Clean, Simple but Powerful

25+ Master Tips on How to get your theme approved on ThemeForest

Last Update: 01 Apr, 2024

Getting your theme approved and published on Themeforest can seem like a daunting task. However, a few simple steps can help you ensure a successful submission.

Submit your theme only when you are ready to publish it. This means that you have tested it and worked out any bugs before putting in the final touches. Ensure that your theme is well documented, with clear instructions on how to use the software or workflows in your product.

This article includes a detailed troubleshooting guide for users who may experience issues with the website theme.

Get your theme approved on ThemeForest

1) Easy-to-use design that is not cluttered with literary features

ThemeForest wants a clean, easy-to-use design that is not cluttered with too many features or options. This site wants an intuitive design so customers can navigate the site without difficulty and without being distracted by every feature they may want to explore.

Designers and developers need help trying to find the perfect website template. With over 2 million templates in its database, ThemeForest has one of the largest online collections of themes. ThemeForest is a marketplace for WordPress themes and other design elements. They are looking for suchlike themes.

A clean and easy-to-use design that is not cluttered with too many features or options will create a streamlined shopping experience that will resonate with customers.

Strongly recommended commands:

wp_head() – just before
wp_footer() – just before
body_class() – inside or tags

2) The design should be professional and not look amateurish or childish

The design of the theme should look professional and professional. It should be simple, clean, and uncluttered. The design should also be responsive to different screen resolutions.

Designing a website theme for a business is all about the call for the right message to the target audience. The theme’s design impacts how your website is perceived and what impression it leaves on visitors.

The colors for a website theme should be chosen with the company’s brand in mind. It is generally recommended to use fewer colors than possible since this can dilute the whole message of the brand. Since logos can also vary from logo design to logo design, using only a few colors could confuse visitors.

Professional Design

3) The design should be responsive and support mobile devices like smartphones and tablets

Website theme designs should be responsive and support mobile devices. This is because the number of people who find a use for mobile devices to the way on the internet has increased. Mobile is not a trend anymore, and it has become a necessity. The design should be responsive, meaning that it should adjust to different screen sizes across all devices. File paths should be used if possible. It is also important for the theme to work well on mobile platforms.

Following WordPress 4.7+ functions be used


Responsive web design

4) The theme design should be compatible with all browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc.

The theme design should be compatible with all browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc. The theme design should also work on mobile devices because people use their phones more than computers. The theme design should have a clean and minimal interface that is easy to navigate and understand. You can use Theme Check, which is an excellent way to ensure that your WordPress theme is up to the latest coding standards. It doesn’t cover all aspects, but it’s still a good starting point. It would help if you ran it before publishing it on ThemeForest.

Cross browser compatibility

5) The template’s code must be well written to reduce any errors when installed on a website

The code of the template must be well written in order to reduce any errors when it is installed on a website. In order for a website to work properly, the code must be well-written. You can get errors if you do not have a good programmer who can write the code of your template.

One of the first gradations you should look at when debugging your theme is to check for PHP errors. There should not be any PHP notices or warnings that pop up during this process. One way to ensure there are no errors with your code is by enabling WP Debug and reviewing your theme.

When you submit a new update, it’s always best to review your code and catch any errors before it reaches production. We see these PHP errors come through the update queue all the time.

error free good code

6) It should have a demo page

The potential buyers can see how the theme would look on their own site before they purchase.

A demo page is a great way to show your potential buyers what their site would look like with your theme. This will help them make a more informed decision about purchasing the theme and will also reassure them that the theme will work for their site.

It is important to have this page as it will help increase conversion rates and make sure that you get more sales.

Demo Page

7) It should be professional, clean, and easy to use with a simple design

Wrong PHP errors and warnings are often ignored by developers who are in a hurry. They are not a big deal.

These errors and warnings can lead to serious problems that could have been avoided if they had been addressed in time. This is why it is momentous to know how to fix PHP errors and warnings in order to avoid potential problems.

