How to Make a WordPress Theme Demo Your Own
WordPress themes often come with pre-designed demos that look great and save time. The only issue is they can be a little unwieldy because of all the demo content.
Take five minutes to learn just how to customize a demo and make it your own. We’ll show you how to
Install Your WordPress Theme
The first step in the process requires a WordPress theme, preferably one that includes a one-click demo import. Any of the top selling themes on MOJO Marketplace should come with this feature. But, whatever WordPress theme you choose, check for that detail in the list of features before you buy.
In a way, you want to shop for your WordPress theme based on the demos if you’re going to use a demo to begin your design.
If you want to design your site completely custom (using WordPress), then check out this article on designing your site.
But if you’re going this route, pick out a theme with a demo that you like. Keep in mind that many developers create amazing demos for industry specific or niche websites.
And once you’ve settled on a theme, you can follow our guide to installing WordPress themes on your WordPress website.
Also, if you’re maybe a few steps behind, and you don’t have a domain or hosting set up yet, you can read our guide to setting up hosting and getting a domain.
Import Your WordPress Theme Demo
Next, if you found a demo that will work, you need to import it into your WordPress site. Due to the variety of themes available, I’ll run through two ways to import a demo.
Auto Import that Demo!
The first option is easy, and will work if your theme offers this functionality. I’ll use the Highend Multipurpose WordPress theme for this demo because it features one-click demo imports from the theme dashboard.
Here are the steps covered in the gif above:
- Open the Highend theme options tab
- Click Import Demos
- Browse the demos and click Import Demo on the one you want to import
- Choose which types of content you’d like to import, or simply select All to get the full demo
- Wait, because it can take a little while
Then, as simple as that, you’ll have the full demo design installed on your website, ready for you to customize it and replace the content.
Now, your theme may not include this in-dashboard import feature. No big deal! You wanna choose the theme that looks right for you, so we’ll show you how to do this manually as well.
DIY that Demo Import!
Okay, so this method is still easy. In the end, doing a little legwork here saves you a ton of time in designing your own site because you get to leverage the demo.
For this tutorial, I’m going to use the Jayo minimal portfolio WordPress theme, which offers a manual demo import. Here’s how it works:
1. Once your theme is installed and active, click Tools and Import.
2. Next, locate the WordPress Importer to the right. If not already installed, click Install, and wait for it to finish.
3. When you’re ready, click Run Importer. This will open up a page that allows you to upload a demo file.
4. Now, you need to locate the demo file for your theme, usually in your theme documentation or the developer’s website, and download it. For Jayo, I simply Googled “Jayo WordPress theme demo import” to get there faster, and clicked the link to documentation.
The documentations shows me the process, and directs me to a specific file in the theme folder. The theme folder is the full package of files you received when you purchased your theme. You’ll need to find that folder first, and locate the file (in this case jayo-demo.xml).
Or, if you bought your theme through MOJO, simply log in to your account, access your purchases, click the download button, and choose Demo Data.
5. Navigate back to the importer, as described above, and upload the file as shown in this gif. Make sure to select a different author after the demo is imported to make it your own.
Get Your Brand in There
After you’ve imported the demo, you probably want to start making it your own. One of the first, and most obvious ways to do that is to update your colors, fonts, and logo.
All of this can be done through the WordPress visual customizer under Appearance > Customize or from a theme options panel. Of course, this will depend completely on your theme, so you may need to reference your theme documentation or tutorials to figure out how to make specific changes.
If you need help figuring out your branding, see our article on creating an identity for your site.
And if you’re in need of a logo, check out this affordable and effective option offered on MOJO Marketplace.
Don’t Forget to Change the Filler Content!
The beauty of importing a demo is that you get a beautiful design out of the box.
The problem is, you’ll have every piece of content included in the demo to sort through. I suggest making a list of things you need, then go through your pages, posts, and menus and delete all the stuff you’re definitely not going to use.
Then, you can easily jump in to each page, post, or feature that you want from the demo, and insert your own content and images.
For more guidance on messing around with the content, check out our post on editing pages and menus in WordPress, and our post on drafting a great first blog post.
If you need help beyond that, or just some basic WordPress knowledge, look at the WordPress section on our blog, our WP Live WordPress support product, or a website like WP Beginner, which will cover the gamut of what you need to configure your site!