See How to Setup and Design a Website With a Genesis WordPress Theme
If you go with WordPress, you can choose from thousands of themes and switching up your design (changing themes) takes seconds.
In the video below, you can watch me take the basic Genesis Lifestyle WordPress theme and customize it to my liking.
Here are some of the topics covered...
- Customizing the header (includes a brief Photoshop tutorial)
- Adding/Editing header menus
- Floating social media icons (or any elements) in the header
- Modifying the navigation
- Creating a 3-column footer
- How to use the Simple Hooks plugin to edit virtually any part of the site.
The Genesis Lifestyle theme also comes with a free guide to help you learn how to use the theme.
Update: This theme has been upgraded to 3.0 and is slightly different from the video below. It still has the same great features, it's just responsive -- which means it automatically adjusts to fit smaller screens (mobile devices, etc.) Having a responsive design is a MUST today.
Free vs. Premium Themes
You may already know that WordPress comes with a bunch of free themes. All you do is go to Appearance >> Themes from the WordPress dashboard, and you can select from thousands of designs.
When I first started using WordPress for my site, I opted for one of the free themes. Then WordPress updated its software and the theme broke.
My entire site's design was jumbled and it looked a mess. I thought there was something wrong with WordPress, but it turns out my free theme was no longer supported or updated by the creator.
So when WordPress performed one of its routine software updates (which happens multiple times per year), my theme was no longer compatible.
This is a risk you take when you choose a free theme for your website. Lots of times the developers do not continue to update them so they remain compatible with the current WordPress release, and since they are free, they aren't motivated to provide support.
So as WordPress continues to evolve and get updated, the code for the theme no longer works and causes the design to "break."
So that is why I don't recommend using the free themes. They may work for some time, but if you happen to select a theme that is no longer supported by the developer, you could be one WordPress update away from a theme that no longer displays properly.
And unless you are a coder/developer, this could be nearly impossible to fix. That's why I highly recommend going with a premium/paid theme so you receive the support you need.
For example, as soon as WordPress gets updated the StudioPress team immediately releases an update if needed to ensure their themes don't break and can make use of any new feature provided by WordPress.
So if you're looking for a premium theme, I'd highly recommend Genesis Themes by Studiopress. You won't be disappointed.
The other cool aspect of owning a CopyBlogger product is they always offer nice discounts to their customers on future products. So they do a great job of creating brand loyalty. I'm always happy to support them.
Don't take shortcuts with your site's design. As I always say, "Free often comes with a price." Invest in your site to ensure you have proper support.
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