Elementor is definitely on the first spot because it is free (making it a no-brainer) and it is the most intuitive WordPress website builder that doesn't costs a dime to install.
Of course, there is a paid version called Elementor Pro if you are looking for an all-in-one advanced WordPress theme builder.
By default, the Elementor free version is already sufficient for most WordPress website users and owners. It is easy to use and beginners will enjoy a low learning curve to totally master the power of drag and drop website builder.
Overall, Elementor is a great free WordPress theme that doesn't sucks and if you are running eCommerce on WordPress, I have good news for you,
Elementor integrates not only with WooCommerce, but along with hundreds of other third party tools without creating any conflicts!
Looking for a perfect (and free) WordPress theme for freelancers, agencies, startups, and small business?
You don't have to look any further — Airi is definitely a great theme especially for beginners.
What makes Aini an unique WordPress theme?
The Airi theme is fully integrated with Elementor and this means that you can use this WP theme on any type of website. With this integration, you will get a powerful drag and drop interface which helps you build landing pages that rocks.
Last but not least, I am going to admit that I still love StudioPress themes. Even thought I no longer use it as much as I do in the past, this is still one of the most affordable WordPress themes in the market, especially in the premium WordPress theme world.
Here are some reasons why I recommend StudioPress themes:
Simple payment and charge (pay for single theme or one-time membership payment)
Super affordable (each child theme costs under $100)
Why is it important to choose the right WordPress theme?
The reason for this is simple — a WordPress theme represents who you are and how your website will perform in the eyes of many.
A good WordPress theme is going to help you a lot with conversions (take a look at Thrive Themes for example).
Finding for the right WordPress theme isn't really a walk in the park. More importantly, you shouldn't take it lightly. Most WordPress themes come with a simple design, some light codings for customization and that's pretty much what you will get.
The problem starts when your website looks just like anyone else (which sucks).
Now, when you use WordPress themes like Elementor, Thrive Themes or Divi, that's when you can customize everything under the roof using the inbuilt intuitive drag and drop builder.
This means that your website is unique (and will always be) and you can create the design that you truly love — on both desktop and mobile version.
As a summary, it is important to choose the right WordPress theme especially when you are a blogger. You don't want to be using the same theme everyone else is using.
Need some help?
Elementor is a great choice for free drag and drop builders but the free version comes with some limitation.
If you are looking for a full-service WordPress theme, Thrive Themes and Divi are excellent choices to go with!
Which Are The Best Premium WordPress Themes For 2018?
The new year has just started and it is high time to publish another round up post about the best premium WordPress themes for 2018. Last year itself, we have seen huge growth in terms of premium WordPress themes and I'm sure more are coming soon.
Let's get right into discovering the best premium WordPress themes money can buy today, alright?
How To Choose The Best Premium WordPress Themes?
Choosing the best premium WordPress theme is not an easy task. On the outer layer, the process of choosing the best WordPress theme seems to be an easy task; but make no mistake as it can be a very complicated matter.
Here are the criteria that I use to determine the best premium WordPress themes:
Design / Layout
Are you ready to dive into the top and premium WordPress themes?
Thrive Themes is no doubt one of the top contender for the year. Managed by the Thrive team and lead by Shane MeLaugh, Thrive Themes had proved to be one of the most popular premium WordPress themes of all time.
For me, Thrive Themes is definitely the best premium WordPress theme for 2018. Want to know more about Thrive Themes? Click to read the Thrive Themes review.
Since the launched of Thrive Themes and products, people been moving their websites to the new, highly intuitive Thrive Themes.
And let's be honest here. Website owners start using Thrive Themes not because of the super affordable prices — but it was because it comes with a truckload of awesome features.
Here are some to start with:
Fast loading speed
10 beautifully designed demos (which are ready to be imported)
One click installation
Clean codes and secure
All themes are created to focus on conversion
No coding skills required
Drag and drop website builder included
Membership includes all Thrive products and plugins (that saves you over $1,000)
Easy integration with Google Analytics, social media accounts and many more!
For me, I would go for Thrive Themes anytime of the day because it comes with all the Thrive products. With those, I'm not only able to have a beautiful website, I do not need to purchase additional plugins just for marketing purposes!
