WordPress, StudioPress, Thesis. FTW.

TS-thumbnailWe completed a make-over of one of Learfield’s websites yesterday. Like most companies, we’re watching our expenses, so I was pleased to bring it in for the $59 I paid for the theme (not counting my time and some IT help with site prep).

Since the beginning of the year, we’ve converted a dozen websites to WordPress and the process has gone very smoothly. With 50 users working in half a dozen offices, we needed a very friendly content management system and WordPress has delivered. Both for the people working in our newsrooms and for me.

There are literally thousands of plug-ins for every conceivable task. And they’re all free (or donor supported).

I’m not a designer but the variety of affordable WordPress themes is staggering. After a good bit of looking, I found myself coming back again and again to two providers:

StudioPress has great-looking themes that cost about $60 each. Use as-is or have one customized for a couple of hundred bucks.

Thesis is the theme I chose for our news networks. Out of the box, it’s a clean, minimalist design. We can add a coat of Candy Apple Glitter Flake paint later, but for now, I wanted something that was easy to manage under the hood.


Both of these developers have great support forums and documentation.

I’ve spent less than $2,000 on the refresh of ALL of our websites. Aside from some great help by our IT folks, and the day-to-day content posting by our news and sports staff, I support all of these by myself.

If quick turn-around is a requirement, StudioPress/Thesis + WordPress is a winning combination. If the content has been assembled, I can get a site up and running in a matter of a few hours.

Fast, inexpensive and fun. For the win.

One thought on “WordPress, StudioPress, Thesis. FTW.

  1. I just did a website redesign as well… I moved my old WordPress installation to the newest version and set it up as a photoblog using the Yet Another Photo Blog plugin and a theme I customized myself. I added an animated flash slideshow, then put a second WordPress installation up to host the blog section and all my old posts. The new page just looks like a standard photographer/artist’s site with an about section and contact info, and the blog holds my random rants and photo-related discoveries. All of it was free! If only I could get them to let me setup a WordPress site here at work to host videos instead of sending 150+ DVDs every time there is something new everyone has to watch.

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