OceanWP vs Astra vs GeneratePress: Which is Right for You?

Struggling to choose between OceanWP vs Astra vs GeneratePress?

If you're planning to build a WordPress site with Elementor or another page builder, I can guarantee that you've come across these three themes.

However, because they have a lot of core similarities, it can be tough to know which option is the best for your site.

Overall, all three are high-quality themes, so you're not going to make a “wrong” decision. However, there are some differences that might make one theme better than the others for your specific needs.

In this post, I'll try to help you find those differences by comparing each theme's:

  • Performance in some real page speed tests
  • Page builder integration
  • Customization options
  • WooCommerce support (and other integrations, if applicable)
  • Importable demo site options
  • Pricing and premium content

Here's your OceanWP vs Astra vs GeneratePress comparison…

A Quick Introduction to These Three WordPress Themes…

Before I get to the more detailed comparison, let me give you a quick introduction to each theme in case you're not familiar with all of these options.

Astra

Astra

Astra is a popular multipurpose theme from Brainstorm Force, who also makes other popular plugins like Ultimate Addons for Elementor/Beaver Builder, Convert Pro, plus a bunch of other plugins.

It's performance optimized, integrates perfectly with Elementor, comes with tons of importable demo sites, and has integrations for WooCommerce and some popular LMS plugins.

At WordPress.org, Astra is active on 300,000+ sites with a 5-star rating on over 1,750 reviews.

GeneratePress

GeneratePress

While all of these themes load quickly, GeneratePress is the most lightweight option on the list, weighing in at under 30KB and with no dependencies on jQuery.

It has clean code throughout, supports WooCommerce, gives you tons of options in the WordPress Customizer, and offers plenty of hooks if you want to go more hands-on with your customizations.

At WordPress.org, GeneratePress is active on 100,000+ sites with a 5-star rating on over 800 reviews.

OceanWP

OceanWP

Of these three themes, OceanWP isn't quite as focused on performance (though it's still more optimized than your average theme). Instead, it's a little bit more focused on design and content flexibility, with add-ons for features like:

  • Instagram feeds
  • Popup login
  • Sticky content
  • A filterable portfolio
  • Etc.

Additionally, I'd say that in terms of the overall number of customization options that you get, OceanWP is probably the winner. It just gives you so many options for creating pretty much any type of website.

At WordPress.org, OceanWP is active on 300,000+ sites with a 5-star rating on over 2,200 reviews.

OceanWP vs Astra vs GeneratePress: Speed Comparison

Let's start with the big one – performance.

While all three of these themes are lightweight, I'd say that Astra and GeneratePress are the most focused on performance, and you can see this borne out in my actual test data below.

To test these themes, I installed all of them at my test WordPress site powered by a $5 per month DigitalOcean droplet.

To make this test as fair as possible, I'm going to use each theme with its default configuration (as installed from WordPress.org).

This won't perfectly mimic a real-world situation because you'll probably do a lot of customization on a live site. But it should give you an idea of how optimized each theme's foundation is.

To gather this test data, I used WebPageTest and had it run 9 separate tests and take the median value. You can click on the links in the table to view the full WebPageTest results:

Theme

Med. Load Time* (s)

Med. Speed Index* (s)

Mean Load Time (s)

Page Size (KB)

Requests

Astra

0.506

0.501

0.716

36

9

GeneratePress

0.620

0.601

0.657

27

11

OceanWP

0.874

0.702

0.969

233

19

*The median result of 9 separate speed tests.

Essentially, if performance is of utmost importance to you, Astra or GeneratePress are going to be your best options. With that being said, OceanWP is by no means slow, and it's still more optimized than your average WordPress theme.

Additionally, OceanWP gives you the ability to disable scripts, so you have options for further improving its performance, if you'd like.

Comparing the Elementor Integration (Or Other Page Builder)

As I mentioned in the beginning, all three of these themes work great when paired with Elementor or another WordPress page builder plugin.

By “integration”, I mainly mean page-level settings that let you control the canvas for your Elementor designs.

For example, you might want to be able to disable the page title for certain pieces of content so that you can use Elementor instead. Or, you might want to use a full-width template instead of your regular boxed design.

In the free versions, Astra and OceanWP give you the most control with respect to your Elementor canvas. But if you go Pro, GeneratePress is right up there (and even the free version of GeneratePress includes most of what you'll need).

Here's how each theme handles these features…

Astra

Astra gives you detailed page-level controls that let you:

  • Choose which side to have a sidebar on, or disable the sidebar
  • Change the page width – boxed, content boxed, full-width contained, or full-width stretch
  • Disable specific content, like the header, title, featured image, footer, or breadcrumbs
  • Enable/disable the transparent header

Astra Elementor integration

GeneratePress

GeneratePress adds a dedicated Layout meta box to posts and pages that let you control all of the pertinent settings for Elementor. You can:

  • Choose different layouts and sidebar arrangements
  • Change or disable the number of footer widgets
  • Disable specific elements. The free version only lets you disable the post title, but the premium version adds support for a lot more.
  • Choose between a full-width or contained layout

GeneratePress Elementor integration

OceanWP

With the free OceanWP Extras companion plugin installed, you get a super detailed meta box that lets you control every aspect of your post, from the basic layout all the way down to the logo that you use on each individual page.