The first step is identifying the error or warning that needs fixing. Once the error or warning has been identified, the developer will need to figure out what caused it, then find out how to fix it. If you’re looking to get your theme approved on ThemeForest, fixing PHP errors and warnings might be the best check for you.

professional clean and simple design

8) The theme should not have any bugs or errors that can cause problems for the user in the future

WordPress has a plugin directory. It is separate from the template directory, but it can be included in the template directory. When you include an existing plugin, you get that folder’s location instead of the true location of the plugin. The TGM Plugin Activation library will help you include pre-packaged WordPress plugins. When using it, don’t get the template directory, which uses the wrong plugin location, and get the stylesheet directory instead.

9) The theme is to be free of malware and other malicious scripts that can harm visitors when they visit your site.

Visitors want to be safe when they visit your site. They don’t want to download malware or malicious scripts that can harm them. This is why you need to have an occasion for your theme to be free of these scripts and other harmful items.

There are many different courses of action in which you can ensure this, but here are some
craftsmanships on how to do it:

  • Run Theme Unit Tests for vulnerabilities with a reputable service provider every six months
  • Use a firewall to block any potential threats
  • Keep the theme features up-to-date and install security patches as soon as possible.
Avoid malicious code

10) The theme is not to use copyrighted images, illustrations, and other content without the author’s permission.

Copyright is the exclusive right to control the use of a work, including copying and other uses. The author of a copyrighted work has the exclusive right to control what happens to it, including who can copy it or adapt it.

The most common way of copyright infringement is taking content from another source without the author’s permission or attributing it to the original author.

It can be hard to detect copyright infringement. Still, there are some genres you can do: check for watermarks on images, check for credits in written articles, and make sure you don’t use any copyrighted content that doesn’t have an attribution link. The theme is not to use copyrighted content without the author’s permission.

Copyright Issues

11. Trademark of the theme is important

A trademark is a symbol, word, or word legally registered or act for the use as representing a company or product. A trademark may represent one of the following:

  • The brand name of a company’s products,
  • The company’s slogan,
  • The logo design for that company.

The theme is important because it will be what people associate with your business and how they view your products.

12. Copyright Violation

Please note that we do not review items for copyright or intellectual property issues; this is your responsibility, as you confirmed during the upload process. However, we are concerned that the assets used in your item may need to be properly licensed. Please review your item, identify any assets in it that are not licensed, and replace them with properly licensed assets.

No famous people or screenshots from Movies, TV Series, Video games, CD covers, or anything similar that might be infringing on any copyrights is acceptable. Please remove them from the preview image.

Please note that ThemeForest takes copyright complaints and issues very seriously. Please be aware of your obligations under our membership terms to ensure that your items do not infringe on anyone else’s intellectual property.

13. Proper Event Binding

Theme binding is a process that helps WordPress to provide a correlative user experience across all of its admin screens, front-end templates, and plugins. For example, changing the colors on your website should also update the admin interface.

Binding a theme to an event is the only way to ensure that the event continues to work with WordPress. Without this binding, your WordPress site may not work properly.

When you use a template for your site, the theme you are using must have proper event binding of the header, footer, and sidebar. This is because, in many cases, other plugins will not work right if there is no event binding.

14. Typographic Hierarchy

Typography is the plantain and technique of setting out the written language legible, readable and appealing when displayed. Hierarchy is about organizing information in a routine that makes sense to the reader.

When it comes to typography, hierarchy is an important consideration that can affect how people read your text. A website theme’s typographic hierarchy is how a designer uses font sizes, styles, and weights to convey information.

The hierarchy can be adjusted effortlessly by selecting one or more elements and rearranging their order. The font loading features below are the criteria –

  • The font should use wp_enqueue_style().
  • Weight 700 of Inconsolata should be loaded with –
  • Should have HTTP request – Example:,700|Inconsolata:700
Typographic Hierarchy

15. Spacing and Alignment

The colors, images, and graphics do not just determine the appearance of a website. Spacing and alignment of text are essential as well. For example, setting text in justified alignment creates a more formal-looking design.

Space and alignment are important considerations when designing a website. By adding enough space, your content is left open to breathe, and the reader is able to focus on what’s being said.

The spacing and alignment of your website theme are just as important as the design. When your design has too much white space, it can make your website seem blank and uninviting. In addition to this, aligning text properly on the page will help users understand what they are looking at more quickly and easily.

