I’ll be the first to admit that when Studiopress/Genesis themes first debuted, I was not an early adopter. The whole concept of having to buy two themes for one blog–Genesis and a Child Theme– did not appeal to my wallet. So, I kept blogging along with my free WordPress themes until one of them became irreparably broken. Since it was a free WordPress theme, there was no support.
You may be thinking so what if there are errors as long as the site works. Actually, it wasn’t working at all. While I had been tearing my hair out with SEO and content marketing, the RSS feed was broken and Google was penalizing my site for all the errors it was throwing. Once I tried to submit my blog to the Alltop directory and it was refused because of the broken RSS feed. All my SEO efforts were a waste of time as long as I had the old theme in place.
One kind soul I reached out to, told me run the URL of my blog through the free W3C markup validation service. My site came back with hundreds of errors. The cost to fix it was more than the Genesis child theme I had been lusting after so I finally broke down and purchased my first Studiopress theme–Lifestyle.
Once I switched, my Alexa rank and page rank improved drastically within a month. Since that first Genesis theme, I’ve purchased many others and never looked back.
Many people choose blog themes based on the look of the theme which is fine—never underestimate the power of eye candy; however, the code that runs the theme can make or break your blog’s success. This is where Studiopress themes really shine. Here are a few of the reasons I now use their themes on all my blogs—
I love this feature. Most WordPress themes don’t allow you to have any visible text or banners on your category page without making changes to the code. Genesis themes allow you to do this very easily in its settings. You can add text to your category pages to help you rank for your desired keyword or even an opt-in form for an offer specific to that category.
Studiopress themes have been updated to HTML 5. There are several technical reasons this is important, but for me it means I can put widgets in the header. Sounds simple, but if you’ve been using WordPress for a while you know how difficult it can be to edit a header file and get a graphic banner to show up where you want it to. Something this simple can cost $50 or more for a coder to do. Now I can just paste the code into a widget and drag it where you want it displayed.
Mobile Responsive Themes
Another great feature of Studiopress themes is that they’re mobile friendly. By now everyone knows that WordPress themes need to deliver content to mobile devices. With a Genesis theme you can decrease the size of your browser window and things just move and shift accordingly.
Genesis Themes Plugins
Genesis plugins make it easy to do things like add a newsletter signup box or edit the text in your footer. Currently I’m using Genesis Latest Tweets, Genesis Simple Edits, Genesis Simple Hooks, and Genesis Title Toggle–all available for free.
Updates are free and painless. They usually coincide with updates to WordPress. You’ll get a notice on your dashboard as well as an email. I’ve never had a problem with an update.
With the New Year approaching you may be thinking about re-launching an old blog or starting a brand new one. In either case, using a Studiopress theme will give you a solid foundation. They offer a huge variety of beautiful WordPress themes so it won’t be hard to find something you like. You can shop for Genesis themes by clicking here.