Recent Changes to the Genesis Framework for WordPress

New Packages from WPEngine Make the Genesis Framework Better Than Ever

The Genesis Framework is one of the most popular WordPress frameworks available. Recently, WPEngine repackaged the Genesis framework and StudioPress themes. These changes make the Genesis framework a far better choice for your new WordPress website. This post will explore these changes in detail, as well as what they mean for you as a website owner.

WPEngine Acquired StudioPress

Let’s start at the beginning of these changes. In 2010, Brian Gardner created the Genesis Framework and StudioPress. Check out Brian’s story here. For years, StudioPress sold individual themes and the Genesis Framework. I discovered Genesis in 2012 and immediately fell in love with the simplicity of StudioPress themes. They were also my inspiration in learning code and learning WordPress customization.

Enter WP Engine. If you aren’t familiar with WPEngine, they are a premium WordPress hosting platform and the inventors of WordPress Managed Hosting. They stay on the cutting edge of what is happening with the future of WordPress. In June of 2018, WPEngine acquired StudioPress from its founders. Good things were soon to be on the way.

1. The Genesis Framework and Genesis Sample Theme are Now Available for Free

The Genesis Framework and the Genesis Sample Theme are now free (in exchange for your name and email address). This will allow you to try the Genesis Framework (if you haven’t already) and see how it can power your website. StudioPress customers will always have support for the Genesis framework and the Sample Theme.

2. StudioPress no longer sells individual themes for Genesis

Remember posts like these that I wrote in the past recommending different themes? Forget about them. When WordPress released Gutenberg blocks, the world changed. Some people love the blocks and some hate them but they are the future of WordPress. Taking blocks a step further is full-site editing which will be coming out in future versions of WordPress. With the future of themes and plugins uncertain, StudioPress is preparing for the next generation of WordPress.

3. All Older StudioPress Themes are Now Archived (Except for Ten)

In keeping with WordPress’s goal of full-site editing, all older StudioPress themes are archived with the exception of their ten best-selling themes.

What about your site that is running on an archived theme? Don’t worry, support for these themes isn’t ending. The themes just aren’t available anymore for purchase. If you have a StudioPress account, you will still have access to support for Genesis themes.

4. StudioPress Themes Are Now Available with a WPEngine Hosting Plan or Genesis Pro Subscription

The Genesis Pro subscription gives you all ten of the current StudioPress themes. This also gives you access to Genesis Blocks Pro and Genesis Custom Blocks Pro. Now, if you can’t find the right block for your site, you can create it with Genesis Custom Blocks. It’s probably a lot easier than learning how to write in the command line and building it yourself.

To get the full power of WordPress, try a WPEngine hosting plan. WordPress sites are a little different and all hosting plans are not the same. Besides managing the HTML and CSS, your server also has to manage the PHP and database calls. If you have a lot of plugins or content, all these database calls could slow down or crash your server.

Because of this, WPEngine invented WordPress Managed Hosting. WPEngine is the best hosting available for your WordPress website. Check out what WPEngine offers here.

The Reasons Behind These Changes

When you read about these changes, you probably thought that WPEngine was just cannibalizing StudioPress. At least, that’s what I thought. The reasons for this go far deeper and stem from changes that WordPress development is going in. In fact, I am writing another blog post just to get caught up (to be published soon).

The future of WordPress lies in further block development and full-site editing. This means that potentially widget areas and themes and plugins themselves are possibly going to be obsolete very soon. To learn more about StudioPress’s take on the future of WordPress, read this article.

Tech isn’t sleeping but continuously evolving to the needs of creators. Staying on top of web development as tech evolves will continue to be a full-time job for all developers and website owners.

Michael Neely

My name is Michael Neely. I started in graphic design and SEO in 2001 and coded my first site in 2011. Since then my career has been a constant learning experience launching my freelance business n 2014. I have worked in WordPress, Shopify, Laravel, HubSpot CMS and more. I have also kept up with SEO through the years and adapted to the mainstream use of Artificial Intelligence as the "next thing" in tech. Keep in touch and visit often to stay tuned in on what is happening in the world of technology.