When I purchase a premium theme from GoCreate.me, do I get a custom website built just for me?
Yes and no. Creating a custom author website from scratch takes weeks so the price would be four digits and up, so you get a customized version of the Parallax for Writers theme. That’s the only way I can keep my costs low.
You pay for the lifetime right to use it on one website and you also get several hours of my time to install/activate your theme and apply some customizations like picking colors and fonts that work with your brand. The theme’s interface is very intuitive, and I provide you with detailed video tutorials on how to populate your book pages and modify every aspect of your site, if needed.
Can your themes be installed on WordPress.com?
Yes, but you need to pay for their business plan (so I can upload themes and plugins). I can help you switch to a self-hosted platform that would be less expensive than the WordPress.com business plan if you want. I’ll take care of all the technical details and recommend hosting if you’re not willing to spend $25/month on WP.com’s hosting.
To clarify, if you are paying for hosting anywhere else (BlueHost, GoDaddy, SiteGround, etc.), this question does NOT affect you. Your existing hosting plan should be fine (as long as it meets WordPress.org’s requirements listed here: https://wordpress.org/about/requirements/). I discuss the differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org here.
What will happen to my existing blog posts?
Your existing pages and posts should remain. The theme I will install will modify the “appearance” of your posts (colors, fonts, possibly layout), but they will remain visible. Please consult Pete Bauer’s site for an example of my premium theme installed on a site that had an existing blog. He didn’t have to do anything (other than possibly populate a “featured image,” but that would depend on whether your current theme uses featured images for blog posts). I’ll work with you to choose a color for your links. Your existing tags and categories will also stay as-is. The exception would be if your current theme/plugins used a custom way to create pages that would be deactivated when I deactivate the theme. I’ll do my best to warn you if I foresee such situation.
Do your premium themes come with a renewal fee?
No. It’s a one-time fee. You’ll be able to use the theme you bought forever on the one WordPress site where I installed the theme.
My theme has nothing to do with fees charged by your hosting/domain name registration/security certificate (if applicable). You have to pay for those annually, no matter which company you use.
How will the theme installation affect my live site?
It depends. We will go about it in one of several ways, depending on your hosting situation.
- Less ideal (and only option if using WordPress.com): I will work on your live site. That means the site may appear “a little glitchy” for a couple of hours max. By that I mean the “styling of it” may be a little off, the navigation won’t necessarily point to your new book pages yet (because you’ll have to populate them), but depending on your existing set up, we should be able to leave whatever existing “book pages” you have there, and when your new book pages/series pages are ready for prime time, we will modify the nav bar to point to those, and you could delete your older book pages. I’m also a night owl, so I could do the installation when you don’t expect much traffic.
- Separate demo/staging site: We create a duplicate of your site + set up my premium theme there (hidden from prying eyes, inside a subfolder, with password protection). Your hosting needs to support a second WordPress installation, not all plans allow it. You can populate your books and take your sweet time. Change your navigation, do whatever you need. Test and tweak until everything is perfect. Once you’re ready, we overwrite your existing WP installation with the new one we worked on. That means you will have to temporarily “put a hold” on posting anything on your real site (or post the same posts/pages on your hidden site) because we’ll overwrite the database (any new pages/posts/comments will be deleted when we do that).
The installation process is very high-touch. There will be lots of communication between us so I can understand your needs and customize the site based on your goals. GoCreate.me will likely spend around twelve hours dealing with your site. To be fully transparent (and to maximize the amount of customization we’ll offer for you), here’s what I’ll do with your time allocation:
- Information request. I list the things I need on each premium theme’s page, so be ready ahead of time (full administrator credentials and specific assets such as images, newsletter code, sales blurb, etc.).
- WordPress Installation (if not already installed). Most authors already have a site, but if not, I’ll install WordPress for you on the hosting of your choice. I can also recommend hosting services, if needed.
- Premium theme and plugin installation/activation. I will license the premium plugin(s) needed to make your premium theme work and install and activate my premium theme.
- Social icon inclusion. I will upload images and include the URLs if you give them to me.
- Retailer button inclusion. I will upload images so you can connect your retailer links to all the major players.
- Book Page inclusion. I will populate ONE of your book pages (so you have a working example you can refer to). You’ll have to set up the rest of your books on your own but I promise it will be easy and intuitive.
- Landing page setup*. I can set up one or two sample landing pages (but you need to provide the image + text + form code to connect to your newsletter or wherever).
- Newsletter connection. I will NOT set up your newsletter list for you. You need to already have picked your newsletter service provider and have a list/form set up. Instructions on how to do that will vary depending on your provider (MailChimp, ConvertKit, aWeber, ActiveCampaign, MailerLite, etc.). I will insert the form code (provided by your newsletter service) and possibly add text/image (provided by you) and make that newsletter sign up look good in your sidebar, slideshow, and/or footer (placement will vary based on the chosen premium theme).
- Name, tagline, logo customization. If you use a tagline and/or logo (both optional), I will make sure they will look right on various screen widths.
- Homepage header image/slideshow creation. Depending on the premium theme, I will upload at least one image for the slideshow (or static header image) and connect it to whatever URL. This does NOT include the creation of such images. Images must be provided by you (or extra costs will apply).
- Color and font customization. I’ll do my best to match whatever branding you’ve got going using Google web fonts and custom colors (or background image if you provide one).
- Responsiveness adjustments. I will review every page template on various screen widths and make small adjustments (if needed) to make sure your site looks good on various devices.
If you need extra customization above and beyond what I wrote above, we can discuss your needs, and I’ll provide a quote (separately).
Can I install the premium theme myself?
No. I can’t sell you the theme without installing it for the following reasons:
- As part of my custom installation, I also upload and activate premium plugin(s) for which I own a developer license so you don’t have to renew it annually. In order for your site’s installation to comply with those premium plugins’ terms and conditions, I cannot resell or bundle their plugin code into my theme;
- The installation requires advanced technical knowledge and everyone’s setup is slightly different, so there would be no easy way for me to explain how to do things that would work for every writer.
- You are better off writing books, wouldn’t you agree?
Can I copy and reuse your theme on more than one website or (re)sell it to another writer?
No. I’ve priced it as low as I can so authors can afford them but I still have to spend around twelve hours to install the theme, activate it, and style it for your needs.
Would you like your readers to give away your books (or resell them) to other readers without sending royalties your way? (Didn’t think so.)
I heard that you did David Gaughran’s site, which has two separate looks, one for fiction and one for non-fiction. Can you do that for me?
His site was a custom job.
If you have multiple pen names that you want to combine into one website, please contact me, and I can give you a quote for a custom theme built just for you. The majority of the features on David’s site (except for the two looks) are available as part of the Parallax for Writers theme.