Looking for a Quality WordPress Theme?

Learn why picking a WordPress theme that does not rely on plugins is important.

At Ally Drez we inherit a lot of WordPress websites built with a very heavy backbone. Meaning, the site is not only loaded with outdated plugins, but the configuration is plugin-dependent causing a lot of confusion and broken elements. This ultimately makes the sites run poorly. We wanted to write a brief article that speaks into designing a WordPress website with a reliable theme and only plugins that are truly necessary. The end goal is to create a cleaner more organized website to manage.

I love plugins! They assist in those difficult development needs, and to be honest, why reinvent the wheel when some really solid developers have built out the functions for us? So, if I love plugins so much, why avoid a WordPress theme that can’t function without them?

We have fixed so many broken sites that are cluttered with dependent plugins. We have also fixed sites that are so outdated the developer of the plugins were no longer around. We manage server logs, and the amount of errors logged on these overloaded sites are unbelievable…Even when the site appears fine on the front end! This is why we see it as a huge benefit to design with a theme that does not heavily rely on plugins.

We also like to leave clients with confidence to keep their site up-to-date. This promotes a cleaner and safer internet. Building sites that are not plug-in dependent helps to avoid exploits in a website, which helps to protect your data. It also helps you rank higher in a search engine, like Google. Engines like Google don’t just look at how well your content is written or how long people watch a video, they also look at the quality of your site!

After over 100 WordPress websites under our belt, we recommend using a theme that provides ease of use, solid customer service and upkeep, as well as flexibility without saturating your plugin repository. The theme that we typically stick with is Divi, a WordPress theme created by Elegant Themes.  It is by far one of the most flexible and easy-to-use themes to work with.

Divi comes with a plethora of packaged resources for anyone who is unfamiliar with coding. You can literally build a quality website without any plugins, and still manage to include all your tracking codes, complex design requirements, form submissions and the list goes on. Of course, if you are wanting a more complex website (such as a store) you will need plugins. Divi has many free resources, excellent customer support, a solid reputation and are continually upgrading to improve their product.

Another reason to use Divi even though it’s possible for us to code a website without a content management system, is that clients today want to easily manage their own sites. One of the greatest reasons to stick with using WordPress with the Divi Product is so clients can be in charge of their information. Divi enables us to provide a product that is easily managed without being dependent on us. Customers can also change their layout design without ever having to purchase another theme again!

The biggest downside I have experienced in using this theme is the residue of shortcodes if you do want to switch away from Divi. Many popular builder themes are shortcode based, even ones that are plugin dependent. The good news is, you can install Shorcode Cleaner Lite and run this plugin to remove all shortcodes. It will work for removing shortcodes from any theme, which is a plus! And you can remove it once you have used it, to stay on point. 🙂

If that plugin doesn’t work for you, a quick Google search will serve many results– making this downside a moot point.

Divi is a registered trademark of Elegant Themes, Inc. Ally Drez Web & IT Services, is not affiliated with nor endorsed by Elegant Themes. Affiliate Disclaimer: Links on this website may be affiliate links that could result in us receiving compensation when you purchase a product or service from that link. You do not pay any extra fees for these items. This helps us pay for the many free products we make available to you. Thank you for your support.