In this Astra theme review, I will be dissecting all features and options this popular theme offers. A website is like an interview. It takes roughly 7 seconds for an employer to look at you or your resume to know if they are going to hire you, regardless of what information comes out. The first step to being successful is appearance and presentation. The same goes for your website. Using Astra theme is the same as dressing up and looking presentable for an interview.
Your audience is your interviewer, and it is your job to make sure your website passes.
Despite the countless paid & free WordPress themes available on the market and the hundreds of agencies offering design services, picking up the right theme for your new, or already working website is a daunting task.
You have so many themes to choose from that your choice always seems wrong no matter what you select.
Usually, when you find a theme you like, you check the demo, ask the person who built the theme a couple of question, and you proceed with the purchase. Here’s where it gets complicated. Most of the times, the demo you previously saw is way different from what’s happening in reality.
You hoped for a clean and easy to use the theme, but you got a slow and theme full of options which you will never use. Astra theme can be a solution for different websites mainly because it offers a lot of different templates and layouts.
You can use the theme for your blog, eCommerce needs, as the company website, for a small agency, local business, etc. Astra is fully customizable, and you can change every little pixel to fit your needs.
Astra Theme Review
Astra is a theme for WordPress that combines speed, style, and customizable options for a user’s website preferences. Astra can be used for business sites, blogs, portfolios, biographies, WooCommerce storefronts, restaurants, etc.
It contains websites with pre-built pages that saves you time so you can put it towards other parts of your website. Demo designs can be customized easily without using code. The customizable options in Astra are incredible.
You can build a website to your liking, even taking away page titles, sidebars, or modifying the width of your page. What makes Astra stand out compared to other themes is the speed. Its speed is so lightweight that it is superior to other themes in the market.
Astra comes with pre-built SEO components, and you can manage the layout of the header, archives, pages, footer, sidebar, posts, blogs, etc. You can set your colors, fonts, content, and even meta. Astra WordPress theme has no jQuery.
Pingdom gave Astra a speed grade of 100 percent, whereas Google DEV gave it a 95 percent and YSlow gave it 91 percent (according to data Astra team provided).
Astra integrates WooCommerce seamlessly, which is highly beneficial to everyone who wishes to build their online store (see best WooCommerce plugins). It provides a plethora of unique features that can transform your idea of your brand into a reality.
What Is Astra Pro?
Astra is a WordPress theme available for free from the WordPress repository. Astra Pro is the premium add-on available for Astra theme. The pro version contains additional functionality and customization options.
Astra has another plugin which compliments Astra Pro called Astra Sites. Astra Sites offer a selection of premade websites complete with working pages and graphics ready to go.
Astra is a lightweight, fast WordPress theme which offers several customization features in the free theme.
The Astra Pro add-on is installed separately and extends the theme options adding features such as transparent headers, custom layouts and much more.
It offers more advanced features which help to build and customize your website in a unique manner even without having to change or add a single piece of code. Though it offers many advanced features, each feature is given as a separate module.
You can choose to activate which features you want, and other features would remain deactivated thereby making it less complicated and saves loading time. Using lesser features also adds to the performance of your theme. You can also extend the Astra theme with free plugins.
Astra Theme Features
Fonts and typography are one of the items that people want to control fully. With 700+ Google fonts being fully-integrated and a free Custom Fonts plugin, there is no shortage of fonts to choose from.
It is easy to control typography size by the device to enable full responsiveness, with plenty of additional transformations options such as Text Transform for headings, the font size in PX or EM as you prefer, and other typography options.
Site layouts can be enabled through a feature of Astra Pro, which gives the end user the option to choose from Boxed, Full Width, Max Width, Padded and Fluid layouts. Spacing can also be adjusted to suit the needs of the user using margins and paddings around elements.
If the site you’re planning will also focus on blogs or content marketing, the configurations of the look and feel of your posts are going to be important. In Astra Pro you have a grid, masonry, list blog layouts, date box, excerpt, infinite scrolling, and post pagination are also built-in.
With Quick View, your customers can preview your products without opening a new page to avoid cookies and speed reductions, while still getting a good view of your product information.
Widget Optimized tool works hand-in-hand with the sidebars and helps you optimize your page by using a simple “drag and drop” function to add variations to the filters in your sidebars.
Using Infinite Scroll visitors can load products as they scroll down and experience your showcase dynamically.
Make your display look organized by choosing a grid layout and control how many columns, rows, and buttons you would like.
Off-Canvas Sidebar is perfect for shopping. Here, you can install filters so that your users can quickly find what they are looking for and improve their experience overall.
This sidebar hides after you’re done selecting it, to increase what the user can see while shopping. Dedicated Sidebars are for the users who like to constantly see what filters they can, and have, applied to. This can boost user engagement, and boost single pages.
With Gallery Options visitors can see product images zoomed in and can scroll around to adjust their view both vertically and horizontally while looking at the options to the side.
