There are some beautiful commercial Joomla templates out there from companies like Joomla Bamboo, Gavick, SiteGround, Shape5 and many others. And if your budget is extremely tight, a commercial template might be right for your organization, especially if you need a quick way to get yourself out on the internet.
But for clients of Numinous Productions, we prefer to build each and every Joomla template from scratch. It requires more work on our part, and costs more to produce than a prebuilt commercial template, but there are some major advantages to our home cooked templates:
- Lean templates are also much easier to tweak and expand down the road. A template index.php file with only 120 lines of code with is much easier to tweak than a index.php file with several hundred lines of code (or more). Commercial templates may be cheaper up front, but can cost two to three times as much down the road to make simple structural upgrades because of the template's inherent complexity.
- Custom templates have just the right number of module positions. Most of the templates built by Numinous Productions have 10 module positions or less (versus the 25 to 50 positions normally found in commercial templates). This cuts down on confusion and keeps website management easier for end users.
- Our templates use module position names that are human readable and logical. Instead of "Position-0", "Position-1", "Position-2", we use names like "Top", "Bottom", "Left" and "Right". We want our end users to have a good idea where the module position is located without reading through documentation and hoping to find a preview image.
- We compare Commercial Templates to semitrucks. They can "haul" a lot, and take your content just about anywhere you want it go, but they are also complicated to use. Our templates are extremely simple and straightforward. They operate in the background, and make your website look great without lots of extra effort on your part.
- Commercial templates can make your business look great, or they can make your business look like every other business using that template. Creating templates from scratch means we can design a website that is just as unique as you are, and can utilize your organization's style, colors, fonts, imagery and more. Setting yourself apart from your competitors online is well worth that investment. We can even build a Joomla template around a Photoshop design if you have an inhouse designer.
- Support for commercial templates is extremely spotty in our experience. Some companies are great, and will actually answer your questions and tweak their templates upon request. Other companies will sell you a template, and then are difficult to work with after the fact. The Joomla Forums are full of users who have trouble getting commercial template developers to help them. That's not the case with our custom templates. We'd love to help you tweak your template, especially if that means your website is more successful and your day is made easier.