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WordPress Theme Development: Bring Your Website Design to the Next Level

You use simple, pre-made WordPress themes on a daily basis, but do you realize how crucial the right design is? 🤔Well, it can create an effective and engaging online presence, communicate the brand’s message, capture the attention of visitors, and ultimately convert them into customers. But the readymade themes you use can’t meet all these goals.You need something better, something more efficient, something… yes! Something as good as custom themes. 🤩Stay with us, and you will learn how to go through custom WordPress theme development!

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5 MIN.

Michał Kaźmierczak

Founder & Ceo

The Basics of WordPress Themes

WordPress themes are collections of files that are available for users to build their site, define its design and include the features they need.

They control the appearance of a site, including the layout, fonts, colors, and other design elements. They also provide the functionality of the web, such as displaying content and handling user interactions.

With a WordPress theme directory, you can create different sites, subpages, and single posts that will be your online business cards and will establish your presence on the internet.

You should also know that WordPress theme designs have their structure. It consists of various files and folders, including:

  • style.css file – which contains the theme’s metadata, 
  • index.php file – which serves as the default template for displaying content.

As well as:

  • header.php – they define the site’s header section
  • footer.php – they define the site’s footer section,
  • functions.php – it contains the theme’s custom functions.

Moreover, to develop a WordPress custom theme, you need to be familiarized with the WordPress Template Hierarchy – it’s a system that determines which template file is used to show different types of content on the web. 

This template hierarchy consists of a series of rules that define the priority of various template files, such as page.php, single.php, and archive.php, for displaying specific content. Without the knowledge and ability to utilize them, you will not move further in the design process.

In addition, to create a functional WordPress custom theme, you need to include the required files and functions, such as the header and footer, navigation menus, and widgets. These elements can be customized to create a unique design that meets the needs of the website’s owner and target audience.

All of this sound complicated? 

Don’t worry, there is an easy way how to provide you with a personalized WordPress site. 💡

Many Ways to Create a Custom WordPress Theme

Did you think that you could develop a custom theme in WordPress in only one way? By developing a theme on your own? Nothing could be further from the truth!

If you don’t have a clue about building pages in WordPress, let alone coding or using templates, you don’t have to worry about it at all because there are at least two to get a custom WordPress page.

The first way is to develop a site yourself – which you already know. You can either use ready-made templates or go through WordPress theme development from the start (even more coding, right). 

But! 

You can also outsource this work to professionals who will provide you with an advanced, optimized, original site.

Interested? So let’s take a closer look at these two solutions. 💪

🔧 Use an HTML/CSS Template

A good choice if you feel up to the task and know how to program and use WordPress. If not, you need to spend a lot of time learning this platform and coding. After all, you want your site to work, right?

Using a basic HTML/CSS template can provide you with a strong foundation for creating a functional WordPress theme. By customizing the template to your needs, you can create a unique and visually appealing web that provides an excellent user experience.

Therefore, you can modify the default themes that come with WordPress or create a new theme from scratch. Using current theme options, you will be able to customize the design, layout, typography, and other elements. You can also take advantage of custom fields to add additional functionality to the website if you know how to work with them.

The risk is that you will spend a lot of time developing a template, and you will end up with a quite unattractive or basic theme. Very much depends on your skills.

Pros of This Solution:
  • you build the template according to your own requirements
  • you spend as much time building as you want
  • it’s a cheaper solution.
Cons of This Solution:
  • you must have the right skills to handle the task
  • the design you build may be really basic
  • you may not know how to add advanced features to the site
  • the theme development process will increase significantly
  • using a template can restrict the flexibility of the web
  • not all templates are well-coded, and using a poorly-coded template can result in many issues.
Best Practices in Developing a Theme on Your Own

There are a few things to keep in mind when developing a theme. For example, follow WordPress coding standards and use clean and valid HTML and CSS – this will help ensure the page is safe.

Use a child theme instead of modifying a parent theme directly. Also, ensure the theme is responsive and mobile-friendly, and include accessibility features to make the theme usable by people with disabilities. 📱

Keep the theme lightweight, optimized for performance, and use appropriate image sizes and compression to improve loading times.