Thrive Themes is best premium WordPress theme for you If you need a WordPress theme that is built for speed, conversion focused, readability and clarity.
Last but not least, the price tag for Thrive Themes is highly affordable. As low as $19 per month, you will enjoy everything Thrive Themes has to offer (both themes and plugins), as well as the 24/7 customer support if you need any assistance.
Avada is the best selling theme on Theme Forest for several years now. So, what makes Avada such a powerful premium WordPress theme?
For starters, Avada is a drag and drop WordPress builder. This means that you can build your website from scratch without using a single line of code.
Avada is often considered a heavy all-in-one website builder and thus, it may affect the website loading speed (some believes this). However, I've been using Avada for several years now and while the website loading speed is not entirely lighting speed, it is still very fast and a well designed website can load under 1.5 seconds.
Avada is one of the best premium WordPress themes because:
38 pre-made fully featured websites (and demos)
Most advanced yet easy to use option system
One click pre-made installer system and content
Free value packed lifetime updates
6 premium plugins included worth over $200
Over 240+ pre-made web page designs to choose from
Over 1,000 different options for easy customization
Intuitive, fast and fun visual builder
Affordable pricing (one time payment for 12 months support)
Avada is one of the best premium WordPress themes and at this point of time, it has over 350,000 people using Avada on a daily basis.
Introducting the X Theme. When the X Theme was first launch, it instantly became a heat and direct competitor to Avada. X Theme is powered by Cornerstone and it is often considered a great WordPress page builder for beginners.
X Theme is one of the best premium WordPress themes because everything is done 100% on the front end. This means that you can see and work on your site in real time, all the time.
One of the reasons I use X Theme is because it comes the a huge element library. This means that you have access to countless elements, templates and features to build your website from scratch. And the best part, without using a single line of code.
Yes, no coding skill is required.
You should consider X Theme if you are looking for:
Super intuitive WordPress page builder
Advanced controls and customization
Countless demos with one-click installation
Every growing premium plugins and extensions (they have 29 plugins at this point of time) that are free to use
Massive library containing the latest elements and features
SEO friendly website themes
Fast loading website themes
Affordable pricing (one time payment for 12 months support)
A regular license of X Theme will cost you $59 and 6 months of support. Extended support of 12 months can be purchased at $17.63 if needed.
You should go for X Theme if you are tired of buying multiple plugins and testing them, as well as affordable pricing. The only downside of X Theme is X Theme loads slower than Thrive Themes and Avada (approximately 1.8 to 2 seconds on average). You can also read my X Theme vs Thrive Themes review.
StudioPress is the theme that I am currently using on this blog. Now, make no mistake. I have did so much configuration on this theme and therefore, I wouldn't want to put everything to waste and change to my favorite, Thrive Themes. As a disclaimer, I use all Thrive plugins except for the theme itself.
Now, what about StudioPress? I first bought StudioPress Pro Pack 6 years back. It was the best investment I had done for myself especially in the blogging space. Until today, StudioPress still remains as an excellent choice for many customers. At this point of time, I would say that StudioPress is best for you if you are selling web development (as a side hustle or a day job) and here are some reason why:
Industry leading design framework
24 mobile-optimized (mobile-ready) HTML5 designs
Inbuilt advanced SEO functionality
Easy to setup
Search engine optimized
Responsive turnkey designs
Unlimited everything (pay one and get lifetime membership)
The only downside about StudioPress is that it doesn't come with visual builder just like most of the other premium WordPress themes do. While some coding works are needed, it is relatively easy to customize Genesis themes (even for a beginner) due to the extensive knowledge base as well as support form the other users.
However, StudioPress is definitely one of the best premium WordPress themes for 2018 because it is very easy to use and highly affordable.
Last but not least in the list of best premium WordPress themes for 2018 is OptimizePress. Let's be really honest here. Some WordPress users may consider OptimizePress as a white elephant but I think it is still very effective.
OptimizePress is not the best premium WordPress theme for 2018 but it certainly has some juice left in it. For starters, it has been in the market for years (longer than most visual builders and themes) and some users are in love with it.
OptimizePress is best when it comes to creating simply yet highly effective landing pages with the pre-made templates below.
