layouts are entirely blank by default — no header, navigation menus, or widgets. The page you design in the WordPress editor is the same you’ll see on the frontend. As such, it doesn’t include any demos.
Pricing
Blank Canvas is a free theme from Automattic. You can use it for both personal and professional websites without any license.
Notable Features

  • As the name suggests, Blank Canvas is literally a blank canvas, ready for all your customization needs.
  • Doesn’t have any extra fluff by default, not even a header, navigation menu, footer, or other widgets.
  • If you’re planning to make your theme from scratch, starting with Blank Canvas will help immensely.
  • The default styles rely on simple sans-serif fonts and subtle blue highlights.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Blank Canvas performed exceptionally well in all our speed tests. Let’s see how it holds up!
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 94%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 405ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 516ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 92
  • Page Size: 58.30 KB
  • Load Time: 541ms
  • Requests: 10

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 99
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.6s
  • Speed Index: 1.9s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.8s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.6s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.5s
  • Speed Index: 0.7s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.6s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.5s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 67ms
  • Total Time: 67ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Blank Canvas performed superbly in the GTmetrix test, acing almost all the metrics. However, its Structure Score was the lowest of the lot. Its Pingdom grade was 90+, but still lower than the competition. Likewise, its other scores were excellent, but nothing much to discuss.

12. Go
Go by GoDaddy touts itself as “an innovative, Gutenberg-first WordPress theme,” and it is in many ways. Its primary focus is helping users to build simple business websites with the help of Gutenberg blocks.
Go theme's download page.Go.
The real power of Go is the blocks-based CoBlocks page builder plugin, which it uses to help you create websites one block at a time. As of writing this post, it offers 37 blocks for various uses, such as Author Profiles, Masonry Gallery, Services, Pricing Tables, Map, Social Sharing, Events, FAQs, and much more.
You can also choose one of its various demos to instantly set up your base site.
Pricing
Offered as a free theme download, Go is completely free to use.
Notable Features

  • Go theme is ideal for those who want to use the WordPress block editor as a page builder.
  • The theme comes with ample customizer options to provide additional flexibility.
  • Go serves as a showcase for its companion CoBlocks page builder plugin, which serves as a middle ground between WordPress’ block editor and other fully featured page builders.
  • The theme uses minimal JavaScript and PHP code, relying heavily on HTML and CSS.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Can Go serve as your go-to strategy for a fast WordPress site? It’s time to find out!
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 99%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 546ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 712ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 94
  • Page Size: 139.40 KB
  • Load Time: 520ms
  • Requests: 12

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 94
  • First Contentful Paint: 2.4s
  • Speed Index: 2.4s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 2.5s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 2.4s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.003

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 99
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.7s
  • Speed Index: 0.8s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.7s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 65ms
  • Total Time: 65ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Go produced a great GTmetrix performance score. However, its Pingdom performance grade and PageSpeed Insights Mobile score are towards the lower end of the competition. The theme’s TTFB is also the second-worst, but still under 70ms. Hence, it earns a spot here on our tests.
13. Hestia
From the makers of Neve, Hestia is another unique theme from Themeisle. It’s a modern one-page theme that aims to help you set up a site for any business.
Hestia WordPress theme's homepage.Hestia.
Hestia is built for performance and user experience from the get-go. It also supports WooCommerce, so you can get your online store up and running quickly and effortlessly.
Pricing
Hestia is a premium theme, but you can visit their site to take a test drive of the theme.
Its Personal license goes for $80/year, while its Business license costs $150/year (usually discounted). If you plan to use it on multiple websites, you can also opt for its Agency plan costing $347/year.
The Business plan includes Starter Sites and priority support. Hestia’s Agency plan consists of all of the above and adds White Label and Live Chat support.
Notable Features

  • Hestia is Translation & RTL Ready so that you can build a website in multiple languages. Every element in this theme can be translated with plugins (Weglot plugin is officially supported). You can also use any RTL language.
  • The theme is SEO friendly as it comes with an SEO-ready structure and clean, optimized code. This means that Google will love your site.
  • You can use its Live Customizer to fine-tune your website’s looks and see the changes instantly.
  • Hestia includes video tutorials to guide you through the process of building your WordPress website.
  • The theme supports almost all major page builders, including Gutenberg, the new WordPress editor.
  • Hestia includes a responsive, user-friendly mega menu. Using it, you can easily arrange and organize your submenu content. Plus, you’ll have complete control over your menu’s design and structure.
  • Being a premium theme, it comes with helpful features such as 1-Click updates and support.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Can Hestia stand up to its sibling Neve? Let’s check its stats!
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 95%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 665ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.01
  • Fully Loaded Time: 883ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 92
  • Page Size: 218.30 KB
  • Load Time: 564ms
  • Requests: 18

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 88
  • First Contentful Paint: 3.0s
  • Speed Index: 3.0s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 3.0s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 3.0s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.007

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 99
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.8s
  • Speed Index: 0.8s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.9s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.8s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.011

