The layout of your WordPress website is one of the most important factors for building trust in your visitors. More than 80% of the people will first take a look at the design of your website before they even consider purchasing something from it.
Even though, not everyone has the skills to single-handedly create unique website layout, or to pay the huge amount of money to an agency. We can still build a website with awesome looks, thanks to WordPress.
It’s not a mystery, why WordPress is the most used Content Management system of all time: It’s free, easy to use and it has everything needed to create great looking website.
Additionally, the functions of this application can be easily extended with the help of the available free WordPress themes and plugins.
Although this is a free application, to get the maximum from it and add awesome looks to your site. You should definitely consider purchasing premium WordPress theme.
Why should you give up on your Free WordPress Theme?
The first big question that pops up in your head right now is probably “Why should I pay for a theme since I got a free one?”. And if you still don’t know the answer to this question, you are probably just starting a website.
Most of the free WordPress themes are used from:
Beginners who want to learn how to build website on their own;
To see how WordPress works;
For testing purposes.
Even if you start with free WordPress theme, if you’ve done your job well, after a couple of months your website will start to receive a lot of traffic. Which will hopefully turn into a profitable online business.
Once that happens, or even before that; Once you understand how WordPress actually works and master it, you will want to do more stuff.
Another way to understand that you need to change your free WordPress theme with a paid one is by looking at other famous websites in your specific niche. You will notice the fancy layout and the cool email opt-in forms and you ask yourself: “Why I don’t have the same things inside my dashboard?”
Well, after you master the admin panel, and you know what exactly is needed for a website to be build. Then you will know that your free WordPress theme doesn’t have the functions you want to add, and you will probably need to purchase one.
Why should you purchase premium WordPress theme?
Except adding more functions, purchasing a premium theme comes with other privileges. I can assemble them into these three main categories:
Front-end – Quality themes comes with unique looks. It will completely change the layout of your website, thus, your business will look a lot better in the eyes of your potential buyers.
Back-end – This is huge. Free themes give you only a fraction of the things you can do with WordPress. Going premium will give you access to some cool features that you never knew existed.
Security – Regular updates are essential, for keeping your business secure from hackers. Additionally, you will have people to turn to when you have issues with the theme, or you don’t know how to make certain changes.
If you are ready to take your WordPress website to the next level, and transform it into something even more awesome, let me tell you what you should look for before making the final decision:
Section 1 Current Project – What is your project about?
What is your business about? Are you selling shoes or phones, or you are just writing articles?
Before your deactivate your free WordPress theme, take a look at your business idea first.
How your site looks now, how you want it to look, how it should look in the future?
Answer the question above, draw on a piece of paper if needed, but the first step start from here. Know what you want, to get what you want.
Section 2 Responsiveness – Guarantee 100% great user experience to your visitors
More and more people are browsing the web through their smartphones and tablets. The world is shifting, and so should you. Responsive design is a must for every website owner. This will not only guarantee great user experience for your visitors, but it will also ensure you site is not penalized from Google.
Yes, this can happen. Google announced that the responsive design of a website will be taken into consideration when ranking it. This means that the responsive design is a must for all your WordPress website.
Since this is something huge, most of the theme vendors are providing mobile friendly themes. But still, to be 100% sure, double check if the one you are going to purchase looks good on mobile devices.
Section 3 Coding – Save time and money by purchasing a theme that won’t require coding
Learning HTML and CSS can be exhausting. Yes, it’s interesting and it will open a lot of doors if you are an expert, but if you aren’t, you won’t be needing to purchase a theme, right? You will probably create one on your own.
Even if you do know a thing or two about coding, still getting a premium theme that is created from A to Z will save you a lot of time and efforts. You are already spending a lot of time creating fresh content for your blog, and searching for new ways to increase your sales. Why waste time on something like that.
One more thing. Make sure the theme you are about to purchase is built on the latest web standards. This means HTML5 and CSS3.
Another great way to avoid touching a single line of code is by using page builder plugins. They transform complex code tags into easy to use front/back end editor panel. Some of the themes have such plugins included.
Like machines, websites also break, this happens every day. But don’t panic, there is almost nothing unfixable in this world. As long as you have someone to turn to when s*** happens, everything will be ok.
Check if the theme you are going to purchase provide quality 24/7 technical support. You don’t know when you will need to contact them.
Additionally, check if the theme has some kind of documentation or video tutorials included. Every WordPress theme has different options and configurations. Unlike free WordPress themes, which have only a few available options, premium ones come with a lot of different features that уou may don’t know how to use.
Section 5 Speed – Make your site lightning fast
When changing your free WordPress theme with paid one, you shouldn’t only expect better looking and more functional website. Improving the speed and performance is another key thing you should want from the theme.
Like responsiveness, the speed of your site is also taken under consideration when Google ranks websites.
Which is understandable, no one wants to wait too long for a site to load, right? And Google also knows that. Fast sites rank better, attract more visitors and earn more money.
Before purchasing premium WordPress theme, make sure it’s speed optimized. And like we mentioned previously, build with the newest HTML and CSS scripts.
If you already have a couple of themes in mind, find sites that are already using them (you can find such in the testimonials section or by using WPthemedetector) and test the speed using online tools like Pingdom tools or Gtmetrix.
Is price your only concern for changing your free WordPress theme with a paid one?
Purchasing a theme won’t cost you a fortune, especially if you are running a business. For personal blogs, or people just starting, it’s ok to use free themes. Even more than ok, you should definitely use a free one.
But for people wanting to build and grow an online business, this is more like an investment. So let me give you some numbers to peace your mind.
You can find quality, fast and beautifully designed themes withing the price of $40 and $99. To be even more specific – the price is around $60.
60 bucks for a theme! Probably only one of your shirts cost more than that.
However, before you hit buy you should notice something. Some theme vendors have yearly subscription plans. Which means you will need to renewal your plan with them every year, in order to have access to regular updates and support.
And you need updates to protect your website from getting hacked. So make sure to double check what kind of obligation you are committing to, before purchasing anything: one time fee or yearly subscription.
Section 7 – Details – Sometimes you get more for your money – sometimes you don’t
As you already saw, the price for a premium WordPress theme isn’t so high, comparing to what you are getting. But what do you really get?
There are thousands for WordPress themes available for purchase, and to be absolutely sure you are getting the best product for your money, you should take a look at the little details.
Once you narrow the choices and pick a theme that you like, go to the preview section and look for these things:
Layout: Can you change the layout from Wide to Boxed. The full layout is perfect for landing pages while the boxed one can be used for your blog.
Design: Do you like the overall design of the theme? Does it also come with demos, that can be additionally added?
Premium extensions: To be more competitive, popular themes are coming along with free premium plugins included. Is the one you’ve chosen offering such?
Building pages: How are you going to build the pages? Some themes have Visual Composer plugin or other in-house page builders included. Check and see. if the one you choose has that included.
Blog section: Check if the elements below are present or can be added inside blog post: Page title; Featured image; Social Sharing buttons; Related posts; Recent posts; Call to action; About author section; Sidebars; Footer.