Undoubtedly, WordPress is the world’s number one content management system to build websites. Today, more than 74 million websites are operating on WordPress’s platform, chosen by many of the top companies and startups. That’s more than 27% of all websites on the internet. One of the clear reasons for choosing it as a website’s platform that it’s free. For startups, it’s good to avail the free benefits, but as your business grows, you need to shift to a premiumWordPress Theme (i.e., paid theme) because as we know, free always has some limitations.
Paid themes often have more functionality over free themes such as features, support, code, and general quality. It’s true that not every free WordPress theme is a bad theme, but it’s also true that every paid theme is not a good theme. With over millions of Themes available online, it is tough to pick the right one according to your needs of business.
How should you decide?
Since your website’s look and feel needs to be consistent to enforce an visual business entity as well as customer experience, you require a perfect theme to create a WordPress blog and stick with it. To avoid pitfalls, we have curated a checklist that’ll help you getting a fully-functional and user-oriented website by choosing a right theme.
Is the Design what you are looking for?
It is imperative while looking for the themes for your business. Its design should match your brand, vision and idea. Most of the time, you won’t find the perfect match for your desired website’s design. At that point, look for the built-in functionality and features of a theme to create a design that you want.
Functionality and Features
WP Themes help you getting a complete “remodel” of your website’s front-end user interface. Not only can you change colors, fonts, icons but also customize minute details like layouts, sliders, etc. Before deciding on a theme, ensure you are getting Page Builder features for customization, extra layouts and page templates that give you options to customize, niche-specific custom pages and custom templates, bundled plugins and much more like:
Cross Browser and Mobile Device Compatibility
With the increasing number of people on the internet using mobile devices, it’s vital to select a theme that is compatible with all kind of phones and tablets. If your theme isn’t mobile responsive, your brilliant UI work won’t have any magical effects on the users.
While you ensure that a theme is responsive, it is also important to check its cross-browser compatibility as people use a different kind of browsers over their phone.
Important: the more ‘feature-packed’ a theme is, the less is the likelihood that all those features would work equally well on all browsers.
While setting up your WordPress website, the first things you are likely to download are plenty of plugins for the multiple needs of a website. Plugins add to the enhanced functionality and look of your website which makes them one of the most important components of building a website. Ensure that you have checked the compatibility of different plugins with the theme.
Most premium WordPress themes support all the major plugins such as W3 Total Cache, Jetpack, Yoast SEO, WooCmmerce, BuddyPress, Ninja Forms, and so on. Some developers offer to check and get back to their client which is an excellent pre-purchase service.
Important: While using different plugins on your website, ensure that none of them conflict with each other because that’ll hamper your website’s performance.
Pre-optimized for Search Engines
Most of the paid themes pay attention to SEO ranking as they use the simple form of coding. It makes it easier for search engine crawlers to easily index your web page and put it in the top searched. For an SEO optimized Theme, look for features like:
- Error: 404 Not Found page
- Custom taxonomies
- Custom pages
- Custom post templates
Important: You can also use various plugins that optimize the website’s ranking.
It is a fact that 7 out of 10 users will leave your site if it takes more than 4 seconds to load. Your website needs to load faster to keep getting traffic. Whenever you are choosing a theme, make sure you check its loading speed on Google Pagespeed Insights and if it’s good then select it. There’s no point in selecting a slow-loading theme.
Important: You can use various caching plugins on your website to enhance the speed of a website. Also, regularly update the plugins you are using and remove the ones that you no longer use on your website.
One of the most prominent features that a theme has to have is its ability to translate the back-end interface of a website. Not to your users but to your team members. Yes, that’s right. Most of the people have it confused with the front-end content. PolyLang compatibility means translating the back-end interface for those members whose native language is not English, making site management a localised experience.
Important: A PolyLang Theme boosts SEO efforts and increases your web page ranking.
Is the cost an issue?
Don’t settle for prices. Remember that hours of work and prowess are poured into a theme that’s set for a particular price. Just ensure few things before purchasing a theme:
- License: Two types of License are offered by a Theme Developer: Personal and Developer’s. A developer’s license will have the support for multiple websites while personal license provides support for only one website.
- Number of Themes: You can choose whether you have to buy one theme or multiple themes. Some developers offer multiple themes at a single price.
- Subscription vs. One Time: Most of the themes come with the subscription which means you’ll pay for a theme and for a full year you’ll receive free support and upgrades. There are also developers who will sell lifetime themes for one set price upfront.
Is Enough Support Available?
Support is why you’re paying for a paid theme. You need someone to help you at every pitfall that you come across on your website. Many will have forums to help but you can still look for these things in a developer:
- Response time of a problem.
- Problem-solving skills.
- What kind of channels do they support? Forums, Phone or Ticketing?
- Theme instructions before using them.
Look For Trustworthy Developer
You need a developer that stays with you throughout your online business over the Internet. For that, you need someone who is reliable, trustworthy and established. Before choosing a developer you can check: Google review, the number of themes, support forums, social media of a developer.
Purchasing a theme is an important decision because your website will be your home on the internet. It’ll reflect your cachet to the worldwide. We hope that this post helps you in your search for a reliable and efficient WordPress theme. If you know some more ways to select the right theme, do let us know in the comment box.