INSIDER NEWS: Next project might be a little "morbid"...

Occasionally, a website will need to be redesigned whether you want to or not. This is most often due to the underlying software or component of the website becoming incompatible, unsupported or just plain abandoned by the developer.

This happened to my client, Adam Gibson Design, with respect to their theme. Normally, one would not anticipate being forced to redesign a website due to a WordPress theme going unsupported. This was an unusual case in that the theme used some remote Javascript to implement a portfolio feature. Once support was terminated, the portfolio functionality quit working.

Fortunately it was not a huge task to select a new theme and slightly rework the site. The lesson here is that careful selection of a theme should include consideration of the following:

  • Is the theme developer reputable?
  • How likely is the theme developer to stay in business and support their theme for the long haul?
  • Do I really need that "whiz bang" feature of a particular theme or can I design a usable and aesthetically pleasing site using a theme and only standard WordPress features?

In particular, I would caution against using a theme that implements "custom" features such as frameworks, page builders, etc. While these may be useful, they circumvent the "normal" WordPress implementations and leave you at the mercy of continued support by the developer.

This doesn't mean that some themes that implement these sorts of features aren't good themes and won't have good support, only that you carefully weigh your need for these custom implementations versus the risk of being left without support in the future.