Pro themes are a great way to create a WordPress based website from scratch. In minutes you got design, backend and content working and all you had to deliver was a server, $50 and a ThemeForest account. I will explain how this can affect your business and screw up your career big times.
Tactic 1: Hurt your brand
Nothing is worse than a company that doesn’t stand out from the crowd. What’s even worse is to look like 10-1000 websites out there. Let’s face it: when you take a theme for $50, it should be beautiful.
The most beautiful themes are always the ones that are downloaded the most. So you got a fair chance that a few dozen websites are using your companies theme. Maybe even in your category of business. What would your client say if he sees that you’re using the same design as someone else? Or maybe the same design as your competitor? Being just one of the crowd can hurt your brand big time and should be avoided at all cost.
Tactic 2: Make less money
Pro themes look great. So does the Mona Lisa. So why can’t you use the Mona Lisa to make advertisings for fashion or cookies? Because she is a finished piece of art.
Made for exactly this purpose: looking great with no other intention. Pro themes are like the Mona Lisa. They are finished and probably not with you company-goal in mind. You can try to collage some fancy hipster-beard on the Mona Lisa but in the end it will look like a ripoff and that’s what people will see and feel.
You can try to collage some fancy hipster-beard on the Mona Lisa but in the end it will look like a ripoff and that’s what people see and feel.
They will have less trust and will choose the competition. Contact-options in the wrong area, no way to show a map in the mobile-version: pro themes are a great way to make compromises that will keep your users away from sales and contact.
Tactic 3: Spend more money
Pro themes are great. They are awesomely built and heck do they have options! But all options are limited in some ways. Like I said before: pro themes don’t have your companies goals in mind.
They are just there, sitting and waiting for you to choose a color and a Google Font. At some point your boss will ask you to add some really awesome new thing like a floatable share-button on the right side of every post (these things are common).
Now the fun part starts! Ask a developer to step inside a completely different code that he is used to and maybe not meant to be seen. Maybe the theme doesn’t support child-themes or isn’t made to be edited. Your developer or yourself will be sitting hours editing, testing, trying to implement something in a theme that’s not intended to be there and hoping for the pro-theme-developer to reply to your questions because you were not able to understand his code or theme-structure. If you want to spend more money later in the project, pro themes are for you. They are a great way to sell little initial costs and big maintenance costs to your boss!
Bonus Tactic: Hurt your company
Not everyone wants to drive his company forward. Not everyone has big goals or visions like, for example, Steve Jobs did. These people just stick to the numbers and are proud to save the company a budget full of web design and development for something that could bring success and something that could stand out.
I know that getting that budget isn’t always easy and I know that bigger things lead to bigger things but a $50 pro theme isn’t part of that vision. Try to think in a long haul and keep your companies directions in mind. Your personal website should be worth more than $50 and a bunch of problems.
How do you think about pro themes? Do you use them? Let me know in the comments, I am looking forward to your feedback!