Elegant Themes is a formidable force that keeps growing and shows no sign of stopping or slowing down. Having made their mark in the greater WordPress world, Elegant Themes, along with their most popular product Divi, have changed the way in which WordPress developers work: by giving web users a platform for creation and expression that extends far beyond the realms of simply making a website.
Following Word Camp 2016 Orange County, we wanted to publish a blog post that would share with the Divi Community a bit more insight into why Elegant Themes is such a successful company.
Firstly, Elegant Themes has excellent product offerings. With over 87 themes and 6 plugins currently available for download through an annual membership package, Elegant Themes users are spoiled for choice when it comes to planning their web builds. The star of the Elegant Themes product portfolio is, without a doubt, Divi – a drag-and-drop modular builder that allows web users with little to no coding knowledge to create websites.
In predicting the future requirements of the growing numbers of WordPress users, Elegant Themes set out to build a theme that would give more and more web users the ability to develop web presences with ease. With this, Divi was designed with sustainability and longevity in mind, and so, undergoes constant renewal and regeneration.
As Elegant Themes keeps re-engineering Divi, they make sure that it always supersedes a previous version of itself. In giving Divi the space to evolve, the theme is able to accommodate and adapt to changes and trends within the greater web design and development industry. In a sense, the same concept of ‘levelling up’ is extended to its users: as the theme itself grows and develops, so do the skills and capabilities of its users. With this, Divi users are able to produce websites that are current, trendy and relevant, quick to craft, and are also at its core really simple to make.
The highly anticipated release of the Divi 3.0 theme update bears testament to this. From the front-end editor to the enhanced portability features of the Divi Library and a range of new extension plugins, Divi 3.0 signals that Elegant Themes is not only evolving Divi as a product but also the nature in which websites are built.
This is evident in the release of a collection of countless Layout Packs for the Divi Library. As released through the Divi 100 Marathon, Elegant Themes has offered beautifully designed pre-styled layouts for testimonial sections, footers, blog posts and even full landing pages and UI Kits – ready for download and import into the Divi Library.
From saving hours of time in development to making use of tried-and-tested layout configurations, Divi 3.0 allows all users to achieve the exact desired aesthetic for a web build. Yes, Elegant Themes are making web development even easier, and in a sense, are engineering Divi to provide users with fool-proof design tactics and development strategies for success.
In a nutshell, as Divi grows and expands to become more and more powerful, in turn, its users are given the same space to evolve in ability, skill and resourcefulness.
Secondly, Elegant Themes has created a platform that uses a completely new form of dialogue for and between its customers: one which both offers support and encourages collaboration.
With a great approach to customer service that extends well beyond merely answering a question or solving a problem, Elegant Themes actively engages their audience and pays acute attention to their users, to a level that far overshadows competitor WordPress theme development companies. Where most brands and companies tend to keep their client bases at an arms length, Elegant Themes runs a support forum, social channels and regularly releases valuable content through their blog (including freebies, interviews, and tutorials), all which aid in helping users solve a range of complex queries. Beyond these somewhat standard protocols of customer service, Elegant Themes actively reaches out to its user base for cues to help them better deliver Divi as a product.
In a recent blog post that formed part of the 100 Days of Divi blog stream, Elegant Themes released a survey which literally asked users: “How can we make Divi better for you?” Here, users were able to share grievances, submit suggestions and pose requests which would ultimately be used to guide the Divi 3.0 update.
Starting a conversation or talking to customers is one thing, but truly engaging your consumer base to elicit valuable insights and act upon those, is another form of brand health and transparency altogether.
Another fascinating aspect of Elegant Themes is its encouragement for synergy between users.
Having noticed the value in collaboration, Elegant Themes both endorses and promotes the use of a number of independent Facebook groups. With members ranging at various levels of skill and experience, both new and seasoned Divi users are encouraged to communicate freely among themselves – asking each other questions, seeking advice, offering solutions and sharing in either grievances or moments of glory.
Whether this is a strategy to decrease on-site support tickets or forum questions, or simply another maverick move on Elegant Theme’s behalf that recognizes the ease of exchange through Facebook as a medium, it’s undeniable that this dialogue between users is really beneficial, and as a result, it further encourages the growth of The Divi Community.
Whether this was by intention or merely a consequence, Elegant Themes have created a new form of communication exchange that might have a ripple effect throughout the industry, where a new breed of web designers and developers no longer work in isolation, but instead, come together to grow alongside each other – all with Divi in mind.
