Themes we recommend (and use)
After using WordPress since 2006 in one capacity or another we have become pretty good at curating themes and plugins. When it comes to themes, we have settled on two “frameworks” for our own use and recommend them to all our dealer and reseller clients. The themes that we user are: #1 BeaverBuilder #2 Studiopress.com and their Genesis framework, and #3 WordPress’ themes; Twenty Eleven, Twenty Twelve, and Twenty Thirteen (not yet released as of this post, but close). The reason that we use these is simple, they work and have all the functionality that we need. So now the next question;
Which Theme is best for you?
Based on these choices it will depend on your level of WordPress/CSS experience and desire for a customized design.
Studiopress and Genesis (Commercial Theme)
BeaverBuilder has a few parts; a front end drag and drop editor which is a plugin, a basic theme, and a child theme. All work together great and can produce excellent results. We have recently switched to using BeaverBuilder in all of our website projects. Here are a few blog posts too.
Genesis is the framework that all Studiopress themes are based and an excellent out of the box solution if you like the look and feel of any of the Genesis/Studiopress child themes. It is also a great framework if you would like to get your hands dirty and build your own child theme.
Dynamik Theme for Genesis (Commercial Theme)
The Dynamik Theme for Genesis is both a child theme for Genesis and a theme builder. This means that you can create just about anything you want without having to know coding at all. Don’t get me wrong, knowing some basic CSS can definitely help, but you can learn little bits as you go and be just fine. I have had a lot of fun using this theme and can copy the design of most sites without knowing much CSS at all.
The reason we include the WordPress themes is because, well, there made by WordPress and once again they just work. I haven’t used Twenty Thirteen yet (as of posting this it is in beta), but Twenty Twelve and Twenty Eleven work very well right out of the box as minimalist themes. If you want a more customized design you will need to build a child theme for one of these. By the way, the reason that I am not including Twenty Ten is because it isn’t responsive and a non-responsive site doesn’t make sense to me.
We have been experimenting with various hosting for years. For the most part we have managed our own hosting environment for sites that we have built and maintain. Recently we started using WPEngine for some of our production sites and are very pleased with the results. As you probably have noticed by the content on this site and the fact that we have a WordPress inventory plugin in the first place, our goal is to put you in the driver seat. To that end we believe in “eating our own dog food” wherever we can and hosting is no exception. By using WPEngine we believe that we have found at least one hosting company that can provide you with all of the hosting tools that you could possibly need to manage your own website; security, backups, speed, and support are all top notch.
We also recommend and integrate with Gravity Forms
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