Let me first give it props.
The Divi theme, by Elegant Themes, helps you create beautiful websites. Of that, there is no question.
And you can create them without knowing any code. That makes it even more amazing. Everyone that visits my website raves about it, is already using it, or wants to buy it.
I get that. And if you use it, you’ll have a beautiful site too. But if you do use it, I just want to highlight a consequence of your selection.
You’ll likely need to keep using it for a very long time (or be prepared to hire someone to clean up your content later).
It all starts out so innocently
When you first install the theme, the theme is very helpful. It comes with pre-created layouts for you.
You have to admit, that’s pretty nice. It saves you tons of time coding anything.
When you see what it does for you, you’re happy you didn’t have to do it yourself.
That’s a lot of stuff to configure, just to get your page to look good.
But now the job is easy – just tweak the content to match your text. Right?
What if you switch?
I’m not anti-Divi. Seriously.
But let’s just ask the question.
What happens if you decide you want to switch to a new theme?
I’ve often talked about shortcodes and what happens when you change a theme or stop using a plugin.
Let’s look at what happens.
First I changed the theme from Divi to Twenty Twelve – a clean and simple theme that you can download for free to use with WordPress.
This is what my home page had looked like.
Now what did it look like?
And that’s just the first part of the page. It goes on like that for miles.
And when you go to edit the page?
Not all that is pretty is helpful
I want you to calculate what it would cost you to go thru every page on your site and strip out all these shortcodes.
I want you to evaluate what happens if you ever change your mind.
Because you should be doing that before you start with a theme. Any theme.
Just because the resultant site is beautiful doesn’t mean it’s healthy. And it doesn’t mean that what started out so inexpensive will stay that way.
The cost of changing your site’s theme might cost you as much as a custom theme.
So be careful.
That’s why I suggest you look at other options.
I’m not saying you have to believe me. You should try this stuff on your own.
Yes, there is now a new Builder plugin. But changing themes and deploying the plugin won’t make things perfect. It will be better but there still is no magic bullet, and no migration plugin that I know of – to turn things into pure code that easily moves between themes.
But if you, like me, like the idea of creating a nice looking theme with drag and drop features, panels of content, and more, there here are two options to consider;
Beaver Builder – a plugin-based solution (from the start)