My Move to the Genesis WordPress Theme

Genesis Premium WordPress Theme

Earlier today, I switched themes to the Genesis Premium WordPress theme (affiliate link). It is a very strong WordPress theme, with lots of SEO capability built in to improve search. It’s fairly straightforward behind the scenes. I haven’t run into anything that scares me.

It’s not as designer-tweak-filled as Thesis, but as I’m not a designer, and as I never touched those parts myself very much, I’m okay with that. I paid Nico to design my blog, so I wouldn’t break anything.

The team behind it, StudioPress has lots of other custom themes as well, but I’m going to stick with Genesis for a while, and here’s why: It’s a theme “framework,” which means that it’s going to allow for “child” themes or “skins,” so that I can stay on Genesis but add a video-intensive theme, if I want.

So, I’m pretty excited to try out a new theme and see what makes sense.

If you’re using Thesis, I still think it’s a good theme, and for those of you wondering, Chris Pearson and team at DIYThemes are GPL-compliant again, so that’s a non-issue.

For me? I’m just trying out a new theme framework, and so far, I’m pretty happy with it.

Want to check it out? Visit Genesis today. runs on the Genesis Framework

Genesis Theme Framework

The Genesis Framework empowers you to quickly and easily build incredible websites with WordPress. Whether you're a novice or advanced developer, Genesis provides you with the secure and search-engine-optimized foundation that takes WordPress to places you never thought it could go.

With automatic theme updates and world-class support included, Genesis is the smart choice for your WordPress website or blog.

Become a StudioPress Affiliate

  • Alex @ SQL Training

    Genesis seems to be a good theme framework and does seems to have a lot of good SEO capabilities. There are so many framework and it is hard to choose the best but Thesis and Genesis are my pick of the lot

  • Eco-Office Gals

    I have been working with both Studio and Thesis a lot lately and both have their strengths. I think people still tend to be visually drawn to studiopress since it has several built in visual bells and whistles. But thesis is very strong on options. It's a toss for me.

  • Nathan Hangen

    I think that's a good point…there really are different themes for different needs. I run a little bit of everything, and even though I prefer certain brands, the reality is that I have yet to find a one size fits all solution.

  • Sarah Arrow

    I use Studiopress themes on several blogs and they are very pleasing visually and I am thrilled with them. Sadly it is not the Genesis theme, which to be honest, I found to be very painful.

    I am not a designer, just a ardent WP fan who wants a good looking easily customisable theme with out having to call in a designer every 5 minutes when I want to change something. I will soon be moving some other themes over to Thesis as I have found with my limited skills it's much easier to manipulate than Genesis, and easier to get the look that I want.

    The new look site is good :) and if it suits your video intensive needs, then it's the right choice for you, and people need to remember all of our needs are different, that it's a needs and use issue and nothing else.

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  • Christine Green

    Chris – I felt uneasy after reading your post. I sensed there was more to the story than what you shared. Thanks for this fuller explanation. I understand and it increases my trust of the Trust Agent! :-)

  • KatFrench

    Gladiola is, to me, the theme equivalent of a little black dress. Elegant in its simplicity. I still love the typography of it. And I'm still running a variation on Downtown Java on, although I no longer update that blog.

  • Chris Brogan

    I'm with you. There are both types of values and I'm excited that the world contains both. : )

  • Chris Brogan

    Wait. Where's the URL? We want to see it. : )

  • Chris Brogan

    I chose Genesis because Brian Clark introduced me to Brian Gardner. If you mean Headway, I haven't yet put together a project in Headway, but I most certainly will in the nearer future, if only to see what I've been missing.

  • Chris Brogan

    That's an affirmative. At some point in the near future.

  • Eco-Office Gals

    I'm actually not loving my own redesign I did on iflexx and have been tossing around between thesis and studio myself. It's funny that you brought this up.

  • Danny Brown

    Cool – look forward to seeing what you think of it. :)

  • Danny Brown

    No, not Headway specifically – just why Genesis. But yeah, Brian Gardner has been doing some great stuff for years on themes.

    Hmm… so was this an “exclusive leak” that Brian Clark will soon be running Copyblogger on Genesis? ;-)

  • Danny Brown

    That'll be this one:

  • Genuine Chris Johnson

    Paypal and other buttons. Makes me nuts, too.

  • Ozzybeef

    I am curious if changing themes will affect traffic from search engines.

