ThemeIsle Review: The Theme Shop Treasure for WordPress Pirates
If you can’t appreciate a good pirate pun, then ThemeIsle might not be the place for you.
This WordPress theme store is captained by a group of developers, designers and all-around WordPress buccaneers who aren’t afraid to do things a little differently. They’re big on personality and transparent in their service, creating a place where—in their words—”clients are called pirates, and the word pirate doesn’t mean bad guy.”
And while they’ve rolled with the pirate theme throughout their whole website, you’ll be happy to know that their collection of WordPress themes isn’t in the least bit nautical—though what you do with yours is entirely up to you!
In fact, the themes are purpose-built for a range of industries, offering intelligent coding and well-thought-out designs by a small team of people who know what they’re doing. ThemeIsle is a great choice for site owners who don’t want to have to spend time coding, and who’d rather be able to easily customize and update their website directly from the theme builder.
It’s also reasonably affordable if you’re interested in paying for premium themes.
All in all, ThemeIsle is a reliable theme store that offers well-coded, visually appealing WordPress themes suited to a wide variety of industries. It’s worth a look no matter what level of skill you’re at.
And now for a longer, more detailed ThemeIsle review, keep reading!
A Bit of ThemeIsle History
ThemeIsle started back in 2012, on an island in Thailand called Ko Lanta (and if that doesn’t sound like the greatest place on earth to ever start anything, I don’t know what does!). What they’ve sought out to do is quite simple: To make good, modern and well-developed themes accessible to everyone.
They want their themes and designs to be easy for anyone to use and get value from, regardless of experience or level of technical ability. For ThemeIsle, it’s about “no more high maintenance costs. No more expensive training to teach you how to ‘get WordPress.’ And what’s most important, no more 20-year-old designs.” Again, those are their own words.
Cool people, right?
The team has since developed a solid collection of WordPress themes, with a current offering of 21 free themes and 17 premium themes—as well as a range of plugins to support them.
And while they’ve now settled their headquarters in Bucharest, Romania, they continue to live the pirate life (even if that just means talking like one while nurturing a good, healthy sense of adventure).
Swashbuckling ThemeIsle Features
ThemeIsle have created a theme store with lots of personality and a great range of products, with many features both in their themes and in the store itself that make them a standout.
Huge Range of Unique Themes
One thing in particular that they do very well—especially in comparison to other WordPress theme stores—is their diversity across the range of themes.
A lot of the themes are built to suit specific industries, categories or product niches—for example, there’s photography, magazines, law, construction, health and wellness, and the list goes on.
Upgrades from Free to Paid Themes
Almost every premium theme that they have available to buy is also available as a free (lite) version, giving users the opportunity to take most of their themes for a proper test run with just a few less features.
This setup lets people determine for themselves whether they like the theme enough to upgrade to a full-featured paid version, as well as still allowing them to access premium-quality themes for free if that’s what they prefer.
Full Demo Versions of Themes
Every theme also has an excellent demo, with the option to play around with both the front-end and the back-end so that you can preview not only how it looks and feels, but also how it works. It’s a simple feature, but one that helps make it just a little bit easier for users to decide which theme is right for them—and anything that makes the experience better for the user is worthy of note!
The demo also allows you to preview each theme in a variety of screen sizes (both portrait and landscape) so you can see how it displays across various devices.
Mobile Responsive Themes
Which of course leads into the importance of responsiveness. No modern website can succeed today if it’s not mobile responsive and doesn’t create a seamless viewing experience across desktop, tablet and mobile—something every ThemeIsle theme does.
This means you can rest assured that any theme you choose will automatically work beautifully across all devices without you having to make it so.
ThemeIsle is also big on the actual design of each theme, putting careful consideration into their purpose and making sure the design works in collaboration with that. On top of intelligent designs that are clean and attractive to look at.
Ease of Use
And of course, a WordPress theme couldn’t possibly compete in today’s market if it wasn’t user-friendly and easy to customize, and all the ThemeIsle themes tick that box too.
What’s especially great about the store here though, is that the free themes are just as detailed as the premium ones. They all give you a smooth, easy-to-use admin panel where you can configure your site down to the last detail with just a few clicks of a button—no coding required.
