“What we’ve got here is a failure…” — no, wait a minute. What we’ve got here is a success, actually. Thesis 2.0 is an innovative WordPress theme designing system that comes packed with effective SEO options — a good combination.
Would You Want and Need Thesis 2.0?
Yes and no. If you’re looking for a framework that you can use to tweak nearly every part of your web design that loads fast and does its best at SEO (which is one of its inbuilt functions by the way) then read on. If the previous sentence meant little to you or if you don’t want to mess with some of the more complex stuff — that goes even for Thesis 2.0 which is made as simple as possible for the average joe with no coding experience — then you can still read on at least out of interest, or not.
Boxes + Skins + Packages + SEO
Let’s have a look at these three comprehensive features of the framework that power Thesis 2.0.
The Good Jack in the Box
The Thesis “Boxes” are like WordPress plugins that add new functionalities to your design. The difference is that boxes use a more advanced coding structure than typical plugins, so they won’t slow down your loading time. You can place the boxes where you want.
Thesis 2.0 comes with preset skins that you can make use of in the admin area. The Thesis 2.0 Visual Design Template Editor lets you customise how the skin looks and “feels”.
These are CSS styles that are tightly linked with boxes as you have to add them for the latter. They function as agents that change the way boxes, skins and templates look. That brings me to the fourth feature of the previous sentence.
Create and Deploy Templates
The Visual Design Template Editor lends a hand when you want to create your own template and place it anywhere. This way you can make your pages look different.
With the effective SEO options built in Thesis 2.0 you can optimise your site for better rankings in search engines. Thesis 2.0 supports the new markup format — schema — that is used by the big league search engines like Google and Bing. The markup schema is used to make better sense of the content on the web. By supporting this markup type, sites running Thesis 2.0 will fare better in the SEO game. On top of that, you can implement Google’s Rel Author spec which links content to the author, giving a further boost to your SEO.
More SEO-Related Stuff
Verify your site by inserting the code to the Google or Bing site verification slot to get listed. You can also use Google Analytics and make use of the 404 page by presenting interesting info on it instead of a blank page.
In addition to all the good sides already mentioned, it’s now time to see some of the not so good. Users report that there is little documentation provided by the creator as to how to use Thesis 2.0 — it is still a work in process, as the developer wanted to get the product out as quickly as possible. Strange. There is also nowhere nearly as much boxes, skins and packages to be found as one would assume from the info on the product’s homepage. Adding boxes is quite a long and confusing process since you have to add packages and fill several fields prior to that. It’s pretty difficult to figure it all out without any instruction manual. Thesis is a “complete engine rebuild”, so don’t expect updating from previous versions to be easy.
Not considering the fact that it’s quite hard to master the framework and it’s not all that easy as we’re led to believe by the creator, Thesis 2.0 is a big step for the themes. When you think about the possibilities it offers and the SEO edge you’ll be gaining, then it’s worth it. All systems have their flaws, but that’s what upgrades and support are for.
Pricing and Final thoughts
The three Thesis plans don’t come cheap. Thesis Basic is 87 dollars, has unlimited forum support and you can get upgrades for 12 months. But when a year has passed and you are still using Thesis you might want to switch. But guess what, the Basic Plus version is nearly twice as expensive. At $164 it includes the SocialTriggers.com skin and Pearsonified Skin in addition to the obvious two aspects mentioned about Thesis Basic. Thesis Professional is a whopping 197 USD and adds unlimited upgrades, as well as social media and email signup boxes to the list. If you want the best, you have to pay like the good sports do. Or wait awhile, until the developers perfect the art. Good night now!
Thesis 2.0 is a superb Theme Framework and it’s worth your time and attention.