As much of the WordPress themes market continues to move towards the premium (paid) model, it can sometimes be a chore for the consumer trying to find the best value for your dollar. There are certainly a few overpriced themes out there, but with a little effort you can also find a few premium themes you can find which are often undervalued.
When it comes to value, I usually recommend people start by looking at the various theme clubs available. Of the theme clubs out there, there is no doubt the best overall value is with the Elegant Themes club. To give you an idea of what I’m talking about, lets take a look at their latest release, the new eBusiness theme:
eBusiness WordPress Theme
You can view the live demo of the eBusiness theme here.
The eBusiness theme also includes a very impressive control panel, of which the author lists the following features:
Design Layout – The layout tab houses some of the major overlying options that effect the structure and appearance of your website.
- Color Schemes – eBusiness comes with three skins, and each skin comes in three colors. You can switch between these 9 different variations at any time from the drop-down menu.
- Website Structure – The essence of eBusiness is to act as a CMS, creating a page-based layout. I have, however, included the option to bypass the page-based homepage in favor of a normal blog layout. You can switch between Page Structure and Blog Structure at any time.
- Footer Options – You will notice that each page has a widgetized footer on the bottom.
Homepage Options – The homepage tab allows you to manage your homepage. If you are using blog style then most of these options do not apply, but if you are using the Page-based system then you will have to use this area to set up your homepage.
- Slider Control – You will notice that the demo features 3 sliding elements on the top of the homepage. These are managed via the Homepage tab. Here you can customize the content text, the title of the tab, the text used in the button, the thumbnail image (which is automatically re-sized) and an optional read more link, which can be pointed anywhere. You can also choose how many sliding elements to display (up to 3).
- Pages Control - The content on the homepage is made up of WordPress pages. You will create a page in wp-admin and then define the page to be used in the Homepage options tab. Simply input the page id of the pages you want to use and they will appear. You can also choose how many pages you want to use (up to4).
- Blog Scroller – Even if you are using the page-based system you can still have a blog area on your site. For this reason I have included a blogroll on the homepage with a link to your most recent posts. This can be turned off if you don’t plan to have a blog section. You can choose how many recent posts to display. You can also customize the RSS link if you want to point it towards your feedburner account.
Blog Setup – If you are using the Blog Structure, or if you plan to include a blog within your Page-based website, you can customize your blog here.
- Post Format - You can choose between “Blog Style” mode or “Default” mode. The Blog Style mode displays your posts in full on index pages, while Default mode automatically truncates the post to create a short preview with a “read more” link.
- Categories Bar – The categories bar, with links to your various blog categories, only appears on blog pages. However, if you are using the blog as simply a recent news section, and don’t plan to have several categories, you can turn off this categories bar.
- Further Post Preview Control – In addition to editing the length of the post previews you can also adjust the size of the thumbnail, as well as enable/disable the “read more” link and post info bar. All thumbnails are automatically re-sized, cropped, and cached, via TimThumb which means you can change the size of your thumbnails instantly at the click of a button.
Navigation Options – The navigation options allow you to customize the navigation bar. You can use this to exclude pages from the navigation, adjust the order of the links, add a link to your Blog section (if you are using one) and so on. Both the categories and pages navigation bars can be edited here.
Advertising Management – As with the rest of my themes I have included a banner management system. You can add 125×125 and 468×60 banners and choose how many 125×125 banners you want to display (up to 8). You can also choose where you want banners to be display. You can add them to your pages sidebar, blog sidebar or both. You also have the option to disable them completely.
How To Get a License for the eBusiness Theme
If you’d like to give the eBusiness theme a try, it isn’t free, but it almost is. Currently this theme, along with ALL of the themes released by Elegant Themes (close to 20 available currently), is available for only $19.99! Nick, the web designer behind Elegant Themes, has also upheld a pretty impressive release schedule, offering up a new theme just about every month (which should give you close to 12 new themes each calendar year), many of which can be viewed in their theme gallery.