Buying a WordPress theme can be a bit intimidating. There are quite a few options out there and a billion websites that all contain “the best” ones. There are definitely good WordPress themes and bad WordPress themes. If you know nothing about coding and how to make sure that a theme is coded efficiently then there are other ways to make sure the theme you are about to buy is a quality theme.
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1 | COLOR CUSTOMIZATION
This can be a potential brand dilemma. If you purchase a theme that does not let you change the color or have a lot of options then make sure that this color at least fits the image your brand is going for. If your logo is a soft shade of pink and the website is a bright orange (most templates are not a bright orange, thankfully) then you may want to look for the color customization feature because I would hate for you to be stuck in that situation since the majority of themes are not able to be refunded!
2 | TYPOGRAPHY
Do the fonts that are already pre-installed match the style of your logo or does this take away from the branding that you have already established? A theme is even better when font customization is an easy drop down solution and can be changed within a matter of seconds. Most WordPress themes are not this way however and typically can be changed within the CSS. To change the typography within a theme (that does not have a drop down solution) then you will need to create a child theme and then apply your fonts to this style sheet in the child theme so that any update can override the code. It’s
3 | OVERALL LAYOUT
What do you think about the home page? Do you like the layout and if you don’t, is there a way to lay out the page differently? Some themes have multiple layout options which means the page is widgetized or sectioned off (which is good!) but some are set in stone. If you don’t like the layout and it looks too time consuming to figure out.. May not be the best route to go.
4 | ABILITY TO ADD PERSONAL TOUCH
So you buy a theme. But it’s YOUR website and you don’t want your site to look like everyone else’s website that has used this theme. You want to stand out because that’s who you are! Make sure that you are able to add a personal touch. Sometimes there is a portfolio section of people that have used this theme and styled it differently. If this is the case, then that is a great discovery because those people were able to add a branded touch to their site!
5 | BLOG POST LAYOUT OPTIONS
Blog posts can be arranged in a variety of ways. There is the masonry layout, the grid layout, the full post layout, the shortened version post layout, and more. Make sure that the blog layout they have pre-coded for you is the layout you like because the format of your blog post page is definitely important!
6 | WIDGET AREAS
Widget areas are fantastic because you are able to customize each area to be whatever your heart desires. If they have a slideshow displayed in a widget area then this is great because you will have the option to switch that slideshow out for whatever you want if you decide to change your site up a bit.
7 | NAVIGATION FORMAT
If you like the way the navigation is displayed, awesome! That is fantastic. But if you do not like the way the navigation is formatted in this theme then check to see if the theme provides different navigation layout options. Some themes give you multiple options, I have seen some that give you up to 6 options which is crazy awesome!
8 | MOBILE RESPONSIVE ABILITY
This not only improves your search engine ranking but also is a user-friendly solution to a lot of traffic problems. Having your site be able to be seen across multiple platforms such as an I-Pad, mobile phone, and a laptop is perfect. There is no way you should ever buy a theme if it is not already mobile responsive. Definitely something to keep your eyes open for!
9| SUPPORT FOR THEME
Go check out the forums or comments about this theme and how well their support is. More than likely, you are going to run into a problem that you are going to have no idea how to fix. If this theme provides an easy way to contact them and replies fairly fast this is a huge plus!
10 | TESTIMONIALS
Having solid testimonials for the theme is also a great feature to look for. Testimonials are cool and usually genuine. They always make me feel better about my purchases!
11 | ABILITY TO GROW WITH YOUR BRAND
You know your brand better than anyone. You know the goals you have, the highlights of your company that have the most potential to take off at a quick pace, and the amount of work put into the incredible business you created. If you grow more, can this theme keep up? I have had major problems with this one myself. Don’t pick a theme that fits your business perfectly now but may not in the future if you speed along successfully.
Happy WordPress theme shopping.