You’ve noticed that I switched from Thesis to the Genesis WordPress Theme (affiliate link) on this site. The reason, as I’ve explained, was mostly a business decision. I wanted more access to other premium WordPress Themes. If you bought Thesis, congratulations. It’s a good theme, and I think you’ll be pleased. If you’re still considering switching to a premium WordPress theme, here are some notes.
Which Themes Do I Use?
What’s the Difference?
All three themes I’ve used are “framework” themes.
I am working on researching a few more themes, to understand what works and doesn’t, what’s recommended for one kind of service versus another. In lots of cases, what I’m finding is that some developers create themes to act like frameworks (Thesis does this one way; Genesis does it another way), whereas other themes just act as standalone solutions. The difference is that developers and designers can extend frameworks with a little extra effort but a lot less “unraveling” of how things work, whereas the standalones just make it easier for a novice to get a good effect right out of the box.
For me, I like using framework themes because I work with designers who make them turn pretty for me. For you, if you’re planning to do more of the work yourself, it might be better to do something with standalone themes that have a design built in. It’s up to you.
Should you even use a premium WordPress theme?
That’s up to you. To me, the dividing line comes with whether you’re planning something professional versus blogging for your passion and enjoyment.
What Will It Cost?
The themes above range in price from the low $50s (USD) to around $90 (USD). That just buys you the theme, though. In some cases, you might want to just tweak and poke and add your logo, and do it yourself. That’s just fine.
If you need design help (not counting a logo), expect to pay somewhere between $500 – $2000 depending on how fancy you want your design to be. (It can be more, if you do a lot of other integration work, but that’s the going rate I’m seeing these days.)
Other Premium Themes
There are plenty of other premium themes. As I start to explore more of them, I will tell you about the ones I end up using and liking. In all cases, if I find a theme I like, I’ll sign up to be an affiliate, as I think it’s a great way to make a few extra dollars while sharing products I like. Rest assured, I’ll never promote something I don’t think is worthwhile. It’s never going to be worth a few bucks to steer you into something stinky for either of us. (If you want to become a StudioPress affiliate, click here.)
Any Questions? Need a Designer?
If you’re on the fence on using a premium WordPress theme, feel free to ask questions in the comments section. I’m sure that bunches of us will have an opinion and some ideas on how to help. Need a designer? I have a few I happily refer. How else can I be helpful?