The WordPress platform is one of the hottest platforms for creating blogs and websites. It’s so versatile and offers the perfect environment for a wide variety of consumers. It’s a great environment for small business owners, freelancers, hobbyists and more. But should you use free WordPress themes or WordPress premium themes for your business?
One of the things about WordPress that makes it so valuable to use for blogs and websites is the use of themes. Themes are how you make your website or blog unique from all of the other ones using WordPress. Themes may involve the layout of your page and how to arrange visual elements.
Two Types of Themes
There are two different types of WordPress themes available for you to use for your business: free and premium. It can be hard to decide which type of theme is best for you. But breaking down the differences can help you make an educated decision based on your current situation. The good news is that you can always switch to another theme if your first choice doesn’t live up to your expectations.
WordPress offers a lot of free features considering it’s basically a free tool to use for building a blog or website. The same is true for the themes available for it. There are many different available free themes that you can download to use for your purposes. You may have a misconception that free means that these themes don’t have a lot to offer. But that’s not the case. You can find many quality themes available to use when it comes to the free themes.
Great for Startups
Free WordPress themes are perfect for someone looking to get started online without having to spend more money on optimizing their business. Free themes also work for someone that’s planning on using this for their hobby. Keep in mind that you can always start with a free theme when setting up in the beginning. But you can switch over to another theme later. Just remember that you may need to reformat your website to fit with the new theme. This ensures that all of your plugins and other features are compatible.
Pros and Cons
While anything free sounds like a good deal, there are pros and cons when it comes to using a free WordPress theme.
First, let’s explore the pros of choosing one of the free WordPress themes for your small business website.
– Fits into a budget easily as it’s free
– Large number of available options through WordPress
– Free themes have stricter standards for approval when in the WordPress directory
While free WordPress themes are an effective way to set up an impressive website, there are a few cons to consider.
– Will not offer as many choices with customization
– May face some troubles with updates
– There are limited features
– Limited to no support
– Limited to no tutorials
– May find that many other sites are using the free theme if it’s popular
WordPress premium themes are exactly what they sound like because they are an upgrade to the free themes. Since you’re paying for being able to use this type of theme, developers are often looking for ways to please their customers. This means that premium themes will offer the latest developments, features, support and more. For instance, you can get a custom design that a company makes specifically for your needs rather than trying to find something to fit within the parameters that you want for your blog or website.
Examine the Quality
Some things that you may need to be on the lookout for when it comes to WordPress premium themes is quality. You may find that some premium themes are poorly coded. They may look great externally, but internally they may leave something to be desired. This can cause problems with updates, plugins and other features in your website or blog.
Features vs. Plugins
Another issue can be that they offer features that should actually be plugins rather than features, which means that if you switch to a new theme, you’ll have to make some big changes to your site. Finally, they can offer you too many features to make their theme look like a good deal, but may not be one. Often, you’ll find that you cannot use or need all of the features and they can slow down your site.
Pros and Cons
As most consumers know, something that comes with a price tag might also have some pros and cons.
Here are some of the advantages of choosing a WordPress premium theme for your website rather than a free one.
– Large number of available premium themes can be found online
– Premium themes are more customizable than their free counterparts
– Because they’re not free, there’s less chance of other sites using it, so it stays more unique
– A developer can custom design a theme for your business
– Will come with updates
– Support should be available
– Should have a large number of features
– Some developers offer tutorials on how best to use their themes
While the list of cons for WordPress premium themes might be shorter, there are definitely some factors to consider before sealing the deal.
– Will cost you money to use
– Not all premium developers are created equally
– Not all WordPress premium themes are an upgrade in that some may have issues
Evaluate Your Situation
You may feel that you should go with WordPress premium themes because it’s premium, but you need to evaluate what your business situation really calls for with a theme. If you’re able to find a free theme that works well with what you need your blog or website to do, then, it’s probably not a good idea for you to invest money into a premium theme. The choice becomes, do you really need all of the bells and whistles that the premium theme contains, or if you’re just being seduced by them when they won’t be used at all.
Evaluate Your Budget
One of the first things you should consider in this is your budget. This can help you in your decision of free versus premium. Your budget might help narrow which premium theme to purchase if there are several that seem like a good fit for your site. Put this information aside for later in your search. You should also make a list of things that you want your theme to handle for your website. You could separate this list by having your needs defined.
What Suits Your Unique Needs
When going through the process of finding your perfect theme among the multitude that is available online, you’ll need to see what works best for your needs and wants. It may be a good idea to select a few favorites rather than just picking the first one that you find. Going through a number of themes will get you into the ballpark for the right theme. Then, you can weigh each of the themes off of your needs and wants list along with your budget.
There are a number of things that you should keep in mind when choosing your WordPress theme.
Download themes from reputable sources to protect your computer from the potential of being infected. Look for ratings and reviews from others that have used the themes, and do a little research on the source of your theme before downloading.
Look for themes that offer readability in that they don’t look overly cluttered. Some themes may have a more cluttered appearance that doesn’t offer much to your type of business. You want your blog or website to look professional, so this is important.
Find a theme that is mobile friendly as search engine crawlers prefer websites that offer mobile results since the new Google algorithm update, Mobilegeddon. This will assist your search engine optimization efforts.
A theme that is supported by multiple browsers is another plus to look for with your theme selection. You never know what browser your visitor may be using to view your site, and if it doesn’t load correctly, they’ll probably jump from your site to your competitor.
Make sure that the themes that you’re interested in can support the different plugins that you plan on using for your blog or website. It’s better for plugins to be supported that you won’t need rather than to have not enough plugins supported.
Finally, you’ll want to find a theme that offers support in that you’ll get answers to your questions when something weird occurs with your website or blog. As you go through customizing your theme, there’s always the potential for something to not run correctly or look right, so having an easy-to-contact support person means that you can get to the bottom of the issue quicker than you would on your own.
A Theme for Everyone
No matter if you choose free themes or WordPress premium themes that you have to shell out some money for, you’ll find a theme that best represents your business. The key is evaluating what your current situation requires and what will fit within your budget. Be sure to follow the tips to ensure that you don’t fall into a trap of downloading a theme from an untrustworthy source or other things that could cause issues.
Thinking of learning more about how you can have your own premium website created? We’d love to hear from you. Pressed Solutions offers a wide range of services starting at WordPress themes and moving towards creating your website for you to get you up and running quickly and efficiently.
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