Before you start thinking in terms of what color and how many columns, you need to ask yourself some questions about the purpose of your site, the goals of your blog and the target audience your want to draw to your site.
You know, all those questions we discussed in the ‘Planning Your WordPress Website’ presentation.
Questions you need to ask before you push the ‘install theme’ button:
Are you expecting this site to reflect your corporate branding?
If so, the theme’s color palette needs to reflect and enhance your logo and other collateral materials.
Is this site is being developed to represent your business to your client-base?
Have you researched your audience demographic to know what type treatments and graphic layouts will enhance your message, making it easy to communicate to your customers?
If so, what is the look and feel that will meet the expectations of your targeted demographic?
Are you planning to develop to your WordPress website as a full-blown content management system?
When developing a complex information structure, you need a robust theme that offers both flexibility and functionality, along with a great design that reinforces your message.
Are you an on-line entrepreneur who has a plan for rapid growth?
Pick a theme that has the capability to expand in order to meet the goals you have set for your business site.
What if you plan to use your new WordPress site as a personal Blog?
This means you can look at the more simplistic theme designs; but the look and feel of the theme you choose still has to reflect your personality and your voice as the author of the Blog.
What does your online client want?
Now is the time to pull out the information you gleaned from your ‘Website Planning Check List”
Most small business owners just want to look through the WordPress Themes available (free or premium) pick on that looks good, and just get going building their online presence.
But before you start looking at all the beautiful themes, you really have to understand what will motivate your target demographic to action. It may be your site, but it needs to be designed to appeal to the people who will be making the decision to purchase your product or service. It is absolutely vital that you know and understand what attracts and motivates the “persona” of your ideal customer. All your design choices must be focused on what you feel will draw your site visitors into the online environment your theme is building for them.
Colors, type styling, information structure, how media is handled are all factors you need to consider when building the perfect online destination for the customers of your product or service.
Now that we have the “Will this theme support the purpose of my site?” out of the way, we can move on to a different set of questions related to the theme itself.