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OceanWP Review: A Free Popular WordPress Theme with Premium Features

Last Updated on August 31st, 2023

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OceanWP is a free, multipurpose WordPress theme created by a single developer looking to cater to those who want an affordable theme with premium-like features.

Frustrated with the fact that many free themes do not function like website owners want, and unimpressed with the idea that in order to have that functionality you must pay for a premium theme, OceanWP was created.

And in response, it has become one of the fastest growing free WordPress themes used by both hobbyists and developers alike.

With beautiful design elements, and enough functionality to run any kind of website, OceanWP is a definite contender for those looking to grab a free WordPress theme and build a website from the bottom up.

Let’s take a look and see just what OceanWP has to offer and see if you agree all this hype is right.

OceanWP: An Overview

OceanWP is a fully customizable WordPress theme ready to take on your biggest website building ventures. It has clean code so you know you website data is always secure. In addition, it is lightweight so you never sacrifice your site’s speed and performance.

And yet, despite all of this, it still comes packed to the max with all the features you need to build a stunning, yet professional, website to meet your needs.

Some of OceanWP’s features include:

  • Responsive design so layouts will adjust to any screen size
  • Built-in SEO for better indexing and search rankings
  • Lightning fast speed for a great user experience
  • Translation ready and compatible with the WPML translation plugin
  • Multiple mobile menus styles
  • PHP7.1 compatible
  • Extensive Mega Menu for complex menus
  • Support for all popular page builders
  • Menu Icon integration

The level of control OceanWP gives you over the heading elements is one area that sets it apart from other popular WordPress themes. 

Unlike other themes, it comes with a plethora of tools you can use to design headers and the top bar.  

Moreover, this theme lets you create unlimited modal forms, custom sidebars, and below headers. 

Options like sticky headers, popup logins, and footer callouts aren’t available with the theme’s free version, so you must upgrade to OceanWP’s premium version if you want to use them. 

I want to point out how easy it is to create blog posts with this theme, as you can choose how the text will look on a page, add images, and write meta descriptions. 

Speaking of images, OceanWP’s plans include Freepik stock images and hundreds of free icons from the Flaticon platform.

As you can see, despite its lightweight and affordable price tag, OceanWP is already showing some promise by way of its feature set.

Main OceanWP Features

One-Click Demo Content

OceanWP comes with over a dozen stylish and unique demos to get you site building the easy way.

Blogger Demo

oceanwp theme blogger demo

For those with a lot of content to share, the blogger demo is a perfect solution. Your readers will enjoy the continuous scroll feature so they can continue to see all that you have to offer. With its masonry grid layout, complete with post excerpt and thumbnail image, site visitors will know exactly what each article is about before viewing it.

Travel Demo

oceanwp theme travel demo

The travel demo offers a large hero image for grabbing site visitors’ attention right away, a popular post section guiding readers to your best content, and integrated social media icons in the header to encourage social shares. Additionally, add a newsletter subscribe box in the footer section so people can stay updated on all your adventures.

Coach Demo

 oceanwp theme customizer panel

If you run a gym, the coach demo has you covered. With the ability to easily showcase your services, image galleries with links to more information, happy customer testimonials, and an impressive pricing table, you will have people signing up to get fit in no time.

In addition, OceanWP has the following demo content:

  • Simple
  • Stylish
  • Architect
  • Lingerie
  • Gym Club
  • Lawyer
  • Store
  • Personal
  • Yoga
  • Mega Gym

There are two ways you can import demo content onto your WordPress website:

  • Ocean Demo Import. This is a free plugin designed to help you import demo content, widgets, and customizer settings of OceanWP onto your website. Simply install and activate the plugin, navigate to Theme Panel > Install Demos and select which demo to import onto your website.
  • Themecloud. This managed hosting provider will allow you to import any OceanWP demo content you want.

Theme Panel

In addition to the default WordPress Theme Customizer, OceanWP comes with its own Theme Panel for quickly customizing the look and feel of your website.

To start, you can disable any Customizer panels that you do not have on your website or do not need anymore.

oceanwp theme customizer panel typography

Next, you can access some of the most important features in the WordPress Theme Customizer by using the links provided. For instance, access the logo uploader, footer sections, and even choose your typography.

oceanwp theme customizer panel typography step 2

You can change the typography of your website in impressive ways. Not only can you change the overall font style that appears on your website, you can also specify the fonts of your headings, breadcrumbs, footer text, and menu items.

oceanwp theme customizer panel typography step 3

Customize your header to be fullwidth, transparent, or as a top menu. Add custom images to appear when a reader clicks on your header menu, integrate social media icons, add a logo, and even create a mobile-only header menu.

oceanwp theme customizer panel typography step 4

Change every tiny detail as it relates to your blog posts in the Blog Entries section. For example, add a sidebar, complete with custom widgets of your choosing, define columns and grid style, and even implement an infinite scroll or pagination feature.

 oceanwp theme customizer panel typography step 5

Aside from offering hundreds of templates, the OceanWP theme allows you to create new templates with the WordPress visual editor

Each custom template you make is reusable, and you can use the shortcode to create a new blog post or a promotional page quickly.

In the end, there really isn’t much you can’t do with OceanWP’s Theme Panel which makes this free WordPress theme that much more impressive.

WooCommerce Ready

woocommerce ready oceanwp theme

No matter which demo content you decide to use, if any, you can easily turn your website into an eCommerce shop using the popular WooCommerce plugin.

In addition, since OceanWP’s Theme Panel is so extensive, they boast that the need for extra WooCommerce add-ons is unnecessary since most of what you want to do can be done using the OceanWP theme.

