Is There A Lack Of Good Theme Reviewers at WordPress?

WordPress is one of the most successful CMS ever made, and there is no doubt that.

But what made WordPress so successful that even the 2nd most popular CMS is not even close to the competition. Of course, the free availability of WordPress with GPL, and most importantly the out of box volunteered support of the WordPress users including developers and reviewers.

The question that I want to put forward today is that – Is there a lack of good theme reviewers at WordPress? (Both in numbers and quality)

To me it certainly seems so if you look at the support forums and review stacks. Here is a screenshot that I took from WordPress review stack.


If you just look at the top most theme (Its not mine though) in the list waiting for getting live. You might be amazed to see that it has been stranded in the queue for more than 5 weeks now.

Even my own theme is stranded in the queue for almost 3 weeks after getting approved.

What’s more astonishing to notice is that its just not 5 weeks but if you also count the date when theme was uploaded for review, it has been waiting getting live for 3 months now.


Long story short, the gist of the story comes up as this

8 weeks to get theme approved + 5 weeks wait in live queue = 13 weeks and still waiting.

That sums up that if you want to publish your free theme on WordPress, the whole process is going to cost you not less than 3-4 months.

It may even take much more time than this if there is a new code review guidelines issued for developers that WordPress issues on a regular basis. In that case, you will again be required to update your theme to new standards before it can get approved.

I know the approval process at ThemeForest is a long process but why at WordPress?


I don’t want to end this with concluding that WordPress lacks good reviewers but yes it certainly requires more head counts working as reviewers.

I have been working with WordPress for last 4 years, and I certainly want it to reach more heights.

With this article, my only intention is to put a silent voice in the ears of my senior WordPress members and mates working day and night tirelessly at WordPress support.

An ordinary theme taking more taking 3-4 months on an average to get approved and live is certainly a matter of concern which should be looked upon by the WordPress community.

The ugly truth is that WordPress community can’t force anyone to became a volunteer; it is on the free will of the developer only to offer active theme reviews.

Please signup here if you would like to contribute to theme review process.

2 thoughts on “Is There A Lack Of Good Theme Reviewers at WordPress?”

  1. All the theme review team can do is continue to ask community members to get involved, especially those that are submitting themes to the repository themselves … think of it as paying it forward.

    As you review theme in queue ahead of your own the faster your theme will be seen by another reviewer.

  2. The keyword is “volunteer”. We have a lot of reviewers, but it’s easy to get burnt out pretty quickly. Spend some time reviewing themes to see what I mean.

    I honestly don’t see this as a review issue though. I see this as a quality code issue. Believe it or not, with all the work we’ve put into the review guidelines, Theme Check plugin (plus other tools), and educating theme authors on issues, we still get themes with massive amounts of issues. I’m not just talking three or four minor things. I’m talking 50+ major issues that need to be worked out. Add to that having to deal with spammy themes or people trying to game the system in some way and you’ve got a recipe for a slow process. I also see theme authors submit new themes with the exact same issues they had when we reviewed a previous theme of theirs.

    A large part of this is that themes have gotten way too complex. A lot of that has to do with people adding theme options who really don’t understand the code that they’re putting into their themes (lots of copy/paste stuff). Sure, we’ve always had the same coding issues in the past. It’s just that now things are so much more epic in nature that it’s impossible to keep up.

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