Updated, Fresh Material
Another standout feature of ThemeIsle is their reliable, frequent updates to both premium and free themes alike. WordPress is always being updated, so having a theme developer that updates their themes just as often is very important if you want a website that keeps running smoothly and securely with the latest version.
Range of Plugins
And finally, something definitely worthy of a mention is their very own range of plugins, all designed to complement any one of their themes and enhance their functionality.
While they’re no WooCommerce or Yoast, they’re a great place to start expanding the range of your website and give you access to a variety of extra functionality including custom logins, interactive sliders, social media integration, reviews and ratings, custom posts, RSS feed aggregation and more.
The Booty: A Huge Range of Themes
With all this talk of theme selection, let’s take a look at them below.
Free and Premium ThemeIsle Themes
Zillah (free) — This is beautiful blogging/magazine theme that focuses on displaying content in a way that makes users want to keep scrolling. Zillah is quick to set up, simple to customize and translation-ready from the start.
Naturelle (free) / Naturelle Pro (premium)— A one-page theme with a green, natural feel to the design. Earthy and inviting, Naturelle Pro has a touch of nature across the whole design, making it a theme that’s both warm and professional.
All in all, it’s stylish and elegant with parallax scrolling, ideal for sellers of clean, organic products or services.
ShopIsle (free) / ShopIsle Pro (premium) — One of ThemeIsle’s most popular themes, ShopIsle is a stylish and streamlined e-commerce theme with endless customization options to build a beautiful online store. It’s full of features to make it quick and simple to take your products to market.
IsleMag (free) — Vivid and eye-catching, IsleMag is a contemporary magazine theme that knows how to use color to your advantage. It also includes a carousel slider to help you tell stories and create a richer experience.
Reviewzine (free) — Another e-commerce option for when you’re selling online, Reviewzine also features an advanced review chart where your customers can rate the quality of your products.
Zerif Lite (free) / Zerif Pro (premium) — A one-page WordPress theme that immerses the user as they scroll, Zerif Lite is simple yet bold and puts products or a portfolio beautifully on display. Zerif Pro is packed full of features for hassle-free design, and it comes with five child themes included for one-click customization.
Parallax One (free) — A beautiful one-page theme that adds a dynamic parallax effect to your website. Parallax One makes an elegant personal blog or commercial site and provides countless design options to make it uniquely yours.
TheMotion Lite (free) / TheMotion (premium) — This is an elegant video theme that puts the focus on movement. TheMotion displays content beautifully and has flexible settings so you can add your own personal touch. It’s designed for videographers and video bloggers, letting you tell your story in motion. It’s also WooCommerce-compatible so you can make sales directly on your website.
Belise Lite (free) / Belise (premium) — Designed for restaurants, cafes and any other eatery that wants to showcase their food, Belise Lite has a beautiful, clean presentation that puts a spotlight on your photography—bringing out the best in any image, particularly food photography.
Oblique (free) / Oblique Pro (premium)— A modern and elegant theme that features a unique, slanted design in keeping with its name. Oblique lets you customize small details in the layout that make a big difference. The Pro version is particularly popular with bloggers, as it features lots of unique design elements to make your site stand out.
Amadeus (free) / Amadeus Pro (premium) — Minimalist and clean, Amadeus is a beautiful and professional blog theme that lets you engage your audience with features like video embedding and a stylish social header. Amadeus Pro features plenty of widget areas, alternative homepage layouts and more.
Hestia (free) / Hestia Pro (premium)— A material design theme crafted to provide a neat and clean display of products. Hestia is WooCommerce-ready, SEO-friendly and fast loading for a great user experience. Hestia Pro can be customized down to every last details, and it’s ideal for any industry, including those with e-commerce requirements.
Azera Shop (free) — A WooCommerce-compatible e-commerce theme that puts the focus on your products. Azera Shop is clean and simple and gives you the option to include testimonials and a blog.
Azera Shop Luxury (free) — A slightly cleaner, more minimalist version of the initial Azera Shop, Azera Shop Luxury has all the features you need to build a reliable online store, no matter what you sell.
