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Custom WordPress themes: how does it work?

Customised WordPress websites

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Do you want a (new) website or webshop for your organisation? Then you will have to choose an existing WordPress theme or have your own WordPress theme created. Having your own theme made is also called a custom built website. Both a custom WordPress theme and a standard WordPress theme have their advantages. But which one is better? We will explain it to you in this blog. 

What’s a WordPress website?

Let’s start by telling you exactly what WordPress is. WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS) that allows you to develop and maintain websites. It is an extensive CMS with a whole ecosystem of plugins and themes. WordPress is also open source. This means that anyone can view, modify and distribute the code. WordPress is also free to download.

A WordPress theme: what does it involve? 

In WordPress you can choose a default theme. This can be seen as a kind of framework for your website. Certain WordPress themes function as if you had built your own website. This way you do not have to go into the code and develop everything separately. So a WordPress theme is actually a standard design, in which you can sometimes modify some parts.  

Advantages of a WordPress theme  

The big advantage of a WordPress theme is that it saves time. So your website can go live faster. And that also saves money. By comparison, a fairly simple customised WordPress website (and therefore theme) costs at least ten times as much time to build. From a financial point of view, this makes a big difference. Moreover, you need little technical knowledge or skills. In fact, anyone can put a WordPress theme online! The advantages are summarised: 

  • Faster going live
  • Fewer costs
  • Little technical knowledge required 

Disadvantages of a WordPress theme

A standard WordPress theme has the disadvantage that it limits your possibilities. The loading time of your website will be much slower than when you have it custom built. Furthermore, you are not flexible at all. You can modify a WordPress theme, but only to a very limited extent. You are always bound to certain frameworks and possibilities. Perhaps one of the biggest disadvantages is that your website is sensitive to bugs (problems in the code of the website). This is because you have to update themes frequently. The disadvantages of a standard WordPress theme summed up: 

  • Not unique 
  • Much slower than when custom built
  • Not flexible 
  • Limited possibilities 
  • Bug-sensitive

What is a custom WordPress theme? 

Als je een WordPress thema helemaal op maat laat maken, dan begin je helemaal op nul. Zie het als een volledig witte vlakte. Dan begin je vanaf nul. Je begint met het in kaart brengen wat je in jouw website wilt en wat de beste indeling daarvoor is. Als webshop is het bijvoorbeeld heel belangrijk dat deze optimaal is ingedeeld om je conversie te optimaliseren. Nadat je inzichtelijk hebt gemaakt wat optimaal is, begin je met wireframen: het digitaal lijnschetsen van de website. Dit is onderdeel van het User Experience Design. Zo krijg je een beeld wat de indeling van de website wordt. Vervolgens kijk je naar de interface. Dit zijn eigenlijk de functionaliteiten van de website en het digitaal likje verf. En dan begin je pas met webdevelopment… 

If you have a WordPress theme completely customised, you start from scratch. Think of it as a completely white sheet. You start from scratch. You start by mapping out what you want in your website and what the best layout is for it. For example, as a webshop it is very important that it is optimally laid out to optimise your conversion. Once you’ve clarified what is optimal, you start wireframing: the digital line sketching of the website. This is part of User Experience Design. It gives you an idea of the layout of the website. Next, you look at the interface. These are actually the functionalities of the website and the digital lick of paint. And then you start web development… 

Often, a web designer, web design agency or website maker is hired for a custom-built website. 

Nadelen aangepast WordPress thema

A standard WordPress template has many disadvantages, but a custom-made theme hardly has any. However, there are some things that are annoying like. A custom-made WordPress website (theme) costs considerably more money. This is because a lot more time is spent on it. We have listed the disadvantages: 

  • Customisation simply costs more
  • Takes longer to go live

Advantages of a custom WordPress theme

But there are many more advantages than disadvantages to a customised WordPress theme. You can easily adapt everything and organise your website the way you like it. Moreover, a customised WordPress website (and theme) offers an excellent basis for search engine optimisation (SEO). We have summarised the advantages:

  • Everything is (easily) customisable
  • 100% unique 
  • Optimised for SEO
  • Much faster than a theme

What is better? 

A custom WordPress theme! We’d better be clear about this. If you really want to score with your website, a standard WordPress theme is not enough. Are you curious about the possibilities of a custom WordPress website? Please feel free to contact us as an internet agency!