On the way getting your WordPress website up and running, you will come to the stage where you have to opt for a WordPress theme. My friends, if you ever feel dizzy looking at all the options you have got, do not blame yourself! Even a WordPress expert would be overwhelmed in such situation. Why? Easy! Because there are so many choices of WordPress themes to consider: free themes, paid themes, not to mention the variety of each type and the illusion you will definitely feel, that each theme looks better than the previous ones.
Therefore, in order to avoid ending up choosing a low-quality WordPress theme, you need to take a deep breath and let your brain function. Now, have you ever wondered why you should be careful with choosing a theme? Well, as you should know, WordPress has themes for all kinds of websites, which means each theme may be launched for a different purpose. If chosen carelessly, the theme may be disadvantageous to your website.
For example, choosing a theme that does not assist readability is absolutely not a good decision for a news website. Besides, while a badly coded WordPress theme may lead to unwanted issues for your website, and a too-complicatedly coded one can turn your website into a snail. Therefore, you must – I repeat, must – look before you leap.
But how? Good question! And I am here to answer that, specifically by introducing the 9 things to consider in the process of choosing a suitable, high-quality and reasonably priced WordPress theme:
- Whether to Choose Premium or Free Themes
- How the Theme Makes You Feel
- Its Capability to Support Plugins
- How Speedy its Performance is
- Does it Enable Easy Customization?
- Responsiveness is a Must
- Its Cross Browser Compatibility
- Simplicity is the Best
- Do not forget about Security
Enough introduction! Let’s go!
Whether to Choose Premium or Free Themes
We tend to think that the price says it all about the quality of the product. As WordPress offers two kinds of themes: free themes vs. premium ones, is this rule applied to WordPress free themes? Well, to some extent, yes. However, the devoted WordPress developers are making great efforts to change the norm by introducing many awesome free themes, replacing the badly coded ones in the past. Much as we appreciate their efforts, the long-standing way of thinking cannot be eliminated, not yet. So, how different is it between the two kinds of WordPress themes? Let’s find out!
- Premium themes have more updates, better documentation, and no attribution links. What is more, in most cases, you are entitled to lifetime support upon purchasing a premium theme. However, they are quite expensive, normally priced between $50 and $200.
- Meanwhile, free themes are, obviously, free! Nevertheless, you will have to accept the fact that it usually has attribution links, and can be recognized more easily.
At the end of the day, it is up to you to decide whether your website should use a premium or a free theme. But, to add some fair words, premium themes totally make your WordPress site more professional and high-class.
How the Theme Makes You Feel
The first thing is always about the look.
Now, look at the WordPress theme and think about the content of your website, how does the theme make you feel? Does it feel suitable, or nah? Have no idea? Well, here are some examples to follow: If your WordPress website is specialized in news, choose a basic and simple looking theme. In case it is about fashion, choose something graceful and classy. How about a music and entertaining website? My choice would be a vibrant and energetic WordPress theme! That’s just it! Basing on the soon-to-be content of your website, you will know exactly how you want your theme to be.
What does this mean? It means that you first have to be very determined and single-minded about the orient of your WordPress website in order to select a perfect WordPress theme for it.
Its Capability to Support Plugins
Refuse to think that you will need some WordPress plugins? Think again! While it is fairly OK for your WordPress website to function without a plugin, having some necessary plugins will take your site to whole new level. To sum up, how plugins work, all I can say is that they make everything possible!
Of course, you won’t need all of them to make the best of your WordPress website, you only need some basic goodies to do the job. These include such types of plugins as caching plugins (W3 Total Cache, WP Super Cache, etc.), SEO plugins (Yoast SEO, etc.), contact form plugins (Gravity Forms, Contact Form 7, etc.) among others.
So, make sure the WordPress you choose will support all of these plugins. In case you cannot find any information regarding that, ask the theme provider!
How Speedy its Performance is
As a matter of fact, a WordPress website (or any type of website) that takes too long to load cannot be a favorite destination of Internet users. That is to say, optimized speed plays a huge role in determining the search engine rankings result of your website, not to mention its impacts on conversion rates and online revenues. See how important it is yet? If yes, then be careful when choosing a WordPress theme for your website.
Another type of themes to avoid is the poorly-coded ones because they will affect your site speed as well.
Does it Enable Easy Customization?
The answer to the question above should be 100% yes. To be considered a good WordPress theme, one must be easily customizable. Why? Imagine the hardship of stressing yourself every time you wish to make changes to your website. Well, what a horrible scene, isn’t it?!
So, before buying a WordPress theme, make sure activities like changing layout, adding images, uploading logo, etc. can be easily carried out. Besides, take into account the dashboard as well. Ensure that you can perform everything effortlessly with your dashboard even if you have no knowledge whatsoever about coding and stuff.
Responsiveness is a Must
For your information, as early as in 2014, 30% of traffic came from mobile devices such as mobile phones and tablets (according to marketingland.com). I believe this ratio has conveyed how vital it is to have a responsive WordPress website that can adjust itself perfectly on any device’s screen. Sharing the same viewpoint, almost all WordPress theme creators now provide themes that are fully responsive and mobile friendly. It fact, it is so popular that it has become a norm in developing WordPress themes. So, if you encounter any theme that is not responsive, cross it out of the consideration list immediately!
And oh, no matter how wonderful it appears to be in the description, do not ever forget to run the demo before deciding to buy any WordPress theme!
Its Cross Browser Compatibility
Always have backup plans: your visitors may not use Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox to visit your website. Thus, if you want to keep your customers satisfied all the time, make certain that they will see the best appearance of your WordPress website on all browsers. As how to guarantee this thing, you must never forget to check the theme in popular browsers, both on PC as well as on mobile devices.
For a little help, here is a place you can check browser compatibility!
Simplicity is the Best
I bet you have heard the famous saying by Leonardo Da Vinci: “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”, which can be applied to our process as well.
While I acknowledge that many people, including myself, have a liking for complicated designs with various colors, animations, and layouts, that may be not a wise tendency when it comes to choosing a WordPress theme. The thing is you will not use all of those features, and they may cause problems to the site as well. So why take that risk when you can root for a theme that supports the aim of your WordPress site without making visitors feel dizzy and lost? Remember, a nice-looking theme is useless if it cannot help you reach your goals.
So, just do yourself a favor and grasp a theme that looks simple yet eye-catching, and most importantly, suitable for your WordPress website!
Do Not Forget About Security
Seems like I repeat the word “security” in every single post of mine, yet I have no regret! Security is of utter importance when it comes to WordPress, and a good WordPress theme must absolutely fulfill this requirement.
But providers won’t tell a thing about it in the description, so how do we check whether the theme is secure – you wonder? Just look at the comments! The comments say so much about a product, including a WordPress theme. In most cases, do not go for a theme that does not have many downloads, reviews, and comments, unless it comes from a trustworthy developer. Another tip is to view and buy themes from such market websites as
Another tip is to view and buy themes from such market websites as ThemeForest because this website shows you all the comments from buyers of any product. With this kind of transparency, you are guaranteed the utter truth about the WordPress theme you wish to purchase.
See? Choosing the right WordPress theme is far from confusing like you may have thought. Just follow the right process, and the right theme awaits you!
Latest posts by Thy Dao (see all)
- Visual Composer: A Powerful WordPress Page Builder for Any Theme and Layout - December 26, 2016
- Things to Consider Before Choosing a WordPress Theme - December 16, 2016
- 8 Steps to Become a WordPress Professional - December 8, 2016