10 Best WordPress Themes for Creating a Viral Magazine
WordPress delivers some of the most streamlined content management experiences in the world. You can have a fully functional, modern website up and running in less than an hour. In fact, you can configure your entire site in such a way that it will last you for the next 10 years without a glitch. Indeed, WordPress does phenomenal things for publishers, both independent and editorial.
Magazine sites are some of the most popular among WordPress users. A magazine allows for a variety of content types, as well as categories, but also helps to foster a healthy community of regular contributors. The availability of magazine themes in WordPress is phenomenal. Anything from minimal to complex design is available through multiple theme collection channels.
That said, magazine sites don’t just operate under one umbrella. There’s different types and classes of magazines, as is the case with viral platforms. Sites like BuzzFeed, Zergnet, and Little Things — although look magazine-ish on the surface, operate on an entirely viral publishing framework. And you can recreate such sites yourself, too!
The two things that make viral sites so successful is simple content presentation and tools that help foster user engagement. There are of course other aspects like the content itself, but mostly you’re looking to make it easy for people to navigate your content and share it. The term ‘viral’ is deeply associated with social media and the effects that social media produces highly popular content.
In this post, we’re counting down the 10 most popular and best WordPress themes for viral magazines. These are not some bottom of the barrel picks, but real themes that can inspire you to take your viral platform to the next level.
As it stands right now, there really aren’t that many great viral themes available on the free WordPress theme directory. Some themes are attempting to fill the gap, but it’s nowhere near the design quality that premium designs are bringing to the table. Another way you could potentially solve this issue is to use a page builder plugin, or other WordPress plugins created specifically for promoting viral content.
If you do happen to find a theme that fits this space, let us know in the comments and we will add it asap. Otherwise, the rest of this post is dedicated to top-notch viral magazine themes from a premium marketplace. The pricing is nominal for what you get in return, and it’s going to save you countless development hours just to try and modify a free theme yourself.
That said, WordPress does have some superb and amazing themes available for free download.
GutenMag is our very own in-house built theme with full support for the Gutenberg Editor. With hundreds of users already, this is one of the easiest themes to work with in terms of customization and day-to-day management. And that’s precisely what a viral magazine needs. On top of that, GutenMag is stylish and with many modern features.
For example, you can style a page using nothing but Blocks from your editor. It’s as simple as adding a new Block and the design is instantly available.
Also, you can pick any of the provided demo designs to quickly achieve a specific magazine style. The Crypto Blog and Lifestyle Magazine designs can easily be turned into viral sensations. Go ahead, try it for yourself!
- Optimized for speed and performance. Incredible load times for all content styles and types.
- Multiple post formats and styles to give your content a dynamic sense of variety.
- Free resources like Google Fonts, SVG Icons, FontAwesome, and more.
Are you fully prepared to use the new WordPress content editor? Have you learned how to use Gutenberg in theme development? A lot of theme developers are pushing out Blocks-based themes, and Saxon is one of them.
This versatile theme lets you build a fresh content site fast. Do you want to write personal blogs, or maybe you need a full-on magazine layout? Whatever the site you’re after, Saxon can take care of you without much fuss. You also don’t need to know any coding, because everything’s drag and drop! So simple to use you might convince your parents to get a website.
Getting started is as simple as importing a completely pre-made design, including demo data. Afterward, you can style everything individually, and tailor the pre-made design to match your brand image. It’s quite fascinating to see how far we’ve come in WordPress theme development. Saxon includes 16 homepage blocks, and this number is growing with each new version release.
- The Saxon theme is built to withstand even the most demanding traffic spikes. Further, it’s SEO-friendly so that your content can rank well in Google from day one. And last but not least, every element is built with mobile-first design in mind!
- You can’t build a successful viral magazine unless you utilize the full potential of social media. With Saxon, you can easily integrate social media inside your daily publishing workflow. Also, Saxon provides a site-wide integration for MailChimp services.
- Homepage, archive pages, and other content layouts can be rearranged using nothing but drag & drop modules. Get the design structure you want without writing any code!
Bring The Pixel has dedicated their entire theme business to creating viral and monetization WordPress themes. If you need themes that deliver on the promise of modern design yet maintain stellar performance — start by checking out Bimber. This state of the art viral magazine theme will help you launch a new viral site in a mere few hours. And the emphasis is on the hours because setting up a viral site isn’t necessarily a simple task.
Nevertheless, Bimber helps to ease the process by giving you a lot of pre-built features and design aspects. Bimber works with your favorite WordPress plugins: WooCommerce, bbPress, Snax, myCRED, BuddyPress, and Restrict Content Pro. Further, this theme implements awesome usability tools like night-mode switcher. Visitors can switch site color from dark to light and vice versa with one click.
It’s also helpful that Bimber comes with 10+ demo designs. And each design is completely different from one another. You might even find it hard to tell that it’s the same theme across some of the templates. The Music one resembles a popular site Reddit — providing upvote and downvote functionality. But also listing content in a simple links-based listicle. A theme like Bimber is surely to take your viral magazine needs to the next level.
- The most recent 6.0 update has brought new features like social media widgets, lightbox galleries, video playlists, and impressive tools for monetizing your content.
- An original system designed for displaying archive pages. Rather than having the same layout on every page, you can switch things up and choose from more than 100+ templates.
- Truly viral post formats, including trivia quizzes, classic polls, memes, personality quizzes, and many others.
PX-lab is a team of experienced developers and designers working hard to express their creative passions through WordPress themes. Their portfolio is full of vibrant, and eloquent design styles that will leave you hungry for more. And with those same qualities, PX-lab is happy to assist its customers with their queries and other support-related matters.