Spacing and Alignment

16. Line Height

Line height is the distance between two consecutive lines of text. It can be measured in pixels or points. Line height is important for readability and accessibility. It should be at least 1.5 times the size of the font size but at most three times the size of the font size. The line height should also be consistent throughout a website theme to ensure that it looks good and is easy to read.

Line Height

17. Visual Hierarchy

A website theme can be designed in a variety of ways. One way is to create a visual hierarchy. This is when one part of the site stands out as the most important, and everything else on the site is subordinated to it.

The first thing a visitor will notice on your website is your logo, so you need to have it stand out. The logo should be large and easy to read but not too large that it elevates too much space on the page. It should also have enough contrast with the background so that it’s easy for visitors to see.

The next thing visitors will notice is your navigation menus which need to stand out as well and make sense with each other. You want visitors to know where they are at all times without having to search for their location on the page. The navigation buttons should also be large enough for people who might be using a touchscreen device or using their finger instead of a mouse cursor when browsing from their phone or other devices.

Visual Hierarchy

18. Having offline documentation ensures a good website theme

Offline documentation should be a priority for any website owner. It ensures that the site is always up-to-date and functioning as intended.

For starters, offline documentation ensures that your site is up to date. This is important because the internet is a dynamic place, and things change all the time. If you don’t keep your content fresh, it can start to look outdated or unprofessional. Keeping offline documentation updated also helps you stay on top of changes in your industry to ensure that your site stays relevant to your audience’s needs.

Furthermore, offline documentation helps you monitor your theme’s performance in different browsers and devices. This will help you improve the site’s design and functionality so that it looks good on all devices, including desktop computers, tablets, smartphones, and wearable devices like smart watches or Google Glasses.

Theme documentation

19. Prefixing Third Party Scripts won’t get your theme approved on ThemeForest

Refrain from prefixing third-party scripts to get your theme approved on Themeforest. ThemeForest is a marketplace for WordPress themes and templates. The company has strict guidelines and requirements for uploads. One of them is that all third-party scripts should be loaded after the body tag in the HTML code. The reason behind this is to make sure that the theme will not break compatibility with other plugins or scripts on the site, which may interfere with its functionality.

20. TGMPA force actions should disable

The Force Actions plugin is a plugin that forces the user to take certain actions on the site. This is a common issue for ThemeForest, where the Force Actions plugin will force users to register before they can access the page. This issue can lead to potentially lost customers who are not willing to register on your website.

Every user should be able to activate or deactivate any plugins that are installed on their website. When plugins are automatically activated (or deactivated), it creates confusion. Users need to be made aware of which managed features they have on their site. They may only realize it once they’ve feat a problem later on.

This will allow you to get your theme approved on Themeforest without having any issues with plugins that force users to do things they don’t want or need in order to view content.


21. WordPress Assets

In order to properly use the wp_enqueue_style() function, you’ll need to ensure that it is being used for all stylesheets. For more information on how the function works and when to use it, refer to Themeforest’s refer to wp_enqueue_style().

The wp enqueue script () function should be used to include any third-party scripts – JavaScript code in your WordPress site. Themes can only use the scripts that ship with WordPress, including jQuery, jQuery UI, Backbone, Underscore, etc. To learn more, refer to the list of scripts included with WordPress.

Always make sure you use an SSL-friendly approach when loading assets. Assets stored in the theme directory need to use either template directory URL() or stylesheet directory URI() for the URL formation.

22. Local Copy of Libraries

Please make sure you include and use a local copy of all the files need it for the template to run correctly. All parts of your demo should look like a finished product. Example:

  • Please provide an adequate description –
  • Placeholder content should not display by default if not set by the user –
  • Themes are required to fix all issues that result in a REQUIRED notice in the Envato Theme Check plugin. There are no longer any allowable exceptions.
  • It is also strongly recommended that WARNING, RECOMMENDED, and INFO notices are resolved if possible. Some may be the result of an issue that is cause for rejection (Reviewers make this decision).
  • The Envato Theme Check plugin is a fork of the original Theme Check plugin, which has been modified to more closely match these requirements.

23. Ensure WordPress Widgets display properly

Please ensure sure all default WordPress widgets display properly in all widgetized areas. You can check with the Monster Widget WordPress plugin [].

