Fastest WordPress themes: Best free lightweight themes

Best free lightweight themes

The fastest WordPress themes in the market today include the following:

  • Kadence
  • Generate Press
  • Blosky
  • Astra
  • Sydney
  • OceanWP

Are you looking for the best free lightweight WordPress themes? Look no further! We have compiled a list of the top options available.

Performance test of the fastest WordPress themes

I created a simple WordPress website using each theme on a Vultr basic cloud instance. There were no page builders used in this test. I then ran four-speed tests for each using google page speed insight and GTMetrics.

The table below shows the overall scores of each theme including the total server requests made and page sizes. No optimization plugin was used.

GTMetrics Results

This data represents the average of each theme.

ThemeKadenceGenerate PressAstraBloskySydneyNeveOceanWP
Total size (KB)891874885893893884991

ThemeKadenceGenerate PressAstraBloskySydneyNeveOceanWP
Total requests20181718211933

The total server requests and page size can be significantly reduced if you install an optimization plugin like Perfmatters, WP Rocket, or LiteSpeed cache These results might differ depending on your WordPress configuration, the template used, and web hosting.

Google page speed results

ThemeKadenceGenerate PressAstraBloskySydneyNeveOceanWP
Page speed999998999810096

All the core web vitals were green, giving a quality performance.

These themes don’t add any bloat making them lightweight. It should be noted that OceanWP adds a little extra weight due to its detailed customizer. However, its performance was still solid.

Overall, this is just a small part of the bigger picture, your hosting provider, plugins used, and website design will play a key role in determining your website’s performance.

I highly recommend Kadence, Neve, and Blosky as the best lightweight WordPress themes as they come with all features necessary to run a successful website without having to add extra plugins. Generate Press is very fast, but the free version is very limiting.

Related: 7 Cheapest web hosting providers for all business categories

Which is the fastest lightweight WordPress theme?

Kadence Theme

Best free lightweight themes

Kadence is a free lightweight theme, fast, and responsive, and includes a variety of pre-designed templates and a drag-and-drop page builder. This makes it easy to customize the look of your site.

Kadence Key Features

  • Kadence theme comes with its own theme builder called Kadence blocks.
  • Header builder – This includes a transparent and sticky header on all devices.
  • Footer builder – It comes with an easy drag-and-drop interface.
  • Custom layouts – Helps to define sidebars, and much more.
  • Custom post types to control layouts in the WordPress customizer
  • Global color, typography, and button settings.
  • The pro version comes with hooked elements.


  • Kadence theme is optimized for Search Engines out of the box.
  • It is easy to use and customize.
  • Offers more features than you would otherwise pay for other premium WordPress themes.


Best free lightweight themes

GeneratePress is a fast and easy-to-customize theme that offers a variety of options for customizing the look and feel of your site, including custom colors, fonts, and layouts.

Related: Kadence AI Review

Generate Press Features

Generate Press is a performance-focused theme. It comes with a free theme builder called Generate Blocks to visually design every aspect of your WordPress website without touching any line of code.


  • It is lightweight and fast, making it ideal for sites with high traffic.


  • The free version lacks many design options found on the premium one.

Neve Theme

Fastest WordPress themes

Neve theme is proving to be one of the fastest WordPress themes in the market. The free version comes with a pack of features, that are available in most premium themes. It seamlessly integrates with Gutenberg and most page builders. The free version comes with Beaver Builder.

Features of Neve theme

  • sticky navigation,
  • Global color palettes
  • It is WooCommerce ready – You can build a simple store with the free theme.
  • advanced layouts,
  • Infinite scrolling- The option is available on the single post customizer.
  • Custom header and footer which uses drag-and-drop components.

Astra Theme

Best free lightweight themes

Astra is another lightweight, fast, and customizable theme. It comes with a variety of pre-designed templates and a drag-and-drop page builder, making it easy to create a professional-looking site quickly.


  • It is lightweight and fast, making it ideal for sites with high traffic.


  • It may not have as many design options as the free option; hence you are forced to purchase the premium theme.

Blocksy Theme

Best free lightweight themes

Blocksy is also a lightweight, customizable theme that includes a free drag-and-drop page builder and a variety of pre-designed templates. This makes it easy to create a unique and visually appealing site.

Sydney WordPress theme

Best free lightweight themes

Sydney is a freemium, lightweight theme. The theme gives you more control to customize your website as you desire. It also integrates well with the block editor.

This WordPress theme is suitable for business websites, e-commerce, and freelance portfolio website. The premium theme comes with more features and options to customize your site.


Best free lightweight themes

OceanWP is compatible with elementor page builder. You can create a unique design with the theme using the free pre-designed templates in their library. This makes it easy to create a professional-looking site quickly.

Lightweight themes FAQs

A lightweight theme is a theme that is designed to be fast and efficient, with minimal code and fewer features. This can help your website load faster, which can improve user experience and search engine rankings.

There are several benefits to using a lightweight theme:

  • Improved performance: Lightweight themes can help your website load faster, which can improve user experience and search engine rankings.
  • Easier to customize: With fewer features and simpler code, lightweight themes can be easier to customize and modify to suit your needs.
  • Smaller file size: Lightweight themes tend to have smaller file sizes, which can save space on your web server and make it easier to back up your website.

Some popular lightweight WordPress themes include GeneratePress, Kadence, Neve, Astra, Sydney, Blocksy, and OceanWP.

When choosing a lightweight theme for your website, consider your specific needs and requirements. Think about the features and functionality you need, and consider factors like design, customization options, and performance. It is wise to try out a few different themes to see which one works best for you.

Disclosure: We may earn commission for purchases that are made by visitors on this site at no additional cost on your end. All information is for educational purposes and is not intended for financial advice. Read our affiliate disclosure.

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