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About Elegant Themes / Elegant Themes Review
The current business landscape is highly influenced by the web and customers see a company in good light if that company has a good online presence. And online presence does not mean just the desktop, it means mobile phones too and that too all kinds of mobile phones: iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Firefox OS. Customers also expect a good online presence even on tablet devices like iPad, Samsung Galaxy Tabs and so on. A plain installation of WordPress does not mean that a company’s website shines out of the crowd. A theme has to be applied to make it look ready for Web 2.0 and these themes are nothing but a mixture of HMTL, CSS and whole lot of custom code. Elegant Themes is a web company that provides premium themes of WordPress that stand out of the crowd and helps a company’s website or for that matter any website shine through to give an exceptional experience for its Internet visitors.
Elegant Themes is a unique company, in the sense it has a very flat organizational structure, run by a few people from across the globe. It’s a “social” company, one can say, owing to the fact it’s more of a community rather than a company (in a classic sense). Nick Roach is the owner of this 8 year old company which has close to 300,000 customers around the world and has an amazingly active online forum with multitude posts of appreciation for the speed as well as the quality of support offered. The amazing themes as well as stellar support has made Elegant Themes the leader in its space in the market.
What’s on Offer?
The usual is not on offer, the extraordinary is on offer and that too at a wonderful price point. Unlike other players in the WordPress themes market, Elegant Themes does not charge on a per theme basis. There are currently 87 themes in their product offering and once you pay, you have access to all of them. A key feature of the themes is the availability of something called as an ePanel. The ePanel of the theme allows the user to change the color scheme, layout settings, ad management and plug-in integration. This options panel helps even the newbie to full customize the look and feel of their WordPress website. Also, all of the themes are fully responsive and can be viewed on devices of any screen size. Several of the themes have drag and drop functionalities to arrange sections on the website as well as full translation support. So, many languages are supported, even right-to-left languages are supported.
A special mention has to be given to a theme called Divi, which has received the most positive feedback from many customers. The theme can be highly altered to the point that any two websites made from the same theme would not look alike. Many of the customers of Elegant Theme are small companies that use the themes to customize websites for their projects on clients’ websites. A demo of every theme can also be seen live, which helps in understanding beforehand as to how the website would look. Lastly, some of the themes like Divi, have undergone security audits from external agencies on the code of the theme. Thus all the themes are also secure, which indicates that the code is well written and lends a helping hand to start as a good base to alter the code further, if need be.
Packages / Plans / Pricing
There are 3 packages: Personal, Developer and Lifetime Access. Each one has a different price and varied set of features:
- Personal ($69/year)
- Complete access to all themes
- Perpetual theme updates
- Premium technical support
- Unlimited website usage
- Developer ($89/year) – all personal features plus:
- Complete access to all plugins
- Layered Photoshop files
- Lifetime Access ($249 – one time) – all personal & developer features plus:
- No yearly fees
Considering that there are currently 87 premium themes available, a price point of $69 per year is really great.
Let us go through the features one by one:
- Complete access to all themes – Full access of all the current themes (at the time when you subscribe), also any additional themes which are created while you are a member.
- Perpetual theme updates – While being a member of Elegant Themes, you get access to updates of all the themes. This is very useful because WordPress is constantly being updated and Elegant Themes ensures that all their themes are compatible with the latest version of WordPress.
- Premium technical support – As already mentioned, the support forum is really active and while the membership is active, you would get the required support with great response times.
- Unlimited website usage – This feature is really amazing and really different from other theme providing companies, who limit the number of websites where you can use a theme. Elegant Themes allows you to use the themes on unlimited websites, without purchasing any additional licenses. For developer and lifetime access, this is also applicable to the plugins.
- Complete access to all plugins – For developer and lifetime access, full access to all the plugins is provided, including any new plugins that are created while the membership is active.
- Layered Photoshop files – If you are a designer, this really comes in handy. Once the Photoshop design files are there, you can tweak it to any limit and have maximum control over the theme’s design. This is only applicable for developer and lifetime access plans.
- No yearly fees – Once you purchase this plan, you can sit back and relax, as you get full access to all the themes as well as plugins that are currently available or will be available as long as the company exists. At no additional fees, this is only applicable for the lifetime access plan.
What’s more is that there’s a 30 days money back guarantee with no questions asked. Considering the rave reviews from online publications like Mashable and Smashing Magazine, it’s unlikely that a customer would be unsatisfied. Apart from this, an important point to note is that if your subscription expires, you can continue to use the themes/plugins you have already downloaded. However, you will not be able to update those themes/plugins to the latest version.
Every Elegant theme is controlled from the “Theme Options” tab, under “Appearance” tab of the WordPress settings panel. Elegant Themes has made it really simple to manage the themes using this method and named it the ePanel, probably derived from the popular cPanel. These are the configurable settings available in each theme’s ePanel.
- General Settings
Pertains to the general settings of logging, favicon choice, homepage settings and the like. There are some simple buttons and drop-down menus to choose from.
This tab helps you control the navigation of the theme, what page goes where and how to reach there, for the website visitors.
- Layout Settings
The themes offer a simple to use drag and drop mechanism to arrange blocks of the web page. This is most effectively implemented for the popular theme named Divi.
- Ad Management
Just to manage the ads on your website; which is necessary for many users, as they are freelancers and monetization of the website is sometimes a must.
The coloring of the theme can be adjusted, some preset color palettes are given that suites that particular theme.
Search Engine Optimization for short, ensures that your theme is searchable by the search engine bots, thus ensuring your website reaches your audience when they search for it.
Elegant Themes plugin can be integrated and other integration options/settings.
- Support Docs
Extensive support documents that help you in every way, when you feel stuck somewhere building your amazing website on WordPress.
WordPress being the most popular CMS on the web, it’s no surprise that businesses have set shop around its ancillary features like themes. There are indeed other players in the market of WordPress themes, but Elegant Themes stands at the top with its unique and meticulously beautiful themes, stellar support community, sweet price point as well as amazing plugins.
If you are tight on budget and find other theme providers like Theme Forest or Template Monster, too costly, then Elegant Themes is the best choice. A close new contender to Elegant Themes is themify.me, which has the same business model, but a bit higher price point. Elegant Themes shines out against the competition in terms of the features, support and most importantly their focus as well as experience in the market with thousands of very satisfied customers. Get building with Elegant Themes and you are sure to be in good company, while being assured that your web project would run on the latest mobile devices with no extra efforts!