Theme Framework & Child Themes 101

We are designing almost exclusively on Genesis theme Framework with custom Child Themes these days.  Genesis is similar to other theme frameworks out there for WordPress.  The reason we use a framework and a child theme is that you can upgrade your code (the framework) without loosing your custom styles (the child theme).  This gives your new style a longevity unheard of until now.

The reason we use Genesis in particular, is:

  1. We know and trust the parent company (StudioPress) that it will be around for along time providing the upgrades we know and look forward to.
  2. Their framework is high quality, secure, extensible, clean, well supported, and cost effective.
  3. The upgrades are included in the initial purchase for as long as you use the theme.
  4. The plugins and widgets that are included are world-class.
  5. It is Search Engine optimized and provides the structure for SEO friendly child themes.
  6. It is compatible with every plugin that I’ve tried so far (hundreds)
  7. Frameworks, and Genesis in particular is the newest and best way to get custom styles for WordPress.

Genesis comes with:

  • Theme Settings page
  • SEO Settings page
  • Custom widgets (you can see them in the widgets panel)

Below is an explanation and some tips on using each of these features. As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact support and we will help you set it up.

Theme Settings Page

The only panels on this page you should play with are the Primary Navigation, Comments, Single Post, Breadcrumbs, Post Content, Blog Page (does not apply to home page).

Primary Nav: Your site has one navigation bar programmed into it – it appears under the under. In this panel you can select which pages and/or categories are displayed. On the right hand side of the nav bar you can also choose to display a search bar, twitter link, rss feeds, or date.

Comments: These settings can be over-ridden on a page by page basis in each post-edit screen.

Single Post: This is where you can de/activate the Author Box.

Breadcrumbs: Select which pages and templates should display the breadcrumbs

Post Content: Select whether the blog pages, archive pages, search results, and any other post-listing page display excerpts, full content, images, and paged navigation styles.

Blog Page: Select which category to display on the ‘blog’ home page. This only applies if you have a custom front page.

SEO Settings Page

Feel free to edit the following panels to your liking:

You can add and edit meta description and keywords, search engine indexing, and no-follow.
If we installed the theme, I’d recommend leaving Canonical Tag settings, and Doctitle settings as they’re currently set.

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