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WordPress Custom Templating: Must-Have Website Templates to Setup

Authored by: Mohammed Wasim Akram
Last Updated on: March 21, 2022
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If you're habituated to build WordPress websites using ready to use themes and recently come across using Oxygen builder then it's time to admit that Oxygen completely disables the theme.

Therefore if you are struggling to understand how to build a website if there is no theme available to use, then I would like to inform you that there is a thing called template builder also known as theme builder which Oxygen provides as the replacement of a theme.

This theme builder is a very powerful tool as it can help you to set up all the necessary fully custom templates for your website.

Although a WordPress theme usually has all the required templates built-in it yet they are not as customizable and powerful as the Oxygen template builder.

But the problem is that most of the time we as a beginner don't even know what are the must-have templates that we should be setting up using Oxygen template builder for a perfect website.

Hence in this post, I am going to help you understand with my personal experiences that what are the must-have templates you should set up while using Oxygen to build a website.

Main AKA Header & Footer Template

This is the main and very crucial template that you should set up using the Oxygen builder because without this main template your website won't display the header and footer in the front end.

Therefore before anything else you should build a template for the header and footer for your website as every theme has one or more dedicated templates for the website header and footer but in Oxygen, you can make as many main custom templates as you want.

Default Pages Template

Although you may custom design most of the pages of your website still there are other pages that you don't want to design individually therefore pages like that require a default template to load properly.

We usually design dedicated pages like homepage, about page, contact page you name it, but there are pages like policy pages that you don't want to design.

For that reason you need to set up a default page template for all the pages we don't care much about and don't want to design dedicatedly.

Blog Archive Template

Most of the WordPress users have a blog on their websites, therefore, I consider the blog archive a must-have template that you should set up if you are also one of them.

Blog archive will help you to showcase all the blog posts you publish on the front end, without any blog archive your posts won't be visible anywhere on the front-end of the website.

Blog Posts Template

Having a blog on the website also demands a separate template for the blog posts to load.

If you want you can use the same blog archive template for your posts but I personally prefer a completely separate template for the blog posts as I use the sidebar on the blog posts but not on the blog archive.

Therefore if you also think like me then you should set up a dedicated template for your blog posts using the Oxygen template builder.

Sidebar Template

Most people assign sidebars to the blog posts and pages of their websites, sidebar helps us showcasing other important content such as blog post links, category links and especially Call to Actions to help us attract new leads.

That is the reason every theme provides a dedicated sidebar template to use but when you are using Oxygen to build your website you need to set up a custom sidebar template.

I have a dedicated step by step tutorial on building a custom sidebar which you can find by clicking here.

Taxonomy Archives Template

If you have a blog on your site then you would also require one or more taxonomy archive templates on your website, as a blog also contains taxonomies like Categories and Tags by default.

Apart from that, you can assign custom taxonomies to your pages as well and if you create custom post types you may also need to set up custom taxonomies for that.

Thus you can build a template for the taxonomy archives and assign all the available taxonomies to that template or you can create separate templates for individual taxonomy types as it's your personal preference.

Having a dedicated template for taxonomy archives will help whenever someone visits any of the taxonomy archives they will find the content in a better and well-organized layout to the front end for the taxonomies like categories and tags.

Search Results Page Template

If you want to offer your visitors to perform searches on your website then you need to set up a search page template for them using the Oxygen template builder.

In this way, people can search for anything on your website using the dedicated search bar and they will end up getting the content they are looking for on the search results page.

404 Pages Template

Last but not the least would be the 404 error page template which you should and can set up using the Oxygen template builder.

404 page is a crucial page and it will help your website visitors to understand that they are looking for something that doesn't exist on your website.

The best practices for the 404 page is to first let your users know that this is a 404 error as they are looking for the wrong content and then offer them with some navigation of the main pages of your website like home page, about page and contact page.


If you are on this section then I can safely assume that you have already skimmed through the entire post where I have mentioned all the crucial and necessary templates you should build if you are using Oxygen builder.

I know there are few types of templates that I haven't included in the list like WooCommerce templates, and my reason for doing that is I have personally not tested WooCommerce with Oxygen yet, but whenever I get chance I will include them in this list.

In the beginning, I also struggled a lot to figure out the templates that I should set up while using Oxygen as I used to use themes like Astra and OceanWP and I am not a programmer, so I am sharing whatever I am learning throughout my journey.

I hope this post was helpful for you, if yes then please do me a favor and help others like you as well by sharing this post with them.

Thank you for being here and spending your precious time.

A Google & HubSpot Certified Digital Marketing Specialist, Self-Taught WordPress Expert, Useful BizDev (Business Development) Tools & Deals Explorer, and the Founder of SyncWin & Toolonomy.

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9 months ago

Awesome Blog post. I've been using Oxygen for some time now and always wondered What are those must-have templates I'm forgetting to add.

Accidentally stumbled on this post and it's a great summary of exactly what I need.

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