I started blogging with blogger as the first platform (most of us do the same as it allows push button publishing). Then i moved to wordpress after receiving some good advice from my blogger friends. At that point i had no idea as to how things worked and therefore, for a moment, thought of hiring someone who could take care of all the important factors viz. hosting, wordpress installation, theme issues, etc. But then, upon doing some research, i found out that setting up a self hosted wordpress blog was an expensive issue (hosting expenses). Hiring people for setting up a wordpress blog was even more expensive and most importantly getting a theme designed specially for Techvorm was way too expensive.
However, I somehow managed to take care of setting up the wordpress blog by reading various manuals/articles/knowledge base/referring friends online. But getting a dedicated theme for the blog was a difficult task for me as i didnt (and still dont) have the money to spend on hiring theme designers (neither i wanted to). So i was left with the only option of using any free theme. I then looked for some themes and found one which was told to be user friendly and seo optimized. I used it for a period of around 3 months. During this time i played with the theme files, learnt the codes, and because the theme didnt support widgets (although it claimed to but didnt) i got the knowledge of editing the theme file to get the desired results. During this time i came to know about an extremely popular wordpress theme called Thesis theme. Many of my blogger friends were (and are) using this theme and upon contacting them i concluded by making my mind to buy it. And like majority of first time bloggers with zero income, i dropped the idea soon and continued to use the free one.
Today, while writing this article, i am glad that i didnt buy Thesis theme.
- Firstly, i learnt a lot of things which i couldnt have had i bought the theme and hired someone to do all the designing on my behalf.
- Secondly, Thesis is the thing for those who have knowledge of CSS and php coding and i am NOT one of those (am pursuing B.Com).
So playing with the ‘hooks’ was not possible for me. Besides, there are a selected few themes which allow same type of customization as provided by Thesis like Isotherm (which i am using currently).
Most of the budding bloggers dont realise that investing in a premium theme like thesis would not hugely help them and their blog to grow at a faster rate, spending 100 dollars without any hope of recovering it anytime soon isnt a thing done by every blogger ! And it seriously hurts to spend 100+ bucks just for the theme. Your first priority should be writing quality posts and once you have enough confidence on your blog then you can buy Thesis theme or get a theme specially designed for your blog. Also, a couple of awesome Frameworks (if you know what they are) are available but they need someone with great knowledge of CSS and php. It is a headache for those who have never heard of these terms !
In the end i just want to say that, i shared with you my personal experience so that you don’t go around spending much of your time arranging money for any paid theme or wasting time customizing it unless and until your aim is to be a professional blogger.
My advice is :
- To just start with a free theme (possibly customizable like thesis or Isotherm),
- Write quality content,
- Promote your blog,
- Develop reader base,
- THEN buy a paid theme or get a theme designed for your blog exclusively.
This post is dedicated to my friend Navin Israni, who in one of my previous post (Short Forms Used Frequently On Social Media) criticised me of writing “baby-like-content posts”.