Premium vs. Free Themes?


Espresso Dependent
Nov 6, 2019
Do you believe it's necessary for your community to have a premium theme instead of a free theme?

For me I guess it depends on the software and what is available for the free themes; though I'd rather invest in a theme that looks nice and can be easily customizable to what I need, and if I cannot get that from a free theme, I'll dip into the premium themes. From experience I feel like free themes are hard to make the community your own and make it look like yours, instead of other communities using the same theme.

What do you think?


Popular Member
Dec 8, 2019
I think the free forum software and free theme is a good combination. But if you are planning on getting paid forum software then getting paid and much professional theme is a good option. I have seen many people wasting many with the dark themes when their niche is something that requires clean interface and the forum design. So on that note I'd say that premium themes are a good option if you wish to monetize those sources.


Active Member
May 10, 2020
Free options are just as good as premium forum software, if not, better. If your prepared to dedicate and devote a lot of time to creating your own style sheet or editing the CSS stylesheet, free forum styles might be the best way forward. Beware though, this strategy may cost you a lot of your personal time when on the other hand, you could just pay for the convenience.


Whipped Cream
Apr 30, 2020
I think if you want to make the community stand out you should get a premium theme at least, that's if you can't afford to make or buy a completely bespoke one that is.

Free themes are great but it makes the forum look the same as every other site using it too.


Active Member
Jul 22, 2020
I just recently hired a graphics designer to make a custom theme for my first forum. I must say he did a wonderful job. I think having your own custom theme will really help make your forum unique instead of using free themes and such.