With Dropdown Cart shoppers can quickly see what is in their cart and items’ summary without checking out or removing them from their cart.
Sales Bubble Style is used solely for style and entertainment. Users love using trendy bubbles where you can customize your products in a fun way that boosts sales.
Product Catalog helps you filter just like a sidebar, but it adds categories that exclude certain items, so they aren’t looking through a long list of products when they are looking for something specific.
Various header and footer customizations options are available, which can also be extended if you purchase Pro add-on.
Given that any site you create needs to conform to your brand colors, the Astra theme is entirely flexible and customizable when it comes to setting colors options.
Headers, content, pages, archives, blogs, sidebars and footers are all completely configurable, although, for some details and subtle tweaks, you’ll have to opt for the PRO version.
In terms of other design options, the Astra theme also provides plenty of flexibility. The brand’s logo can be left-aligned, centered, or right-aligned and there are different layouts you can use for the footer.
Astra Pro also allows customizations of the mobile device-specific headers, headers, layouts and the custom code above and/or below the content and plenty of other customization options.
An important feature which most sites will require these days is full WooCommerce-integration.
Grid layouts for products, infinite scrolling, off-canvas sidebar which can be triggered at the click of a button, a quick view option for product images, various gallery options, a drop-down shopping cart, and other neat integrations are all provided in Astra theme.
Page builders have been the latest craze for quite some time now. Astra integrates and works seamlessly with any WordPress page builder. Elementor , Divi , Beaver Builder , Visual Composer , Thrive Architect , Gutenberg, Brizy are all compatible to work with Astra theme.
Astra comes with pre-made templates explicitly made for Elementor and Beaver Builder and more templates for Brizy page builder are coming soon. Also, developers of Astra theme have made Ultimate addons for Elementor which is great collection of elements for Elementor and Ultimate addons for Beaver Builder which consists of additional Beaver Builder widgets.
Pre-made website templates are something which every agency and website creator wants. Astra comes with a wide range of pre-built website templates for almost every purpose and business.
Templates help you in saving a lot of time as you don’t have to create a site from scratch. Just import a demo website, and put your content in it.
All of the sites that you build with Astra will be Guttenberg ready. Astra works great with LearnDash and LifterLMS. LifterLMS integration and LearnDash integration will give you several design options and features that focus more on providing a better learning experience.
Those are just a couple of features that are possible with Astra theme.
What’s The Difference Between Astra Free And Astra Pro?
The Astra theme comes in two versions. The free version is downloadable from the WordPress.org directory and very limited in options it provides. The Astra Pro addon adds many more features and modules so you can customize your website without limitations.
ASTRA FREE THEME VS ASTRA PRO
Astra PRO Pricing
Astra Pro costs $59 annually, but you can also purchase lifetime package for $249. Want even more? There are two other pricing plans that you can get through Astra called the Mini Agency Bundle and the Agency Bundle.
The Mini Agency Bundle includes all of the features in the Astra Pro plan, 50+ ready-made starter sites along with a WP Portfolio Plugin (see WP Portfolio review), and a choice of one page Builder Addon.
You can choose between Ultimate Addons for Elementor or Ultimate Addons for Beaver Builder. This plan costs $169 if you decide to pay annually or lifetime package for $499.
The Agency Bundle includes all from previous plans plus (and WP Portfolio plugin, Ultimate Addons for both Beaver Builder and Elementor) but also a Convert Pro (see Convert Pro review), Schema Pro (see Schema Pro review), and all future plugins made. This costs $249 annually or a lifetime fee of $699.
Astra Pro vs Astra Agency
Check Astra pro vs Astra agency comparison for more info regarding differences between those pricing plans.
Astra Theme Review Final Words
Hopefully, this Astra theme review has cleared you doubts regarding Astra theme and youare now aware of everything this WordPress theme offers.
If you’re looking for an easily accessible and customizable WordPress theme, you can’t go wrong with Astra. SEO friendly and ready for all Page Builders, this theme is perfect if you don’t want to be bothered with advanced site building.
Astra theme will give you everything you need, and more. Customize its layout, shift between different header options, edit colors, backgrounds, etc.
The theme is widget-friendly, with up to four areas to place them, and integrated with Toolset for more customization. Its powerful Add-on pack offers even more options. Compatible with WooCommerce and lots of other plugins, it’ll make your life easier.
Astra is very fast, with a loading speed of around half a second. It’s designed to be simple, but still offers many different options to customize the website.
Astra Starter Sites plugin gives you the opportunity to use various pre-made templates and adapt them to your business. Its compatibility with page builders means you can do everything with little effort and no HTML knowledge.
If there’s a bad side to this theme, it’s the fact that you’ll have to pay more if you want to gain full access to all it has to offer. However, Astra Pro comes at a reasonable price, and it will give you so many options.