How to choose the best template for your website and not to be overwhelmed.

This is a guest post by Anastasia Pirog from TemplateMonster.  TemplateMonster is a premium theme / template marketplace where you can buy an new look and feel for your website, take it away Anastasia where shel tells us How to choose the best template for your website – Neil

How to choose the best template for your website and not to be overwhelmed.

Building a website is quite a hard task. And even if you decided to choose a ready solution and pick up a nice template it can be not as easy as you might think. A huge variety of marketplaces and the themes they offer can be quite overwhelming for the newcomers as well as for the professional developers. So what should you do to pick a worthy template? Here you can find a little tutorial on how to find the winning template. So let’s have a look:

Step 1 – The CMS

So the first thing you face when visiting the template marketplace is the variety of themes and platforms they are based on. The basic thing you have to decide on while building a website is what CMS you need. If you are if you’re an experienced developer or just know what you already need, you can miss this step. I won’t write a lot here. The thing you need to understand is that everything depends on your requirements. There’s no right or best CMS, each has its own advantages. I’ll just say that if you are a beginner, and that’s why you are probably reading this paragraph, or you just want a convenient and easy in use website that will let you set your resource on your own – WordPress is for you. It’s convenient and with it, you can build a website that will suit different requirements from personal to huge corporate resources.

Step 2 – Free or Premium

The other crucial question that bothers the minds of lots of people is whether they should choose a free or premium template for their resource. Today, there are a lot of marketplaces that sell premium themes like TemplateMonster or share the freebies like WordPress.org. The advice that I’m giving is straightforward. Once again I’ll say that everything depends on what you need. If it’s your first website or you just want to create a website where you will share the stuff you like with your friends or like-minded people, than a free template will be just the thing to feel the water of website building. Though if you want to create something professional and serious or to have earnings from it, you should invest money in your website, so a premium template is just the thing. The premium themes often have better design and quality. I’m not telling that free themes are worse. But chances that you’ll spend more effort and energy while searching for a great free template are higher compared to searching for the paid resource. Here’s when the rule of “no money, no honey” works.

Step 3 – Working with the marketplace

So you know what CMS you need, decided on your budget and design. You go to the marketplace, you see all those templates. And you get confused. Seems familiar? I think so! It’s a situation almost everyone faces.

So what should you do? Just think of the website you want and choose something.

  • Use the search for your template


Each of the marketplaces has a convenient form of the search. If you know exactly what you want from your website, just type the name of the needed feature or product type in the search form or find the categories menu and choose the one that suits your needs. If not, just start with such things as the kind of your website.

  • Stick to your sphere


Today web designers and developers create templates for certain spheres. What is good about each template, is that by adding your content and changing the images you can create something completely different. What is good about the thematical template, is that someone has already thought about how the website should look like. The visual language and structure of a corporate website are different from the personal website, one needs more texts, the other one – more images. So if someone has already created a layout that you need – why not to get a profit out of it? It’s when you have to go back to the previous statement. Use the search.

  • Think of the needs of your stuff and your clients.


While building a website and choosing a template think what are the best things for presenting your content. And what is more important, think about your clients. If you are in their place and visit a website like yours, what do you want to see there? If it’s a news website – choose a template with convenient archive structure and search, for an online store – choose a template with convenient navigation, notable call-to-action buttons, image content for presenting your products in the best way, this list can be continued.

  • The design


The design of templates is versatile. And of course, each man to his taste. But you surely need to consider certain things. Of course, choose the template that you like most of all.  The great thing about the template is that a lot of marketplaces let you use stock photos in the package. So if you don’t have to impress your website users with your own images, you can easily leave the template the way you choose it. From the things you should pay attention to, the next are the ways to customize the design. Look how the structure can change, what you can do with the footer and header, how you can change your content, how the size of images can change, if there are any fonts and variants of texts. Pay a lot of attention to the color schemes. It’s great if the template has a color switcher, and you can easily change your website. If not, look at the color the designer used for the template. Here everything depends on your needs, choose subtle colors for official websites, and more vivid colors for websites that will serve for another purpose.

  • Usability


This is one of the needed technical characteristics you have to bear in mind while choosing your website design. The template should be easy for you to set it, so that later your website would be convenient for your clients to navigate through. That’s why look at the customizer first. And make sure that you understand how to use and set your template. Look through all the pages of the template, and choose the one which doesn’t require you to think long where to click to get there or how you can find that information.

Look at the features that are listed in the template. And choose the template that will suit your needs. Look at the framework that developer used for the template, and consider what you need. If you want to focus on the presentation of the media content, look at the features like video or audio integration, if you want to build an international website, look at the translation feature.

The features that will suit any website are:  responsive design and cross-browser compatibility. These features will ensure that your website will scale to fit any screen of any device and work in all of the browsers. The useful thing is that marketplaces allow searching a template by the links to one or several specific features, so if you think that your website will need a certain option, just click on it, and you will get the list of template from which you can choose.

Some marketplaces offer you a trial period. Look, if your template provides this kind of service. Does it have such a period? Give it a try, then!

  • Listen what people say


The marketplaces have useful things such as clients’ testimonials and ratings. If you still don’t know where to start, try to look at the bestsellers or templates with the highest ratings. If you choose several templates or know what you want, look at the testimonials or reviews of the people who have used these items already. There you can find some useful information about how this template really works, if there are any bugs or if it’s worth buying at all.  

Step 4 – Enjoy your website!

It not so easy to choose a template, but you can do it. Decide on what you want from your website. Don’t be confused by the variety of themes, look for certain things, choose the template that will suit all your needs, customize it with ease, and get your astonishing website going. Enjoy!
It’s very easy to get overwhelmed with a wide range of themes in the marketplaces. Each day there are new items appearing. Things you are looking for have to be are the best design and features for your website. The thing that wasn’t said here is the price. I won’t tell you about the price. This is what you should decide for yourself. Obviously, if you have a big budget, it’s better to spend some money on your website. The key rule is to know what you want for your online resource. You should keep calm, and choose the template that will suit all your needs. And all will work!

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