WordPress… How To Make Yours Better

WordPress… How To Make Yours Better

I recently purchased a Premium WordPress theme, that I have had my eye on for awhile, the theme is
named WPRemix. As an owner of several other Premium themes, I justified the purchase from the point of view that more design options can’t be a a bad thing. Besides I had heard so much about Remix that my curiosity had finally gotten the better of me. The purchase price .00 for a single use
license was in line with most other themes also claiming to be “Premium” in nature.

At the home site for WPRemix the marketing hype makes some pretty bold claims, that I was eager to
put to the test. Here is the main tagline’s claim to potential customers:

“Bundled with more than 50 strategically designed & coded custom static page templates, the theme
enables everyone to publish small sites in minutes saving weeks of time, maintaining top notch
standards-compliant quality.”

50 templates, that’s right 10 Home Pages, 20 Inner site Pages, 5 Gallery type pages, 5 product pages
and 5 miscellaneous specialty pages. If you do the math, that comes to actually 45 pages. with some
fudging of the numbers, I guess you could also include a Blog Page which WordPress creates and a Contact page which  a plug-in might also create bringing the template count up to 47 total, still shy 3+ templates of “more than 50”.

Though technically not pages, the theme also ships with 4 headers, 6 sidebars and an optional footer. If you counted these additional files the total template count rises to 57. This small caveat is only an observation that I made and not so critical a point considering that most other WordPress themes come with only a “Home” page and a “Blog” page. The shear number of templates that Remix includes is where it’s true strength lies. It’s not just the number of templates, but the careful selection and design that went into them.

As you study the templates closely, the subtle considerations that went into the layout and extensive CSS cross-browser compliant styling becomes apparent. With Remix it is difficult to create a new page style or design that has not already been included. This translates directly into a shorter site development time when creating new websites. The diversity and flexibility of the CSS styling is as if someone poured out a large box of “LEGO” parts on the floor in front of you from which anything imaginable could be created. Anyone that has designed more than a few websites will tell you to never re-invent the wheel. Cutting and pasting CSS snippets of code here and there is common practice when coming up with new site designs.

Because WordPress provides a WYSIWYG visual design tab under which to work, a false sense of simplicity can develop for those who know little of CSS (Cascading Style Sheets). And this as it turns out is the biggest complaint regarding the Remix theme. However, it is all a matter of perspective as to how valid this complaint is. WordPress by default fosters an industry attitude that anyone who can read and type can design a website. This simply is not true, otherwise there wouldn’t be an HTML tab just to the right of the visual tab in the WordPress editor. Obviously as human beings we all tend to ask for more than we can digest once we gain enough knowledge to be dangerous. Anyone who expects to be adding rich media such as audio and video to their sites in WordPress should also be prepared to get their feet wet with at least a basic understanding of CSS and HTML. I have seen discussions on the support forum mention that the theme is better suited for experienced developers. I don’t entirely agree with this statement. If you use the theme templates as they are, without imagining all sorts of things you would like to do but don’t possess the knowledge to accomplish, a perfectly presentable professional website can be created by most end users. Still, The theme is a great time saver for those who understand CSS and a bit more daunting for those who may need to brush up on their CSS and HTML.

Of course, all of the standard bells and whistles one would expect to find are present and accounted for in the functionality of the Remix theme. RSS Feeds, Subscribe by FeedBurner email forms, sharing and bookmarking, a site search field, Testimonials and much more. There are unique specialty pages that provide for tabbed and slider presentation of information. You will be hard pressed to imagine much more than has already been thought of in Remix. One last important observation regarding this theme is, Remix is the only theme that currently offers a “Website” with a “Blog”. When you check out other themes you will notice that they will typically only have a “Landing/Home” page and a “Blog” page. I have designed sites using Remix that have actually been “De-Blogged”, as stand-alone websites. This capability alone, should give even the most discerning potential customer a reason to look at Remix a bit closer, before making any other theme purchase.

Finally, the Remix theme has a support forum which stands behind the product. I found the forum support a bit different than most other forums. It seems to be modeled more after a private technical support forum than an open discussion format where any and everything is discussed. This has never prevented me from getting answers to my questions regarding the theme. I actually observed response times of less than an hour in many instances when a question had been asked. I noticed that the moderator will tactfully redirect you to support links if you do not ask questions directly related to the theme, i.e., do not expect to get support for setting up Google Analytics at the Remix forum.

For anyone looking to shorten website design time and the most bang for the buck, you might want to check out the Remix theme. It is long on choices and options and maybe a bit longer on learning curve as well. But for those  willing to learn a little CSS and HTML, the return on the investment is well worth the effort. Check it out WordPress Remix

Former Big 3 employee turned internet marketing & SEO pro. Currently, reviewing several online programs: http://jason-gilmore-recommends.com/blog

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