I just change my theme early this month. Thus I discovered that there are things that we need to backup or take note before changing theme. Things that we edit through CSS editor might not be there once we switch to other theme. Below are the few things that we should take into consideration before and after making the move:
- Go through your files and note down the additional code that you inserted. You might not remember all of them but try to catch as much as you can. Make a copy of all that you are not sure just in case you need to refer back. This way you’ll know what to insert back if the code is missing. Files that we mostly make changes are style sheet, header, footer and single post. One example that I face is the stats tracking script from MyBlogLog. I have to reinstall them after changing my theme.
- Make a copy of all the code that you place in your sidebar. Things might mess up if you switch between widget ready themes and non ready themes. Some of the free WordPress theme might not state this clearly. I was lucky as the new theme that I apply is widget ready. The only thing that I need to edit is the sidebar placing.
- Deactivate all the plugins before changing your theme. Some of the themes might already have the same features as the plugins that you install. Check if you still need your previous plugins. Activate your plugins after changing your theme and monitor the changes. If you activate the plugins one at a time, then you can track the changes and able to reverse easily if thing goes wrong. My previous theme has the related post feature but not in my new theme. In this case I have to install a related post plugin. The plugin works just fine but I need to find a way to move the related post before the comments.
- Check everything after changing theme. Start from the most important parts like RSS subscription, about page, contact, search box, archives, categories and recent post. One of the problems that I have after changing to this theme is the email subscription that is not working. I got it fix after referred back to the theme designer’s site. From there you can find many feedbacks regarding problems bloggers encounter when switching to this theme. That saves you a lot of time and trouble checking through every detail.
- Test your new theme in different browsers. The two most common browsers that you can use are Internet Explorer and Firefox. I did some changes on my new theme that has no problem with Firefox but shows error when using Internet Explorer. I’m still trying to fix it at this moment. At least my blog is able to display all the important content even with the errors with Internet Explorer. You can try using this site to view how your blog displayed at various browsers.
Always remember to backup your blog when you are making changes. You?ll never know what will happen and it’s best to be prepared. Finally let your readers know that you are changing theme and request for feedbacks if they encounter any problems browsing through your blog.