ThemeForest (ThemeForest.net) is a marketplace for premium themes and website templates and is part of the Envato network. They offer themes for variety of CMS’s – WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, ExpressEngine, Magento and templates for custom websites. They have great variety of themes to choose from so you can pick one that fits your website and purpose –corporate, personal, ecommerce, landing page… whatever your website utilizes popular content management system like WordPress, Joomla or uses static HTML.
ThemeForest is one of the largest, if not THE largest player in the Web Templates space with over 4300+ site templates and themes and 1200+ authors. It is very hard to speak about quality of the marketplace in general because there are so many authors and themes.
Most of the ThemeForest themes are beautifully designed and in a lot of cases are better looking than themes of their competitors, but great design is nothing without framework, performance and quality code so if you want to be 100% safe in terms of best coding practices, performance and compatibility buy bestselling themes. Top selling themes are selling for a reason – because they’re good! Thousands of website owners can’t be wrong.
I personally own over 10 WordPress themes from ThemeForest and I am glad that I bought them because I think it is a great value for the price. In the past I used some of the free themes from WordPress directory and most of the time it was pain in the rear when I needed to change something and support was non-existing. This blog uses Striking theme and since I switched to it I don’t edit .css and .php files anymore because I can get almost everything done through admin panel and shortcodes. It is a HUGE time-saver. As I said best option is to check out top selling themes – they all have “Live Preview” feature so you can see different layouts, shordcodes, colors, fonts and widgets in action, this will help you decide if you need this functionality or you’ll be fine with basic functionality.
Because top selling themes like inFocus, Striking, Karma has large user base – developers are getting a lot of feedback and requests for new features which drives development – improved and updated versions are released every month or so. Frequency of updates is important sign when buying a theme – you want to see frequent and constant improvement.
If you have a question, bug or request for a new feature – you can ask for support on ThemeForest forums or go to developer’s website directly. I found that you get your answer quicker if you ask developer through their own website as a lot of them have dedicated support teams for their entire product portfolio. A lot of times simply searching the forum helps because there is a big chance that question was already answered and you can simply copy the solution. In my experience you can expect support get back to you with an answer within 24-48 hours, usually less.
You may ask “Why ThemeForest? What about other themes and frameworks like PlatformPro from PageLines, Thesis from DIYThemes or Genesis from StudioPress?” Yes, they all are great themes/frameworks BUT in my opinion ThemeForest is the best value for the money for online business owner.
- Thesis from DIYThemes – $87 personal; $164 developer’s option
- Genesis from StudioPress – $79.95 (1 theme + framework); $299 (all themes + framework)
- PlatformPro from PageLines – $79 personal; $179 + $14/month (unlimited websites + new releases)
If you’re like me than you have more than one website and personal license is not an option for you because you want to be able to install themes on many websites and any of the popular themes mentioned above would cost you $150+ while you can get topnotch theme at ThemeForest for as little as $35.