Why I Choose The Genesis Theme Framework

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A while back I wrote about WordPress Theme Frameworks and whether you had taken a look at them yet. Today I’d love to share with you why I have used the Genesis Framework by StudioPress the last couple of months..

In my previous post on the topic I discussed the pros and cons and came to this conclusion:

For me personally, I’m all about options. I love working with a WordPress Theme Framework that allows me to have a very high level of control over how specific I want to be in what I want my theme to output. I don’t mind the learning, in fact I love learning, and when you know your way around the forums you’ll be able to either find what you were looking for or get a working answer of your fellow developers. Plus, having a Parent Theme that is continuously updated is big plus for me.

So even though you could argue a framework is bloat and adds a lot of stuff that you perhaps won’t ever need, to me that’s irrelevant because you only load what is needed and I could care less about how much kB the themes take up on the server.

Why I Choose Genesis

Both Hybrid as Thematic are loaded with hooks and filter and Genesis is no exception to that rule. So, if hooks and filters aren’t the reason why I choose Genesis then what are? Lot’s of other great stuff.

Flexibility of Layout

Sure, both Hybrid and Thematic let you decide what what type of layout you would like by selecting the proper layout style sheet in your style.css, but none make it as easy as Genesis. All you have to do to is select which layout you’d like for the site in the general settings. All other layouts you can select on a per post or page basis. How’s that for flexibility?

Featured Pages and Featured Posts widgets

Genesis Featured Posts Widget OptionsOne of my favorite Genesis features are the Featured Posts and Featured Pages widgets. With these widgets I can pretty much create any list of pages or posts I can think of. You can select which category, number of posts, number of posts to offset, whether you want to show the author Gravatar but also what type of content of these posts and pages you want to show additionally. For example, Post Title, Byline, Content vs. Excerpt are all optional. You get to choose how your content is shown. What more flexibility could you ask for?

Great SEO options

As of version 1.3 Genesis is sporting some extensive SEO options. Most importantly, Genesis lets you implement your SEO settings on a sitewide, post and pages level, but also per category, tag, custom post types and custom taxonomies. For a full featured list of what Genesis SEO can do for you, visit the release post on the StudioPress blog.

Automatic Framework Updates

The proper – as in the only correct – way to use Genesis is by using Child Themes. StudioPress offers automatic updates, just like your WordPress.org theme would do. This means you can easily update Genesis and all your settings will remain intact in your child theme. So when a when a new version of WordPress comes loaded with new features like 3.0 did with custom post types or custom menu’s, the Genesis Framework will be updated with these new options as well and by simply updating Genesis you will have to options available for your site automagically.

Hooks, filter & actions

Like any decent WordPress theme framework, Genesis comes loaded with hooks for you to take advantage of through filters and actions. See the Genesis website for a complete list of hooks.

Genesis Translations

One of the strong features of Genesis is that everything in Genesis is fully translatable. There are currently quite a few translations already out there, such as Dutch, German, French, Spanish, Finnish etc. Genesis will even work with RTL languages such a Arabic and Hebrew. Activating the languages is a simple as uploading the proper .mo and .po files to the proper server and that should be it. Nothing should hold you back to get your hands on that ever expanding Pro Plus All-Theme Package full of child themes..

GenesisConnect: BuddyPress meet Genesis

With BuddyPress growth continueing it’s good to know that Genesis als has this covered. Ron & Andrea Rennick of PremiumBPthemes.com in collaboration with StudioPress offer Genesis Buddy. An easy way to get your Genesis powered website working perfectly with BuddyPress, even adding extra features. Find out more about the GenesisConnect plugin for BuddyPress by StudioPress.

In Conclusion

As far as I am concerned Genesis is the leading WordPress Theme Framework out there. Not only is it a very robust and complete framework, but it’s is continuously being developed into even a better one. The community and support forum of StudioPress is top notch, and really I’m proud to be part of it.

If you’re serious about developing sites with WordPress do consider using the Genesis Framework as your base. Once you have, you’ll never go back. Trust me.

You can purchase the Genesis Framework either as is, or bundle it with one of the available child themes or go for the Pro Plus All-Theme Package.

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7 responses to “Why I Choose The Genesis Theme Framework”

  1. […] Next Saturday will be the 2nd edition of WordCamp NL. Just like last year I’m part of the team of volunteers helping out getting it all organized although my main focus is everything about the site, plus I will be one of the speakers. My talk will be about the use of WordPress Theme Frameworks. […]

  2. […] … Remkus de Vries nog maar ‘s aan zijn mouw moet trekken om te vragen hoe dat nu werkt met die Themes Frameworks. […]

  3. intelboost Avatar

    This is a good post. Nice overview of all the features, but it has left me in complete confusion. I am looking for a WP framework and have zeroed in on Genesis and Thesis. This is the first time I will be using a framework and so both these are new to me. A little confused as to which I was to go with. I was almost sold for the thesis framework, that is, till I read this post. Can you suggest which framework is better for me to create a site like filehippo.com. Want to achieve that tabled feel and should be scalable.

    1. Remkus de Vries Avatar

      Having worked with both, Genesis definitely is the best choice for you. Besides the features it’s a lot more scalable, easier to work with plus the support forum is much better in my opinion. Do check out the Prose child theme option for maximum flexibility.

  4. Niall Avatar

    Thanks! I’ve been looking for frameworks to use and this site looks pretty good and it’s built with Genesis so…

  5. Joyce Grace Avatar

    I think it’s also very notable that they also took into account security in their theme and hired a lead WordPress core developer to do it.

    Also, this company is run by the Copyblogger people, which in itself is a huge branding and backup to their continuos provision of quality products (such as Premise landing page software and now, Authority, and others). They ‘get’ Internet marketing, which means their themes are made with that in mind.

    And my favourite part is that when they say they’ll respond in 24 hours, they really do! So you don’t have to just search the forums, you can even contact support directly and get an answer from someone who works there and knows the framework well when you are encountering glitches. But aside from the forums, there are so many resources online to find a solution for what you want to do. And I LOVE that with basically anything you want to do with Genesis, there will be a Genesis Connect solution for it, like with WooCommerce. It just makes life so much easier.

    My only complaint right now is that their options for responsive-ready themes is very limited. I think they’re too slow rolling out themes that are out-of-the-box ready for responsive designs. Sure you can customize or hack away at the old themes to get them responsive, but it increases the workload considerably and that can affect project budgets. Due to that I’ve thought of trying WooThemes or another framework. Do you have thoughts on this? Is Woo similar to Genesis Framework?

    But other than that, I love Genesis! Until now I have been a Genesis-only provider of WordPress sites.

    By the way I LOVE Holland 🙂 I have a mug that says “he doe effe normal yoh?” from Xenos and my apartment is filled with Dutch things 🙂 I think I should be on that show, “Ik hou van Holland.” I was attracted by your post.nl site and landed here due to that 🙂 I was SUPER amazed to see a Genesis-only agency operating in Holland!

    1. Remkus de Vries Avatar

      Thanks for the reply Joyce. Ik hou ook van Holland, though I do not live in that part of the Netherlands 😉 Woo, particular Canvas, is quite a different beast, but a framework of some sorts nonetheless. Personally I prefer the abstracted way Genesis is built, but to each its own, right? 😉

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