The famous English idiom “Beauty is only skin deep” which eludes to looking beyond the beauty of a person by understanding what their character is inside can also be applied to the world of web design. Too many people choose their website themes based on how pretty the theme looks and set themselves or their businesses up for additional expenses in the long-run because they didn’t look into the website theme’s operating components and understand how it affects their site’s operation on the web.
Some people look at premium themes and think that they are getting a bargain. But without checking the full details, the costs after purchasing the premiumwebsite theme could rocket into the hundreds or thousands of dollars. Some of the common issues that arise include:
- The website theme not being search engine friendly.
- The website theme loads too slowly.
- There are several widgets or plugins that require additional payment through subscriptions.
- The site isn’t mobile responsive.
- Support is an additional cost.
These are just a few of the issues that many website owners experience. So it is important to cross your T’s and dot your I’s before investing in a WordPress theme.
Web design agency Pixelstorm shares the following considerations when choosing a premium WordPress theme for your site.
Get more insight about the theme by checking their hosting or seller’s profile.
You can get a lot of insight into the performance and experiences with the theme by checking the hosting or seller profile of the theme. Most profiles will display:
- Users ratings and feedback
- Technical specs
- Amount of downloads or sales
In the example below, you can see the sales, ratings, reviews and commentary within one of the theme listings on Envato.
As you can see in the example, people share their experiences with the theme and they also reach out to the web theme developers with questions that will help to improve the theme in the future.
Does the theme load quickly?
To provide website users with the best experience, it’s important to select a theme that will load quickly. The web page loading time is an important factor for engaging and converting visitors to your website. The rule of thumb is that web pages should load in 2 seconds or less. Not only is it good for the experience of the website’s users, but it is also good for improving your website’s ranking on Google.
At least 40% of the website’s loading time depends on the size and functionality of the theme. By investing in the wrong theme, it is unlikely that you will be able to make the necessary changes to improve the website’s speed significantly.
Does the theme have good security?
There are people on the web that are looking for ways to hack and hijack websites on the web. It’s crucial that the theme that you invest in will have the necessary security measures to prevent hackers or the threat of malware or viruses affecting your website.
You can use services like Themecheck.org, who will provide you with a score of the website’s code. Otherwise, you should verify the code with a PHP website developer.
Check the mobile responsiveness of the theme.
More people are viewing web content on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets nowadays. Responsive themes improve users experience and engagement with the website. Check the theme to see how it responds and displays your website content.
Make sure the theme allows some customisations.
It’s important that you select a theme that will allow you to make custom changes, without affecting the performance of the theme. Sometimes, simple tasks that should only take a few minutes to implement end up taking much longer because the website theme is too rigid. For example, changing the appearance of a logo or social sharing icons.
Check to see how much the theme relies on plugins.
If the theme relies on several plugins, it’s generally a sign that the theme hasn’t been coded well. It’s not to say that the theme won’t operate as needed, however it’s likely that themes that rely on a lot of plugins will slow down the site’s speed, limit the amount of customisations that can be done by a web developer and affect the user experience of the website over the long term.
There are several premium themes available on the web, however you want to make sure that you invest in a theme that not only looks good, but will also provide the performance and support that you need.