Choosing A WordPress Theme

How To Choose A WordPress Theme Part 2

Most people reading this article are probably relatively new to WordPress and seeking knowledge and advice. Web Designer’s who are experts have already used and are using themes they like and have a strong relationship with the developer and trust the developer.

What does trust the developer really mean?

For me trusting the developer means they have a history of excellent support and a well functioning theme. A very important factor when picking a WordPress theme is a developer who’s theme is constantly being updated along with an easy update system directly from the WordPress dashboard. If they use plug-ins such as visual composer then visual composer needs to be updated quickly. The reason I say this is that I have probably trashed 20 premium themes in the learning process of picking a WordPress theme and developer. I’ve had so many themes that use visual composer and they rarely update the plug-in. When I have to send out emails to remind the developer to update Visual Composer because their theme has a very poor update system and the update system requires the user to guess if the developer has updated the plugin on their end. What I am explaining here is that a better developers plug

WordPress Logo Gear Up Text and Image

in update system with complex plugins that they have purchased a developer license through such as Visual Composer requires the user to delete the plugin and re-install it hoping that it is updated via the developer. Better themes show you that it needs to be updated and you can update it directly through the WordPress dashboard without deleting it or guessing if the developer has set the update for the user to easily click update. The WordPress theme business is so highly competitive now that the high-quality themes and developers are probably selling 90% of the business. One of the major reasons websites get hacked is due to out of date plug-ins and themes. The developer has to stay up with all the updates of the WordPress platform and the search engines. A big part of the updates is Security and function along with plugin and theme improvements (functions). It has taken me quite a while along with frustration and unnecessary work to hone down what themes I use consistently that are trustworthy to design a client site on.

I have had to rebuild several websites on trusted themes due to a learning curve from using developers with poor or no support and then pretty much disappear from the marketplace. One of my very favorite themes is HighEnd by HB-Themes and the best price to purchase this with free support is on Mojo Marketplace. I have been using that theme pretty much since I started with WordPress and the developer has constantly been improving his theme, functions, and ease-of-use. Their support has always been excellent and he has grown to be the number one theme seller on Mojo Marketplace. As a new WordPress user, it is best to pick a theme and get a good understanding of how it works and the page builder that you like. I like visual composer and it has been a stable page builder with a variety of functions. Another theme I like with an excellent page builder and consistent updates is the Divi theme. Sometime back I purchased a Divi membership just to use the bloom subscription plug-in. I noticed through the emails and updates that the Divi developers were constantly upgrading and improving the theme and the Divi builder. So I started using the theme and it has some great functions and seems to be coded well as their theme runs relatively fast. I am impressed with the constant development of the theme and its page builder as they work very hard to improve.

The Envato marketplace has an abundance of themes that are High-quality themes with thousands of sales and thousands of five-star reviews. Those are key factors in picking a theme and I always run a Pingdom speed test on the theme itself to see if the developer’s theme runs fast and how it looks on mobile. If the developer himself does not optimize his own theme for speed then it’s not the theme you would want to buy. Most of the good developer’s themes run pretty fast due to mobile sites speed being a ranking factor on Google. Also, just the high competition in the WordPress theme market is forcing developers to constantly improve function, design and demo data layouts.

If you are a newbie trying to build your website on WordPress which in my opinion is the best platform to use plan on spending several hundred hours learning the theme and functions along with how to make your site user-friendly and keep your bounce rate low. Even if your site looks relatively good It doesn’t mean it is designed to obtain inquiries or site traffic. Word press is excellent for SEO but it does not come without a lot of work and knowledge.

Installing WordPress And Your Theme

I see many support questions on installing the theme and they are generally user error. Many people expect their site to look like the theme display because the developer sells “I want my site to look like the theme” but when you download the demo data and you use the images that come with the theme there usually way too large and file size and will slow your site down terribly. Also, WordPress is somewhat complex, but that’s probably why it’s the best platform and most used throughout the internet. I’ve seen themes that I knew downloaded Demo Data and due to inexperience and frustration of long hours forgot some of the Lorem Ipsum text throughout the theme. We all need to be serious about our business website because your competitor surely does.

If you have trouble installing WordPress on your server don’t blame the theme developer that’s your job to learn. If you’re having problems with the theme do not give the theme developer a poor rating until you contact the developer for support because as a newbie the problems are generally from you, not the developer. WordPress is not that simple. There’s a reason designers charge what they do for a high-quality website design and a well-optimized site that runs fast and functions well on mobile.

Unless you plan on spending hundreds of man-hours on your business website it will most likely be a failure and you will say I had a website but it never worked for me.

Websites that are designed well and marketed well are the best marketing tool you will have in business. Today you can reach the entire world from your website and it is a brochure about your business and the first impression a user will rate your business. If it loads slowly you will probably lose them before they even hit the site if they do not find the information regarding what they are looking for when the mobile or desktop page opens they’re probably going to move on pretty quick to the next site. There is On-Site SEO and Off-Site SEO, but that is another blog article which I will write in the near future. I like to use All In One SEO. It is affordable, support is good and I have had excellent results with it. Many people use Yoast and I know it is also a good SEO plug-in but quite a bit more expensive. SEO is also very knowledge dependent.

If you are serious about your business and do not want to spend hundreds of hours on your website I suggest hiring a web designer with five star Google reviews and a designer that will give you the phone numbers of some of his clients for references. Make sure you like the designs in their portfolio.

If the Web Designer uses Wix or Weebly start running in the other direction!

Credit:
Don Niam
Digi Dezine

Written by: Don Niam

Published by: Google+

Copyright holder: Digi Dezine
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