Thesis Theme vs Genesis/StudioPress: Which Is Better?

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With so many blogs out there for readers to choose from, your blog design matters more and more year after year. Many experts say the way your site looks doesn’t matter… but let’s face it, if your theme doesn’t match the modern day standards, that reader hits the back button don’t they?  Whether you are an amateur or a seasoned blogger, you must be aware of the importance of the role of aesthetics in your blog’s success. A well-designed blog increases your viewership and consequently, your conversion rate. And two of the top ranked WordPress themes on the planet (Genesis & Thesis) have been helping bloggers achieve this for several years now.

If your blog looks awesome, your content automatically shines, since readers want the image on their screen to be eye-appealing. Having said that, using WordPress always raises the question of using the best theme for your blog.

Ahead, we’ll do a detailed comparison between Thesis and Genesis, two of the top premium themes on WordPress and used by millions of site owners.

Genesis

Genesis is a premium WordPress theme offered by StudioPress. It comes in 2 packages, Genesis Framework and Genesis Pro Plus Package, priced at $59.95 and $499.95 respectively.

The Genesis Framework enables the features and the functionality of your WordPress blog and the child themes offer complete customization of the visual elements that form the frontend of your site. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of using Genesis as your WordPress theme.

Pros

Genesis is among the top-ranked and most used WordPress themes. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why.

Unlimited Usage

Whether you buy the basic Framework or the Pro Plus package, you can use the theme on an unlimited number of websites through one single purchase, a feature not a lot of themes offer. So, if you are a blogger that works with several sites simultaneously, choosing their Pro Plus package that gives you unrestricted usage along with the use of StudioPress’ child themes might be the most reasonable way to go.

User-friendly Code

The parent theme, as well as the child themes, have been extremely well coded, with little to no requirement of changing the underlying code. The users of Genesis have rarely seen any errors in running the theme, which makes it highly efficient and user friendly. Technically, the framework is easy to use for developers.

SEO Friendly

Genesis Framework has been completely optimized for search engines. It is a huge benefit since you won’t have to mess your head with customizing the theme for SEO. Though, it offers a host of features if you do want to modify the code. You can customize the meta tags, the heading styles, the title tags and everything else, to just the way you want.

Child Themes

Genesis’ child themes have been brilliantly designed to give you the best final look. There are themes for every domain, and you can customize them according to your requirements.

Exclusive Plugins

Plugins are important for seamless functioning of the theme and ultimately your website. Genesis has many plugins specifically created for its framework, like Genesis Connect, Genesis Footer Builder and more.

Cons

Even though there are numerous reasons for bloggers to go for Genesis as their ultimate theme, there are a few aspects which make it a dicey option.

Limited Default Customization

If you are not using the child themes and several plugins along with the Genesis Framework, then you might face the problem of limited customization options on the default dashboard. You can’t change elements like color skin, fonts, style, etc., without installing separate plugins. This makes it a cumbersome process for some.

Difficult for Non-Coders

For users familiar with CSS and PHP, Genesis works very smoothly. However, non-coders might feel lost while using the theme when it comes to making changes for customization of individual elements.

Not Brimming with Features

Unlike a lot of other premium themes, Genesis does not have a lot of features to play with. This is a boon as well, in a way, since it loads faster. However, it keeps the design simple unless you add several child themes and plugins to it.

Thesis

A DIYthemes.com product, Thesis is another premium WordPress theme. A close competitor of Genesis, Thesis was developed by Chris Pearson. It’s a highly customizable theme and can work for all types of websites you want to create.

Thesis comes in three variants – Basic, Basic Plus and Developer; they are priced at $87, $164 and $197 respectively. Let’s break down the pros and cons of using Thesis as your blog theme.

Pros

What makes Thesis one of the most popular themes among WordPress site users? Let’s take a look.

Robust SEO

Thesis comes with an outstanding inbuilt SEO capability. Of course, you can customize everything you want, including your homepage title, meta tags, drilling down to the post level. It gives you the flexibility to opt out in case you don’t want certain pages of your blog to be indexed by search engines. Its exhaustive features eliminate the need for an external plugin, making your site lighter and hence, faster to load.

Design Features

There are umpteen ways and features through which Thesis lets you play with the design of your site, without the use of a child theme or external plugin. You can modify every font type, style and size on your site directly through the dashboard that has the drag and drop feature under the design options. You also have maximum control over the ultimate layout of your website.

Extensive Support

Apart from the WordPress forums, DIYthemes has its own support forum where you can find all the help you need in case of any problem you face with Thesis.

Cons

While there are some areas where Thesis clearly takes the first prize, it does fall short in certain areas when compared to Genesis.

Limited Usage

While Genesis offers the use of the theme in an unlimited number of websites upon a single purchase, the personal package of Thesis only allows the use of theme on a single website. For the unlimited option, you need to purchase the developer option.

Pricing

The price is at a relatively higher end with the starting package priced at $87 as compared to Genesis’ $59.95. However, both options include lifetime access to the support forums and free upgrades.

Hard to Navigate

For people with no knowledge of coding, Thesis might feel puzzling and tedious to use. Even making the design changes is a pain if you are not familiar with CSS at all.

Final Thought

Both the themes have some grey areas and some distinct areas where they shine.

However, when we look at the key factors such as better worth for money and ease of use for beginners as well as experienced bloggers, Genesis takes a slender lead, especially with the support of its child themes and exclusive plugins, along with its SEO features. Thesis does outperform when it comes to inbuilt features, but the same aspect makes it a little tough to navigate.

If you are a blogger with multiple websites and want to keep away from coding, you should definitely go for Genesis. If you don’t mind getting your hands dirty and are looking for a platform richer in inbuilt features, Thesis is the way to go.

Regardless of your choice though, rest assured that you’ll be using one of the two ultimate themes in the industry, both with an integral support system to help you if you get stuck!

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