Genesis Newbie – Multisite Compatibility

Community Forums Forums General Discussion Genesis Newbie – Multisite Compatibility

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  gmurray96 2 years, 1 month ago.

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    Hello. I’m not a developer. I’m a graphic designer and will hire a developer. I have 20 clients that use the same site layout (nearly identical, except page content and navigation). I am going to hire a developer to turn my design into a responsive WordPress theme, so I can begin managing these sites with WP Multisite. These websites are very simple. A typical info site, 10-pages with a blog. I update all my clients page content. They’ll only create/edit their blog posts. The most important thing to me is having a stable theme that will withstand potential pitfalls through updates to WP and plugins.

    I’ve been asking dev/design friends on how to proceed. Some say the theme should be developed with Genesis, while others tell me that Genesis is overkill for my needs and I should have it developed with Zurb, Bootstrap or just using HTML/CSS and media queries.

    A. What would you suggest?

    B. If Genesis wins out, can you provide me with any newbie suggestions (or links) that will educate me about moving forward with Genesis with WP Multisite? Not technical, but perhaps any pitfalls to be aware of when describing my project to a developer.

    C. One friend mentioned there could be problems with Genesis because of the parent/child theme relationship with Multisite. Any idea what he may have been talking about?

    Thank you.


    David Chu

    Interesting question. I’m not a multisite guy, but I can offer a few thoughts. I know that people do use Genesis for multisite. Frankly, I very much doubt that using child themes would hurt multisite – it’s such a standard thing in WordPress now. Some might nitpick about performance, though. One thing is omnipresent: you’ll always have arguments on which WordPress theme base to use, and everyone has an opinion! We’re biased towards Genesis here, of course.

    One of the top Genesis guys, Ron Rennick, is very much into multisite, and even has been in on developing this popular multisite plugin, WordPress MU Domain Mapping:

    He helps out by supporting his various plugins regularly.

    That brings up another point, though. Because not all of us are multisite people, there may be times when multisite questions here collect a little dust. :-) And it could be said that multisite is a little out-of-scope for Genesis free and paid support. So you’re very smart to get a developer to keep an eye on that. In a nutshell, it’s a grey area. And hey, if you really got stuck, maybe you could hire Ron. ;)

    It would be interesting if a multisite geek were to chime in.

    Cheers, Dave

    Dave Chu · Custom WordPress Developer – likes collaborating with Designers



    I did a fun multi-site with about 100 different sites on it, and they were all Genesis child themes.

    I am not a huge fan of the whole multisite environment for my users, because they wanted a lot of customizations and plugins etc.

    As far as Genesis, it is nice to be able to Google “how to fix xxxx on Genesis and find an answer”.

    I was using a different CMS on a client site, and I couldn’t even find a solution to “how to get to the admin login for xxxx”.

    I also went to the AgentPress live event in California and met a bunch of the CopyBlogger folks. I was impressed by their commitment to making products that work really well.

    If you are doing MultiPress or single sites, I would really recommend Genesis.

    Good luck,




    Genesis is fantastic, nothing stops you from using as much or as little of the framework as you like. Take for example the landing page templates; they are as bare minimum as you like.

    You can even use bootstrap with Genesis which works well, for example

    I haven’t messed with multi site much, but I’ve found managing multiple different installs to be very nice with WP Remote. It is a nice compromise in that I can truly keep client installs separate but also lessen the management burden and overhead. there are other management tools as well, but because I use UpdraftPlus Pro for backups, I don’t need the extra features of the other management helpers.

    Finally, I really like the Genesis community so it all adds up to a winning set of solutions for me based on the framework.

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 1 month ago by  coralseait.
    • This reply was modified 2 years, 1 month ago by  coralseait.


    Thank you. I appreciate the replies. I’ve spent over 20 hours in the past few days (as a non-developer) really understanding my options of having my sites developed in Genesis vs other frameworks vs stripped down starters (Roots, HTML Boilerplate, etc…). They each have their own strengths and weaknesses, but Genesis wins out because of my stability and security fears. The concept of the parent playing nicely with WP, while the child doesn’t get touched is reassuring. Plus, there’s already a proven track record of success with Multisite. And obviously, the community is 5-stars, especially when compared to any other starter platform or framework. Thanks, again. I’ll start up other thread soon with more specific questions :)

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