The development of advanced web site management tools like the WordPress Content Management System (CMS) has effectively simplified web design and web development for anyone wanting to start a website.
This is a great thing for entrepreneurial-minded people wanting to start a website that they can easily manage themselves.
Prior to blogging and the introduction of sophisticated content management systems, if you needed a business website, you would have to wait until both the web development and website design processes were fully completed. This process could mean waiting around for weeks, even months!
The development of WordPress themes changed all this. In this article, we take a look at what themes are, how themes save your business money on web design costs, and how WordPress themes let you easily customize your WordPress site.
Revolutionary Website Design
More businesses are benefiting from a change in web design that has been going for a number of years now. If you are a business owner, you may want to know about this, because it can save you thousands of dollars on website development and website design costs.
Let’s briefly review how things worked in “traditional” website development before CMS tools like WordPress came along:
The first step would be to meet with a website development company or designer for a brief. Next, the design itself had to be discussed and agreed upon. This meant time and money being spent with a professional web designer discussing areas of the web site such as the layout, colors, formats, graphic elements, content, etc.
Each page of your web site then had to be hand-coded with your design elements and scripts coded into your content. The pages were then assembled together into a website using hyperlinks and navigation menus and uploaded to your server, together with all other files needed to make your site work – script libraries, images, media elements, etc.
Only after everything passed testing and worked the way it was intended to (and looking how a client had imagined it to look), was the web site considered to be finished and ready to go live.
The next step in the evolution of web design was the introduction of “website templates”. Website templates allow design elements of the web site to be worked on separately from content on the page. The development of ready-made templates helped to speed up the web site creation process and resulted in reduced production costs. This also allowed website designers to work with business clients with less money to spend on marketing …
(image source: www.dreamweaver-templates.org)
As the number of businesses adopting “template-based” websites increased, templates were developed that provided clients with a range of custom options, like the ability to choose different colors, styles, layouts
As websites and website building tools evolved, website templates also began to evolve into web templating ”systems”, enabling website owners and web designers to manage the design components of their web site.
Then, WordPress was developed and helped to start a new business website revolution …
(WordPress – A Content Publishing Revolution)
To learn more about content management systems and the benefits of the WordPress CMS, see the tutorial below:
The WordPress Theme
A WordPress theme drives the concept of a website templating system much further.
A WordPress theme controls and unifies the design aspects of your website. It lets you add a “skin” to your entire site much like a template system does but it gives you more control over the management, appearance and customization aspects of your template options.
As described in the official WordPress site …
A WordPress Theme is a collection of files that work together to produce a graphical interface with an underlying unifying design for a weblog. These files are called template files. A Theme modifies the way the site is displayed, without modifying the underlying software. Themes may include customized template files, image files (*.jpg, *.gif), style sheets (*.css), custom Pages, as well as any necessary code files (*.php).
As stated above, one of the unique features of the WP theme is that the way your web site appears to visitors in no way affects how your content is managed.
In simple terms, what this means is that WP themes let you change the appearance of your website as much and as often as you like without affecting your site’s content and all the functionality you’ve built into it. For example, if you have set up WP website for e-commerce, replacing the theme won’t affect the content or the functionality of the site. All e-commerce features, site and plugin settings and product information will remain intact, but your site will look completely different.
This is huge! Why?
Because when you use WordPress, you no longer have to spend weeks or months waiting for your website to be done. You can get your business website built simply and get started with any WordPress theme you like, and then completely change the look, feel and design of your site in minutes, whenever you choose … and as many times as you like!
Even better, you can easily replace any theme on your site without needing any website code editing skills. Simply choose any theme you want, install it on your site and activate it. WordPress lets you change your website design and modify elements like headers, layout, typography and more in less than a few minutes …
Since WordPress is made available as open source software, web design companies anywhere in the world can design themes specifically for the WordPress platform using the WordPress templating system.
This means that loads of great WordPress themes can be downloaded by WP users. Themes are normally distributed for Free under the terms of the GNU License Definition, or sold as Premium (paid) WP themes.
The WordPress team keeps a FREE theme directory which gives WordPress users access thousands of great themes at no cost …
(WordPress.org – Free Theme Directory)
As WordPress becomes more popular, more designers are now starting to develop themes for a wider range of users.
Themes vary from corporate-looking, to designs that are simply stunning and would typically cost thousands of dollars to develop. Surprisingly, most themes are really inexpensive to buy.
You can view several theme galleries containing stunning examples of great premium WordPress themes here:
(Browse Thousands Of FREE WordPress Themes!)
WordPress Themes – Benefits And Advantages
Here are just a few of the benefits and advantages of choosing WordPress themes over using traditional website design:
Themes are really easy to install on your site. Just upload it to your Plugin folder via your WordPress dashboard and activate. Even easier still, you can install any of the themes listed in the WP theme repository at WordPress.org) directly from your WordPress dashboard.
- WordPress has a thriving community of commercial web developers who make thousands of great-looking, high quality WP Themes available to WP users. Thousands of these themes are completely free to use!
- Themes give sites a unified and consistent “look and feel” across all the blog’s elements, i.e. pages, headers, footers, layouts, etc …
- A “theme” works independently of your web site’s content. This allows you swap WP themes as often as you like without changing the underlying content.
- Many WP themes come with additional built-in features and options that allow you to easily customize your site’s style, layout and design elements and create a unique look to suit your taste.
- Many WP themes are built using a framework that enables users to upgrade themes to newer theme versions without losing its unique customizations (e.g. CSS styles)
- WordPress lets you search, upload and install WordPress Themes automatically directly from within your dashboard.
- WordPress themes lets you save thousands of dollars on website design costs. Free WP themes cost nothing and most “Premium”themes are typically quite inexpensive.
About Responsive Themes
Many WP theme developers are now developing WordPress themes that incorporate “responsive” functionality.
A responsive theme enables websites to automatically readjust the web layout to display smoothly over different screen sizes and resolutions, as well as across different platforms) …
A responsive theme is also optimized for each device type. Users can scroll, read and load the site on various device platforms without having to resize anything, or requiring website owners to have installed additional browser tools.
Note: When purchasing WordPress themes, we recommend choosing a responsive WordPress theme. Not only will a responsive theme ensure that your web site displays well across your visitors’ devices, but it also means that the theme is newer than non-responsive themes and therefore should comply with the latest standards and practices of web design and web coding.
I hope that this article has given you a clearer overview of WordPress themes, what themes are, how themes can help your business save money, and how WordPress themes make customizing sites easy.
To learn where to search for great WordPress themes for your website or blog, go here:
"I am beyond impressed with what you have put together. I can tell that you put a ton of hard work into building what you have. You have the absolute best content on WordPress I have ever seen!" - Robert T. Jillie