Astra is a fully-customizable WordPress theme suitable for blogs, personal portfolios, business websites, and eCommerce sites (WooCommerce). The Astra theme is pre-configured with all WordPress installations allowing you to use any of the free ready-made starter templates designed by professionals.
This article provides further information about the Astra theme and how to install it to quickly build and customize a website without the need for coding.
What is a WordPress website builder?
A WordPress website builder is a plugin that allows you to easily create a website. There are various types of website builders, such as Gutenberg, Elementor, and Beaver Builder.
The Starter Templates plugin
The Starter Templates plugin is installed automatically when you install WordPress in the panel. This plugin gives you access to pre-made website templates you can use with any of the website builders below.
The three website builders
The following are the three website builders you can use with the Astra theme and the Starter Templates plugin.
Also known as the Block Editor (or Default WordPress Editor), Gutenberg is a user-friendly builder that enables you to design your posts and pages more easily. It replaced the WordPress Classic Editor to offer a more intuitive web-building experience.
The Spectra plugin
The Spectra plugin powers up the Gutenberg editor with advanced blocks that help you speed up the process of website building with easy-to-use settings and customizations for intuitive visual styling. To learn more about Spectra and Astra, see the following links:
Elementor is a drag-and-drop page builder for WordPress. This plugin helps you create beautiful dynamic pages using a visual editor.
Beaver Builder is a flexible drag-and-drop page builder that works on the front end of your WordPress website. It allows you to easily create websites and landing pages without writing any code.
Comparing the various website builders
View the following links for a comparison between the three website builders:
Which website builder should I use?
If your goal is performance, Gutenberg is your best choice.
If your goal is to have broader functionality and ease-of-use, then Elementor or Beaver Builder is a better choice.
If you don’t know how to build a site using any of these builders, you can get started using a starter template, which is covered in the following section.
How to get started with the Astra Theme
If you picked the Starter Templates option when installing WordPress on your site, the following page appears when opening the WordPress dashboard:
View the following video for more information about how to use the Starter Templates plugin:
Using a template to build a website
To create a new template:
- Click the Get Started button on the WordPress Dashboard page.
- Click the Build Your Website Now button that appears on the following page.
- The Page Builder opens:
- Select a Page Builder.
DreamHost recommends using the Block Editor (Gutenberg) builder since all of its available templates are free and there are numerous types that you can choose from.
- After selecting the Block Editor, a list of available templates appear.
- Select a template that you wish to use. You can filter all templates by their popularity, date, or industry. You can then edit the following options before making your new layout live:
- Upload a logo (suggested Dimensions: 180x60 pixels)
- Edit the logo width
- Change colors
- Change fonts
- Enter additional details about your business when prompted.
DreamHost recommends leaving all of the options under Advanced Options checked (except Shared Non-Sensitive Data, which you can uncheck if you wish).
- When finished, click the Submit & Build My Website button.
The installation process should take no more than a few minutes to complete. Once it finishes, click the View Your Website button to navigate to your website. You are then able to edit the contents of your website as desired.