Videos and music are playing a greater and greater part in building awareness and attracting customers for your business, but sadly, most themes are not designed for video to play the starring role. If your WordPress site is focused on video, then you need one of these WordPress video themes built specifically for your content.
Recently, I was hired to build a video site for a client that had a combination of self-hosted, Youtube and Vimeo videos and had a laundry list of features he wanted included. Before setting up his site, I tested the latest and highest-rated video themes available, and I truly thought it would be a close competition. Nope.
Any of these themes would be outstanding for a casual video site, but for a commercial video site that can scale quickly, almost out of the box, there was one true winner..
This theme is truly a theme designed specifically for video hosting websites and video businesses. It is so advanced, so integrated in every way, that I was blown away. It is not the easiest theme to customize, but it has a number of video-specific features that I did not know were even available until I tested this theme. This is the first theme I have tested from this author, but I will be coming back to them after this.
You can embed just about any video (Youtube, Vimeo, Dribble etc.) or self-host your videos on their server. I tested this theme on 6 different devices, and it is truly fully responsive. It comes with Slider Revolution and Visual Composer included ($49 value), and a complete demo content with pre-built pages that you can customize, instead of starting from scratch.
Here is where it gets interesting.. they have a proprietary plugin that allows you to play an advertising video before the main video plays. There are customizable settings in the dashboard to allow the viewer to exit the ad after a number of seconds (think Youtube). This is a feature I have not found on any other theme.
You can divide your content into free and premium with a membership plugin. This plugin, Membership Pro, allows you to set up recurring payments, dripped content, multiple subscription levels, and protect your member forums. There are multiple payment gateways, and unlimited configurations.
There is an internal video view counter, Google rich snippets are supported out of the box, and it comes with Social Locker, requiring your audience to share your content before viewing it.
The theme is Google Adsense responsive, so no matter where your traffic is coming from, you generate revenue. True Mag auto-updates, is WPML and BuddyPress ready, and cactusthemes has a terrific support forum with quick response times. Logged in visitors can build a favorites playlist, as well as submit user-generated videos.
This is an attractive video theme with an advanced GT3 page builder for easy design and changes. There are a number of video features such as fullscreen slider, background image and video, gallery and portfolio showcasing options and basically unlimited template customization that make this a good template for a personal video site.
This theme is fairly new, so the fact that I found it rather buggy despite the high rating is no surprise. The authors answer support requests quickly, and they are quick to offer help if you need a custom bit of code. The problem is, almost everything needs custom code. The header options are few, so if you do not like the standard layout you need to code a new one.
The documentation on this theme says fully responsive, but on my S2, it definitely is not. The gallery does not support captions. When I tested this theme, it did not support Woocommerce (but I believe a recent update may have included this). This theme does not support self-hosted videos, even for background and sliders. This means you have to load any slider video to Youtube or Vimeo, and then embed it to your slider. Baffling.
All in all, this is a good theme, and I think as it develops, it will get better and better. For now, I would recommend it for personal or small business sites that are not trying to monetize their content, but nothing more.
On paper, this should be an outstanding video portal site. This theme is integrated with some proven, effective WP plugins like BuddyPress, AdRotate, Contact Form 7, and it sets up fast and loaded with demo content. It has a decent drag-and-drop front end page builder, and it is responsive and retina ready.
You can embed Youtube, Vimeo, Dailymotion or self-hosted, and there are multiple ad options – preroll, midroll, postroll, adskip, and more. It should be a great theme, but with all of the options I mentioned, there is just so much missing. No capability to add video from the desktop, no ability for members to upload video, does not work with the latest WP Video Gallery, no automatic theme updates. (Note- I spoke to the author, and these are supposed to be addressed in the latest update.) I will test this theme with the next update, and update this post after the test.
Conclusion – For any type of video site, for any use, there is really only one winner here.. True Mag. The theme is so intuitive, so scalable, so flexible, that there is really nothing video-related that you cannot do with it. It was so much better than the competition that it really was not fair. If you intend on producing a video website, especially if you plan to monetize it, this is the only theme I would recommend.
What do you think? Is there another video theme you think should be included here? Leave us a comment and let us know.