Trial for themes

In the past, I’ve been deceived a few times with premium themes. They were not well built or not well maintained as Ghost is evolving.

What if a Ghost user could try a Ghost theme for 14 days? The issue we have at the moment is that it’s almost impossible to ensure a theme is well designed without trying it.

Having the ability to try a theme, would put pressure on theme producers to ship a high-quality product.

Furthermore, with the ‘Apps’ section, the concept of trying App could make sense as well. This would incentivize a marketplace for apps built for Ghost.

I am really interested in this idea. My use case is: I want to make a blog for a friend, show them how it looks, see if they like it, and if they don’t, try a different theme. As themes are currently set up, that would be a very expensive process, and it’s holding me back from using Ghost much at all.

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Hey @pascalandy, just a heads up, we are chatting about your idea at the moment on Slack Unofficial Ghost Chat on Slack

I agree that this is a real issue. As is support. I paid for two themes early on where I had to actually ask for documentation and then my queries weren’t answered promptly, or at all in one case. One reason I then went with Krabi was that there was a 14 day trial period.

I comment on the theme experience here (overly long :-)) making the point that it would be good to know more about the theme before committing … …

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Ideally it would be great if there was a way that we could download and play around with themes on local development installations but then pay for them when we use them on a live production website. I’m not sure how exactly that could be done from a technical perspective. Perhaps Ghost could check for a licence key (entered in the admin dashboard) when the theme is activated on a live website?

I do personally think the current theme system is holding Ghost back (but I still love Ghost). It’s just hard to convince people to switch over to Ghost when Wordpress is so popular and has so many inexpensive themes available.

The problem with delivering themes, even for testing purposes, is that there is already a lot of code theft / spoofing. If they are delivered I am sure that 90% would not pay for them. It is already possible to browse the code from the browser but if we also give access to the source code of the theme … they will not pay for it.

If a topic does not meet expectations it should not be for sale and if a topic stops offering support it should not be for sale.

So I see more of a quality criteria issue than a theme developer issue. If they do not offer quality, they are withdrawn, but if they do, let’s not give away their work …

It is just an opinion as a theme developer with 100% of my satisfied customers…

Aspire Themes gives a 14 day trial period. If not happy can get a refund. This certainly influenced my choice to go with Krabi.

I know that there are various issues with ratings systems, especially when they are unilateral. However, I was interested that the Ghost list had no such apparatus. I actually think it would be useful to have a ratings system for support, which can be quite important. Without some indication otherwise, it looks as if all the themes listed by Ghost are endorsed from design, performance, support, etc, points of view.

(I do acknowledge that as a non-initiate user, I probably asked too much of the theme developer and Ghost support initially, as I did not always know enough to know where my issues were.)

We (including some theme developers) have been discussing this on Slack and I agree that allowing people to download the themes without paying for them would likely result in a large number of thefts, which is obviously very unfair to the developers of these themes who put in so much work and deserve to make a good living from it (which I am hoping they do).

I was just wondering if it might be possible for Ghost devs to implement something into the admin side of the theme system that allowed people to trial/test/play around with themes on a non-published/non-live website without downloading the themes. Obviously payment for the theme would be required prior to making the site published or downloading the theme files.

My use case might be unusual, but I just love playing around with different themes and seeing what works best for a particular site or blog I’m building or thinking about building.

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