Paid WordPress themes are becoming more and more popular, despite the fact that there are still a huge number of free themes out there for you to try. If you're wondering why anyone would pay when there's so much available for free, consider these pros and cons of paying for themes.
Pro: Remove Credit Links
Some – though not all – free themes will have footer links back to credit their original creator. This seems fair enough. After all, the designer has gone to a lot of effort to provide something completely free. But, as a user of that theme, you may feel it unprofessional to link back to certain sites. Even worse, a minority of free themes link back to random niche sites that you have no control over. Accidentally link to a site in a “bad neighborhood” and you could find yourself punished by Google.
With paid themes, you usually have the rights to remove footer credit links and avoid these issues altogether.
Paid themes are going to cost you, there's no getting around it! They can cost anywhere from $30 up to $200 for some themes with a developers license. Only you can decide whether this is worth it for your business, based on the benefits of owning the theme and its features.
Pro: Continued Support
When you choose to use paid WordPress themes you'll usually find that you're paying for upgrades in the future. WordPress is updated so frequently that certain features on themes may stop working unless they, too, are updated. Of course, you should check to make sure how many updates you're entitled to, and how reliable any theme creator may be before buying.
Creators of free themes still often update their work but, without the pressing issue of paid users waiting on them, it often takes a lot longer. And, in some cases, the author just loses interest or doesn't have time to work on the theme any more.
Con: Looking Like Everyone Else
Just because you pay money for a theme doesn't mean it's going to be unique to you. In fact, some creators of paid themes market their creations so well that you may start to notice many other bloggers using the same designs as you! This is less of a problem if you use a theme with more customizable options, as many paid themes now offer.
Pro: Extra Features & Ease Of Use
A growing trend in the world of paid themes is to include an easy-to-use options area that lets you customize a number of elements of the theme. While a free theme will usually come with a couple of color options or layouts, paid themes have a huge range of features to choose from. Some of the top paid offerings let you create ad blocks on different pages, change the navigation menus, add extra sidebars, have complete control over widths, fonts, colors and more!
Cons: More Features = More To Learn
It's true that more features can mean there's more to learn when it comes to paid WordPress themes. Although designers try to make them as newbie-friendly as possible, this isn't always possible when you consider the huge capabilities of some of these themes. However, there will usually be extensive video tutorials and forum support to get you through just about any issue you may face.
Pro: Boost Resale Value Of Your Site
There's no denying the fact that, when it comes to selling your website, paid WordPress themes are perceived to be more valuable than free ones. Simply noting that you have a paid theme, and how much it would cost to buy, will help boost the final sale value should you decide to sell your website in future.
As you can see, there really is no clear cut answer when it comes to the question of whether you should buy paid WordPress themes or not. They can be expensive, but they can also be seen as an investment that'll pay for itself down the line. It all depends on the specific needs of your website, and your own creative vision for how you'd like it to function.