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 54ms
  • Total Time: 54ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Hestia scored a perfect 100% GTmetrix performance score. However, its Pingdom grade of 92 is a tad lower than the competition. Even its requests are on the higher side. Its PageSpeed Insights Mobile test is nothing to talk much about either.
Compared to Neve, one of the fastest themes we tested, Hestia is nowhere close to it. Nevertheless, it is still a knockout when you consider most of the themes out there, earning it a spot on our list here.
14. PopularFX
PopularFX is a simple yet powerful theme to build almost any type of website. It comes with a page builder to visually build websites swiftly and easily.
PopularFX homepage.PopularFX.
It is a fully responsive theme, with integrated Google Fonts and advanced Typography features. Their website includes multiple templates to help you quickly discover and set up various websites.
Pricing
Offered as a free theme download, PopularFX also provides a Pro version starting at $59/year (Personal license). The Professional and Business licenses cost $89/year and $249/year.
The Pro theme includes more templates, Pagelayer Pro, 50+ Pro widgets, and one year of support and theme updates.
Notable Features

  • Popular FX includes drag-and-drop functionality to help you design your pages by dragging widgets.
  • The theme includes in-line editing to add/remove text by clicking on any text.
  • PopularFX lets you add visual effects to your page elements. You can set it to trigger when the said element is visible.
  • The theme includes revision control, helping you undo, redo, or restore old versions of your theme.
  • PopularFX is fully customizable with its several widgets, helping you design pages with varied options such as font colors, sizing, animation, spacing, etc.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Does PopularFX stand up to more popular WordPress themes? Let’s find out!
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 97%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 527ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 638ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 96
  • Page Size: 79.10 KB
  • Load Time: 980ms
  • Requests: 8

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 99
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.8s
  • Speed Index: 1.8s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.8s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.8s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.5s
  • Speed Index: 0.8s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.5s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.5s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 61ms
  • Total Time: 61ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
PopularFX scored an impressive 100% GTmetrix performance score. Its PageSpeed Insights performance scores of 99 and 100 are excellent too. The theme’s Pingdom grade is also better than average. If working with drag-and-drop widgets is your thing, give PopularFX a try!
15. Twenty Twenty-One
Twenty Twenty-One is a default WordPress theme that launched with WordPress 5.6. Like its predecessor, it’s a minimalist theme that acts as a highly customizable blank canvas.
Twenty Twenty-One WordPress themeTwenty Twenty-One.
The theme supports several features, including automatic feed links, responsive embeds, custom backgrounds, and much more.
Pricing
Twenty Twenty-One is a free WordPress theme.
Notable Features

  • The theme acts as a blank canvas for your site, with the block editor as its brush.
  • Includes new block patterns to create more impactful layouts.
  • Twenty Twenty-One includes full block editor support.
  • You can set your custom background colors, including from a range of pre-selected color palettes conforming to AAA standards.
  • Supports dark mode.
  • You can add widgets below the site’s content in the footer.
  • Use the block editor to add content to your homepage easily.
  • You can add a site logo and social icons from the site’s backend.

For a complete list of its features, please visit our in-depth Twenty Twenty-One theme post.
Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Twenty Twenty-One has big shoes to fill in. Will it? Let’s see!
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 100%
  • Structure Score: 99%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 550ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0
  • Fully Loaded Time: 670ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 97
  • Page Size: 56.70 KB
  • Load Time: 667ms
  • Requests: 7

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.3s
  • Speed Index: 1.7s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 1.5s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.3s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 100
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.4s
  • Speed Index: 0.5s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.5s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.4s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 42ms
  • Total Time: 42ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
Twenty Twenty-One lived up to its predecessor’s reputation and performed exceptionally well across all tests. It scored the best of all the themes we tested. Its GTmetrix structure score of 99% is the highest, so are its perfect PageSpeed Insights scores for both mobiles and desktops. And with a TTFB of just 42ms, it hits it out of the park.
16. Twenty Twenty-Two
Twenty Twenty-Two is a default WordPress theme launched with WordPress 5.9. It’s designed to be a flexible, lightweight, and customizable default theme, providing an excellent playground for testing blocks, patterns, and templates.
A preview of the Twenty Twenty-Two WordPress theme.Twenty Twenty-Two.
This theme is perfect for exploring WordPress 5.9’s new features like Full Site Editing, Global Styles, Navigation blocks, and updated image galleries.
Pricing
Twenty Twenty-Two is a free WordPress theme.
Notable Features

  • The diversity and versatility of birds inspire the theme’s styles.
  • Twenty Twenty-Two’s typography is lightweight yet strong, and its color palette is inspired by nature.
  • Like birds, the theme’s layout elements sit gently on the webpage.
  • It was built for the Full Site Editing features introduced in WordPress 5.9. Every single page can be customized to suit your needs.
  • Includes dozens of new block patterns, and much more.

