WordPress. For better or for worse, it has completely transformed the process of website development. WordPress has taken what used to be a highly technical process more akin to a science than an art to something anyone with the ability and patience to read through simplified code can master. In response to this trend, many, many products have emerged to make the process even simpler. But which ones make the cut?
|1||ThemeForest is known for its emphasis on selection, and with over 12,000 templates for WordPress, Joomla, HTML, Magento, and more, priced at around $50 each, this is definitely a reputation they live up to.||5||View|
|2||iThemes stands out as a developer because they offer more than just templates – they offer quality educational materials too. Access to over 500 hours of training materials can be purchased for just $197. That’s just $.40/hr.!||4.5||View|
|3||StudioPress markets its product as the ‘Genesis Framework,’ which is a comprehensive platform that comes in a variety of packages depending on your need and which also comes loaded with important marketing features like search engine optimization and responsive, mobile friendly design.||4||View|
|4||DIYThemes markets itself as a WordPress Framework as well, this time called ‘Thesis.’ For the money, Thesis Professional ($197) is one of the best WordPress development packages around.||3.5||View|
|5||Obox is good for small business owners who don’t have a lot to spend. For just $19/mo., they offer membership access to a wide selection of basic, effective themes.||3||View|
|6||Pagelines gives you a ‘Design Management System’ to help guide the WordPress development experience. Monthly packages start as low as $8/mo.||2.5||View|
|7||Headway Themes is a one stop solution for anyone who needs to do just about anything with WordPress. They don’t stand out for any one strength in particular, but they can certainly help you get the job done.||2||View|
|8||Rounding out our list, Mojo Themes is more or less a WordPress marketplace. It places mass variety over guidance and customer service, which can be helpful for those who know what they’re doing but pretty confusing for beginners.||1.5||View|
What To Consider When Buying Custom WordPress Templates
In recent years, a number of theme designers and WordPress template developers have emerged. Such companies aim to integrate their products and services with the revolutionary content management system to make it even more user friendly. Many market themselves as WordPress ‘frameworks’ or ‘templates,’ and some just call what they’re selling ‘themes.’ At the end of the day, all of these products are basically drag n’ drop applications designed to remove as much of the coding from the WordPress development/management processes as they can.
Many programs are just one cookie cutter variation of the other; and, if you spend enough time surfing the web, you’ll begin to notice that one WordPress template is-another-is-another. In many cases, simplification calls for uniformity, and if you’re a small business owner on a budget with a million other things to do, this uniformity is something you’re going to have to accept.
But this doesn’t mean that you should settle for WordPress mediocrity. In fact, there are actually a number of factors that can help you determine what’s good and what’s not.
Level of Support
When you get down to it, every WordPress theme designer is fundamentally offering the same exact product– a simplified template that can cut web development time in half. This means that choosing the right designer is largely a process of finding the one that offers the right Level of Support. WordPress templates exist to make WordPress easier, but the truth is that most people who use them are still going to have a hard time. Even the most simplified application is still going to require some amount of technical know-how, and good WordPress theme designers are those that recognize and address this reality.
When choosing a WordPress Theme, don’t just choose one that looks cool; instead, choose one from a company with a reputation for quality educational resources and effective customer support. You might think that you like your ‘cool theme’ as is, but things change. A month down the line you are inevitably going to want to alter your website, and ultimately it will be much easier to do so if you’ve got access to support.
Number of Themes available
Speaking of making changes, good WordPress theme developers are ones that offer a wide variety themes and sell them in packages.
If you’re just starting out with WordPress development, chances are that your gut instinct will be to buy just one template and to play around with it for a while to get a hang of things. This is all and well, but if you’re running a business you’ll eventually realize that WordPress customization can very literally be endless. If you’re serious about your website, you’re eventually going to want to purchase a WordPress template package that allows you to choose from multiple designs, so that you can make changes quickly as your business grows.
In a world of commodity goods, such as WordPress templates, probably the most important factor to decision is price. If it’s cheap, it’s good. If it’s expensive, it’s not. But if it’s too cheap, it really won’t be good. And, if you’re willing to pay a premium, you’d better make sure you’re not buying too much.
Make any sense? Probably not. What’s important to realize is that different WordPress websites call for different WordPress measures. Some small businesses just need a simple, one-use package that can help them get online and spread the word. On the other end of the spectrum, some small businesses exist solely to develop WordPress sites!
Finding a good price means finding a WordPress theme designer that offers a package reflective of your needs AND your budget.