Use proper naming conventions for functions, variables, and classes. Don’t forget about document code comments, to make it easier for team members to understand.

And, of course, test the theme thoroughly on different devices and browsers and keep it updated to ensure compatibility with the latest version of WordPress and plugins. 

🎨 Cooperate with WordPress Development Agency

A good choice if you do not know how to program but still want to have an original website. This solution may be the best way for your business, as you can rely on theme developers from professional WordPress agencies who are at your service. 

Agencies can provide a solid foundation for the theme by creating one that is well-coded and high-quality. This can have a huge impact on site performance, user experience, and search engine optimization.

Also, professional developers can offer advanced functionality that may not be available in a basic template, such as custom menus, theme extras, and bespoke websites.

What’s more, working with a development agency can provide unlimited access to technical support and ongoing maintenance to ensure that the web continues to perform optimally over time.

Pros of This Solution:
  • you don’t need to know how to code
  • you will save time and effort during WordPress theme development
  • you will establish a unique and unique online presence
  • your website will have advanced features
  • the company will build the template according to all your requirements
  • the company will provide you with important insights and advises you on the visual design of the web
  • you don’t have to remember about ongoing site maintenance
  • the company will take care of the site optimization for SEO
  • the template and the website will be secured and virus-free.
Cons of This Solution:
  • it’s a more expensive way to develop the site (but it will pay off in the long run)
  • you need to be sure that the communication process with the company is smooth so as not to delay the theme development process.
Best Practices when Working with Development Agency

To work with the agency successfully, clearly define requirements, goals, a realistic budget, and a timeline for the project before starting it. 

Choose an agency with relevant expertise, experience, and a strong portfolio in your industry. Ask if they use secure development practices and take steps to protect your data and intellectual property. 

Also, set clear communication channels and frequent meetings. Remember to ask for regular progress reports or any updates. Ensure that the agency follows established project management methodologies. Provide timely feedback and be open to constructive criticism as well.

In addition, conduct thorough testing and quality assurance before launching the project. And above all, maintain a positive working relationship and address any issues or concerns promptly.

Which Solution Should You Choose?

The decision of whether to build a website on your own or cooperate with a development agency is a complex one that depends on several factors. 

If you have a basic understanding of web development, you could start building a theme from scratch or using some premium themes that come with customizable options. However, if you require custom functionality that is not available in themes or requires advanced knowledge of PHP or CSS, it may be more beneficial to work with a professional agency.

A WordPress theme development company can help you create a great-looking site with bespoke themes that are tailored to your specific needs. 

They can help you with advanced code and provide advanced knowledge of web development to ensure it’s optimized for performance and meets industry standards. Moreover, such an agency can help you create an original web that cannot be found in pre-built templates and which can’t be built by someone with basic knowledge.

Working with a development agency also means that you can focus on other aspects of your business, like an email marketing strategy that includes using email verification tools, while the experts handle the technical web aspects. You can provide your ideas and essential requirements, and the company will take care of the rest, from design and development to testing and deployment.

So, if you have the skills and resources, building a website on your own can be a good option. However, if you have tried and nothing good comes from it, find a business that will do the job for you.

Leave the Job to Fooz

Working with a reliable and trustworthy company will be a sheer pleasure, and Fooz customers can attest to this.

Fooz is a WordPress development agency consisting of skilled professionals who will build a one-of-a-kind site according to your requirements. It doesn’t matter that you’re not familiar with custom site building, development, and optimization – thanks to us, you don’t need to know them. 

We will take care of your web from the technical side, and you will have time for other important activities.

Our company is known for the ease and flexibility of WordPress theme development, as well as our superior technical quality. Communication in our team is at the highest level as well. 

Our project teams work in small groups, with a dedicated project manager responsible for contacting the client and meeting the deadline. This ensures clear communication throughout the development process, reducing the risk of miscommunication and delays.

Check out here how we work with startups and entrepreneurs!

Develop Themes Like a Pro

WordPress theme development is often a tough nut to crack. But you don’t have to think so. All you need to do is work with the right WordPress service provider.

If you are looking for extraordinary website designs, contact Fooz and let your site stand out from the competition. Get rid of simple WordPress theme templates, and you will see the difference!