Llorix One Lite (free) — Smart and professional, Llorix One Lite is well-suited to business and commercial websites. This theme has a one-page design with parallax scrolling for a smooth, minimalist feel.
FlyMag (free) / FlyMag Pro (premium) — A stylish WordPress theme designed for magazines and news sites, FlyMag has beautifully crafted pages that displays content in an engaging way. It offers bold content display, high-quality images and flawless customization through a variety of templates.
LawyeriaX Lite (free) / LawyeriaX (premium) — Neat, simple and professional, LawyeriaX has a clean layout and color scheme that can be customized with a huge range of options. If you couldn’t guess from the name, LawyeriaX Lite is a theme purposefully designed for law firms, with a modern interface and sophisticated feel.
Constructzine Lite (free) / Constructzine Pro (premium) — Another giveaway from the name, Constructzine Lite was built to suit the specific needs of construction companies, but it could really work for any business wanting to increase leads. It’s particularly focused on lead generation and high conversions.
BookRev Lite (free) / BookRev (premium)— Perfect for reviewing products and services. BookRev Lite lets you customize the built-in slider, feature a highlight of the day and more. There’s a clean ratings display built right into the theme.
Metro CreativeX (free) — A bold, urban theme that lets you customize features right down to post format, Metro CreativeX would work wonderfully as either a commercial website or blog.
RokoPhoto Lite (free) / RokoPhoto (premium) — ThemeIsle’s number one photography theme, RokoPhoto is fully customizable and designed to put your highest-quality images on show. Headers are generous for an eye-catching first impression.
Arkitek (premium) — A clean, multipurpose theme that would work beautifully as an online store, a portfolio or even a personal blog. Arkitek has an elegant display that draws people in.
Woga (premium) — A theme designed for yoga and gym studios or health based industries, Woga features a built-in BMI calculator and daily program to provide your audience with more useful resources.
Caresland (premium) — Bright and attractive, Caresland is aimed at kindergartens but could really be used by any website that wants to benefit from a built-in and customizable slider, and custom events features.
Plumbelt (premium) — A minimalist theme with a focus on the needs of the plumbing industry, Plumbelt is big on showcasing your services and ensuring customers can contact you easily.
The Price of the Plunder
Here’s the trick—ThemeIsle doesn’t sell themes individually. You have to sign up for one of their membership plans.
They currently have three (all pirate themed, of course!) which are priced at $89, $149 and $189 per year, and each plan gives you access to all of the premium themes plus updates, corresponding levels of support, hosting and more.
They also have a money-back guarantee, which is always assuring!
The Downsides of the Pirate Life
Now, it wouldn’t be a proper ThemeIsle review without a balanced argument, right?
As great overall as ThemeIsle is, there are definitely a couple of things that it could work on improving.
Firstly, the cost. It isn’t cheap. Now, don’t get me wrong, they deserve to be paid for their work and should absolutely charge a fee for their product. And I can’t stress enough how fantastic it is that they offer such quality and diversity in their free products, to the point where you could actually get by very well without ever upgrading to a premium version.
But, for the people who do want that extra functionality or support, the cost is quite high compared to their competitors.
And on that point, the support you get with free themes is limited to a sort of “take a ticket” fashion. ThemeIsle only offer email support, and the unhappy customers they do have really only have the lack of support to complain about.
It should be noted here though, that over 85% of their reviews are positive ones and it would seem that most people realize that you can’t expect priority support without paying for it.
Final Thoughts on ThemeIsle
ThemeIsle is a reliable WordPress theme store that offers a variety of free and premium themes to their pirate clan (read: clients). While the best support is reserved for paying customers, free users still get access to a wide range of well-coded, attractive and easy-to-use themes that are looked after and updated just as often as their paid counterparts.
So if you’re not doing anything too complicated with your website and are willing to sacrifice super-efficient customer support, you can get a pretty solid deal without having to pay a cent. And on the other hand, if you’re happy to pay up for one of their plans, you’ll get a fair bit extra for your dollars.
Either way, ThemeIsle makes it very easy for you to get started with a great-looking website and take it from there—to do with what you will, me hearties!
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