For example:

  • Use the Advanced Styling section to customize different store elements
  • Choose how to display your products – grid, list, with or without a sidebar, etc.
  • Add up-sells and related products
  • Display start ratings and customize its look
  • Enable a shop button without the need for coding or another plugin
  • Personalize your shop by displaying customers’ names in the top bar

OceanWP Extensions

As a way of making this free theme even more useful for website owners of all kinds, OceanWP comes with a number of free and premium extensions for adding functionality and design elements to your site.

  • Woo Popup. Display a popup to customers when they click on your Add to Cart button. ($16)
  • Posts Slider. Share your latest posts with site visitors using this beautiful slider. (FREE)
  • Side Panel. Add a responsive side panel (rather than a simple sidebar) with your preferred widgets. ($29)
  • Sticky Header. Attach a sticky header to the top of your screen for an improved navigation experience. ($29)
  • Social Sharing. Easily add social share buttons to any of your posts. (FREE)

Additionally, you can: 

  • Add a portfolio to your website
  • Enable a sticky footer 
  • Place content into modal windows 
  • Get custom hooks 
  • Import demo content 
  • Create a custom sidebar 
  • Add Elementor widgets 
  • Display a footer callout
  • Add share buttons to your products
  • And even add meta boxes to your site with OceanWP’s additional extensions.

For instance, the Custom Hooks feature enables you to place content in different website sections without altering the theme’s code. You can create hooks for users with specific roles or certain types of content. 

You can use this feature to insert ads into a post or assign different content types to the same hook location. Moreover, this option enables you to insert shortcodes or PHP code to specific page sections. 

Here are a few more useful OceanWP theme extensions:

  • The White Label extension can come in handy if you want to change the theme’s name, author, and description. 
  • The Cookie Notice option allows you to inform visitors your site is GPDR compliant and choose the script that loads after a user accepts the website’s cookie policy

Access all of OceanWP’s core extensions, plus any future extensions, for $79.

Documentation & Support

OceanWP has an extensive knowledge base available for helping you with things like getting started and how to use the extensions. In addition, they offer a FAQ section for common issues user come across, as well as a set of coding articles for developers that are using OceanWP.

oceanwp theme documentation & support

In addition, a YouTube channel with video tutorials was recently launched at the end of last year and is available for those that prefer to see the theme in action onscreen.

As far as support is concerned, here are the details as laid out by OceanWP:

You can expect a response within a 24-hour time frame during regular business hours (9AM and 5PM FR time) Monday through Friday.

How Much Does the OceanWP Theme Cost?

As I noted earlier, you can build a website with the OceanWP theme for free. However, the theme’s free version comes with limitations, and you must purchase one of the theme’s premium plans to unlock all its features. 

You can choose between annual subscription and lifetime license options for each plan. 

OceanWP’s Personal plan is the most affordable option. The annual subscription for the Personal plan costs $54, while you have to spend $222 to get a lifetime license. 

Buying this plan will enable you to build three websites with OceanWP theme and give you access to 210 pro demos, Elementor Sections library, and 21 free and premium extensions. 

The lifetime license for the Business plan is $356, but you can buy the annual subscription for  $89. The plan gives you the right to use OceanWP on six websites, import images and icons directly from Freepik and Flaticon platforms, or attend exclusive webinars. 

The Agency plan exceeds the needs of most OceanWP users, and it’s best suited for companies building a vast website portfolio. The plan includes permission to use OceanWP on fifty sites, and it costs $159, billed annually. Optionally, you can buy the lifetime license for $636.

Frequently Asked Questions about the OceanWP theme

Is OceanWP Theme Free?

The OceanWP theme has been free since it was first launched in 2016. However, you can’t use this theme on more than one website for free. 

The Personal plan enables you to build three websites with the theme and extends the range of pro demos you have at your disposal. 

Business and Agency themes deliver a higher level of customer support and an opportunity to become an OceanWP partner, but they don’t extend the theme’s toolset significantly. 

Consequently, you should only consider buying them if you want to build new websites frequently with this theme. It’s also worth noting that OceanWP has a 14-day money-back guarantee. 

How Do I Install OceanWP Theme on WordPress?

This theme is available in the WordPress repository, so you don’t have to leave the dashboard to install it. Let’s go through the steps you must complete to get the OceanWP theme up and running on your website. 

  • Go to the Appearance menu in the WordPress dashboard and click Theme. 
  • Click Add New Theme button in the Theme window and type OceanWP in the search bar
  • The theme will appear in the search results. Click the Install button in the lower-left corner of the theme’s preview. 
  • Hit the Activate button after the installation is completed 
  • You’ll see the ‘This Theme Recommends the Following Plugin’ notification at the top of the Themes page. 
  • Click the ‘Begin Installing Plugin link below this notification, select all recommended plugins, and press Apply button. 
  • The Theme Panel will be added to the dashboard once you install the recommended plugins. 

Final Thoughts

Altogether, OceanWP is an impressive multipurpose theme that definitely proves it is worth the many downloads it has experienced. Very rarely do you find an actual free theme with so many features and customization options.

And, with the vast amount of documentation available, along with helpful support, despite OceanWP being a free WordPress theme, it is no wonder people feel comfortable using this theme.

If you are looking for a truly feature-packed theme, complete with all the features you could need no matter what type of website you are building, and simply do not want to pay for a premium theme, I highly recommend you giving OceanWP a look. Chances are, it is going to have exactly what you are looking for because that was why it was created in the first place.

Get OceanWP Here

Have you ever used OceanWP? What do you think about its extensive feature list? I would love to hear all about it in the comments below!

A team of WordPress experts that love to test out new WordPress related software, WordPress plugins and WordPress themes.