Template Themes

The Good

Quick and usually pretty easy. Your site can be installed and configured within a week if your content is ready use.
Code. Some templates have clean code, meaning the HTML and CSS are compliant and up-to-date. It depends on the theme you choose though. Stay away from free themes, they won’t work with widgets over time.
Budget friendly. Oftentimes, you can have a theme installed for free if you know what you are doing and are confident enough to understand some of the basic requirements. Or, for a few hundred dollars, you can have a professional install and configure the website (add your logo, change out colors, setup the widgets).
Clean, Modern Designs. There are some really nice themes out there now. It is not like it used to be. I remember the old HTML themes with bloated code and heavy graphics. You can find some really great themes out there.

The Bad

Locked. With a template you are typically locked into a design and configuration. If you choose a theme, make sure it has page options like sidebars, full-page width, and header configurations for your logo and/or slogan.
Code. A template can be bloated with code and heavy plugins to make it work as you see the demo work. It is important that your website be lean and load fast.
Support. Support for the themes can be limited. If a theme conflicts with a plugin, your theme developer may not be responsive. Choose premium themes with good support to prevent issues later on down the road. Send and ask a question to monitor their response time then check their support forums for activity.
Security risks. Some themes, especially free themes, have ‘dirty’ code meaning the template contains harmful or malicious coding (security holes) placed there by the author or a hacker. Hidden or missing code can wreak havoc on your WordPress site, and when a hacker gets in… you’re in big trouble. Be sure to buy a premium theme from a reputable company.
Custom WordPress Themes
So say that your company has specific requirements for features and branding. That your brand is too important to leave to a predesigned theme and that you have features that cannot be found without doing some custom work. Don’t be confused by a design that is simply a modification of an existing premium WordPress theme. Truly custom WordPress themes are coded specifically for the company and its complexity. But, as with templates, custom designs have their positives and their drawbacks.

Custom Themes

The Good

Versatility. Starting from scratch and getting all the features you need and desire allows for greater flexibility. We start with wire framing then we pull out Photoshop and send you designs that we collaborate on. Designs are only limited by your imagination.
Branding. A custom design is specifically branded to your company with your colors, target market, and goals.
Specific Needs. Arrange widgets and functionality within the theme while still using a unique layout and format.
Uniqueness. As with any company, a custom design will set you apart from the rest and stand out from the competitors. With a predesigned theme, you run the risk of looking like the rest.
Search Engine Optimization. Clients want their site friendly to Google and Bing. Since Search engines score on uniqueness of code as well as content, your custom theme is always the better choice.

The Bad

Investment. A custom WordPress theme can be cost prohibitive if you are just starting out. I sometimes recommend to my clients that they understand their budget as they will need to do more marketing after the site is live. Can they afford the time and money? A custom web design is an investment I remind them.
Time. It can take some time to build a custom theme; from 4 – 10 weeks depending on how complicated the site is.
Either way, WordPress is a solid framework created from a reputable WordPress development core with great support, updatability, community, etc. and you’ll also get the custom elements you’re after too. I offer WordPress hosting for both http://domainnamesuggestions.info/.

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