BoomBox (4,000+ sales) is their most prized possession. An all-inclusive viral magazine theme with a one of a kind design. If you want your readers to feel like they’re part of a bigger community, then the BoomBox theme can help you achieve that result. Most importantly, BoomBox is built with a custom viral content builder — so you can create unique post formats as you go.
Lists, news, quizzes, funny photos, and other types of viral formats are easily achievable with BoomBox. Content can be displayed based on social media popularity, trending status, and community reactions.
The layout options in this theme are out of this world. We’re talking quick switching between full-width and boxed layouts. Also, numerous layouts for header and footer sections. The sidebar structure is fully customized, letting you insert sidebars in the most creative of ways. In fact, the layout is so flexible to customization that you can easily replicate other famous viral sites.
- Custom tags and display options for sponsored content. With this theme you can easily promote your partners content without losing that crisp design structure.
- Possibility to add custom reaction emojis. The default collection has hundreds of available icons though.
- All post formats are optimized for AMP so that you can cater to mobile-first requirements.
Vast Buzz has a design that’s hard to forget, and you want to hear statements such as ‘hard to forget’ when it comes to viral sites. This highly customizable theme has a diverse design structure, yet retains an element of aesthetic simplicity. Further, the features included in Vast Buzz are tailored specifically for viral websites. E.g. You can post content such as polls, videos, memes, lists, galleries, and basic news. Many, many different post formats in this one.
And you don’t even have to put in all that much work. There are dozens of homepage variations you can select, and that goes for customer headers and footers, too. The combination of these pre-made templates ensures that you can achieve maximum creative expression.
- Save some time and resources by letting your visitors submit viral content directly from front-end. New and existing members can sumit all available post formats that you can review before publishing.
- Super header styles, each one comes with attached reaction emojis for maxmimum viral exposure.
- Regularly updated to cover bugfixes and add support for new WordPress features.
Maggz from Select-Themes is based on seamless UX patterns, which are further complimented with an in-built Drag and Drop page building addon. In fact, Maggz comes with two premium add-ons without any extra cost: Visual Composer and Slider Revolution. As a result, customizing your post and page designs won’t take more than just a few clicks. Needless to say, it’s helpful that Select-Themes have designed their own Blocks and Layouts that you can reuse in any custom design.
The themes potential shines the most through its intricate features. For one, Maggz is powered by an intuitive management dashboard where you can control all these functions. Also, you don’t need to overinvest yourself in the design process as you can pre-select any of the integrated demo layouts. Choose what you like and make customizations with the provided page builder.
The immense shortcode support in this theme is also worth mentioning. There are shortcodes for layout elements like pricing tables, social buttons, banners, videos, galleries, CTA boxes, animations, and more. With the help of shortcodes, you can achieve the precise design layout that you’re going after.
- A refined magazine style that doesn’t feel like a traditional WordPress blog. Gives you an edge in terms of uniqueness and appeal.
- Thoughtful color schemes for each demo design. An underrated UX features that many other themes could benefit from.
- Beautiful designs for viral post types, especially lists. A list can be displayed so that it’s easy to scan and consume.
King is a WordPress theme for building powerful viral websites. The trendy and stylish design translates into an attractive appeal that’s going to lure in readers, unlike any other theme. And it helps that King’s theme structure is built with user-experience in mind. Despite having an extreme amount of nifty features, King manages to retain a stable composure and deliver on the premise of top-notch performance.
As it stands right now, King is built to emphasize content readability, but also the ease at which content can be shared on social media. The responsive design translates onto mobile devices effortlessly. And if you’re truly serious about running a viral site (mind you, it’s no small feat) — it should take you no longer than a day’s worth of work to get everything fully functional.
- Delicate widgets such as “hot” content, trending submissions, related posts, and posts based on popularity elements. There’s also a variety of options for how you wish to display your visual content.
- Beautiful reaction buttons that look awesome on mobile phones.
- Mark content with certain tags such as NSFW or Sponsored.
As you saw throughout this post, a lot of the viral themes we have listed are built as true strongholds. Meaning, they’re complex with definitive features that make viral sites so amazing. PRESSO, on the other hand, is a combination of a magazine layout and a select few viral features. It feels more on the magazine side than it does viral but nonetheless can fill the role of proper viral magazine design.
A great thing about PRESSO is that it’s based entirely on the concept of page composing. Forget about manually writing endless lines of code. With PRESSO — getting the design you want takes only a few drags and drop actions from the customization dashboard. Last but not least, this theme has an advanced filtering system built inside the core. A filter that you can use to filter out different types of posts, categories, and tags. As a result, you’re able to display important content in a more precise fashion.
- Infinite scrolling so that readers can keep enjoying your content for longer.
- Stunning Mega Menu to get your best content in front of readers attention.
- Hundreds of design possibilities using the page composer addon.
At last, we’re closing off on our excellent roundup for the best viral WordPress themes! And to truly finish it off in style — here is Bazinga. The Bazinga theme is attractive, modernly designed, and with a precise layout structure. The creamy color palette makes it easy on the eyes for the reader to pick a post that resonates with their interests.
That being said, there is no reason why you couldn’t use Bazinga for purposes other than the viral magazine. Out of the 100’s of customers so far, many are using the theme to run media sites, business blogs, and magazines about pop-culture. It’s a phenomenal piece of work when you start looking under the hood and seeing the potency of each feature.
And don’t get us started on how simple it is to set everything up. Quite literally, the setup can be completed through a simple one-click install process. Just pick the optimal settings and the theme will do all of the other hard work automatically. As a result, you can spend more time customizing and adding that juicy viral content.
- Clean codebase with a strong integration for latest front-end development tricks.
- Advanced settings for the blog. Custom post aimations, multiple post formats, and feed optimization.
- A theme framework that acts as the control panel for managing all site elements and design options.