WordPress powers approximately twenty three percent of all websites, it’s free and open source software, which means that it’s widely supported and very, very popular. WordPress Themes to the lay person are the designs that provide the visual design of your website and there are many wonderful free themes that you can use to build your new website or to build your blog. There are also many free responsive design themes from which you can choose from to build your website, but as with most things that are free, you often get exactly what you pay for.
Free WordPress Themes Aren’t Kept Current
Many theme designers start out designing a great looking free theme in the hopes that you’ll upgrade to their premium paid for theme. As a result most fail to regularly update their themes, which means that as WordPress is updated, as security patches to plugins are released you risk breaking your website by updating and leave the door wide open to hackers if you don’t. Not only that, you may not be able to use some of the latest and greatest plugins which increase functionality of your website.
Free WordPress Themes Often Have Poor Code
Coding any theme takes time and skill and unfortunately this costs money, this often results in shortcuts being taken with free themes to reduce development time and costs. There are often bugs in the code, it’s often coded by junior developers and it’s not as clean and professional as it could be and in a worst case scenario it could contain security loopholes.
Free WordPress Themes Don’t Offer As Many Features
In order to be competitive and to attract buyer’s attention, creators of premium themes often include numerous features into their themes that the free themes don’t offer. The premium themes often offer community support, FAQs and even one-on-one support that you won’t find with free themes. Premium themes simply work better than free ones. Developers are going to spend more time making the premium theme better to compete in the premium theme marketplace.
Free WordPress Themes Have Included Encrypted Links
Many free themes have encrypted links to ads in the footers. Some even have links to gambling and pornographic materials that you might not notice until the ads start popping up when someone is looking at your site. It’s important that you are careful where you get your free themes. Read all the fine print too because you may not have permission to change some aspects of your free theme like you can with a premium theme.
Free WordPress Themes May Actually Cost More
When you get something free, often times you will need to spend more time trying to get it to work the way you want it to. When WordPress make updates, and they will, your theme might stop working, and you’re going to have to them go on a search for a better, newer theme which may end up costing you a lot more time than you have.
Premium WordPress Themes Are Not Always Supported
I’ve actually purchased premium themes and found them to have exactly the same problems that many free themes have. They are poorly coded and support from the theme developer is none existent and upgrading WordPress will often break the theme.
Do Your Homework or Roll of the Dice
Did you know that almost eighty percent of websites fail to deliver any meaningful return on investment? If you want to be part of this eighty percent build your own website, use free themes or premium themes it won’t really matter. In fact you could use a website designer, I know of a local design agency that sells what it calls premium quality websites costing tens of thousands of dollars. The website they sell are based on WordPress themes and all they do is use elance to find a designer to develop a design concept and theme for a few hundred dollars. Their clients paying tens of thousands of dollars expect the level of service I provide but end up with something little better than a free theme.
Okay, we get it sometimes life isn’t fair and sometimes people get ripped off and use the wrong themes or wrong businesses, the best advice I can give anyone is to do your homework, check out WordPress Themes, the website designer and call any references given and ask those hard questions. Of course I would like to think anyone with a reasonable budget would speak to me, as even if I am too busy to help I can give you the contact details of someone I know that can help you.