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Ayan Sarkar
December 12, 2014

Table of content

WordPress offers a long list of themes to her users. You might get confused while choosing one for yourself. Few economists do suggest that offering too many options is not always good. It may lead to “analysis paralysis”. And settling for the best WordPress theme is one of the toughest things to do. You may easily get overwhelmed. Chances are that you may choose a low quality theme that does not favour your blog or your Ecommerce site.

Here in such cases where you have a long list of choices it is worthy to devote some time to know the ways of making the right choice. We shall suggest you a few points that may help you in choosing the right theme for your site based upon WordPress.

  • The Price factor: Many years ago you may decide on your theme by looking at its price tag. Premium & high quality themes demanded a good price. While the free themes were poorly coded. These themes were mostly used to capture sensitive user data. But time has changed for better. Today the dynamic WordPress developer team create many high quality themes & distribute them freely. As such, now you cannot decide upon the quality of a theme by looking at its price tag. Here we shall enlist a few pros & cons of the Premium themes.

Pros of Premium Themes
i) You get more updates: One of the best features of premium themes is that they are updated more often. WordPress CMS is regularly evolved. Therefore a theme which is regularly updated will patch up the security issues.
ii) Unique designs: WordPress is a highly popular CMS platform. Thus you may get to see lots of websites to be using the same free themes having repeated designs. Whereas the designs of premium themes are more unique as they are rarely used.
iii) Better documentation: Most of the premium themes include a PDF explaining you its detailed functionality. This is absent in most of the free themes.
iv) Better support system: The developers of premium themes give robust support to their customers through live chat, public forum & an email ticketing. Free themes mostly have public forums for support.
v) Security: Free themes are more prone to virus attacks. Premium themes cover most of the security loopholes.

Cons of Premium Themes
i) Limitations of customization: There are limitations to customize a premium theme.
ii) No copyright of themes: The premium themes are owned by their owner developers. They are not freely available.
iii) Complex configuration: With a variety of custom settings in their personal custom administration panel you may need more time to learn them.

Whether free or premium theme you should look for quality or care that has been employed in the creation of the theme. The quality of the code is the most important matter.

Judge the quality of the theme from public forums. What types of issues are faced by the customers & how well those are solved by the developers.
• Speed of page load: Fast loading speed of the web page is one of the deciding factors for good user experience thereby increasing the traffic, page rank, conversion rates & thus increasing the online revenue for you.

Here we shall enlist 3 things in a theme which are to be avoided to minimise the loading speed.

i) More features-heavy themes: Do not choose the themes that include 20 or more pre installed plugins, 10 or more different sliders & many animations based on JavaScript.
ii) Increased use of large file formats: Avoid the themes that amply use a lot of background videos & full-width images.
iii) Bad coding: Poor codes mean the themes are archaic that is not updated for a long time.

Take Pingdom Website Speed Test to check out the speed of the theme. Type the theme URL & see how long it takes to load & in the process how many HTTP requests it has made. Less is the best.

  • Theme design & user experience: It is easily understood that an alluring design that focuses your brand in the best light is good for you. To select such themes you can follow the below mentioned steps.
    i) Websites that sell best designer themes: Search for a website that sells best designer themes.
    ii) Thoroughly browse the demos: Browse the demo theme designs & check whether the theme excites you or not? Your gut feeling is most important.
    iii) Cross browser compatibility & easy access: The themes that are cross browser compatible & easily accessible are the best.
  • Responsive design: Around 30% of website visits are made from mobile devices. Therefore responsive themes are in. To choose the best responsive theme, run the demo through Google’s mobile friendliness tool.
  • The factor of SEO: Many SEO plugins are available for WordPress. Thus we suggest you to look for a theme that includes ‘SEO optimized’ term in its description but do not believe in it blindly as there are many themes that make plenty of SEO mistakes.

We suggest you to install extensions to Chrome browser like SEO Site Tools or MozBar to run your demo themes.

  • Custom friendly themes: Go for the themes that include a customization dashboard. If they have that then you need not have to make changes to the theme style sheets. You may also install plugins such as Visual Page Editor to create complex structures of pages without tampering the code.
  • Security: Check your theme’s security from its review section. See what its users have to say. Transparent reviews can be received from community websites like ThemeForest.

Every theme has loopholes in its architecture. But choose the one that makes least mistakes. We hope our piece of information will help you to select the best possible WordPress theme for your site. Good luck.

Ayan Sarkar

Ayan Sarkar is one of the youngest entrepreneurs of India. Possessing the talent of creative designing and development, Ayan is also interested in innovative technologies and believes in compiling them together to build unique digital solutions. He has worked as a consultant for various companies and has proved to be a value-added asset for each of them. With years of experience in web development, product managing and building domains for customers, he currently holds the position of the CTO in Webskitters Technology Solutions Pvt. Ltd.