in Design

Coding Your Own Website vs. Using a WordPress Theme

WordPress themes have made it extremely easy to get the template of a website up and running within 5 minutes. All you have to do is do a simple Google Search of something along the lines of: “Best WordPress Themes” or “Free WordPress Themes” …and you will get an array of results that you will be able to choose from for your new website.

Yes, there are a lot of perks in using WordPress themes. You are able to cut out a lot of the time it would take to either outsource your web development or do it yourself, and it is basically the closest thing it comes to instant gratification when you get your website up there as there is.

That being said, there are still lots of things that you have to do when you are setting up your WordPress theme. It’s not like everything there ever was to do when you are working with a WordPress is just automatically taken care for you. They provide you with a template, and then from there you have to make your web site come to life.

Reasons Why I Have Fallen off of the WordPress Band Wagon…

These reasons may seem completely biased; as I am an aspiring programmer, but let me first tell you a couple things I have learned along the way when it comes to programming and Internet marketing.

The goal of many WordPress sites is simple: Get a blog up, get some traffic, and get some advertisers or set up some ways to make money via affiliate marketing and so on and so forth. Usually with WordPress sites, most of the stress is put on the content, and working that content around a theme. There a few problems with that model (well not really “problems” but I like to call them hindrances).

1. Many of the times your WordPress theme is getting used by many other different people, so you will be seeing the same theme in many different places. This can even be true if you purchase a theme rather than use a free one.

2. Choosing from a selection of themes doesn’t capture who you are as a company (or a person) as best it can. It can’t because you are selecting from a number of choices rather than full on doing it yourself – an option that provides an infinite number of ways of getting the job done

Now if you run an offline business and are merely trying to just get something up on the Internet for people to come to when you hand them your business card, and if you don’t plan on doing too much on the Internet scene in terms of making from your website, then yeah, a WordPress theme would make a lot of sense.

I am a firm believer, however, that every single SEO out there, whether they are affiliate marketers or are providing some sort of link building service should learn at least the basics of how to code a web site up and perhaps even learn a few extensive programming languages like Java and C++. It has been said that you can call yourself a programmer when you can program in two different languages. That is a very good assessment and very good advice.

Here are a few reasons why programming will help you and your web site:

– Even if you learn only the basics, you will be able to get into the mindset of a programmer, and therefore if you work with one in the future, you will have a better grasp of what it is that they will actually be able to do for you, and what is impossible to ask of them

– You will be able to fix problems easier on your own. When something is going wrong at the core of your web site, you will be able to dive in there and fix it.

– You will know exactly how web site operates, where everything is located, and will there for be able to go in there and gut it out whenever you like

– Programming is one of the skills that is very valuable in this world. If you can program, not only can you be very valuable to yourself, but you can be very valuable to many other people.

– Programming can help fuel your ideas. If you are able to see what you are able to do then new ideas can start pouring in. It’s like being a musician and learning a new instrument

Overall, learning to code a web site yourself will give you more skill sets to make it in this world and it will allow you to make your web site more and more your own, rather than something that is pulled off the assembly line. You may find in fact, that you will have more stress and problems trying to to get your WordPress theme to work out then you will trying to figure out why your coding isn’t working out the way you wanted it to.


Bogdan is the founder of Top Design Magazine. You can find him in Bucharest-Romania so next time you want to drink a beer there and talk about web and stuff, give him a message.