My epiphany over the New year which got me thinking. Actually it was Ana Segota co-founder of Anariel Design that got me thinking.
We were talking literally a moment ago about some list posts and how they are quite frankly crap. Ana made this statement:
mostly they didn't tested anything but still writing the best one
— Ana Segota (@Ana_Segota) January 16, 2017
Ana’s first language is not English for anyone calling her out on her phrasing, although judging by some people on Twitter you’d think it was her first language! That aside, we were talking about list posts, how many there are and she hit upon a fact.
A salient one at that.
List post authors of 50 of this or 30 of that have never even tested all of the themes. I mean how could you? I know when I did some of mine, I didn’t have the time to cover each and every theme or plugin. It’s not possible.
It’s through this conversation I decided to do something about it. Something no one else dare do. Something a little off kilter if you will. Something that needs to be done.
Now before some of you call me out for going all high and mighty, or spot a post that’s still technically a list post on WPin of themes etc.
(I have been deleting them and redirecting them BTW let me know in the comment section if you spot one)
I wanted to conduct an experiment.
One which I hope will change the way things are done.
As consumers, we are always shopping around. It’s par for the course, we seek deals, information reviews and more. It’s through this process we shape our purchasing decisions, based of course on the opinions of reputable websites.
Buying themes, WordPress plugins and finding services is no different to someone looking for information on buying a bicycle. We use the web to seek answers to questions. Sometimes we find them, sometimes we are left wanting.
So, back to the experiment then shall we?
I picked a topic. Something many consumers may well look to, well those in the restaurant or food blogging sector anyway. I like food. So I thought why not.
I Googled the following on Google.com: Restaurant WordPress themes
See below for what I was greeted with:
First result is ThemeForest, no surprise there. They must spend a ton of money making sure their marketplace has visibility. I was expecting that in fairness.
However. The first organic search result for this term was actually entitled:
30+ Best WordPress Restaurant Themes to Create a Responsive Restaurant Website 2016
With much haste did I navigate to this. Surely these cannot be the best WordPress restaurant themes for 2016? Responsive ones at that. Surely not.
So I delved deeper down the rabbit hole.
As the title suggests there are 30 WordPress themes for restaurants that are responsive and labelled the best. On what basis are they labelled the best? Have they been reviewed? Has each and every single theme been reviewed?
Have they been installed? Have they been tested? Have they been put through there paces? From initial installation through to findings?
I decided to investigate further.
Each and every listing on the theme list post has plenty of text. Plenty of text. Highlighting features, how you could use it and pertinent information pertaining to the theme at hand.
All great stuff in fairness. Like the text it looks good, it’s sales’y without being overbearing. This guy should right product descriptions, he sells a good game.
I took every restaurant WordPress theme mentioned in this list post and searched it against the internals of the website to see what I could find.
Out of the 30 WordPress themes listed. Only 3 were actually reviewed.
Yup, recommending the best to people is all well and good. Recommending the best without any insight into why they are the best, save for glorifying the description is a dangerous game.
Colorlibs is listing the best Restaurant themes that are responsive. No harm in that, however they cost money. They cost real hard earned bucks to me and you.
Of course the owner of Colorlibs gets a commission every time you click and purchase a theme from them. I make no bones about it, so do I.
Where we are different, and perhaps to the chagrin of developers as opposed to consumers. The reason is thus:
Colorlibs get’s traffic, probably a sh*t ton in fairness. So if you want to market your WordPress theme then approaching them for a mention is a good way to go.
In truth the 3 reviews upon reading them were pandering and nothing of substance. At no point were pitfalls mentioned whatsoever. I don’t care who you are, no developer is truly happy with their theme, hell changelogs wouldn’t exist if they were.
Developers are always trying to evolve their products, it’s user feedback that does this. Not puff pieces to simply promote a WordPress theme and increase sales.
If you’re that kind of developer, you will fail. Big time. Without constructive feedback, how would devs better their products? Get my drift? Anyways on to the next.
48 Best WordPress Restaurant Themes 2017
Athemes leads with the 48 Best WordPress Restaurant Themes 2017. This should be good it’s relevant seeing as it’s 2017 and there’s 48 of them and all.
So I decided to peruse the site and search for the themes mentioned and see if they reviewed them. I got to 23 found no reviews, no mention of some of them except for mentions in other theme round ups. I would have continued, however I got bored, there probably are reviews in their somewhere. Somewhere. Not a good sign though is it?
They do the same as Colorlibs, lots of text with no substance. All with persuasive copy to get you to click on the referral link to purchase the theme and get a kick back.
I don’t have a problem with affiliate links, they have to be justified though. they have had to had something insightful something worthy of me warranting a click. Perhaps with a genuine opinion, not reworded product copy from the theme sites listing.
10+ Best Restaurant WordPress Themes
CodeinWP up next with a post entitled 10 Best Restaurant WordPress themes. Lets see what CodeinWP has to offer then shall we?
Well the saving grace with CodeinWP is that they are more brazen. They don’t have a lot of text, no pitfalls, no real information apart from reworded text from a product description.
I can’t really have a moan about CodeinWP, as they have made no real effort to even conceal the fact these posts are crap and offer no real information to you the consumer. Fair play to them. Stellar work.
Oh and by the way I couldn’t find any reviews of the themes listed, there probably were somewhere, however you’d link to your review on something like this wouldn’t you? Well I would.
Top 20 WordPress Restaurant Themes
Following on trend of CodeinWP, Wp Gurus Top 20 WordPress Restaurant Themes is as just as brazen. See an image below of what I mean:
Well that’s useful intel. I guess I’ll go buy it? Yup it’s not very insightful, doesn’t give anyone anything that the product listing wouldn’t have. Is there any reviews of these products? Let’s take a look.
Er no. No there isn’t.
What happens when you drop the ‘s’ on restaurant wordpress themes?
Funnily enough this happens:
WTF? I guess we’re all fu*ked as consumers then, thanks Google, you utter, utter tool.
This is the problem is it not?
As long as these types of sites are given oxygen, it’s all we’ll ever see. It’s all we’ll ever know as consumers. I asked Google a question, it give me a raft of spammy affiliate driven garbage.
The only reason these types of posts exist is to gain traffic and make money. There is no other reason other than that. These sites mentioned offered no real insight into the restaurant themes in question, yet they will no doubt be shared across the web like the proverbial plague they are.
I guess you could say I’m bad mouthing them. Frankly I don’t care how it comes across. I’ve made mistakes, I’ve created round up posts (deleting them bit by bit) and have made crap junk posts in an effort to garner traffic.
I’m trying to redeem myself, I’m trying to help. Will Athemes, Colorlibs, WP Guru’s and CodeinWP’s traffic falter as result of this blog post? I’d like to think it would, however I doubt it will.
It can, if you change. If you stop sharing these types of blog posts, perhaps, just perhaps we’ll start to see better results when it comes to searching for themes and WordPress plugins. Just perhaps.
Right now it’s time for me to drop the mic, and exit stage left. If you have a comment or would to give your opinion on the above, please do so. Look forward to your feedback, as ever.