Beyond just plain having lots of options, you have all the important stuff for Elementor, including:

  • An option to change sidebars and use a full-width or boxed layout
  • Ability to disable the header, page title, breadcrumbs, footer, and other elements that might get in the way of your Elementor design

OceanWP Elementor integration

Comparing the Customization Options

Beyond the Elementor integration, all three of these themes give you detailed options in the WordPress Customizer that let you control how your site looks.

Beyond helping you control the layout, style, and functionality of your site, these settings can also help with Elementor by letting you control the global styles that Elementor inherits (if you disable Elementor's own styling).

Unfortunately, it's impossible to show you every single option because all of these themes come packed with Customizer controls, so I think it might be more helpful to just share my thoughts via text instead of trying to give you screenshots of the WordPress Customizer, especially because the options vary depending on which extensions you have active.

In general, I'd say the theme with the absolute most customization options is OceanWP. After that, Astra would be next (and not far behind), with GeneratePress a bit behind Astra.

And remember – all three have way more customizations than your average WordPress theme.

WooCommerce Support & Other Notable Integrations

All three of these themes offer dedicated integrations for WooCommerce, with new WooCommerce-specific options in the WordPress Customizer to help you control your product pages, shopping cart functionality, and other important WooCommerce settings.

Below, I'll compare the WooCommerce options that you get with each theme. As with customization options, I'd say OceanWP again has a slight edge in terms of the sheer amount of control you have, with Astra right behind it (they're both really good when it comes to WooCommerce).

Beyond that, Astra also offers dedicated integrations for two popular WordPress LMS pluginsLearnDash and LifterLMS. So if you're planning to build an online course, that might be a reason to choose Astra over the others.

Astra

Astra includes built-in WooCommerce support with some nice options like:

  • A dropdown cart (GIF below)
  • Off-canvas sidebar for product search and filter options
  • An option to enable product quick view without the need for a plugin
  • Two-step or distraction-free checkout, which you can enable with the check of a box in the Customizer
  • A “bubble” indicator for sale products
  • Customizer options to control your product catalog

Astra WooCommerce integration

Basically, your store will have a slick, conversion-optimized UI from day one, and without the need for external plugins.

Finally, as I mentioned above, Astra also includes dedicated integrations for two popular LMS plugins – LifterLMS and LearnDash. If you're using one of those plugins, you'll be able to make important layout and functionality choices for your courses right from the WordPress Customizer.

For example, you can enable distraction-free learning and checkout, or offer a course progress indicator.

So if you're building a site to sell online courses, Astra is probably the best option for you.

GeneratePress

In the premium version, GeneratePress offers a dedicated WooCommerce module that lets you use the real-time Customizer to control important WooCommerce functionality like:

  • Adding a shopping cart icon to your menu, including that nice dropdown effect to let people see what's in their carts without leaving the page
  • Changing how your product archive pages look
  • Adding a nice AJAX add to cart button, with a sticky panel at the top of the page
  • Controlling all the styles for your WooCommerce content
  • A distraction-free checkout mode
  • Controlling whether to show upsells or related products

You can see a full demo of all the functionality in this Vimeo video:

OceanWP

OceanWP comes packed with a ton of options for building a WooCommerce store. Some of the biggest features are:

  • Product quick view
  • Dropdown cart, including a great responsive implementation for mobile visitors
  • Option to highlight the product in cart after a shopper adds an item to their cart (example below)
  • Off-canvas menu for product search and filter options
  • A floating bar that includes an add to cart button (this appears as users scroll down a product page)
  • Sales badges
  • Distraction-free checkout and/or multi-step checkout options
  • Dedicated styling for the native WooCommerce category and filter widgets

OceanWP WooCommerce integration

As I mentioned, I'd say that, overall, OceanWP has a slight edge in terms of the sheer number of WooCommerce options.

Comparing the Importable Demo Sites

All three of these themes offer importable demo sites, but only Astra and OceanWP give you access to demo sites for free (though most of the demo sites require the premium version).

If you use GeneratePress, you'll need to purchase the premium version to import demo sites.

Additionally, another thing to note is that, if you want access to the Astra premium site templates, you'll need to purchase the Agency Bundle, which starts at $169. Both OceanWP and GeneratePress give you the premium site library with a regular theme license, which is more affordable.

Astra

OceanWP demo sites

Astra offers a large collection of demo sites built with your choice of four different tools/page builders:

  • Elementor – the Elementor collection has the largest variety.
  • Beaver Builder
  • Gutenberg
  • Brizy

If you're using Brizy or Beaver Builder, that's an attractive feature in Astra because the two other themes rely mostly on Elementor.

These demo sites are divided into a variety of niches, which helps you find a good starting point no matter what type of site you're building.

Even for free, you get access to a whopping 40+ importable demo sites. And if you pay for the Agency bundle, you'll get access to another ~50 demo sites.

