Premium WordPress Themes
Premium WordPress themes are are professionally designed themes – a better choice because you get a quality theme.
Premium Theme Advantages
A good theme designer will keep up with the frequent WordPress updates and make sure their theme works with every update, and if it doesn’t work for some reason, you can bet they’re looking for a fix.
I’ve never seen a premium WordPress theme break after updating, whether it’s a plugin update or the WordPress core update.
Premium WordPress themes are coded better, and will work with most plugins out of the box.
If a theme does not work properly then you have access to all kinds of help resources that you don’t have with free themes.
Free Theme Disadvantages
With the tons of free themes available, why would someone spend good money on a premium WordPress theme? Yes, there are some great free themes out there (that you could spend days searching for) but, most of the time, free themes come with a price. And that price isn’t always pretty.
Most free themes require you to link back to a site. I personally don’t have a problem with this, if it is the web developers’ site. No problem here – in fact, I’m happy to give the link! Backlinks are important to SEO and hard work to build. So if I help a web designer with driving a bit of traffic – maybe giving him/her some business, great! I don’t even have a problem if the link doesn’t go to the designer. If the link fits the theme of my site, I’m ok with it.
Free themes: Security issues
Unfortunately, there are some unscrupulous folks out there offering free WordPress themes. They require a link back too, and you might find yourself linking back to some not so hot websites – like prescription drugs, porn or gambling sites. These links are embedded and there is no way to remove them easily.
(I saw one theme this week that had hundreds of links in the footer, and these links were cycled through, a different link came up every time the page was hit or refreshed. Made for some ugly coding!)
You may have fallen in love with a theme and might be tempted to ignore the links in the footer just to use it, but you could be damaging your site search engine wise. In order to force you to keep the links intact, and to keep you from removing them, web designers will encrypt the links with code. If you try to remove the code, the theme will break.
You can see some of this encryption here:
Some code may not be well written and could open a back door in your theme or WordPress install – and leave you vulnerable to a hack or two. I’ve never seen encrypted code with a reputable premium WordPress theme design.
Bad design and no support
Another drawback to free WordPress themes: support and really bad design. Some designers simply don’t care if their code breaks, or a theme doesn’t work with a plugin. They won’t support this, either. If you try to contact them (if there is a way to contact them) – they may never respond back.
A free theme may never get updated. This isn’t a good thing because WordPress is constantly coming out with updates.
If you’re using a free blog theme that never gets updated, you may find that it suddenly doesn’t work after the next update,or maybe after you’re updated or added a new plugin. Time to find a new theme.
The choice is yours. There are plenty of reasons to select a premium WordPress theme instead of choosing a free theme.
There is a downside to using a premium WordPress theme for your blog: cost. But the benefits of having a support system, some built in SEO functionality, and most important: a great looking blog; is be worth your while in the long run.
Check out some premium WordPress themes here and stand out from the crowd!