When I think of getting a project up and running (my main skill is programming rather than design) I tend to look towards premium themes as a massive time saver.
I buy an awesome bells-and-whistles pre-made theme from somewhere like ThemeForest for $60 or so and then mould it into the website I had planned in my head. Cutting out the demo content and moving sections around before finally adding my Alex Magic™ in the form of plugins to make the site do what I want it to.
The problem with this Swiss army knife method is that you are left with the supporting code for parts of the theme you didn’t use. You could go through and try to cut it out but thats easier said than done…. plus this theme was supposed to save time!
Have you ever visited a website and found that the pages load dead slow? It makes you want to hit the back button and find a faster alternative to solving your problem. Well, Google has noticed that too.
So instead of sending you to a website that is slow and annoying, they are more likely going to send you to a competing result.
They measure this by scanning your website frequently and recording the time it takes to download a page. Google may also use the behaviour of the visitors it sends to you, watching to see if they bounced quickly and came back for a different result.
For a more in depth look at page speed and SEO you can read about it on MOZ. For more info on WordPress themes and SEO read on:
Lets take a look at some of the popular themes for sale right now and test the for speed. I’m using Pingdom to test the page size and speed.
A multipurpose, best selling WordPress theme from ThemeForest.
The images (which you do have easy control over) make up 2.7mb of the page size but HTML, CSS and JS make up around 0.7mb.
Another multi-purpose WordPress theme (great value as you can use it many times for different projects) that’s ThemeForest’s second best selling WP theme.
Similar to Avada above, The 7 theme had 700kb of scripts to download to view a page when you subtracted the images.
Our last test is on BeTheme, the third biggest selling theme on ThemeForest right now. Another massive multi-purpose theme with hundreds of demos to be inspired from.
The home page download size was actually better than the first two themes here, being only 540kb once you subtract the images.
With UnderStrap being so geared towards the minimalist approach we attract a lot of SEO enthusiasts who want fast websites that rank well. The problem is that they then realise the massive task they have taken on, starting with a bare framework like UnderStrap and then failing to complete their project due to time constraints.
So we decided to come up with a fix for this problem:
Our OverStrap child themes pack were created in-house using the same fundamental ideas as UnderStrap, fast and minimal – in design and functionality.
We wanted something that developers could take and save themselves hours of time on projects with. You have a good looking site template straight out of the box that you can build on or use to create fast themes to sell.
Currently the pack has the 5 following flavours:
The page size has been kept down to a minimum while still looking modern and clean. The themes all have an optional customisation framework so they can be fully editable in the /wp-admin/ area of your (or your clients) site without having to edit code.