Nevertheless, it’s certainly a great feeling that help and guidance are never far from reach, and that the ‘community culture’ of Divi is one that stands for what comes across as a pretty simple manifesto: learn, evolve and share.
Join the Divi (and Extra) Facebook Groups now!
Thirdly, as possibly the most incredible aspect of Elegant Themes in my honest opinion, is the freedom given to skilled web designers and developers to really make Divi their own.
Having recognized the opportunities that Divi had presented to its users, Elegant Themes welcomed designers and developers from across the globe to anchor themselves to Divi and further explore the theme’s nature along with their own skill sets. From this, we see a growing number of Divi Developers who are producing numbers of high-quality products (child themes and plugins for example) as well as resources (such as tutorials) exclusively for Divi. By allowing these agencies and independents to capitalize on the already-existing credibility of Divi, Elegant Themes has made a space for developers to discover new careers paths and run incredibly successful businesses as entrepreneurs, not just freelancers.
In a way, Elegant Themes didn’t just open doors for these independent developers, they created them. And thankfully so, as each and every Divi user is able to tap into an abundance of resources from child themes to plugins and tutorials.
Have a look at the work of these super talented design and development teams and individuals:
A Girl and Her Mac
Aspen Grove Studios
Creative Child Themes
Divi Theme Examples
Divi Tutorials Directory
Elegant Child Themes
Sunflower Child Themes
The Design Space Co.
Tim Strifler Online Solutions
So, with this, Divi is much more than just a standard WordPress theme. Yes, Divi is a vehicle that allows you make a website, but Divi could also become so much more – a possible career change down the line, for example.
Also, isn’t it nice to know that there exists a loosely affiliated team of code geniuses all around the globe, that spend time working hard and sometimes meeting up to discuss ways and means to make Divi better for you, over and above the value that Elegant Themes provides? I think so.
Finally, I have to ask myself whether the success of Elegant Themes is simply due to the nature and personality of its founder and CEO, Nick Roach.
Nick Roach, Geno Quiroz, Nathan B. Weller, Mitch Skolnik, David Blackmon, Andy Tran
From humble beginnings, Roach discovered his passion for web development while creating a website for his band. With this, he worked day and night, juggling a full-time college design course and theme development, and in merging his design skills and development interest with a life-long entrepreneurial spirit, Elegant Themes was born. In making his themes available for purchase online, Roach noticed the traction his products were gaining in sales and committed himself to further offer new and better themes that would ultimately assist web users with developing on the WordPress platform. It seems almost effortless: a clever idea born from a space of genuine passion and excitement, expanded further to help others that shared a similar collective interest.
There are countless blogs and books and witty quotes that all offer the same advice: take your hobby or passion and turn that into your career. This isn’t always the case for the general populace, especially when there are scores of individuals fighting to fill a gap in the market or forcing one into existence for the sake of entrepreneurship. Once in a while, it’s really nice to realize that an incredibly successful company was built, ground up, with authenticity and integrity, and that it stemmed from a place of genuine interest.
In watching interviews with Roach, his character shines through as one who is unassuming, humble and altruistic – somewhat a contrast to the pictures that come to mind of hungry and hustling corporate CEOs. As displayed regularly through Divi Nation interviews, blog posts and the interactions at Word Camp 2016 Orange Country, it’s clear that Roach employs a very strong hands-on approach to his company by finding ways to foster the growth of Elegant Themes at every avenue: from its products to the users and the global community. Beyond this, Roach appears to be one who truly ‘lives his brand’, as he seems to lead his company in a very human way, where incredibly powerful work is executed and handled in a manner that is laid-back, fun and engaging.
Nick Roach is truly a visionary in predicting changes in the WordPress landscape and its user’s requirements well ahead of time. Whether the success of Elegant Themes is due to a stellar portfolio of products or the genius insight to encourage the growth of Divi companies beyond outsourcing, it’s clear that Roach is actively involved at every step of the way, and the entire international Divi Community will only stand to benefit as Elegant Themes continues to grow from strength to strength.
If you’re starting out as a web developer, Elegant Themes is the family for you.
If you still need a bit more convincing, note that the price of one once-off-purchase theme via ThemeForrest is roughly the price of half of an annual membership to Elegant Themes.
What do you think makes Elegant Themes so successful? What has been your experience with the Divi Facebook groups? Are you a Divi Devotee?
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Thanks for reading!