Get the discussion started.
Your site can be a hub for conversation and engagement. All you need are the tools to build a forum and design to cultivate that participation.
In this list, you’ll find 9 of the best WordPress themes for creating a forum. They integrate with robust forum plugins that let members register, share on the forums, message each other directly, and much more.
Keep reading now to find the top themes for starting a forum with WordPress.
WordPress Forum Themes
Each of these themes runs well with the latest version of WordPress and are completely responsive (mobile-friendly). Use them for discussion forums or social networks in any niche.
1. ForumEngine by EngineThemes
If you want a forum theme your visitors will love, you can’t beat ForumEngine. With a customizable and fully responsive design, this theme looks great on laptops and mobile devices.
Beyond threads and replies, ForumEngine also includes a badge system and live notifications. As users scroll through topics, new topics autoload to keep the conversation flowing.
2. Vilan by disgogo (Themeforest)
Vilan is a modern and stylish WordPress theme for forums. Complete with bbPress compatibility, custom colors, and multiple layout modes, Vilan is a theme you can customize extensively.
The Vilan forum theme features a fullscreen slider with the use of Slider Revolution and comes with Visual Composer for building unique page templates. If that’s not enough, you can also integrate a store with the use of WooCommerce.
3. QAEngine by EngineThemes
QAEngine is a highly robust theme for creating a Q&A site. This beautifully designed theme lets users ask and answers questions, vote on replies, and collect badges for participation.
As a community theme, QAEngine excels by making it easy and intuitive to find and answer questions. Give expert users special privileges, such as question editing and voting to further encourage engagement.
If you’re looking for an easy way to monetize your site, QAEngine lets you charge users to push their question to the top of the list and integrates with major payment processors like PayPal and Stripe.
4. Socialize by GhostPool (Themeforest)
Socialize is not just a forum theme but a full-featured community theme. It emphasizes posts and published content on the homepage, while still hosting forums and discussion groups.
Members have robust profiles thanks to the BuddyPress integration. The classic forum design is easy to use and will be familiar to any regular forum posters.
5. CommunityJunction by Diabolique (Themeforest)
The CommunityJunction WordPress forum theme integrates with bbPress and BuddyPress. Let users communicate over the message board, send private messages, and share their activity.
Integration with WooCommerce means you can sell digital or physical goods from your site too. This theme is excellent for getting members engaged in groups around niches and specific discussion topics.
6. Answers by Templatic
While Answers is not a typical forum theme, it’s an excellent choice for sparking discussion on your site. The question-and-answer format is ideal for helping your community learn about various topics.
Since Answers is search engine optimized, you can grow your traffic with user-generated content on autopilot. As in Yahoo Answers and Stack Overflow, users can vote on replies, and the “asker” can select the best answer.
7. Thrive by dunhakdis (Themeforest)
Thrive is a feature-rich community WordPress theme. With bbPress integration, Thrive makes it easy to create beautiful and responsive forums.
This theme also has BuddyPress integration allowing members to message each other, publish activity feeds, and receive live notifications. Thrive is bundled with Slider Revolution and Visual Composer for building responsive sliders and custom page layouts.
8. OneCommunity by Diabolique (Themeforest)
OneCommunity has both BuddyPress and bbPress integration, so members can post on the forum and share their activity on the site. It’s well-designed for creating discussion and engagement.
OneCommunity also comes with Advanced Ajax Search. This means members can get instant results as they search the forums. Publish a blog and create member groups to keep the engagement going beyond the forums.
9. PlusOne by Templatic
PlusOne takes a different approach to the community site. Rather than a classic forum design, this WP theme recreates a reddit-like interface for browsing and voting on links.
Users can publish images or articles and discuss each in detail. PlusOne also comes with 30 shortcodes for adding advanced content into posts, pages, and user submissions.
Which forum theme is right for you?
You probably noticed that bbPress is the king of forum plugins. And for a good reason, it’s been in development for over a decade.
While there are other excellent forum plugins, full integration with a theme is less likely. That could mean certain elements not displaying or simply not fitting in with the site’s aesthetic.
These themes are complete packages for creating and managing forums on WordPress.
Have any questions about these themes or setting up a WordPress site? Leave a comment below.