Long story short, you have a ton of options! You can browse the full collection here.

GeneratePress

GeneratePress demo sites

Though GeneratePress has been working on expanding its site library, I still don't think it's quite up to par with Astra and OceanWP yet.

At the time that I'm writing this, you get 30+ importable demo sites. Some are built with no page builder, while others rely on Elementor or Beaver Builder.

You'll also find more general-purpose themes, rather than the niche approach that Astra uses (though GeneratePress does still offer some niche templates).

You can browse the full template library here. And as I mentioned, these demo sites are only available if you purchase the premium version – there are no free pre-built demo sites.

OceanWP

OceanWP demo sites

OceanWP offers 70+ importable demo sites. Of these, ~13 of them are available for free, while the remaining ~60 are only available if you purchase a premium license.

Like Astra, you'll find a lot of niche-targeted demo sites. For example, there's a demo site for weddings, and another one for bakeries. Overall, the demos are pretty detailed and look great. You can browse all the demos here.

Most/all of the demo sites are built with Elementor, so that might be something to consider if you prefer another page builder.

Astra is really the only one that offers demo sites for other page builders, though GeneratePress does have a few Beaver Builder offerings.

Comparing the Pricing and Premium Functionality

All three of these themes offer a free core version at WordPress.org. Then, you can opt for the premium version to tack on extra functionality.

Of the three, GeneratePress is the most affordable if you're using it on multiple sites, and OceanWP is the most affordable if you just want to use it on a single site, though the difference isn't big between any of them.

Additionally, all three themes offer a renewal discount if you want to continue receiving support/updates after the first year, with GeneratePress offering the most generous discount (40%).

Astra

GeneratePress

OceanWP

Price

$59*

$49.95

$39

Unlimited sites?

❌ ($129 for unlimited)

Renewal discount?

20%

40%

30%

*Remember – you need the Agency plan to import the premium demo sites, which is more expensive.

Below, I'll go through exactly what comes in the premium version of each theme.

Astra

When you purchase Astra Pro, you'll get access to a companion plugin that unlocks a set of new functionality. All of this functionality is modular, which means you can enable or disable it as needed:

  • Nav Menu
  • White Label
  • Blog Layouts
  • Site Layouts
  • WooCommerce
  • Sticky Header
  • Page Headers
  • More Color Controls
  • Better Typography
  • Custom Layouts
  • Scroll to Top Link
  • Footer Widget
  • Header Sections
  • More Header Designs
  • Spacing Control
  • LearnDash and LifterLMS Integrations

And if you purchase the Agency Bundle – starting at $169 – you'll also get access to all the premium demo sites. The Agency Bundle also gives you access to some or all of Brainstorm Force's other products, which offers great value if you'll use those other tools (you'll need the full $249 plan for access to all the plugins).

GeneratePress

When you purchase GeneratePress Premium, you get access to the companion GeneratePress Premium plugin, as well as the full pre-built site library.

This plugin adds a modular set of new features that you can enable or disable as desired:

  • Colors
  • Typography
  • Elements
  • WooCommerce
  • Menu Plus
  • Spacing
  • Blog
  • Secondary Nav
  • Backgrounds
  • Sections
  • Disable Elements
  • Copyright

OceanWP

Paying for OceanWP gets you access to all of the premium extensions, as well as all of the pre-built demo sites.

Currently, there are 13 premium extensions:

  1. Full Screen
  2. Cookie Notice
  3. Popup Login
  4. Instagram
  5. White Label
  6. Portfolio
  7. Woo Popup
  8. Sticky Footer
  9. Ocean Hooks
  10. Elementor Widgets
  11. Side Panel
  12. Sticky Header
  13. Footer Callout

Final Thoughts on Astra vs GeneratePress vs OceanWP

When it comes to Astra vs GeneratePress vs OceanWP, there's really no single winner.

As I mentioned at the beginning, all three of these themes are great options, and you certainly won't go wrong with any of them.

However, there are some small differences that might nudge you in one way or another:

  • OceanWP leads the pack when it comes to design options and flexibility, though the other two are by no means lacking.
  • Astra and GeneratePress are a little more lightweight and performance optimized, at least out of the box. Though again, OceanWP is by no means “bad” when it comes to performance, and you can use the script management feature to make it more lightweight.
  • Astra has some unique integrations, like those for LifterLMS and LearnDash, that the others don't offer. If you'll use those integrations, that's a big point in its favor.
  • GeneratePress' public support forum is an awesome resource, even if you're just using the free version of the theme. You can find so many helpful tips and tweaks, though Astra and OceanWP also have stellar support systems.

Now over to you – what are your thoughts on Astra, GeneratePress, or OceanWP? Which is your favorite? Do you use one theme for every project, or do you switch between them based on the site? I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

Colin Newcomer

Colin Newcomer is a freelance writer for hire with a background in SEO and affiliate marketing. He helps clients grow their web visibility by writing primarily about digital marketing and WordPress. You can hire him to write for your website.
Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning that if you click on one of the links and purchase an item, we may receive a commission. All opinions however are our own and we do not accept payments for positive reviews.

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