I want to be really upfront with you that even though OptimizePress is often considered old-school, it has several key factors that you should consider. Here's a list of what you can do with OptimizePress:
Secure membership portals
Sales and marketing pages
Product launch funnels
Free and pain training and course pages
Creating authority blogs
Webinar registration page
Mobile ready for all pages
Over 30 templates to choose from
Over 40 custom elements for customization purposes
Real-time LiveEditor system that offers WYSIWYG
Active market place to find for custom made templates and themes
So, what you can do to improve your WordPress security?
Did you notice two of the biggest contributor to WordPress security are hosting companies and WordPress themes? And heck, most of thought that WordPress security has always associated with weak security password.
WordPress is one the biggest blogging platform in the world and thus, it is not something new that it is targeted by hackers every single day.
Being said that, you should not take WordPress security for granted and therefore, you should act now.
Yes mate, right now ... by doing these easy steps!
1. Practice frequent updates
When was the last time you upgraded your WordPress or plugins? Usually, the latest updates are the one that has security patches or even newer features. If you have yet to get them updated, do it now. It wouldn't take you more than 5 minutes.
At least, do it for the sake of your website security. Seriously!
2. Perform housekeeping and clean up on your website regularly
Safety first when it comes to website security
Do you know that it is best to delete or uninstall those unwanted plugins you have on your database? Yes, even though they have been deactivated, you should ... and by all means remove them immediately. Having lesser plugins also provide a better website loading speed and not to forget, leaving a better experience for readers as well.
The main reasons is because there are many plugins which might pose a threat especially to WordPress. You have to remember that even though you might have deactivated them, they are still accessible in your website database.
3. Avoid using Admin username
This is the same mistake everyone does. You should never use Admin as your administrator ID. I know some WordPress sites advice users to create Admin username without any administrator access. For me, it is best to leave Admin untouched.
The first thing a hacker would try is to brute force login using Admin or Administrator ID. If you are using either one of those username, then you are basically making their life (of hacking) easier!
It is always best to have a mixture of words, symbols and numbers. Of course, you can further boost your WordPress security by adding capital letters as well.
4. Turn off membership registration
Proper 'security check' for members is vital to improve your WordPress security
Yes, I don't allow open registration at all for my sites. Instead, I'll manually add members myself. This is to ensure that I have complete control over security matters. Small security actions goes a long, long way when it comes to securing your WordPress site.
If everyone is able to register on your site freely, then you might have problem when you'll find spam bots and potential hackers trying to break the website security.
I truly understand that adding membership manually might be a real pain but it is worth it for those who really cares about security matters. Of course, if you are running a big company, uses WordPress and has a full list of members, Premise might be the best WordPress membership for you.
5. Changing table prefix
This is one hell of efficient method when it comes to WordPress security. Better WP Security plugin makes it sound easy with just a press of a button. No, it isn't that easy!
You got to learn how to change the prefix correctly or else, you are going to destroy your website ... literally. I changed the last round and I accidentally 'destroyed' my theme. Ouch!
6. Backup, backup and backup
Nothing goes more important than backup ... when it comes to website and stuffs. Lucky for you, there are some seriously good backup plugins and programs that work perfectly for WordPress. Why backup you may ask. Well, imagine you are being hacked or something bad happen to your site today. You can easily restore everything in a very short period since you have a backup file. What happens if you have no backup files? Then you would need to start back from scratch!
Real case scenario. Three months ago, I had several websites running and when 'something' bad happened to them, I practically lose hundreds of articles. Yes, I do backup but I only did once a month which is clearly, insufficient! However, it was good that at least, I still have a month old backup. If not, I would be doing everything from scratch ... and for over five websites!
7. Security plugins could help
Hello, you're being monitored.
Let's say you are less geeky and need help with securing your website. There are WordPress security plugins such as WordFence and Better WP Security which could provide above average security features with just a few clicks of the mouse. Can't decide which to use? You may find my review here, Wordfence vs Better Wp Security plugin.
Basically, these plugins will boost your WordPress security level and even provide you the well needed security notifications. Definitely worth a shot for those who prefer to be on the safe side.
