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
One 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.
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
.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.
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.