People always get confused when it comes to choosing free vs premium WordPress themes.
They often make the wrong decisions and later face the consequences.
There are thousands and millions of free and premium WordPress themes out there.
We don’t want you to make a choice that isn’t perfect for you.
That is why we have created a comprehensive guide that will answer all of your questions about free vs premium WordPress themes.
Why so much BUZZ around premium WordPress themes?
Why is everyone talking about purchasing a premium WordPress theme?
You might have heard, “when you already have a ton of themes in the WordPress theme directory, then what’s the point of buying a premium theme?”
You’ll get your answer at the end of this blog when someone asks your question like above.
BUT before you make any decision, you should better think twice.
Because the theme is the thing you can’t change repeatedly.
Don’t go blindly for a premium WordPress theme just because someone influenced you about it.
That’s why it’s important for you to Go through this guide.
We have mentioned the pros and cons of both free vs premium WordPress themes. In addition, we will give recommendations based on what is best for you.
Let’s just get started without any further delay.
Advantages Of Free WordPress Themes
If you want to use a free theme, we suggest you select your theme from the WordPress theme directory and not from any other source.
There’s a reason behind it.
Free themes are officially approved on the WordPress directory.
It goes through the strict guidelines of WordPress before it becomes available to the public.
This assures that you will be out of any trouble.
Let’s explore what could be the benefits of using a free WordPress theme.
Free Of Cost:
You have got the entire theme store just install whatever theme you like.
It doesn’t matter how many times you installed and uninstalled the theme.
It just has been designed for the purpose to let beginners test new themes.
Remember, you should completely avoid the themes which are from unreliable sources.
Many think that free themes are trash and don’t suit the professional business.
But the truth is, there’s nothing like that.
Many businesses like littlelittlesteps have been running with the free theme without any problem.
Easy To Use:
Another benefit of using free themes is its ease.
Usually, beginners will find no trouble using this theme.
When it comes to plugins, these free themes are easily compatible.
Simple & Minimal Design:
Free themes are very simple and minimal because they don’t contain many features and widgets.
These free themes are perfect for those who are starting their personal blog or want to make a portfolio.
The benefit of having a free theme is that it loads faster and performs better due to its fewer functionalities.
Straight From WordPress:
All the free WordPress themes go through the strict review process. These themes are followed by the WordPress guidelines before they get approved.
There’s a dedicated team behind this who evaluates the themes. They only add to the directory if the theme matches certain criteria.
SO what are those criteria?
Here we have mentioned some of their fundamental principles.
- First and foremost, they check how safe the theme is. The theme won’t approve if the developer has missed any security-related steps.
- They also check whether your theme is based on any illegal activity.
- Not only that but also, the themes should comply with the standard code quality and WordPress features.
Disadvantages Of Free WordPress Themes
However, if there are pros then there are cons too.
With free themes, you can’t get everything. There are a lot of things you will have to compromise.
Let’s find out what could be the disadvantages if you opt for a free WordPress theme.
The majority of the free themes have tons of downloads.
There are a vast number of people who have applied the same theme for their website as yours.
Moreover, make the theme unique by customizing it also a bad idea since there are also very limited options to customize.
Lack Of Support:
If you face some issues regarding your theme, then forget about any assistance you will get from the developer.
Though, you will always get help from WordPress support. But still, they are not bound to give answers to your specific queries.
Besides, there are other options too to rely on such as, you can get some help from social media by connecting to people.
Another option is that you can HIRE a developer to solve your issues.
Moreover, there’s no guarantee that you will receive a quick reply or solution.
Free themes don’t mean that they come with no features. However, free themes have the standard WordPress features.
But when it comes to some extra, none of the free WordPress themes offer unique features.
If you download any free theme from a third-party source (off WordPress directory) then you are compromising your security.
Don’t make such a mistake!
You don’t know how the code was formatted in the theme. It could be buggy that can ruin the whole user experience.
Pros Of Premium WordPress Themes
Same as free themes, there are a plethora of premium block WordPress themes that are readily available at third-party marketplaces.
