Hello! My name is Liz Jamieson and please know, I do not describe myself as a web designer. I may have in the past but I now realise that classification does not apply to me.
I’ve never been trained in graphic design and do not know the best way to combine colours or arrange layouts. When I create a website, I just do what pleases me.
As web design can be difficult for those of us without the training or talent to create original and innovative designs, why even try? Why not do what I do and leverage the talent of the designers over at StudioPress.
I Use Genesis Exclusively
I use StudioPress Genesis Child Themes exclusively. Having bought the whole lot as a package I’ve found that it’s all I need. I never look at Theme Forest or any third party Genesis designs unless they’re included in the StudioPress Pro Plus package.
Oh but those designs are so boring I hear you say.
Well – I suppose if you are looking to stun your site visitors with the originality of your site, I suppose they might be. But I don’t generally want to do that, and my guess is most sensible people don’t want to do that either.
Most businesses want to communicate a message and sell a product. If a site’s design is so cool you can’t work out what to click, or is so overpowering all you see is design and not content, that’s a distraction that will harm sales and conversions.
Your product might be physical like a tee-shirt or downloadable like a WordPress plugin, or incidental like a click on an affiliate link. It doesn’t really matter.
Whatever your end goal, the best approach is always to create a simple site, that works tirelessly to collect visitors, email addresses or otherwise market to your audience. You can do all of that with a Genesis child theme, safe in the knowledge that your theme emerges out of the box, fast and efficient. This efficiency will comeinto play later when you want to start building organic traffic.
What About Page Builders?
I don’t use a page builder for any of my personal sites. I think it’s a good idea to learn HTML and CSS if you’re not in a postion to have someone else take control of your on-page content. Page builders are great, but you’ll get smaller, cleaner more efficient code without them.
For whatever reason, this site does not mention page builders nor does it use any kind of visual editor. All my examples are demonstrated in the text editor using HTML with styling done using CSS. The simplicity of this process is appealing as no page building related plugins, environments and extras are required with this approach.
I use a handful of plugins that are (for me) completely must have – and with those I do almost everything I need. If something specialist is required – for example, a membership site – then I’ll use a specialist plugin for it.
On the whole I find that for ordinary blogs and affiliate sites, I don’t need much in the way of plugins outside my standard set. A couple of the plugins in my standard set, are our own.
So if you decide to sign up to my list on the home page of this site, I’ll show you how to use our free Genesis Club Lite plugin to do 10 simple things on your site. After that, every two weeks or so, I’ll send you a blog post with a tutorial that you may find useful for your Genesis site.
Most of the tutorials I plan to supply on this site will be free.