Over the years, WordPress has grown to become one of the most popular CMS on the Internet. Over 50 million people have chosen this software to power their businesses. Countless blogs, news outlets, portfolios and even prestigious government websites have chosen WordPress as their platform of choice. Its unique features such as themes and plugins make it extremely appealing. Although WordPress has proven itself as a wonderful platform in various aspects, it has its disadvantages too. For instance, the issue of premium themes can be very tricky.
There are several reasons why a bloated premium WordPress theme might be bad for your business. First, the current plethora of competing themes from various companies has made it difficult for business owners to choose the correct one. Often decent themes don’t get the attention they deserve because people are more interested in appearance than what’s under the hood.
The difficult part is finding a theme that functions well and at the same time is well built, free of bloat and in tune with your business requirements. Although there are developers who follow best practices and try to create high-quality products, most developers don’t care about these things. They create themes with hundreds of unnecessary features just to maximize their revenue. When choosing a theme you should not be attracted by outward luster alone. Instead try to find something lean and efficient. Ask the developer about things like code quality. You should also think carefully about your requirements. Do you really need a full page background slider? Or an embedded music player? Or hundreds of shortcodes that will become non-functional but still stay in your posts and pages when you decide to move to a different theme?
Another problem with many premium themes is that the bloat usually leads to serious security loopholes. Developers often use code snippets from the internet to add new features to the theme. These snippets aren’t always optimized for performance or security. Moreover every theme comes with dozens of external PHP and JS libraries. These external dependencies aren’t always secure and developers rarely bother to upgrade them when necessary. The hackish snippets also don’t play well with many plugins.
It is the responsibility of marketplaces like ThemeForest to encourage developers to adopt the proven best practices followed by software developers around the world. But until that happens you should keep your eyes open and understand that a bloated theme will harm your website.