Pitfalls of a custom programmed WordPress website

Far too often we have people contact us about making updates to their WordPress website as they want to move away from their current developer/agency. We then find that their WordPress website is so custom programmed that it essentially locks the client in and only allows them to use the initial developer.

Choosing the best option for you…

Ultimately, the choice between a custom-programmed WordPress website and a purchased theme expertly styled depends on your specific needs, budget, and technical expertise. Purchased themes that are specifically designed to meet your needs offer convenience, affordability, and a wide range of design options, while custom programming provides more flexibility and control.

Assess your requirements and consider consulting with the team at Reward to make an informed decision that aligns with your goals.

Here are a few misleading claims or false promises that are sometimes made about custom programmed websites:

  1. Development Time and Cost: Custom programming a WordPress website requires more time and resources compared to using a pre-designed theme. Developing a custom theme involves coding from scratch, which can be time-consuming and costly. Purchasing a pre-designed theme, on the other hand, provides a ready-made template that requires minimal customisation, reducing development time and cost.
  2. Limited Design Options: Purchased themes often come with a wide range of design options and templates to choose from. They offer a variety of layouts, colour schemes, and typography options, allowing you to find a design that suits your needs. Custom programming, however, may limit your design options as you start from scratch and rely on the expertise of the developer to create a visually appealing design.
  3. Future Updates and Compatibility: Pre-designed themes are usually regularly updated by their developers to ensure compatibility with the latest versions of WordPress and plugins. On the other hand, custom-coded websites may require ongoing maintenance and updates to remain compatible with new WordPress versions and plugin releases. Failure to keep up with updates can result in compatibility issues and security vulnerabilities.
  4. Support and Documentation: Purchased themes often come with documentation and customer support provided by the theme developer. If you encounter any issues or need assistance, you can rely on their support resources. With a custom-coded website, you may have limited support options unless you have a dedicated developer or agency to rely on.
  5. Flexibility and Scalability: Purchased themes are built with flexibility in mind, allowing you to easily customise and add new features using plugins and theme options. Custom-programmed websites can also be flexible, but they require more development work to accommodate changes or additions. Scaling a custom-coded website may involve more complexity and time compared to using a theme that offers scalability options out of the box.
  6. Code Quality and Maintenance: Pre-designed themes undergo rigorous quality checks and testing before release to ensure they meet coding standards and best practices. Custom-coded websites rely on the skills and expertise of the developer, which can vary in terms of code quality and maintainability. Improperly coded custom websites may be more prone to bugs, performance issues, and maintenance challenges.
  7. Learning Curve: Custom programming a WordPress website requires technical expertise and knowledge of programming languages like PHP, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. If you don’t have the necessary skills, you may face a steep learning curve or need to rely on developers for any changes or updates. Purchased themes, on the other hand, offer a user-friendly interface and documentation that makes it easier for non-technical users to manage and customise their websites.

Knowledge is power…

It’s worth finding out from a website company  the following:

  • Do they custom code pages?
  • Do they create their own theme
  • What is their support policy
  • What will it cost to add features in future
  • Can you update the website yourself
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