How to choose a WordPress theme for your next project ?

Learn the simple trick to choose WordPress themes for projects

When you start a new project there is always a question of whether to go for a commercial WordPress theme or a custom built WordPress theme. And if you choose commercial theme then there is a question of which WordPress theme to choose.

It is important to realize the demands of the project and based on the requirements every project might have a best possible outcome.

Here’s a simple trick which I follow for deciding custom vs commercial and then which commercial theme to pick. Naturally every project has a deadline and everyone loves if the projects can be finished on time or even better before time.

The trick is called : Effort vs Time Matrix and it involves mathematical way of presenting the best result. I love maths, because it makes everything quantifiable and easier to decide. Of course a lot of this is based on assumptions like:

Assumptions :

  • Developer expertise level is similar for all the options in consideration
  • Project difficulty and deadline is same for all the options
  • Communication efforts are included in effort level.


Best Result the Lower the better.                                            

Theme Type                                      Effort                       Time         BEST RESULT

Free Theme (FT)                                      10                                10                  100

Popular Commercial Theme (PCT)      6                                  5                    30

New Commercial Theme   (NCT)           7                                 4                     28

Custom Built Theme  (CBT)                    5                                 2                     10


So, here we can see that the Custom Built Themes are always better for your project. But wait, this statement is not complete, we missed an important parameter “maintainability” or “support” in the above matrix. What happens when WordPress updates to a future version and your site crashes.

While above matrix is good if you want to finish the project in minimum time. I have another suggestion especially if you’re the site owner and you want a better return on investment :


Best Result the Lower the better.  

By Lifetime of Product, we assume that as long as the product is available we can get in touch with the theme author and get support from them.

Theme Type         Effort    Completion Time   Lifetime of Product   BEST RESULT

FT                                  10               10                                 10                                         10

PCT                                6                 5                                  8                                           3.7

NCT                               7                 4                                  4                                           7

CBT                               5                 2                                   1                                          10

And we can see we get completely different result.

Here we can see the best result indicates that a Popular Commercial theme is the best choice for building your site because it has the second highest lifetime value and is relatively easier to implement.

So at the end you are actually purchasing the product and the support for your website. If you check the trends of the most popular marketplace “”, the trends show the exact pattern. The most popular themes sell again and again restoring the trust and confidence of their buyers and that’s why they’re the best.


June 29, 2016

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