  • juliewalraven

    Me too, Danny, I have never regretted Headway and my first look at it was through you and Jim Connolly. I am curious to see if Chris likes it too. I will admit that I am pulled by any project that has a young person doing great things. I have seen my share of kids gone wrong and I am very impressed with the work Clay Griffiths has done and proud of the way Grant supports him.

  • Kim Woodbridge

    I've worked with Headway, Genesis, and Thesis for different clients but don't run any of them on my own sites. Well, I am using an older StudioPress theme, Streamline, on one site but it isn't the Genesis child theme. From a development perspective – not a business or affiliate one – I prefer Genesis. I rarely run into any issues and with customizations can create something completely unique. I also am in love with their single price, forever updates on all themes. If a client, however, wants to use Headway or Thesis I don't try to talk her out of it – they all have their strengths.

    The site looks great.

  • C Briansullivan

    hi Chris,

    love the blog and i am a faithful reader. my first impression of this switch is the same i had when chris garrett made the switch to headway from thesis:

    the market is drying up for affiliate commission for thesis – time to make the switch to a new theme that is probably just as good, but will replenish the revenue stream.

    correct me! :)

  • Chris Brogan

    In my case, that wasn't really the reason. I'm still making pretty good money on Thesis.

    In my case, there was a business decision. I had only one premium wordpress theme in my quiver. I will have 4 by the end of the month. That's so that I can have a diverse solution set for my own projects, as well as to recommend to others.

  • Chris Brogan

    I'm not a designer, so I find I like the SEO and other gears and buttons. Design-wise, however, those who make such things sing say they love how Genesis does what it does.

  • retro jordans

    .With automatic theme updates and world-class support included, Genesis is the smart choice for your WordPress website

  • John Carman

    I'm surprised to see so many designers using premium themes. Is this becoming standard? I have always designed custom themes for my clients.

  • Corey Freeman

    Let me know if you need any assistance at all with the headway theme. ;) It's kind of what I do.

  • Sophiachen37

    Just take a look, I like this site

  • Rob Cottingham

    That’s better than my answer for wanting to install Genesis: I just want to play with it. I’m a born tinkerer, and blogs are the new jalopies.

  • Ari Herzog

    Interesting, Kim. So from your perspective, you advise folks who grasp the PHP end of things to switch from Thesis to Genesis?

    What about the Frugal theme? Have you played with that too?

  • Adam

    You’re just trying out a new framework…right…

    It has nothing to do with the fact that CopyBlogger Media LLC just acquired Genesis???

    Mmmk…if you say so.

    I have no problem with supporting business partners. We all make decisions on that basis. That said, I’m a big fan of transparency, and this ain’t it :(

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  • Doug Francis

    Yes, I know that this is an old post but it giving me some insight into upgrading to a new theme. I too run an older version StudioPress theme and feel it is important to upgrade – obviously because I am sold on the importance of the backbone – Genesis.

    I’m in the process of determining what I need to do to upgrade without messing everything up. Hopefully I’ll locate a video tutorial…

  • Bloughmee

    I’ve found Chris Pearson to be a big-mouthed,  self-interested jackass… unwilling to acknowledge there might be some issues with his products/services and famous for just blowing off constructive critiques and verbally pummeling his customers.    I”m guessing that fact has pushed quite a few customers into a different direction with their WP themes.   

    That said – I don’t find very much that Chris Brogan says about this switch to be credible either.  First he was over-the-top into “Thesis” – now Thesis is out and “Genesis” is in… oh but  Copyblogger Media LLC acquired it – what a surprise.   And if I read “I only had 1 now I have 4  for business reasons” one more time I’m going to hurl.    Why don’t you just tell the truth – you bought Genesis and so now you’re going to use that?   Straight up – no shame in that. 

    This is why I avoid endorsing or recommending  any particular product or service.   The tiny amount of money to be made isn’t worth the BS required to keep your turds covered in the litterbox of the blogosphere. 

    The two frameworks are largely Ford vs. Chevy.  If you want to use a theme that you bought – that’s totally understandable- it doesn’t require a Mitt Romney-style flip-flop.  

  • Rohit

    Today I also move to genesis theme….

  • Rohit Agarwal

    I also Select Genesis theme for my new blog.

  • Michael Knepprath

    I’m so impressed every time I come back to your website… Bravo. My compliments to Nico.

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