Fastest WordPress Theme Analysis
Like Twenty Twenty-One, will Twenty Twenty-Two live up to its predecessors? Or will it not? Let’s see!
GTmetrix

  • Performance Score: 99%
  • Structure Score: 98%
  • Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): 577ms
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.07
  • Fully Loaded Time: 661ms

Pingdom

  • Performance Grade: 97
  • Page Size: 504.90 KB
  • Load Time: 730ms
  • Requests: 8

PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)

  • Performance Score: 74
  • First Contentful Paint: 1.1s
  • Speed Index: 1.5s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 4.1s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 1.2s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 40ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.523

PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)

  • Performance Score: 86
  • First Contentful Paint: 0.4s
  • Speed Index: 0.4s
  • Large Contentful Paint (LCP): 0.5s
  • Time to Interactive (TTI): 0.4s
  • Total Blocking Time (TBT): 0ms
  • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): 0.875

Byte Check TTFB Test

  • Time To First Byte: 53ms
  • Total Time: 53ms
  • Header Size: 450b
  • Request Size: 201b

Test Conclusions
The Twenty Twenty-Two theme starts well with GTmetrix’s 99% performance score and 98% structure score. However, its page size of 564.90 KB is the largest of all the themes tested, annihilating its ranking among all the tests. Save for Pingdom, it scored the lowest across all the speed tests.
Scores aside, most of its other stats, such as PageSpeed Insights Speed Index and requests, are still outstanding. If you’re planning to use this latest default WordPress theme on your site, make sure to optimize it for better performance.

The Fastest WordPress Themes Ranked

Themes
GTmetrix Score
Pingdom Grade
PageSpeed Insights (Mobile)
PageSpeed Insights (Desktop)
TTFB

Astra
100%
98
100
100
47ms

Blank Canvas
100%
92
99
100
67ms

Customify
100%
97
98
100
52ms

GeneratePress
100%
98
100
100
54ms

Go
100%
94
94
99
65ms

Hello Elementor
100%
92
93
99
59ms

Hestia
100%
92
88
99
54ms

Neve
100%
98
100
100
51ms

OceanWP
99%
91
88
97
59ms

PopularFX
100%
95
98
99
53ms

Responsive
100%
95
98
99
53ms

Twenty Twenty
100%
97
100
100
78ms

Twenty Twenty-One
100%
97
100
100
78ms

Twenty Twenty-Two
99%
97
74
86
53ms

Zakra
100%
96
99
100
60ms

You may have noticed that the themes above are in no particular order. However, it’s essential to see how they compare in speed and performance tests.
Although it’s impossible to get a clear-cut view of which theme is fastest (a theme may be #1 in one test but #7 in another test), we can rank them based on the information collected.
Fastest WordPress Themes (Compared)
A chart of all the fasted WordPress themes we tested.Fastest WordPress themes compared.
It may help to get a visualization of the speed results. This first chart highlights all of the fastest themes on the X-Axis with comparisons of the final scores from four testing tools. Each one runs on a scale of 100.
Takeaways

  • The GTmetrix Performance Score varies from theme to theme, but not much. All are above 99.
  • Twenty Twenty-Two theme has the worst cumulative scores of all the themes tested. The next worst performer is OceanWP.
  • Although not bad, Hestia, Hello Elementor, Blank Canvas, and OceanWP have the lowest Pingdom scores.
  • Astra, GeneratePress, Neve, Twenty Twenty, and Twenty Twenty-One are the only ones that scored 100 in the PageSpeed Insights Mobile test.
  • Twenty Twenty-Two, OceanWP, and Hestia have low PageSpeed Insights Mobile scores, with Go and Hello Elementor also slightly lower than the top performers.

In the following chart, we’ll compare the load times, all of which are in milliseconds. Remember, lower is better.
A load times chart of all the fastest WordPress themes we tested.Load times chart for the fastest WordPress themes.
Takeaways

  • Blank Canvas produced the fastest GTMetrix Fully Load Time. GeneratePress, Sydney, PopularFX, Twenty Twenty-One, Twenty Twenty-Two, and Zakra aren’t far behind.
  • Twenty Twenty won the Pingdom Load Time battle, while PopularFX lost it by a considerable margin.
  • Neve has the fastest PageSpeed Insights (Mobile) Speed Index, closely followed by GeneratePress. OceanWP produced the slowest result here.
  • From the graph, it’s hard to tell that all the themes performed well in their TTFB battle. Nevertheless, the theme with the slowest TTFB is Twenty Twenty, while the one with the fastest TTFB is Twenty Twenty-One.
  • Overall, GeneratePress, Astra, Neve, Twenty Twenty, and Twenty Twenty-Two loaded the fastest across all tests.

We tested some of the fastest WordPress themes available for their speed and compared the results we gathered. A lightweight and optimized theme is crucial to have, but you shouldn’t forget about choosing a performance-focused hosting solution to make sure your website is set up for success from the get-go.
Now it’s your turn: when it comes to speed, what’s your preferred theme? We’d like to see your recommendations!

Save time, costs and maximize site performance with:

  • Instant help from WordPress hosting experts, 24/7.
  • Cloudflare Enterprise integration.
  • Global audience reach with 29 data centers worldwide.
  • Optimization with our built-in Application Performance Monitoring.

All of that and much more, in one plan with no long-term contracts, assisted migrations, and a 30-day-money-back-guarantee. Check out our plans or talk to sales to find the plan that’s right for you.