The Pros and Cons of Premium WordPress Themes

WordPress, no doubt, is one of the most powerful website engines. Owing to the sudden rise of the platform, it has become possible for tech-savvy people to now create their own online business websites by using professional WordPress templates in no time.

To put up a finely tuned, detailed site is not a big deal anymore, all thanks to the WordPress theme providers who produce the simplest and most elegant of layouts to satisfy various personal and business needs.

Why it’s so popular

Why do you think WordPress is so popular? One of the biggest reasons behind its fame is the extensive collection of the themes available on the internet. With these themes and a few drag and drop features, you can easily customize your site in whichever way you desire.

When choosing a theme for your domain, you have two basic options: either pick a free theme or buy a premium one. But is it a good idea to invest in these WordPress themes? Let’s discuss.


The perks of paid themes

Paid WordPress themes are becoming popular by the day. Below are some of the important ‘pros of premium themes’ explaining why anyone would pay for them despite a large number of free templates available on the internet.

1. Features

The main reason behind choosing a premium theme is the unique features they offer. Most of the templates have an inbuilt admin panel, where everything in the front-end can be controlled within a few minutes.

Custom content sliders, social media support, and SEO features are the major attractions of any premium theme.

2. Routinely updates

To keep your website out of harm’s way, stay updated on stringent security features, the most recent design trends or fix bugs via latest security updates.

3. The design

The design factor is quite common in all premium themes. So, in case you’re planning to brand your website, it is recommended to use a paid template. They offer differing layouts with a plethora of color schemes, hence, based on your requirements, the feel and overall look of the website can be changed quite easily.

4. Remove credit links

Some free themes have footer links that point back to their developers. This seems fair since the designer has put in a lot of hard work to provide something of value to users that also happens to be free.

As a user, you may feel it’s unprofessional to be led back to specific sites. An accidental link to a site in a ‘bad neighborhood’ and you may find yourself in Google’s hot waters.

However, with paid WordPress templates, you can remove footer credit links, avoiding these issues altogether.

5. Boost resale value of your site

When it comes to selling your website, paid WordPress themes, undoubtedly, come in handy. Simply knowing that your website is built using a paid theme will boost e-commerce link building; this will also increase sale value, whenever you decide to sell the website in the future.

6. Continued support

When you choose to use paid WordPress themes, you will find yourself paying for future support and upgrades as well. WordPress is updated so frequently that certain options may not function unless they, too, are updated. Make sure to check how many updates your site is entitled to, and how reliable the theme creator is before purchasing a template.

Free theme creators also update their work but it usually takes much longer for them to do so without any pressing paid users waiting for the updates.

Also, well-known theme companies like DIYThemes and StudioPress help their consumers write tutorials on their official blogs to help other users.


The mis-perks of Premium/Paid WordPress themes

Some users might think there are little to no disadvantages of using premium themes, but this is not true. Mentioned ahead are the major cons of using ‘bought in’ WordPress themes.

1. No concrete guarantee

Every premium theme claims ‘life time support’. Recently, some theme clubs like PliablePress got crushed due to personal reasons. Therefore, it is important to survey the background profile and community of any theme club from which you’re planning to purchase a template.

2. Crossing over plugins domain

Sometimes WP themes can cross over into the plugin domain, offering irrelevant features that disappear as soon as you switch the theme. For instance, creating custom post types and shortcodes – extra functionalities that are not supposed to be offered.

Nowadays, extra functionality is packed into plugins which are installed together with the theme, to provide the full experience you see in a demo. You can read more about this here.

3. Lack of official review process

The developer of paid themes can potentially ignore the policies and practices of WordPress. Over time, this could turn into a big problem. For example, a theme can be incompatible with some plugins.

4. Slow loading speed

In order to sell more themes, developers can add too many unnecessary features. As a user, you probably might never use all those options, but they’re still making your website slow. For example, as a first-time view, the average load time of a site on the Techmeme Leader board was 11.42 seconds – way too protracted for a commonly used domain.

5. The high cost

Since paid WP themes are not free to use, the users must get a license to use them, with varying prices for different themes. Therefore, it is recommended to check the demo and features of paid options before proceeding with purchase. Plus, it is not possible to get several themes if you have a limited budget.

6. More features means more learning

Coming across extra features in paid WordPress themes means more learning needs to be done to make proper use of them. When you begin considering the huge capabilities of the templates, developing newbie-friendly domains become almost impossible. There will, however, be extensive video tutorials available online to help you get through just about any problem you may face.


Know what you’re buying

It is important to remember that while you’re buying a WordPress theme, you are not hiring that theme shop to set it up for you. Neither do you have an exclusive license nor does the developer offer any warranty. Most reliable theme shops will give you access to their files, where you can get more help if needed. This preferential support is exactly what you’re paying for. Any good theme shop chosen should have a great support system and have help available for you to set up your website efficiently.


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Audrey Thorne

Audrey Throne is a mother of a 2-year old and a professional blogger by choice. Throne is passionate about health, technology and management and blogs frequently on these topics. After completing her masters in English Literature from the University of Birmingham, she got associated with the Accelq Team. Find her on Twitter @audrey_thorne