8. Increase your security features with Content Delivery Network (CDN) services
Content delivery network or CDN could provide minimal security especially when you are using a free service. Well, some security is always better than no security right? No? 🙂
I always consider CDN to work very well especially when it comes to preventing Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks and also improving the website loading speed. Personally, if you are using a CDN for security, Incapsula has a very good security background while Cloudflare is much better of with improving website loading speed (with some security features).
9. Know your WordPress plugins
We all talk about WP everyday.
Now, ask yourself a question. How much do you know about your plugins?
I used to download and try all types of plugins last time and without even bother to check the reviews. Now, I do check their reviews first and even a little bit of Google-ing before installing anything. Some malicious plugins could be hacker's backdoor to your admin area and protected files. So, always have a good grip of what you are installing and decide if they are really worth the time (and your website security).
Nothing is too personal when it comes to website security!
10. The last level of security comes from you
Yes this is true! Who is your best, most accountable and trusted watch guard for your website? It's you for Christ's sake! You got to be on your toes and at least, check on basic changes done that you should be worried about. Let's take a simple example below.
I had Better WP Security installed on one of my niche website and every time changes are done to my site, I''ll receive an email notification immediately. Imagine small changes such as uploading an image to my gallery and it triggers an email notification. Good? Excellent I would say!
Thing is, you got to at least know what's happening on your website. Well, you might not have the technical skills to know what to do but at least, you're still able to alert your hosting provider or developer to check on that.
And when you think that are all ...
Hold on there tiger! The above are 10 important security tips when it comes to WordPress and I still have two more under my sleeves!
11. Choose the right WordPress theme for your website
Do you know that 29% of security problems originated from using the wrong WordPress themes? There's absolutely no denial that there are thousands of free WordPress themes out there. My personal advice?
Ditch those free themes for crying out loud! Jesus! Don't you see it? These themes might have some codes inside which could compromise your security. Not all, but certainly, I know a lot of them who actually are!
I don't get it ... I really, really don't get it on ... you know ... free WordPress themes.
If you are willing to buy premium WordPress theme, you have to be careful as well as not all themes are coded properly. Badly codes one will actually affect your website in many ways.
Last but not least, the infographic provided by WPTemplate proved that hosting companies play a huge role in terms of WordPress security. With 41% of website hacks originated from website hosting, I bet the figure explains it all.
Personally, I know there are so many hosting companies that are offering cheaper than usual hosting packages. I totally get it that hosting is a competitive industry but have you ever thought that cheap hosting might not provide even the slightest security features for your lovely website?
Let's take some 'stats' for example, shall we?
Yoast SEO, Chris Brogan, Jay Baer and Chris Pirillo uses Web Synthesis hosting
HTC, FourSquare, SoundCloud and Balsamiq uses WP Engine hosting
Volkswagen, Samsung, Sony and dribbble uses Media Temple hosting
Now, does all these makes any logical sense to you?
The above are examples of big brands trusting their hosting companies. Do you see why they don't go for cheaper corporate hosting? C'mon, give me a guess and I'll wait! Yes, you got it right mate. It's all about security.
When it comes to WordPress security, it is best to leave it to the pros if you have limited expertise.
Obviously, these brands are having a much bigger package but it doesn't mean that you can't join the big boys' club. There are packages below $20 which could work very well on your budget and most importantly, a piece of mind 24/7.
You may be using a package say $5 per month but you have to do all the job and maintenance yourself. Simply by adding $15 a month, you would can leave all the maintenance work to the pros ... for free.
With proper web hosting, you can forget about spending hundreds or thousands of dollars on webmasters who will take care of your websites (no offence though).
Last time, I was with GoDaddy and then, moved over to HostGator. Even though I was happy with my money spend with them, I wasn't too happy about the support. What can you expect from a $4 or less web hosting package right?
Again (and like what I always say), don't take my word for it. Go have a look at their websites have to offer.
If you think that SEO and all those blogging tips are important, think again. WordPress security is much more important nowadays. Thousands had done them wrongly and I certainly do not hope that you are one of them! Remember that hackers are always out there and you need to be ready for them.
Do you have any other WordPress security tips to share? If you do, drop me a comment below and let's discuss it over.
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