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We recently updated our Bluehost-Certified theme requirements to add some helpful new guidelines for customers choosing a theme and for the authors who create them. Check them all out as a refresher (asterisks indicate updates). 

Not sure how to find certified themes? Use the filter on the Marketplace themes search page. It works across all categories to show you which themes have been vetted by the following guidelines.

What Makes a Theme Bluehost-Certified?

Design quality and theme functionality:

  • Theme’s overall design quality are reviewed by the Bluehost Marketplace Team as a factor in determining eligibility (e.g., overall style, typography, design, colors, visual hierarchy, etc.).
  • Item demo content must appear to be displayed correctly with no apparent visual problems.
  • All expected components (title, body, comments, comment form, post meta, etc.) must be rendered correctly.
  • Page navigation for demo content should be free of broken links.
  • Must have a responsive layout (mobile-friendly).
  • Must be compatible across all browsers.

Note: We generally require support for the two latest major versions of the primary browsers, such as Chrome and Safari.

Quick and easy theme installation:

  • Theme includes downloadable demo content layouts that simplify site design and setup.
  • Upon installation, theme demo files and content should display actual images or placeholders for all demos in order to accurately demonstrate any content presented in the demo link(s).
  • Demo installation should be simple. One-click demos are highly preferred and recommended, though not required.
  • Should include well-documented theme and demo installation instructions.

Note: Demo content (images, site copy, etc.) is intended to be used for demonstration purposes of theme layouts or components, and not for publishing or to replace actual site owner content.

Responsive support:

  • Support must respond within 24-48 hours Monday-Friday. Please be aware that holidays may impact response times.

Accurate, appropriate, and complete item descriptions:

  • Description of demo layouts must be included with the theme.
  • Disclosure of image licensing.
  • Suggested plugins should be listed in the item description.
  • Appropriate disclosure of key theme features.
  • Free of grammatical errors or confusing language.

Regular version updates:

  • Updates adhere to industry standards/best practices.
  • Theme files must be compatible with the two most recent major versions of WordPress and PHP.
  • Child theme is included/supported with theme purchase.
  • Theme is compatible with the Gutenberg editor.
  • Plugins suggested by a theme need to be up-to-date.
  • Bluehost reserves the right to assess a theme’s overall site performance (e.g., page load and speed index) as a factor in determining eligibility.

New Requirements

The Marketplace features over 800 exciting themes to choose from, including a selection of Bluehost-Certified themes. We encourage you to browse as many as you are able. If a theme you prefer is not listed yet as certified, just make sure it has the key features you need—it’s possible that the theme has simply not been submitted for Bluehost review. Happy browsing!

Side note for sellers: Sellers interested in becoming Bluehost Certified can reach out to Samantha Dean at [email protected].

Learn more about Bluehost Editorial Guidelines

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