Should you buy a pre-built theme for $49 – $149 OR should you spend considerably more for a developer to custom build a theme from scratch for your project? This is a crucial decision that not only affects the quality and size of the actual code, but also seriously affects the long term usability and upgradability of your code.
Custom-built themes are leaning only include the functionality and styling that is actually required per project. Alternatively, pre-built themes are not purpose-built and in order to be attractive enough for people to buy, they are seriously bloated and a developer will either launch is with the bloat or try to disable all the unneeded functionality in a retail theme. Custom-built themes are also built in a way that the majority of developers can understand and progressively improve upon over time. Continuous improvement after a website launch is a critical and often overlooked portion of the long-term cost and projected life of the website project. We find that retail themes are often difficult to expand upon, and when you do, you break the upgrade path.