We hope to provide some clarity here over the scope of work of the support offered for themes vs. customizations customers may wish to pursue.
Feast Design Co. sells food blogging themes, which save you hundreds of hours trying to design your website for best practices.
Per the product page, we provide instructions and support to set up your blog like the demo site.
Beyond that, you’re looking at customizations which requires custom programming work from services like the ones we recommend at https://feastdesignco.com/how-to/customization-referrals/
The reason that this policy is in place is because we have thousands of customers who do everything different. Themes modify the stylistic options on your website only, with functionality limited to what’s found on our demo sites.
There’s literally no way we can help thousands of people do customizations – not only would it be too time consuming, but it’s not built into our pricing.
For some context, full custom websites cost $10,000’s to $100,000’s and require carefully negotiated contracts with programmers who charge $100/hr+ and frequently run over budget.
We don’t offer full custom website builds.
When you purchase a theme, you’re paying to access the files that would let you set up your website to look like the demo site, without having to write the coding yourself or hiring a designer. Buying a theme is completely unnecessary, if you want to put the hundreds of hours of work into designing the website yourself.
Our themes get you set up with industry-leading best practices, costing $100,000s, for about $100. For more information, see: what am I paying for?
The $75-$125 fee is a small token that is spread out over many customers, to pay for the hundreds of thousands of dollars we’ve spent paying professional programmers, consultants and designers to build the themes. Here are some of the things that have gone into our themes, which you’d have to pay for independently if you went for a fully custom build:
- Industry-leading food theme designs from our one and only Shay Bocks focusing on layouts, usability, image sizes, font sizes, whitespace
- Hand-off to professional WordPress + Genesis developers to translate those designs into usable code with minimal conflicts
- Constant testing and iteration for stylistic edge-cases across browser and devices
- Community feedback for features, which is sent back into design and development and testing
- Consulting with other designers to stay up to date with best practices
- Conversion rate optimization (+UX) consultants to reduce bounce rates and increase time on site
- SEO consultants for search engine page design compliance, error checking, on-going guidance on best practices
- Feedback from hosting companies for design code performance, pagespeed optimization and best practices
From there, you need to develop the skills and knowledge to run a website. If you want a food blog that looks like our demo sites, most of the work is already done and you can focus on baking delicious recipes and snapping snappy food pics. If you want customizations beyond the demo, then it’s time to roll up your sleeves and put your thinking cap on, because there’s a lot to learn.
The themes don’t include lifetime access to people to do the work on your behalf.
You can find out more about Feast Design Co. and what we’re all about at: Principles and Best Practices
And remember, the most important question to ask is: why am I making this change? Without a clear, compelling reason tied to helping your visitors or improving business metrics, customizations are a waste of time.
What we do (because we love our customers) is help them use the theme files to set their website up like the demo site using our tutorials. We also offer a support ticket system which we use to improve the tutorials.
We’re happy to point customers in the right direction for things that aren’t necessarily part of the demo, but suggest trying Google first, and reaching out when it isn’t turning up the answer you’re looking for. This is meant to be infrequent, rather than to be abused as a personal assistant by those who really need the help of a full time developer.
We also highly recommend Andrew @ Nerdpress for bloggers who aren’t able to manage the on-going technical maintenance of operating a blog.
Our themes are pre-built using best practices, and are designed by experts in UI/UX. Customizations are fine, but aren’t the best use of your time: food blogging is!
There are no refunds. Once you have the files, there’s no way to ensure that they won’t be used, so all sales are final.
The following are things that lie outside our expertise and are unrelated to our themes, so we don’t offer support for them:
- page builders (beaverbuilder, elementor, divi, themify)
- Note: WordPress Gutenberg is likely to make pagebuilders obsolete
- carousels / image sliders
- wordpress multi-site
- Multi-language and translation
- Use of the Jetpack plugin / services
Types of customizations
Customizations generally fall into 3 categories:
- CSS customizations via “Additional CSS” is unsupported
- This is actually relatively easy to maintain, simply copy from the old theme, and paste into the new theme
- CSS customizations via style.css is incredibly difficult to maintain, and not a good practice
- Function customizations via functions.php is unsupported
- Customizations using plugins not specifically listed on the theme page, is unsupported
Note that all of these involve modifying your site to not look or function like the demo site, and are unsupported.