The Parallax scrolling effect has become popular again in website designs and WordPress themes have been keen to incorporate this into their builds, but what is parallax? Simply, it means background images move by the camera slower than foreground images or elements. It was used in 2D video games to give the perception of depth to a game, where your character would move faster than the background behind which made the background look farther away.
Parallax usage in WordPress themes is a more modern trend which adds a nice visual touch when scrolling down the page and can also help draw attention to more important sections of the page. When used subtly it can add a nice finishing touch to page layouts, letting hero images and backgrounds scroll slower than your mouse movement on the scroll bar.
In this post we have hand-picked over 25 examples of the Best Free Parallax WordPress Themes 2016, all these themes are well designed and coded and incorporate some form of parallax movement into the design.
AccessPress Parallax is a fully-fledged multipurpose business theme that comes with parallax-scrolling effects combined with smooth animations as you scroll down the page. It has several sections on the homepage, including sections for a call to action, a portfolio, your team members and even testimonials.
SKT Parallaxme is a well-designed multipurpose business theme designed for service-based businesses. It uses one of the smoothest parallax-scrolling effects of all the themes on this list, and its homepage layout is well-suited for business. It allows you to list your services and details about your company before promoting pricing plans and a contact form.
Corporate Plus is another multipurpose business theme that uses a layout similar to the layouts featured in the previous two themes. It also uses a smooth parallax-scrolling effect complemented with just as smooth animations. This theme even comes with ecommerce capabilities.
Latte is a portfolio theme designed for creative freelancers and agencies, especially those that perform visual work, such as photography or graphic design. It essentially allows you to outline information about yourself and the services you offer before showcasing your latest and greatest work in a grid layout.
Llorix One Lite
Llorix One Lite is a simple, one-page WordPress theme designed for all business types, especially corporate businesses. It uses a large header complete with a call to action at the top of the homepage and allows you to showcase the companies and brands you’ve worked with beneath that. It also uses a modern design.
Square is a multipurpose business theme that uses one of the simplest styles and layouts of any theme on this list. Its header features a slider, and the rest of the homepage features simple sections for your services, About Us blurb and logo showcase.
Athena is a simple business theme that uses parallax scrolling to round out its design. It’s a multipurpose theme that can be used to showcase the services and past work of any business, but it also comes with support for WooCommerce. SEO, six widget areas, a masonry grid for the blog and more are also included.
Himalayas is a well-designed, multipurpose business theme that jam packs a lot of features into its free version. This includes a slider that uses calls to action at the top of the homepage as well as an entire homepage dedicated to outlining your services, blog and portfolio.
Cannyon is a simple business theme that uses a classic layout in a modern, flat design. Its demo features a fullwidth header while the rest of the page is divided into a content area and right-hand sidebar layout.
ResponsiveBoat is a child theme of Zerif Lite, one of the most popular free parallax scrolling themes for WordPress. It uses a layout similar to its parent theme, but this theme uses a slightly more modern and interactive design. It also features a subtle change to the menu, meaning it’s placed in the middle rather than to the side.
Oria is a modern blogging theme that uses parallax scrolling as well as a masonry grid to showcase your latest content. It also comes with a small header at the top of the homepage you can use for social media buttons and customizations for colors and Google Fonts.
Treeson is another simple theme that uses a classic layout. This one also uses a fullwidth header, but it features two buttons for calls to action. The rest of the page features the content on the left and the sidebar on the right, as you’d expect in a classic design.
OnePirate is another child theme of Zerif Lite. This one features a design that’s closer in style to the parent theme than the previous child theme was. It features the same buttons in the header and smooth animations the parent theme has.
Evolve is a multipurpose theme best suited for business. It uses a simple slider complete with calls to action and allows you to showcase your services and latest blog posts. It also comes with support for WooCommerce.
Zerius is yet another child theme of Zerif Lite. This one is best suited for professional blogs while the other child themes (as well the parent theme) are best suited for creative freelancers and agencies. The theme features a bit of a darker color scheme by default, and it uses a search bar beneath the header.
Zerif Lite is one of the most popular parallax scrolling themes available for WordPress and one of the most popular WordPress themes in general as it features over 100,000 active installs. It features a well-structured homepage designed for business.
Business One is a multipurpose business theme that features a stunning layout complete with a modern style and captivating typography. Its header features a typical left-hand logo, right-hand menu and call to action layout that’s become classic in the business world. You can showcase your services after that.
SKT White is a sleek and modern business theme that uses slick lazy loading in addition to a smooth parallax-scrolling effect. It’s a great theme for corporate businesses as it allows you to showcase several calls to action in the header as well as your services, company blurb, blog posts, testimonials and more throughout the rest of the homepage.
Moesia is a multipurpose theme that uses a simple layout in a modern style. It uses a call to action in the header, and its menu is showcased beneath the header section. It also allows you to showcase your services.
Advertica Lite is another simple business theme that uses a modern style. It uses a simple header image with no call to action, but it does allow you to showcase your services and the rest of your business beneath that.
Invert Lite is very similar to the previous theme, except it uses a different color scheme. It’s a business theme that features a simple header image and allows you to showcase the services you offer and information about your company throughout the homepage.