Selecting a theme can be a tough job, especially when there are both free wordpress themes and premium themes available in the market. As a beginner, you may be confused with the question – when there are free themes available for use, why use paid themes?
Well, free themes are amazing simply because they are free. However, there are some demerits of using free wordpress themes. If there wasn’t, people wouldn’t have gone paying for premium themes.
I’m not saying free themes are bad but the late updates or even no updates may deter you from using them. You can find many free themes in the WordPress theme directory but the developers of these themes might not update these with the latest technology or might not fix the bugs and loopholes in the free theme. This is because these kind of free themes are mainly used for project purposes while the developer may release a pro version of that same theme with all issues fixed.
However, this is not the case with all developers. So, you really need to keep your eyes open when looking for free themes.
Let’s do a comparison between the two so that you can decide which one to go for and take the decision yourself.
WordPress is updating their technology every few months. You need to keep your themes and plugins compatible with the latest version of WordPress.
And it is the responsibility of the theme development company or rather I may say the framework company to upgrade the theme and make it compatible with the latest version of WordPress.
However, not all free wordpress themes are updated or they may take months to update it. This is because it’s a side project of the company.
On the other hand, premium themes are updated frequently or as and when WordPress releases an update. This way, you’re able to always remain compatible and ensure that your site is always running.
So instead of wasting your time on the technical hassles of the theme, it is wise to do what you are best at: Blogging, Marketing, Promoting and finally making money.
How many times has it happened that you’ve got stuck in the middle of the installation or there is an error code and you’re unable to fix it?
If you are using a free theme, you won’t get any support from the company that has released the theme.
On the other hand, premium themes offer full support to any kind of questions you might have because along with the price of the theme, they have also included their charges for the time they might need to support you.
The features you will get in free wordpress themes are limited compared to premium themes. If you want to get a specific feature, either you need to have high technical knowledge of coding or you may need to get in touch with the developer personally.
Themes play a major role in the optimization of your site for the search engine. Free wordpress themes are not SEO-optimized, so you will need to use plugins in order to make it optimized. Besides, the loading time of a free theme is generally higher, which affects the performance of the site.
On the other hand, premium themes such as Genesis, Theme Junkie, and Thesis are fully SEO-optimized and loads much faster. This gives a positive impression, thus search engines starts ranking your site higher than your competitors that are slower.
5. Hidden Links
The worst thing about free wordpress themes that I hate the most is making the footer of the theme encrypted and in this way selling their links. This creates are bad impact on search engines.
If the footer wasn’t encrypted, you could have used the footer of the theme for various purposes such as for subscription, category selection or whatever you liked.
On the other hand, premium themes do not use any encryption on their themes and you can fully customize it according to your will.
Don’t think that premium themes cost a lot. It starts from $20 to thousands of dollars, depending on your requirement.
So, which do you think is a better choice – free wordpress themes or paid themes? Do you know any demerits of free themes or even of paid themes?