Unlike free themes that provide limited customization, with premium themes you can tailor your theme according to your needs.
You can customize a theme with all your imagination. It will totally be your product that’s nowhere to be seen.
Premium themes come with loads of features.
Here are some of the best premium theme features that can’t be found on free WordPress themes.
- Premium themes are 100% responsive. Your users won’t face any issues exploring your site on their mobile devices.
- SEO friendliness is another viral aspect. Premium themes will help your site rank higher in Google SERPs (search engine result pages).
- However, if you are investing in premium themes, you will definitely get well-structured and commented code.
- You will get what you pay for. 24/7 customer service available to you. You will receive the solution right at that moment.
- Premium themes are retina-ready, which means you will get high-resolution icons that will look outstanding on high-density Retina displays.
- That said, premium themes offer loads of demos and layout options to choose from. So you can get whatever your requirement is.
These were just a few and essential ones. The list could be a long one.
Compatible With Various Browsers:
You don’t know from which browsers your users come from.
You need to make sure that your theme should be compatible with their browsers.
Having a premium theme will give you an edge over a free theme in terms of browser compatibility.
Premium themes run smoothly on the browsers like Chrome, Edge, Safari, and more.
Cons Of Premium WordPress Themes
It’s better to check the theme twice before making a purchase.
Sometimes developers tend to make mistakes which can be seen in a theme.
Below are some of the disadvantages of premium themes.
- Choose a theme that has only useful features because sometimes developers add features that aren’t even necessary.
It will do nothing except making your site load slow.
Hence, only pay for what you actually need.
- Moreover, many themes have been poorly coded which you might not get an idea of in the first place.
But later on, you will face some issues like the theme will not support some of the plugins.
You could find more problems too.
Therefore, it is advisable to refer to the reviews before you hit the purchase button.
Always purchase from reliable theme providers who are experts in fulfilling your requirements & giving an error-free experience.
When To Use Free WordPress Themes?
If you want to use a free WordPress theme and don’t know for what purpose, then here’s the answer for that.
You should ONLY USE free themes:
- If you don’t care about your site, it looks similar to other sites.
- Aso, if your sole purpose is to write personal blogs and don’t require much functionality, go with the free themes.
- In addition, if you are familiar with WordPress and know debugging then you can easily run your site without any assistance.
- However, if you want your site to be exclusive to yourself or want a basic portfolio that you can represent to your clients.
These are some of the cases in which you can use free WordPress themes.
That being said, if your requirements are higher and you want something out of the box then invest in a premium WordPress theme.
Speaking of premium themes, the next point will address the benefits of having a premium theme.
When To Use Premium WordPress Themes?
If you are not satisfied with what free themes offer then you definitely go with the premium theme.
With just a few extra bucks, you will have every functionality you wanted and run your site smoothly.
These are a couple of reasons when you should opt for a premium WordPress theme.
- If you want your website that looks different and highly appealing then choosing a premium theme will get you this for sure.
- Buy a premium theme if you are in need of some features that could be very essential for your website.
- Moreover, if your GOAL is something to set up your whole business professionally like an eCommerce store in the upcoming time.
- Also, if you need dedicated support that can fix your problems right away, then the premium theme is your right option.
Free Vs Premium WordPress Themes: Which Option Would Be Best For You?
We have covered everything you need to know about free vs premium WordPress themes.
Now it is all up to you.
There’s nothing wrong to choose a free WordPress theme, just ensure to select the free theme from the WordPress theme directory.
You just need to identify your requirements, and you are good to go.
If you want nothing fancy and just want to keep it minimal to yourself then go with the free themes.
If you want some bells and whistles and you want to make a good amount of sales then the premium theme is your choice.
However, we would suggest that you go for a premium theme, because if you invest in a premium theme, then its returns are IMMENSE.
We hope your doubts may have been cleared related to free vs premium WordPress themes.
If it’s cleared, then do share your words with us in the comments and let us know which theme you’re starting up with.