Please update to reflect the current year

Please import the Theme Unit Test [] file and make sure that:

  • All default content is formatted properly.
  • Posts display correctly, with no apparent visual problems or errors.
  • Posts display in the correct order.
  • Page navigation displays and works correctly.
  • As “sticky posts” are a core feature, the theme should style and display them appropriately.
  • Lack of body text should not adversely impact the layout.
  • Theme must swallow up both the “Tag” and the “Category” taxonomies in some manner.
  • Floats are cleared properly for floated elements (thumbnail image) at the end of the post content.
WordPress Widgets

Reference link:

24. All theme text strings are to be properly escaped

Please ensure the .POT translation file is up to date. Having an outdated.POT file limits the translatable functionality of your theme, which will negatively affect international customers. The localization portfolio should be in English and take around as a .pot file. The .pot will contain all translation strings. The .pot file name should match the theme slug (i.e., theme slug. pot).

Themes can include actual translation files (.po / .mo) for any variety of specific languages but must not add the or en_US.PO because English is already implied.

25. Logo looks blurry on HiDPI displays

No blurry logos should be on HIDpi displays

HIDpi is a screen resolution designed for modern smartphones and other devices. These displays have a high pixel density, making logos and images appear clear. HIDpi displays are becoming the latest trend in the world of technology. These displays are perfect for those with visual impairments, as they have a resolution of 3200 x 1800 pixels which is much clearer than other resolutions available.

The theme logos should be clear on HIDpi displays to show images crisply. These displays can show images on a pixel-by-pixel level regardless of the size of the image.

In contrast, HIDpi displays do not display blurriness or pixelation, unlike other HD and HDPI displays.

HiDPI displays compatibility

Additional criteria to get your theme approved on ThemeForest

  • Meta info -> date format check
  • Spacing alignment check (depends on your design)
  • Default menu check
  • Footer/sidebar widget check to use monster widget
  • Comment reply spacing alignment check
  • Unit test demo data blog tag, sidebar, widget check
  • There should always be a space after a colon “: “
  • Check the blog streaky pin icon that shows properly
  • The bullet must be properly centered
  • It is also strongly recommended that WARNING, RECOMMENDED, and INFO notices are resolved if possible. Some may be the result of an issue that is cause for rejection (Reviewers make this decision).
  • Please ensure sure all default WordPress widgets display properly in all widgetized areas. You can check with the Monster Widget WordPress plugin.
  • Please update to reflect the current year.

Not to miss things to get your theme approved on ThemeForest

Please import the Theme Unit Test file from and make sure that:

  • All default content is formatted properly.
  • Posts display correctly, with no apparent visual problems or errors.
  • Posts display in the correct order.
  • Page navigation displays and works correctly.
  • As “sticky posts” are a core feature, the theme should style and display them appropriately.
  • Lack of body text should not adversely impact the layout.
  • Theme must swallow up both the “Tag” and the “Category” taxonomies in some manner.
  • Floats are cleared properly for floated elements (thumbnail image) at the termination of the post content.

Easy testing with block unit test

You can use this for easier testing:

  • Check the coop class name
  • Check to comment
  • Remove empty file
  • Remove unnecessary files
  • Remove commenting code
  • Sanitization check
  • Text domain check
  • Console error
  • Pot file generate
  • Validation check
  • Use the correct escaping function for the context where it’s rendered. Example, attributes should use esc_attr(), esc_attr__() or esc_attr_e()
  • All theme text strings are to be translatable and properly escaped.
Theme Unit Test

More on prefixing the theme for Themeforest

A unique prefix must be used for all function names, classes, hooks, public/global variables, action/filter hooks, custom image sizes, constants, database entries, theme-specific scripts, and theme-specific styles to avoid conflicts with plugins and other themes.

Prefixes should consist of either themename_, authorname_, or frameworkname_. While multiple prefixes are allowed (theme-specific, framework, and external PHP libraries), they must be consistent, at least three characters, and unique (i.e., not using a common term such as ‘SEO’). For more information, refer to Prefix all the things article:

If you are looking for more on theme development, read this article on WordPress block theme development.


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