StudioPress has released a framework called Genesis which can be used to power your WordPress blogs. There are many different themes out there but what makes Genesis different from all the others? Well with my Genesis Framework review I hope to show you guys what you should be looking for in a theme and why you should consider using this for your website needs.
This isn’t just a theme. This is a complete design that optimizes your sites performance and then you can place many different themes over the top of it.
Let’s look at what Genesis is all about.
The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
Now let’s look at what’s good and what I think they could improve on:
- A framework that keeps your site highly SEO optimized
- No excess coding so your site loads fast
- Over 40 themes to lay over the top of the framework, more added regularly
- Many themes are HTML5 ready and responsive to the size of the visitors screen
- Unlimited support, unlimited updates and unlimited websites for one price
- Codes update instantly in the background. No need to “update” the themes and framework manually
- Very easy to customize
- Multiple widget and layout options for all themes
- Need to know a bit of code to make any big changes
Too many themes to choose from!Not really a con, but you can spend so much time trying to pick one!
Genesis Framework and Genesis Themes Overview
To wrap your head around how Genesis works I have an analogy that I’ve stolen from their website because I think it is perfect to explain how it all works and fits in together.
Think of WordPress as the engine of a car. It is what drives your website and makes everything fall into place.
Think of the Genesis Framework as the body of the car. It keeps everything together, makes sure everything sits in it’s right places and makes sure that your website is highly optimized by not having code in there that’s not needed.
Now think of the themes, or child themes in this case, as the paintwork for your car. The theme is the part that makes your site look good and it’s the part that’s visible to your visitors.
WordPress + Genesis Framework + Genesis Child Theme = One Awesome Site The Oozes Awesomeness!
With the child themes, you can place a new one over the top if you decided you wanted to change the look of your website and the ONLY thing that changes is the look of your website. This also means you can edit your website as much as you wanted without worrying about whether you are messing up it’s optimization because you’re only touching the child theme. All the important code is handled by the Genesis Core, it’s just the child theme that’s changing so you’ll never hurt your sites rankings if you go changing the look of your site every other week!
Plus with 40+ themes, you can change the look of your website as much as you want. They even have Genesis developers which they recommend if you wanted to get a custom theme made. It will still be powered by the awesome Genesis Framework but the theme will look however you want.
Is Genesis For Me? I’m Happy With My Free Themes
Keeping your website in tip top shape is very important. With the search engines always swapping and changing their algorithms every other day, it seems like that sometimes, the last think you want to do is have to worry about whether your website is performing well.
Genesis has you covered.
They update all code changes in the background so you don’t have to worry about it anymore. All themes have been fully optimized by Greg Boser, search engine optimization pioneer and industry expert. So your site will be performing like a champion in that department!
The bonus of having a premium theme like Genesis compared to using a free theme is the quality is going to be a lot higher and if any issues occur, you have a support channel you can go through to get help. With Genesis being popular with developers, there are lots of people around that can help with and changes and modifications you may wish to make to your child theme.
The members area is packed with additional resources and if you’re stuck on how to get started with Genesis, you get a beginners guide PDF and each theme comes with it’s own installation guide as well. You can’t get stuck and if you do, you can contact the support or use the community forums where developers hang out and get your questions answered there.
Installing Genesis is like any other theme.
Upload Genesis –> Upload your Genesis Child Theme –> Genesis will see the child theme and upload the settings for that to your site
So if you decide to get just the Genesis Framework, well, that’s all you get. You still get a pretty awesome looking responsive site. It’s very clean and basic.
If you decide to get a child theme as well, you get the Genesis Framework and the child theme of your choosing. You can easily edit the look and feel of your site without worrying about messing up the core elements that run Genesis.
If you wanted the “Pro Plus All-Theme Package” you get the Genesis Framework and all the themes they offer and ALL FUTURE themes they release. It’s a mega sweet deal, but to be perfectly honest, you don’t really need to do buy this. If you only have one website then just get the framework and a theme.
If you can afford it however AND you have multiple websites which you’d like looking differently, then definitely get the Pro Plus package… But for 90% of you, I would just get the framework and a child theme.
One Thing I Really Love
Recently I managed to completely destroy That Marketing Dude by changing some code within the child theme (This website currently used the eleven40 theme). I changed some code around to move the comments box above the comments so you don’t have to scroll to the bottom of the page to leave comments on the posts.
Somehow I forgot one closing bracket and it sent my site offline, I couldn’t even log into the back end of the website. Thankfully because I know it was just the child theme that I was editing, all I had to do was upload the file I was editing again. My site was instantly back up and running.
The fact that ALL themes are set as child themes, if you manage to wreck your website you can easily get it back up and running again.
This saved my bacon! Before on old themes I had to hope I had a recent backup that had all of my content and then upload that. Not with Genesis…
Getting Down To the Dollars and Cents
Genesis Framework Only: $59.95
Genesis Framework + One Child Theme: $99.95 <– *My Recommendation*
Pro Plus Package (Genesis Framework + ALL Child Themes + ALL Future Child Themes): $399.95
So as you can see the Pro Plus package is pretty expensive. So I recommend the framework and theme as that’s all you really need especially if you’re just getting started.
You can always upgrade to the Pro Plus package later if you wanted and you get it for a discounted price ($399.95 – whatever you spent already). If there is one particular child theme you wanted to purchase you also get it at a discounted price. Double bonus
The Final Verdict
Dude’s Final Opinion: Extremely Happy! I highly recommend Genesis to anyone wanting a professional and sleek website
The Genesis Framework and their child themes have just been a pleasure to work with. They’re so simple to install onto your website and they really do give you a professional and awesome looking website.
I’ve had so many people say they love the look of my website that I know I made the right investment. I too purchased the Genesis Framework + One Child Theme when I first started and didn’t feel the need to purchase anything else for a long time. The really difficult part is definitely picking a theme. They’re all pretty awesome and if you look at their showcase section, people have managed to make each one completely unique!
One you get into the members area you’ll have lots of tutorials you can access for additional help and training. You have code snippets that you can add to your child theme for extra little features for your site and you can also get your had on some awesome little plugins too, some which help make the code changing a lot easier.
You’ll be happy with your decision to go with Genesis for your WordPress site design. You have the excellent engine for your website, not go get the bodywork and paintjob to go with it!
I hope all you dudes and dudettes found this review helpful. Are you a Genesis user? I want to know your thoughts on the Genesis Framework since you purchased it. Leave your thoughts below and click those nice coloured buttons.