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How to test multiple themes on one site?

  1. How can I test multiple themes on one site. I'm new. As I see it in trying out a few themes, each theme has certain features that don't work on other themes. Understandable.

    Live Preview only takes you so far. To really test and review a theme you need to spend some time working with the theme. Some changes become destructive to the original theme.

    I could set up multiple accounts. But I wonder if there is a more elegant simple solution.

    Thank you!

    The blog I need help with is healthbygeorge.wordpress.com.

  2. Hey healthbygeorge,

    Most themes are compatible, format-wise, but can vary wildly in function and design. Note that all of the themes can look very different depending on their function as well. For example, a static home page can be very different from a home page that shows your latest blog posts.
    https://en.support.wordpress.com/pages/front-page/

    Changing themes is also a simple process, and you won't lose any of your
    data in the process (posts, pages, categories, tags, etc), but you may lose some of the changes you've made in the Customization tool, since different themes can have different color palettes or widget locations.

    To preview a theme, go to My Sites - Themes, then search for the type of theme you want. When you find one, click on the three dots to the right of the theme's name, and click "Try & Customize." This will take you straight the "Customize" page, and show you what your site would look like in that theme, without actually activating it. This way, you won't lose any of your Customization options on your current theme. If you like what you see, you can click "Save and Activate," and your changes will go live.

    The best way to test out a theme is to activate it on your blog, review the support documents for the theme, customize it, and try it out for a while!

    For more, check out the support documents at:
    https://en.support.wordpress.com/themes/
    https://en.support.wordpress.com/customizer/
    https://wordpress.com/themes

    I hope this helps! If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out.

  3. but you may lose some of the changes you've made in the Customization tool, since different themes can have different color palettes or widget locations.

    I understand you data is not lost. I don't want to lose the customization from one theme while testing our an alternate theme.

    It is loss of customization I am trying to prevent. Thank you.

  4. @healthbygeorge,

    It is loss of customization I am trying to prevent.

    That's unavoidable on a single site. As @scosgro indicated above, the available palettes and widget locations will vary from theme to theme. Menus too have different locations depending upon the theme applied. Custom CSS modifications on one theme likely won't work on the next theme, because CSS is theme-specific. The Switch Themes section of the Themes support page provides a list of things to check after switching from one theme to another.

    I could set up multiple accounts. But I wonder if there is a more elegant simple solution.

    You may create as many sites in one account as you like. I don't think WordPress.com will frown on duplicate sites on a single account, as long only one of them is public. Keep test sites set on private.

  5. Clarification on Custom CSS:

    The Custom CSS part of the Switch Themes section of the Themes support page says:

    The only thing that would not come with you is Custom CSS, because that is theme-specific. You will find your past CSS in the CSS revisions link located at My Sites → Customize → CSS.

  6. That answered my question! Thanks.

  7. @musicdoc1

    You may create as many sites in one account as you like. I don't think WordPress.com will frown on duplicate sites on a single account, as long only one of them is public. Keep test sites set on private.

    Great advice. Your advice is always right on.

    @healthbygeorge

    See here: Adding a New Site or Blog to an Existing Account
    https://en.support.wordpress.com/create-a-blog/#adding-a-new-site-or-blog-to-an-existing-account and here Privacy Settings https://en.support.wordpress.com/settings/privacy-settings/

  8. @healthbygeorge,

    You're welcome!

    @timethief,

    Thanks. : -)

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